THE Santa Barbara
COUNTY ACTION NETWORK
SPRING 2010 • www.sbcan.org • firstname.lastname@example.org • 805-722-5094
IN THIS ISSUE Engaging People & Strengthening Communities
Strengthening Communities.......1 SB CAN works to create sustainable communities that meet the needs
of all members of our community and future generations. We advocate
Crafting Public Policy........................2 a holistic approach to community planning that integrates Housing,
HOT Across the County….............3
Open Space, and Transportation (our HOT principles): building
affordable and workforce housing near jobs and public transportation
centers, while protecting open space, sensitive habitat and agriculture.
Community education and organizing are important to strengthen
Highlights of Harvest Picnic….....6
relationships among diverse groups and to empower people to actively
and effectively participate in the civic life of the larger community.
Action Fund Makes Endorsements..6 SB CAN has been especially interested in building a progressive
Welcome New Board Members.........7 discourse and governmental decision-making systematically disenfranchise
movement in the North County, where conservative ideologies in public
Annual Board Meeting…..............8 progressive views. We’ve made considerable progress in the Santa Maria
lower and middle income people and are intolerant of diverse cultures and
Valley with our Civic Engagement Project and Leadership Development
Series in 2005 and 2006, and our Sustainable Santa Maria workshop
series last fall. Now we’re looking forward to applying similar strategies for helping to build a strong progressive community in
the Lompoc Valley. We will be launching our Lompoc Livable Communities & Civic Engagement Program this fall.
Helping in that effort is our newest staff member, Joyce Howerton, formerly North County Coordinator for the Fund for Santa
Barbara, and Lompoc Mayor.
The Lompoc Valley is surrounded by beautiful hills, rich farm lands and the Pacific Ocean. Lompoc has a richness of cultural
heritage --including Philippians, African Americans, Portuguese, Hmong, Latinos, Italians and Native Americans. In many
ways, it is a nice compact community. But Lompoc faces high local unemployment as well as a large number of residents who
commute out of the community for work. It has many challenges facing it, not the least of which is low involvement in
local government. Many of Lompoc’s problems could be solved with more community involvement. When a big issue like state
water or the county split threatens the community, people turn out. The challenge is to get people involved and keep
them involved on a day to day basic.
Civic engagement is difficult when people feel they do not have a voice or are uncomfortable challenging the status quo
and often don’t know how to get involved. Our program is designed to engage people, inspire them to get involved in the com-
munity, and to give them the tools they need to have a strong voice and effect positive change. This includes
working on social and environmental issues, as well as attending meetings, serving on committees and writing letters to the
editor--all part of creating livable communities.
Crafting Public Policies that Protect Communities
O ne of the upturns in an economic downturn--when there’s not a whole lot of building or major
projects going on--is the opportunity to slow down and fine tune or create public policy that will
benefit all of our lives. SB CAN has been working with our coalition partners to do just that. Here’s
what we’ve been working on lately.
Ag Futures Alliance (AFA) Crafts Historic Ag Buffer Ordinance
SB CAN DIRECTORS “A locally unprecedented union of agricultural and environmental power brokers—two factions with
Joann Marmolejo, Pres. a long history of drawing battle lines instead of breaking bread”—that’s how Ethan Stewart of the
Dick Flacks, V.P. South
Santa Barbara Independent described the Ag Futures Alliance, of which SB CAN is a founding member.
Jerry Connor, V.P. North
After nearly a year of research, long discussions, numerous field trips, and fine-tuned crafting, AFA
Vibiana Saavedra, Secretary
released its 14-page proposal for a County agricultural buffer ordinance, representing a historic
balancing of needs between the County’s agricultural and environmental interests.
Selma Rubin, Treasurer
Jon Williams, Membership
Creating a buffer ordinance is no mean feat, since for the past 30 years members of the ag and
development community have been citing this as a critical need in the County. Yet it took a diverse
Emily Allen group of committed individuals with a common goal and focused purpose to make it happen.
Margarita del Valle
A buffer is a designated space between agriculturally zoned farmland and any new non-agricultural
development (a new housing tract, industrial or commercial facility, shopping center, etc.) that
Lee Heller is designed to protect farmland and reduce conflict with adjacent uses. Effective buffers must
Gale McNeely restrict the types of uses allowed within them by prohibiting things that would 1) jeopardize public
Robert Potter health or safety and 2) jeopardize the agricultural land's production viability.
David Pritchett The need to implement such a policy in our region cannot be overemphasized, as land that is
John Sterling developed adjacent to agriculture continues to create land use conflicts that threaten to impede
normal agricultural operations. The diverse membership of the AFA has put forth a document
reflecting a broad spectrum of views and needs, one that will help expedite the local process for
Deborah Brasket adopting such a policy.
ADVOCACY DIRECTOR “Basically, this is a tool we are giving to the County’s Planning and Development Department for
Joyce Howerton them to use as they develop their buffer policy for the county,” summed up Santa Barbara County
Farm Bureau Executive Director and founding Alliance member Teri Bontrager. “This is really just
the first step in a long process.”
Now the draft ordinance is in the hands of the County and we look forward to seeing county staff moving forward to prepare
an ordinance. More information on the ordinance and AFA, can be found at http://agfuturesalliance.org/santabarbara/
Rental Housing Roundtable (RHR) Seeks Justice
for Renters through County Ordinance
On April 20 the Board of Supervisors met to consider amendments to Ordinance 4444 that would protect tenants from mass evictions
that ruin families and devastate lives. After the fifth mass eviction in three years, RHR proposed a number of amendments to the 2002
Tenants Displacement Assistant Ordinance which seek to: (1) Expand the ordinance to include demolitions, remodeling (“upgrades”)
and rezoning; (2) Establish a County tracking process, and raise penalties for non-reporting; (3) Increase relocation pay-
ments (to reflect increased costs); (4) Provide for greater education on this ordinance among both tenants and landlords.
These amendments will provide assistance to tenants who are evicted – through no fault of their own. After each eviction, tenants are
sometimes forced to move three or four times a year, losing thousands in security deposits, forcing children to switch schools, and ru-
ining entire neighborhoods. Increasing tenants’ protections that will discourage landlords from evicting families is a cost-effective
way for the county to prevent displacement and preserve its workforce. These amendments would enable families to have the dollars
necessary to move and find a new residence.
By a 3/2 vote, the Board is asking staff to bring the amendments back for a final vote.RHR is a coalition of more than 30 community
organizations, including SB CAN, that was created to address the lack of legal protections for renters, end unjust evictions and unfair
treatment of tenants, increase the number of rental units available and develop cooperative ownership
H.O.T. Across the County
SB CAN’sHOTCommitteemeets once a month in Santa Barbara General Plan Updates: SB CAN members have been taking
to address HOT issues in housing, open space, and transporta- part in the planning process for General Plan Updates through-
tion across the county. SB CAN also meets on a regular basis with out the County, paying close attention to the issues of housing,
Coalition partners to create public policies that meet common open space and transportation, our H.O.T Principles. In the
goals. Here are a few items we’ve been working on lately: City of Santa Barbara, this means supporting concentrating the
development of housing in the downtown areas, along tranjs-
Bringing Our Community Home: BOCH came out of the 10 – portation corridors, expanding the protection of neighborhoods
Year Plan to end chronically homelessness. SB CAN sits on the and reducing automobile dependence for City residents.
board, along with both public and private agencies throughout
Santa Barbara County, who believe housing is a basic necessity, a Mattei’s Tavern: Mattei’s Tavern, built in 1886, is a beautiful
place to be safe, stable, and from which to grow into one’s poten- restaurant in Los Olivos, and much to everyone’s surprise it had
tial. On May 19, BOCH is holding the first of a two part confer- no historic landmark status. The Valley Alliance has submitted
ence on affordable housing opportunities and community support a nomination to the County’s Historic Landmarks Advisory
Commission (HLAC) of Mattei’s Tavern, along with the sur-
programs available in Santa Barbara County. The conference will
rounding cottages, the historic water tower and the specimen
focus on educating providers with what is available, what the re- trees for status as a Historical Landmark. SB CAN wrote a
strictions or requirements are, and how to best work together to letter of support for this long overdue effort, and will attend the
provide housing for homeless people countywide. HLAC meeting to support the Valley Alliance request.
Pacific Surfliner: There is a growing consensus by the Santa Bar- Measure A: The Santa Barbara County Association of Govern-
bara County Association of Governments (SBCAG) and many ments, SBCAG, is convening a stakeholders committee, of
which SB CAN will be a member, to assist in the preparation of
community groups that the low ridership of the Surfliner can be at-
the North County Safe Routes to School, Bicycle and Pedes-
tributed to the times of day it arrives and departs Santa Barbara. If trian Program. The first five years of revenues projected to be
CalTrans and Amtrak would re-adjust the schedules, it would available for this program total is $439,763.
allow some of the 20 thousand daily commuters into the South-
coast to use the Surfliner. SB CAN raised these concerns with the
BEYOND RECYCLING – Best Practices in Sustainability
SB CAN held a two part series on Transitioning from Waste to Resource in Santa Maria earlier this year, and will be holding sim-
ilar workshops in Lompoc at the local library, 501 East North Ave. These are part of SB CAN’s continuing series of workshops
on B e s t P r a c t i c e s i n S u s t a i n a b i l i t y .
Beyond Recycling – “The Story of Stuff” Beyond Recycling – Are We Doing Enough?
Wednesday, May 5, 7:00-9:00 P.M – Presenter: Wednesday, June 16, 7:00 – 9:00 P.M.
Joerg Blischke, Chemical Process Engineer & Consultant – Presenters: City of Lompoc & County of Santa Barbara
This free, public workshop moves us beyond mainstream Now that recycling has become mainstream, what more can we
recycling practices to explore some of the newest thinking about do locally to divert waste from our landfills and manage our
waste reduction and resource management. A slideshow resources more wisely? Learn what the City of Lompoc and
presentation will provide a diverse overview of what various County of Santa Barbara are doing, and how we can help.
communities in North America and Europe are doing to manage
resources more wisely. The workshop also features video clips of
Annie Leonard’s entertaining talk on “The Story of Stuff,” and
William McDonough and Michael Braungart’s inspirational
vision of “Cradle to Cradle” product design that prevents waste
from being manufactured in the first place by promoting the
intelligent redesign of goods and services.
SB CAN Board President Joann Marmolejo
at the Lompoc Nonprofit Faire
Santa Barbara Celebrates Selma!
ore than 250 admirers honored longtime commu- evening’s keynote speaker. She’d been instrumental in
nity activist Selma Rubin on the eve of her 95th launching his illustrious career back in the 1970s, in the
birthday with a catered dinner at Temple B’nai B’rith process helping turn formerly conservative Santa Barbara
and SB CAN as the grateful beneficiary. Ms. Rubin, one of into a bastion of progressive values.
SB CAN’s founding board members was, as always, the shining
star in a glittering firmament. In the almost 50 years that If you’re wondering whether the Big 95 have taken a toll on
this Toledo, OH native has called Santa Barbara home, she’s our tireless champion of social justice and environmental
pitched in to found or champion countless nonprofit action, fear not: when SB CAN polled board members for
endeavors. Along the way she’s made lifelong friends of Earth Day duties, the first voice mail to roll in was from
many who cherish her wit, wisdom and willingness to sit Selma, saying, “I’m at the Citizens’ Planning Association
through hours of meetings before showing up to do what’s table from eleven to one, then PUEBLO’s from one to three
needed at a rally, forum, protest or fundraiser. As anyone and Sierra Club five to seven. So I can handle SB CAN from
who knows Selma will tell you, she would have been three to five.”
perfectly happy to sign in guests and hand out name tags at
her own birthday celebration. She’s never said no to the Santa Barbara County Action Net-
work, or to many others anyone could think of. Positivity
Any number of out-of-towners, including family, turned out and simple, sound advice are truly what Selma Rubin is all
to help fete the birthday girl, but Selma took special joy in about. We’re all looking forward to 100!
welcoming veteran California legislator Gary K. Hart, the
SB CAN Action Fund makes June primary endorsements
W hen SB CAN changed its nonprofit status to a
501(c)(3), a new 501(c)(4) organization, the SB
CAN Action fund, was formed. The Action Fund
board members are Dick Flacks, chair; Marc Chytilo,
Joyce Dudley for Santa Barbara District Attorney: Her
varied personal experience uniquely qualifies her. We
appreciate her concern for the most vulnerable in the
community, for environmental enforcement and for fairness.
secretary-treasurer; Bob Potter, Vibiana Saavedra, Walt We’re impressed by her capacities for leadership and her
Hamilton, Ralph Armbruster-Sandoval, George Relles, and dedication.
Das Williams and Susan Jordan for state assembly
On April 23 the Action Fund board met to discuss the Democratic nomination, 35th Assembly district: Both of
endorsement of candidates running in the upcoming June these are well-qualified progressive candidates, and both
primary election. The board’s decisions were based on have strong support within our organizations, so,
candidate responses to questionnaires sent to them by the accordingly neither received the 2/3 vote necessary for
Action Fund; support of 2/3of the board members is endorsement. Election of either would provide strong voice
required for an endorsement. The questionnaires asked for the values we seek to fulfill and would benefit our
about candidates’ support for the Action Fund’s principles district. One of the issues that divides them, however, is the
and policies: protection and development of housing that’s PXP agreement, which the local environmental community
affordable for middle and lower income workers, preserva- has supported because it offers a way toward stopping oil
tion of open space and agricultural land, and development of drilling in the channel. SB CAN endorsed this agreement.
transportation alternatives that reduce dependence on Susan Jordan opposed the agreement from the outset; Das
private cars. Williams endorses it.
Based on these criteria, the following candidates This article is paid for by the Action Fund.
were endorsed by the Action Fund:
Janet Wolf for County Supervisor, 2nd district: Janet
Wolf’s record in her first term merits her re-election. She
has been particularly concerned with open space preserva-
tion and environmentally conscious planning. We hope to
see her exercise leadership in behalf of opportunities for
affordable housing, but appreciate her desire to encourage
processes of community participation in planning. Janet
Wolf has exercised strong leadership in the budget crisis to
ensure that community needs are voiced and heard.
Dick Flacks, Chair of SB CAN Action Fund
SB CAN Members’ Continuing Legacy of Community Leadership and Public Service
Since SB CAN was formed in 2001, founding members have Both Das Williams running for the 35th State Assembly seat, and
sought and won public offices throughout the county and state. Tim Allison as a Democratic Party candidate for congress in the
These include Helene Schneider, current Mayor of Santa 24th District were members of the SB CAN founding board. Long
Barbara, Das Williams, SB City Councilmember; County time members Janet Wolf, Susan Jordan, and Hilda Zacarias are
Supervisor Salud Carbajal, and Pedro Nava, currently holding all running for office: Wolf is running for re-election for supervi-
35th State Assembly seat. sor in the 2nd district; Jordan is running for the state assembly in
the 35th district; and Zacarias is running for state assembly in the
SB CAN members are very well-represented among candidates 33rd district. Founding SB CAN board member (and newly
in the coming elections. Pedro Nava, SB CAN’s first president, appointed Action Fund board member), Mickey Flacks, is a can-
is running in the Democratic primary for state attorney general. didate for Democratic Party Central committee in the 1st District.
We are proud of our members’ dedication to public service and the common good.
SB CAN Welcomes New Board Members
During the past several months SB CAN’s Board of Directors welcomed three new board members. Here they are!
Corinna Contreras John Sterling
Corinna has been living in Isla Vista John has been in law enforcement for over
since 2006 when she began her un- 25-years, serving most recently as Police
dergraduate study at the University of Chief in Santa Maria, where, as the SB Indy
California. This June she will be grad- wrote: “He forged new relationships in Santa
uating with a double emphasis in Film Maria's Latino community and with other or-
& Media Studies and Sociology. ganizations long suspicious of law enforce-
Corinna loves bringing local social, political, and environmental is- ment. Sterling did so because he understood,
sues to the media landscape, for the goal of having more peo- then as now, that most social problems can be better addressed
ple involved in shaping their communities. You can often see when people work together and not against each other.” John ran
her walking around town with a varying combination of shades, a for the 4th District Supervisor seat in 2008 against incumbent
guitar, a tripod, a camcorder, and sometimes a hat. After hiber- Joni Gray, winning the endorsement of many progressive or-
nating in the cold winter months, you can now find her along ganizations, and losing by a narrow margin. Currently he’s
the lovely Santa Barbara bike trails, hiking in the hills, and tak- pursuing a doctorate in business administration.
ing long strolls up and down the coast.
Lee Heller, Ph.D.-- J.D
Lee lives in Summerland where she loves to walk the beach with her dogs
Henry, Sweetie and Jed. She has been a long-time activist in Santa
Barbara County, working on social justice and environmental issues that
range from animal rights to protecting our coastlines from the dangers
of oil drilling. Accordingly, she has served on the board of both Dog
PAC SB and Get Oil Out!. She’s active in local progressive politics and political campaigns, as well
as volunteering at the County's three animal shelters, working to promote spaying and
neutering and responsible pet ownership.
From 2010 Oscar Party Album
P.O. Box 23453
Santa Barbara, CA 93121-3453
Creating Sustainable Communities
SB CAN works to create sustainable communities by
promoting social and economic justice and preserving our
environmental and agricultural resources.
SB CAN advocates a holistic approach to community
planning that integrates housing, open space, and
transportation to meet the needs of all members of our com-
munity and future generations.
S B CA N’s AN NUA L MEM BERSHIP MEETI NG
“Home on the Sterling Ranch”
1851 Santa Rosa Road, Lompoc
Sunday, June 27, 3:00 – 5:00 PM
This year’s annual meeting will be held on June 27 at the home of new board member John
Sterling, who lives on a family ranch in Lompoc. John will speak about North County HOT
issues and why he joined the SB CAN board. Each year our membership meetings rotate be-
tween South County and North/Central County.
For more information or to reserve your seat, call Joyce Howerton at 805-563-0463.
SUPPORT SB CAN
We cannot ight for environmental protection, social justice, and good government
through out Santa Barbara County without our members’ generous support.
Become a member or make a donation or at www.sbcan.org
SB CAN, P.O. Box 23453, Santa Barbara, CA 03121 • (805)722-5094 • email@example.com • www.sbcan.org