Send Who to SBCAG?

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By William Smithers

It has been announced that the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments has authorized $2.5 million to be spent toward creating, at long last, a Surfrider commuter train schedule serving Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara and Goleta.

The new schedule would provide train service at commuter-friendly hours between these communities, and locally the Metropolitan Transit District would provide “last mile” service from train depots.

This is a splendid accomplishment, achieving what huge numbers of those who work here, but can't afford to live here, have wanted for years.

With this in mind, consider the extreme irrationality of sending Santa Barbara council member Jason Dominguez to SBCAG as this city's representative, as those anti-Murillo voters would like to do.

Anyone who has followed city council debates and transactions since Dominguez was elected from District 1 has seen that Mr. Dominguez would rather have blood drained from his aorta than spend municipal improvement dollars.

While fiscal responsibility is prudent, and Dominguez can be praised for seeking to protect the pocketbooks of his constituents, blind obsession with penny-pinching can be, and often is, harmful to the welfare of the whole community.

Witness Dominguez's council vote – the only one - against paying for methods to eliminate, or alleviate, the stink, algaic contamination, environmental degradation and wildlife diminution at the city's Andree Clark Bird Refuge.

“No, wait a year.” said Dominguez, “Maybe science will come up with a solution that will cost little or nothing.”

This perfervid attitude, ignoring the immediate plight of Santa Barbarans not in his district, could certainly not be counted on to support expensive but enlightened measures such as the new Surfrider commuter schedule.

This is only additional evidence that someone elected by the entire community should represent Santa Barbara at SBCAG.

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Bird Feb 16, 2018 09:04 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

And PS, re the subject of this posting, the SBCAG: the subject matter of this wonkish board has never been among Cathy Murillo's interests. No denigration intended in writing that her interests have been with youth, with gang deterrence, with social justice interests generally. That was so when she and her ex, David Pritchett, were journalists. That's great; we need that involvement and caring! BUT we also need those who are interested in and capable of delving into detailed transportation and other wonkish studies. In that, Mr. Dominguez is the superior choice for the city seat. Given that there is only so much time in a day, a new job, on-going housing issues and human need concerns, one can't help but wonder why she, new to the mayoral job, would be so insistent on putting the time into reading EIRs, etc.

Bird Feb 16, 2018 08:57 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Mr. Smithers, "I regard council member Dominguez's action in this matter as an irresponsible affront to the concerns of those not in his district, ...." Actually, Dominguez lives close to the bird refuge and is well aware of the place and the situation, much closer than you, no doubt. The district lines for districts 1 and 3 were drawn, as you no doubt know, on the basis of ethnicity so that there would be a "majority minority", not on the basis of logical geography or neighborhoods or any other shared qualities than self-declared ethnicity. ...But thank you for using your real name; names, including chosen ones, as mine, are easier to follow in a discussion than just numbers.

Mesarats Feb 15, 2018 09:02 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Mr Smithers clearly doesn’t understand the multiple local departments, state and Federal agencies are involved with the restoration of the “turd refuge” nor the work in progress. See below for the status: http://services.santabarbaraca.gov/CAP/MG133079/AS133083/AS133097/AS133106/AI136792/DO136793/DO_136793.pdf

pii Feb 15, 2018 08:24 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

"$2.5 Million toward creating". So how long will that last? Or is that just a study? Are we talking subsidized train service? How much does it cost to run 6 cars and an engine from SB to VTA and back?

a-1527047006 Feb 16, 2018 12:52 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

They’re adding another a. m. train to Goleta from the South on April 1.

Channelfog Feb 15, 2018 08:43 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

That is a good question since the rails are not public. They are owned by Union Pacific, a freight company. Their freight trains have priority use of the rails and they charge the public a pretty penny for use of their rails. Any commuter rail would undoubtedly require the installation of more sidings to allow trains to pass and to park for storage. The real waste is the High Speed Rail line to nowhere that has been started but will likely never be finished, but that is yet another huge political morass. The money being squandered on the High Speed Rail Project would surely be enough money to achieve commuter rail on existing lines in many parts of the State.

El Barbareno Feb 15, 2018 07:31 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

A big waste of taxpayer dollars.

jqb Feb 14, 2018 10:12 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Fortunately, no one of any substance attends to the comments at EdHat.

Roger Feb 14, 2018 09:00 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

So no one is going to clean up the Turd refuge?

Ahchooo Feb 14, 2018 03:23 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

I haven't figured out which side I'm on in this fight, but it bothers me that the council apparently finagled the rules, or maybe broke them, to change the vote. It just doesn't smell right. The district vs. at-large rep explanation seems weak. Regarding 'perfervid,' thanks, Mr. Smithers, for teaching me a new word (I had to look it up).

REX OF SB Feb 14, 2018 06:00 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Yeah, I had to look that up, too. I thought it meant the same as covfefe.

mrtrump Feb 14, 2018 02:20 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Cathy Murillo supported Helene Schneider when then Mayor Schneider called for people to sue SBCAG and threatened to withhold the Coastal Development Permit for the Highway 101 widening project. The City of Santa Barbara, because of those two acts by Schneider/Murillo, lost tens of millions of federal transportation dollars. At least Dominguez comes in with a clean slate as far as SBCAG is concerned.

mrtrump Feb 14, 2018 06:10 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

To Mas Gaviota @ 3:11 P.M- Jason Dominguez has never supported the position of encouraging people to sue SBCAG nor has he ever supported the position that the city withhold the required permits for the 101 widening project if the city did not get $100 million for city- owned street repairs from SBCAG. Both of those things Helene Schneider and Cathy Murillo did in 2014. Because of the actions of Schneider/Murillo the U.S. Department of Transportation refused requests from SBCAG for federal funding of the 101 project. In January, 2017 the council voted to send a letter to CalTrans objecting to the Draft Revised EIR for the 101 project, There was no threat of suing SBCAG or withholding permits in the January, 2017 vote.

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 03:11 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

But he was on the council in 2017 when he voted to support the same policy, that is to reject the eir.

mrtrump Feb 14, 2018 02:53 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Dominguez was not on the council in 2014 when Schneider called for people to sue SBCAG and threatened to withhold the required permits for the 101 project. Murillo supported Schneider's actions. Threatening to sue and withhold required permits from the very people you're trying to get money from is stupid.

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 02:40 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

In January 2017 the entire City Council, including newcommer Dominguez, voted to object to the Caltrans EIR. So what is your point?

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 02:04 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Mr. Smithers, this is embarrassing to read. We get it that you are emotionally invested in Cathy, probably fell for her "I'm so nice and I care about you" schtick. But you are willfully blinding yourself to the painfully obvious: this woman cannot run a meeting, lacks basic executive skills, and is too vindictive and thin-skinned for this office. If it wasn't Dominguez, she'd be targeting someone else who dared to openly disagree with her (watch out, Sneddon). You rant about the Bird Refuge, but Cathy was completely AWOL during the Montecito mudslide. Lodge, Conklin, Blum and Schneider would never have been absent during such a major disaster! Then she broke the law and reintroduced an agenda item in a personally vindictive political move. What you are seeing is the real Cathy. We know it's not pretty. That's why 72% wanted Anyone But Cathy for mayor.

a-1527047006 Feb 15, 2018 09:07 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

The city's election process would be better served if no candidate received more than 50% of the vote to hold a run-off between the top two. This is done in many jurisdictions and would preclude the constantly lurking question about someone winning with only 28% of the vote.

Wm. Smithers Feb 14, 2018 06:51 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Odd - I find your contribution embarrassing. You see yourself as a reasoned debater, while characterizing my regard for Mayor Murillo as “emotional” and the result of “falling for” some line of blarney. You are sensible you tell us; I am deluded and ignorant. My concern as to council member Dominguez's vote to do nothing re the contamination at the Astree Clark Bird Refuge is a “rant,” but your unflattering characterizations of Ms. Murillo's abilities and character are objective observations. In fact, I have seen most of the city council sessions this year. I find Ms. Murillo's conduct of meetings competent and respectful of others. I have the same opinion as to previous council sessions I've watched. I also see that public commentators praise her for coming to their homes or relevant sites to assess their concerns. You condemn Ms. Murillo's not going to the sites of our fires and mud slides, ignoring her explanation that doing so would have required emergency personnel to devote some of their time to assuring her safety. But you absolutely KNOW what losing mayoral candidates would have done since this knowledge is part of your instinctive grasp of reality, even though you failed to mention council member Sneddon's public praise of Mayor Murillo's behavior during those crises as “above and beyond” what might be expected from her. You and others repeatedly state – or imply - that a candidate in a five-person race who receives via plurality the most votes should not be considered a legitimate winner; if these are other than childish wishes, I don't know what to call them. I was active several years ago in supporting “Instant Runoff Voting” in such cases. To my knowledge, you and others voicing this complaint have done nothing in that regard but complain endlessly about the result in this particular case. And even had you shown some political support for that method, what do you propose the result could be under current law other than what it has been? After reviewing the language and nature of your post- using phrases and slogans which I think it's fair to say you did not originate – I feel quite confident in my intellectual capacity and expressive skills by comparison. And always I actually identify who is giving my opinion. William Smithers

REX OF SB Feb 14, 2018 05:55 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

"Febble minded?" Mr. Pot, meet Mr. Kettle.

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 03:41 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

To the out-of-control anon: you spelled feeble wrong in your rant about spelling, LOL!!

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 03:40 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

MAS GAVIOTA, you cannot say on any basis whatsoever that Murillo would have won in a one-on-one race. The other voters don't just disappear, they pick a new side. There is no way to tell, however, odds are very much against your hypothetical theory.

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 03:06 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Murillo one on one with any of the other candidates would have won as well.

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 02:59 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

@MAS GAVIOTA: You are just as FEBBLE-MINDED and UNEDUCATED as Murrillo! Learn to spell correctly---UNDERSTAND not UNDERSTND! Yeah, these are the supporters of Murrillo----Provincial and Limited

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 02:51 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

MAS GAVIOTA, where is the misunderstanding of elections? I think it might be you that is confused. 28% of the vote went to Murillo, who won with the "most votes", and the other 72% was split among the other candidates, aka Anything But Cathy.

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 02:33 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

You really do not understnd how elections work. The candidate with the most votes wins. I am sorry that your candidate did not win. I have watched every City Council meeting this year and Murillo has done an excellent job.

Wm. Smithers Feb 14, 2018 01:26 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

The most shameful comment here – politically and socially – is the one defending Santa Barbara city council member Jason Dominguez's lone vote not to spend any money to alleviate, or ameliorate, the stink, algaic contamination, environmental damage and wildlife diminution at the Andree Clark Bird Refuge. This poster obviously shares Dominguez's contempt for the discomfort and concern of those living in a significant area of Santa Barbara. Anyone who watched the TV presentation by city staff on various possible means to deal with this distressing problem knows that various possibilities, with various probable costs and effects – including doing nothing – were given to council. All council members except Dominguez chose to adopt one of the less expensive programs intended to address the problem. That it is difficult to predict the precise consequences of any choice, considering especially the unknowable future of climatic conditions, was not thought by other council members to justify, as Dominguez voted, doing nothing. I regard council member Dominguez's action in this matter as an irresponsible affront to the concerns of those not in his district, in effect echoing Marie Antoinette's alleged response to being told people have no bread: “Let them eat cake!” In other words, “Let them suffer until and unless science comes up with something that may cost less!” This extreme attitude toward municipal spending, characteristic of Mr. Dominguez, is not, in my view, to be trusted in a more far-reaching political forum. Mayor Murillo, not he, should represent Santa Barbara on the SB County Association of Governments. William Smithers

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 01:32 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

....when are you going to run out of words?

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 01:26 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

No matter how much the dwindling number of supporters want to prop up the new msyor, it is abundantly obvious that the wheels are falling off her bandwagon. I see her as a very angry and vindictive Queen Carlotta. When words come out of her face, all I hear is the Loser Horn from The Price is Right game show. "Cathy!! C'mon downnnnnn!!"

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 03:09 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Calling people names makes you look like you have no real ideas. Just saying.

22701015201 Feb 14, 2018 12:49 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Pathetic attempt to prop up Murillo. It's just sad that Withers thinks this helps her. If anything he has only further damaged Murillo. --- Her mask is finally coming off. It will be interesting to see what people really think of her once its completely gone.

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 12:49 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

@A-1518639493 and 22701015201----Both of you are correct! Smithers, like Murrillo, is definitely blowing smoke. In fact, maybe the both of them are blowing smoke up the butt cheeks of each other because they seem to be both highly skilled in that area! Jason Dominguez is DEFINITELY logical and rational unlike our Dumb as Dirt Mayor who cannot even get out of her own way to make a decision. Smithers stop drinking the Murrillo Kool-Aid and start attending City Council meetings to view the Maladroit you voted for as Mayor of Santa Barbara.

Mas Gaviota Feb 14, 2018 02:29 PM
Send Who to SBCAG?

When you bust out "kool-aid" references and infantile statements like "dumb as dirt" you have already lost the argument.

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 11:38 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Smithers is blowing smoke! The issue has absolutely nothing to do with the positions that Dominguez has taken or will take in the future. These are the facts of the case: Dominguez was appointed to the SBCAG a month ago by the SB City Council. On Tuesday, three of the six members voted to remove him with Hart abstaining. Murillo's vote to dump Dominguez was self serving! Friedman's reason stating that a city council member elected by a district could not represent the people outside that district is moronic! Ever hear of a state senator, assembly person, or member of congress, Eric? They are all voted into office by district votes! Rowse changed his previous vote from appointing Dominguez a moth ago to voting him out on Tuesday. No reason was given by Rowse for his about face. There is still no solid reason given as to why Dominguez was voted out after only one month. The issue is: Why was this man removed from his post?

2contango Feb 14, 2018 11:23 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

I wouldn't be surprised if many of Dominguez's eastside constituents haven't forgotten when the council thought it was prudent to pay hundreds of dollars each for trash cans on State Street while dumping transients on Milpas. Or when the council thought that workforce housing meant small condos priced at at $1 million plus while eastside families scrambled for family housing. If Dominguez is skeptical, it may be because his constituents have lost trust in the city's priorities, which seem to have shifted away from working people and toward developers and State Street property owners.

22701015201 Feb 14, 2018 11:11 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Yes, Cherry Picked News. - What LOCALINSB states is correct. This just bolsters why Dominguez is the perfect choice for SBCAG. He wants evidence that something will work before he votes to spend money on it. He doesn't want to throw money away if there isn't substantial evidence that the fix will work. Cathy would never do that, which is why we can't trust her on SBCAG. We need someone logical and rational and no one would use those words to describe Cathy.

a-1527047006 Feb 14, 2018 11:04 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Mr. Smithers, you will convince more people of your beliefs if you present them with less bias. When I see ridiculously extreme statements like "...would rather have blood drained from his aorta...", it is difficult not to dismiss your point entirely.

LocalinSB Feb 14, 2018 11:00 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Cherry picked news again. Dominguez voted against the plan for Andree Clark Bird Refuge because Staff could not give any probability that all the money spent would actually decrease the odors long-term. Dominguez wanted more research to find a solution for a true fix for Santa Barbara. That could have included researching what other Cities have done as well as getting funding for further study that would benefit Santa Barbara and other Cities. Other's decided to throw money at the problem, cross their fingers and hope.

2contango Feb 14, 2018 10:31 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

You imply, without evidence, that Dominguez would have opposed the Surfliner funding. For all we know, he supports it, particularly considering that the proposal was developed while Dominguez was on the SBCAG board. Maybe someone should ask him.

Channelfog Feb 14, 2018 09:57 AM
Send Who to SBCAG?

Getting commuters onto trains and off of the 101 is fabulous! While it may be overdue, it is finally happening, well done.

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