Tuesday, June 19 , 2018, 2:44 pm | Fair 68º


Local News

Goleta Council Gives Green Light for New Stop Signs Near Brandon School

Three stops signs will replace yield signs to improve safety for students

Drivers near Brandon School in Goleta soon will have to drive a little more carefully, with three new stop signs expected to pop up at two nearby intersections.

Two signs on corners at the Padova Drive and Salisbury Avenue intersection and one sign on Deerhurst Drive at Padova were approved unanimously Tuesday by the Goleta City Council to enhance traffic control.

City engineer Marti Schultz said the city received a request from Safe Routes to School coordinator Ruth McGolpin to consider replacing the yield signs at Padova/Salisbury with stop signs because of concerns from the school’s parents over the safety of the intersection.

Upon inspection, city staff concluded that it was necessary to replace the yield signs with the stop signs.

“The problem that was occurring was that the drivers were not really yielding,” Schultz said.

The yield signs at the intersection had been in place since the county days of the Goleta Valley, designed to even out the traffic flow of that “unbalanced” intersection. But given the increased traffic since, the city concluded that the yield signs were no longer sufficient.

“It is a hazard,” said a local mother who bikes in that area with her daughter regularly.

Public input Tuesday was generally supportive of the move.

Additionally, in the future, city staff may look to reassess the effectiveness of the stop signs in the four-way intersection, as well as traffic flow, and determine whether there is the need to place stop signs at all four corners.

In light of the recent decision by the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors to have residents vote to ratify the 10 percent transient occupancy tax it imposed in 1990, the Goleta City Council received a report from its legal counsel on the effect the decision may or may not have on the city.

According to City Attorney Tim Giles, the board’s decision to have voters belatedly ratify the tax in the upcoming June election probably doesn’t mean Goleta will have to do the same.

In 1990, the county raised its 8 percent transient occupancy tax by 2 percent, a decision that since has been determined as in need of voter approval, according to Proposition 62 — passed in 1986 and ensuring that no general tax in California may be imposed without ratification by the voters. In 1986, the Goleta Valley was still part of the county and underwent the same increase in the tax.

However, according to Giles, acceptance of the 10 percent tax was a condition of approval required by the Local Agency Formation Commission, the agency that approves the proposals for incorporation. The 2001 vote to incorporate into a city essentially ratified the 10 percent transient occupancy tax for the new city of Goleta, a tax it continues to share with the county.

It may still be possible for someone who has recently stayed at a Goleta hotel or motel to file a legal challenge against the city regarding the 10 percent tax. However, given the relatively stronger position the city has on its tax, for the moment the council leaned against ratifying it in upcoming elections.

Noozhawk staff writer Sonia Fernandez can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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