Innovative county teachers honored

More than a dozen teachers across Ventura County have been honored for innovation in the classroom, receiving $13,000 in grants for developing lesson plans for students.

At a ceremony in Oxnard on Wednesday, May 9, the Ventura County Office of Education presented 22 IMPACT II grants to 30 teachers from 12 schools in eight local districts.

The grants are funded by area businesses and organizations that “wish to promote unique and creative teaching practices,” according to the Office of Education.

Winners are selected by judging teams, and entries cover a wide variety of subject matters, including history, science and civics.

Some teachers chosen for the award include Rio Mesa High School’s Carrie Fong and her lesson plan, “Growing Plants to Study Inheritance, Botany and Plant Life Cycle,” and Anacapa Middle School’s team of Danna Lomax, Mike Adame, Heather Carr, Jennifer Figueroa for “Trauma, Teenagers, and the Thomas Fire.”

The full lesson plans for all winners will be posted online and may be viewed by visiting

Oxnard urges businesses to “Do Your Thing,” be more green

The Oxnard City Council has adopted a resolution drafted by Energy Update California dubbed “Do Your Thing,” aiming to motivate residents to become “good energy stewards.”

EUC is a statewide initiative under the umbrella of the California Public Utilities Commission created to educate and motivate residents on energy management. The “Do Your Thing” initiative aims to educate individuals and businesses to do one thing that would eventually become a habit, such as turning off lights when not in use, unplugging unused appliances and/or switching to LED light bulbs.

The council adopted the resolution in support of the statewide effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030, a goal set forth in Senate Bill 350, “Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015.”

The resolution is estimated to have no financial impact on the fiscal year 2017-2018 budget, but turning off lights when not in use could reduce one’s energy bill.

Ventura makes 13 arrests during vagrant sweep

The Ventura Police Department conducted a sweep for vagrants violating the law on Wednesday, May 9, weeks after furor erupted over the death of a man in the city at the hands of a known vagrant.

Police say that they made 13 arrests between the hours of noon and 4 p.m. Four arrests were made for being under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, one arrest was made for possession of a controlled substance or paraphernalia, and one felony arrest was made for being in possession of a controlled substance and a dangerous weapon. Six were arrested for probation violations; one was arrested and charged with a felony for being in possession of a stolen vehicle.

The arrests were made in the downtown area, including at Mission Park and the Ventura Promenade.

On Wednesday, April 18, 35-year-old Anthony Mele Jr., was murdered while dining at a Ventura Promenade restaurant. Known vagrant Jamal Jackson, 49, was arrested in connection with the incident. Since then, several demonstrations have been held in the city demanding that action be taken to address a perceived growing homeless population and rise in crime.

Bike to Work Day celebrated with pit stops in Ventura

If you’re up bright and early this morning, Thursday, May 17, hop on your bike and hit the official pit stop for a quick snack, simple tuneup and giveaways.

The Transportation Department Bike Station at the corner of California and Santa Clara streets will be operating from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. For more information, visit