The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office provides police services to the City of Ojai under an agreement that is over 40 years old. On July 9, 2020, the City of Ojai requested an updated contract and lease with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office. The City met with County Executive Office and/or Ventura County Sheriff’s Office staff on July 12, July 29, and again on September 18 to discuss the unique issues within Ojai and the need for the update. The City then submitted a written request on November 18, 2020, further emphasizing the need for an update.
On December 30, 2020, the County of Ventura committed in a letter to City of Ojai officials from Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub and Ventura County Chief Executive Officer Michael Powers, to update the City’s contract for police services and lease agreement for the Ojai Police Station. The letter acknowledged that the agreements had not been updated for many years, but did not specify potential terms or conditions. The City will strive to work towards a new contract and lease agreement that meets the City’s needs and reflects the unique nature of Ojai as the smallest contract City in Ventura County.
The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office provides police services to five contract cities, as well as the unincorporated area of Ventura County. The five contract cities (with estimated police services budgets listed for each City) are: Thousand Oaks ($33.7 million), Camarillo ($18.1 million), Moorpark ($7.7 million), Fillmore ($3.8 million) and Ojai ($3.4 million). The City of Ojai currently purchases the minimum level of service allowed by the Sheriff’s and Ventura County’s policies. The City of Ojai is the smallest city in Ventura County, at 4.3 square miles and 7,500 residents, and pays the highest per capita cost for police services under the existing agreement.