Sheriff Jim Anderson snagged some high-profile endorsements for his re-election bid last week, winning kind words from Santa Barbara Mayor Marty Blum and former City Councilmember Babatunde Folayemi. Also endorsing Anderson at last Wednes-day’s courthouse extravaganza – which featured an impromptu performance of “God Bless America” by former actress Jane Russell (pictured) – were Santa Barbara City Councilmember Roger Horton, Ventura County Sheriff Bob Brooks, and San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Patrick Hedges. Lompoc Police Chief Bill Brown – Anderson’s opponent – announced last week that he’d been endorsed by SEIU Local 620, which represents non-sworn employees of the Sheriff’s Department.

Developers Bill Levy and Roy Millender and their attorney were socked with a $22,000 court-ordered sanction for filing a frivolous lawsuit to block enforcement of a legal agreement. The agreement – which Levy struck himself – required him to repay the $170,000 that former La Cumbre Country Club golf pro Sam Randolph lent him in 1997. The Court of Appeal concluded Levy’s lawsuit had no legal merit. The court also rejected Levy’s claims that the agreement was usurious and that Randolph verbally agreed to an extension so Levy could secure funding for his time-share condo project.

Santa Barbara Assemblymember Pedro Nava called “unacceptable” the findings of a state audit concluding that California’s emergency preparedness is being hampered by bureaucratic infighting and red tape. The audit found that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has let tens of millions of dollars in federal emergency preparedness funding go unspent. “California is not prepared to respond to disasters and acts of terrorism, especially those that are catastrophic in nature,” Nava said.

Santa Barbara volleyball players Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser did the city proud last weekend by winning their eighth AVP tournament of the year, the most tourneys won by a single team since 1997. Rogers and Dalhausser beat Santa Barbaran Dax Holdren and his partner Sean Scott at the Best of the Beach Tournament in Lake Tahoe.

Santa Barbara News-Press reporter Leah Etling resigned last Friday, bringing the number of reporters, editors, and photographers who have quit Santa Barbara’s embattled daily to 23. Etling – who covered news and outdoor endurance events – is the daughter of former Santa Ynez columnist William Etling, who was terminated three weeks ago. Leah Etling was supportive of Teamster efforts to unionize the newsroom. Her departure adds new urgency to the question dogging union organizers: whether enough union sympathizers will remain in the newsroom for the union election scheduled for September 27.

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