Save Our Services

I came back to Santa Barbara yesterday, sad after being with my father who passed on, to find my commercial building at 715 Kimball Street damaged, with big letters saying something “controlla” and dents kicked into a steel door. My sadness turned to anger since we had just spent more than $5,000 painting our building. When I called our Police Department, two officers quickly responded and took photos. The damage is more than $1,000 and the building wall will never look the same.

I am still looking at trash across from our building two months after it first appeared there. My neighbor who lives in a granny garage is still parking his big white truck on the city sidewalk, causing the homeless to walk out into the street—homeless whose numbers have increased because the shelter in our neighborhood was given authorization to expand. This adversely affects the success of small businesses in our area, many of whom were forced by high rents to relocate here from downtown.

My father’s death necessitates that I be out of town for the next few weeks. I will not be able to clean the building until after I return. This wall is clearly seen by all those who pass by on the southbound freeway.

My opinion about cutting police officer numbers: It makes more sense to have the City Council and mayor be honorary positions, without pay or benefits, than to cut our services. An across-the-board pay cut to the highest-paid employees makes more sense than cutting services. I have been told by your the cities’ maintenance department that they don’t clean the sidewalk. So why do they have a job, if not to respond to taxpayer requests and to keep its property clean and safe? Services is what city employees are about. — Bob Evans, S.B.

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