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Local News

Supervisors Wolf, Carbajal Endorse Measure P

Proponents of the Measure P ballot initiative on Friday gained two big endorsements — from Santa Barbara County First District Supervisor Salud Carbajal and Second District Supervisor Janet Wolf.

As recently as earlier this week, both elected officials decided against making public statements for or against the measure, known formally as “The Healthy Air and Water Initiative to Ban Fracking.”

If approved by voters, Measure P would prohibit fracking, cyclic steam injection and other high-intensity petroleum operations in the county’s unincorporated areas.

The Santa Barbara County Water Guardians, which created the initiative, announced the endorsements Friday, making the tally two supervisors for Measure P, two against.

At the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday, the North County’s Fourth District Supervisor Peter Adam and Fifth District Supervisor Steve Lavagnino both staunchly opposed Measure P as a great risk to county taxpayers and to property owner rights.

Adam and Lavagnino cast dissenting votes in a 3-2 move to approve exemption ordinances that will take effect if voters pass Measure P Nov. 4.

Third District Supervisor Doreen Farr has yet to publicly endorse either side.

In the announcement, Wolf and Carbajal said Measure P would protect the county’s water, air and residents’ health, along with reducing greenhouse-gas emissions contributing to global warming.

Salud Carbajal

“After carefully considering the issue, I have decided to support Measure P because I believe it is important for our county to continue to take leadership in the transition to alternative forms of energy and in addressing the serious issue of global climate change,” Carbajal said in a statement.

“As has been clarified by the implementing ordinances enacted by our Board of Supervisors this past Tuesday, Measure P would allow existing oil operations and all new conventional oil production to continue while mitigating the air-quality impacts and public-health risks associated with new high-intensity oil development.” 

Wolf expressed similar sentiment in a statement, saying she hoped to uphold already adopted county policies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and use of fossil fuels.

“My endorsement of Measure P is based upon my commitment to those policies  — including the Climate Action Strategy Guiding Principles, adopted in 2009, with a goal of ‘reducing pollution to improve public health’ and ‘reducing countywide greenhouse gas emissions.’”

Janet Wolf

Both Wolf and Carbajal called their North County colleagues irresponsible this week for voting against enacting exemption ordinances.

At that time, Carbajal said he hadn’t yet formed an opinion on Measure P — if he would at all.

The supervisors join a long list of other Measure P proponents, which can be viewed here.

In other endorsement news this week, the Santa Barbara County Democratic Party has flipped its endorsement on Measure S, a $288 million bond initiative to finance construction projects on Santa Barbara City College’s three campuses.

The organization is now telling constituents to vote yes on the ballot measure.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff 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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