Reed vs. Sneddon: Challenger Takes First Pointed Swipe in Council Race
By Nick Masuda   |   August 19, 2021

With fire safety and the state of small business as key issues, the race for the District 4 seat on Santa Barbara City Council is officially set. It’ll be incumbent Kristen Sneddon against challenger Barrett Reed, with the filing deadline having expired on August 6. Sneddon says she is focused on showcasing what she has […]

Her Star is Rising: Built on Family and Wanderlust, Meagan Harmon Earns Coastal Commission Nod
By Nick Masuda   |   May 20, 2021

On May 4 — a day already close to her heart as a self-proclaimed Star Wars “nerd”— Meagan Harmon did something that many local political pundits didn’t think was possible when she received a call that a handful of other veteran politicos were waiting for.  The call was from the governor’s office inviting Harmon to […]

 

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Murillo Talks Second Term Goals
By Nick Schou   |   April 8, 2021

Readers of this column may have noticed that the Montecito Journal has in the past few months published a series of stories highlighting three candidates running for the office of Mayor of Santa Barbara: James Joyce, Deborah Schwartz, and last week, Randy Rowse. Noticeably absent on that list is the mayor herself, Cathy Murillo, who […]

Former Councilmember and Paradise Café Owner Randy Rowse Joins Mayoral Race
By Nick Schou   |   April 1, 2021

As a 66-year-old downtown businessman Randy Rowse is no stranger to Santa Barbara city politics. In 1983, Rowse opened the Paradise Café across the street from the Santa Barbara News-Press; last year he sold the joint, which has now been re-christened La Paloma Café. A longtime Democrat, Rowse dropped his party affiliation in the 1990s, […]

Attention California Legislators: Stand with Your Community!
By Sharon Byrne   |   March 25, 2021

There are two particularly bad bills wending through the legislature, proposed by Senate President pro Tempore Toni Atkins (Senate District 39, San Diego) and Scott Wiener (Senate District 11, San Francisco). They are determined to fulfill Governor Newsom’s pledge to build 3.5 million units of housing in California. Prior attempts that have failed to date: –Wiener’s […]

Santa Barbara Mayoral Candidate Deborah Schwartz is Not Your Figurehead
By Nick Schou   |   March 11, 2021

It’s sometimes said that Santa Barbara, with its powerful full-time city administrator overseeing more than 1,000 city employees in ten different agencies, tends to leave the mayor as a figurehead, not much more than a glorified seventh city councilmember who happens to represent all constituents rather than those in one district. But don’t tell that […]

Senator Limón and Assemblymember Steve Bennett to address Montecito Association Annual Meeting
By Sharon Byrne   |   February 11, 2021

The Montecito Association will host our Annual Members Meeting next Tuesday, February 9 at 4 pm via Zoom. We say goodbye to departing directors Peter van Duinwyk and Dorinne Lee Johnson, and welcome our newly elected board directors. We also appoint our officers at this meeting. Last year, we hosted California state Senator Hannah- Beth […]

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‘Coffee With a Black Guy’ Creator James Joyce Announces Santa Barbara Mayoral Bid
By Nick Schou   |   February 11, 2021

Four years ago, James Joyce III began an ambitious project called “Coffee With a Black Guy.” The idea was simple: Using a combination of wit, humor, and blunt honesty, Joyce sought to help Santa Barbara residents engage in a frank dialogue about issues relating to race and politics, both in our community and nationwide. The […]

The Great Barrington Declaration
By James Buckley   |   October 29, 2020

If any sentient being has been in doubt as to which side virtually all the major media and social media companies are on, non-coverage of both the Hunter Biden laptop e-mails and the Great Barrington Declaration should be proof positive of which side they’ve taken. When presidential candidate Joe Biden tells the debate moderator (in […]

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Join Us October 22 at 7pm
By Steven Libowitz   |   October 23, 2020

In an effort to connect the community and keep the conversation going, James Joyce III, founder of Coffee with a Black Guy, has scheduled one of his signature events over Zoom for 7 pm to 8 pm Thursday evening, October 22, three days after Dr. Kendi’s event.  “It’s great that Arts & Lectures has stepped […]

Controversy Erupts Over Cold Spring School District’s Measure L
By Nick Schou   |   October 22, 2020

There’s a long history in Montecito of well-intentioned yet pricey local school bond measures that have failed to win at the ballot box. In 2012, Montecito Union School unsuccessfully sought to raise $27 million for various campus improvements, an effort that collapsed under the weight of criticism by property tax paying opponents who viewed it […]

As Supervisors’ Pay Rises, Should Constituents’ Confidence Lower?
By Gwyn Lurie   |   October 21, 2020

On October 7, in a 3-2 vote, our County Board of Supervisors voted to give themselves an optional 3% pay raise. Supervisor Joan Hartmann justified her vote by explaining that “this job is a very demanding one with a lot of responsibilities that are very diverse.” Das Williams and Steve Lavagnino expressed similar justifications for […]

Natalia Alarcon and Wade Nomura Backed By Carpinteria’s Anti-Cannabis Contingent
By Nick Schou   |   October 13, 2020

This November, three candidates are running for Carpinteria’s five-member city council: Mayor Wade Nomura, a former professional skateboarder; Mark McIntire, a former Santa Barbara City College philosophy professor; and Natalia Alarcon, a nonprofit program manager and clinical psychologist. Of the trio, Nomura, an incumbent, is the only candidate with any experience in city politics. McIntire, […]

On My Soapbox: To Agree or Not?
By Leslie Westbrook   |   October 1, 2020

This week I’m taking the opportunity to sound off from my soapbox, since the lead item on the Summerland’s popularity vote “yea” or “nay” for a cannabis dispensary in town, which ran a few weeks ago, created quite a little stir that resulted in three letters to the editor printed over three issues. First, I […]

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