The race for 2nd District Supervisor is on, and candidates Dan Secord, Joe Guzzardi, Janet Wolf, Das Williams and Keith Zandona, are doing their best to rally support in preparation for the June 6 election.
The 2nd District encompasses portions of eastern Goleta and stretches to the western parts of Santa Barbara. The district includes San Miguel, Santa Rosa, and Santa Cruz Islands. The primary issues being addressed by the candidates, who are running for a seat on the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors, are various environmental concerns and housing developments.
Secord, a retired physician and member of the Dean’s Council of the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at UCSB, said he believes the possible construction of high-density housing in the unincorporated land between Goleta and Santa Barbara is the main issue in the 2nd District race.
He said the State of California requires local governments to accommodate population growth by constructing more high-density housing developments, although UCSB is exempt from the requirement because it is state property.
Guzzardi is a former firefighter who currently works for the Santa Barbara County Fire Dept.’s Office of Emergency Services. He said if the county builds high-density housing developments, it will cause the county’s agriculture to disappear and lead to more social problems because of the high number and close proximity of residents.
Wolf, a vocational rehab counselor and UCSB alumnus, said issues like reproductive rights, preserving Goleta Beach and maintaining open space are as important to her as housing. She said she feels that these issues concern the entire county – not just the 2nd District.
A current Santa Barbara City council member, Williams announced his candidacy Jan. 17. He said he will stand by his previous campaign pledges to help clean up the community’s water, reduce traffic and – like the other three candidates – preserve open space.
Williams, who received his Masters in environmental science from UCSB in 2005, said the environment is one of the most important issues to him. Williams said he thinks the current Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors makes decisions that hurt the environment and threaten the quality of life in Santa Barbara and Goleta. He said he believes current 3rd District Supervisor Brooks Firestone favors developers over environmentalists.
Firestone said he would not comment about the 2nd District election, but he said he disagrees with Williams.
“I don’t like the environment being used as a political issue in itself,” Firestone said. “People should look at the outcomes and specific policies, not make inaccurate generalizations for political purposes.”
Secord, who formally announced his candidacy Jan. 10, said the 2nd District currently has no long-term plan or planning committee, and he said he thinks there should be one. He said his 15 years of experience in city planning and finance and eight years working with the Board of Supervisors would improve the 2nd District and Goleta.
Guzzardi, who has worked for Santa Barbara County since 1988, said his experience with the County and 16-year background in city planning makes him the best candidate. He said he has support from groups throughout the county and he believes his popularity in the Goleta Valley is high.
Wolf has 11 years experience on the Goleta School Board. She said she wants to preserve the natural beauty of Santa Barbara and help support agencies like Planned Parenthood to provide more reproductive choices for women and men and better health care for local children.
Wolf said her supporters include current 2nd District Supervisor Susan Rose, former Santa Barbara Mayor Harriet Miller and many other Goleta residents. She formally entered the race in early January.
Williams said his supporters are mostly environmentalists and include Santa Barbara City Council members Roger Horton, Grant House, Mayor Pro Tempore Helene Schneider and current Santa Barbara City Mayor Marty Blum.
“We are convinced that he can bring people together and represent people of the 2nd District very well,” Blum said of Williams.
Zandona, chapter chair of the Santa Barbara Surfrider Foundation, could not be reached for comment as of press time.