Saturday, January 19, 2013

Encinitas Right to Vote qualifies for ballot

A very impressive effort by a dedicated group of Encinitans. The initiative would require a public vote before neighborhood zoning could be changed (e.g. to put an apartment building in a single-family neighborhood).


Press release

54 comments:

  1. Great job.by voters. This is the way to get stuff done. If council doesn't act, we probably need a initiative to fire Sacramento Gus befor he bankrupts us like he did Sacramento!

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  2. The developers are whincing today! Congradulations to these activists!

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    1. Hooray!

      It's already harder for an individual to remodel, and permits were raised about 50% or more for individuals, lowered for "tract" developments, by 40% when Barrett sued the City of Encinitas, appealed, and won, in 2004. Permitting fees, like pensions, etc., shot up in 2005, I believe?

      I'm very glad Patrick Murphy is gone. Not sure if I trust Gus Vina's ability to hire a Planning Director who understands standard practice by those educated as urban and suburban planners. Murphy was never qualified academically; Murphy was particularly unqualified by his non-objective, biased experience and performance. I hear the new planning director may be a done deal?

      Planning has favored developers over the little guy. The City craves expansion, for more development fees and real estate and sales tax revenue. Operating and capital expenses continually climbs; we, the beleaguered taxpayers must feed the machine, in taxes and increasing fees.

      We paid over $200 in bogus permitting fees to repair an old roof, when no inspection is ever actually performed by the ESGIL. The County Homeowner's Relief Act, to encourage revitalization of neighborhoods recommended re-roofing fees should only be $7! Our City uses its permitting fees as a form of hidden taxes, so I sympathize with the individual homeowner wanting to make repairs or remodel.

      Planning doesn't have time to do its own inspections! We should be operating with a skeleton staff, in Planning, since they sub so much out, all the consultants and contractors. Contracting out more jobs only provides savings, as Vina suggests, if the City's core staff is reduced! We have three people benefiting from every dollar, the staff member, the consultant/contractor, and the pensioner!

      The machine would eat us alive, munching on our quality of life and peace of mind for profit, the carrot dangling on a bully's stick.

      I'm grateful beyond words that the initiative drive was a huge success. If the City really wants to save money, after the overwhelming support shown through those who signed, KNOWING EXACTLY WHAT THEY WERE SIGNING, they could adopt the measure outright. If they want to consider it, have Planning do a "report," so they can objectively consider the advantages or disadvantages of allowing the citizens to vote!

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    2. Patrick Murphy was not the only problem in the Planning Department. The department is populated with people who are less qualified academically and professionally than even he was.

      Do any of the current planners hold degrees in Urban Planning or have graduate degrees in the field that their $100,000 plus pay would suggest? This lack of education has contributed to many, many City problems.

      For example, the Desert Rose appeal will be held on Wednesday night. Although the Planning Commission voted down the whole project on the basis of safety and other issues, the Planning Department is going against the Planning Commission and is recommending that Council uphold an appeal of the applicant!

      Even worse, Gus Vina has said that this project has to go through. Although he has claimed that the City will get sued--just like with the now retracted affordable housing issue, it appears likely that he hopes to collect a single in lieu fee and some sales tax, in a 1 time windfall, while completely degrading a neighborhood and turning the community of Olivenhain against the City.

      As many have said, the actions of the Planning Department in this case are so poor, that they seem to have placed the taxpayer in jeopardy of being sued by both sides, while alienating the community of Olivenhain and making Gus Vina look completely ineffective and incapable.

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  3. Oh wonderful, so if I want to add a 2ns story or room addition to my home, my idiot neighbors get to vote on it. I don't think so. Facism by any other name is still....facism. And you wonder why decent, honest hardworking people are leaving California??? Because the lunatic fringe( gee, all I want to do as add a granny flat so my 85 year old mothe in law can live with us in comfort a bit longer , but nooooo she needs to be forced into a convelescent home where she will be medicated and controlled and killed off for using to much Medicare.) feels the need to control everyone and everything. The leftist deplore the Nazis yet have hijacked their every move and gambit to impose their will....all in the name of tolerance.
    I can't wait to leave this state and hillbilly town. I'm sure you'll humor me, all in the name of tolerance, err I mean control. Fucking nazis fascist!!!! Now if you'll excuse me I'm going surfing at Swami's. oh and btw...locals only. If you don't live here, don't surf here. If you don't surf here don't develop here. No kooks.

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    1. oh well, at least you eventually spelled "fascist" correctly.

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    2. You would know.....

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    3. This proposition will not effect any additions or grannie flats. Its focused on larger rezoning which makes big profits for developers at citizens quality of life expense.

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  4. 8:51
    Dont be silly. I know that Stocks indicated that a vote would be required to remodel his home if this went through. It was not true when he said it or you stating it. If you want to do something on your property that would be against the zoning, there would be a problem.
    You sound angry, irrational and poorly informed.
    I have no idea what got you into this hight wing crazy rant, but you will feel better beating someone up in the ocean if he lives somewhere you don't and wants to enjoy the surf.

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  5. I fear that people signed their names to the petition without fully understanding what it will do. Its supporters point to density-bonus projects as examples of what it will stop. This is not true - the State density bonus law will not be effected by this initiative and it will continue to trump any local law that conflicts. In fact, there is a strong argument that this initiative will likely result in more density-bonus projects. But that's not all. If passed, this initiative will make it more difficult and expensive to get good projects done like Leucadia's north 101 street scape and an art center use at the Pacific View site. It also has buried in it many more restrictions to everyones property rights that weren't advertised on its fliers. This is ironic given that the authors of the initiative have been outspoken proponents of transparency.

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    1. I do not believe it would have any effect on Leucadia streetscape. Changing the zoning at Pacific View would be effected.
      The reason that this initiative was formed was that the Stocks empire had a super majority and had the power, as a super majority, to change zoning at will.
      We're these fears justified? Yes. The Super Majority attempted to hijack the General Plan Update and their hand picked ERAC Committee has attempted to do just that.
      There is no Super Majority any more and not the need that there was to pass this initiative.

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    2. Fact: the initiative upholds the current General Plan, so clearly is not "illegal," nor does it affect individual property rights any more than the current General Plan does. The ONLY difference between it and the current General Plan is the removal of the 4/5 super-majority loophole.

      Both Tony Kranz and Lisa Shaffer signed it because even they understood that the Council can shift opinion and/or members at any time and we could find ourselves right back in the 4/5 super-majority situation again.

      Those interested in knowing what it truly does/doesn't cover should read it for themselves. At just nine pages it's easy to get through and understand: http://encinitasrighttovote.webs.com/apps/documents/

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    3. So the propaganda has started. Anon 10:49 fails to mention that the Planning Commission and the Council need not approve density bonus projects that are dangerous. There are other reasons as well that these projects do not need to be approved.

      It seems like EVERY recent project is a density bonus project, so they are trying to link the initiative with an increase, when the initiative was written in response to what has been happening. The dismal General Plan Update also figured into this issue.

      If you want to blame people, blame Patrick Murphy, the Planning Department and Sacramento Gus.

      On second thought, maybe we should stop calling him that since they would rather disassociate themselves with him like most of us would, too.

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    4. Yes, according to Coast News, Gus Vina got a vote of no confidence as interim City Manager in Sacramento, before he came here. I feel anyone making over $100,000 per year at the city should take a 10 to 20% cut in wages. Let them leave; qualified people would line up for their jobs!

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    5. 20% is chicken feed, cut all city salaries and pensions by 50%. Anything less will result in the bankruptcy of the city. On the one hand, bring it on,let them all lose their jobs, let them try to "sell " their services somewhere else. They won't be able, they"ll be lined up at the front door of city hall begging to get back at sucking at the govt teet. Tell them no. There are plenty of city workers from San Bernardino and Stockton looking for jobs, hire some of them at a 50% reduction in pay. They'll sit on their asses just like the current crop, but at least we'll be saving 50% in pay and pension.

      And why weren't we told about Gus's vote of no confidence prior to his being hired??

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    6. The people on the committee, deciding to hire Gus, should have made it publicly known; my understanding: they did know. I was told, when I asked a councilmember at Environmental Day a couple of years ago, at Cottonwood Creek, about the Coast News article (about Vina's vote of no confidence) "that was political."

      Isn't almost everything to do with our City manager's office "political?"

      Pretense and nomenclature substituting for purpose with integrity. The politics of expansion trumps anything else, because the City is a machine, feeding on us, citizens. The City subsidizes and supports expansion to pay for it's expanding operating expenses and capital improvement costs.

      Rather than doing "vision retreats for the electeds," Gus Vina should be doing legitimate needs assessments of the people in our neighborhoods, independent of lobbyists, and development, including city development, promoting more and more expansion of their profits, their benefits, through this para-governmental exploitive complex, while our fees keep going up, our cost of living keeps escalating; at the same time, our community character and quality of life keep going down . . .

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  6. It is illegal and the courts will throw it out should it pass.

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    1. Posted again here to respond to the above:

      Fact: the initiative upholds the current General Plan, so clearly is not "illegal," nor does it affect individual property rights any more than the current General Plan does. The ONLY difference between it and the current General Plan is the removal of the 4/5 super-majority loophole.

      Both Tony Kranz and Lisa Shaffer signed it because even they understood that the Council can shift opinion and/or members at any time and we could find ourselves right back in the 4/5 super-majority situation again.

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    2. Thank you 12:10. You will have to repeat this again and again, I'm afraid.

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    3. The courts will not invalidate the initiative. It was reviewed by an attorney experienced in writing initiatives and approved by City Attorney Glenn Sabine.

      The land use element of the City's General Plan already requires a vote of the public with certain land use changes, but allows the council to approve without a public vote by a super majority of 4/5 of the council members. This is the loophole that the initiative will close.

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    4. Thats a complete lie.... other Cities have passed similar measure.

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  7. Only one news outlet picked this up this morning:

    http://www.northcoastcurrent.com/encinitas/2013/01/19/backers-initiative-qualifies-for-ballot/

    Wonder why it didn't even get a mention online anywhere else yet?

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    1. Because the North County Times and the Union Tribune are owned by developer Doug Manchester!

      Manchester backed Stocks, Bilbray, and Danon. How representative of Encinitas voters were those candidates?

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  8. nowhere to be found on Encinitas Patch or Coast News either. I guess 'pricier burritos' at Chipotle is more important ...

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  9. Already the lies and distortions have started. The initiative does not affect the density bonus law. This is a state mandate. The initiative does require a public vote for a density increase which would allow a greater density bonus.

    Density bonus is already being exploited in every larger development in Encinitas, like the Brown property, the Bahlmann property, and Desert Rose. Anything that can be done under current zoning regulations will be permitted under the initiative. If you want a 2-story addition on your house, you will be able to do it if it meets all the other current requirements, such as setbacks and lot coverage. Two-stories are allowed in the city, even 3-stories in certain specific plan areas with mixed use. All existing specific plans are NOT nullified, although this untruth is already being circulated by certain individuals.

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  10. Some people are more equal than others.

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  11. "So the propaganda has started" (Anon12:35). I think the propaganda started when the pro-initiative fliers were created showing a high rise building next to single family homes with the title COMING SOON NEAR YOU. If that isn't propaganda I don't know what is.

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  12. You are not correct Anon 12:09. Read Section 6 of the initiative. It makes three changes to existing property rights and Section 6 has nothing to do with limiting City Coucil’s ability to approve up-zoning. First, it limits every property in the City to two stories. Second, it limits building height for every property in the City to 30 feet. Third, it modifies how height is measured for everyone. It absolutely reduces existing property rights, especially in certain Specific Plans. These changes will actually reduce the number of housing units the State currently gives us credit for which will increase our need to modify zoning to meet the State’s housing requirements. It makes no sense to me why that section is in the initiative.

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    1. You are dead wrong. All Section 6 does is change the legal language in the General Plan and Municipal Code to make the initiative compatible with with the existing GP. Read Section 3 and the summary by the City Attorney to understand exactly what the initiative does do. Also read the relevant sections of the GP and MC referenced in the initiative. It appears you haven't done any of this.

      The initiative does not take away any existing property rights. These are all preserved. What it changes is the way major amendments are done to increase property rights that currently do not exist, e.g., higher density and higher structure heights, which is a way to allow developers to reap a higher profit. These kinds of major amendments would go to the voters to decide, giving the voters the right to decide whether developers get bigger financial windfalls and are being held responsible for infrastructure costs now borne by the public.

      We often hear from a developer that a project doesn't pencil out unless additional property rights are granted through a major amendment. Under the Right to Vote Initiative the voters will make the decision rather than a 4/5 council super majority.




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    2. So anon 19 Jan 8:51 is correct. My/Your neighbor gets to vote on my/your room addition. Fine so be it, as long as you understand that ALL and I mean ALLLL development in the city will grind to a halt. And as city development and remodeling grinds to a halt so will tax revenues. Which means less city services(money) for the library and parks, road maintenance etc.
      Way to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.

      What's next?? Will my neighbors get to vote to decide what color I can paint my house?? Oh yeah, it's been done. DEMA decides what color a building can be painted downtown. DEMA a quisiofficial city govt that the voters have no rights over.

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    3. That is absurd. Who told you that?

      You actually expect people to believe that there would be a city-wide election every time someone wanted an addition on his house?

      Use your head.

      The initiative is about ZONING CHANGES, not remodeling or addition permits. You don't change the zoning on your lot when you remodel, add a second story, or an in-law unit.

      If you're trying to start a fearmongering campaign, you should at least come up with a story that makes a little sense.

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    4. W.C- Don't help the BIA.... even though they need it. They come up with the stupidest and shittiest things just to make more profit for their developer clients. The BIA came up with the Density Bonus Laws that stripped massive authority away from local control and gave it to the state. Cities should never cart blanche upzone any area because the state already increased densities in our City 20 to 30% whether you like it or not. Our City needs to get behind a coalition of other cities opposed to Density Bonus Law and get is it reversed. What has our City done about this major issue.

      Ask Sacramento Gus what he has done on the subject? He was up in Sacramento as their finance director during the whole creation of the density bonus laws as he was leading that City towards financial collapse.

      I'd say we need to hire leaders with the right vision and proven actions, not hiring people that were partially responsible for implementing the nightmare conditions for Cities today.

      Sacramento Gus needs to go.

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    5. Yes, and think of the poor bastards who get him next! I hate to think that they will call him Encinitas Gus. I am so ashamed!

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  13. Happy Birthday, W,C, Thanks for providing a forum, for caring about our community, also for your sense of humor.

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  14. http://www.northcoastcurrent.com/ There's a poll on that page. I just voted yes. There were, before, only two no votes, surely by development interests, imo.

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    1. 4 No, 1 Yes. Super majority...You lose.

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  15. Now 88% voted YES. Only four no votes. You lose, and you probably have 4 different e-mail addresses, or you deleted your cookies so you could vote 4 times! What a chump. People in this community, don't have to be manipulated by fear and greed!

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    1. So immature....So immature.(shaking head from side to side). It's no wonder this community is in the shape it's in with thinking like yours.

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  16. City Council- Fire Sacramento Gus who was campaigning for and supported jerome stocks bankruptcy plan to build a regional sports park at all costs!


    Firing Sacramento Gus is your highest priority!

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  17. That 'special' meeting with the very least possible public notice possible, to fund the regional sports park was amazing. It was a done deal the moment it started. No prior details of the funding were released to the public. All the details of this politically motivated scheme were layed out on hand written foam boards, layers on the floor for the public to review, if you wished to crawl on the floor.
    Yea, Gus did this. He did this because his employer
    told him to.
    He has, in essence, a new employer now.
    Maybe there will be a change.

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    1. What new employer?? Barth, Muir and Gaspar voted to fund the park, just because there are new council people doesn't mean Gus will change his ways. HE still needs to kiss ass, just two different asses.

      Think for yourself. THINK!!!

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    2. Gus is definitely an equal opportunity kiss up! He should have knee pads tailored into his suits!

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  18. Sorry I can't and won't support anything that Sheila Cameron endorses. Nope, no way no how.

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    1. Say what you want, I can't, won't support anything endorsed by Sheila Cameron. And your guilt trip falls on deaf ears. Go to the Leucadian and cry in your beer.
      Btw I never attacked SC all I said was I would never support anything she endorses. But you attack me by calling me a sore loser. You sir or ma'am are intolerant. Intolerant of an opposing point of view or opinion. Good luck with that.

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    2. Support who you want, "Anonymous," but if you won't share your name, who cares who you do or don't support? You are entitled to keep your cowardly opinions to yourself! You are obviously close minded, as your mind's made up, decided by personality, and your ego, not by the facts.

      Opinions vary. Truth is constant. You are all blather, no substance. Calling someone out by name, trying to anonymously trash her, with your arrogant "disregard" is the mark of a bully, and as I said, a coward.

      Bullies are always cowards.

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  19. Not true. Some bullies are not Anon and are just mean bullies, not cowards.

    I like the initiative but do not like a lot of things SC supports.

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  20. And another building catches fire and burns to the ground...Mmmm
    Why does every fire in Encinitas result in a total loss?? Mmm
    I thought all these $5 million fire houses were going to solve these problems.....Mmmm

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  21. Call Mark Muir - he'll tell you why only you can prevent bloated pensions! Did the city buy a reinforced chair for the council seat he has? BURP - $174,000/year pension - the sweet life!

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  22. Finally some good news, the Enc you need us blog will be down until the 27 of Jan. Encinitas blog, you need us...no we don't.

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  23. Okay, I just started reading this thread. Clearly, all the people against the Encinitas Right to Vote initiative are developers or somehow related.

    The BOTTOM LINE - The initiative DOESN'T take away property rights. I preserves current rights! If you can do it now, you will be able to do it after the initiative is passed. It will not stop you from doing anything that you can currently do. Opponents (developers) want you to think otherwise. The crafters of this initiative were extremely careful to focus the initiative on big developments that will require zoning changes (something that no one wants, unless you are a developer and want to earn big dollars off raping Encinitas). The initiative was finely tuned by an expert attorney in this specialty and fashioned after two cities who have already been very successful at implementing the same type of initiative (Yorba Linda, AND Escondido). Surrounding cities are in awe at what the proponents have been able to accomplish and are contacting them to find out what they can do for their city as well. The citizens are speaking out against big development. Enough is enough. Go away developers!

    Citizens of Encinitas, be prepared for a big attack against the initiative by developers. They are not happy about this initiative because it means they will have to abide by what the citizens want (which is the way it should be to begin with).

    Thank you so much to the citizens who put their neck on the line and used their precious time and energy to get this initiative to qualify. Now, vote for it when it comes to the ballot!

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