Vol. 9, No. 9 – February 3 – February 16, 2016 – Mailbox

Hi Sheldon,

Read your note in the Breeze on homeless in Ventura, with some folks making comments they should somehow be removed, despite fact many homeless in our community are not breaking the law…

It appears some in the Community do not consider fact the City has limited amount of resources to better help unfortunate homeless people in our community.

One way to help generate more funds that could be allocated to helping the homeless among other services, without raising local sales tax, is to entice all the many  long-time local-yokel home owners in Ventura, who have lived in the same home for decades, (in some cases even willed to them through relatives) who contribute substantially less in property taxes per year than more recent home buyers due to Prop 13,  to either pony up some voluntary contributions to help the homeless and fund a fairer share for local schools, roads and other basic services, or sell their homes at substantial profit, reinvest equity proceeds to purchase another local home, and if none of that suits, bugger on out… In addition, the Community needs to be open to build more upscale homes, which can generate substantially higher property tax base needed to fund services.

Prop 13 has negative side effects on some local communities in the State of California. Communities, including in Ventura County, that have higher property purchase turnover rates, generally have a continual higher property tax base of funds to work with, due to Prop 13. Communities like City of Ventura, which has a more static long time local yokel homeowner population, (many of whom are anti-growth / development) suffer due to lower, more static property tax bases.  Even though only 16% of the property tax dollar may go to local coffers, 16% of $10k property tax per year pays a hell of a lot more local bills than a relatively paltry 16% of $1k or less…

What ends up happening in communities like local-yokel retro dominated Ventura, is the City Government is constantly on the prowl looking for ways to increase income, whether through parking fees, local sales tax increases or heaven only knows what, to support basic services that the existing local population does not contribute enough through percentage of property taxes to fund in the first place…


Cris Sabo-Ventura

Dear Sheldon

Thank you for highlighting the good work of the Homeless Prevention Fund in your latest publication.  As stated in your article, it is much cheaper and more humane to help prevent a person from becoming homeless than to help them get out of homelessness.  This fund is supported primarily by private donations from community members. It is often low on funds with the risk of not being able to help someone, often a family, with an average donation of $500 to keep them in their home. City council members are  often asked, how can I help with the homeless problem in our city?  This is one of the ways, we can all help.  More information can be found on Venturahomelessprevention.org.

Thank you again for highlighting an important but little known resource in our community.

Former Mayor Cheryl Heitmann




I am so glad that there is renewed interest in the city’s short term rental policy. I have watched the rapid growth of this phenomenon in the last few years and am convinced that it is leading to a potential radical change in our community. T

The situation where a number of the communities along the California coast are adopting regulations much stricter than Ventura  inevitably will lead to Ventura becoming the center for short term rentals with all the issues that are involved. It seems to me that we have a situation where we have an ordinance that is basically un-understandable and which many people believe allows a revolving door allowing rentals pretty much all the time including every weekend.

Enforcement , including noise complaints, seems to not only rely on neighbors complaining , but also finding someone to complain to. If the city has an administrator for this area, and it’s not clear that there is anyone since Janie Dunn retired, the person doesn’t work weekends as far as we know, when they are most needed. Also,  even though there are regulations  it’s impossible for the neighbors to really tell how many people are occupying a house.

Most cities have recognized these problems and have taken steps which include longer minimum rental periods to eliminate large one night parties and to attract more families. This community is a residential community and I can’t think of anything that will change its character  more than the transient nature of short term rentals. This may be our last  chance to save our community from major deterioration and we should not let it pass without making the strongest effort possible.

Stefanie Roth-Ventura


We received this correction (Even we make mistakes)

The photo and caption associated with your  article of Jan. 20, 2016 about the Ventura Homeless Prevention Fund were not, in fact, related to the article.

The Ventura Homeless Prevention Fund keeps people who are currently housed from becoming homeless, which is the least expensive and most effective way to end homelessness.  Every penny donated to the Fund goes directly to keeping people who are housed, in their homes.

Other agencies work with individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness.

I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.
 ~ Will Rogers

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