A Vote for Gregg Hart

By Montecito Journal   |   May 17, 2022

Imagine being elected to serve in local government, only to find yourself in a global health emergency. That’s exactly what happened to Gregg Hart, then Chair of the County Board of Supervisors, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020. “I was hoping to use my chairmanship to highlight the need for emergency and disaster preparedness,” Supervisor Hart told Noozhawk. “The coronavirus is obviously something that I never imagined would happen at the beginning of the year, and it turned into disaster response instead of disaster preparedness.”

It’s this kind of long-term thinking, along with the ability to pivot as needed, and a total commitment to the job, that will make Gregg a great choice as our next state assemblymember. Gregg made it a priority to get County residents information immediately, and was present at all briefings, so that the community would have a trusted source of information. This commitment to ensuring access to honest and clear information is exactly what we want from our representative to Sacramento, which can seem far away but where so many policies are made affecting our daily lives.

Gregg’s leadership has helped ensure that the County has been transparent about pandemic policies, especially with frequently changing state rules being imposed on local governments. His support for common sense measures is exactly what we need in a state legislator advocating for our County at the state legislature.

I’m voting for Gregg Hart for Assembly on June 7, for this kind of leadership.

Margaret Lazarus

Revenue-neutral Carbon Fee a Good Idea

I would like to second the comments in Robert Taylor’s “Community Voices” column in the May 12th issue. A revenue-neutral fee on carbon can reduce the need for complex fossil fuel regulations, as it puts decision-making about energy choices in the hands and pocketbooks of each of us. Consumers and businesses who see the prospect of a steadily-rising fee on carbon can purchase and plan accordingly, and middle- and lower-income families will be protected by an equal-per-person dividend. There is a bill in the House of Representatives, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (energyinnovationact.org), which would do just this. It should be the kind of action that can get the support of both parties and both houses of Congress.

Dennis Thompson, FAIA, LEED AP

Reelect Salcido

As the Santa Barbara County 2018 Teacher of the Year, I was able to witness first-hand the transition of Bill Cirone’s retirement, and the seamless takeover of Susan Salcido as Santa Barbara County Superintendent of Schools. She took her new position seriously from the moment she took office. 

Susan makes it a priority to visit school sites in our county and has visited my classroom often, even after my term ended. Each visit comes with animated conversations with students and genuine curiosity about what they are learning. Susan collaborates with teachers and asks questions about what’s working, as well as any struggles we face. Additionally, I see Susan at many SBCEO functions such as Battle of the Books, County Spelling Bees, technology symposiums, and other meetings. She is always gracious and inquisitive about my students, school district, and even my family.

As many in education know, dealing with COVID-19 over the past few years has been difficult. Through the many changes and updates that schools were facing, Susan was always available and supportive of decisions schools were making to fit their needs. As a 5th grade teacher at Oak Valley Elementary, I firmly believe that Susan has the experience and dedication to lead our schools. Please join me in voting for Dr. Susan Salcido for Santa Barbara County Superintendent of Schools on June 7th.

Jennifer Cline

Time for a New Superintendent 

The definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” Thus it is with the incumbent Superintendent of Schools. Why would anyone looking at the FACTS vote for the incumbent? In her 15 years at the County office of Education, she has NOT improved the academic outcomes for our children under her leadership. The current incumbent is failing the students, their families, and the community. She keeps on using the same methods, methodologies, and ideologies that clearly are not working, yet she expects your vote. Only 34% of the students in Santa Barbara County are proficient in math, and only 47% are proficient in English. Those are failing grades for anyone, much less the incumbent Superintendent. 

The incumbent says she has years of experience, but does her experience generate any positive educational results? Just look at the 102 students under her direct care at the County Board of Education. Their results have steadily declined under her tenure, to a point so low that that it cannot possibly get any lower. None of the 102 students under her direct care are proficient in English. None of the 102 students under her direct care are proficient in math. Zero. From a taxpayer’s perspective she has failed in her fiduciary duty. From a moral level, it is far worse. Without real skills, these students don’t stand a chance in our increasingly competitive and challenging world.

I will vote for Christy Lozano for County Superintendent of Schools. She has the grit, energy, and determination to turn our County Education office around. I’ve known Christy personally. She is well equipped to meet all the challenges of the job and heal the wounds and divisions in our schools. Christy understands that the children have been put in the cross hairs of educational divisiveness both locally and nationally. This is truly a tragedy that must be overcome and will only be overcome by taking politics out of the classroom. Christy has the moral strength, good character, affability, and vision to lead. Nothing is more important to the future of our county and our country, than raising up and fully preparing the next generation of young people with the skills and character to succeed. 

To learn more about Christy Lozano, please check out her website christylozano.com. All data comes from ed-data.org.

Peggy Wilson

Clarity Needed 

As a concerned citizen I am fully on board with recycling. A container for up to 24 ounces is five cents and those that are greater is ten cents. I happily put my cans and bottles in the blue bin so they can start a new life in another product.

In almost every single neighborhood in town I see people going through these bins and purging these materials. Many do it when the bins are on the street and some even go into people’s driveways and into city owned property bins. As a person that thrives on clarity, is this working to eat, or make money to put gas in a car, or pay a phone bill? Or is it theft?

I have talked to several people and posed this question. There is no clarity or even a consensus. Some say it’s not stealing if it is on the street. Some say it’s trespassing if the bin is on their property. Some say that they don’t care either way. Some say they don’t want anyone going through their bins at all. Some say they look the other way. Some say it’s a job. The only conclusion I can come up with is that these dumpster diving soles work very hard to stay afloat. (By stealing.) How is that for clarity?

Steven Marko

Another Vote for Salcido

On June 7, 2022, we will vote on the next Superintendent of Schools for Santa Barbara County. As a former teacher, principal, and superintendent of a high school district in Santa Barbara County, I have a unique perspective and experience to assess the quality of leadership needed to be an effective and competent leader as our County Superintendent of Schools.

Dr. Susan Salcido advanced her way to her current position as County Superintendent by first serving as a teacher, school site administrator, and County Schools Assistant Superintendent before becoming Superintendent in 2017. She has done an admirable job for the past five years under very challenging and difficult circumstances, overseeing a $100,000,000 budget and providing support for 20 school districts. Under her leadership, programs supporting students’ learning have blossomed, especially around preparation for the future economy. 

By contrast, Dr. Salcido’s opponent has no administrative experience, having spent her entire career in the classroom. Additionally, if a recent interview with NewsmakersJerry Roberts is any indication, she has little understanding of the County Superintendent position. She seems to think that the job involves overseeing individual school districts and curricula, which it does not. Dr. Salcido has provided very effective and knowledgeable leadership as our County Superintendent for the past five years. This is not the time to elect someone with no experience, little understanding of the role, and an obvious ideological axe to grind.

Jeffrey N. Hearn, PhD, Superintendent (Retired)

More Support for Lozano

For the first time in over 35 years, voters finally have a choice, an opponent, for Superintendent of Schools. Starting May 9, we can vote for U.S. Veteran and Teacher Christy Lozano to turnaround our failed county secondary high schools and most elementary schools, and oversee the massive billion-dollar budgets for our failed public schools. Only Montecito, Hope, Ballard, and a few Goleta District elementary schools.

Christy Lozano can and will get the job done! Countywide Susan Salcido has proven she cannot do the work required of a Superintendent. Christy Lozano can and will get the job done!

I have watched Superintendent Salcido as a parent since 2005, and as a local school activist since 1980. She is lackadaisical, MIA except for TV and public appearances. Pay is high, results are low. 

Voters, parents, and taxpayers are disregarded by Superintendent Salcido. At Cold Spring School she circumvented voters who rejected the L2020 bond. The vote was to not approve another taxpayer funded bond to build until AFTER a forensic audit. Superintendent Salcido decided otherwise, refusing the forensic audit, and agreeing to release the remaining 2008 Measure C Bond proceeds held by Treasurer Harry Hagen

Make your vote matter. Vote Christy Lozano for the school leadership change desperately needed in our county by both students and taxpayers. Want to know more? Zoom in for the long-awaited debate between U.S. Veteran and Teacher Christy Lozano and current Superintendent Susan Salcido on May 12 at 6 pm. Register at the League of Women Voters at LwvSantaBarbara.org.

Denice Spangler Adams, Montecito

Sign of the Times

Residents living near the Hot Springs trailhead illegally blocked the public right of way by placing rocks and plants on it.

Only the county can legally close off access to the right of way. The residents could have worked with the county, but instead took the law into their own hands. That some residents are suing the county for attempting to take back what belongs to the public is crazy and upside down.

There’s no excuse for such blatant disregard of the law. A lot of people park on the public right of way in my Montecito neighborhood. Does that fact give me the right to block off the right of way as I see fit? If there’s a problem with too many cars parked, the proper thing to do is make a request to the county. Then a process gets started.

It’s not fair that hikers get ticketed, but residents get away with illegally taking away public space.

Residents behind the litigation want environmental review for the county freeing the public right of way, but didn’t request it when they usurped it.

Restoring access to the right of way is needed. Removing rocks will create about 20 parking spaces – that seems a reasonable amount. To have more parking will require the removal of plants.

Here’s a way to greatly improve the situation: Put up adequate signs stating “No Parking” in areas where vehicles stick out in the road (why wasn’t this done a long time ago?). Hikers are unlikely to park by such signs. Doing this will offset new parking spaces created. With good signage there will be little need for ticketing.

Bryan Rosen



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