UPDATE (November 15, 2017 5:00 a.m.): Overnight Arvin Mayor Jose Gurrola announced that Kern County Supervisor Leticia Perez made a donation to help save the annual Christmas parade.
According to Gurrola, Perez donated $5,000 to help cover costs for the parade and to keep it from cancellation.
"After the Chamber voted to refuse to pay the deposit and with the fear that my constituents and the Arvin community could see the parade cancelled, I decided to reach out to Supervisor Leticia Perez," said Gurrola.
Perez said, “I am grateful that Mayor Gurrola reached out to me and resolved this matter so swiftly. Arvin is truly blessed to have a hard-working Mayor.”
Mayor Gurrola said, “As a young elementary student singing Christmas carols to interacting with constituents as Arvin Mayor, I've been a proud participant and supporter of the Arvin Christmas Parade. I’m glad that Supervisor Perez, who represents Arvin, stepped up to provide the donation, and I hope the Arvin Chamber of Commerce will decide to put on this wonderful community event.”
The Arvin Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors made a decision Tuesday night on the fate of this year's christmas parade.
The Arvin City Council asked the Chamber of Commerce on Nov. 7 to put down a $1500 deposit by Nov. 27, or there won't be a parade. The chamber, which is classified as a non-profit, was told the fee starts at $1500 and is subject to increase if demanded by the City of Arvin.
The city wanted the event to happen, but they just don't have the money to pay the staff overtime, City Manager Al Noyola said.
As 23ABC reported last week, the City of Arvin is dealing with financial troubles, and cannot afford to put on the festivities this year.
Chamber member Randy Thompson said they have never been asked to pay up for the event in the more than 60 years of the event, and extra expenses aren't in the city's budget. In the past, Thompson said they've paid around $500 for advertising, judge gifts and trophies.
“We don’t have the funds," Thomspon said. "Our budget’s set up in May and we stick very close to the budget."
The parade was originally scheduled for Dec. 4. Now, the chamber said concerns or complaints should be taken up at the Arvin City Council meeting on Nov. 21 at 6 p.m. at Arvin City Hall.