Third District Issues
Of Santa Barbara County’s five districts, the third is the largest and most diverse. It runs from Guadalupe to the Gaviota Coast to Goleta, and extends from parts of Santa Maria, south through Los Alamos, all the way to Isla Vista and UCSB. It stretches east from Vandenberg Village and parts of Lompoc, through the Santa Ynez Valley, to the Los Padres Mountains.
The third district supports many different economic sectors, including agriculture, tourism and recreation, education, and high tech. It is home to a broad diversity of people.
The district includes several government jurisdictions: the federal government (Vandenberg Air Force Base and national forests); state government (UCSB and state parks); the Chumash Tribe; and incorporated cities and unincorporated County lands.
Representing such an expansive and complex district requires someone willing to listen carefully, work hard, and do their homework. Our district must have a County Supervisor who understands the importance of creating partnerships and finding common ground among all these varied interests. Such a person must delight in this diversity and embrace opportunities to support a broad range of community needs. Experience helps and I have it.
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Signature Issues (by topic) | Community Highlights (by area)
An extraordinary range of issues fall within the purview of the County’s 21 departments, ranging from public health and safety, maintaining the social safety net, criminal justice, and administrative services (elections, records, taxes). For people who don’t live in a city, the County also provides “municipal services” such as development permits and public facilities (roads and parks). In addition to overseeing policy and budget related to these matters, Supervisor Hartmann has assumed a leadership role in the transition to a renewable energy economy, planning for new parks, trails and open space, including along the Gaviota Coast, and a new initiative to transform County departments for success well into the future.
Supervisor Hartmann has championed the County’s transition to a low-carbon green economy. The County has begun converting its own campuses to more energy-efficient buildings, installing solar with battery storage, electrifying its fleet and installing electric charging stations while instituting new programs to reduce vehicle miles traveled by employees.
The County has also adopted a Strategic Energy Plan to promote commercial renewable development and the Board just approved the Strauss Wind Project that will triple the County’s renewable energy production, increase resiliency and create jobs. She also convened stakeholders to engage Southern California Edison in discussions of alternatives to expansion of the Elwood Peaker Plant. As a result, major new battery storage projects are under construction in the Goleta area. The Energy and Climate Action Plan tracks greenhouse gas emissions from different sectors throughout the County and identifies reduction strategies and measures. Key among these is Community Choice Energy. The County recently joined with Monterey Bay Clean Power (soon to be renamed Central Coast Community Energy) and by early 2021, our electricity will be carbon-free with “profits” used to provide customer rebates and investment in renewable energy projects, especially in vulnerable communities.
Countywide Recreation Master Plan and the Gaviota Coast
Supervisor Hartmann has been a vigorous advocate for a first-ever strategic planning program for parks, trails, and recreation facilities throughout Santa Barbara County. There is particular focus on North County where the need for new trails, open space and beach access is great. The Master Plan will assess existing facilities, address unmet recreation needs, identify a range of recreation improvements, and foster coordination and cooperation among the County, cities, agencies within the County, and non-profit and private recreation service providers. Key goals include increased interagency cooperation and potentially shared funding programs for needed parks and recreation facilities. The Master Plan will help the County and participating agencies qualify to better compete for project funding, including California Proposition 68 grant funding, and to streamline required environmental review.
Supervisor Hartmann was also an energetic proponent for creation of the new 24,500-acre Dangermond Preserve, an expansion at Jalama County Beach Park that more than doubled its size, the soon-to-be opened Baron Ranch Coast-to-Crest Trail and the planning effort for recreational use at the 1000-acre Baron Ranch along with some other Gaviota Coast projects in the works.
County Government Efficiency and Effectiveness
Soon after Supervisor Hartmann joined the Board in 2017, the County embarked on the Renew 2022 initiative to address financial and organizational challenges and make decisions that will transform the County for success well into the future. In January 2018, the Board of Supervisors approved more than 100 initiatives generated by employee working groups focused on revisioning our organization and redesigning how we work so we can deliver services to residents at the highest level of excellence. Major innovations have resulted from across-department, collaborative programs. One example is the Co-Response Initiative where a specially trained psychologist and deputy sheriff team up to answer 911 calls to de-escalate mental health crises so individuals get the treatment they need rather than ending up in jail. Another example is Borderless Dispatch that coordinates fire departments and ambulances across jurisdictions to ensure that we deliver the closes available responder to any emergency. Yet another example is adoption of the ACE Initiative (Adverse Childhood Experiences) to identify children who have suffered major traumas and get them and their families the support they need to avoid adverse health and mental health impacts in the future. These are just a few of the initiatives that treat underlying problems instead of just symptoms, improving lives while reducing long-term costs.
The County has taken Renew 2022 to the next step by hiring an outside firm that, over the next four years, will audit the performance of each of its 21 departments to highlight opportunities for improvements, identify new benchmarks, and share financial and operational best practices from other similar counties across the state and country. The Board and CEO were the first offices to be examined and a key recommendation is the need for us to develop a unified expression of community goals that express the Board’s priorities and can be used to measure and report progress to the community. This will improve strategic alignment across County departments and establish even greater transparency and accountability in County government.
Supervisor Hartmann is now focusing her attention on the issues of homelessness in our County and on identifying new strategies for addressing workforce housing and the jobs housing imbalance that requires people to commute long distances, keeping them away from their families, hobbies and civic life. Both issues require a broad, regional approach that requires collaboration among cities and several County departments.
I have worked throughout the Third District to respond to community interests and achieve community goals. Below is a sample of my activities in each community.
GUADALUPE, TANGLEWOOD & CASMALIA
Parks and Recreation
- Made improvements to Guadalupe Dunes County Park, a significant attraction for residents and visitors alike including Main Street upgrades to prevent flooding and a new entrance sign, gates ,and restroom renovations
- Partnering with the State Coastal Conservancy to develop pedestrian and bike path from the City to the Dunes (Beach Multi-Use Trail Feasibility Study now underway)
- Supporting major renovation for City’s Leroy Park (provided support letters for successful $4.4M CDBG grant application and have actively participated in community planning for the project (to be completed by 7/21); and upgrades for Jack O’Connell Park by connecting Union Local 805 to help with major tree planting project and writing support letters for City’s Prop 68 grant proposal
Road Safety and Circulation
- Actively participate in Resilience Guadalupe Leadership Team which aims to promote significant upgrades to critical travel routes—the SR 1 and ST 166 corridors; to develop plans for walking, biking, and transit improvements to enhance community connectivity (including support for the successful grant application for the Guadalupe Multimodal and Revitalization Plan); working with CalTrans for a safe crossing to link the Pasadara homes to downtown
- Supported HEAL Resolutions by School District and City and connected BiCiCentro to local schools where Safe Routes to School Education Program has been implemented and Mobile Bike Kitchen is being planned; also helping lead Ciclovia 2020 Open Streets planning
Education and Learning
- Take part in efforts to establish Universal Preschool for Guadalupe’s children (community partners are working with the School District to ensure quality pre-K learning experiences).
- Ensured library funding and services are maintained
Partnerships and Support
- Established strong working partnership with Guadalupe’s elected officials and staff to address community priorities
- Have actively identified and supported new funding opportunities such as
- 2018 Community Development Block grant application for City’s much needed wastewater plant improvements
- Senior Arthritis Classes
- California Advanced Services Fund grant application for internet access and Chromebooks benefitting children, families, elderly, and disabled
- Guadalupe Sports Hall of Fame grant request
- Helped to Sponsor Guadalupe Kids Come First
- Collaborate with Community Health Centers of the Central Coast (CHCCC) to provide mental health services in Guadalupe
- Hold regular office hours, and participate in community events including parades and Mexican Independence Day festivities
TANGLEWOOD AND CASMALIA
- Partnered with neighborhood leaders in Tanglewood on neighborhood clean-up and later connected them with Union Local 805 to do neighborhood entryway upgrades; hold Tanglewood office hours at school library
- Hold office hours in Casmalia with County Fire to discuss fire safety and consult with community members to discuss proposed projects and track issues of concern
- Maintained community library funding
- Creating a safer, more connected community with bike lanes, crosswalks, and planning for a new bridge with gateway monuments
- Installed a new bus stop, celebrating Los Alamos’ rich history
- Ushered the cemetery’s land swap through the County process
- Working to obtain CalTrans encroachment permits for trash receptacles along Bell Street
- Planning for a hardscape soccer court
- Hold regular office hours in Los Alamos, participate in Bark for Books, Old Days, and Summer in the Park fund-raisers, and in planning for a revamped Community Advisory Committee
BURTON MESA COMMUNITIES
Vandenberg Village, Mission Hills, Mesa Oaks, and Providence Landing
- Reducing risk of wildfire by securing over $2 million for Lompoc Valley Fuel Reduction Project over the next 4 years
- Improving road safety by sponsoring community forum on streets and roads, enhanced lighting and signage at Highway 246 roundabout; working on emergency evacuation planning
- Worked to keep neighborhood libraries open and fought for budget enhancements to maintain services
- Secured initial funding and also submission of a major Prop 68 grant proposal for new Park and Playground in Vandenberg Village and supported creation of the Dangermond Preserve resulting in 36-acre expansion of Jalama County Park (now planning for increased trails and parking there).
- Worked with the Vandenberg Village Community Services District to allow drilling of a test water well for possible future use.
- Joined with the City of Lompoc and other County departments to relocate a large homeless population from the riverbank, provide services to those in need, and begin river clean up.
- Eliminated cannabis retail license opportunity in Vandenberg Village from County ordinance in accord with community preference
- Hold regular office hours in Vandenberg Village & Mission Hills and participate in community events such as Route 1 Farmer’s Market and Burton Mesa hikes
SANTA YNEZ VALLEY
- Highway Safety—Championed Highway 154, 246 & 101 Traffic and Safety Study to identify system-wide improvements to reduce accidents; held Highway 154 Safety Forum, and chair the newly formed Highway 154 Safety Committee staffed by SBCAG
- Senior Services—Facilitated long-term leases for Solvang and Buellton Senior Centers and supported major grant for Buellton’s Senior Center as well as agreement for emergency power in case of power shutoffs
- Libraries—Supported more funding to maintain service levels
- Bikes & Mobility—Advocated for the Santa Ynez Valley Bike Master Plan and sponsored successful bicycle tourism summit; organizing collaborative Safe Routes to School bike education program
- Water security—Involved in Santa Ynez Uplands sustainable groundwater management planning
- Los Olivos CSD—Supported planning and formation of this new CSD to address wastewater treatment in the Special Problems Area
- Camp 4—Negotiated balanced agreement with the Chumash to limit development on Camp 4 to housing and tribal facilities
- Recreation—Initiated County contribution to the proposed Santa Ynez Valley Aquatics Complex and helped facilitate Prop 68 grant proposal
- Tourism—Developing new Farm-Stay Ordinance to promote agricultural tourism
- Cannabis—Successfully fought for bans on small parcels and a County-wide cap (1761 acres); now seeking additional measures to reduce conflicts with traditional agricultural operations and protect urban areas from odors
- Conduct bi-weekly Solvang office hours, hold meetings by appointment, and take part in many community activities
- Established strong working partnership with Goleta’s City Council and staff to address community priorities
- Leading the transition to a low-carbon green economy in Santa Barbara County, by among other things, encouraging SCE to develop battery storage and renewables in the Goleta area by resisting proposals to upgrade the Elwood Peaker Plant
- Protecting the Gaviota Coast and increasing park, trail, and recreational opportunities including at Baron Ranch; led process to adopt the Gaviota Coast Plan
- Supported the formation of an independent Goleta Library and fought efforts to cut hours and services
- Increased air quality monitoring with new mobile unit to be stationed in Goleta
- Hold office hours and sponsor forums, most recently on Fire Safety with the County Fire Department and Goleta’s mayor and Baron Ranch Recreation Plan
IV Self-Governance—Working together in partnership with IV’s elected representatives to address priorities set by the community.
- Vigorously campaigned first for the IV Community Service District (CSD) formation and then the user tax, without which the IVCSD would have been dissolved
- Secured office space for IV CSD by transferring 3rd District office to them
- Actively campaigned for voter approval to continue the IV Recreation and Park District (RPD) tax to manage 24 community parks in IV
- Hold monthly meetings with representatives of the CSD and RPD to discuss shared matters of interest
- Library services (Goleta Library has Board of Supervisors mandate to improve library programs in IV and State has allocated one-time funding of $100K to do so)
- See It, Click It notification of graffiti, trash, or damaged public property
- Contracts to manage Community Center and County Parks and in IV
IV Beautification and Improvements—Making the community more attractive, convenient, and welcoming with improved street lighting, sidewalks, parks & coastal access
- Completed Pardall roadway and aesthetic enhancements
- Upgraded and increased street lighting in partnership with IVCSD and Associated Students (Phase 1 with 30 new lights has occurred and Phase 2 planning underway — SCE assistance needed)
- Engaged in sidewalk construction throughout IV (partnership between UCSB and County)
- Completed new coastal access stairway connecting the bluff to the beach at Camino Pescadero
Community-Based Public Safety—Setting expectation that we all—public safety officials and residents—can work together to keep IV safe
- Established new programs for party registration, restorative justice, and Neighborhood Watch.
- Conduct IV Safe quarterly meetings with representatives of all key County, City College, and UCSB departments, hosted by District Attorney, to focus on issues of concern (sexual assault, drug overdoses, bluff falls)
- Addressing sexual assault through self-defense workshops offered free to IV residents; supported IV CSD to convert part of previous Third District office space to a new Survivors Resource Center to offer 24/7 space for survivors of sexual assault to meet with counselors, as well as efforts to hire a dedicated investigator/educator
IV Residents Experiencing Homelessness—Supporting the CSD partnership with Americorp-United Way to serve homeless veterans, employing some to help with IV beautification efforts; providing housing and supportive services at Pescadero Lofts with another facility in the planning stages
Food & Housing Security for IV Residents—Recognizing that rent in the County has risen 3X and college costs risen eight times faster than the cost of living, the County, UCSB and the CSD are focusing with greater urgency on these issues
- Conducted October forum on college affordability in partnership with AS, UCSB, Congressman Carbajal, and Assemblymember Limon; and held January Resource Fair featuring services available to IV residents
- Sponsoring the Food Bank of Santa Barbara County that supplies food pantries open every weekday; training a large new cohort of UCSB CalFresh eligibility workers
- Spurring the University to build the student and staff housing required by its Long-Range Development Plan with the County; endorsed the IV CSD tenant mediation program; and encouraging creation of Safe Parking program; longer-term, will be resurrecting the Master Plan to address housing, circulation, and sustainability
Bluff & Cliff Safety—Addressing the natural process of bluff erosion that has been accelerated by global warming through storm water management, setback fencing at blufftop County parks, and expansion of County’s longstanding del Playa monitoring program requiring certain properties to submit regular engineering reports and, if indicated, cutback decks and structures to ensure resident safety. (The State Coastal Commission prohibits new sea wall construction due to its expense and down-current impacts.)
IV Community Center—Oversaw completed construction, held opening, and transferred management of the long-awaited Community Center to the IV CSD that is working in partnership with the IV Youth Project and RPD to offer a full range of programs to meet community needs
Cannabis Retail—Successfully championed merit-based rather than lottery system for awarding retail licenses so “community benefit” will serve as the primary selection criterion; will soon conduct community meeting to determine highest priority community needs
Accessibility & Availability—Hold monthly office hours and meetings with the IV CSD, IV RPD, IV Network, and IV Foot Patrol; meet quarterly with IV Safe and the Chancellor; meet as needed with AS EVPLA, and always available by appointment; participate in classes and at campus clubs as requested