Off-Leash Public Affairs - September 25, 2010
The Daily Nexus - September 16, 2010
Incumbents Face Fresh Challenger
By Garik Hauer
Published on September 16, 2010
The previously uncontested race for three Goleta City Council seats in this
November’s election started to heat up on Monday after a fourth candidate
announced her intention to run for one of the seats.
Paula Perotte, a former local Parent-Teacher Association President, will
run against incumbent councilmen Roger Aceves and Michael Bennett. She
will also challenge Reyne Stapelmann, another newcomer who
announced her candidacy in August.
The entrance of a fourth candidate marks the beginning of competition
in a race that originally saw only two candidates planning to run for
the three open seats.
According to Perotte, her decision to run for a seat on the council was
based on concerns about a lack of contenders in the democractic process.
"I kept watching this particular election and did not see anyone step up,"
Perotte said. "It was disturbing to see no one step up and I felt someone
needed to step in so it could be an actual election."
Perotte has already received multiple campaign endorsements, including
approval from 2nd District Supervisor Janet Wolf and Goleta City Council
members Ed Easton and Margaret Connell.
Councilmember Connell said Perotte’s previous background with child
advocacy groups sets her apart from the other candidates.
"She is somebody who has not been deeply involved in city issues but she
has been heavily involved in community issues," Connell said. "One of the
issues she has been very strong in is traffic safety and a safe route near schools."
Mayor Eric Onnen, whose decision to step down from the council this year created
the third vacancy, said other issues will also occupy the council. Onnen said
another key issue will be a controversial debate over urban development on
Bishop Ranch that will carry over from the current council and remain one
of the more difficult hurdles for the new council members to address.
"I think one of the key issues will always be land use, specifically the conversion
of agricultural land parcels into commercial land usage," Onnen said. "It's going
to come forward to the council in the near future, one of the prime examples is
that of Bishop Ranch."
Perotte said she chose to voice her stance on these issues during her
campaign kick-off Monday.
"The questions most frequently asked were, 'What do you think about
Bishop Ranch and the general plan?'" Perotte said. "For me, the priorities
are always going to be that we respect the environment and our quality of
life. We need to respect our agricultural resources."
Santa Barbara Independent - September 14, 2010
Paula Perotte and her supporters
Paula Perotte Kicks Off Campaign
With 25 Supporters Behind Her, the Former PTA President Pledges
to Win Seat on Goleta City Council
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
By Matt Kettmann
Goleta city council candidate Paula Perotte got her first
taste of made-for-media showcases on Monday, as more than
25 supporters including two councilmembers and a county
supervisor stood behind the former PTA president as she
"officially kicked off" her campaign before the watchful
eyes of two reporters, two photographers, and one
videocamera-toting citizen journalist.
Held outside of the Goleta Valley Community Center, where
the successful campaigns for councilmember Ed Easton and
former councilmember Jonny Wallis have begun over the years,
the brief event came one month after Perotte’s candidacy
was announced in the media. (The Independent broke that
and then followed up with a more detailed account
) As such, the noontime press conference
seemed more designed to remind Goleta voters that there
is indeed a city council election this November.
(Read about why Goleta might be more apolitical than its neighboring jurisdictions
But it also served to strategically lift Perotte’s campaign
above that of Reyne Stapelmann, a real estate agent who
announced her candidacy a week before Perotte. Both women
are in the running with councilmembers Roger Aceves and
Michael Bennett for the three open Goleta City Hall seats;
conventional political wisdom predicts that due to fundraising
headstarts, name recognition, and lack of council controversy
Aceves and Bennett will likely retain their seats, leaving
the race for the third to be a showdown between Perotte and Stapelmann.
On Monday, Perotte, a 27-year Goleta resident, stuck to
her message of keeping Goleta the great place it already
is and showed that she has the hefty support of the progressive
Democratic machine to do so. Among other people lining up behind
Perotte were Supervisor Janet Wolf and Goleta councilmembers
Margaret Connell and Ed Easton, and she’s also already bagged the
additional endorsements of Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider,
former mayor Marty Blum, former supervisors Susan Rose and Gail
Marshall, the Democratic Party of S.B., the Democratic Women of
S.B. County, the S.B. Women’s Political Committee, and the Los
Padres Sierra Club.
Promising to run a "very energetic grassroots campaign" that will
"do whatever it takes to get the message out," Perotte who works
for the Community Action Commission as an advocate for special
needs children and their parents said, "I’m confident we can meet
our challenges the old-fashioned way, by working together." When
asked afterward about the proposed Bishop Ranch development (read
by government watchdog/citizen journalist David Pritchett, Perotte
said that she will stick with the city’s general plan that calls
for the property to remain as agriculturally zoned.
As the crowd moved to the center’s front steps for a group shot,
Goleta Mayor Eric Onnen whose decision not to run sparked the
campaigns of Perotte and Stapelmann, which The Independent first reported
was spotted watching the festivities. Explaining that he had endorsed
Stapelmann and Bennett, Onnen said that he was there to see what
Perotte was all about, noting that he had a third endorsement to
give if so desired. When asked if Aceves had sought Onnen’s
endorsement, Onnen answered, "No, no he has not." He did not share any
further thoughts about Perotte, so it remains to be seen whether the
endorsement of Onnen who is considered to be a more pro-business
politician than the more environmentally minded progressives will
come Perotte’s way.
Santa Barbara News Press - September 14, 2010
Paula Perotte kicks off Goleta council campaign
MORGAN HOOVER, NEWS-PRESS STAFF WRITER
A well-endorsed candidate for Goleta City Council kicked off her campaign Monday
afternoon in an address to supporters and media at the Goleta Valley Community Center.
Paula Perotte, who has lived in Goleta with her husband Peter for 27 years, will
vie for one of three open spots on the council, along with incumbents Michael
Bennett and Roger Aceves and newcomer Reyne Staplemann.
Having received endorsements from the likes of Assemblyman Pedro Nava, 1st
District Supervisor Salud Carbajal, 3rd District Supervisor Doreen Farr, Santa
Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider and Santa Barbara City Council members Das Williams
and Grant House, she was introduced Monday by Goleta Councilman Ed Easton.
"I hope we're starting a tradition," said Mr. Easton, referring to his own campaign
kickoff, which was held at the center, as was former Councilwoman Jonny Wallis' kickoff.
Mr. Easton said Mrs. Perotte is "a clear winner."
"She knows Goleta, and it certainly is home to her and her family," he said. "She
knows small business, she knows the schools, she even knows the Sheriff's Department."
Mrs. Perotte told those in attendance that what she loves about Goleta includes "the
public school systems, the recreation opportunities and that small-town feel where
neighbors know each other, and you get a real sense of community."
She is known for having spent 15 years at different levels of the PTA, and she also
works with the Community Action Commission.
Her work with the commission, she said, allows her to "advocate for families with
"I'm convinced that people like me need to step up to local government, and that's
why I'm running," she said, calling Goleta a "wondrous place."
"Goleta is the gateway to our university, it is the gateway to our airport and it
is the gateway to the beautiful Gaviota coast," she said. "We want to make sure that
we make Goleta a better place for our children."
Mrs. Perotte said she is committed to being responsive to residents' needs and that
the way for the city to address challenges is to work with residents and organizations.
"There is one very effective way to get things done: by working together," she said.
"I'm absolutely sure that we can win, and we can continue to move Goleta forward together."
Present at her event Monday were Mayor Eric Onnen, Councilwoman Margaret Connell
and 2nd District Supervisor Janet Wolf.
Last month, Mrs. Perotte answered a few key questions posed by the News-Press.
She said that she does not support changing the General Plan to accommodate
development on Bishop Ranch.
She also said she is "concerned about the potential impacts on western Goleta residents,
such as rate changes or changes in service" from the proposed detachment from the
Goleta West Sanitary District."
An avenue to support for improving the budget climate in Goleta, said Mrs. Perotte,
would be to "explore changing the Revenue Neutrality Agreement Goleta has with Santa
A long-standing issue in Goleta that Mrs. Perotte addressed is safe routes to schools.
"In addition to assuring sufficient policing services," she said, "this includes providing
safer streets and sidewalks for pedestrians, more alternative transportation and also
cleaner air and water."
"And in this time of tight budgets," she continued, "I want to make sure we make sound
fiscal decisions so that Goleta can continue to provide vital services to this wonderful
KCSB Radio Interview - September 13, 2010