Oceano votes against freedom of speech

December 12, 2019

Cynthia Replogle


In an attempt to control a director’s speech, the Oceano Community Services District Board voted 3-2 on Wednesday to bar Director Cynthia Replogle from any committee, liaison or subject matter assignments for one year. [Cal Coast Times]

The board originally attempted to muzzle Replogle in early 2019, after she spoke as a member of the public at a Pismo Beach City Council meeting. Because of environmental concerns, Replogle opposed plans to build a regional recycling water project in Oceano, which the majority of the Oceano board supported.

At that time, outraged members of the public accused the board of attempting to keep them in the dark by restricting opposing views, and the board majority dropped plans to punish Replogle.

At Wednesday’s poorly attended meeting, Director Karen White made a motion to bar Replogle from representing the board in any manner, noting that Replogle’s opposing views were confusing to Oceano residents.

“I get really tired of the destructive actions she takes in public,” White said.

Director Allene Villa disagreed, noting that Replogle explains that she is not speaking on behalf of the board when she voices a non-board majority opinion.

“It is a little bit obscene for a public body to say that everybody has to fall in line and agree with us when we make a decision,” Replogle said.

Even though Jeff Minnery, Oceano’s legal counsel, said Replogle had a legal right to voice her opinions, White and Director Shirley Gibson disagreed.

Shirley Gibson

“Her behavior undermines our board and is destructive to our community,” Gibson said. “We do expect that after a vote, if you disagree with it, you should be mute.”

Replogle then questioned Gibson’s understanding of freedom of speech.

“That is not what the First Amendment is all about,” Replogle said. “Maybe you should read the Constitution.”

Directors White, Gibson and Linda Austin then voted to bar Replogle from committee assignments for one year. Villa and Replogle dissented.


I have watched the tape of this meeting and can see from the interaction that Gibson and White came to the table with an agenda — White made the motion to silence Replogle and listed her reasons. Gibson seconded and listed hers. Both read from prewritten notes. The funny thing is if they had said nothing and simply blocked her nominations to each committee they would have accomplished the same thing without stepping on the First Amendment and without insulting the Constitution of the United States of America.

Replogle is bright, articulate and speaks her mind. I appreciate those qualities in anyone, but when they threaten the status quo, which she clearly does, the old guard circles the wagons and defends the home front — keeping Oceano depressed and its residents in the dark.

This same majority feared Jim Hill’s transparency and supported a $100,000 investigation. What kind of investigation doesn’t interview the accused? One that’s slanted with the chips already in.

Giv’em hell Cynthia. Keep speaking out. Shine the sunlight on Oceano!


They were very sneaky about it, scheduling it during the holidays when no one would be paying attention.


I’m looking at Gibson; muzzle is a good word


I kind of wish the Air Board research types and dunes shut-down types would divert their research from silica claimed to be in the air, and figure out what DIFFERENT air compound or element in SLO County air poisons brains and gives us such !@#-all STOOPID types elected and appointed to public offices. You can pick your jurisdiction, Oceano CSD, Morro Bay dooming it’s town to Los Osos style citizen sewer expense, marking off a thousand parking and travel spaces for thinly-used bike lane fantasy projects…………..

This vote is indeed junior high school student-council tripe.


This really is incorrect , immature, abusive and very seventh grade . The expectation that dissent is not allowed expression is SO Maoist that I doubt these “light weights” get it . Thanks CCN


Free Speech is a danger to government.

Free Speech makes it hard for leaders to steal, loot, cheat, and force their personal agendas on their subjects.

Free Speech can potentially turn public opinion against leaders, especially if the leaders are corrupt sociopaths…which is nearly always the case.

The Constitution forbids the government from stifling free speech for the above reasons and others…..not that we understand or follow the Constitution anymore.

No, in this brave new progressive world people need to shut up, pay their taxes and do what they’re told. Free Speech is not in keeping with this.

BTW, a free people would literally walk into those meetings and turn the tables over in protest! But we’re not free, or brave, so I strongly advise against such action. Keep your mouth shut and let the leaders do what they want…..that’s your only choice.



It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, rather; it is the size of the fight in the dog.

You are correct that the fight in most dogs has been “curbed.”

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful,committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. ~Margaret Mead


My though is this is just a intimidation attempt by a board, who clearly is acting like a bully, to stop someone who disagrees with their rule. Even in California doubtful any court or judge will back taking away someones first amendment right, at least right now. No surprise Karen White Shirley Gibson are the two trying to push this, they constantly treat anyone who disagrees with them as lower life forms.


Ignoring = Rewarding


Your a little old to join the “Hitler youth” there gibson. If is a person does not agree with the batch, then you should be disallowed to speak, WTF? Bravo central coast, as a leader in all that is great in your perverted minds, another grandiose leap forward into Commiefornia progressiveness.


If this is bad, the President signed an Executive order this week making it illegal to criticize a certain country, labeling your freedom of speech as hate speech, in the most obscure way, to continue corporate military industrial contracts, and potentially withholding academic funding from universities whom do so; this includes firing state and federal workers exercising constitional rights of freedom of speech. Kind of like China, Russia and Nazi Germany. I care not to disclose what country he specified, as it might constitute hate speech and I could loose my rights. Please folks, look into this, as India, China, Brazil and so many other countries hinder freedom of religion and speech and Democracy. USA is soon to be Iran, Hong Kong, China, Russia, Iraq, Egypt.. etc. And look here in Slo Co, politicians creating discord. Give me Democracy, or give me death.


Universities that accept federal funding will now be made allow all speech.