Supervisor Parks said she could not understand the cities’ resistance to “More connectivity” that would benefit all.
Only Chairman Peter Foy supported the cities, noting that if they joined Gold Coast they would be only two votes out of 17, but Bennett reminded Foy that joining Gold Coast was not the issue supervisors were asked to take action on but rather VCTC being added to the Heritage Valley Transit agreement.
Cook’s letter to Fillmore was accompanied by a video so officials could observe the comments from individual supervisors that Cook wrote “caused myself, VCTC Commission Chairman Ralph Fernandez,” and the council, which Fernandez is a member of, “great concern.
“We wanted to make sure you were aware of the Board members comments,” which Cook wrote he “personally found improper and to a great extent condescending. They do not bode well in terms of our future working relationship with the Board of Supervisors.”
Cook noted that the council would discuss the issue at the December 16 meeting, and, “We will immediately notify you of our decision regarding the issue that is of such great importance to both our constituencies.”
Fontes told the council at the December 16 meeting that since the supervisors’ meeting the Fillmore council agreed to the plan proposed by the county, but “No councilmen were at the meeting and did not see the flavor of the meeting...”
And just hours before the Santa Paula council meeting a letter was received from Fillmore’s mayor noting that the council was not alarmed by Rowland’s update on the supervisors’ meeting.
Wrote Minjares, “...while the comments could be construed as inflammatory, we chose not to take them simply as instructive of the feelings of certain board members and their intent as to their position if VCTC did not concur in the cooperative proposal.”
Supervisors did note they would support the recommended action, which Minjares wrote would render their comments “moot” although “We also recognize that some board members are still frustrated,” that River Valley cities did not wish to joint Gold Coast.
“While reviewing the board’s comments and actions in this perspective,” Minjares wrote that Fillmore staff was directed to continue to work with all parties, “in a positive direction toward a better transit system for all our mutual constituents, as opposed to moving down a path toward possible litigation and dissension between public agencies, a path which we believe does not benefit any of those whom we represent.”
Fontes noted that Fernandez had other communications with Minjares that might have been more enlightening than statements made by Rowlands to the Fillmore council.
“I hear a different message,” than what was communicated in the letter said Fernandez, although at this point he is unsure where “Fillmore is” on some of the issues.
The council agreed to table the matter until January for a report from Fernandez.