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Ariel Calonne 

Paul Wellman

Ariel Calonne 


Santa Barbara Names New City Attorney


The phrase most used by city councilmembers to describe Ariel Calonne ​— ​named last week as City Hall’s new legal top gun ​— ​is “crazy smart,” followed closely by “quirky.” But mostly, councilmembers have been struck by the breadth of Calonne’s experience working for cities similar to Santa Barbara. Since 2007, Calonne — ​who introduced himself to the public at this Tuesday’s council meeting ​— ​has worked as city attorney for Ventura, where Santa Barbara headhunters lured him away. “You could say they roped me in,” he noted, shortly after commenting, “This isn’t my first rodeo.” Before Ventura, Calonne worked as city attorney for Palo Alto and Boulder, Colorado. He is expected to start work 3/17, just three weeks before what promises to be an intense courtroom battle over the city’s proposed gang injunction.

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