3 Amigos: Diablo Canyon, County vs. UCSB, SBUSD's Phone Snatch, New SBPD Chief, Joyce Throws Down
Nick Welsh and Josh Molina, the two hardest workin' men in show business, joined the genial host on Friday for a new edition of Newsmakers TV, addressing key questions about the week's most consequential local news stories for Inquiring Minds Who Want to Know:
What does it say about the erstwhile hardline opposition of enviros to what George W. Bush calls "nucular" that the Democrat-dominated Legislature overwhelmingly approved $1.7 billion to finance Governor Gavin's project to underwrite PG&E's continued operation of the Diablo Canyon Power Plant?
Is Chancellor Henry Yang really putting all his chips on the possibility that the much-derided "Dormzilla" will ever be built, as the County of Santa Barbara joins the City of Goleta in suing the university for its failure to provide thousands of long-promised housing units for its expanding population of students (not to mention faculty and staff)?
What got into Josh, normally the grumpiest of journalists when it comes to the administration of the Santa Barbara Unified School District, now expansively extolling ShaKenya Edison, the brand-new assistant superintendent for student services, for her handling of the new "Off and Away" classroom ban on cell phones, smart watches and headphones?
How committed to their agenda will criminal justice reformers find just-hired Santa Barbara Police Department Chief Kelly Ann Gordon, who is inheriting a batch of traditional law enforcement challenges, including a major spike in murders and the growing criminal use of untraceable "ghost guns"?
How successful will council member Kristen Sneddon and her slow-growth allies be in standing athwart history and yelling "Stop!" as the Santa Barbara Airport pursues its ambitious and aggressive expansion plan?
What's the over-under betting line on how many trees finally will be cut down to accommodate build-out of the Modoc Road bike lane, as the county public works department stages a tactical retreat in the face of unexpected, fierce and effectively organized opposition to its plan?
How long must the three-peat champion Santa Barbara Foresters, a community treasure, wait for Pershing Park to be spiffed up into an appropriately decent ballpark befitting their special brand of sustained sporting excellence?
How do advocates of building housing for thousands of new city residents square the circle of doing so amid a 1,000 year drought, at a time of increasing demands for residential conservation of water?
How much political payback was behind the county's effort to stiff the District Attorney's office on salary because of outgoing DA Joyce Dudley's widely-reported, candid public comments critical of what she termed the "woke" criminal justice reform efforts of the Board of Supervisors, at the expense of local government's fundamental responsibility for public safety? Looking at you, Das and Gregg.
Cartoon of the Week
Images: Three Amigos (Minions via LinkedIn); Cartoon by David Sipress for The New Yorker.