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DELANO RAMBLINGS: City Council eyes fund to help immigrants, awards contracts

The Delano City Council at its Sept. 7 meeting discussed the possibility of establishing an $80,000 account to assist immigrants in the community in regard to citizenship.

Mayor Bryan Osorio and Juan Diego Hernandez provided a proposal to the council in support of a letter from California Rural Legal Assistance.

When the council convenes again on Sept. 20, the fund is expected to come up for a vote and is likely to pass.

Veteran City Council members Liz Morris and Joey Alindajao moved and seconded a motion at a recent meeting to appoint past City Council member Grace Vallejo to the city planning commission.

That motion was defeated, 3-2, by the three City Council members voted into office in November 2020.

Then with only Morris casting a no vote, Valerie Gorospe was voted 4-1 to the planning group.

Appointed by Mayor Bryan Osorio to the city pension committee was Connie Perez-Andreesen.

The council approved a partnership with the Bakersfield College Foundation to establish a Delano Community Scholarship program of $50,000 that will offer scholarships to high school students of Delano.

Approved by the council with unanimous votes were the 2020 Urban Water Management Plan and 2020 Water Shortage Contingency Plan.

The council gave its approval to five contracts to be awarded for city improvement plans.

A $1,358,896 contract was given to Bowman Asphalt Inc. for a local streets and roads pavement resurfacing and rehabilitation project and a $913,189 project for a 2021 Albany Street and Cecil Avenue pavement resurfacing and rehabilitation project.

DOD Construction was awarded a $462,846 contract for an intersection enhancement and improvement project.

American Asphalt South Inc. was awarded a $679,010 contract for the Delano Municipal Airport slurry seal improvement project.

J. L. Plank Inc. was given a $401,508 contract for a project involving 22 pedestrian crossings.

The council approved an agreement with Save Moves to provide school traffic safety education and public outreach services for the Safe Routes to School intersection enhancement and education project at various schools in Delano.

Also at the Sept. 7 council meeting, the council accepted a $500 donation from Wonderful Company Foundation for the community and crime prevention events.

The council also passed a resolution that authorized an all-ways stop control at the intersection of 11th Avenue and Fremont Street.

An agreement gained City Council support for the purchase and sale and joint escrow instructions with the Bervel Family Trust for 198.91 acres of farmland for expansion of wastewater treatment plant effluent disposal farm for $5,100,000.

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The Tiny Tots program launching Delano’s Harvest Holidays events is to take place today.

Still planned for a public event is the 76th annual Harvest Holidays queen scholarship program, which this year will have added an king selection as well.

Tickets for the September queen and king show in the Delano High School auditorium are on sale for $10 each.

Queen candidates and their parents and sponsors follow:

Tiffani Ann Mata, Robert and Janet Mata, Delano Elks Lodge sponsoring; Kayla Zuniga, Joe and Diana Zuniga, Dr. Greg and Maria Hirokawa sponsoring; KarmenDee Rodriguez, Victor and Erin Rodriguez and Diana Marshall, Elmer’s Drive-In sponsoring; Avery Herrera, Gabriel and Gloria Herrera, Taco Factory sponsoring; Aubrey Ruanto, Mark and Leslie Ruanto, State Farm Insurance sponsoring; Katherine Cardenas, Jesus and Nayeli Cardenas, General’s Café sponsoring; Hannah Villaruz, Nelson and Elma Villaruz, Tino’s Menswear sponsoring; and Gurnoor Bhatti, Harjit and Ranbir Bhatti, sponsored by Delano Soroptimists.

The four king candidates seeking the first-ever Harvest King title are Morrison Dobere, Ibrahima Diallo and Richelle Carino, Rochma Contracting; Julio Gutierrez, Julio Gutierrez and Yoana Fernandez, Delano Kiwanis Club; Efren Quinones, Efren Quinones and Perla Renteria, Studio 661 and Ferney Jiv Jitsy sponsoring; and Karanbir Sunner, Harjinder and Sukhdeep Sunne, sponsor pending.

Directors of Harvest Holidays are selling tickets for $15 to the annual royalty and Grand Marshal barbecue planned Saturday, Oct. 9, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the First Assembly of God Church on 9th Avenue. For the second year due to the pandemic, the event will be a takeout event. Those who purchase tickets the day of the barbecue will pay $20 for the meal of ribs, rice pilaf, a roll and salad.

Delano Elis Lodge No. 1761 will host the District Deputy, Grand Exalted Ruler Ben Drake of Reedley, for his visit Sept. 29.

For the annual fall Dallas Night, the tickets were sold out in July, the Elks bulletin reports.

Persons still interested in a ticket should contact the Elks office or Elk Louis Pandol.

The Elks Lodge has begun its opening for Monday Night football with food and fun starting Sept. 13.

Elks Lodge is still seeking sponsors and/or groups of members.

Bulletin editor Anthony (Tonky) Zaninovich emphasized in the bulletin that the lodge is much in need of events, bookings and patronage.

The bulletin also reported the loss of “our very loyal and dedicated members,” Barbara Lingenfelter and Roger Blankenship, who have moved to Oklahoma.

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It was Aug. 24 that Delano High School 1938 graduate Mervin Morris passed away.

He is one of the school’s most famous graduates. After service in the Army during World War II and working for the Army in the post exchange in San Francisco, he moved into private life and after a short stay at UCLA he worked briefly for his father in Delano’s Morris’ Department Store.

Then Mervin Morris opened a store in the Bay Area and expanded Mervyn’s to a chain of stores that was at one time on the stock exchange before Mervin Morris sold out his chain of stores.

I was fortunate to sit at the same table as Morris and wife and Mervin’s brother-in-law, Mort Slater, and wife at the 100-year anniversary dinner for Delano High School held at the Bakersfield Petroleum Club in 2011.

Morris celebrated his 101st birthday on July 1 of this year, it was reported to me by Dr. Dennis Sheehan, a 1968 DHS graduate. Sheehan after two years as an all-valley football center went on to become first string at Stanford University before attending medical school.

Sheehan said that at last report Morris was still going to his office in San Francisco to continue as an investment advisor.