On Nov. 6, one third of Goleta Valley’s residents will vote on Measure H. If you live in West Goleta, you might be among them. For the fourth time in 14 years, a group has put a cityhood measure on the ballot. That means that Goleta, an unincorporated area of Santa Barbara County, is once again trying to make itself into a city.

I have three problems with this proposal: the boundaries, the money and the purpose.

Measure H, GoletaNOW’s proposal, is the smallest yet. Imagine: a city of Goleta … without Goleta Beach. A city of Goleta … that doesn’t even include Patterson Road north of 101. A city of Goleta … including barely three miles of coast (which includes an oil processing facility and a private resort).

The inclusion of I.V. and the university is of course controversial. Many Goletans don’t want students voting for “crazy” things (like a just cause for eviction from slums, perhaps) and, well, many Isla Vistans don’t want them – the Goletans – voting for crazy things (like Measure H and state water).

Now to the money. It just isn’t there. The proposed budget uses numbers from 1999. Remember low energy costs, a booming tech economy and a huge government surplus? Yup, those are the numbers they’re still using for a budget. The first year that the city is in the black, the budget is counting on one million dollars in bed tax from the Page Hotel, which hasn’t even finished the planning process, much less started construction.

But now to the purpose. Why is GoletaNOW so insistent on cityhood? Do they want to protect the environment? They haven’t included much of it. Almost no coast and almost no foothills would be within the city’s jurisdiction. Do they want to cut down on special districts and consolidate services? Nope – no other agencies would be eliminated and no new services are planned or promoted. Do they want to tackle the problematic lack of affordable housing? Certainly not. The push for this city grew strong out of the fight against the El Encanto Heights project and the city’s proponents want to stop the county from putting affordable housing (that is required by law) in West Goleta.

On Nov. 7 we don’t want to wake up with a whole new city government that provides no new services and will quickly find itself short on money. The boundaries aren’t right, the numbers aren’t either, and neither is the time. Vote NO on Measure H on Nov. 6.

Daniel Huber is a UCSB graduate and member of the Citizens Coalition Against Measure H.