Roses to the Santa Barbara County Public Works Department which worked for more than a month to reopen Union Valley Parkway into Orcutt after a sinkhole developed during the Jan. 9 storm. The collapse of part of the roadway and sidewalk as well as a drainage basin sent stormwater rushing into the Hibiscus Court cul-de-dac and nearby Parkland Drive where more than a dozen homes were damaged or destroyed.
Now the county is planning a comprehensive review of Santa Maria Valley’s drainage system as well as drainage in the Santa Ynez and Lompoc valleys and a regional storm drain in Los Alamos. The Public Works Department is also developing a plan for annual checks.
We promise welcome boutonnières to Santa Barbara County 3rd District residents who volunteer to represent the district on any of five citizen advisory boards and commissions seeking members. Following the January 2022 redistricting, the 3rd Supervisorial District now includes the Santa Ynez Valley, Lompoc, the Gaviota Coast, the western two-thirds of Goleta and a large swath of Los Padres National Forest.
3rd District Supervisor Joan Hartman is asking residents who live in the district to consider filling vacancies on the Air Pollution Control District Community Advisory Council, Behavioral Wellness Commission, Central County Board of Architecture Review, Fish & Wildlife Commission, and Historic Landmarks Advisory Commission.
A hefty bouquet of gold, blue, burgundy, red, and yellow roses wrapped in black ribbon to Lompoc native Julian Araujo, who has earned himself a home in Spain as the newest member of FC Barcelona. The right-back soccer star, who has spent his entire professional career with LA Galaxy, signed a permanent deal with the Spanish super club last week.
Araujo, now 21, spent two years at Lompoc High School before attending Barcelona’s youth academy in Arizona. He then signed a pro deal with the Galaxy, debuting for their second-division team. He was quickly called up to Major League Soccer squad where he made back-to-back MLS All-Star teams in 2021 and 2022.
While it wasn’t the season ender they’d hoped for, we still offer navy and white nosegays wrapped in gray ribbon to each member of the No. 1-seed Orcutt Academy Girls’ Basketball Team. After a 25-5 season, the Warriors fell to No. 4 Tehachapi in this week’s semifinals of the CIF Central Section Division Playoffs. The Warriors (26-1) outscored the Spartans in a 65-61 nail-biter that saw three Warriors in double figures: Laura LaMonte (22 points, 6 rebounds); Elizabeth Johnson with a double-double (21 points, 16 rebounds); and Riley Walden (18 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 steals).
While athletes take the roses this week, we offer a basket of trimmers, loopers and sharpened chains to the City of Santa Maria for its effort to expand the urban forest. The Department of Recreation and Parks will plant a tree in front of residences and staff will provide regular pruning. Residents interested in having a tree planted in the easement at their home may contact the Recreation and Parks Department at 805-925-0951 ext. 2260.
The effort follows on the city’s winter planting program which included the addition of 250 trees to city parks and 50 along sidewalks and street medians. The department will plant 235 15-gallon street trees as part of the Cal Fire Urban and Community Forestry Grant and 125 large street trees using the annual street tree budget.