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Latest News in Lemoore, CA
Olam to sell off Lemoore tomato plant | John Lindt
The Lemoore Planning Commission will conduct a public hearing at its Special Meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23 to consider and accept public comment for Tentative Parcel Map No. 2021-03: a request by Olam West Coast, Inc. to divide a developed 24.95-acre parcel into two parcels. The project site is located at 1175 S. 19th Avenue.Planning staff say Olam wants to retain 10 acres of the processing plant site to continue its granulated garlic business but sell off the northern 15-acre tomato processing side of the business.&rdqu...
The Lemoore Planning Commission will conduct a public hearing at its Special Meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23 to consider and accept public comment for Tentative Parcel Map No. 2021-03: a request by Olam West Coast, Inc. to divide a developed 24.95-acre parcel into two parcels. The project site is located at 1175 S. 19th Avenue.
Planning staff say Olam wants to retain 10 acres of the processing plant site to continue its granulated garlic business but sell off the northern 15-acre tomato processing side of the business.
”It would be major priority for the community to regain those jobs," says Olson. Olam is an international food company, based in Singapore.
Grape prices were up in 2021
USDA says the 2021 grape crush totaled 3,858,841 tons, up 8.7% from the 2020 crush of 3,551,312 tons. Red wine varieties accounted for the largest share of all grapes crushed, at 2,016,959 tons, up 10.7% from 2020. White wine varieties crushed totaled 1,596,051 tons, up 0.3% from 2020. Tons crushed of raisin type varieties totaled 137,959, up 225% from 2020, and tons crushed of table type varieties totaled 107,872, up 13.2% from 2020.
The 2021 average price of all varieties was $848.42, up 24.8% from 2020. Average prices for the 2021 crop by type were as follows: red wine grapes, $1.055.18, up 32.4% from 2020; white wine grapes, $668.89, up 19.7% from 2020; raisin grapes, $292.23, up 16.6% from 2020; and table grapes, $183.12, up 14.6% from 2020.
Although the prices are lowest for varieties grown in the Central Valley, it makes up the largest volume of the wine varieties.
Auto club plans regional service hub in Visalia — 284 jobs
Visalia developer Butch Oldfield has filed a site plan for the Automobile Club of Southern California who would locate a regional office and service hub in the Visalia Industrial Park employing 284 workers.
The complex would service travelers in the Central Valley 24 hours a day with tow service, tire needs, collision repair as well as insurance needs, all from a central location.
Oldfield owns the nearly 7-acre vacant parcel at Kelsey and Crowley, just north of the former Jostens building, now owned by Oldfield. He would build a small campus of buildings to house each service line for the Auto Club.
The six-week dry spell may finally come to an end Feb 21 through the end of the month, a number of forecast models agree. A persistent blocking high off the coast has kept any precipitation from falling this new year.
Carrier Air Wing changes command at NAS Lemoore
Donald A. Promnitz email@example.com://hanfordsentinel.com/news/local/carrier-air-wing-changes-command-at-nas-lemoore/article_442186d2-136e-5e10-801f-1cfc887d2bf3.html
In the skies above Naval Air Station Lemoore, two F/A-18 fighter jets flew above the hangars. Over the radio, the conversation between the pilots — both captains — could be heard.The exchange was a relief of command between the previous commander of Carrier Air Wing 17, Capt. Todd Cimicata and the man who would take his place, Capt. Christopher Hurst.“I relieve you sir,” Hurst said in the air.“I stand relieved,” Cimicata replied.The two officers made one more flyby of the hangar...
In the skies above Naval Air Station Lemoore, two F/A-18 fighter jets flew above the hangars. Over the radio, the conversation between the pilots — both captains — could be heard.
The exchange was a relief of command between the previous commander of Carrier Air Wing 17, Capt. Todd Cimicata and the man who would take his place, Capt. Christopher Hurst.
“I relieve you sir,” Hurst said in the air.
“I stand relieved,” Cimicata replied.
The two officers made one more flyby of the hangar where personnel and families where gathered. And just like that, the torch had been passed.
Cimicata had been in command of CVW-17, or “Team Quicksand,” since 2018, and led the unit through an 11-month tour of duty aboard the U.S.S. Nimitz, ending last February. This would prove to be the longest U.S. Navy deployment since the Vietnam War, and Team Quicksand would log 24,318 hours of flying time, providing air support in Operations Inherent Resolve, Freedom’s Sentinel and Octane Quartz. Cimicata would be in command of eight squadrons, consisting of 2,400 sailors and 82 aircraft, leading them through the pandemic and achieving zero positive cases throughout the deployment. In recognition of his leadership, he was awarded the Legion of Merit upon landing.
During the farewell speech to the men and women under his command, Cimicata reflected on his service, the issues faced by his fellow pilots and why he serves.
“I’ve also seen in recent months a lot of focus on what’s wrong with aviation today,” Cimicata said. “Why are people getting and out what are people doing wrong? There’s some value in that discussion, but there’s also some danger if we lose total sight of what’s good.”
The outgoing commander cited three things in particular he hoped would never change: Camaraderie, commitment to excellence, and love of country.
“And sprinkled among all of that is the right to be called a ‘patriot,’” He said. “Someone who is not blind to the faults of the nation, but believes in the values so deeply that you are compelled to acts of sacrifice and heroism.”
Hurst served alongside Cimicata throughout the entire tour. Upon assuming command, he praised the hard work of CVW-17 in their deployment. However, he also remarked that operations were still scheduled in the Pacific for November.
“We have a tough and busy year ahead, and we will need to be at the top of our game come November,” Hurst said.
Lemoore cheer coach wins award in Vegas
ERIC GILL firstname.lastname@example.org://hanfordsentinel.com/news/local/lemoore-cheer-coach-wins-award-in-vegas/article_abf12757-1e88-5f5d-898f-413fede40b7c.html
Page owns Cali Heat in Lemoore. She took top honors as the owner/coach of Cali Heat, a local cheerleading and gymnastics private school."They only give out one of those awards," Page said, referring to the trophy she received at Jamz DII in Las Vegas over this year' President's Day holiday.Page, who's originally from Meridian, Miss., took home the Spirit Award for her "integrity, enthusiasm and passion for the sport of all-star cheerleading and dance.""It's an event that we attend every year,&quo...
Page owns Cali Heat in Lemoore. She took top honors as the owner/coach of Cali Heat, a local cheerleading and gymnastics private school.
"They only give out one of those awards," Page said, referring to the trophy she received at Jamz DII in Las Vegas over this year' President's Day holiday.
Page, who's originally from Meridian, Miss., took home the Spirit Award for her "integrity, enthusiasm and passion for the sport of all-star cheerleading and dance."
"It's an event that we attend every year," said the seasoned cheerleading coach. "We've been attending for like nine years."
Although she's proud to have won the award as owner/coach of Cali Heat, Page is even more excited about the performances of her students from the Central Valley.
"This year, we had two teams that received third place [honors]," she said of Jamz DII in Vegas, noting members of the teams she coaches also received awards for fifth and sixth place.
Cali Heat All-star teams Ignite, Sunrays, Fire and Supernovas all received awards at the Jamz Nationals, where 450 teams and 6,000 athletes competed.
"We're a competitive cheerleading team, so each team is at a different age group and ability level," Page explained, describing students she coaches.
"We actually moved five years ago from Hanford to Lemoore," she said of Cali Heat. "The majority of our kids are from Hanford and Lemoore, but we do have a handful of kids who commute from Visalia and Tulare, as well."
Page's home is actually in Hanford, where she moved with her husband in 2012. Travis Page is a Lt. Commander in the U.S. Navy.
"I'm originally from Mississippi and my husband is in the Navy," she said. "We got stationed here in 2012. We keep requesting to stay out here because of my husband's job and my business."
Page moved Cali Heat to Lemoore because she found an ideal facility in town, she said.
"There just aren't that many facilities that meet our needs," Page explained, pointing to a gym with a high ceiling and spring floor with carpet-bonded foam-top as necessities.
She found such a facility in Lemoore.
"I have an average of 100 kids that come to our program weekly," she said, explaining some students attend for specific lessons, while others participate in team competitions.
Cali Heat charges $70 to $175 a month per student, depending on frequency of lessons.
Lobos take a Holaday: Former Lemoore High standout playing for New Mexico
CHRIS AGUIRRE Contributing Writerhttps://hanfordsentinel.com/sports/college/lobos-take-a-holaday-former-lemoore-high-standout-playing-for-new-mexico/article_7923d96e-2901-586e-bc14-82fb95e89fd0.html
The New Mexico Lobos football team opened fall camp on August 5th with a familiar name for Kings County football fans competing for the starting quarterback position.Justin Holaday, former Lemoore High Tigers standout, is in contention to become the starting quarterback for the Lobos during the 2022 season. Holaday transferred to New Mexico from Fresno City College where he played for two seasons. He played his freshman year for the Rams after the pandemic cut his first season short.At Fresno City College, Holaday, a 2020 gradu...
The New Mexico Lobos football team opened fall camp on August 5th with a familiar name for Kings County football fans competing for the starting quarterback position.
Justin Holaday, former Lemoore High Tigers standout, is in contention to become the starting quarterback for the Lobos during the 2022 season. Holaday transferred to New Mexico from Fresno City College where he played for two seasons. He played his freshman year for the Rams after the pandemic cut his first season short.
At Fresno City College, Holaday, a 2020 graduate of Lemoore High, played in 11 games completing 58 percent of his passes throwing for 1,821 yards and 18 touchdowns. He also rushed for 391 yards with 10 touchdowns.
Holaday said that he has the confidence he thinks he needs to become the quarterback for the Lobos when they open the season on Saturday, Sept. 3 against Maine in Albuquerque.
“I got to show the coaches that I know the offense good enough to play and compete and lead the team,” Holaday said. “I must show the coaches that I can do it. I played a whole year at a really good level of Junior College football, and I think that is a strength that I have. “I am a hard worker. I am tough. I am going to have fun but at same time and work my butt off. Hopefully I can show them that I am here to work, and we all start becoming better.”
For Holaday, playing Division I football was not a thought until his sophomore year in high school. He was a baseball and basketball player at first, before deciding to play football as a way to join his friends on the field.
“If as a junior in high school you told me I was going to be playing at the University of New Mexico for football, I would have said no way,” Holaday said. “This is crazy to me. But after my senior year of football, I think I want to go try this thing out. Let’s go do this and try to play at the highest level I can.”
Holaday’s older brother played college baseball at Fresno State in 2019, which is something that Justin said was a motivating factor for him going forward.
“It is always a competition between me and my brother. I was like, ‘let’s go do better than him’,” Holaday said. “When I had the chance to go play at Fresno City and coach said you could go play Division I football. I took a chance on myself. I went and I did, and it worked out. It does drive me. But he is my friend, and he has experienced playing sports at a high level. I lean on him.”
Holaday said that representing Lemoore is something that he looks forward to doing at the University of New Mexico.
“It’s mind boggling. Still today, everyday I go to practice I am living my dream,” Holaday said. “I am from a small farm town. Everyone asks where it’s at and I have to say Fresno. Going back home for the past week, seeing my friends they are happy for me. It is a cool experience. We have had some big-time players, David Ausberry, Lorenzo Neal come out of Lemoore. It has been a while since a player has come out of there and done something. Hopefully I can do good and put on a show and put Lemoore on the map.”
Lemoore shows the way on gas prices | John Lindt
Can anybody do something about these gas prices? Let the gas merchants in Lemoore run the show. Lemoore's Fastrip is the cheapest station to buy gasoline in all of California at $5.21 gallon as of July 6. Gas prices across the U.S. have dropped in the past week.As of July 6, crude prices are down to $98 a barrel compared to a high of $120 a barrel just a few weeks ago. Chevron’s posted crude oil price in California has dropped into the $90s this week for the first time since February.According to GasBuddy, the latest Ener...
Can anybody do something about these gas prices? Let the gas merchants in Lemoore run the show. Lemoore's Fastrip is the cheapest station to buy gasoline in all of California at $5.21 gallon as of July 6. Gas prices across the U.S. have dropped in the past week.
As of July 6, crude prices are down to $98 a barrel compared to a high of $120 a barrel just a few weeks ago. Chevron’s posted crude oil price in California has dropped into the $90s this week for the first time since February.
According to GasBuddy, the latest Energy Information Administration data says gas demand currently sits at 8.93 million b/d, which is lower than last year’s rate of 9.11 million b/d at the end of June. On the other hand, total domestic gasoline stocks increased by 2.6 million bbl to 221.6 million bbl. These supply/demand dynamics, along with decreasing oil prices, have pushed pump prices lower. If these trends continue, drivers will likely continue to see lower prices at the pump.
Now there is some relief from Sacramento.
Diesel fuelers will catch a break from the state’s sales tax as of October. Suspension of the state diesel tax will save about 23 cents a gallon. As for gasoline users, 23 million Californians will benefit from Sacramento direct payments of up to $1,050. The tax refunds would be distributed starting in October.
Friant will get bump in allocation
Bureau of Reclamation spokesperson Mary Lee Knecht confirms reports the agency will increase the allocation for Friant contractors above 15% later this month.
"Delta supplies are expected to improve this summer due to late season precipitation throughout much of Northern California; as a result, Reclamation is considering an update to allocations for the Friant Division in mid-July."
Buttonwillow Warehouse continues growth
The Kings EDC says Buttonwillow Warehouse Co in Corcoran continues to expand. The family-owned business has more than 50 years of experience serving California growers. BWC arrived in Corcoran in the year 2000 with a purchase of a grain warehouse in the Corcoran Industrial Park along the BNSF Railway. Since that time, they have purchased the CDR and Homac Buildings, and purchased the Mercury/Seward Building in the past year adding over 150,000 s.f. to their Corcoran holdings and increasing their employment significantly.
Kings EDC president Lance Lippincott says Kings Country is a finalist in plans to locate a large anaerobic digester project in the Valley and the company is scouting for locations here now. Statewide, studies indicate that California could produce almost 300 billion cubic feet of renewable natural gas per year from organic waste, enough to replace 75 percent of all the diesel fuel used by motor vehicles in California.
Following the $97.5 billion state budget surplus, California lawmakers last week agreed to spend $4.2 billion in bond funds needed to finish the ambitious high-speed rail project's 171-mile Central Valley portion which is expected to connect Bakersfield with Merced through Hanford by 2030, according to the agency's current estimates.
State budget includes $40M for Allensworth
The recently passed California state budget includes millions in new funding for the historical Tulare County community of Allensworth, which was founded by Black settlers in 1908. Based on the idea that African Americans could own property, learn, thrive and live the American Dream, it was named for Lt. Colonel Allen Allensworth.
The funds include:
Colonel Allensworth State Park: Approves $28 million to build a visitor center and requires the Department of Parks and Recreation to conduct community engagement efforts to consult with stakeholders in the planning and design of the visitors center and related improvements.
Allensworth: Provides $12 million total to create the Allensworth Civic & Entrepreneurship Center ($1.6 million) and to expand TAC Teaching & Innovation Farm ($10 million). Authorizes the Department of Parks and Recreation to give “free days” access to the Colonel Allensworth State Park over the next three years.
According to Fresno County Farm Bureau CEO, Ryan Jacobsen, the tomato crop is less than expected because of the drought, at 6.9% below forecasts, according to Central Valley News.
The prospect of harvesting 2.8 billion pounds of almonds this year — just shy of the 2.9 billion pounds in 2021 and the record 3.1 billion pounds in 2020 — has industry leaders both excited and worried. That’s because about 1.3 billion pounds of unsold almonds are still sitting in piles at processing and packing facilities. The problem comes at a time when inflation and a historic drought are pushing the costs of production and water supplies to an all-time high, and the price of almonds has fallen to an all-time low of about $2 per pound. It’s a sharp reversal for the industry after four decades of relentless expansion across 1.6 million acres in California’s agricultural Central Valley, according to the LA Times.
Valley watermelon farmers are anticipating a booming business this summer. Watermelon prices for the San Joaquin Valley crop are running ahead of last year's pace, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Marketing Service. As of June 30, a 35-count carton of valley seedless watermelons was selling for $150 to $154, while the 45-count carton went for $158 to $161. That's up $119 to $126 from June 2021.
Seedless miniatures — "personal size" — were going for $12.95 to $13.95 for cartons of six- to nine-count melons at the end of June 2022, according to USDA. Last year, the price was $8.95 to $10.95 per carton of six- to eight-count melons.
Growers say oversupply was a factor in last year's market, noting that 2021 was a lower-price, lower-volume year, according to ag alert.
Kaweah Health budget projects $11.2 million loss
Like other hospitals across California, the Kaweah Delta Health Care District (Kaweah Health) Board of Directors has approved their 2023 operating budget with an operating loss for the coming fiscal year – the first time in Kaweah Health’s history. The new budget, which becomes effective July 1, projects an operating loss of $11.2 million for the fiscal year and it comes on the heels of a projected $17.9 million, COVID-driven operating loss for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2022 ($35.8 million operating loss less $17.9 million in provider relief funds received from the CARES Act and American Rescue Plan Act). Despite the financial challenges, the Board and CEO say they are holding firm on providing annual employee pay increases and are unwilling to reduce employee benefits or to limit access to care.
“We are a compassionate and grateful organization. We want to continue to be a great place to work and we want to continue to attract and retain the very best employees to care for our community. The South Valley is already underserved medically, and we decided against closing services and further reducing access to care, even if some of those services lose money,” said Gary Herbst, Kaweah Health’s Chief Executive Officer. “While we have cash reserves to cover a bad year or two, it reduces our ability to invest in facilities and equipment, as well as our ability to borrow money. These losses are not sustainable in the long term.”
Kaweah Health is not alone. More than 51 percent of California hospitals are losing money. According to a recent study conducted by national consulting firm Kaufman Hall, California hospitals lost more than $20 billion in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID. These losses were only partially offset by $8 billion in Federal provider relief funds.