Thursday, November 30, 2017

New Encinitas disenfranchised by council gerrymandering

Coast News:
New Encinitas is the big loser in the new election districts map the Encinitas City Council adopted by a 3-2 vote on Nov. 15.

The city’s largest traditional community has been completely disempowered by blatant gerrymandering. Cardiff and Leucadia are in control of the main street that runs through our community (El Camino Real). The north end of our community has been severed and given over to control by Leucadia, the south and west have been given over to control by Cardiff, and nothing in this truncated New Encinitas can be promoted without aligning with the concerns of Olivenhain.

New Encinitas, the largest community in the city, has been made powerless. It and El Camino Real have been set up to become the dumping ground for all of Encinitas’s problems. It’s as if this had been the explicit goal in the first place, which it may well have been given the recent revelation in The Coast News that the new map is not a “citizen” map, but the personal product of a coastal council member who benefits politically from the new districts.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

11/29/17 City Council meeting open thread

Please use the comments to record your observations.

Hymettus appeal rescheduled due to insufficient public notice

From the Inbox:
The November 29 Hymettus Estates’ hearing was rescheduled. Why? Because city staff decided to make up the rules as they went.

They violated city Municipal Code not once, not twice, but three times. They shortened the comments deadline to noon from 5 pm; they did this in the notification mailed out to area residents, they did this in the Coast News legal notice, and they again violated code when they mailed the hard copy notifications out after the Municipal Code deadline.

Staff was once again on a mission to do a favor for the developer by ensuring anyone wanting to submit project comments for Council to consider would be unable to do so. Residents came home from work the day before Thanksgiving to find notices in their mailboxes citing a deadline that had passed just hours before.

Pleas from residents to follow the law and properly re-notice the meeting according to code fell on deaf ears. From the person answering the main line, up to the aptly-named “Development Services Director” and Assistant City Manager, the mantra was the same: “All we can do is extend the comments period.” When asked how they would let folks know about the extension, they were unable to respond. They seemed to think they'd hit on a real solution.

Fortunately for Encinitas residents, [City Manager] Karen [Brust] can not only read code; but abide by it. When the violations were brought to her attention, she took immediate action and directed the November 29 agenda item be pulled and rescheduled. This should allow staff to learn how to tell time and count days on a calendar to avoid breaking the law again, but I wouldn’t count my chickens.

Anyone suspect that maybe staff shortened the submission deadline so they could bug out early from work the day before Thanksgiving?

Any bets on how hopping mad this developer was at once again getting so close to breaking ground, only to have it delayed by yet another staff screw up?

Any guesses as to who on staff directed this mess?

Monday, November 27, 2017

Crash on Encinitas Boulevard

Looks like somebody tried to merge into the turn lane without looking, eastbound at Quail Gardens.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tasha's Gerrymander map

Everybody saw what she did there.

North Coast Current:
Muir and other speakers at the City Council meeting expressed concern that the map might have been designed to retain current council members’ seats while making it more difficult for certain portions of the city to be represented in the future.

“Drawing a map that takes into consideration allowing each of the elected council members to keep their district is simply the definition of gerrymandering,” resident and former planning commissioner Ruben Flores told the council. “This reflects the potential future behavior of you as elected officials. I believe you’ve lost credibility.”
Encinitas Guerrilla:
Recently retired Encinitas city spokesman Jerry Mander has endorsed Tasha Boerner Horvath, a candidate for the California State Assembly District 76 seat.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Gerrymander Joe

Title of the post taken from the comments.

Del Mar Times:
Resident Steven Winters questioned why the council ultimately voted on the maps designed by Boerner Horvath, who was not previously disclosed as the author before the council's decision.

"This was a back-room deal lacking transparency... and leaving a bitter taste in the mouths of Encinitas residents," Winters said, adding he believed some council members had a “hidden agenda” regarding districting.

He added that he believed five other maps met the council's criteria, but council member Joe Mosca said those options did not work for various reasons, including the city's current five communities being "dramatically divided."
Anyone want to take a look at how many of the alternative maps gave each council member his/her own uncontested district?

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

11/15/17 City Council meeting open thread

On tonight's agenda: Tasha's incumbent protection district map.

Please use the comments to record your observations.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Jilted pot farmer wants to change ag land to housing; Kranz prefers a hotel

A flower grower who has been asking the city for permission to commercially grow marijuana in part of his greenhouses now is proposing to build the region's first "agri-hood" with higher-density housing on half of his land and agriculture on the other part.


Council members were divided over the proposal. The city's mayor called it a "very appealing" alternative to the commercial marijuana growing proposal, while Councilwoman Tasha Boerner Horvath said if Echter commits to setting aside a significant portion of the homes for low-income people, then it would be very attractive. Councilman Joe Mosca said it was at least "worth looking at."

But Councilman Mark Muir, who lives in the Encinitas Ranch region where the city's agriculturally zoned land is, said putting homes on the land that the city has previously set aside for agricultural preservation would face strong community opposition.


Councilman Tony Kranz said he might support the use of some agricultural land for housing, but not this property, given its location near the Encinitas Ranch Golf Course. Instead of homes, it ought to contain a hotel, he said.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

City staff, mayor, merchants association fall for Amazon Go hoax

Del Mar Times:
A spokesperson for Amazon has denied that an Amazon Go store is opening in Encinitas, though city representatives confirmed earlier Nov. 10 that the store was opening.


Earlier on Nov. 10, Mayor Catherine Blakespear said city officials told her the store would open next year. Irene Pyun, interim executive director of the Encinitas 101 Main Street Association, said she believed it could help bring more shoppers downtown.

"We are excited to see a 'store of the future' coming to our downtown," Pyun said. "Amazon Go will fulfill a hole in our downtown that needed a fresh start. I see it as a positive in that it will bring people from all over to experience a new way to shop."
It's unclear why city officials would confirm false information from an obviously suspicious website. As Thomas Jefferson said, don't believe everything you read on the Internet.

Website promises Amazon Go store in abandoned Whole Foods site

A website apparently published by Amazon promises the arrival of Amazon Go in Encinitas.


Amazon Go is a cashierless convenience store that is being beta-tested in an employee-only store in Seattle. Technology tracks customers as they take items off the shelves, then charges them as they walk out of the store.

Is Amazon Go really coming to Encinitas? The website could be an elaborate hoax. No announcement appears on Amazon's primary Go site. The web domain is registered at Google, a rival of Amazon in some business areas. Online listings still show the Whole Foods site for lease.

Amazon bought Whole Foods this year, after the Encinitas store had closed. If Amazon Go does come to Encinitas, it would likely use only a small fraction of the Whole Foods site, as the Go concept is 1800 square feet and the Whole Foods site is 25,000 square feet.

UPDATE: Yep, it's a hoax.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Map secretly submitted by Horvath and chosen by council gives all 4 incumbents their own districts

How convenient!
Boerner Horvath’s Citizen 16 map — which the council approved 3 to 2, with Kranz and council member Mark Muir dissenting — divides the city into four districts with an elected mayor. Representatives for districts three and four would be voted on in 2018, and districts one and two would be decided in 2020.

The map, which council expects to officially adopt Nov. 15, would put a sitting council member in each district but would pit Muir, who lives in New Encinitas, against a potential candidate in Cardiff.

Horvath drew both housing maps, didn't disclose

Good reporting here at Coast News:
Encinitas Councilwoman Tasha Boerner Horvath was asked at the Oct. 30 council meeting to list her favorite of the 22 maps from which the city would choose to decide its future council districts.

“I looked at the maps that had four districts, and two represented best our initial goals,” Boerner Horvath said. “There was a map, 16, that did that really well, and Map 15 did that really well.”

She was referring to the maps known as “Citizens Map 15” and “Citizens Map 16,” which a divided council ultimately voted as the final two maps from which they would choose for future districts.

The Coast News has learned that Boerner Horvath authored the maps.

The Coast News filed a public records request to learn the identities of the authors of the 16 maps that were submitted by citizens.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

11/8/17 City Council meeting open thread

On the agenda: housing plan.

Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Housing consultant needs more money

Coast News:
A consultant hired by Encinitas to help develop its housing element plans said between $200,000 and $300,000 more is needed to complete the work.


Dave Barquist, a consultant with Kimley-Horn and Associates, was tapped in May to help the task force craft a new housing plan that would pass muster with voters. The City Council approved a contract for $84,000 to complete the process.

But recent changes to state law have drastically changed the city’s approach to crafting the plan and require additional work from Barquist, according to a city staff report.
On the agenda at tomorrow's council meeting. Agenda report with tentative maps here.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Council down to 2 district maps under consideration

Del Mar Times:
Either of the two maps would divide Encinitas into four districts with an at-large mayor. According to the submitter's comments on the city's website, one of the maps, titled "Citizen 15," would "Keep core communities in tact [and] give all four a stake in El Camino Real." The other map, "Citizen 16," would "Keep the core of communities together, cluster neighborhoods, and give three communities responsibility for the coast, El Camino Real and the Escondido Creek San Elijo Watershed," according to the submitter.