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Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Full Disclosure by Elections Division Would Help

After reading The Angry Poodle today, I checked some web sources on reform in Ventura.

The County of Ventura does a much better job at providing candidate info on the web then the County of SB and has a spending limit of $150,000 for Supe races. Their finance reform ordinance is available in PDF form on the link above.

Like the County, the City of Ventura actually shows disclosure statements!

Why can't the County and City of SB do this? Transparency would be a good start to a campaign finance reform that could work.

8 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The County of Ventura may do a better job at providing candidate info, but that info is not available to Mac users except with the very inadequate (for Macs) Internet Explorer browser (and the site provides a download link only for Windows).

The city of Ventura site is available to all --- and is very clear. The City of Santa Barbara could learn from Ventura's web site, about the quantity of info and, especially, the ease of access.

Thanks for posting this (or at least the Ventura City link) :)

11/17/2005 5:58 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

I use Safari on Mac and had no issues -- you could try Firefox too -- an excellent alternative to the Dark Lord at Redmond.

Thanks for letting us know and I agree that this is good stuff overall -- let's ask Joe Holland if he can start doing this in our county.

11/17/2005 7:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fwiw...
I also use Firefox and this is what I got on the County site: "Browser Not Supported This site requires Microsoft Internet Explorer. Please try again using Internet Explorer.

If you do not have Microsoft Internet Explorer, it can be downloaded at:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/downloads/default.asp "

And attempting it with Safari, I got the same message.

This is just the County part, not the City.

What's particularly interesting are the campaign disclosure forms on the City site - also the candidates' manual is interesting.

Thank you very much for posting the Ventura links, even though the county is unavailable to me --- interesting that you, with a Mac and Safari, were able to get there.

I wonder what's in the SB City Charter re elections and what would be required to get this issue moving. (To avoid Mr. Barnwell's sighing and deep breathing, it should move carefully through the ordinance gateway even if it is but a voluntary measure.)

11/17/2005 9:44 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

I think the difference may be Tiger versus Panther versions of MAC OS -- as I just tried it on a non-Tiger machine.....bummer as Explorer hasn't been updated in years.

Seeing the city ordinance may be the next step.

11/18/2005 5:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, so that's the answer. I have Panther - am thinking about a new Mac with Tiger....

I thought there was going to be a web site or a blog on campaign finance reform somewhere?

11/18/2005 8:22 AM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

There will be a site -- Betsy Cramer has been talking about it. We'll let you know as soon as we do.

11/18/2005 1:25 PM  
Blogger Being_in_Santa Barbara said...

Wandering in the neighborhood: Thanks for your posting of the Ventura sites, although I, too, have a Mac with Panther.That site doesn't even work with the Mac version of Explorer - I've a Microso$t-free Mac friend in Ventura and will ask him to check into it.

Anyway..., I *was* thinking about doing a blogsite/Web site about campaign finance. Then the Mayor and council members Schneider and Barnwell seemed to take charge of the game and began running with the ball. I decided then that, given all the city's resources for research, including the paid staff!, it wasn't worth the time-effort it would take.

But reading Barney's column this morning, giving the sign effort that nice publicity, I began to rethink. One thought that came immediately to mind was that if the otter discussion accomplished nothing else, most likely everything will go directly to the Ordinance Committee.

That committee is chaired by Iya Falcone whose campaign was the among the biggest of scofflaws in terms of the City sign ordinance. Wouldn't that create a serious conflict perception of fairness?

Perhaps I'll post on the sign site the totals, but without that count, I think it's fair to say that Falcone's campaign ranked with Ebenstein's for being among the least responsive - Tyler's worse, being near totally non-responsive. (Quintero's was the worst but he had no e-mail and so received no notices, not that notices should have been necessary since I think ALL candidates received info when they ran about the sign ordinance.)

Anyway, back to thinking about it - and I am very open to any suggestions. I'll keep a while longer the address: signs05@cox.net

11/19/2005 8:12 AM  
Blogger Being_in_Santa Barbara said...

A Ventura Mac person:
It appears to be just the
one department that is denying access to Mac users (and PC users who
prefer not to use M$IE). I found the link to the County department that
is responsible for web content, and completed a contact form to inquire
as to the mystery of this antiquated denial of equal access. Since there
is strength in numbers, feel free to do likewise at:

http://www.countyofventura.org/web_coord.asp

---J

11/19/2005 2:53 PM  

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