Saturday, October 31, 2015

City releases proposed high density standards

Let's go to 3 stories and 38 feet high!

While the map page of the document is left blank, two maps discussed in February are here and here. The "ready-made" map was designed by staff, while the "build-your-own" map was designed using input from the discredited and defunct Peak Democracy site.


  1. Put all the present and future required RHNA units in Olivenhain.

    Cardiff, Leucadia and Old and New Encinitas have enough ugly, dense shit already.

  2. I thought the Coastal Commission would only let us go 30 feet high, even without PropA. Carlsbad citizens won a huge victory on the Caruso project. Perhaps we need to follow their lead?

    1. Who owns Barter Town? Eckes et al?

    2. Commission allowed higher before prop A. Commission didn't review Prop A. Stayed out of it.

  3. A public discussion of the concept of "Floating Zones" might actually be productive. The situation we are in is that projected population growth over the next 2 dozen years or so, in this most desirable area, is frightening. I know that some folks want to stay with the original General Plan, but this is not going to happen.

    Going to 3 story (or even more) along the major arterials, with smaller units (studio and 1-2 bedroom), seems to be a better way to provide for population growth. I would assume the battle will not be over height, but rather over setbacks, to prevent huge canyons, and some of the battle will be over view corridors and transportation.

    Builders so far have chosen to build huge mansions on little lots to provide upscale housing for professionals who work in San Diego but want to live here, and also to maximize builder's profits. Let's change that. We need to provide lower cost housing for the people who work in our shops and also for starter families and senior citizens and seasonal visitors.

    The "Peak Democracy" approach failed us, and I hope that our City Staff and Council are able to come up with some new HCD plan that would satisfy our community.

  4. Staff has repeatedly presented illustrated board drawing options that are all three story, in spite of clearly knowing what this community does not want. This plan is doomed to failure because of their continuing to propose what Prop A has protected us from.

    Fire the whole bunch, good riddance Murphy, thanks for leaving. Please take your underlings with you, and I do mean Manjeet and Masih, the community destroyer, asap. These people have shown they do not work for us, although we sure as heck have to pay them and pay them ungodly sums for little performance value. Sweep, sweep sweep them all out and clean up city hall.

    1. Throw in Mike Strong, Roy Sapu', and Kerry Kusiak. Liars all and destroyers of the General Plan.

    2. Haven't read the links....but, I don't want a "Back to the Future" clock tower. Too high will be too high and I will never vote for it. But I do want good architecture. This project seems to be moving regardless of some people saying no to three stories. At the end of it I hope we can tell City how much above 30 feet can we go to get a good looking 3rd story? I don't know. But I don't like the flat look of Pacific Station at the top. Ii think that is above 30 feet. The three stories doesn't bother me. But the flat look from Vulcan does.

    3. If by "flat" look, you mean large unbroken flat surfaces, then I agree with you.

      Three stories can be fine, as long as the second and third stories are stepped back, the materials colors and textures are varied and interesting.

      As I drive around town lately, I've noticed many three and four story houses and buildings. If these are a part of the current state we generally like, then I don't think a handful more are going to change much.

      I'd rather not have any more traffic, but I don't think it's possible to stop that. Can anyone show me an example of a success story where a coastal SoCal city has been able to stop population growth?

    4. 7:25 AM
      Again with the three stories are fine. It is two stories and 30 feet. It has always been two stories and 30 feet. It will continue to be two stories and 30 feet. Take your developer talk to another city. Yes, other cities have said no to the developer push to get higher density buildings. That's where they're making their money now. You are a stooge for them and the city council.

    5. 7:42,

      It hasn't "always been" 2 and 30. Open your eyes and look around. There are buildings of all ages dating back to at least the 1950s before most of us were even born at three and four stories.

      Drive up Manchester in Cardiff from the lagoon and look at the whole right side of the street. Several of the homes there are four stories.

      Drive down Sealane Drive. More there.

      Look at the gold dome of the Greek Orthodox Church--way higher than 30 ft. (and beautiful).

      I believe the new hospital building tops out at 55 feet, which is the tallest building in Encinitas.

      The Vulcan Towers building next to City Hall is three stories. And so are a few of the houses along Neptune, and half the duplexes in Cardiff.

      Some of these are well done, and others are pure visual blight. To my eye there is zero correlation between height and community character. We've got ugly crap houses that are one story, and we've got ugly crap houses that are four stories. We've also got interesting and beautiful architecture that is low and high.

      You can call me whatever names you want, but I vote and what's important to me is quality, beauty, and suitability with the surroundings, not an arbitrary height measurement.

    6. Senior Housing Terrace on Requeza in the middle of low density residential is 4 stories.

    7. 7:42. Buildings built before the city incorporated were b uilt under County zoning with higher density and height, it is one reason the citizens left the county

  5. 4:40 PM
    Move. Move to San Francisco. Help them with their population growth. Stop being the shield for the planning department and the council.

  6. Here's an ideal location for some major density projects. Sculpins backyard is so deserving of such. Sorry for his other neighbors but the blame rests on him.

  7. As long as we vote on it, The requirements of Prop A are satisfied.

    1. Didn't you read the draft housing element sent to HCD. Once we vote on it we give away our power to the council to change anything the couoncil want to change for their developer friends.

    2. That which can be won at the ballot box can also be lost at the ballot box.

    3. If the housing element update as currently written is passed by the voters, it gives the council authority to make any future upzoning changes related to Housing Element Updates without a public vote. Of course, any future council could say any upzoning is related to a HEU. The public get high density urbanization as fast as the council can approve it. Tony gets his wish: Prop. A is killed.

    4. This document is a power grab by the Council and the Director of Planning and Building.
      They give themselves decision making powers which cannot be appealed.
      Read the document for yourselves and read between the lines while you're at it! Creative "setbacks", creative "height limits" "exceptions to height limit which may not exceed 10 feet" --so does that mean 48' height rather than 38feet? Keep reading you will find more.
      The chosen sites are the same ones the city has always used. So why are we paying all the staff to "copy and paste" to the tune of millions of dollars in salaries?

  8. I see different places for zone change. Not all El Camino R., which is good.

  9. November 2016 cannot come fast enough. When this 7 year process finally ends, the BIA will litigate and it will end up with a judge in Sacramento making these decisions on land-use and then Prop A proponents including the Mom and Dad of Prop A, Lisa 'Ethics, Moir? Shaffer and Tony 'Slacker Cracker' Kranz will be in real political trouble. Solana Beach deserves them. As to the Coastal Commission, on July 1, 2013, the staff wrote a letter stating they had HUGE problems with Prop A, and a week later after Everett DeLano and Brucie joined Pam SLater Price and a former Chair of the CCC imported from Malibu all met in a closed-door meeting with CCC staff, and voila, a second letter was sent to Teresa stating that Delano had convinced them, the CCC staff in SD that there wasn't any damage done to property-rights and values by A. Meaning, because of Teresa's cowardice, or treachery, remember TB finally admitted that she NEVER signed the petition for A in front of Pam and Hershel Price, Mayor Barth announced that she and her peers would not proceed with a public hearing before the Coastal Commissioners; ending any further discussion on A.

    While there is no prevailing authority that can immediately force the City to comply with the housing law and allow the hearing TB did an 180 degree turn on, what IS clear is that after 7 years of this nonsense over a map for the state showing areas of potential up-zoning for family-units, a State of California judge will then be empowered to make decisions, and much like the recent judicial opinion on Desert Rose that was overturned Encinitas property owners will be free to determine what the 'best' and 'highest' use of their property.

    1. As you obviously are a puppet of the City your motives are clear. Your attack on all the civic minded citizens who oppose your narrow viewpoint is what one would expect from you.

      You conveniently forgot to write about all the correspondence, emails,, phone calls, personal meetings, and backdoor dealings that City and its Staff engineered and engaged in with the CCC .

      It is all documented.Get your facts straight, if you can.

    2. 10:25 AM

      "It is all documented." Where? I mean real documentation not just someone's post claiming it happened.

    3. I hate to say it folks but Mikey is correct.This will be decided by a judge. 1:It takes the heat off the politicians,2: It satisfies the building industry thugs, and 3 : It facilitates the maintenance of the existing pension/benefits system. Other than that, not only is Mikey a despicable POS, I've been reading some pretty scary quotes from W.C. on another blog. "I'm a Texas loving Teabagger" among other similar things. I'm getting the impression that W.C. Varones is more of an organization than a person.

    4. 7:38 AM

      A few points:

      "... it will end up with a judge in Sacramento making these decisions on land-use ..." Superior Court is in Vista, the Appellate Court is in San Diego and the Supreme Court is in San Francisco.

      "While there is no prevailing authority that can immediately force the City to comply with the housing law ..." true but the state relies on lawsuits to adjudicate whether cities and counties are complying with the housing element requirements. HCD review findings holds great weight but they aren't regulatory.

      Hopefully, it never gets to a judge.

    5. And finally, and most important: Mikey "Liar for Hire" is never right.

  10. 7:38 AM
    How was the party last night with your cohorts?

  11. Slacker Kracker? This is some vintage Andreen "Queen of Mean" style screed....

  12. Can someone please explain to me what happens when and if the City violates Prop. A? Do we sue the city? Who pays for the lawsuit? It seems as if they are already attempting to circumvent Prop.A, at least it seems that way to me, and I was wondering if there is anything regular citizens can do when they do it?

    On another note, I guess Catherine has decided to take points from Lisa S. about how to malign her colleagues. From her latest newsletter:
    At this week’s meeting, we voted 3-2 (Shaffer, Kranz and me in favor) to award a $573,000 contract to develop the plans, construction documents, and environmental clearance, and to secure approval at the state level.

    It’s too bad that the entire city council wasn’t behind moving forward on this project, which is critically important for improving safe and legal beach access. Mayor Gaspar and Councilmember Muir opposed it based on what appeared to be concerns about noisy train horns and a desire to do more strategic planning. The consultant we hired will do public outreach as part of figuring out how to address the noise issue with either quiet zones or wayside horns. With the consultant on board, we can reasonably expect to put the crossing in at the same time as the rail trail, which wouldn't be likely otherwise. Working through the bureacracy is challenging and complex, and it requires expertise for success. Also, the consultant's contract can be terminated, so it's a relatively low-risk investment for a very important beneficial result.

    High-priority projects need to move forward. We have to get started if we want this to happen.

    1. 9:56,

      What, in your mind, does Prop A say? And what specific acts has the city done to "circumvent" or outright violate Prop A?

    2. Beach access?? What's stopping you from going to Moonlight and going to the beach?? You are a true moron... How deeply sad that you get to vote on issues that result in higher taxes for all others...

    3. 9:56 AM

      This, to me, highlights that many people who voted for Prop A didn't understand it or had a (not so) hidden agenda. How can the city placing a ballot measure on the November 2016 election be circumventing Prop A? That is what Prop A requires.

      You reveal that your true intentions with Prop A was to stop any rezoning for affordable housing (no matter whether you really believe it's affordable). The real intention of Prop A was to prevent it from happening. The "give people a chance to vote" was pretty much a sham.

    4. The (not so) hidden agenda of "affordable housing" is pretty obvious. That's why Prop A passed.

    5. 12:47 PM

      'The (not so) hidden agenda of "affordable housing" . Since it's in a state statute it's by definition not hidden. You may not agree with it and may not have been aware of it but it was in plain sight. Of course you don't accept it.

      You are correct that Prop A passed as an attempt to frustrate it but it ultimately won't work. If it doesn't get approved at the polls it will be settled in the courts.

    6. A sham? That's exactly what the public will be getting -- a chance to vote. Without Prop. A the council would simply have approved any upzoning with a super majority. It's happened many times in the past. Check to see how the two 101 specific plans were passed. The city tried it again in the Cardiff Specific Plan but was thwarted by an aroused citizenry.

      Many people who voted against Prop. A didn't understand it. They were swayed by the lies propagated by the city council (remember Rutan and Tucker?) and opponents (remember Propzilla?), The proponents of Prop. A were out spent almost 5 to1 by the opponents.

      So far the city hasn't tried to circumvent Prop. A. If they do, a filing of a lawsuit would quickly stop them. They aren't that stupid. Or are they?

    7. 12:59 PM

      I don't remember voting for the original general plan. Prop A was sold, in part, on purported past council abuses which were non existent, Prop A only came about as the city tried to address its housing element requirements. Its goal was to frustrate any higher density.

      Yes, it's good that citizens get to vote on major changes to their community's plans but Prop A proponents are banking on the majority of voters not wishing to have any changes even if they are required. But since Prop A is a local initiative, it will ultimately be trumped by the state statute.

    8. We'll see, 2:18

    9. "Frustrate"...the new boogaloo-kaubuki word!

    10. The original General Plan always allowed for upzoning by requiring a General Plan amendment approved by all 5 council members.. An exception was added allowing a super majority to approve GP amendments. Abuses were existent -- 12:59 PM names two and the third that was defeated because Teresa Barth had to recuse herself and Maggie Houlihan wouldn't vote for it. No super majority.

      The city hadn't updated its Housing Element in 20 years. Poster 2:18 PM ascribes motives to the Prop. A proponents that is pure speculation. There were lots of spot zonings. One leading to another. An example is the Brown property on Lake. The city was ready to give a huge upzone, but neighborhood resistance prevented it. Again no super majority. Many had had enough. It was a coincidence that the city happened to finally decide to do a housing update after 20 years of sitting on their hands and doing nothing at the same time that petitions started to circulate to get Prop. A on the ballot. The required 15% of registered voters for a special election was easily gathered.

      Remember, the power to rezone property involves the power to create great wealth. It's always better if the public is involved.

    11. 7:13 PM

      The city had several draft housing element updates that didn't get HCD approval so they went nowhere. The general plan update which included an updated housing element was well before Prop A petitions were circulated.

      "There were lots of spot zonings" No there weren't. For one thing a spot zoning means a zoning category for one or several properties. If you mean rezonings, where a property is rezoned to a higher intensity (upzoning) there weren't many of those either.

  13. Someone asked when the last time Kranz posted something from or about a bar. That date would be Oct. 13, 2015 at the Biergarten for those interested. The other things posted are about sports, and city stuff.

  14. Made you look, lol! But not on his FB feed. Like I said, you won't get relief on that issue from this or any other council. The three options are pitchforks, the ABC, and cops sitting on the bar. Everything else is hot air....

  15. Slimy Mikey is so transparent. What a piece of work he is.

    On another note, last night, the only trouble that came down the whole evening was in front of Shelter, with a take down of some jerk by a couple of enforcers? in pirate drag that one was heard to say, stop resisting, I am an undercover cop. If true, good on our local enforcement for being out there when most needed. No badge was produced with all the immediate action going on and the culprits wised up before the uniformed personnel showed up.

    For a whole night, this was pretty tame of an evening when identities can be hidden behind costumes and anonymity be preserved. Have the bar owners finally come to their senses? I doubt it, but at least fun reigned supreme with little exception but for that in front of Shelter. Hey, if it is outside of their property line, they have no responsibility and are off the hook. How convenient for them.

    If there were 'privately' hired personnel to handle these situations without requiring on duty deputies to respond, then good on the bar owners for finally doing something. If, on the other hand, our new Captain hit the ground running and saw fit to see what was most needed, cudos to him. A warm welcome to Encinitas, Sheriff John is due.

  16. To 12:13
    From 10:25 a.m. Nov. 1

    Do your own research. Start with a public records request to the city. Ask for all communications between Eric Stevens(CCC) and the City Admistration, the Council, and the Planning Dept. (from the planners to the director) which were exchanged during the Prop A period. You may get an education, but then again perhaps not.
    You could even make a public records request to the CCC directly for all communications between the CCC and our city .
    Time for a Reality Check.
    Do the work yourself as so many of us do. Take the time to research. Don't just shoot your mouth off.
    I hope you will post what you find out on EU.

    1. 1:20 PM

      So I assume you already have these documents. Why not send them to EU to post as EU seems willing to do. If you are unwilling to do this then I'm going to assume you've ultimately got nothing. I'm not the one claiming inappropriate behavior, you are. Back it up.

      The "Reality Check" is if you have discovered inappropriate behavior it's on you to prove it. You haven't produce one shred of evidence to support your accusations.

      Just so you know I'm not 7:38 AM. I just want tangible evidence and not hearsay.

    2. 2:32

      Bull crap- it is you who are lazy and seeking to mislead. You are the one unwilling to do research. You sling mud and blame others. You don't the believe the statement is correct, then show all of us proof the statement is incorrect.

    3. 7:13 PM

      What a great racket. Make things up and then challenge others to waste their time to prove you wrong. Fact is you've got nothing. I think you're lying. Now prove me wrong or are you too lazy to do that.

    4. I'm not 10:28.

      As a general rule, the person making an assertion should back it up with evidence.

      If we are playing by 7:13's rules, then I could assert that 7:13 beats his wife, and that I have proof. The burden is now on 7:13 to provide evidence that he doesn't beat his wife. Until that happens, we should all assume 7:13 is a known wife-beater.

      See how stupid that is?

      Put up or shut up.

    5. 10:28 and 10:45-

      If either of you can disprove the comments made, then we are all awaiting your facts. Your inability to produce a singel fact reveals you are either

      a. Lazy
      b. Unwilling to do the research
      c. Did the research and discovered everything written was real.

      Try going to a council meeting sometime, or watching at home or on the internet, or going to city hall and researching data, of filing a public records request. Otherwise put up or shut up- the burden is on you, but you do not seem up to the challenge or lacking in facts

    6. And you are a wife beater until you can prove otherwise.

      Sorry, I don't make the rules.

    7. 2:54 PM

      How obdurate. I don't have to prove anything because you reveal yourself to be a fraud. When responding to you I have to go into parent mode and treat you like a small child.

      I watch most council meetings on TV and am pretty well informed. I look up past council reports and even review past council and planning commission meetings. I frequently look things up to confirm my responses.

      But you can't even make the effort to present a cogent argument let alone back it up with even a modicum of evidence.

      So I'll just descend to your level: "I know you are but what am I?"

  17. Ah, the end days....

    As I understand it, Ehlers/Delano designed Prop A to take the land-use power out of Jerome Stock's hands; believing it would, if passed, stop any and all new construction in Encinitas. Then Tony and Lisa went out an won their seats, setting up a low-life civil war. When Ehlers was removed from the Planning Commission in the early oughts for misuse of city staff and resources, he publicly stated to Stocks that the worst mistake in Encinitas History was his removal and that he would live to see Stocks regret removing the slug from Olivenhain from a powerful commission. Prop A hasn't a drop of altruism in it.

    By fooling the voters into approving an initiative which mandates a heighth limit, all future affordable-housing would have to be spread out, taking up 3 to 5 times as much property laterally/horizontally as a grouping of 3/4 story multi-family unit development.

    Misunderstood by much of the great unwashed on this blog is something called 'math', by which I mean that by following the laws of California, the only way to fulfill the mandate is by either spreading out over hell and gone, or by going up over 28 feet; which is WHY there will be a vote; ONLY the voters can approve the housing-element and wouldn't it be both ironic and street justice to have the new plan approved and the taxpayers of Encinitas vote to cram all the future affordable-housing into Olivenhain, where the Delano/Ehler's bait and switch roller coaster began? There is no altruism in North Coast Advocates, just vinegary revenge and sweet narcissism. C'mon Sheila, Tony and Julie, once more with feeling. As wacky as Sheila can be, at least she hasn't ever misspent $28.5 mil and then claimed to be running for Mayor as a fiscal conservative!
    Plus, Cameron is her real name. Vermont isn't Hollywood.

    How does Mayor Dadla sound?

    1. 8:57 you reveal your intent to mislead the public with your own words. The reason there will be a vote is only because Prop A passed. Prior to this the public had no vote.

  18. Where's the proof that Ehler's was removed for misuse of funds? If you're going allege a misdeed like that, potentially of a criminal nature, you better back it up in black and white. This sounds like the typical Andreen hatefest towards Maggie and anyone associated with her.

    Can't we get past this kind of crap? All the Stocks/Ehlers stuff is old news, like 15 years ago. This kind of petty garbage shouldn't be part of the discussion about affordable housing and zoning, which is complicated and politicized enough as it is.

    Sheila did good work for our town, but that too was in the past. Let's move on with what we've got. And yes, I would be down with backing Dadla. Smart guy....

  19. PS, if you have forgotten about Mike Andreen, here's a reminder...

  20. 8:57 AM

    "When Ehlers was removed from the Planning Commission in the early oughts for misuse of city staff and resources, he publicly stated to Stocks that the worst mistake in Encinitas History was his removal and that he would live to see Stocks regret removing the slug from Olivenhain from a powerful commission. Prop A hasn't a drop of altruism in it."

    This is the first I've heard of this and need more evidence to believe it.

    1. It's vintage Mikey - pulled straight out of his undercarriage with no evidence to support his ravings, per his usual.

      Prop A is not "no growth." What it does do is restore the General Plan that required a vote by residents for increases in intensity of land use and height. Former council members saw fit to remove this voting right behind closed doors and Prop A righted that wrong.

  21. 8:57 - AKA Mike Andreen, Liar for Hire.

  22. Mikey still hasn't explained that Chamber of Commerce fiasco or was it with DEMA. Come on, Mikey tell us what happened with that juicy story with you in the middle.

  23. Ah yes, Mike Andreen and Gary Tucker. both booted out because of questionable financial matters. Here's the background.

    Andreen sued one of the female board members. He always pick on females. Nothing came of the lawsuit. It was a way of intimidating. That's how he operates.


    Check this link for a great photographic portrait of Andreen.

  25. Thanks for the link to their booklet W.C. Its as if they never heard of Prop A and their still doing their "Which 3 story building do you like best?" slide show.

    1. 7:36,

      I'm no expert, but I think Prop A calls for either two stories OR a vote.

      I think the city has been pretty clear that there will be a vote.

      Is your understanding of these basic facts different?

    2. They have heard of Prop A. They have been very clear about a vote to be held in November 2016.

      Regarding three stories, the state has made it pretty clear that high land price areas can not say something is zoned to be affordable if the density is below 30 units per acre, which is not really realizable with two stories

      Even with granny flats counted, we're not getting the additional units we need. So we get some three story units in some limited high traffic areas. It seems like a compromise that works.

      What slide show of a housing element update that meets state mandates would you like to see?

    3. Granny flats aren't being correctly counted. The official counts were supposedly during the Census, when they WERE NOT counted. Only the number of residents at a particular address are counted, not the number of units, especially if some of the units are not listed on the residential building record.

      The amnesty has almost expired, and it did nothing to incentivize homeowners' coming forward. They would have been subject to excessive fees for permitting in addition to the affordable unit application fee. Less expensive for them to stay under the radar.

    4. 1:12 PM

      Actually, the Census attempts to count every unit whether or not they are legal. But due to Title 13, the Census Bureau cannot reveal those units or any units/addresses for that matter. The reason is that revealing illegal units could be a disincentive for people living in those units to response to the Census. However, the illegal unit counts will show up in higher level summaries.

  26. Let's get off this state mandated 30 housing units per acre. if you lived in Northern California it would be 20 or 10 housing units per acre. So why did the state legislators decide that southern California should be blessed with increased housing density. The dumb### city council has been going along with the charade because the city needs money. Sales taxes from the bars just doesn't give as much as a million dollar house.

    1. 8:05 hit it right.

      The State admits that it uses "R30 as a proxy" - a PROXY - for affordability, knowing full well most of that high-density housing will be market rate. The State does not care about this sham/scam, and why not? Because the "mandate" was written by and for developers, with a handful of misguided Shaffer "sustainability" types snookered by the hype and throwing in with developers.

    2. Yup. It's definitely not a perfect system, but that's the law.

      In general, the thinking is that the selling price of a home has three major component costs: cost of land, cost of improvements (grading, utilities, driveways, buildings and landscaping) and profit margin for the builder.

      There isn't much regulation can do to affect the last two, but they can drive down the land cost per unit by increasing density. In reality, prices are not set bottom up (cost plus margin), but rather top down (market forces and comps). Builders probably start with a target price point and margins, then work backwards to figure out what they can afford to spend on land and improvements.

      The state housing law doesn't always work as well as one would like, but it generally does. Even market rate units at R30 are nearly always cheaper than units of similar size and quality on more land. This makes intuitive sense. If you could buy a third floor condo or a comparable detached home on a quarter acre, which would you prefer? The detached home is more desirable, and so the market would drive the price higher on that home, relative to the condo. Ergo, the more dense option is cheaper.

      Affordability is relative. A million dollar condo on the coast is affordable relative to two million dollar detached homes in the same neighborhood.

      In general, R30 produces options that, while not cheap, are more affordable than the alternative.

      That may be an unsatisfying explanation, but it's accurate.

    3. Affordable? Your twisted logic doesn't meet the state and federal definitions of income levels that qualify a person for affordable. housing. The market rate units will never be affordable at lower income levels unless subsidized. Where's the money?

      In the end those people in need of affordable won't find it in Encinitas

    4. 7:06 - I'm not sure what in 6:45's logic seems twisted to you. If it is that they focus on density vs. income levels, the rational is this: The state mandate for a housing element is to create zoning that allows for a property owner to potentially build affordable housing and also to allow for a certain growth. This state has then determined what that is. The state may be totally wrong. But, Encinitas can not afford to litigate this out.

      The deeper question is - why not allow zoning to potentially allow several R-30 projects on busy streets. My view, is better this than higher than existing density spread everywhere, including places where our infrastructure will not allow it.

      In my perfect world, we would be left alone, with no additional housing. But.....that's just not the way it is.

    5. R-30 on busy could possibly go wrong? Oh, that's right: R-30 = 300 more cars per day onto your already busy street. Sounds like a real brainstorm you're having there.

  27. 6:45 = developer shill spewing the "it's the law" scare tactic mantra.

    I'd rather run afoul of the developer-influenced "law" and take the long-threatened State judge over the filthy developer/City mutual hand washing we're sure to experience should the Housing Element Update passes.

    1. I just checked, and I'm not a developer. Don't have any financial interest in development, don't have any friends or family who are developers. My opinions are solely mine. Questioning motives is a cheap way to avoid addressing substance.

      There is a reason people keep bringing up the fact that "it's the law." Because, well, it IS the law. I don't have a problem with trying to change the law, but when we all decide it's okay to decide which laws should be followed, and which are inconvenient, then we all become no better than the idiot drunks who are making life difficult for our neighbors downtown. I'm sure if you asked them, they'd slur and curse out some theory as to why the government should leave them alone.

      Expanding on the explanation I offered at 6:45 . . .

      Remember that this Housing Element process isn't just for Encinitas. As illustrated above, affordability is not binary. If a few R30 zones in Encinitas lower the price per unit from $2M to $1M, that doesn't sound like it does anything useful vis-a-vis affordable housing, right? But remember the bigger picture spread across every community in the state. In Carlsbad, the price per unit might drop from $1.5M to $750K. In San Marcos it might drop from $700K to $400K. And so on down the line until you get to La Mesa or Mojave or Barstow.

      The systemic effect is one of increased options for more affordable housing at EVERY income level--from the restaurant chain management to the dishwasher. The dishwasher in Encinitas who currently lives in La Mesa might not be able to move to Encinitas, but he might be able to find a place he can afford in San Marcos. That increase in options theoretically brings people closer to their jobs, reducing commute miles. When spread over a large area and many people, it might just have a positive impact on traffic.

      It also might keep some businesses from moving jobs out of state because they can't afford to pay a salary that will put a roof over their employees heads today.

      None of this is black and white, and the RHNA quota numbers are at once too big for most of the people on this blog, and maybe too small to put a dent in the overall housing affordability equation statewide, which is a recipe for no one to be truly happy with it.

      But. . .

      It is what it is.

      And yes, it is the law.

    2. "The law" needs to change. Until then, we can just say no.

      Let the judge step in, shill. Then we'll see how much influence developers have with their favorite council members and planning department pals out of the wonder they're rattling the "judge" saber so hard.

    3. 10:42 AM

      '"The law" needs to change. Until then, we can just say no.'

      We already said "No" and so far we're in the hole $350,000. Maybe you'd like to see it continue. If so please direct your donations to the city.

      A judge isn't going to get involved with the content of a HE update if he/she can help it. The judge will simply direct the city to adopt a compliant HE by X date and will remove any impediments to doing so like Prop A. I can't imagine a judge has the time or inclination to go deep into the weeds of a HE.

      So I guess I must be a "shill" as well, as it appears that anyone with the temerity to disagree with you can only be a shill.

    4. A state judge can dismiss a local ordinance at will?

    5. 11:01 AM
      We are in the hole because of three council members who didn't defend the city. Kranz, Shaffer, and Blakespear settled with the BIA without any public discussion of their intentions. Kranz, Shaffer, and Blakespear - remember those names if they decide to run for any office in Encinitas and vote them out of office.

    6. 11:17 AM

      Yes. State statutes supersede local ordinances even if they are the result of a local initiative. Just ask the city of Pleasanton where a judge nullified a local ordinance placing a limit on the number of residential units. It was upheld by the appeals court and Pleasanton was out $2 M. The issue was meeting their RHNA numbers in the HE. Sound familiar?

      11:28 AM

      "We are in the hole because of three council members who didn't defend the city." I guess things are so simple in your world. The BIA suit was mainly about density bonus but the HE was included and was part of the settlement.

    7. 1:23, kinda hard to settle on something that hasn't happened yet and you don't have 100% control over.

      I guess things are so simple in your world.

    8. 8:48 PM

      Sorry but the settlement agreement has happened and in that agreement was the city's pledge to accommodate its RHNA numbers and place the HE update on the November 2016 ballot. The city has 100% control over that. What the city doesn't have control over is the election and what happens afterward if the update is voted down.

      Maybe you want to go down swinging even if that means having worse terms and less flexibility in the outcome.

      There is simple and then there is simplistic.

    9. For a judge to overturn an initiative is rare. It has happened, at the State Supreme Court level. For a Court to overturn an ordinance is easier.

      Our City can find a way to keep Prop A, and to create more affordable housing if it were to get creative. For one thing, it should be able to count many more accessory units as affordable units, even without covenants. Because accessory units are already recognized, through statutory law, as helping to provide for affordable housing.

      They also result in greater density, that is true. However, many uncounted units actually are already providing for affordable housing for family members, or as rentals.

    10. State housing law is about accommodating future growth, not more accurately counting current units.

      I believe we have been approved to count a small number of units against our RHNA quotas, but only when owners step up and declare units, and allow a new low income covenant to be placed on their unit.

      The theory is that we can clout these as new affordable units. The unit isn't new, but the affordability covenant is.

      However, few owners are ever going to step up, for good reasons:

      • a public record of the unit is created, which the IRS could use to identify undeclared rental income.

      • The county assessor might also use the public record to adjust finished square footage, which could affect property tax assessment.

      • Daylighting an accessory unit involves a building inspection to certify that the unit is safe. If the inspector finds bed wiring or lead pipes, or structural deficiencies, it could be very expensive to legalize the unit.

      As for projecting future accessory units as affordable housing, we can only get credit for our historical run rate of covenant-bound unit creation, which is a tiny number. We can put in new incentives (e.g. Waive all fees), and estimate the impact that would have on the run rate, but if you think HCD will accept a projection that says were expecting a 50x increase with some modest incentives, then think again.

      In short, accessory units can play a role in retiring RHNA quota, but it's small role.

    11. Murphy's Amnesty flier was about as weak and discouraging as his conniving mind could make it. He ignored Council instructions to send it to their review before it was mailed. It went out just as he intended so that he could later bemoan (boast about) how few people took advantage of the program.

      Disgusting. And Council? Hoped for the best, then looked the other way in the face of Murphy's insubordination. So...either they were weak puppets of "staff," or they wanted it that way. Pick one.

    12. 6:33 PM

      Let's blame Murphy! It's great that the last two planning directors had "Murphy" for a surname. It makes slamming them that much easier.

      However, I've talked with people who have illegal units who will never voluntarily make them legal. You're so sure that amnesty is the ultimate, and painless, solution that its failure to show even a minimal response has to be the handiwork of nefarious actors. So it all has to Murphy's fault.

    13. Some folks will never come forward of course, but Murphy's program ensures virtually no one will.

      Jeff Murphy's name is on this one, too bad you can't wrap your brain around that fact.

    14. Let's see. If I come forward to make my unit legal, then I will be limited in what current and future rent I can charge, I might get audited for undeclared rental income, the county might raise my property taxes, and the building inspector might force me to make expensive upgrades.

      And you think a better flyer would have convinced me?

    15. A better program, not flier. Program. Not everyone wants to scam the system, as you apparently do.

    16. Are you suggesting everyone wants to follow the law?

    17. Now you're just being silly. I said "not everyone," which logically works both ways. You just happen to fall into the scammer camp.

    18. "A better program, not flier."

      The council is responsible for approving the program. This isn't the first time an amnesty program has been tried. Previous programs had similar results. It sounds like the only program that would meet your expectations is one that allows an illegal unit to be made legal with no requirements like meeting building codes, no restrictions and no questions asked. Just come in, identify your illegal unit, all is forgiven and walk out legal. Not going to happen.

    19. The downside of owning an undocumented unit is that it may not meet fire and other safety standards. If there is an incident, the insurance company could refuse to cover the unit and the owner could also be liable for damage to the tenant.

      If you avoid the law you should not expect to benefit from your choice.

    20. Are you suggesting there are unpleasant consequences for people who choose to operate outside the law?


      Say more.

  28. By state/fed definitions for Encinitas, very low income for a household of four people is $41,300. For low income, it's $66,100. Fewer people in a household, lower figures; more, higher.

    None of the R30 units proposed would be priced at levels people earning those incomes could afford without subsidies. Effectively, there are no subsidies.

    The point of the opposition to the HEU as proposed is it would produce high density market rate housing — a boon for developers and city tax coffers but providing no affordable housing.

  29. 8:05 PM (11/2)

    "Let's get off this state mandated 30 housing units per acre. if you lived in Northern California it would be 20 or 10 housing units per acre"

    Why do people continue to either purposely mislead or remain ignorant of the law. The required minimum density is in the state statute:

    Gov. Code 85583.2 ...

    (3) For the number of units calculated to accommodate its share of the regional housing need for lower income households pursuant to paragraph (2), a city or county shall do either of the following:

    (A) Provide an analysis demonstrating how the adopted densities accommodate this need. The analysis shall include, but is not limited to, factors such as market demand, financial feasibility, or information based on development project experience within a zone or zones that provide housing for lower income households.

    (B) The following densities shall be deemed appropriate to accommodate housing for lower income households:

    (i) For an incorporated city within a nonmetropolitan county and for a nonmetropolitan county that has a micropolitan area: sites allowing at least 15 units per acre.

    (ii) For an unincorporated area in a nonmetropolitan county not included in clause (i): sites allowing at least 10 units per acre.

    (iii) For a suburban jurisdiction: sites allowing at least 20 units per acre.

    (iv) For a jurisdiction in a metropolitan county: sites allowing at least 30 units per acre.

    Encinitas is considered to be a "jurisdiction in a metropolitan county" not suburban so a minimum of 30 units per acre is required. These rules apply statewide. Staff tried to convince HCD that the city's R-25 (25 units per acre) would accomplish this but HCD rejected it. Last year the legislature passed AB 1537 which defines Marin County as “suburban” for purposes of default housing density requirements. Although part of the Bay Area, Marin is fairly rural with no city larger than Encinitas so they can use a 20 units per acre minimum.

    1. Thanks for posting this. The law is clear. Whether it is fair or correct is immaterial, unless Encinitas want's to invest money fighting it.

      Why not accept the the law, upzone a few parcels, and move on?

    2. Because there is no end in sight. "Acceptance" is not an option.

    3. 1:22 PM

      "Because there is no end in sight. "Acceptance" is not an option."

      To the ramparts men (and women)! Don't shoot until you see the whites of their eyes. I only regret, that I have but one life to lose for my city. Better dead then red (or something like that).

      Why not crowd source a legal fund to sue the bastards.

    4. If you really want to make a statement, nothing works like self-immolation.

      Just ask a Tibetan monk.

    5. If you really want to kill the HEU before it starts, lie to residents from the start.

      Just ask our Council.

    6. I believe it's unfair for us to be classified within a metropolitan county. SD County has many different densities, including suburban. Exactly who nixed Encinitas' suburban rating? We are a "bedroom community," no doubt about that.

      I would like to see where the law breaks down these categories, specifically.

      I notice that this statutory law listing begins at Gov. Code 85583.2 (3). This begs the question of what is contained within subsections 1 and 2?

      Because parts of San Diego County are dense, does that mean that every city must be considered metropolitan? The interpretation of these codes is certainly being pushed by development interests, which unfortunately includes many Republican judges, including those at the 4th District Court of Appeals.

      Judges are not partisan on the ballots, but in practice, they are, and go along with those who contribute to their election campaigns.

      On Million Dollar Listing, I just saw where West Hollywood was able to pass a moratorium on "monster homes." Was this because of drought restrictions? It seems that drought restrictions should incentivize cities in California, in general, to encourage lower densities, and lower square footage in single family residential zones.

    7. 11:47 PM

      I'm 10:48 AM. I only posted the relevant section but you're welcomed to read the whole statute as I have. It's easy to do. Just go to click on Government Code and select Title 7 Planning and Land Use then Article 10.6 Housing Elements (it's under Chapter 3 Local Planning).

      As far as being Suburban, the statute includes its own definitions and San Diego County is definitely metropolitan.

      For comparison, using 2010 Census figures, San Diego County's population is 3,095,313 while Marin County is 252,409. Oceanside alone is 167,086. The two largest cities in Marin County, San Rafael and Novato are 57,713 and 51,904 respectively. The 2010 Census population for Encinitas is 59,518.

      Sorry you don't think judges are being fair.

  30. Jam-pack Encinitas with market-rate housing so dishwashers can commute to jobs here from San Marcos.

    Great idea! That's the solution!

    Bureaucrats are geniuses after all!

    1. 11:12,

      If that's the only depth of analysis your brain can handle, then okay.

    2. If you can't see the absurdity of the laws and proposed "solutions," then OK.

  31. I'm voting no on what ever they propose. I will vote for whatever Rancho Sante Fe and del mar are doing. Don't ho out Encinitas to look like oxnard.

    1. Good to know you will vote for a compliant HEU, certified by HCD, as Del Mar has done.

    2. The no vote will do the job no matter how much you like to play word games, 9:17.

    3. 12:09 AM

      I guess being up late clouds your thinking. Since 10:13 PM (you?) said they would do whatever Del Mar is doing, the logical inference is that you would be voting for the Encinitas HE as Del Mar approved theirs. Rancho Santa Fe is part of the county which had their housing element approved in 2013.

      9:17 AM wasn't playing word games. You evidently were guilty of sloppy thinking and/or writing.

  32. 9:17 AM
    HCD doesn't certify housing element documents. HCD makes a determination if there is substantial compliance with the state listed requirements.
    HCD doesn't certify.

    1. 9:25 AM

      Not this again. HCD is required to determine that a HE is in substantial compliance with the State statute. Even without HCD's positive determination, cities and counties can still claim that their HE still fully meets the statute requirements but they have to prove it and courts have been holding HCD's findings as the gold standard in these cases. Many refer to HCD's approval as certification even though HCD itself doesn't use that term in their notification letters. It is a distinction without a difference in any practical sense.

      What you hope to accomplish by continually stating that HCD doesn't certify escapes me. Without an HCD letter of substantial compliance Encintas will be a sitting duck for lawsuits. Besides, in the BIA lawsuit settlement we agreed to do it.

    2. 11:04 AM
      You are finally admitting that HCD doesn't certify housing elements.
      There is a distinction with a difference when city officials use the word certify to imply that to be certified is above a determination.
      What does the city hope to accomplish by repeatedly using the words certify and certification. More votes in November?
      The BIA lawsuit was "settled" by three council members who have gone over to the developer side. Kranz, Shaffer, and Bakespear are not to be trusted.

    3. 11:28 AM

      You really are a piece of work. In case you forgot, with a five member council it only takes three votes for a majority. Whether or not you agree with those three votes, the council has committed the city to the terms of the BIA settlement. It was settled not "settled". Tough luck.

      Nobody has said certification is above anything. It's merely shorthand, used by many in and out of government to denote that HCD has given you a letter saying your HE is in substantial compliance. You're trying to make something out of nothing and that dog won't hunt.

    4. Read the cover page of the Del Mar Housing Element linked above.


    5. 2:51 PM
      And Del Mar is using the word incorrectly if it says certified.

    6. 4:25,

      What do you mean by "if?"

      Are you unwilling or unable to look at source material linked by others?

    7. 4:25 PM

      Enough of this crap. Either explain the practical difference that using the term "certify" or "certifies" creates or move on. This mindless repeating of "HCD doesn't certify" accomplishes nothing if you can't back it up with why that matters. And saying that "certification" is a higher standard won't get you there.

      The key point is to get HCD to issue a letter stating that a city or county housing element is in substantial compliance with the state statute requirements. Whether you call that being certified or something else is secondary. Explain the difference and why it matters.

      I don't think you can do that. Prove me wrong.

  33. All be aware, beware, if this plan survives the vote next year, we, the public will have no future say over anything Planning wants to accept.

    Prop A will be gutted.

    There will be no public oversight if this plan survives the vote.

    Read closely and you will find a clause that is shocking in its attempts to rule over any future public participation. The Meyers and their kind will have free reign.

    Don't buy into this turd no matter how Planning tries to sell it through subterfuge.

  34. 10:47, I agree. It's a blatant in our face ruse to gut Prop A from the moment they hired someone to draw it all up. The next vote should be about ending our tax dollars being poured into their next attempt to extinguish Prop A when this one fails.

  35. Sell the current city location and make that property high density.

  36. Heads should roll over this newly presented same old, same old plan being fostered by our Planning dept. They are counting on not enough people will be paying attention to slide this by. That will not be happening this time.

    This is doomed to failure, as it stands, and they all know this is unacceptable to our community and yet, they continue to defy our clearly stated priorities per Prop A which will be rendered null and void, if this is allowed to be enacted.

    As a positive note for our community, I recently spoke to someone whose job does not allow her to attend most of the participation meetings or council sessions but she is as outraged as those of us that can show up. And her friends all feel the same way.

    It is rewarding to know there are many caring citizens out there that don't have the time to show up and still keep themselves informed as to what is really going on around here.

    Sweep, sweep, sweep Karen. Break out that broom and clear out the deadwood. We could have a great bonfire if all that deadwood that needs to be shown the door, are given notice.

    Planning has a week off now before the next round of community HEU presentations to regroup? ha. Not likely. The most disturbing aspect of the last two meetings is the mis-information that Planning members were over heard while talking to those less informed.

    When called on this, the usual response was that this plan is still in a state of flux and changes will be forthcoming. What that indicates is, this is not ready for prime time and the players we have to deal with, are not either. So much bs is being spread, I wish I had a shirt lapel recording device in play. None of the Planning staff is exempt from this criticism, as I heard the same from several different staff members trying to sell this turd.

  37. 2:09 PM

    "... defy our clearly stated priorities per Prop A ..."

    So Prop A set standard defaults and required an election to exceed those. To meet the RHNA numbers, the city is proposing a higher density for some specific parcels. The higher density exceeds the current zoning and per Prop A requires a vote. The city is proposing a vote in 2016.

    Exactly where does this defy Prop A? Or was Prop A's real intention to prevent any zoning changes ever and the citizen's right to approve was just a smokescreen.

    Yes, it is good that citizens keep themselves informed and involved even when they don't have a lot of time to do it.