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Wednesday, December 12 , 2018, 12:17 am | Fair 45º

 
 
 
 

County Supervisors Tighten Music Ordinance in Effort to Tone Down Isla Vista’s Deltopia

After the civil unrest of 2014’s Deltopia street party in Isla Vista, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department has been looking for ways to prevent the large crowds from gathering.

An estimated 20,000 to 25,000 people showed up to last year’s unauthorized event, which escalated into a riot on the night of April 5 with crowds throwing bottles and rocks at law enforcement officers, who responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.

There were 470 arrests and citations over the weekend and 50 medical transports, many from the time of the “civil unrest,” according to the Sheriff’s Department.

The county Board of Supervisors tightened up the rules for unauthorized music festivals Tuesday, deciding to ban it for certain days in April in Isla Vista to specifically target Deltopia. Event organizers brought in professional DJs and bands in past years that have drawn crowds, some that got unruly, according to county leaders.

An outdoor festival is defined in the ordinance as providing music by paid, professional or amateur performers or pre-recorded means, and the event is held at any place other than a permanent building or permanent installation that was constructed for the purpose of conducting those activities, to which the public is invited, admitted or is open to view. The prohibition lasts from 6 p.m. on the specific days to 7 a.m. the day after. 

Deltopia is scheduled for the first weekend in April this year, which is also Easter Sunday weekend, according to social media events.

Supervisor Doreen Farr, whose district includes Isla Vista, said the Sheriff’s Department wants this as an additional enforcement tool. With this modified ordinance, event promoters and organizers can be cited even if they’re not in Isla Vista during Deltopia, she noted.

Violating the ordinance will be an infraction, which is handled like a traffic ticket, according to county counsel. People organizing, hosting and attending an unauthorized music festival can get fined up to $500, the ordinance states.

Specifically, supervisors agreed to add April 3-5 and April 10-12 to the ordinance, which already has prohibitions for Halloween in Isla Vista from Oct. 26-Nov.4.

Noozhawk news editor Giana Magnoli 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.

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