After six years on the job for the City of Goleta, Steve Chase announced this week that he is leaving his position as director of planning and environmental services and moving to Stockton, where he will take over as the city's community development director. His last day in Goleta is June 21.
The Northern California city, which sits just east of the Bay Area on the California Delta, is about 10 times the size of Goleta with nearly 300,000 residents. Chase will arrive at a struggling time, as the city — which has been ranked as one of the most miserable, illiterate, and dangerous places to live in the country in recent years — is fighting off bankruptcy and finds itself needing to cover a multi-million dollar budget gap for the fourth straight year.
Chase's successful run in Goleta, which include the completion of the General Plan and fostering the growth and maturation of the city's planning staff, was praised in a release by City Manager Dan Singer, who explained, “Steve has really helped move the City forward in its planning processes and he will be sorely missed. We wish him well in his new position in Stockton.”
City of Goleta officials will consider replacing Chase and perhaps “reshaping” the planning and neighborhood services departments at the June 5 city council meeting.