The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clara Valley received a grant of $26,000 from the Santa Clara Valley Wellness Foundation (SCVWF) to purchase sanitizing supplies for three sites to reopen, which are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pictured is Gloria Camarillo, President of SCVWF, Jan Marholin, CEO BGCSV, and Mary Deines, Treasurer SCVWF. Photo courtesy BGCSV.
The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clara Valley received a grant of $26,000 from the Santa Clara Valley Wellness Foundation (SCVWF) to purchase sanitizing supplies for three sites to reopen, which are currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Pictured is Gloria Camarillo, President of SCVWF, Jan Marholin, CEO BGCSV, and Mary Deines, Treasurer SCVWF. Photo courtesy BGCSV.
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Courtesy BGCSV

The Santa Clara Valley Wellness Foundation has joined a collaborative effort with the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clara Valley. This is a win-win partnership in so many ways. Due to the COVID 19 Virus the Boys & Girls Club will need to have cleaning and sanitizing supplies in order to eventually reopen their doors again to local youth. This grant allows for the purchasing of those supplies for all three sites (Santa Paula, Fillmore and Piru). In addition to supplies the grant will fund daily nutritional snacks for youth during the summer months and non school days. With grant funds the Club has also been able to purchase two additional 3D printers to continue assisting making frames for face shields for first responders. Thank you to the Santa Clara Valley Wellness Foundation for your partnership. You may make contributions to the SCVWF at PO Box 348 Santa Paula, CA 93061.

 


 
James Melton, 55 of Ventura
James Melton, 55 of Ventura

A Ventura resident was arrested for a series of crimes related to a vehicle burglary and fraudulent use of credit cards. The investigation revealed he was involved in various crimes throughout the region.

During the month of April, the victim parked her vehicle near the intersection of Seventh Street and Sycamore Road in the unincorporated area of Fillmore. The victim went for a jog and returned about 40 minutes later. When she returned to the car, she discovered one of the windows of the vehicle was shattered. Upon closer inspection, the victim learned that several valuables were taken such as electronic equipment and credit cards. As deputies investigated the crime, the victim received notice from her financial institution that a credit card had been used at a gas station in Santa Paula. The victim immediately canceled the credit cards.

Detectives conducted a follow up investigation and were able to identify the suspect as James Melton. On 05/07/20, investigators located Melton in the 6000 block of Webster Street in Ventura. The information received during the arrest led detectives to his residence which was nearby. A search warrant was obtained for his residence, vehicle and an offsite storage locker. During the execution of the warrant, several vital evidentiary items were recovered that included items taken from the victim’s car. Melton was in possession of multiple tools that are consistent with committing vehicle burglaries, such as window punches and bolt cutters. Additional evidence recovered suggests there may be additional victims. The investigation into other crimes is ongoing.

Melton was arrested and booked at the Pre-Trial Detention Facility for 459 PC-burglary, 182 (a)(1) PC-conspiracy, 484g PC- fraudulent use of access card, 496 PC- possession of stolen property, 11377(a) HS- possession of a controlled substance, and 11364 (a) HS- possession of drug paraphernalia. Melton was released shortly after he was booked as mandated by the California Judicial Council’s zero bail schedule. Melton has a court date on July 8, 2020.

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind the public to be aware not to leave valuables in vehicles parked on a public thoroughfare. If possible, it is wise to leave costly articles at home or out of view within vehicles.

Nature of Incident: Vehicle Burglar Arrested
Report Number: RB# 20-54186
Location: Seventh Street at Sycamore Road, unincorporated area of Fillmore
Date & Time: April 17th, 2020 4:50 pm
Unit(s) Responsible: Fillmore Investigations Unit
(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent City of Residence - Age
(S) James Melton, 55 of Ventura
Prepared by: Sergeant Vince Alvarez
Approved by: Captain Garo Kuredjian

 


 
Fillmore Unified School District
Fillmore Unified School District

The purpose of this message is to inform you of current actions to ensure that we recognize and celebrate the graduating seniors of Fillmore High School, Sierra High School, and Heritage Valley Independent Study.

The Fillmore Unified School District Governing Board is committed to supporting an in-person graduation ceremony for our graduating seniors once we have received authorization from public health officials to hold gatherings. We do not have any information as to when the public health orders will change and will inform the community once an update has been received.

However, I am pleased to share with our district community that our district and high school leadership have identified a Unique way of recognizing our graduating seniors while also adhering to the current recommendations from public health. A vehicle procession will take place in the coming weeks to provide an opportunity for our faculty and staff to recognize the Class of 2020. Principals John Wilber and Pablo Leanos will be providing information to our graduating seniors and their families about the procession. The procession will not be open to the public and staff are researching the ability to provide alive stream of the event.

We know that these are extraordinarily challenging times for all of us and hope that you and your loved ones are safe. Thank you for your continued support.

 


 
Map outlining areas where work is scheduled on city’s utility project. Photo Courtesy City of Fillmore.
Map outlining areas where work is scheduled on city’s utility project. Photo Courtesy City of Fillmore.
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The City of Fillmore has contracted Toro Enterprises, Inc. to perform street repairs on HWY 126 and HWY 23 on City owned utility covers. All work will be performed at night to limit the inconvenience to the public. The limits of the work will be as follows: - HWY 126 from D Street to Santa Clara Street - HWY 23 from HWY 126 to River Street - Estimated time of construction: 8:00 PM – 5:00 AM MONDAY – FRIDAY - Dates: 5/4/2020 – 6/5/2020 - PLEASE COMPLY WITH NO PARKING SIGNAGE. We apologize for the inconvenience. For Questions call Toro Enterprises: 805-207-2362 or City Contact: Julian De Anda: 805-202-6816.

 


 

An emergency statewide bail rule, which was implemented in April by the Judicial Council of California, has resulted in 34 offenders being booked and released multiple times from the Ventura County Pre-Trial Detention Facility. One man has been booked and released six separate times in three weeks.

The rule eliminates bail for nearly all misdemeanor offenses and some low grade felonies, and was intended to reduce jail populations statewide to keep the coronavirus from spreading among inmates. Qualifying arrestees are booked and released without having to post any bail.

“The problem with this scheme is these repeat offenders keep coming back to jail and are more likely to contract and spread the virus than if they stayed in custody in the first place,” said Sheriff Bill Ayub. “It’s frustrating for deputies to arrest the same people over and over again and see them walk out of jail.”

With court cases on hold, offenders are not being sentenced to serve their time in jail. As a result, the local jail population is now below 900 inmates. The jail population in Ventura County normally averages between 1400 and 1500 inmates.

The zero bail rule will remain in effect until 90 days after the state of emergency is lifted by Governor Gavin Newsom.

Prepared by: Captain Eric Buschow
Approved by: Sheriff Bill Ayub

 
Rio Vista 3d grader Alejandra Robles, age 8, was asked by her teacher Mrs. Liu to write or draw a note thanking the first responders/frontline workers battling COVID-19.
Rio Vista 3d grader Alejandra Robles, age 8, was asked by her teacher Mrs. Liu to write or draw a note thanking the first responders/frontline workers battling COVID-19.
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Alejandra’s note reads, “Dear Frontline Workers, I am very proud of what you are doing right now in these difficult times. Thank you for protecting us, we are very thankful for everything you do for us. And thank you for risking your lives for us.”
Alejandra’s note reads, “Dear Frontline Workers, I am very proud of what you are doing right now in these difficult times. Thank you for protecting us, we are very thankful for everything you do for us. And thank you for risking your lives for us.”
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Fillmore High School’s Isabella Palazuelos, 2020 National Merit Scholarship winner.
Fillmore High School’s Isabella Palazuelos, 2020 National Merit Scholarship winner.

Fillmore High School’s Isabella Palazuelos was awarded the 2020 National Merit Scholarship for $2,500. Her award was supported by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation’s own funds. Some of Isabella’s probable career field goals include education (college professor).

National Merit® $2500 Scholarship Winners
On May 13th, National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced this year’s National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners. The 2,500 Merit Scholar designees were chosen from a talent pool of more than 15,000 outstanding Finalists in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program.

National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners are the Finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.

These Scholars were selected by a committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors, who appraised a substantial amount of information submitted by both the Finalists and their high schools: the academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned; scores from the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®); contributions and leadership in school and community activities; an essay written by the Finalist; and a recommendation written by a high school official.

NMSC finances most of these single-payment National Merit $2500 Scholarships.

Corporations and company foundations that sponsor awards through NMSC also help underwrite these scholarships with grants they provide in lieu of paying administrative fees. Scholars may use their awards at any regionally accredited U.S. college or university.

2020 National Merit Scholarship Competition
This year’s National Merit Scholarship Program began in October 2018 when over 1.5 million juniors in approximately 21,000 high schools took the PSAT/NMSQT, which served as an initial screen of program entrants. Last fall, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than one percent of the nation’s high school seniors, were named Semifinalists on a state-representational basis. Only these 16,000 Semifinalists had an opportunity to continue in the competition.

From the Semifinalist group, some 15,000 students met the very high academic standards and other requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. By the conclusion of the 2020 program, about 7,600 Finalists will have earned the “Merit Scholar” title and received a total of over $30 million in college scholarships.

NMSC, a not-for-profit corporation that operates without government assistance, was founded in 1955 specifically to conduct the National Merit Scholarship Program. The majority of scholarships offered each year are underwritten by approximately 400 independent corporate and college sponsors that share NMSC’s goals of honoring scholastically talented youth and encouraging academic excellence at all levels of education.

 
The first original Fillmore State Bank at Santa Clara and Central which became incorporated in 1905. Photos courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum.
The first original Fillmore State Bank at Santa Clara and Central which became incorporated in 1905. Photos courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum.
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Interior of the original bank building.
Interior of the original bank building.
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Second Fillmore State Bank Building at Main and Central.
Second Fillmore State Bank Building at Main and Central.
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Same building, but now Bank of Italy.
Same building, but now Bank of Italy.
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Same Building but now Bank of America.
Same Building but now Bank of America.
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Same Building but now Bank of A. Levy.
Same Building but now Bank of A. Levy.
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Fergus
Fergus "Ted" Fairbanks.
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Copies of checks from the first three incarnations of the bank.
Copies of checks from the first three incarnations of the bank.
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Courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum

Fillmore’s first bank was incorporated in 1905, before the town was incorporated. The president was Felix Ewing, an attorney and judge on the Ventura County Superior Court, who never lived in Fillmore but served as legal council for many area banks including the Bank of A. Levy. Its first location was on the southeast corner of Central and Santa Clara Street (the building still is there today) and was faced with Sespe Brownstone from George Henley’s Sespe quarry. The Masons met on the second story until they built their own building on the northeast corner of Sespe and Central in 1920.

One of the early employees at the bank was Fergus “Ted” Fairbanks. He was the cashier at the bank from 1907 until 1919 when he entered the law profession. Previously he had lived in Ventura and had been employed by the Bank of Hueneme. In 1963, Mr. Fairbanks wrote an article for the Ventura Historical Society, “Early Day Banks and Banking in Ventura County” which gives his personal perspective on the banking industry and particular banks in the county. He had been recruited by Judge Ewing to “wake the town up – it was nearly dead.” Fairbanks told him he would not take the job unless the bank would back him getting a newspaper started in the town. The Judge was reluctant, probably because he thought Fairbanks was looking for a financial backing. Once it was made clear only moral support was wanted, the deal was struck. The bank had a new cashier and Fillmore had a newspaper.

Ted Fairbanks immediately became active in the community, being a charter member of the Board of Trade (later the Chamber of Commerce) and the Rotary Club as well as serving on the School Board. He practiced law in Fillmore for many years

George Tighe succeeded Ewing as president. Tighe was local business owner with a department store at 345 Central Avenue. It was noteworthy for, among other things, having the first paved sidewalk in Fillmore in 1909.

By 1917, the Fillmore State Bank outgrew its original building and a new building was built just up Central Avenue on the northwest corner of Main and Central. For many years the town library occupied the second floor. The Fillmore State Bank stayed in business at that location until it was bought by the San Francisco, Bank of Italy in 1927. Bank of Italy had been founded in 1904 in San Francisco by Amadeo P. Giannini, and began expansion throughout California. In 1928 the Bank of Italy merged with the smaller Bank of America in Los Angeles and took that as its name.

The Bank of America remained at the Main and Central site until it sold the building to the Bank of A. Levy in 1965. Bank of America moved to a new location at 552 Sespe Avenue. In 1995, the Bank of A. Levy was taken over by First Interstate Bank, who in turn was taken over by Wells Fargo. This is how one building, on the corner of Main and Central, became the home to many banks.

 
Photo of the Week: "Gorgeous California poppies (Eschscholzia californica)" by Bob Crum. Photo data: Canon 7DMKII, manual mode, Tamron 16-300mm lens @24mm with polarizing filter. Exposure; ISO 400, aperture f/11, 1/200 sec shutter speed.
Photo of the Week: "Gorgeous California poppies (Eschscholzia californica)" by Bob Crum. Photo data: Canon 7DMKII, manual mode, Tamron 16-300mm lens @24mm with polarizing filter. Exposure; ISO 400, aperture f/11, 1/200 sec shutter speed.
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I needed Shinrin-yoku
Bob Crum
Bob Crum

The social police wasted no time reminding me that my recent visit to the Antelope Valley poppy fields broke the shelter-at-home guidelines. "Stay home and protect the world!" However, my respite to nature was not unlike a Sunday drive. When I stopped, I was never closer than 200 yards from the nearest human.

Photography was one motivation for the visit but not the only reason. Long ago, I came to the understanding that our upbringing never leaves us. Just as food, water and shelter are vital for our and comfort and well-being, so is a frequent commune with nature. I lived my young years in a small farming community. Woods surrounded the town. To the north, my favorite forest. A babbling brook flowed through it. Six-foot high bramble bushes guarded the parameter. Attempting to breach this tangle of thorny plants required heavy armor. So with pruning sheers, I carefully cut a 'secret' tunnel through eight feet of bramble to access my creek-side oasis.

Paraphrasing Time.com, being in nature can restore our mood, restore our energy and vitality, refresh and rejuvenate us. Japanese practice something called forest bathing, or shinrin-yoku. Shinrin in Japanese means forest, and yoku means bath. So shinrin-yoku means bathing in the forest atmosphere or taking in the forest through our senses. This is not exercise, or hiking, or jogging. It is simply being in nature, connecting with it through our senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch.

In further defense of my alleged illegal behavior, a public health report by researchers Stamatakis and Mitchell report that "being in nature, or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, fear, and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, but it also contributes to your physical well-being, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones. It may even reduce mortality." So you see, my shinrin-yoku pilgrimage was for medicinal purposes and thus totally legal!

Photographing poppies is always challenging. In bright daylight, sunlight reflected from the petals causes the camera's light meter to go wonky. The brightness makes the camera want to reduce exposure drastically. To neutralize the flower petal glare, I employed a polarizing filter. Sometimes helpful, but a polarizing filter is most effective at an angle 45Âş from the sun - not so much when shooting at the sun or with the sun at my back.

I noticed another interesting phenomenon that I'll call an apparent color shift. As I look out over a field of poppies in one direction, I see a blaze of intense orange. Turn and look at a field of poppies in a different area and I see a field of mostly yellow. Why? There must be a scientific reason. A poppy plant was blooming next to where I was standing. I got down on the ground. At ground level the dominant color I saw was intense orange, very little yellow observed. When I stood and look down at the poppies, I saw a mixture of orange and yellow, a lot of yellow. Conclusion: the tops of poppies are buttered! Aha! So, the color of the poppies one sees, or photographs, from afar is dependent on your position and the viewing angle. Mystery solved!

For the photo of the week, I got intimate with the ants and other critters flitting around on the ground to get the desired photo. Nothing but the best is good enough for my 2,692,585 readers. Happy photoing!

Send comments, suggestions or questions to: focusonphotography@earthlink.netFocus on Photography

 

COVID-19 has infected 595 Ventura residents, with 11,854 being tested as of May 5th--13 of those are in Fillmore.

Ventura County Health Care Agency has announced free tests to residents who meet the specified criteria, which varies with symptomatic and asymptomatic patients. The process to test front line workers and the rest of the public differs.

Front line workers, grocery employees, food-supply chain employees, utility works, etc, can visit https://lhi.care/covidtesting to fill out a questionnaire or call 1-888-634-1123. A physician’s referral is not necessary.
All other residents must call the county’s Ambulatory Urgent Care hotline at 805-652-7660 to be pre-screened and to make an appointment.

Fillmore Testing location: Family Medical Group, 828 W. Ventura St., Fillmore. Hours are 9am to 5pm, Monday thru Friday.
Residents who believe they have the coronavirus must have respiratory symptoms such as cough or shortness of breath, or have two of the other symptoms; fever greater than 100.4, chills, headache, sore throat, muscle pain, and loss of smell or taste.

Asymptomatic residents may be tested up to two times if they have been in close contact with a lab-confirmed COVID-19 positive case. Close contact is defined by living or staying at the same residence or being an intimate sexual partner. It can also mean staying within six feet for more than 10 minutes while an infected person is not wearing a mask; having direct contact for any amount of time with the body fluids or secretions of an infected person through cough or sneeze, from the use of shared utensils, in the care of or have provided care to an infected person without wearing a mask, gloves and gown.

Once the close contact criteria are met, the asymptomatic person can be tested at the beginning of the 14-day quarantine. If the person tests negative, then he/she may be tested a second time at the end of the quarantine.

County residents will not be charged for the test and are not required to have health insurance, but they will be asked for insurance information if available.

County health officials are hoping to increase testing from an average of 1,500 per week to 4,000 per week.

https://vcportal.ventura.org/covid19/docs/2020-05-03_Covid19Testing.pdf