••• Last week, the Independent reported that the city of Santa Barbara would consider a moratorium on new hotels this summer. That evidently got fast-tracked, as Noozhawk now says the matter will be discussed—and voted on—tomorrow: “There currently are 21 hotel development projects—representing nearly 800 hotel rooms—that potentially could be subject to an interim urgency ordinance, according to the city. The proposed ordinance would prohibit many pending applications for new or expanded hotel development from proceeding unless the project application has been deemed complete.” It seems patently wrong to pause projects that have made it through any part of the permit process simply because the city didn’t have its eye on the bigger picture till now. Creating more housing is important, but so is fostering a culture that’s fair to business. (The graphic above is from April’s roundup of hotels in progress; I only knew of 10.)
••• As of a few days ago, “only about 29,400 ballots of 235,212 registered voters in Santa Barbara County have been returned so far—about 12.5% of ballots—according to the County Elections Office.” It’s not too late, of course, and you can vote in person tomorrow. Please pay special attention to the race for county school superintendent. —Noozhawk
••• The recent buyer of a $13 million house in Montecito was Vicky Tsai, “founder of the Asian-inspired skincare brand Tatcha […] acquired by Unilever in 2019 for a reported $500 million.” —Dirt
••• Newsmakers interviewed embattled Santa Barbara Unified School District superintendent Hilda Maldonado.
••• Today, “the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden is opening a 4.5-acre Backcountry ‘unstructured play’ area designed to encourage children to enjoy nature and play outdoors.” —Santa Barbara News-Press
••• “The historic Santa Barbara County Courthouse is having its roof restored, with work set to start June 7. […] The building will remain open, but there will be scaffolding on the side of the building near Anacapa and Figueroa Streets.” —KCLU
••• The new Santa Barbara Police Department headquarters at Santa Barbara and Cota made progress with the Planning Commission, but it “still needs to pass through several stages for approval, including the City Council, back to the Planning Commission for approval of a devlopment plan, and then to the Architectural Board of Review for design review. […] Once approved, construction is expected to take 28 months, including three months for the earthwork phase and 25 months for the construction phase.” —Noozhawk
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