Saturday, April 22, 2023

New county redistricting map adopted, legal challenges loom

San Luis Obispo County's Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 on Tuesday, along party lines, to adopt Map A for redistricting, with Supervisors Debbie Arnold and John Peschong opposing the move. The newly-adopted map bears a striking resemblance to the one chosen in 2011, despite numerous calls from supporters for a change.

Proponents of the map change contended that the Patten Map was discriminatory and illegal. However, Supervisor Arnold cautioned both her colleagues and attendees that the court did not find the Patten map to be either of those things, according to a report by CalCoast News.

In December 2021, after a lengthy and contentious process, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to adopt the Patten Map, with Supervisors Bruce Gibson and Dawn Ortiz-Legg dissenting. The issue was a partisan one, with local Democrats seeking minimal changes while Republicans preferred cities and communities to remain intact. In 2021, several supporters of Democratic candidates threatened to file a lawsuit if the board majority chose the Patten Map.

Enney wins Paso Robles school board election

According to the election results released on Friday afternoon, Kenneth E. Enney Jr. has emerged victorious in the Paso Robles Joint Unified School District Board election by a considerable margin of over 1,000 votes. 

Enney, who secured 54.42% of the total vote, received 6,524 votes, while his closest contender, Hollander, secured 5,464 votes, or 45.57%. The election is not yet completely finalized as 96 ballots with questionable signatures and those received through Monday are yet to be counted, according to a report from CalCoast News.

In response to his win, Enney expressed his eagerness to assume his position on the board and work towards a better academic performance for the district. Enney was previously appointed to the board in October 2022, but was later removed after he discovered a school webpage for LGBTQ students that contained a link to a chatroom where adults discussed sex. He brought this to the district's attention and subsequently sought an investigation by law enforcement.

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Surfliner resumes Santa Barbara-San Diego service

Amtrak has resumed daily train service between Santa Barbara and San Diego after six months of track repairs in Orange County. 

Passengers were previously required to take a bus connection between the Irvine and Oceanside stations. The daily schedule will remain the same, with 10 daily round trips between Los Angeles and San Diego. 

While the Orange County section is now open, construction is expected to continue in the area through June, including installing permanent fencing between the slope and railroad tracks. The 351-mile railway is used for passengers and freight trains, moving $1 billion in goods annually. 

For more information and construction updates, visit and Service Alerts – Metrolink. Source: Noozhawk

Santa Barbara State of the City Luncheon April 20

The Santa Barbara South Coast Chamber of Commerce has announced that it will host its annual State of the City luncheon on Thursday, April 20, from 11 AM to 1:30 PM at the Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort. 

This highly anticipated event will feature the Mayors of Goleta, Santa Barbara, and Carpinteria as guest speakers, providing an update on their respective cities and sharing their visions for the future.

The State of the City luncheon is an exceptional opportunity for attendees to hear from all three South Coast Mayors at once. The Chamber has assembled a distinguished panel of speakers, including City of Goleta Mayor Paula Perotte and City Manager Robert Nisbet; City of Carpinteria Mayor Al Clark and Assistant City Manager Michael Ramirez; and City of Santa Barbara Mayor Randy Rowse and City Administrator Rebecca Bjork.

Friday, March 31, 2023

State Legislature wants another $185 billion in taxes

According to a new report by the California Tax Foundation, in the first three months of the 2023-24 session, California lawmakers have considered introducing more than $185.6 billion in new taxes and fees, including a "wealth tax," a government-run health care system, a tax on oil company earnings, and several fee increases. 

This report includes all tax and fee legislation proposed from the start of the session until the date of publication. See the full report HERE.

It's worth noting that Governor Gavin Newsom's proposed $296.9 billion state budget, which includes a Managed Care Organization (MCO) tax and a $30 million tax increase, has not yet been introduced to the Legislature and is not included in this report. 

According to the January budget proposal, the state faces an operating deficit of approximately $22.5 billion, which could increase lawmakers' likelihood of proposing additional taxes and fees as the session continues. Source: California Tax Foundation

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Off-road enthusiasts score a legal victory in Oceano

Friends of the Oceano Dunes has won a legal victory against the California Coastal Commission in a quiet title lawsuit. 

The lawsuit argues that off-road vehicle enthusiasts have the right to continue driving and camping on portions of the Oceano Dunes because they have been recreating there for more than five years without objection or permission. 

The Coastal Commission argued that other historical uses of the dunes were more prevalent, but a judge rejected all of the state's arguments and set the case for trial in October 2023. 

Grover Beach mayor resigns

Anna Miller, the Mayor Pro Tem of Grover Beach, has resigned from her seat with immediate effect due to a change in residency. 

Miller, who was elected in November 2020, was set to serve until December 2024. The city council plans to discuss options for filling the vacant seat in their upcoming meeting on March 27. 

Miller is the Chief Operating Officer for People's Self-Help Housing and has previously served on local non-profit boards.

New county redistricting map adopted, legal challenges loom

San Luis Obispo County's Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 on Tuesday, along party lines, to adopt Map A for redistricting, with Supervisor...