••• “A few of Santa Barbara’s iconic events won’t happen this year either, for the second year in a row. Other big gatherings will be virtual again, while some organizers decided to postpone event dates in hopes of hosting in-person activities.” Postponed till later or next year: Santa Barbara Fair & Expo, the French Festival, the Summer Solstice parade and festival, Santa Maria Elks Rodeo. Online: the Community Environmental Council’s Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival, I Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival. On the fence: Santa Barbara County Fair, Old Spanish Days (a.k.a. Fiesta), Goleta’s California Lemon Festival, Carpinteria’s California Avocado Festival. —Noozhawk
••• “Excavation of a new debris basin along Randall Road [rendering above] and San Ysidro Creek in Montecito will begin in early May [….] The basin is designed to encompass all eight one-acre properties [including seven purchased by the county and one the owner wouldn’t sell], and the work may proceed in two phases [….] Work on the five northernmost properties on Randall Road is expected to be finished in the fall.” —Montecito Journal
••• Noozhawk ran some rumors about the Four Seasons Biltmore, along with excerpts from a press release from attorneys representing over 250 employees seeking separation pay from the hotel chain: “The word on the streets and sands [and blogs] of Montecito is that the hotel is closed through 2025, when the contract between owner Ty Warner and operator the Four Seasons ceases.” And: “Other employees said they believe that Warner wants to convert the Biltmore’s cottages to condominiums.” And: “The employees said Warner might be waiting out the end of the Four Seasons contract to hire a new operator, St. Regis [which they may have read here]. Others have said they heard that he plans to redesign the hotel with a Moroccan or Moorish theme.”
••• “The family of Krys Brandon Ruiz―a 26-year-old transgender man fatally shot by Lompoc police late last month―is calling on the state Attorney General’s office to investigate the incident, arguing Santa Barbara County’s law enforcement system cannot be relied upon to fairly and objectively investigate its own officers.” The official story is certainly suspicious. —Independent
••• “Santa Barbara on Tuesday agreed to spend $1.2 million as part of its continued restoration of Arroyo Burro Open Space. The city’s Arroyo Burro Open Space Restoration and Trail Improvement Project will improve drainage, create formal trail routes and include the installation of a pedestrian bridge over Arroyo Burro Creek in the Arroyo Burro Open Space leading to Las Positas Road across the street from Elings Park. […] Construction is expected to start in May and end by September, with final landscaping completed by November.” —Noozhawk
••• “The City Council will consider an urgency ordinance May 18 to consider ‘hero pay’ for grocery workers. City Attorney Ariel Calonne will draft a proposal that would require grocery store owners to pay employees an additional $5 per hour, on top of their normal hourly wage, for up to 60 days.” A little late…? —Noozhawk
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