Vol. 12, No. 21 – July 17 – July 30, 2019 – Opinion/Editorial

Sheldon is on vacation enjoying beautiful Ventura. These are snippets from previous articles for your reading pleasure.

A teenager died when he was struck by a train in Ventura. The incident happened on the tracks near Hurst Avenue and Ocean Avenue, according to a Union Pacific official. The 17-year-old male from West Hills was struck by a southbound Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train. Authorities say that his death appears to be a suicide.

Immediately, some accused the City Council because Union Pacific had removed their fences that kept people from crossing over the tracks. These fences were owned by Union Pacific and were on their property. They removed them because of the opposition to the fences by some folks living in midtown who crossed over the tracks to get to the beach.

The City Council certainly gets some things wrong, but this wasn’t one of them. Can’t blame them for everything

The City Council has authorized the City Manager to execute a Funding and Services Agreement not to exceed $250,000 to the Museum of Ventura County. I agree with this decision. In addition to local visitors, the museum brings outsiders to Ventura.

It passed the council with one opposing vote, which came from Councilman Jim Friedman. When running for council Jim said he would only approve funding for “core” projects. I don’t agree with him but can respect that he is “sticking to his guns.” Is it still okay to use that phrase?

If you made $60 million (or more) playing basketball you could make comments like this one and still be a great role model for kids: “Once I saw that story, I just seen a kid turning into a man. This is my career and I’m taking this. I done had enough.”

∙ Now that we have city council districts (four have been elected by district for now – but all council members will eventually be based upon districts when currents terms are up) – I think that these four should have quarterly townhall meetings to hear what the concerns (and likes) are from their constituents.

They are: Sofia Rubalcava, Deputy Mayor – District 1; Lorrie Brown, Councilmember – District 6; Jim Friedman, Councilmember – District 5; Erik Nasarenko, Councilmember – District 4.

These are their emails if you want to contact them: 

enasarenko@cityofventura.ca.gov;srubalcava@cityofventura.gov;jfriedman@cityofventura.ca.gov; lbrown@cityofventura.ca.gov.

If you don’t know what district you are in, go to https://map.cityofventura.net/java/ccvd/ for a district map and enter your address to find out what district you are in.

∙ H. Parker Hospitality has decided not to continue negotiations with the Ventura Port District for the purchase of two parcels in the Harbor at the end of Spinnaker Dr. Their plans were to build a high-end hotel/spa and hybrid hostel.

The stated reason is that the District was not able to provide ‘clean’ title for land. There are probably other reasons, but this was their stated one.

These are great parcels and will certainly be considered by other developers (oh no, the dreaded word) as soon as the title situation is resolved. About 30-years ago, the District filed for bankruptcy which, apparently has caused some concerns about the ownership of the parcels and clear title.

We are one of only nine cities in California to make Fortune Small Business magazine’s list of the 100 best places to live and launch a small business. We were No. 68.

It just got a little harder to open a store that sells firearms and ammunition in Ventura.

The City Council voted 7-0 to approve an ordinance that limits where in the city these businesses can be located.

Once the new rules become law, a firearms business won’t be allowed to open if it’s within 500’ of a “sensitive use,” a designation that includes schools, parks, religious institutions, day care facilities and residential zones. Such stores will need to be at least 200’ away from a similar business.

The new rules limits stores to three areas based upon the zone. Limited Industrial (M-1), General Industrial (M-2) and Manufacturing Planned Development (MPD).

Even though I don’t like guns much I’m not sure limiting where stores can be located serves any purpose at all.

During the approximately eight years publishing the Breeze prior to Trump being elected president, I never have made political comments regarding Democrats or Republicans, conservatives or liberals because it was always just Washington doing business as usual. But, I have some real problems with the Trump presidency and feel that I must comment.

Other than an occasional political cartoon or my column, the Breeze never takes a political view in our news coverage. We are not as liberal a paper as some think.

There are some readers who say they love the Ventura Breeze, but they won’t read it anymore because of my very limited words or the occasional editorial cartoon not supporting Trump.

I think that’s a ridiculous reason to stop reading the Breeze, especially if you otherwise like it. There are approximately 30,000 to 40,000 words in each issue of the Breeze, so my comments (most of which are just quoting others) are about.003% of the words in the paper.

And if you do disagree with me, you have an opportunity to be heard in the Breeze. In fact, I’m only one voice, so if several readers write in disagreeing, that is even a stronger voice than mine. So, let’s hear your comments at opinions@venturebreeze.com.

Per the cover article in this issue, the Board of Education has hired Dr. Roger Rice as the new Superintendent of Ventura Unified School District (VUSD). He sounds very qualified, but so has the several others in the position that have recently come and gone. I certainly hope he stays around long enough to help the VUSD get even better.

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