Why does it matter who is the 3rd District County Supervisor? If you have a city council, what’s left for county government to do?
The answer is that the county covers a much broader range of services than city government, including health-care services for children, seniors, and the disabled; services for alcohol, mental health, and drug addiction; and public health programs for epidemic diseases (very timely right now!). It includes the District Attorney’s Office, jail, and probationary services; elections; and tax collection. Most cities contract with the county for police and fire services. County agencies like the Air Pollution Control District (APCD) monitor emissions from oil facilities. The Board of Supervisors oversees land use issues outside cities — including the Gaviota Coast, Goleta Beach, and huge swaths of open space. The county also has jurisdiction over most agricultural areas.
Whoever occupies the 3rd District seat (covering a wide area from Goleta to Guadalupe, including the Santa Ynez Valley) is a crucial voice and vote on all these services. If they are competent and capable, we are well represented. If they promote special interests and aren’t committed to transparent, community-based governance, we are in trouble.
Joan Hartmann has consistently proven herself to be an honest, highly capable representative of and for the 3rd District. We are fortunate to have her overseeing all of these areas. When you vote, on or before March 3, keep that in mind to ensure that those many services continue to meet our needs.