Letters to the Editor

February 25, 2000
Santa Paula pride To the Editor:Under the category of “What’s Right About Santa Paula”:We attended another good Chamber of Commerce Mixer on Wednesday p.m. 2/16 - this one was held and sponsored by The Santa Paula Inn. The owners, Donna and David Stewart, can surely hold their heads up proud - as they have done a magnificent job of renovating the facility into a very pleasant environment both inside and out. The new Inn is truly an asset to our Downtown and is a definite addition to our City’s attraction to tourists and potential new businesses and residents!!If you haven’t already - stop by and see for yourself - you’ll have more pride in our lovely City!! The Inn is another step forward - for us all!!Gene and Sally CaulfieldSanta PaulaToo late...To the Editor:On New Year’s Eve at 12:05 a.m., I phoned the Ojai Police for help as our neighbor and his minor children were setting off what I may have called “firecrackers.”I was assured an officer would be out straightaway. We live on Mercer, north end, a scant 1-1/2 miles from our most recent fire, surrounded by homes that are part wood and tall, dry trees that have lost their leaves. I was panic-struck that instead of going skyward, one would go askew and hit either the children, or the trees or homes.Fifteen minutes later, I called a second time to say that no officer had arrived and this neighbor (I’ll call him “Pete”) and the kids were still setting off the firecrackers.I was again assured that an officer would come and that “they would probably want to speak to me, too”!At 12:55 a.m., three police cars arrived at my door. They did glance in the direction of “Pete’s” house - which by this time was dark as they had long since turned out the lights and gone to bed. So the policemen asked me what the problem was.“Pete” was the problem. He and the kids were setting off firecrackers for about 15 to 20 minutes; most, I said, went up in the sky - over the roof of our neighbor’s house - but one went wrong and went southward in the middle of the street.The officer closest to me said, “Well, after all, ma’am, it is New Year’s.” I was stunned! It took me a second - I said, “And does that make it legal or safe?”“No,” said the officer, “but we can’t do anything because we didn’t see anything.”I told them I wished they could go and roust him and the kids out of bed and explain that he could have caused a fire or caused the kids to be burnt.They said they couldn’t. The one officer (I’ll call him “John Wayne”) said, “Do ya’ wanna file a citizen’s arrest and we’ll haul him off to jail? Is that what you want?” (What am I - the bad guy here?)I felt that seeing the dad dragged off in handcuffs by “John Wayne” at 1 or 2 a.m. would traumatize the kids, that they would grow up hating all cops. What I wanted was for “Pete” and the kids to understand that when you break the law, and possibly endanger the lives and property of others, there is a price to pay. I would have thought that under the tragic circumstances of the Ranch Fire, that all of Capt. Barrett’s officers would be more sensitive. I told the officers that they were no help and should go back to bed.I called the police station again to report my anger. He asked if I wanted the officers to come back and talk to me again. It took them 50 minutes to arrive the first time when there was a potential emergency. I said, “No,” that the Ojai Police were not the people to call when someone was breaking the law.On Monday, I went to the Ojai Police Department to speak to anyone except those three officers. I was told “he” was in a meeting and would call me. I forgot to ask which day - no one called on Monday.I called the Ojai Fire Department and they told me that they would have come and confiscated the fireworks! Yes! Help, finally. However, since it’s after the fact, so they will have to wait until next time. Yikes! The Fourth of July is coming.But you what, “Pete”? Next time I’ll be out with my hose.Does anybody care? Can anyone help me explain to “Pete” how dangerous his behavior was? Perhaps the people who lost their homes just a few weeks ago on Koenigstein Road, when two teenagers thought it would be fun to light what I called a “firecracker” and put it in a mailbox, perhaps they could share some pictures of the damage with “Pete” and his kids.It is now six weeks later and I am still waiting to hear from Capt. Barrett.Where is the help?Sharon LeeOjaiCondor thanksTo the Editor:We would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to everyone who helped make the Isbell Lady Condor’s basketball season a success. Without everyone pulling together, donating time, equipment and facilities, the Lady Condors would not have had a season. First of all, a special thank you to Mrs. Sheryl Misenhimer and Mr. Doug Armstrong for their support throughout the season. A big thank you to Miss Angie Federico, too, who was so generous with her support, time, and driving to away games. This was even after she had just finished coaching volleyball and will be starting the swim team soon.We want to thank Dr. William Brand, Mr. Joe Riccio, and the Santa Paula Union High School District for the use of the girl’s gym and equipment. This is a great example of the two districts working together for the good of all students. We also thank the Boys & Girls Club for the use of their facilities because without both of these organizations’ cooperation and generosity, we would have had to play on asphalt all season.We cannot show our appreciation enough to the following people who refereed our games without pay. Johnny Mata was our “head official” with Renee Delgadillo, Chad Metelak, Michael Kolbeck and Sarah Kolbeck doing their part. Thank you, too, to Mr. Jerry Burns who gave of his time to referee at the Boys & Girls Club. We also thank Sarah Ruiz, Tina Casarez and Rachel Kolbeck for being timers and scorekeepers.Finally, we would like to thank Pat Untiedt and the Santa Paula Times for giving us some recognition and fame for our wonderful season. Our season was definitely a “community” affair and we thank everyone for making it possible.Isbell Lady CondorsMichelle Kolbeck, team momSanta PaulaMost respected candidateTo the Editor:During her first term, Supervisor Kathy Long has worked hard to address a broad range of issues that are important to citizens from all areas of the county. She is a hard working, dedicated supervisor who has the ability to bring diverse groups together to reach a solution that works for everyone. Elected officials from all over the state, impressed by her leadership ability, have recently chosen Supervisor Long as chair of the Urban County Caucus. They all know what we know: she is a leader whose integrity is beyond question.Kathy’s advocacy for the mentally ill and the homeless cannot be questioned, and her track record on these issues sets her apart from her opponent. While Mike Morgan did everything in his power to shut down Camarillo State Hospital, Supervisor Long fought to keep it open. The result of closing this hospital is a housing shortage she is still working to solve. She is also the chair of R.A.I.N., the county organization charged with providing housing for the homeless.As residents of Camarillo for 23 years who were here when the city lost $25 million, we know all too well that Mr. Morgan does not accept responsibility for his actions. Most of us remember that Morgan was a member of a city council asleep-at-the-wheel while the mismanagement of the city’s investment portfolio nearly resulted in bankruptcy. Morgan spent most of his time pointing fingers at others, and refused to accept any personal responsibility for the disaster. Not exactly the qualities most of us look for in a leader.We are proud to support the most qualified, most experienced and most respected candidate: Supervisor Kathy Long.Mark and Terri LisagorCamarilloWell servedTo the Editor:It is unrealistic to expect an elected official to always vote the way you wish them to. If you can find one that does 75% of the time, consider yourself lucky.I consider myself lucky because Kathy Long has served me very well indeed. In less than 20% of the time, I would have preferred she vote differently. However, mature, intelligent people don’t expect the impossible.Aside from policy decisions, I like her style. She is attentive to her constituents’ concerns, studies issues and asks questions, takes swift action if needed (worked quickly to solve the “blood alley” problem). She has spent endless hours working to help the residents of Santa Clara River Valley. She is in the forefront in the fight to stop the Newhall Ranch development, which would be so harmful to our valley.Above all, she is courageous. Winston Churchill said “Courage is the most important virtue; without it the other virtues are of little value.” The decisions that are made the next four years will determine the fate of our valley. I want the realistic, conscientious and courageous Kathy Long to represent me.Martha HarrisSanta PaulaThanks and appreciationTo the Editor:The family of Janet F. Beach would like to extend its sincere thanks and appreciation to the Santa Paula Theater Center for dedicating its production of “The Diary of Anne Frank” in memory of our beloved wife, mother and grandmother. This story of love of family and the triumph of the human spirit is an appropriate way to remember her life. We would also like to thank all those who have or will contribute to the Theater’s memorial fund created to support this production.Janet had a great love for the Theater Center, and supported it through volunteering and attending its many outstanding productions. Indeed, she loved and supported all of the arts and culture of Santa Paula. I would encourage all Santa Paulans to see this play and also to lend their support to the Santa Paula Theater Center. There could be no more fitting tribute to the memory of Janet Beach than to support and sustain the Theater, as well as the many other cultural riches that our community has to offer.Edwin F. BeachSanta PaulaGetting the work doneTo the Editor:
Re: Break time by John WoodsThank you for a well-written letter that I’ve been wanting to write for years! The only thing I would add is, why buy new trucks for a city this size? Why not keep and maintain them for several years? Also, how many times have you seen CalTrans employees having several people stand around while one man does all the work? What we need is to get private enterprise to do most of the work. Believe me it has been proven to be cheaper!Just another city seeing too many city and county maintenance people goofing off. It is time for a change!Chuck WatsonSanta PaulaA unique situationTo the Editor:In 1998 my fellow City Council members and I supported the CURB measure in Camarillo. This measure restricted the city’s step-out annexation of farmland for the next 20 years. We did, however, extend our sphere of influence to accommodate future growth. As you will recall, over 70% of our constituents voted for the measure.Santa Paula is in a different situation. Your growth needs are unlike those of Camarillo. The sphere of influence change recently approved by LAFCO only allows the property owners a chance to present projects which may benefit Santa Paula. Any projects that move forward must meet Santa Paula’s needs and pass all environmental reviews. Hopefully, all mitigations will be met and a consensus can be forged among the citizens of Santa Paula.For these reasons I supported the change in Santa Paula’s sphere of influence. Again, any future annexations must serve the community’s best interest and not cause negative impacts. The Santa Paula City Council will be in a position to help influence a development plan which will provide for all income levels.Michael D. MorganCamarilloA vote for LongTo the Editor:Recently, Supervisor Kathy Long has been commended for her efforts to preserve and improve conditions in the Santa Clara Valley. This includes well deserved credit for challenging plans for development on the Newhall Ranch that threaten our water supply, taking the lead in preserving greenbelts between Ventura and the County line, working with state agencies to improve safety on route 126, promoting the Heritage Valley with its potential for tourism, and expanding county services to citizens of Santa Paula and Fillmore.One large project in the Santa Clara Valley, the Toland Landfill expansion which was approved before Kathy Long was elected, has been subject to her constant surveillance. When serious problems with dust, litter and birds developed as a result of careless landfill operations, Kathy Long with the support of her fellow supervisors directed that an independent monitoring program be implemented to identify ways to mitigate these problems. This has resulted in several actions which reduce dust, litter and bird problems for nearby residents and avocado/citrus growers.When information surfaced over two years ago that Toland Landfill was accepting out-of-county trash in violation of permit conditions, Kathy Long requested an audit to determine the facts. The audit resulted in a finding that daily tonnage of trash from Santa Barbara County being accepted at Toland Landfill exceeds permit conditions by up to four times the tonnage allowed. Rather than comply with the permit issued in 1996 the Ventura Regional Sanitation District has applied for revision to their Conditional Use Permit. This application has been rejected by a unanimous vote of the County Planning Commission. It has been appealed to the Board of Supervisors for approval and will be heard at 10 a.m. Tuesday, March 21, 2000. Ventura County residents should make an effort to be there and let the Supervisors know that this County does not wish to provide landfill service to Santa Barbara County.Above all, Kathy Long deserves your vote on March 7th so that she may continue to make Ventura County a better place to live for all of us.Ben CurtisSanta PaulaA vote for MorganTo the Editor:Mike Morgan has 20 years experience as a public official and policy maker. He has been able to maintain his popularity in Camarillo, both as a city council member and city mayor. He is also a redevelopment consultant and with this background, we need him in the Santa Clara Valley.As a Latina, I am very impressed with his strong ties with the Latino community in Camarillo. He helped found Camarillo’s Sister City with Autlan, Jalisco, Mexico and continues to be very active in it. His ability to speak fluent Spanish shows me that he had the heart and love to be able to take the time to learn another language and culture. With the Santa Clara Valley being a heavily Latino community, I feel that he is better able to represent our whole community and county.Please vote for Mike Morgan for Ventura County Supervisor. Number three on the ballot.Catherine SanchezCamarilloA voice of reason...To the Editor:Are our unions running our County?We just got some calls from Labors International in Ventura. They said they represent “all” the unions. (My family alone is represented by four different unions.) They went on to tell me how to vote. To vote for Mrs. Long no reason given as to why?Apparently they feel that we can’t read to inform ourselves about the issues and candidates that we have to be told how to vote. I resent the fact that I’m told who to vote for by a union.This is one of the influences of special groups that helped cause the County more than 30 million dollars and still counting. The pressure of union reps influenced our current Supervisor Long into voting for the illegal merger of Mental Health and Social Services that caused us - you and me - millions of dollars.If YOU want our County run by a union that’s your choice!If YOU want a voice of reason... not owned by special interest groups then Mike Morgan would be your choice. He won’t be influenced by them. He’ll vote for what’s best for Ventura County.Olivia EscotoSanta PaulaConsider MikeTo the Editor:Here it is, time to vote again! I hope the voters will make a decision to vote Mike Morgan in for Supervisor of the third district. We sure need him. I called and left a message for Mike Morgan, he called back himself. He was very informative with answers to the issues we as a community need to try to solve. We all know this community needs to address very definite problems, we also need an individual that will be sensitive to our needs. Mike Morgan has been in this county for 40 years, he is aware of the needs of the county as well as the needs of each individual community. He is aware that what is good for one community may not be good for other communities in the third district. That is why we need a person that will take each community and the needs of that community into consideration before making any decisions that will have a negative effect.We are surrounded by communities that have prospered, Santa Paula and Fillmore have been left behind. Why? Our communities need to raise our tax base to provide city services for the people that live within the community. How are we going to do this? What has been accomplished in these past few years, with the help of our current representative? Good question! The jail?? Vote against the expansion of our sphere of influence? Give us the opportunity!! Do we have the luxury to have our representatives make the wrong decisions time after time?!?Get out and vote! I hope you will consider Mike Morgan as your choice!Maiya HerreraSanta PaulaWho can we trust?To the Editor:What the V.C. Star says about Kathy Long...“Third District Supervisor Kathy Long may someday admit her role in helping create the problems that followed the county’s attempt to merge its mental health and social service operations nearly two years ago.“In fact, she and her colleagues were warned before the merger by former Chief Administrative Officer Lin Koester that it would not work; that it likely would be found illegal; that the state would not support it.... The problem is that she approved an illegal merger despite ample warnings that it would be illegal.“Mrs. Long refuses to say three words: ‘I was wrong.’ And that is the touch of arrogance that concerns the Star as Mrs. Long seeks a second term representing one of the county’s fastest growing districts.”More than 30 million dollars... and counting. When asked about it she says she “would do it again.”What the L.A. Times says about Mike Morgan...“We endorse Michael D. Morgan. He has the experience in precisely what the county needs right now. He was on the Camarillo council in the late 1980s when the city found itself on the verge of bankruptcy. He helped to bring in a top-flight city manager who not only paid off all the city’s debts but, over time, helped make Camarillo perhaps the county’s most fiscally secure city.“At a time when the Board of Supervisors needs to learn to stick to policymaking and let a strong executive handle the details, Morgan’s experience is apt. We support Morgan’s view that the county’s chief administrative officer needs more authority and agree with him that ‘Kingdoms can’t be built behind the scenes. If you do that, you become political entities and they fight with each other.’“Behind-the-scenes political strife serves no one well, a costly lesson that Kathy Long seems not to have fully learned. For that reason we endorse Michael Morgan.” We can trust him.Ventura County needs a Supervisor with experience....Mike Morgan will bring financial stability back to Ventura County. We deserve it!Eric EscotoSanta Paula

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