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    Two Visions of America by Don Jans

    Santa Paula: Goals, Objectives and New Infrastructure Committee With NO Citizens

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    By Sheryl Hamlin

    At the Monday, May 15, 2019 Santa Paula City Council meeting, the council discussed the FY19/20 goals and objectives. These were derived from a study session held on March 22, 2018. At this meeting, a list of tasks was presented. Three speakers spoke in public comments: Connie Tushla spoke of deteriorated streets, Sheryl Hamlin said the list needed to be prioritized and costed, Andy Sobel spoke of incentivizing Economic Development and Beautification.

    The list presented at the May 15, 2019 meeting was essentially the same list without priorities and without costs associated for each item. During discussion, Council Member Crosswhite suggested adding the implementation of the Youth Needs Assessment and the Historic Preservation. James Mason indicated he was working on a new Historic Ordinance. Council Member Crosswhite also said that the list should be prioritized.

    Council Member Sobel suggested adding a goal for a campus on the east side of town for job training. He also said the city needs clarification of “the bridge”, presumably meaning the bridge over the creek at Santa Paula Street. See previous article.

    Council Member Juarez spoke of beautification. He reminded that there are actually eight parks rather than seven. The Fagan Baranca near the cemetery is a park, but is not maintained. He also questioned why the Lemonwood property was still on the list. City Manager Rock said he would delete this line and replace with new committee to be formed regarding infrastructure. See below.

    City Manager Rock said he would attempt to prioritize and return the list to the council.

    Council Member Crosswhite asked if these items would be included in the budget. City Manager Rock said that he would attempt to balance with the highest priority items.

    There was also a discussion about translation services as a goal and included in the budget. City Manager Rock said he would get bids, but it could be expensive to provide at every meeting.

    See list here and note title reflecting previous year: Goals_20192020

    New Standing Committee

    Recall that the Rock Plan to bifurcate the city government brought out many objections. Previous reports are here, here and here. Additionally, a local historian Mitch Store wrote this editorial.

    When the council voted to abandon the Rock Relocation Plan on May 1, 2019 Agenda Item # 5, the idea of a committee comprised of council members and citizens to discuss the vision for the future. Mr. Cotti was to return with an ordinance

    New Ordinance WITHOUT CITIZENS

    The new committee is a ‘Standing Committee’ which differs from an Ad Hoc committee, in that this meeting is public with an agenda and speakers. The two council members chosen were Araiza and Juarez.

    There were no questions asked about citizen involvement. City Manager Rock said this type of organization allowed flexibility and could expand to include all infrastructure topics.

    But how will there be a dialogue with citizens when each is only allowed a three minute time to speak in what can only be call uni-directional?

    If you expected something enlightened like this, then think again.

    To watch the video click here.

    For more information on author click sherylhamlin dot com


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    Alfred Estrella
    Alfred Estrella
    3 years ago

    After having my say at Council meetings and what I’ve seen of what has been going on here in our little town it seems that there are some people that just have their head in the sand and are comfortable keeping it there or we are being played. List are made, Mission Statements are reviewed and committees formed from their own. Checks and balances are totally lop sided.
    I have seen this City go around and around on “saving” Santa Paula, but actions clearly show just the opposite. What BASIC up keep for our Downtown is non-existent. With a budget that is totally off balanced and there is no one to answer for the Baffoon mistakes.
    But dodged one BIG Mistake it seems that City Hall is ready to take up down another Rabbit Hole with West Area-1. And again quick to expand – Quick to let implode. And with NO monies or SERVICES for maintenance going to downtown, so we have unsafe sidewalks, unsafe streets, clogged street drains, a street sweeper that does not sweep, etc. etc. Where do I stop. Dont you think that we would FIX our City first THEN look at improvements? That like putting a new radio in your car when your wheels are putting out sparks because there is no rubber left. We do pay out taxes, right…are we not due the services.
    Well our City has Bald tires….We can expand later, whats the rush?

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