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VENTURA COUNTY NEWSWATCH

November 16, 1994|Adrianne Goodman

SOWING THE CROPS: The amount of agricultural land in the U.S. declined from about 965 million acres in 1987 to 946 million acres in 1992, according to a new U.S. census report. . . . During that same period, the acreage of crops harvested rose from 282 million to 296 million. . . . In Ventura County, more than 500 farms had annual sales of $100,000 or more. The number of residents earning their full-time living from the farms they own was 947, while 1,248 farm owners had income from other jobs.

ALL WORK, NO PLAY: As college fees skyrocket, working students say they're struggling more than ever just to stay in school (Life & Style, Page E1). . . . For many, activities beyond the classroom are out of the question. In Ventura County, the money crunch was probably a factor last spring when Chi-Young Choe was appointed student trustee to the board of the community college district after no one else came forward. Too many students work and can't make the time commitment, Choe said. "Unfortunately, often what it comes down to is that paycheck."

LEGAL LIMBO: Parts of Proposition 187 may be tied up in the courts for years--and may be decided only after state or U.S. Supreme Court rulings on the measure's legality, legal experts say (A1). . . . Meanwhile, Ventura County officials have decided--at least for now--to continue to provide public services to illegal immigrants.(B1)

NEW WING: The issue of Proposition 187 has turned up as a factor in the proposed $51-million expansion of Ventura County Medical Center (B1). . . . Critics of the expansion say the extra space may not be needed if illegal immigrants are denied medical care. . . . The issue came up during the expansion in Saticoy of Clinicas del Camino Real, which provides health care to low-income residents. Said Executive Director Robert S. Juarez: "It's going to be an issue in any health-care expansion project."

Bountiful Harvest

The number of acres harvested from Ventura County's farms over the past two decades:

1974: 103,648

1978: 111,013

1982: 113,484

1987: 107,269

1992: 107,157

Source: Bureau of the Census

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