Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Friday, December 22, 2006

Planning Commission Vote

A faithful reader suggested the following for a worthy of discussion post:
There was an important City Council vote yesterday for the Planning Commission. 7 applied, 5 were nominated. The new commissioner will be Bruce Bartlett, replacing retiring Bill Mahan.

The argument was there should be an architect on the PC, but that commission is exactly that, planning for the future and protecting what we have. It will be interesting to see if he follows Mr. House's never-seen-a-development-I-don't-like pattern. The betting is that he will. Watch out NPO and other such protection measures! but at least Vadim Hsu did not get in, despite two sometimes supporters.

Shocking that former mayor (and former planning commissioner) Sheila Lodge got only Mayor Blum's vote and then in the first round! Interesting to see Horton switch to Bartlett and Williams from Pritchett to Hsu. That last is quite a leap and something neighborhood people should keep in mind.

Here are the votes.

First round:
Bartlett: Brianwell, Falcone, House,
Hsu: Horton
Jordan: -
Lodge: Blum
Pritchett: Schneider, Williams

2nd round:
Bartlett: Barnwell, Falcone, Horton, House
Hsu: Williams
Jordan: Blum
Lodge: -
Pritchett: Schneider


Anonymous donald de Santa Barbara said...

Pritchett should have won....not because he blogs here but because he walks the walk and talks the talk.....

We now have a Neighborhood Preservation Ordinance that will help protect the city's existing neighboorhoods.

It is time to plan for the future and correct past mistakes. We have a serious housig problem, notoriuos creek and ocean pollution problem as well as critical traffic problem.

As a homeowner and working class "bee" I realize that we need an approach other than accomodating every suburbanites impossible dream of unfettered single occupier automobile use.

David Pritchett's experience, participation and comments during the interview made him the best Plannig Commisioner candidate.

12/22/2006 11:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sad but not surprising that the current Council is bowing to the pro-growth, anti-regulatory building industry (of which architects are a vocal segment)...

but what's with Williams? Why jump ship and interject a name that wasn't in the first round? did he make too many promises at some point?

12/23/2006 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sheila Lodge has had more than enough opportunity to "serve". Next.

12/23/2006 10:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good choice. I think now we can more towards multi-story dense low income housing in the downtown area. We need to move away from single family housing, which I think is the goal of the current Council. Let's hope the approve and get projects started quickly!

12/23/2006 11:16 AM  
Anonymous bungalow bill said...

Sorry, but the Neighborhood Protection Ordinance is about half as protective as it was supposed to be, largely because the local architects hijacked it at the end, from the long, orderly process chaired by real neighborhood advocates Dianne Channing and Joe Guzzardi. Another architect replacing Mahan means lots more business for same, with respect for neighborhood character becoming a thing of the past, no matter what the people who live in them want or say. Get ready for lots more blinding-white faux adobes jammed together on too-small spots of land.

12/23/2006 3:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

bungalow bill - don't be a relic. We need the type of dense building you are opposing. It's the only way to make this a sustainable community!

12/23/2006 6:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

With this appointment, and the approval of Mark Lee's multi-million dollar mansions on what is now open space--this City Council is brazenly declaring its devotion to the developer dollar. It's all about density, dollars, developers. That will be their legacy.

12/23/2006 6:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see the no growth crowd is still intent on environmental destruction. Give it up!

12/24/2006 10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:00 AM, huh? the no growthers "intent on environmental destruction"? LOL

Those in favor of "downtown density", whatever that means, however it would be defined on the ground, seem to forget that most of us here have chosen to live here, not in Orange County because of the combination of good air, open space (what's left), views and a small city ambiance.

Don't the residents already here have a choice - I thought we spoke in the last city council election, but I guess not loud enough.

A dense urban community surrounded by, for example, Mark Lee million dollar manses on one of the last open areas or the nearly million dollar Yano condos or the ugly highrising by the freeway lower Chapala are not what attracts most of us here. Those who prefer that should move south.

There should be more lower income rental housing, no question, but in all the neighborhoods and surrounding areas not just crammed downtown. Workers are definitely needed for all those expensive condos the architects and their supporting friends have and are having built.

It's the developers whose handprints are all over Southern California who are the relics in this new green-appreciating century.

12/24/2006 1:06 PM  
Anonymous serious and curious said...

Just wondering what the "smart growthers" ultimately envision for Santa Barbara. What would this place actually look like if you could implement exactly what you want? What would the population be, what would the density be, and where would the water, for one thing, come from to support this "sustainable" community? Where would residents go for a little privacy and peace and quiet? And what would happen to the tourism economy our "leaders" have decided to create, when no one would want to come here anymore?

12/24/2006 3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would look like San Francisco with housing for another 100,000. Tall building, Mass Transit - like Bart, and water from the Desal Plant.

It would be sustainable, not like the current environmental time-bomb!

12/24/2006 7:38 PM  
Anonymous David Pritchett said...

While I appreciate the praises and plugs here about my attempt at an appointment to the City Planning Commission, just do not start with the Mike-Pintoisms, please....

12/25/2006 9:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

those who romantacize the big-city urban disasters can be counted on two hands. And they are all confidants of one another....and they own their homes on lots not approaching the density they salivate over.

beyond those dozen or so persons, most people and policymakers on the South Coast realize there are no magic answers to the housing/jobs imbalance dilemma. We'll have imperfect solutions, developer greed posing as social conscience, and many other less than perfect policy ideas. We live on a small and contained geographic piece of land, with weather making it desirable to too many.......always has been that way, always will be.

12/25/2006 11:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The good news you baby boomers won't be around much longer and we can clean up the mess you've left the town in.

12/26/2006 8:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

7:38: The 35 million dollar desal plant produced a few swimming pools worth of water and was quickly dismantled and parts sent off to the Middle East--so that's out. Got any other ideas for supporting this "sustainable" community?

12/26/2006 8:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So they can't put it back together? Sure they can.

12/26/2006 10:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The desal plant could be reactivated for some $millions, producing drinkable water for about the cost of importing state water. Probably for close to $2,000/acre foot. Does anyone know or know how to find out the actual (estimated) figures?

Without a major expansion of the plant, I don't think it could ever supply enough water for all the people the "smart" growth folks want to house. The new Tampa, FL plant cost over $100 million.

12/26/2006 2:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why was this sent to the middle east? That was stupid. Like we're never gonna have another drought.

12/26/2006 3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Parts, most of the plant, were sold to Saudi Arabia, probably to pay off the cost of an unused plant - after Santa Barbarans voted for both state water (the city authorizing $28mil in bonds for pipeline construction) and the desal plant ($25 mil). The plant could be modernized, rebuilt, reactivated.

The vote came in 1991 after a major campaign in favor of state water by, guess who and which interests?, including the News-Press editorials then by John Lankford, now living in Florida, writing editorials for the Santa Maria Times.

The majority of the SB city and also the county (except for Lompoc) electorate bought into the hysteria of seeing a low level Lake Cachuma and had no to little chance to do its own research or just didn't give a damn.... Those favoring growth made sure to get their message and voters out.

La plus ca change, la plus c'est la meme chose, etcetera.

12/27/2006 9:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good to know water is not an issue. Our new progressive Council sees the wisdom in dense sustainable building, which is the future of Santa Barbara. I hope the building/housing we need begins quickly, maybe 1/1/2007?

12/27/2006 1:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just moved here. I agree with building more. Maybe that way the rents will come down.

12/28/2006 2:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yea 259PM anon, build more and the rents will come there's a solution......driving up chapala now feels like being in a cement canyon.....and this is good for us because...................??????????

12/28/2006 7:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

2:59 has a good point. Because people need affordable places to live.

12/29/2006 7:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a City College student I pay $1,050 a month for my studio. More housing would really help us students. Thank you.

12/29/2006 12:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

12:50 anon: sorry about that, but the SBCC trustees greed and lack of responsibility for their impact on the community has contributed to your they continue to solicit students world wide--- for an institution whose original purpose was and should remain the education of locals whose homes/residences are already here----they aggravate an already untenable housing situation.

12/31/2006 1:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, you are saying students not welcome, unless they are your own?

1/01/2007 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:09--you perfectly illustrate the twisted logic and intimidation tactics of the developer-bullies---they and that logic stole the Goleta election and they will aim to steal more----pitting allies against one another, creating straw men.......the unholy alliances that are determined to turn the south coast into an extension of orange and la counties........using new tactics to silence their old critics......its fascinating to watch it happen

1/01/2007 10:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, students from afar should be less welcome and SBCC should focus on Locals Only.

These are the hard choices for government involved in education and housing.

Why should locals who sontinually have difficulty with escalating housing prices now have to suffer more so foreign sudents from other counties or nations can be attracted here to raise prices for the locals?

1/01/2007 1:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is disheartening Nelville ignores so many of his once bottled water fans and never answers questions about Dr. Laura. Because of his unworthiness we're voting for another BlogaBarbara Person of the Year Nomination (worse). This says much of why Dr. Laura gets a vote..................................... "Waste of space: 12/31/06 Wendy Mc Caw's Santa Barbara News-Press "dr laura" column. Civility is keeping a local column local. Civility is stating where these so-called letter writers are located. Civility is stating when you have any type of connection, like with charities, political correctness doctor's bs and so on to ALL the MANY promos that Schlessinger slips in a local column. Who is R. Scott Leonard and tell us where he's from, PLEASE? What's with him promoting her book like a pro? Just another truck driver? It is difficult to read these columns. She could skip ALL the letters and have her workers write something local. And her people are not Oprah w/ books, change bandwagons........................ Schlessinger will only print similar repetitive themes, book promos & "letters" from mostly unlocated "people" ( NON EXISTING ) Or doctors with her spin. Remember Dr. Ursula? They prove ZERO (GWB school of math & science). The local column is used to promote & sell. She has numerous other outlets for that. She also uses the News-Press for hachet jobs..................... We can only read subtext in her nothingness bs.................... What's the switch on homosexuals actually about? Does she need to prepare for coming revelations? If she wants grandchildren, she can reach out to her step children. She can have her opinion & learn tolerance. I've known professionals who believe single siblings are "bad". A "good" parent would have at least two children. So what if some homosexuals agree with Schlessinger & others with Cheney's daughter? Schlessinger, leave the local column out of your personal agenda and think of others, THE COMMUNITY. I don't know what kind of people she knows in Santa Barbara, but not all local teens are out of control and STD uneducated. Prehaps Schlessinger has been taken in by inferior data & research again. She can continue her personal, political, national and global spin, we are only asking her to write a local column in the Santa Barbara News-Press, one of her many venues. Not opinion or phobia. Just the (local)FACTS, mam." K

1/01/2007 2:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should locals who sontinually have difficulty with escalating housing prices now have to suffer more so foreign sudents from other counties or nations can be attracted here to raise prices for the locals?

Because this is America. Build more, increase the supply and watch the prices come down.

1/02/2007 8:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bashing on foreign students sure sounds racist.

But then again, fits the Santa Barbara reputation.

1/02/2007 9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the unholy alliances that are determined to turn the south coast into an extension of orange and la counties

What's wrong with that?

With more housing, everyone wins!

1/02/2007 10:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...aaahhhh I wondered how long it would take before someone played the "racist" card..........the home builders have played that one all the way to the bank.......

1/02/2007 1:03 PM  
Anonymous Eggs Ackley said...

Realize that you are threatening my community's quality of life. We are far beyond a sustainable population already so don't expect a welcome mat. The so-called enviros and architect developer cabal who would promote density as more sustainable than sprawl will still be around to sprawl in the name of affordable housing after they have over-densified our city's cores to the point of putrefaction. How much of Santa Barbara do we want to look like the massive, overscaled, architectural calamities on lower Chapala. More Granada garages oops, transit hubs...right on. The biggest architectural disater to hit Sanata Barbara since the slip n' fall sidewalks on lower State.

The real rub is that most see lack of affordable housing as a problem,when the truth is, it is a symptom of overpopulation. Those who come here and then complain about the cost of housing have only themselves to blame. Realize that you are part of the problem and by leaving you become part of the solution. Lessen demand and prices prices come down ;<)

1/02/2007 2:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some downtown dorms would help the students. Anyone know how we could help with this?

1/02/2007 2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

eggs ackley (how creative - NOT!)

Unless you own Santa Barbara, this isn't your community, it's all of OURS and we need the housing. Welcome to the future!

1/02/2007 2:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, according to the United Nations:

...any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, color, descent, or national or ethnic origin which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural or any other field of public life...

is racism. And they said this in 1966

So, what do you call shutting foreigners out of the local housing and education system?

1/02/2007 3:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

uhhhh 3:04pm---would that include soliciting residents of IOWA? wow, what a misuse of a United Nations declaration.....

1/02/2007 9:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if the shoe fits...

1/03/2007 7:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You also need box stores so colleges students like me can get good prices and not spend all our time driving around.

Jorge Sanchez

1/03/2007 10:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good thing we have a progressive Council now that sees the need for density.

1/03/2007 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When is the City going to raise the living wage? It needs to be higher to keep up with the rents here.

1/03/2007 6:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And would the money for the higher wage come from the same City funds that are spent to build low-rent housing.

Maybe the City should just print some fake money and give out wads of cash so all the poor people who want to live in Santa Barbara then can afford the high rents? But with that surge in demand, the rental market rates would not go up, would they?

1/06/2007 8:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are a lot of rich folks here. There should be a special tax on homeowners to give to the renters and the poor!

1/09/2007 2:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The city should set the rents. Not greedy landlords.

1/10/2007 11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. When are we going to get rent control?

1/11/2007 9:55 AM  

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