I was born thirty years ago, back in 2016, at a time when grass- roots petitioners stood out in front of grocery stores collecting signatures for a law that saved all this farmland and open space you now see in Ventura County.
Our parents and grandparents kept the bulldozers from paving it all over. Their efforts are one of the reasons Ventura County is continually rated the most desirable place to live in the nation.
City dwellers stream in to our county to hike in natural open space and tour our productive country farms. These lands offer a peaceful and inspiring break from the endless parking lots, buildings and roads that cover Southern California.
I’m very familiar with the grassroots effort that saved our county from urban sprawl because my grandparents helped in the first SOAR signature drive in 1998 and the second one in 2016.
Now I’m following in their footsteps by working to renew SOAR before it expires in 2050. Many of us are collecting signatures and gearing up to wage a major campaign against a strong and entrenched development industry.
Fortunately, we have help from an endowment that thoughtful SOAR supporters set up for us two decades ago, to ensure SOAR passes again. My generation is also committed to seeing that after we pass SOAR this time, we too pass on the resources necessary for the next generation to also renew SOAR.
Ensuring that SOAR continues is a big responsibility and one of the most important things we can do. We take that responsibility seriously. We do so because of our appreciation for these lands that bond us in this undertaking to keep SOAR in place and continue the legacy.