FILLMORE : Council Withdraws Support for Jail Site
The Fillmore City Council has withdrawn its endorsement of a proposed site for the new county jail on Todd Lane in response to an urgent plea from the mayor of Santa Paula.
The council voted 3 to 2 Tuesday to withdraw its endorsement of the Todd Lane site, situated in a greenbelt west of Santa Paula.
The council then voted unanimously to oppose a jail on Toland Road, which is in a different greenbelt between Fillmore and Santa Paula.
The result of the actions is that Fillmore has not endorsed any of the five proposed sites. Fillmore Councilman Roger Campbell said the Board of Supervisors is scheduled to select a jail site Tuesday.
The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, which is trying to reduce severe jail overcrowding, prefers the Todd Lane site.
The existing jail in Ventura houses 1,100 inmates in a building designed for 400 prisoners.
“Unless the Sheriff’s Department asked you to take a stand, I don’t understand why you did this,” said Santa Paula Mayor Kay Wilson, who left a school board meeting to visit the Fillmore council and plead her case.
Wilson said Fillmore was the only city in Ventura County to take a position on one of the five sites studied for the new jail.
Wilson said she was concerned about future expansion of the new jail, which, she said, could adversely affect surrounding agriculture and air quality countywide.
Fillmore Mayor John Murphy said the council erroneously supported the Todd Lane site because of “a lack of information.”