A longtime Santa Barbara Fiesta tradition was almost derailed over a tax issue.
The issue is over a longtime Fiesta tradition, called cascarones. Cascarones are hollowed out eggs filled with confetti. You crack them over the head of a family member or friend as part of the celebration.
The cascarones have become a popular way for low income families to make extra money during Fiesta, with people selling them on the streets of Santa Barbara.
But Wednesday, some state tax officials checking on official fiesta vendors saw people selling the confetti-filled eggs. They gave them warnings, but said if they didn’t file proper paperwork they would be subject to a crackdown on Thursday.
Santa Barbara Police intervened, telling the agents many of the vendors were low income residents without the means of going through the process on short notice. They took the state agents to City Hall, to talk with city officials about the issue.
An agreement was worked out that will allow the street vendors to sell cascarones this Fiesta without fear of penalties. The state agents will pass out literature telling the vendors how to get properly permitted for next year.