2018 SBCAN Dues are Due!

Please read the attached letter and you will see there is good reason to pay your dues before the end of the year--especially if you pay them through the Santa Barbara Gives! program. The letter refers to a Membership Meeting to be scheduled in January, but we are now looking for a date in February to avoid certain conflicts

If you already responded to our last notice, thank you and sorry for the duplicate message.

Thank you for your support.

Ken Hough
Executive Director
(805) 563-0463
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Time to renew SBCAN membership

Even as ash is falling over most of the county and some of you are having to evacuate, we need to look ahead to 2018.  If you are able to focus on this and read the attached letter, you will see there is good reason to pay your dues before the end of the year--especially if you pay them through the Santa Barbara Gives! program.

If you are too preoccupied with the fire, we understand and we will send reminders once the emergency is over.

Thanks for all your support over the years.  Please be safe. 

Ken Hough
Executive Director
(805) 563-0463
Message from SBCAN President Margaret Connell:

Dear Friend --

We at Santa Barbara County Action Network appreciate the support you have shown us over the years that has made it possible for us to continue nurturing our strong local network of progressive folks and creating bridges between environmental and social justice activism.

For sixteen years Santa Barbara County Action Network (SBCAN) has been the preeminent non-profit organization working on both sustainability and social justice issues throughout the county. We have many partner organizations, to be sure, but we always strive to be countywide and working on a wide range of progressive issues—especially looking for issues that might fall through the cracks otherwise.

In January 2018 we will again convene our annual Membership Meeting in Los Olivos and I urge you to participate. We are still determining the date and guest speakers. We will discuss recent issues and actions for 2018 (see below). The social hour will be a great chance to renew friendships and build support for SBCAN’s future.

With increasing competition for foundation support, we are all the more reliant on our members, major donors, and fundraisers. Therefore, we hope that you will make a membership donation that suits your budget and helps SBCAN continue its educational and advocacy role.

This year The Fund for Santa Barbara and The Santa Barbara Independent invited us to participate in a new fundraising program. We urge you to make your donations before the end of 2017 at this site:https://www.sbgives.org/nonprofit/santa-barbara-county-action-network/  By doing this, you will increase our chances of winning a share of matching funds raised to reward those non-profits who generate sizable donations.

If you prefer, it is easy—as always—to contribute at: https://sbcan.nationbuilder.com/membership_annual_dues. There is also an option for automatic monthly payments at https://sbcan.nationbuilder.com/membership_monthly_dues. You can also mail a check to P.O. Box 6174, Santa Maria, CA 93456.

We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you in January at our annual membership meeting.



Margaret Connell, President


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Meetings Dec 5, 2017 - SB County oil report, Goleta clean energy and bike plan, SM housing


Tomorrow, Tuesday, December 5, is a busy day for issues of interest to SBCAN members.

1. Oil and Gas Briefing. 

The County Board of Supervisors will be hearing a wide-ranging informational report from the County's Energy Division. The report includes information about the three proposed East Cat Canyon oil projects, data on violations over the last three years (the vast majority of citations issued by the County Petroleum office, the Fire Department, and the Air District are to one company...Greka, of course. The meeting is in Santa Barbara, but can be watched on cable or at Santa Maria's Betteravia Government Center. The agenda item is #4 and the link to the meeting agenda and staff reports is:


Here is a direct link to agenda item 4: 

If oil and gas production is of concern to you, you shouldn't miss this presentation and the Supervisors' discussion. Of course, there is always the opportunity to make public comment.

2. Clean Energy Goal for Goleta.  

During its afternoon session, around 2 PM, Goleta's City Council will consider adopting a 100% renewable energy goal by 2030.

The Goleta agenda is here: https://docs.google.com/gview?url=https%3A%2F%2Fgoleta.granicus.com%2FDocumentViewer.php%3Ffile%3Dgoleta_c7199c39646f489f21ae243b09e4088d.pdf%26view%3D1&embedded=true

3. Goleta's Bicycle Master Plan. 

During its evening session (same agenda listed above) the City Council will hear a report on the status of the Bicycle Master Plan.

4. Santa Maria's Consideration of Auxiliary Dwelling Unit Regulations. 

State law now requires that local jurisdictions allow second units on single-family properties, but--within certain limits--cities and counties can regulate ADUs. SBCAN's Board of Directors recently voted to oppose restrictions that would run counter to the intent of the state law.

One such restriction would be to require that the owner of the property be required to live on the property, either in the main house or in the ADU. The Santa Maria planning staff recommended that requirement in order to "maintain neighborhood character." The Planning Commission voted 3-2 to NOT include that requirement. SBCAN will encourage the Council to follow that recommendation and we encourage local residents to do so as well.

SBCAN Roundtables Thurs and Fri in SM and SB

Hi Jeanne –

Join us for our roundtables in Santa Maria and Santa Barbara:


SBCAN North County Roundtable

Thursday, November 9, 2017, 6:00 PM

Rabobank Conference Room, Northeast Corner of South Broadway and Battles 

Santa Maria, CA


(times are approximate)

  1. Call to Order by Janet Blevins; Introductions; Agenda Review (5 min.)
  2. Report on Joint Meeting of County Planning Commission and Agricultural Advisory Committee: Ken Hough. Topics include: streamlining the processes related to Farm Worker Housing, Right to Farm issues, updating the Ag Viability CEQA Thresholds, Economics of Agriculture and the effects of regulations on sustainability, how the ACC can best inform the Planning Commission on future development issues such as the Rancho La Laguna subdivision, and Cannabis issues. (20 min.)
  3. Status of 750+ Unconventional Oil Wells Proposed for East Cat Canyon. (10 min.)
  4. The Neighborhoods: Proposed New Housing Near Rancho Maria Golf Club. (10 min.)
  5. Open discussion about other items of interest. All (10 min.)
  6. Suggestions for next month’s agenda (December 14).  (5 min.)
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City of SM wants your input on the design of downtown - Oct 23 & 24

The city of Santa Maria is holding important workshops Monday and Tuesday to get input on the future of its downtown and how to make its streets safer, efficient and fun.  We hope you can participate in one or more of these workshops:


Help enliven Downtown Santa Maria and build a better Broadway! 

Share your opinions and help guide your fellow neighbors at upcoming Community Design Charrette events this Monday 10/23 and Tuesday 10/24.

All activities will be in English and Spanish!
¡Todas las actividades estarán en inglés y español!

Monday, October 23, 2017
9:00am - 1:00pm
Downtown Walking Tour, Discussions and Lunch
Walk the Downtown with the project team and help us develop goals and objectives.
@ Community Development Conference Room
110 S. Pine Street, No. 101. Santa Maria, CA 

6:00pm - 8:00pm
Community Workshop #1
Bring your friends, family, and neighbors to have an engaging community conversation about the future of Downtown Santa Maria!
@ Shepard Hall, Santa Maria Public Library
421 S McClelland St, Santa Maria, CA 93454

Tuesday, October 24, 2017
1:00pm - 2:00pm 
Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting

Engage with the project team to discuss and visualize your visions for Downtown.
@ Community Development Conference Room
110 S. Pine Street, No. 101. Santa Maria, CA 

6:00pm - 8:00pm 
Community Workshop #2

Bring your friends, family, and neighbors to have an engaging community conversation how to make downtown streets safer, efficient, and fun! 
@ Shepard Hall, Santa Maria Public Library
421 S McClelland St. Santa Maria, CA 93454


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SBCAN SC Roundtable Fri, Oct 20 at noon - join us!

SBCAN South County Roundtable

Friday, October 20, 2017, Noon

Union Bank’s Back Patio, 15 East Carrillo St., Santa Barbara, CA


(times are approximate)

  1. Call to Order by Chair Dick Flacks. Introductions; Agenda Review (5 min.)
  2. Reflections on City of Santa Barbara Election. Dick Flacks will lead a discussion about the politics and policy issues in play with this upcoming municipal election. Issues include how to revive retail on State Street, whether to approve a sales tax to better maintain infrastructure, and more. (30 min.)
  3. Status of Average Unit Density and Tenants Rights in the City of Santa Barbara. Frank Rodriguez of CAUSE and Mickey Flacks will lead a discussion of these issues. (15 min.)
  4. “Soul of the City:” John Klein will brief us on the short film he is producing, which is both a tribute to an unsung Latino leader and role model in Santa Barbara, Francisco Aguilera, and a reminder to the community of the fragility of the public land known as East Beach. 
  5. Brief updates from participants. (2 to 5 min. each)
  6. Next meeting. Our next meeting is scheduled for November 10.

NC Roundtable cancelled tonight, SC Roundtable rescheduled

The North County Roundtable scheduled for tonight has been cancelled. We hope you will attend the county's Storm Water meeting instead. (See yesterday's action alert.)

The South County Roundtable scheduled for tomorrow has been postponed to next Friday, October 20. We will send more details later.

Thank you,

Ken Hough
SBCAN Executive Director


Broke: The Santa Barbara Oil Pipeline Spill of 2015 documentary needs your help

Hi Friend –

Longtime SBCAN member and supporter Gail Osherenko has produced a film about the 2015 oil spill at Refugio Beach. Now she has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise needed funds to complete and promote the film. It will be about 55 min long. 

Please go to https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/880772739/broke-the-santa-barbara-oil-pipeline-spill-of-2015?ref=newest to read about the film and the campaign and to view the short trailer. 

And after you make a pledge, forward the information via Facebook or other methods.  Thanks!

Here's the message from Gail Osherenko:

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SBCAN encourages you to participate in the Countywide Storm Water Resource Plan

The Santa Barbara County Water Agency (SBCWA) is holding a meeting on Thursday to receive public input on the preparation of a Santa Barbara Countywide Integrated Storm Water Resource Plan (SWRP).
5:30 p.m. Thurs., Oct. 12
Betteravia Admin Complex
511 E. Lakeside Parkway 93454
This meeting is being held by the SBCWA and its partner agencies, which include the cities of Buellton, Carpinteria, Goleta, Guadalupe and Solvang; Carpinteria Valley and Montecito water districts; and UCSB. 
Public input from these meetings will inform the development of the Plan. The SWRP is funded by a state planning grant awarded to the County pursuant to the Stormwater Resource Planning Act (SB 985).
In 2014, the California Legislature adopted SB 985 that requires public agencies to develop a stormwater resource plan as part of the grant funding request process, including a collaborative effort with input from stakeholders throughout the County in order to identify and prioritize multiple benefit  stormwater (and dry weather) runoff projects that improve regional water self-reliance, and adapt to the effects on water supply arising from climate change. Beneficial projects include improving stormwater quality, increasing water supplies, flood management, and environmental and community benefits.
For information about this meeting and how to provide public comment, contact John Karamitsos, Program Specialist, at (805)739-8761 or Johnk@cosbpw.net. For more information on the SBCWA, visit www.countyofsb.org/pwd/wateragency.sbc.

You can find the Board of Supervisor’s Agenda letter regarding the project here, and a PowerPoint presentation used earlier in the process with background information here.


SBCAN: Phillips 66 drops rail spur lawsuit

In what appears to be the final chapter of this saga, Phillips 66 has dropped its lawsuit against San Luis Obispo County challenging the county's denial of its project.

Two and a half years ago, SBCAN raised the alarm in Santa Barbara County regarding the possibility of dangerous crude-oil trains bringing Canadian tar-sands oil through our county. In July 2015, SBCAN published a report prepared by Jane Baxter detailing the many hazards to our communities and to our coastal and other environmental resources.

SBCAN and others encouraged several of our local jurisdictions to urge SLO to deny the project. The SLO County Board of Supervisors upheld the Planning Commission's denial. Now, the last-ditch lawsuit has been dropped.

Here's an article in The Tribune: Phillips 66 agrees to drop lawsuit over oil trains to Nipomo refinery


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Santa Barbara County Action Network
Santa Barbara County Action Network (SBCAN) works to promote social and economic justice, to preserve our environmental and agricultural resources, and to create sustainable communities.