Citizens Planning Association, since its founding in 1960, has supported good planning and historic preservation in Santa Barbara. Our mission statement says it well: “We advocate for the best standards of design and natural resource protection in order to maintain a sustainable community.”
The CPA Board of Directors has been studying the wording of the recent state-level proposals that attempt to address the need for more housing in California. The Board finds serious problems with SB 9 and we urge you to reject these measures which we feel will not create the needed affordable housing.
CPA believes Santa Barbara City, a historic charter city, would be ill-advised to support the proposal for many reasons. Located between mountains and the sea, Santa Barbara has been and must be very careful about following its planning guidelines which require review before locating more housing in high fire prone areas. SB 9 ignores these constraints.
SB needs affordable housing, but our AUD program works for that. Again, SB 9 says nothing about affordability.
SB City development policies require environmental review. SB 9 eliminates CEQA review. Without such review, SB City residents could face negative impacts due to possible water shortages during extended future drought periods. Water, sewage, and other infra-structure constraints must be acknowledged if our community is to maintain an important level of sustainability.
CPA urges you to take a strong stand against this proposed state mandate. Please join the dozens of cities throughout California who have publicly opposed these proposals. Our current City’s development policies should be able to guide our local decision-makers while working for affordability and in protecting the sustainable growth we envision for the future of our very special location.
Citizens Planning Association President