Archive » June 17, 2010
GOLETA COUNCIL MULLS OVER DETECTIVE POSITION
By Alonzo Orozco, Contributing Writer
“Are you going to allow me to lead the meeting?” questioned Goleta Mayor Eric Onnen to fellow council member Roger Aceves during their Tuesday opening session.
Retaining the fourth detective position for Goleta at the Santa Barbara County’s Sheriff Department was of main concern for Aceves, and the most-heated topic of discussion during the latest Goleta City Council at council chambers.
Members of the local sheriff’s department were on hand to see whether one detective position would be eliminated as a measure to cut spending in order to keep the city’s budget in line. One of the sheriffs spoke in front of the council, informing members that it would cost a little over $16,000 to keep the position alive through July, and that he needs to get together with his staff to conduct city contract calculations to determine whether the position is economically viable for the future.
After meeting with his staff, the detective suggested that his crew work with city staff to determine if there should be a fourth officer.
Aceves and the council all seemed to agree that letting the sheriff’s staff conduct their investigation would aid them in making an informed decision concerning the future of the position.
“The public needs to know what the consequences are of us not fulfilling that position,” insisted Aceves. However, the former police officer refused to put the matter aside in fear that Goleta would have to operate with one less detective.
Onnen then stepped forward, suggesting that funds be allocated till July 30 for the position to continue. Absent Councilmember Michael Bennett, due to illness, the council unanimously approved to keep the position through the end of July.
The afternoon opened up with a presentation by council outlining their plans in compliance with Senate Bill 375 (SB375) that calls for the state and municipalities to cut down on their Green House Gas (GHG) emissions. Advanced Planning Manager Anne Wells pointed out that California, by itself, emits 2 per cent of the world’s contribution.
Wells described the city’s approach to cut down on the emissions as that of a three-legged stool.
The first leg would be to reduce emissions from vehicles, which would involve making sure that the state meet the Pavley standard that calls for California to lower their carbon dioxide equivalents to 16.4 million metric tons by the year 2016. The next step would be to reduce the carbon content of fuels to coincide with the low carbon fuel standard, and the final goal would be to reduce the amount of miles traveled by vehicles.
The evening session dealt with the controversial issue of whether Goleta should take a stance on the state of Arizona’s recent immigration law. “From Arizona, we have seen an issue raised that affects us here in Goleta,” explained Councilmember Edward Easton.
Although content that he raised the issue, Easton realized the reluctance of the council to take a stand on the law. “I understand and appreciate that whatever we do, it needs to be relevant to us here,” he added.
And for now, Goleta will stand pat, not taking any stance until possibly the Arizona immigration issue is raised again.