Local man arrested for child luring

Local man arrested for child luring

Carpinterian Oscar Mora, 23, was arrested recently on numerous charges including traveling for the purposes of engaging a minor for sex, conspiracy to commit a crime and child luring.

On Aug. 30, officers from the Oxnard Police Department responded to a call from an Oxnard resident who had reviewed her 12-year-old daughter’s mobile device and discovered that she had been involved in an online sexual conversation with a male adult. After an extensive two-month investigation, investigators from the Oxnard Police Department’s Family Protection Unit arrested Mora, who is currently in custody at the Ventura County Jail with bail set at $250,000.

Investigators have reason to believe that there may be other victims that have been contacted by Mora. Anyone with additional information should contact Detective Terrance Dobrosky at 385-7609.

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Fire board brings $10.65 million bond measure to voters

Fire board brings $10.65 million bond measure to voters
From left, Fire Chief Mike Mingee presents outgoing board members Craig Price and Ben Miller with plaques to thank them for their service. The third outgoing board member, Lisa Guravitz, received a plaque after serving a full term and leaving the board in 2012. She was reappointed to her seat after boardmember Bob Duncan passed away earlier this year. (Photo by Lea Boyd)

By Lea Boyd
The road leading to a unanimous decision by the fire board for a bond measure was longer and rockier than anyone anticipated; nonetheless, on Nov. 18 a once divided board came together to bring before voters a $10.65 million bond measure to construct a new fire station in Summerland and remodel the existing fire station in Carpinteria.

The mail-in election will take place in May of 2015, and passage of the measure will require two-thirds voter approval. If approved, the bond would add $9.80 per $100,000 in assessed value to property taxes within the boundaries of the district, which spans from Ortega Ridge to Rincon Creek.

A small but supportive audience attended the meeting of the Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District’s Board of Directors, and several attendees advocated for the long awaited decision. “I’m kind of overwhelmed with happiness at this point,” said Summerland resident Reeve Woolpert.

For outgoing boardmembers Craig Price, Ben Miller and Lisa Guravitz—none of whom sought reelection—approval of the bond measure resolution was a gratifying end to a long process that threatened to derail completely in the last few years. After receiving a plaque in thanks for his service to the district, Price said, “The best going away present that I can think of is having this board pass a unanimous resolution to put a bond measure on the ballot.”

Momentum toward new stations had been fairly steady until, in 2012, the firefighters announced their hesitation to support a bond measure that would improve facilities but do nothing to restore a workforce reduced by budget cuts during the recession. With the backing of the firefighters association, Chris Johnson and Bill Taff were elected to the board that year, and they pumped the brakes on plans for new stations. Since then, an independent station location study concluded that the planned Summerland site would be the best fit for a new station.

Taff did not attend the Nov. 18 board meeting, but Johnson voted with the outgoing board members to put the bond measure up for election.

Tuesday night’s audience also included the three incoming fire board members, Nilo Fanucchi, Pete Thompson and Margaret Baker. Fanucchi and Thompson are new to the station discussion, but Baker became a vociferous critic of the district’s plans for a new Summerland station a few years ago.

Deemed by Baker and other opponents as excessive and dubbed the “Taj Majal,” the planned Summerland fire station had already cleared a lengthy permitting process by Santa Barbara County before roadblocks for bond funding began to form. Construction of the two-story station, will require the purchase of a property currently owned by willing seller Santa Barbara County Mosquito and Vector Control District on the corner of Lillie and Temple avenues.

Summerland community members have been strong supporters of the new station, and most of Tuesday night’s enthusiastic speakers represented that area. The small town’s existing fire station was originally built more than 75 years ago and fails to meet current size or seismic needs. Squeezed between Highway 101 and Lillie Avenue, the property does not offer ample space to expand nor is it ideally situated.

“It could not be clearer that we need a new fire station in Summerland,” said Carpinterian Jane Benefield, who serves on a citizens ad hoc committee for station plans. “Let’s move on and approve the resolution and the bond measure and stop the foot dragging.”

The new fire board will be seated in December.

CUSD Community Meeting focuses on Common Core, Measure U

By Peter Dugré
A great change is underway for Carpinteria Unified School District. At the annual Community Meeting on Nov. 17, district administrators caught parents up to speed on the main principles of the newly implemented Common Core State Standards and what to expect now that Measure U, the $90 million school bond to improve facilities, passed on Nov. 4.

Measure U oversight
It could be several years before ground breaks on any Measure U projects, and according to Assistant Superintendent Cindy Abbott, the time between now and groundbreaking will be dedicated to careful planning. She emphasized that while flexibility on how to spend the $90 million was intentionally built into the ballot measure, the details are in the Facilities Master Plan, which was 18 months in the making and a product of extensive analysis of all school sites. “If anyone wants to know what we’re going to be doing, it’s all there in the Facilities Master Plan,” she said.

Another point of emphasis was in the formation of an Independent Citizens Bond Oversight Committee, a requirement of the education code meant to ensure monitoring of bond expenditures. Within the priority projects of replacing 63 portables with modular classrooms, modernizing electrical and plumbing and building modern science classrooms at the high school, the oversight committee will be able to ensure that bond monies are being efficiently allotted. “The whole process is about budget control,” commented Abbott of the bond.

The committee will be made up of at least seven community members who will be selected from a spectrum of parents, business leaders and seniors, as specified in the education code. Applications can be found at the CUSD office, 1400 Linden Ave.

Abbott cautioned that signs of progress may not be evident in the near future. “You might look around next summer and wonder what we’re doing. We will be planning. We will be designing,” she said.

Common Core launched
Superintendent Paul Cordeiro described the implementation of new Common Core State Standards this year as a work in progress that aims to challenge students more as part of the emerging effort to catch United States students up with the rest of the world.

In language arts classrooms, writing will be the top priority. Most often, students will be asked to read nonfiction texts and source them in writing. “Literature is not going away; it’s beautiful and teaches a lot of things, but nonfiction is on the rise, ” Cordeiro said.

Math classrooms are merging problem solving and mastery of how numbers work to teach the “math behind the math,” according to Cordeiro. “Math and solving problems used to live in different universes; now we’re trying them together,” he said.

At the high school level, a greater integration of concepts from algebra, geometry and statistics will be applied in order to build a foundation of number sense.

And the upheaval of the state standards system will be monitored by a new testing system, California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress. Further details about Common Core and CASPP can be found at cusd.net under the “Parents” menu.

Local Control Accountability Plan
State standards changed and the Academic Performance Index, a measure of school districts based on standardized testing were discontinued in 2013, the year that CUSD scored an 809, its first time above the state-mandated proficiently threshold of 800.

New ways to hold districts responsible, known as Local Control Accountability Plans, have been implemented. In CUSD, that involves measuring student achievement for academics alongside student outcomes and items attached to emotional wellbeing at school like student involvement and school climate. CUSD’s LCAP was approved by the school board and Santa Barbara County Education Office before its implementation this year.

Starting in 2016, a combination of results on new state testing on Common Core Standards and other yet-to-be-decided factors will be used to generate new API scores. Administrators noted that CUSD had climbed above neighboring districts Santa Barbara, Ojai, Ventura and Lompoc before the former API system was discontinued.

Cat declawing decried as inhumane: California law precludes city declawing ban

Cat declawing decried as inhumane: California law precludes city declawing ban

By Kateri Wozny

Over the past two years, cat declawing has become a hot topic in the letters section of Coastal View News, and, as such, the City of Carpinteria has fielded several calls and emails from residents wondering why its leaders have failed to take a compassionate stance against a procedure that surgically amputates all or part of the end bones of a cat’s toes in order to remove the claws. The compassion exists, city officials say, but a California law ties the city’s hands when it comes to a ban on declawing.

“Compassion is the desire to help alleviate suffering,” Elsa Lambert stated in a letter to CVN. “Animals have a compassionate instinct. Laws protect the seals at the rookery. Why, in Carpinteria, do ethics apply to seals and not to felines?”

Between 2002 to 2009, five cities in Los Angeles County, Berkeley and San Francisco passed resolutions condemning declawing—protecting about 8 million cats total—with the persuasion of Dr. Jennifer Conrad, a veterinarian to many animal “stars” in Hollywood and founder of The Paw Project, an animal welfare advocacy nonprofit that is dedicated to relieving suffering from the declawing of cats and educating the public about the crippling effects of declawing. Conrad has also repaired over 70 exotic cats’ paws throughout Southern California.

“Our goal is to make veterinary medicine more like pediatric medicine and have veterinarians advocate for their patients instead of causing undue suffering by performing surgeries that have no benefit to the animal patient,” Conrad said.

The Paw Project found that within the 25 to 43 percent of American households that get their house cats declawed, the main reason is to keep the animal from tearing up the furniture or causing bodily harm to people. About 76 percent are declawed before they are 8-months-old. However, studies have shown that cats that are declawed can develop behavioral problems, such as biting.

“The Paw Project makes an effort to educate the public about non-therapeutic, deleterious surgeries and we hope that they will demand that their vets don't perform surgeries like declawing,” Conrad said.

But just as cities were passing resolutions, things came to a halt. In 2009, the California Veterinary Medical Association—which supports the practice of cat declawing throughout the state—sponsored SB 792 that prohibits other California cities from passing resolutions condemning cat declawing. Gov. Schwarzenegger signed the bill and it went into effect in 2010.
Because of the state law, the City of Carpinteria is preempted from passing a resolution against the act, according to City Manager Dave Durflinger. Since the law took effect, no other cities have enacted bans against declawing.

“They (The Paw Project) are well aware of limitations on local government,” said Durflinger.

However, the city is sensitive to residents’ concerns.

“The councilmembers want to try and help constituents that have particular issues, and they have a great deal of empathy for concerned residents of cat declawing,” Durflinger said.

According to Durflinger, the city helped by having Mayor Stein write a letter to Assemblymember Das Williams and Senator Hannah Beth Jackson in July.

“…I am hopeful that you can assist our concerned constituents by looking into this matter and advising them on how they may most effectively engage state regulators and influence the process through which these type of veterinary procedures are considered,” Stein wrote.

“We advise our local residents that the most effective way we can help is by working directly with our state representatives,” Durflinger emphasized.

Carpinteria’s two veterinary clinics, Animal Medical Clinic and Carpinteria Veterinary Hospital, each has one veterinarian that performs declawing, although both have expressed that they haven’t performed the procedure in a very long time. They even offer nail caps to prevent scratching.

“Most veterinarians don’t explain the process, and I tend to try and discourage it and go over everything with the owner,” said Dr. M. Scott Smith, veterinarian at Animal Medical Clinic. Smith said he has declawed about 16 different cats in his 25 years as a practiced veterinarian.

Since the passing of SB 762, The Paw Project has been active in other legislation to help felines. In 2012, Gov. Brown signed into law the first bill prohibiting landlords from requiring tenants to declaw or devocalize their animals. The Paw Project was a co-sponsor along with the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association.

With their determination to educating the public, The Paw Project still has hope for California. “I believe that the State of California will one day prohibit declawing,” Conrad said.

Cate girls advance to finals: Team notches sweeps in quarters and semis

Cate girls advance to finals: Team notches sweeps in quarters and semis
Hannah Barr was one of several strong servers who led the Rams to 11 aces in their semifinal victory. (Photo by Bill Swing)

By Dan Terry
Volleyball editors

With a decisive 25-10, 25-8, 25-15 home win over Summit High School on Nov. 18, Cate School girls volleyball will ascend to the CIF Southern Section Finals for the first time since 1992. In a match that Cate had anticipated would go five games, coach Greg Novak deemed the semifinal victory the team’s best performance of the season. “We’ve been really working on consistent, strong serving,” commented Novak, and it paid dividends with 11 aces on the night, seven of which came from outside hitter Delaney Mayfield.

Cate’s ball control throughout the match was also impeccable, marking a 2.1 team passing percentage, anchored by Libero Sumner Mathews (2.71). With the deadly combination of tough serving and excellent ball control, Cate’s hitters were able to collect an incredible number of kills (42) with an exceptionally high hitting percentage (.412) for a three game match. The kill-core was led by outside Peyton Shelburne, opposite Maddie Becker and Mayfield.

Summit’s 6’2” middle blocker, Jordan Wilson was able to crack Cate’s shell a bit while she was in the front row, but each game, Cate was able to capitalize when she rotated into the back row. While Wilson was live in the front, it took some clever play calling by Cate setter Hannah Barr to get around the big block by effectively sending middle blocker Xadrine Griffin to collect kills on the back slide.

This victory sends Cate to the CIF finals to face off against Duarte High School at Cerritos College on Friday, Nov. 21, at 5 p.m. With packed stands, Cate’s fans, aka “Blue Crew,” really turned it up to 11 for this critical match and have a lot to cheer for next week. “Our crowd support has been growing steadily throughout the year, and it really peaked for us today. Everyone is really excited about our success this year,” added Novak.

Quarterfinal keeps Rams perfect at Bishop Conaty-Loretto
Cate School traveled to Los Angeles to play Bishop-Conaty Loretto in the CIF quarterfinals and picked up a 3-0 victory, 25-15, 25-15, 27-25. Cate coach Greg Novak commented that the team had no scouting report on Loretto so it had to adopt a strategy and adjust according to in-game observations. Novak said the team grew frustrated early at Loretto’s strong defensive and digging ability. “The Rams realized that patience would pay off in the rallies and tipping was not an option. Staying aggressive, continuing to attack and finding new areas on the court was the game plan,” Novak commented.

Part of developing an attack to get through Loretto came from Peyton Shelburne’s angle shots, including a couple cross-court strikes at Loretto’s three-foot line.

The third set was rockier than the first two for the Rams, who uncharacteristically surrendered 18 unforced errors. Cate fell behind 22-20, but survived several match points. At 26-25 Shelburne was able to close out the match with a kill down line.

Novak commended the passing of Hannah Bowlin, Maddie Becker and Sumner Matthews. Sophomore Delaney Mayfield collected 14 kills while Shelburne collected 19 and Becker added 13.

"The Coastal View Blues"

"The Coastal View Blues"

by the Man on the Street, Larry Nimmer.

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