Did You Know? Bonnie Donovan
Remember the Public Records Request we made to the city of Santa Barbara on July 2, for several democratic voters, whose votes were not counted?
The response they had received from the city was that the time to contest the election was over. They were simply asking why the online website showed they had not voted at all.
Did You Know? filed the records request on the day the records of the ballots were on the agenda for approval to be destroyed. Santa Barbara City Council member Eric Friedman came to the rescue of his constituents and made a motion to halt the destruction and to fill the request.
After four extensions by the city, on the deadline again, last Monday, we received a denial by City Attorney Ariel Calonne, who wrote, “The time period to request information from that election had elapsed.”
However, we requested this information in July, and at the same City Council meeting, the consent for destruction was on the agenda. Is that censorship? The need-to-know basis?
The information should have still been available, and the City Council told the staff to fill the request. Unless the staff were just slow walking it, so the time would lapse, and it would just be a moot point.
However, during last Tuesday’s City Council’s open public comment, several citizens voiced their objection to the city’s lack of response to the PRAR regarding the ballots. That evening City Attorney Calonne responded to one of the citizens, a local attorney, and suggested a conference call ASAP to work through this. We will keep you posted — it is imperative each vote is counted to protect our system!
The finale of last Tuesday’s City Council meeting: Mayor Cathy Murillo reported that two homeless organizations, SB ACT and City Net, conducted a survey last week due to the complaints of increasing homeless on the streets.
The homeless are being surveyed to determine who they are and why they are coming. Repeatedly the newspaper has reported, and numerous complaints have been made to homeless organizations as well as City Council, that the inmates are released from multiple counties and states and then are delivered to Santa Barbara. They also inform these released inmates that Santa Barbara has all the services they require.
Our local organizations welcome them with open arms, sign them up for stipends and in return get funding to run their organizations.
Why does our local government encourage this population to be relocated to one of the most expensive places to live with a chronic lack of housing? Where is the equity in putting these newly released inmates with no previous ties to SB whatsoever, into a no-win situation for anybody?
By the way, this practice was begun pre-COVID-19.
And speaking of our self-dealing, head-in-the-sand politicians, last Tuesday, did anyone see Gov. Gavin Newsom begging California residents to stop moving out of the state?
Across the board an alarming number of Californians have been picking up stakes and relocating to more hospitable states.
What are some of the reasons? More amenable taxes, a business-friendly atmosphere, and a more prevailing attitude of support toward law and order.
This is where your vote can turn California back in the right direction. The election is in three weeks! Make changes now! Stop taxing the people out of the state.
Any proposition that increases taxes, vote NO.
Look at our schools! Our school systems have lost their ratings and are now ranked 47th out of 50.
Throwing more money at the schools is more money they waste. It has been proven they do not know how to lead the California school system back into educational excellence. That is called incompetency.
As we have stated in earlier columns, California’s education system, like the state, was golden and ranked No. 3 in the country, but no longer, and not for a long time. If voters have followed our school records, it is high time to vote out incumbents!
We owe all children the best education as they are our future. We also owe these same children a safe and decent environment in which to grow up.
Speaking of decency, we hope it was noted how the incumbent Santa Barbara Unified School District board ignored the strong voice of disapproval and alarm for the newly implemented Teen Talk sex education for our children.
Again, voting is supremely important, and the people we elect to office, should be held accountable to lead in the manner and direction that got them elected. Otherwise, they should be voted out of office. Follow-through is a big, short coming with all the common excuses for no action.
What you allow, is what will continue.
“Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves. And the only way they can do this is by not voting.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt