October 5, 2022
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Santa Barbara chamber opposes anti-oil effort Measure P


Proponents of Santa Barbara County’s Measure P, an anti-fracking measure that could also shut down conventional oil and gas production, suffered a setback on Aug. 27 when the largest South Coast chamber of commerce said it opposed the November ballot initiative.

The Santa Barbara Region Chamber of Commerce said that its board voted to “urge its members to vote ‘no’ on Measure P.”

The group said the measure “is written in a way that its likely to mislead voters.” In addition, it said, the measure would prohibit operations that already are legal in the county and have been used for decades.

If passed, the area economy could suffer $291 million in economic losses, the chamber warned, including lost wages and indirect costs. And Santa Barbara County could be forced to reduce public services, the chamber said, if the measure is passed and county taxes go down.

Santa Barbara County cold also face lawsuits, legal costs and liability claims of more than $100 million, the chamber said, if the measure passes and is deemed to be a “taking” by the California courts.
Measure P faces considerable opposition in North Santa Barbara County, where most onshore oil and gas operations are located.

An effort by State Sen. Hannah Beth Jackson to ban onshore to offshore drilling from Vandenberg Air Force Base to tap the Tranquillon Ridge field was stymied in the state senate on Aug. 26, when a bill she sponsored failed to gather enough votes for passage.


  1. Walt Taylor says:

    What Measure P Actually Says
    There has been a lot of statements in the press recently saying that measure P will shut down all local oil production. Many voters have not read Measure P so I am going to quote section 5.c of Measure P: 
       “ The provisions of this Initiative shall not be applicable to any person or entity that has obtained, as of the Effective Date of this initiative, a vested right, pursuant to State law, to conduct a High Intensity Petroleum Operation.”  That means existing operations are not affected by measure P.  Read the text yourself on the VoteYesOnP.org website, read section 5 and see for yourself if existing operations are exempt.
    Why do we see these deceptive statements? Because big money interests want to scare us about losing jobs and tax revenue. Opponents of Measure P know they can’t argue the water use, pollution, or the climate effects. We don’t want the risks of thousands of new wells, please take a stand, and consider that oil is about 1% of our economy and Measure P won’t change that.
    Santa Barbara County Council Mike Ghizzoni was asked about this. He cited the landmark California Supreme Court case, Avco Community Developers vs. South Coast Regional Commission. He applied the Avco standard to the Measure P and concluded current production will be allowed to continue.
    Statements to the contrary involve twisting words and taking statements out of context by those paid to promote the agenda of the oil and gas industry.

  2. John says:

    Everyone should just google the text of measure P and read section 5 it will be very clear that it does not shut down existing production, quite the opposite. These statements sir. Lee scare tactics to deceive the voters on behalf of the oil and gas industry

    • Andrew says:

      Section 5 does allow the currently permitted oil extraction methods to remain in use, but what it doesn’t take into account is that oil companies have to reapply for new permits every 3 years to keep within changing environmental regulations. Section 5 does not state any right for those applications to be permitted again. In fact, it guarentees that they will not be approved. That’s why it’s deceptive, because so few people know how oil extraction really works. Measure P guarentees shut down of nearly all oil companies in Santa Barbara county within 5 years , and with that shut down the funding to schools, fire departments, and thousands of local businesses go down the drain.

      Measure P in its current form is deceptive and costly. Also consider this: there is no fracking in Santa Barbara county. Fact. If you are worried about the environment, wouldn’t you prefer to have your oil come from the strictest place in environmental regulations? Producing in Santa Barbara county means we use less oil from places where there are zero regulations. Producing here is the safest and most beneficial way of getting oil.