Letters to the Editor

By Montecito Journal   |   September 5, 2019

Going Around

That intersection at Coast Village-Olive Mill-North Jameson looks so good, but the intersection just requires manners to navigate. And the collision stats are not at all negative.

If the southbound entrance to the 101 near Cabrillo Blvd. was never blocked in the first place (and will be for many more years), the traffic problems would be minimal.

And this isn’t even mentioning the crazy idea of Caltrans and the BOS wanting to plop a roundabout at San Ysidro and North Jameson in advance of doing the widening in this area. Either project will ruin Montecito forever.

Friends of San Ysidro Road

P.S. I have never seen a cyclist or a pedestrian going through the Hot Springs Road roundabout.

Melting Glaciers

I disagree with Page Roos’s unfounded idea that global warming isn’t attributable to human industrialization. The Industrial Revolution was well under way with its insidious impacts when her uncle noted glaciers melting. It is verifiable and obvious with a look at history and the impact our choices are making. Critical thinking is a good exercise. The second Industrial Revolution with the advent of the railroad and fossil fuels being used more widely coincide with the dates that Page Roos’s uncle noted glaciers melting.

Nancy Henderson
Santa Barbara

English Gardener

Not the end of the world but Richard Mineards‘ description of “gnarled ancient fig trees” being craned into the courtyard of what is now La Cocina restaurant should be correctly named as olive trees, otherwise readers get confused.

Ruth Deeley
Santa Barbara

Friends at the Library

Montecito library was founded in 1910, serving as a place where community members gather to get library materials, go to kids’ storytime and participate in many great programs, all free to the public. In times of need, the library acts as an essential resource. During the Thomas Fire, it was an information hub on the evacuation and, in the wake of the debris flow, a gathering place for our recovering community. 

Montecito Library’s budget has grown rapidly in the last few years and funding has not kept pace. Most of the library’s funding comes from the County and the non-profit Friends of the Montecito Library. As President of the Friends, I want to express my gratitude for all that 1st District Supervisor Das Williams has done for the County‘s library system, along with the other four members of the Board of Supervisors, to provide additional funding for our library.

The Friends had a healthy reserve but it ran out just as Supervisor Williams was about to take office. Since then, Das has worked tirelessly to find creative solutions to fill the funding gap. With every budget, he has pushed for additional funding for libraries serving less populated, more isolated areas.

We are continuing our work on sustainable funding and hope to consider increasing services. Supervisor Williams will be hosting community meetings this fall on those topics in both Montecito and Carpinteria. Please join us in exploring creative solutions to increase our library system’s health!

Pat Saley 
Santa Barbara

Elected, not Selected

Last week, it was noted that the Montecito Sanitary District Board approved – by a 3-2 vote – money to pay for an unneeded new office building expected to cost $5,500,000! The no votes came from the two members that we ratepayers elected. The other three members who were appointed voted yes.

In my opinion, this is outrageous. The money will be paid for from the capital replacement fund. A large portion of this fund consists of the recent rate increase of 37%. All of you who lived through the drought remember how Montecito Water District cut our water supply and gave us allocations of how much water we could use. The management had failed over many years to contract for enough water to cover drought conditions and we all suffered. At the last election old officials were replaced. Now we have the three people on the board who were not elected spending our money (which should go to more water supply and infrastructure) for an unneeded new $5,500,000 office building, which will house only a few people who already have an office facility. This is a waste of our money. 

Here is the email for Woody Barrett, an elected member of the Montecito Sanitary District: woodymsd2018@gmail.com

And here is the email address of the district: staff@montsan.org

I am sending both an email voicing our strong opposition to this unnecessary expenditure. I encourage you to do the same.

And I will be sending messages to other Montecito friends to also voice their objection and also would encourage all of you to do the same.

John Tilson

New Growth

The Bianchi garage not long after the mud came down

Recently, Penny and Adam Bianchi threw a party to celebrate the return of their property to what it was in 2017. In addition to 140 guests she invited me and the local contractors, plus the guys from Orange County that did the mud and debris removal. 

It was great fun to see the guys from Orange County, although they were only on site for the first two months, leaving it in a state of being scraped down to the topsoil. Also, when they left none of the houses on the street had been demolished, now only three remain other than Penny’s.

I worked lots of extra hours to get everything dialed in, and wow, the place was magical. Penny got six posters made of the property the first week we got back there after the disaster. We set them on easels in the same spot the photo was taken. This was a great way for people to see the new growth.

Dan Seibert
Santa Barbara

The Bianchi garage, once again ship-shape
Penny Bianchi’s landscapist-gardener Dan Seibert with the inimitable Ms Bianchi
The road to the Bianchi residence days before the January 2018 mud-and-debris event…
… and the same road in the immediate aftermath

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