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County 7-9


Third District Supervisor Doreen Farr’s request for attorney fees stemming from an election contest from former opponent Steve Pappas was denied by Judge William McLafferty on 7/6. Though Pappas didn’t prove a single vote he challenged was illegitimate, the judge said there was no precedent for Farr getting her attorneys paid for defending her election victory.

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Al Rodriguez, assistant director for Mental Health Services in the beleagured Alcohol, Drug, and Mental Health Services (ADMHS) department, has “left his position,” according to a letter from ADMHS director Ann Detrick to employees and associated community members. She gives no indication why Rodriguez-who was director of the alcohol and drug side of ADMHS previously-left. Rodriguez didn’t return phone calls.

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The Board of Supervisors on 7/7 requested more frequent updates from the financially floundering ADMHS in response to the Civil Grand Jury’s report on the department. With a laundry list of concerns including changes in contracts and financial liabilities, the board expressed that it was important to “make sure past issues are resolved so that the department can move forward in a better direction.”

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Ventura County firefighters Brian Bulger, Robert Lopez, and Ron Topolinski were honored by the Santa Barbara Board of Supervisors for “extraordinary service” and “exemplary signs of bravery and heroism” while defending the homes of Santa Barbara residents on 5/6 in the Jesusita Fire. The three men sustained burns when the fire overtook them in their fight.

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The Board of Supervisors voted to establish two no parking zones on both sides Foothill Road in Mission Canyon. Additionally, the board voted to schedule a meeting with Caltrans, fire and police representatives, the Mission Canyon Association, the California Highway Patrol, and citizens in the area who voiced concerns about the safety of the area and potential effects of the restricted parking.

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Glenn Russell, currently the program manager of San Diego County’s planning department, has been named Santa Barbara County’s new Planning & Development department director. Russell replaces John Baker, who has been the director of the department on a contract basis since 2006. He will make $160,000 annually when he takes over in September.

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