Wednesday, June 20 , 2018, 12:47 am | Fair 61º

 
 
 
 

Local News

Advice

Santa Barbara City Council Unanimously Supports News-Rack Ordinance

Publishers will have to pay $13 annual fee and eventually paint racks

An ordinance requiring news rack owners to by the city an annual fee was unanimously approved Tuesday by the Santa Barbara City Council.
An ordinance requiring news rack owners to by the city an annual fee was unanimously approved Tuesday by the Santa Barbara City Council. (Joshua Molina / Noozhawk photo)

The Santa Barbara City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to support a news rack ordinance that requires rack owners to pay new annual fees.

The rack owners will have to pay $13 a year to have the rack. The city also owns racks and a publication will have to pay $18 to place their product inside.

The vote was 6-0, with Harwood White absent. 

All new racks — for a publication looking to start distribution in the area — would cost $236.

As part of the new ordinance, the city also will require the rack owners to provide regular maintenance of the racks and paint them a city-approved shade of dark green that would be uniform throughout the city. 

The city worked with local publications to find common ground on the ordinance.

The city took on the issue from an aesthetic point of view; some of the racks are old, tattered, discolored and sullied from years of neglect.

The city wants to upgrade the racks to help improve the look and image of the city.

Publishers, however, expressed concerns about the costs and the effect new fees could have on the distribution of print news and advertising. 

Councilman Frank Hotchkiss said the city had examined the issue thoroughly, "every which way from Sunday."

"I am glad that the news people are on board," Hotchkiss said. "There's some freedom of the press (concerns) here too."

Councilman Randy Rowse also expressed concerns about unfairly burdening media.

"I don't want to endanger a particular sector of the industry, especially the print industry," Rowse said. 

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Enter your email
Select your membership level
×

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >