Many recognitions at City Council meeting
There was a full house at Tuesday evening's City Council meeting, and the buzz of conversation was heavy until Mayor Milt Stowe signaled the beginning of the meeting with his gavel.
Soon, the room quieted, and City Attorney Julia Lew announced that there was nothing to report from the Council's closed session.
Council Member Cameron Hamilton led the Pledge of Allegiance, which was followed by a moment of silence.
Four presentations were scheduled for the meeting, and the first ofthe four began shortly after the moment of silence.
Miss Porterville and her court filed to the front of the room in glamorous ball gowns. Third princess Samantha Rainey, second princess Mackinzie Thomason and first princess Therese Salinas stood in front of the Council dressed in striking blue. Senior princess, Gwendalyn Garcia, stood in vivid red, and Miss Porterville, Darcy Sarr, stood proudly in all white.
Each princess received roses and a certificate from an individual Council representative before turning to face the audience, who hurriedly snapped pictures.
Sarr addressed the Council after plenty of photos had been taken.
“Thank you for this honor,” said Sarr. “It's such a blessing to be Miss Porterville, and to represent Porterville until next year. I feel so privileged to represent such a small but wonderful little town.”
Following Miss Porterville and her court, Jenni Byers, the city's community development director, presented Agricare, a local farm management business, with an award for being an outstanding business in the community.
Brenna Benevidez, Agricare's chief administrative officer, gratefully accepted the glass trophy with swirls of brown and white, before thanking the Council.
“Thank you very much,” said Benevidez. “We absolutely love what we do, and love this city and our employees. We thank you very much, and hope to be in the city for many years to come.”
Council Member Brian Ward recognized Sarah Weaver as this month's city employee of the month. Weaver has worked for the city since December of 2004. She was instrumental in both the East Porterville Water Project and the Measure I sales tax measure.
Weaver is the team mom for the North side of City Hall, and often helps coordinate fund raisers and food drives
drives amongst many other events.
Weaver graciously accepted her award before returning to her seat in the audience.
Mayor Stowe finished up the night’s presentations with a special award honoring Richard Land’s service to the city. Land is currently the Batallion Chief of Operations for the Porterville Fire Department (PFD), and is head of the B-shift at Fire Station 1.
Land has been with PFD for 20 years, and quickly moved up the ranks in his fire career. Land was accompanied by the department’s Bshift, who applauded his service.
John Lollis, Porterville’s City Manager, gave a very brief report after the conclusion of the presentations. Lollis said that the County Board of Supervisors met and took action on one item. With a 5-0 vote, the Board of Supervisors approved the selling of the property on the corner of Main Street and Olive Avenue for the development of a three story building that will house offices and retail space.
Oral communications was opened at the end of the routine reports, and Yesenia Telis came forward to address the Council. Telis requested that the Council consider allowing a marijuana dispensary to open in town. She said that it could benefit many in the community, and generate a lot of revenue for the city.
She asked the Council to consider putting a dispensary measure on the
Because there were no scheduled matters or public hearings, the Council moved on to other matters. This is the time where members of the Council speak on matters of their choice.
First to speak was Council Member Martha Flores, who said she had a wonderful time walking in Monday night’s Christmas parade. She stated that she enjoyed seeing all of the people who went out to attend the annual event.
Council Member Hamilton followed Flores, and said that he also really enjoyed watching the Christmas parade, and was amazed by the floats that passed by him.
Hamilton also recognized Daniel Penaloza, who recently was voted in to the Council to represent District 1. Penaloza will be taking Hamilton’s seat starting at the next City Council meeting.
Council Member Monte Reyes echoed Flores, and stated that he too very much enjoyed walking in the parade on Monday.
Council Member Ward said that he is grateful for the recent rain that has been falling. Ward also congratulated Penaloza on winning the local election, and also congratulated Sergio Mendoza on his new position as Burton School District Superintendent.
Mayor Stowe wrapped up the meeting by reminding every one of the true meaning of Christmas, and stating that drivers need to be cautious of black ice on the roads. Stowe extended his own congratulations to Penaloza before adjourning the meeting.
The next City Council meeting is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 10 at 6 p.m. in the City Hall located at 291 N. Main Street.