Goleta City Council candidate Don Gilman stressed renegotiating the city’s revenue neutrality agreement with Santa Barbara County at a candidates debate Wednesday night at the Goleta Valley Community Center.

“The current financial arrangement with Santa Barbara County is the worst in the state, and we simply must negotiate a more reasonable agreement that is more equitable to Goleta and our residents,” Gilman said. “Our city leaders have good ideas but are shackled by this lopsided agreement. We need to fix this problem. We simply can’t afford to give $8.2 million, or roughly 34 percent of our revenue, every year to Santa Barbara County.”

The revenue neutrality agreement was negotiated and established by the first City Council when Goleta became a city six years ago.

Gilman also said that youth recreation in Goleta needs to be addressed and improved.

“We need to develop more recreational opportunities for our children,” Gilman said. “Today, my family struggles to find recreational activities that our kids will enjoy. And after talking with many other families, I know we are not alone.”

Gilman also said the city’s general plan was flawed and needed to be fixed.

“The housing element of the General Plan has been rejected by the state of California,” Gilman said. “We simply must get this approved so that we have a viable document to help guide our city into the future.

“If elected, I pledge to use my knowledge and expertise to renegotiate the lopsided revenue neutrality agreement, to get our flawed General Plan fixed and approved, and to provide much needed recreational activities for our kids and our families.”

Don Gilman
Goleta City Council candidate