Friday, December 31, 2021

Armed robbery, Shooting in Cardiff

Sheriff's office:
On December 19, 2021, at about 3:09 a.m., Deputies responded to the 2400 block of Newport Ave, in the city of Encinitas, to a report of a gunshot victim.

When deputies arrived, a 34-year-old White male was located with an apparent gunshot wound to his upper body. The victim stated an unknown male in a dark colored BMW or Nissan attempted to rob him of his wallet. During the robbery the victim was shot. The victim fled the scene and requested help from residents of Newport Ave. Deputies were able to follow evidence to Glen Park and located the victim's wallet on the street.

The victim was transport to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Sunshine Gardens closing

North Coast Current:
Nestled between Quail Gardens Drive and Encinitas Boulevard, Sunshine Gardens has served as more than just a nursery for the past 50 years. For the community, it has been a nurturing space where memories are made.

Though the business will be closing its 155 Quail Gardens Drive location on Dec. 31 to make way for a long-awaited housing project through the city of Encinitas, Karen England, cousin of owner Ron Martin, says that they’re open to finding a new spot to start the business’s next chapter.
Lots of history at the link.

Friday, December 24, 2021

Blakespear gets favorable redistricting

SD Rostra:

Moving to the coast, we have the new 38th Senate District. This mostly represents what we would consider outgoing Sen. Pat Bates’ district (currently the 36th). This new seat essentially moves southward along the coast, now ending just south of Mission Bay and encompassing the coast all the way up to San Clemente, before moving inland up to Mission Viejo. The current 36th district has a slight Rep registration edge (0.44%), while the new district favors the Democrats by a 4.92% registration. Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear is the notable San Diego candidate in the race. Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, who was considered a candidate for this district, is now in the new 36th District in Orange County, leaving Orange County businessman Matt Gunderson as the most notable Republican running for the seat.

Thursday, December 23, 2021

California Catch-and-Release comes to Encinitas

Coast News, December 3:
Patrick Ferncase, 28, was arrested at 2:10 a.m. on Nov. 26 at Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas, and booked at San Diego Central Jail on suspicion of a felony violation of parole.
Times of San Diego, December 22:
A man who allegedly assaulted and seriously injured a 68-year-old man Wednesday in the parking lot of a Carlsbad shopping center was behind bars on suspicion of attempted murder and elder abuse, according to police.

The alleged attack was reported at 10:22 a.m. at a shopping center at 1700 Aviara Parkway.

The victim, who was found unconscious and suffering from head injuries, was hospitalized in critical condition, according to a police department statement, which said witnesses at the scene helped police find the suspect.

Patrick Ferncase of Vista, 28, was arrested in connection with the alleged assault.

Police said there is no known relationship between Ferncase and the victim and no other suspects were being sought.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Cha-CHINGGGGG!!!

Bubbleinfo:


Economists talk about the "Great Resignation" phenomenon: people leaving the work force en masse recently. Are we all making so much on our houses that we don't have to work anymore?

Deputies cleared in shooting of armed transient

 Encinitas Advocate:

Video from the fourth incident, which hadn’t been made public previously, was released by prosecutors Friday. The incident is the fatal shooting of a man who deputies said pointed a loaded gun at them in Encinitas.

The newly released footage is brief — one minute, 18 seconds — and includes footage from one of the two deputies who shot the man as he ran from them. The first several seconds do not include audio.
The video is available at the link.

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

12/15/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Decrepit Pacific View will require millions of dollars to fix

 Union-Tribune:

The aging, former elementary school that city officials have talked for years about transforming into an arts, culture and ecology center is going to require a multimillion-dollar renovation before it can be put to use, a city-hired consultant has found.

And, there’s no money immediately available to fund even the cheapest of the four renovation options suggested by the consultant, the city manager told the Encinitas City Council during a special meeting last week.

“Right now, we don’t have a path for funding for this project,” City Manager Pamela Antil stressed.
The City Council, led by Tony Kranz and Lisa Shaffer, borrowed $10 million to buy the abandoned facility in 2014 with the hope that a volunteer group of aging hippies would fix it up for free. The fiasco won Encinitas a Golden Fleece nomination, and the property remains an eyesore more than seven years later.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

12/8/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Monday, December 6, 2021

Blakespear backs away from unpopular mileage tax proposal

KUSI:
After enormous push back from San Diego County residents, several members of the San Diego Association of Governments’ (SANDAG) board of directors said Friday they would ask SANDAG staff to provide alternatives to fund the county’s regional transportation plan which do not rely on charging county residents for every mile they drive.

The four-cents-per-mile road usage tax proposal — and two half-cent regional sales taxes proposed for 2022 and 2028 — was envisioned as a way to help fund SANDAG’s long-term regional plan, an ambitious 30-year, $160 billion proposal which could include no-cost public transit and a 200-mile, $43 billion regional rail network.

Some of the most powerful members of the SANDAG board — which weighs votes by a city’s population — said they were uncomfortable with the details of such a tax.

“At this time, the local road usage charge as a replacement for the gas tax remains highly speculative, with very few details available about how it would work or be applied in a fair way,” said Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear, chair of SANDAG’s Board of Directors. “I am concerned that the road usage charge could saddle residents with large and unsustainable cost increases for their basic transportation needs before substantial improvements in public transit have made transit a viable choice for most trips.”

The transportation plan is going before the board for final approval on Dec. 10, but the late split from some of the board’s leadership leaves it unclear how the regional transportation agency will respond. According to state law, the transportation plan needs to be adopted by year’s end and must demonstrate plans to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

December 10 is fast approaching. What tax increases will stay in the plan? The last SANDAG tax increase was rejected by voters.

Some SANDAG background:

Blakespear's husband calls mileage tax plan "paranoid conspiracy bullshit"

Friday, December 3, 2021

La Costa Canyon High School closes for threat found in girls' bathroom

Fox 5:
Students and staff at La Costa Canyon High School in Carlsbad will have an asynchronous learning day Friday after a “serious threat” was reported in a girls’ bathroom at the school, according to the district’s superintendent.

The threat was found before 1:30 p.m. Thursday in a restroom at the school at 1 Maverick Way, San Dieguito Union High School District Superintendent Cheryl James-Ward said. School officials will use the day Friday to investigate the threat and to put measures in place to help students feel safe, the superintendent said.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Federal fair housing lawsuit against city expands

Coast News:

A federal discrimination lawsuit alleging unlawful housing practices in Encinitas has expanded to include more defendants and allegations related to the controversial sales of at least two designated affordable single-family homes to wealthy investors, according to court documents filed last week.

The amended complaint, filed on Nov. 22 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California, alleges the city approved the sales of two affordable homes — 1317 Portola Road and 1412 Mackinnon Avenue — to pre-determined, non-qualified investors instead of qualified, very-low-income applicants in violation of federal and state anti-discrimination fair housing laws.

[...]

“The City of Encinitas has not only had full knowledge that these developers have been selling the designated affordable homes to private wealthy investors, blatantly discriminating against selling to these protected classes, but the City themselves worked with the developers to create the vehicle for these developers to do so the way they crafted their affordable housing regulatory agreements,” the complaint reads.

Monday, November 29, 2021

Kill the Coaster?

 Coaster Rail-to-Trail Project:

The San Diego Coaster train is at a major crossroads due to the requirement that the train be moved off a 2 mile stretch of track on the Del Mar bluffs that are unstable due to accelerating cliff erosion. The proposed rerouting of the train via a tunnel under Del Mar is a massive multibillion dollar risk that is unwarranted given the train's small ridership and the disruptive transportation technologies that are set to make the train even more obsolete in the near future.


Alternatively, a repurposing of the underutilized rail line into a greenbelt/walk/bike trail is a major sustainability opportunity that has numerous co-benefits that include clean & local commuting, healthier living, greater flexibility in dealing with future sea level rise, substantially lower costs and potential development opportunities to address critical issues like affordable housing and community reinvestment.




Monday, November 22, 2021

Encinitas Ranch gone wild!

Homes that were in the $1 million range just a few years ago are now selling well into the $3 millions.

Jim the Realtor.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

11/17/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Vicious assault at 1st Street Bar

 10 News:

Norton says according to witnesses, the man at the center of the scene at the bar — someone Brittany did not know — ran up and punched her in the face, knocking her to the ground.

“At that point, her boyfriend and their friend heard something going on, so they turned around. He was kicking her in the face,” said Norton.

Norton says the man took off, and Brittany's boyfriend ran after him, detaining him until deputies arrived.

Brittany suffered a concussion, ruptured eardrum, broken nose and fractured eye socket.

“She had to have surgery on her nose and on her orbital bone. They had to put an implant in to stabilize her eye socket,” said Norton.

Ghetto bird circling San Dieguito Academy HS

Announcement unintelligible as usual. Something about black hat, black and blue flannel.

UPDATE: Felony suspect in custody.

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Bluff collapse near F St.

From the Inbox:

The City and/or Coastal Commission will not allow property owners to erect walls or bluff skirts to slow erosion.  And they take no action to keep beach goers from sitting directly under these fragile bluff faces.  This apparently occurred during a high tide, so there was a scarcity of people on the beach.  Had it happened at a different time, there could have been casualties.  There should be a 10 to 15 foot safety zone away from the bluff edge, where lounging is not allowed.  Looking at this collapse, even that probably would have been inadequate.  The City needs to develop a safety plan now.



Sunday, November 14, 2021

New development plans for Captain Keno's, Portofino Crack House

Coast News
At first glance, a boarded-up hotel covered in graffiti along Coast Highway 101 in Encinitas has deteriorated into blight, illicit drug activity and a homeless crash pad since its closure several years ago.

But behind the scenes, an Encinitas developer has purchased Portofino Beach Inn and neighboring Captain Keno’s Restaurant to transform the properties into residential units, office spaces, a restaurant and bar, the latter of which will be named after the longtime Leucadia eatery.

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

11/10/21 City Council meeting open thread

Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, October 29, 2021

Armed robbery at Moonlight Beach

10 News:
Nick Petro sat on the Moonlight Beach sand to make a phone call Tuesday night when a man in a ski mask put a gun to his head.

The armed robbery victim says it was around 8:30 p.m. and pitch dark when he put his back to a wooden umbrella on the desolate north end of the beach. While Petro was talking to a colleague, a masked man approached him from behind, pulled out a gun, and demanded everything he had.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Second witness says cyclist at fault in $11 million city payout to council crony

Coast News:
A second eyewitness has come forward to corroborate an earlier first-hand account that a well-known cyclist was not equipped with lights or reflectors when she was struck by a vehicle three years ago in the pre-dawn hours along North Coast Highway 101 in Leucadia.

Independent statements from two onlookers and pages of legal documents indicate the city’s legal team did not present this information as a defense in a personal injury lawsuit that resulted in the largest financial settlement in Encinitas’ municipal history.

[...]

Both JD and the other witness said they were never contacted by law enforcement or attorneys representing the City of Encinitas to provide their accounts.

“I’ll testify tomorrow because I want the truth to come out,” JD said. “What kind of a kangaroo court is this where we aren’t interviewing all the witnesses?”

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

10/27/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

An artist among us

 We look forward to more from this mystery Moonlight Jester!

From the Inbox:



Saturday, October 23, 2021

City cancels Holiday Parade

A year and a half after we all got out of the water because of the Surfing Coronavirus, a new variant has emerged: the Sleigh-Borne Coronavirus:

It is the City's decision to cancel the 2021 Encinitas Holiday Parade. While the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts Department has been planning the 2021 Parade, department staff have continued to monitor recommendations and guidance from the County and the State. The State of California Department of Public Health (CDPH) "Beyond the Blueprint" guidance outlines recommendations for mega-events such as the Holiday Parade. The decision to cancel the parade is due to the strong recommendation from the state to verify fully vaccinated status or pre-entry negative test result for all attendees and to not use self-attestation as a mode of verification.
UPDATE: After public outrage, city council reverses itself and allows parade.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

10/20/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, October 15, 2021

Ghetto bird circling downtown

Saying something about a 50-year-old white male who goes by Gary or Barry or something like that, and if you see him, call 9-1-1.

That describes about half of Encinitas.

Nobody can understand the loudspeaker on the ghetto bird. Why doesn’t the Sheriff substation start a Twitter account so they can post what they’re trying to say?

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

9/13/21 City Council meeting open thread

On tonight's agenda: the 6-story Olivenhain monstrosity created by Blakespear's Measure U.


Expect Mosca and probably Kranz to vote no to try to save their seats assuming they know the fix is in on the other three votes.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Friday, October 8, 2021

Rally at Olivenhain Town Hall tomorrow against 6-story apartment complex

 Encinitas Residents for Responsible Development:

Rally on Saturday October 9: Please attend a rally to draw attention to the potential harm the proposed project would do to wildfire evacuation, traffic, the environment, and our rural community. The rally will be hosted by Encinitas RRD on Saturday October 9th from 10am to 12noon at the Olivenhain Town Hall.

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Full document of federal fair housing complaint against city and developers

Full pdf here.

We want a jury trial and there are so many people we want to see testify under oath!

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Low-income families file federal suit over city's shady insider dealing

 Coast News:

Four Encinitas residents who applied for very-low-income homes have filed a federal lawsuit this morning against the City of Encinitas, developer Woodbridge Pacific Group and several “shell” companies alleging a coordinated effort to abuse the city’s affordable home program.

The complaint alleges the city approved the sales of two affordable homes — 1317 Portola Road and 1412 Mackinnon Avenue — to pre-determined, non-qualified investors instead of qualified, very-low-income applicants in violation of federal and state anti-discrimination fair housing laws.
We're going to love the discovery process!

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

9/29/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Muirs, Shaffer leaving town?

This summer we learned that local politicians Maureen and Mark Muir were selling their Encinitas home and apparently leaving town, according to private detectives hired by the teachers' union.

Now we hear former councilwoman Lisa Shaffer has listed her home for sale, though it's unclear whether she plans to live elsewhere in the city she helped densify.


YIMBY-BIM: Yes In My Back Yard - Because I'm Moving!

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

9/22/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, September 17, 2021

Kranz considers opposing SB-9... after it's too late

A day after handily surviving the recall, Gov. Newsom signed SB-9 eliminating single-family neighborhoods.

From the Inbox:
For months, residents have been challenging and begging the council to join other California cities and take an official stance against state bills SB9 and SB10 to no avail.  The council remained steadfastly silent on these forced high-density housing bills that kill local control.  

Until now.  Kranz, a day late and untold millions in developer profits short, agendized as a council-initiated item for September 22 an "SB 9 Veto Request Letter."  Kranz's discussion will be held a week after Newsom signed his approval of the bill.  

Kranz is rumored to be planning a run for mayor in 2022 and appears to be doing so with his hands on the rear-view mirror.


Friday, September 10, 2021

Bill would allow 6 units on every lot

 Coast News:

SB 9, for example, allows any lot currently zoned R1 for a single home to be split in two, with two duplexes on each half. Add to each half a “granny” unit previously authorized by the state and you could have six units where there is now one. All without any affordability requirements.
The bill has passed the legislature and awaits Gov. Newsom's signature, which he's likely to provide after the recall is over.

Encinitas as we know it will be gone. But on the bright side, we'll all get rich selling our properties to developers and be able to move somewhere else.

UPDATE: I'm told Newsom must act (sign, veto, or pocket approve) by 9/12, two days ahead of the voting deadline. But enough mail votes will be in by then that he may feel safe allowing the bill to become law.

UPDATE 2: He gets until the day after the election. Watch out!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Did city violate rules in allowing sale of "low-income" unit to multimillionaire investor?

 Coast News commentary by Julie Graboi:

According to the June 21 Affordable Housing Agreement for Density Bonus, a qualifying developer of affordable homes is required to prove financial hardship in writing to sell to a non-qualified buyer as stipulated in paragraph 3F of the contract with the City.

A request for a copy of the written proof of developer hardship was not acknowledged, so there is no evidence that this procedure was followed.

Monday, August 30, 2021

Blakespear censors critics on Facebook in apparent violation of law

From the Inbox:
As usual, Blakespear can't be bothered with "the law" when it doesn't suit her.  Contrast the comprehensive language below, posted to her campaign Facebook page, with this: Court Rules Public Officials Can't Block Critics on Facebook | American Civil Liberties Union (aclu.org)




Sunday, August 29, 2021

Judge rules Blakespear can't overturn citizens' right to vote

From the Inbox:


"But nothing in these enumerated powers of enforcement allows state to require a jurisdiction to seek to invalidate a voter initiative, nor is there any provision for a jurisdiction to sue either private citizens or to invalidate a voter initiative."

Full ruling here.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

8/25/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Blakespear's campaign manager: Build, Build, Build!

From the Inbox:

Sabellico when running for Carlsbad Planning Commission, though not clear how publicly he stated it. Fits with Blakespear's penchant for pushing high density and calling it "the law" whether or not she complies with said law. It's become painfully obvious that her agenda aligns with Sabellico's.

Monday, August 16, 2021

Blakespear on opponents: "anti-homeless, anti-immigrant, anti-BLM"

Mayor Blakespear seems to be taking a page from her friend, developer attorney Marco Gonzalez, who famously labeled his political opponents racists.

From the Inbox:

Housing propaganda aside, the highlighted portion in the below email sent last year from Catherine Blakespear to the president of the Encinitas & North County Democratic Club shows the kind of whispering campaign in which Blakespear engaged leading up to the 2020 election. This should serve as a warning to her Senate opponents.

It was sent about the same time as Blakespear was making much of her "Clean Campaign Pledge:" Blakespear, Thunder sign Clean Campaign Pledge - The Coast News Group. Note the Dem Club president's response that signals to other key Dem Club members the story they are expected to carry.

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

8/11/21 City Council open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Cradle of filth: Coast News tours Oggi's homeless encampment

Coast News:

Homeless resident Victor “Vic” Ballance died of a suspected drug overdose on July 24 in a swath of undeveloped land just behind Oggi’s Restaurant in Encinitas, according to the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office.

After rumors of Ballance’s death, pervasive drug use and growing reports of property crimes in the area, The Coast News, accompanied by two longtime Encinitas residents, Jeff Morris and “JD,” visited the location of Ballance’s death on the morning of Aug. 9 to inspect the area.

Morris, the controversial founder of Encinitas Watchdog and North County Citizens Coalition (NC3), has been covering the homeless situation in Encinitas for years.

During the walkthrough, The Coast News found numerous dwelling areas consisting of large tents with beds scattered throughout the woodlands; countless heaping mounds of junk and stolen equipment; islands of assorted plastics, cans, glass bottles and drug paraphernalia; putrified food containers and dirty clothes — all of which was hidden beneath the sprawling tree-covered ditch reeking of urine, feces and garbage.

Monday, August 9, 2021

Barth gives council benefit of doubt on $11 million crony payout; doesn't want to know any facts

Former councilwoman Teresa Barth's newsletter on the injury payout to a personal friend of the city council:

My experience, while on city council, with these personal injury cases rarely had little to do with who was at fault but an analysis of potential costs. What are the expected legal costs of a trial, potential settlement amount (juries usually side with the victim) and is it covered by insurance? Not knowing all the specifics of this case, I am still confident that the council made a prudent decision.

The Sheriff's Department has a detailed accident reports on this case. What possible justification is there for our City Council to continue to hide this report from the public while giving away $11 million of the public's money? 

Anyone remember "Transparency and Trust?"


Wednesday, August 4, 2021

New homeless camp on North Vulcan

 From the Inbox (unedited):

On Friday, July 31, 2021 the space between the the train tracks and north Vulcan started filling up with junk, broken down vehicles and their owners. The exact location is across from Rivera Trailer Park at 699 N Vulcan Ave 92024. The invasion is spreading to south as the days go by. News residents arrived Monday around 11:45 pm with a loud reception from the occupations.

I live in the small apartment complex to the south of the Rivera. Several of us have worried about their needs. Such as restrooms. Well, it has been revealed what they plan to do. As, far as our complex they are using the privacy of the wall that surround the apartments for privacy do their. Everyday we get to pick up human waste in a play area.( never there in eight years). This is a health is and will be turned it. As for the trailer park their problems are greater. They are coming onto private property at both place and the Sherriff department acts like it is out problem; deal with it.

Just an hour ago I watch a one of the woman for the vehicles walk through our complex looking at the tot park and other things. I would have said but with delivery people who knows know people are.

They needs to be addressed before with is wall to vehicles and tents. Please send someone to look at this mess,

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Coast News questions $11 million payout to council crony

 Coast News:

Former city officials are questioning the roles of Mayor Catherine Blakespear and other members of the Encinitas City Council after the city awarded a local cycling advocate an $11 million claim settlement following a bicycle accident in Leucadia in 2018.

After suffering catastrophic injuries, Roberta Walker — well known to Blakespear and Councilmembers Tony Kranz and Kellie Shay Hinze years before they took office — received the largest claim settlement in the city’s municipal history, according to Jace Schwarm, the city’s risk department manager.

Blakespear, Kranz and the late Jody Hubbard voted 3-0 in favor of the settlement, according to the city clerk.

Hinze, a close personal friend of Walker, was the only council member to recuse herself from any meetings, votes and discussions on the matter citing a “common law conflict.”

But critics suggest the eight-figure settlement was an example of blatant cronyism, a violation of their oaths of office and possibly an illegal gift of public funds.

Make Olivenhain Carlsbad Again!

From the Inbox:

Since the topic of Community Character seems to be on everyone's mind at the moment, I wanted to share the document that the Desert Rose developers hired out and that Marco presented at Planning Commission on community character. This has a map that shows they used Carlsbad standards to squeeze more units onto an Encinitas property. Page 9 shows the map they used to make their claim of community character instead of using the General Plan.

While Desert Rose is adjacent to La Costa (Carlsbad) suburbia as the map shows, the suburbs are neither visible nor accessable by road from the rural neighborhood.

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Affordable unit sells to La Jolla LLC

From the Inbox:

Attached is the paperwork for Marco's VERY low income home in the Desert Rose/Loden Development. Who knew that a LaJolla LLC could buy it for $111, 000? Marco Gonzalez was the Desert Rose "entitlement" attorney. Note that the City Manager signed off on this when it is usually the Planning Director who approves.

City docs.


Nice deal. The rent covers the carrying cost and when the deed restriction expires you've got a property worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Was this a competitive bidding situation?

Friday, July 9, 2021

City prudes censor artist

 Coast News:


Months after San Diego artist Elena Karavodin received the exciting news that the City of Encinitas wanted to showcase her oil paintings for a public display, she was heartbroken to learn the city cited 11 of her artworks for obscenity and removed them from the exhibition.

Just before the COVID-19 pandemic, Karavodin, who was born in Los Angeles and grew up in Encinitas, was invited by Brigid Parsons, the city’s former art program assistant, to submit some examples of her work to be considered for a display in one of the city’s public buildings.

“They gave me a call back and let me know they wanted my stuff to be hung and that made me really happy,” Karavodin told The Coast News. “I had submitted some examples of my work to them and also a link to my website so that they were able to get a full feel for my style and vibe.

Thursday, July 8, 2021

Opinion: Marco’s sister used fake data to smash gig economy

 Coast News opinion:

A former union organizer turned legislator in District 80, Gonzalez has stated repeatedly that the state of California loses $7 billion a year in payroll tax revenues because of independent contractors.

As it turns out, her claim is without evidence and has no basis in fact, according to William Hamm, managing director of Berkeley Research Group’s San Francisco Bay Area office. His team helped lead a study beginning in 2019 about the fiscal impact of independent contracting in California.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

6/23/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Muirs apparently leaving town, teachers' union detective discovers

 Times of San Diego:

Amid residency doubts, a private investigator hired by a local teachers union tailed the president of the San Dieguito school board at least twice to see if she went home after board meetings.

Instead, Maureen “Mo” Muir, the two-term board member, drove to hotels, including one in San Marcos, said Duncan Brown, president of the San Dieguito Faculty Association.

Brown said union money — he wouldn’t say how much — paid for the private eye.
Real estate sites show the Muir home having been listed for sale in 2019, and having a sale pending as of last week.

The Muirs burned a lot of bridges in the community and in their Republican Party with Mark Muir's dirty tricks robocall against fellow Republican Phil Graham in support of his wife's state assembly run.

Mark Muir remains Encinitas' all-time pension champion, at $199,680 per year.

After controlling the school board for years, the teachers' union now finds itself without majority control, and is attempting a recall of newly elected trustee Michael Allman.

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

6/16/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Kranz posts Prop A court hearing audio

From the Inbox:
Despite this obvious warning posted for those logging in to court proceedings, Tony Kranz both recorded the Prop A hearing and posted them to his website. 

Calling it a "bootleg" copy, Kranz went on to offer up his personal prediction on the outcome of the case: My Weblog — Tony Kranz.




 

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

6/9/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

SANDAG targets all of Encinitas Highlands, Orpheus neighborhoods for high-density transit center

SANDAG:

The 2021 Regional Plan is a 30-year plan that considers how we will grow, where we will live, and how we will move around the region.


Mobility Hubs:

Mobility Hubs are communities with a high concentration of people, destinations, and travel choices. They offer on-demand travel options and supporting infrastructure that enhance connections to high-quality Transit Leap services while helping people make short trips around the community on Flexible Fleets. Mobility Hubs can span one, two, or a few miles based on community characteristics and are uniquely designed to fulfill a variety of travel needs while strengthening sense of place.


More:
By 2050, it is anticipated that the Mobility Hub network could serve approximately half of the region’s population and more than two-thirds of the region’s jobs.

"Supportive Land Use" (think UTC):
A healthy mix of land uses, including jobs, housing, shopping, and recreation, supports a variety of community activities.
In closely related news:
Prop A goes to court this Thursday - June 3! The mayor is asking the judge to invalidate your Prop A Right to Vote on high density housing and silence your voice.

UPDATE:


 

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Worst local roads

From the Inbox:
How about starting a string that asks people to name the worst road in Encinitas? "Worst" meaning the condition of the pavement.

Many local roads have recently been re-done, but there are still some awful roads around town. With the budget flush from huge new development and skyrocketing property values, there’s really no excuse.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Council to push forward on Streetscape with no bike lane

 Coast News:

According to city staff, if the council requested to remove some of the parking from the Streetscape plan to create more room to accommodate bike lanes in both directions, it could lead to issues with approval from the California Coastal Commission.

“I really want to be clear that we’re not directing or asking this project get derailed over this,” Mayor Catherine Blakespear said. “I know that’s the kind of thing that can make it not actually acceptable to the coastal commission and then we get into a multi-year process of negotiations.”

City staff said they would go back to look at designs in the hopes of finding a way to accommodate the bike lanes, which are of great interest to the public. Staff said they would return to the council with their findings in one week’s time.

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

5/19/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, May 14, 2021

Blakespear follows national Democrats in copying AOC's logo

From the Inbox:

New York Times:

In her three years in the national spotlight, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has become the undisputed face of unabashed progressivism. But there is another hidden-in-plain-sight legacy of her 2018 primary victory: Her campaign logo and poster have reshaped the visual branding of the left.

Candidates across the country, and even internationally, have appropriated elements of its condensed and bold typeface and its upward-sloping, dialog-box design.

Imitations and inspirations have appeared in the governor’s race in Virginia, a Senate contest in Kentucky, an elementary school race in Queens and even a campaign by a communist candidate in France.



Friday, April 30, 2021

Coast News op-ed: Blakespear shuns affordable housing in order to boost her developer campaign donors' profits

 Coast News:

Affordable housing is an ongoing issue in Encinitas. Required affordable housing percentages have recently been the focus of the Planning Commission, who voted to increase the percentage. If the percentage of affordable units per development increases, we reduce the total number of units needed for the 2021 housing cycle (see chart).

Currently, developers sprinkle a measly 15% affordable units into each density project. For every 100 housing units built, only 15 are affordable. At 15% we will need an additional 4,000 units to be built to achieve the state’s goal.

How is building 85% luxury homes and condos compassionate to our teachers, firefighters, and service workers who need housing now?

Mayor Blakespear claims 15% is the absolute max despite the fact that her own commissioned study concluded 20% was reasonable, when in fact the Goodson project (near Encinitas Boulevard and Rancho Santa Fe Road) is 20%. Developers do not pay for the increase in land value when sites are rezoned to R30 (30 units per acre), often from R1 or R3. This is a land value windfall, and in exchange they should be required to pay for more lower income housing. Other cities requiring increased affordability include Corte Madera, Los Gatos and Capitola. In Encinitas, for all the housing plan upzoning, we realize very few affordable units.

Saturday, April 24, 2021

City cleans up homeless camp after fatal overdose

Last week’s fatal overdose seems to have spurred the city into action in clearing out a homeless camp by the freeway south of Encinitas Boulevard that had been there for months.




It’s a shame someone has to die before the city does anything about the homeless. 

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Planning commission fights back after "staff" tries to sandbag affordable housing proposal

Coast News:

Staff had originally recommended the item be continued off the calendar without a set date for re-noticing. Before Thursday’s meeting, staff issued a memo revising that recommendation that the item be continued to the planning commission meeting on May 20.

The commission instead agreed to continue the item to its next meeting on May 6.

At the Thursday meeting, Roy Sapa’u, assistant director for development services for the city of Encinitas, explained the reasoning for the requested continuance was due to issues with a lack of staff bandwidth and upcoming full commission agendas.

“Unfortunately the item is being continued, solely due to staff workload,” Sapa’u said. “On April 7 the city council considered the housing element and that was a priority for staff and we focused all of our resources on ensuring we completed that effort.”

[...]

Chair Bruce Ehlers responded with strong words for staff.

“We gotta get this straight, we’re the discretionary body,” Ehlers said. “We need to have that decision within our purview and if you need extra time you need to come back and ask us.”

Ehlers also pointed out some analysis and reviews he would have liked to have seen done by the consulting firm, Keyser Marston Associates, that the commission was previously told was not possible due to funding.

“It’s interesting that when we discussed having additional work done back during deliberation we ran into a brick wall but now the brick wall has softened apparently,” Ehlers said. “And that troubles me, that troubles me a lot.”

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Death on Requeza

According to social media posts, the young man died of a drug overdose on the trail near Rancho Coastal Humane Society.

 


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Body found at Cottonwood Creek

Encinitas Advocate:
Authorities on Thursday, April 1, were investigating the death of a person whose body was found a few blocks from Moonlight State Beach, a sheriff’s lieutenant said.

It was not immediately known how the person died, but homicide investigators responded “as a precaution” based on the public discovery of the body, sheriff’s Lt. Chris Lawrence said.
Another body was found in the same area in December 2018.

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Police chase down Leucadia Boulevard

From the Inbox:



I got a good luck at the guy, he looked like a total crack head. He was singing and laughing. High as a kite.
Witnesses describe a high-speed chase westbound on Leucadia Boulevard shortly after 3pm today with a white Mustang with a blown right front tire driving on the rim followed by about 8 sheriff and Carlsbad PD cars. The photo shows the suspect pinned on the southbound on-ramp to I-5.

Friday, March 26, 2021

Sheriff hides accident report in $11 million payout to Roberta Walker

An $11 million payout of public funds to a friend of the mayor isn't a matter of public interest?

Coast News reporter Jordan Ingram on Facebook:


A rejection letter from Sheriff in response to my request of the Roberta Walker incident report.
Well, it's nice to finally have an investigative reporter in town again.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Coast News on Tashamandering scandal

 Coast News:


Some critics, including former office-holders, maintain the city’s transition from citywide to district elections was less than transparent and tainted with secret maps and gerrymandering, leading to the ouster of a conservative councilman and helping to solidify Mayor Catherine Blakespear’s leftward influence over the council.

And a recent utterance from an Encinitas representative only reignited long-smoldering embers of voter discontent over the city’s electoral changeover, leading to fresh allegations of official misconduct.

“We know why that part of the city is in District 3, it’s because Mark (Muir) lived, you know, over there, and we wanted to make sure that every council member wasn’t competing against one another,” Councilman Tony Kranz said during a Feb. 24 meeting.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

3/24/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

If you give a mouse a cookie

Blakespear's Cardiff bike obstacles don't only cause bike crashes. They also cause sand to pile up in the supposed bike zone.

So now we need a Sand Zamboni!

Facebook:

From the "You Can't Make This Up File"... Now the City has bought a mini bike-lane sweeper (pic is from the City's maintenance yard). This Dulevo 850 is an Italian-made machine - I couldn't find the cost to purchase and ship to the U.S., but the online listed price is $114,000. Next up, a specialized driver to operate this toy. If we simply built our bike lanes the safer way - without curbs and bollards, - there would be no need for specialized equipment.

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

3/17/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Blakespear announces state Senate run

Union-Tribune:

Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear announced Tuesday she plans to run for California’s 36th Senate District in 2022.

[...]

“We know that California right now is really in need of an equitable economic recovery from the pandemic,” she said. “We need bold leadership in tackling the ever growing threat of climate change. That requires action from all levels of government at all times. It’s really important that California continue to be a leader.”

Blakespear aims to offer Californians more choices for zero-emission vehicles and accessible transit and to create jobs in renewable energy. She supports making COVID-19 recovery funds available to small businesses, particularly those owned by women and people of color, and providing resources to help students make up for learning loss experienced during the pandemic.

Monday, March 15, 2021

Roundabouts for Olivenhain?

Encinitas Advocate:
The idea of installing two roundabouts along Rancho Santa Fe Road to keep heavily congested traffic moving, but not going too fast, seems like the right way to proceed, Encinitas city traffic commissioners said last week.

“I think this proposed solution is good,” Commission Chairman Brian Grover said, adding that he’s never understood why the one-mile, Olivenhain portion of the roadway has so many stop signs and roundabouts would be a nice improvement.

City Traffic Engineer Abe Bandegan presented the roundabout idea to the commissioners, asking them for their views and telling them he’s producing a report on the proposal for the City Council’s initial consideration. He stressed that the proposal is still in the early stages, with no funding yet identified and no engineering drawings done.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

City pays $11 million to bicyclist hit in hazardous "sharrow" lane

Coast News:
The City of Encinitas has agreed to pay $11 million to settle a claim with Roberta Walker, the former executive director of Cardiff 101 Main Street who filed a lawsuit against the city after she was struck by a pickup truck while cycling in Leucadia, according to the plaintiffs’ attorney Ed Susolik.

Just before sunrise on December 8, 2018, Walker, a longtime cycling advocate, was riding her bicycle in a “sharrow” lane on North Coast Highway 101 when she was hit from behind by a truck headed southbound near Phoebe Street intersection in front of the Leucadia Post Office.

Susolik, attorney at Santa Ana-based law firm Callahan & Blaine, claimed the sharrow, or shared bicycle lane, constituted a dangerous condition of public property, causing the accident, according to a written statement provided to The Coast News.

Despite wearing her helmet, Walker was critically injured and briefly unconscious when the impact of the collision threw her a significant distance, as first reported by The Coast News.
Gotta think there will be more lawsuits over the fatality at the Blakespear Bollards on Leucadia Boulevard and the dozens of crashes in the Blakespear Cycle Trap.

Monday, March 8, 2021

Reported armed robbery at Hansen's

Facebook:

ARMED ROBBERY AT HANSENS
One detained at Hansens. A runner was just detained in a garage. A 3rd one is on the lose [sic].
The ghetto bird has been circling downtown for quite a while.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

City creates Homeless Action Plan, adds permanent staff

 Coast News:

The council unanimously voted in favor of the plan, which would provide housing and healthcare assistance to vulnerable residents, and agreed to bring on a housing manager to help coordinate and manage homeless services in Encinitas.

A Point-in-Time Count conducted in January 2020 reported a total of 80 homeless people living within city boundaries, 58% of whom live without shelter on the streets, beaches, parks canyons and in vehicles. These numbers include the neighboring areas of Solana Beach and Del Mar.

Roughly half of the homeless population are transition-aged youths between 18 and 24.

Friday, February 26, 2021

Oops! Kranz says the quiet part out loud

From the Inbox:
In this clip from Wednesday's council meeting Kranz voices his concern that the majority choice, Joy Lyndes, lives too close to the D3 map border and may get redistricted out of her seat next year when the districts are redrawn. Getting over excited while pushing for his Hubbard replacement, Brett Farrow, he slips and not only indicates that the map was drawn to screw Muir, but admits that the entire council - not just Tasha - collaborated on the district maps so that "every council member wasn't competing against one another." Brown Act violation, anyone?

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

2/24/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, February 19, 2021

Anti-maskers occupy Seaside Market and Lazy Acres, harass customers and employees, steal food

 10 News:

Deputies responded to the Lazy Acres Market on Encinitas Boulevard around 6 p.m. Deputies say a group of about a dozen people were refusing to wear masks and yelling at store employees and customers. Management asked the group members to leave, but they refused. Deputies were able to get the people to leave the property.


Around 7 p.m., deputies were called to Seaside Market on San Elijo Avenue in Cardiff for another trespassing incident. Deputies say a group of people refused to wear masks and were yelling at store employees and customers. They were asked to leave but refused.

“They opened up some canisters of yogurt, some chips, just started eating it pretty blatantly throughout the store without paying for it,” Seaside Market General Manager Austin Davis, said. “(They were) throwing stuff around when we asked them not to. Again, just generally being disrespectful.”

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

2/17/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

City to dump another $1 million into abandoned school, hire social media propagandist

 Wow! They sure are flush with cash down at City Hall!

Union-Tribune:

Encinitas should pay for renovation work at the long-closed Pacific View property, hire a communications specialist and focus on two housing-related issues in the coming year, City Council members agreed last month.

[...]

The council’s fourth item on the top priorities list was improving the city’s online presence by hiring a communication specialist. Blakespear said other cities do a better job than Encinitas in regularly communicating online with residents.

“We can mobilize for things that are urgent, but we don’t have a consistent presence,” she said.

Kranz noted that the city did have a communications specialist some years ago, but her efforts sparked controversy.

Marlena Medford was hired by former city manager Gus Vina in late 2013. She established the city’s Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram accounts and won two state awards for excellence in communications, but one of her innovative communication efforts --- the use of the e-townhall system called PeakDemocracy to collect comments on a proposed citywide housing planning document --- generated huge controversy in Encinitas.
The Peak Democracy and Pacific View boondoggles were two of the most amusing episodes of city council incompetence in recent memory. Take a stroll through the archives here:
Peak Democracy

Pacific View

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Encinitas Viewpoint is back!

From the Inbox:

With so much happening in our city, the EVP team decided to come together and bring back Encinitas Viewpoint. In the upcoming months we will discuss everything Encinitas, with particular focus on all the big issues of the day.

Want to hear the latest goings on in our city, city council and our neighborhoods? Want to get involved but don't know where to start? Sign up for this Thursday's Zoom meeting and let's talk! Our regular hosts, Julie Thunder, Susan Turney, Alex Riley, Kevin McClave, Steve Meiche and Cindy Cremona will be stirring it up. All are welcome and we hope to see you there! 

When: Feb 18, 2021 06:00 PM Pacific Time

Please register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMuc-qgqz0oG9Kf_e_4OO6trsB7MNc_Xu43

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Questions? Please contact encinitasviewpoint@gmail.com

Friday, February 12, 2021

City to create permanent homeless bureaucracy

 From the Inbox:

On the 2/26 City Council meeting agenda that as usual, this council downplayed until game time.  The Homeless Action Plan will ratchet up expenses and increase homeless operations citywide:
  1. New position creation for a dedicated City Homeless Manager and Coordinator
  2. increased/newly-created temporary and permanent housing
  3. Expanded safe parking lots
  4. Additional brick and mortar operations for drug treatment/walk in clinics and day centers
This plan is far more comprehensive and extensive than was presented previously to the public.  City funding will create an entire range of services that include ADU incentives, motels, developments, shelters, parking programs, clinics, etc. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

2/10/21 City Council meeting open thread

 Please use the comments to record your observations.

Friday, February 5, 2021

City Council to create "equity committee"

 From the Inbox:

On this coming February 10 City Council Agenda: 2021-02-10 Item 12A Council Initiated Item - Formation of Equity Committee 

12A.Council initiated item from Mayor Catherine Blakespear and Councilmember Kellie Hinze regarding the creation of the Encinitas Equity Committee.

Recommended Action: The recommended action is to create an Encinitas Equity Committee; to appoint Mayor Catherine Blakespear and Councilmember Kellie Hinze as the City Council members assigned to the committee; to create an application for community member participation and do robust community outreach to ensure a diverse mix of applicants. The committee members shall recommend to the City Council for approval the members of the working group based on application.

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Prop A heads to court

From the Inbox:


 

 

 

 

Your Proposition A Right to Vote is under attack from the building industry 

– and from our own Encinitas City Council.

 

Proposition A ("Prop A"), passed by Encinitas voters in 2013, guarantees residents a vote on zoning density and building height increases. 

 

Recent Prop A votes included Measures T and U, two high-density housing plans that failed because they favored developers over residents and did not deliver on the promise of affordable housing.  Yet our Council blames Prop A, not their failed plans, as the obstacle to complying with state law. 

 

Friday, January 29, 2021

Lawsuit against city in bluff collapse can proceed

Fox 5:
A lawsuit filed against the city of Encinitas, the state and a local homeowners’ association following a deadly 2019 bluff collapse will move ahead after a recent motion to dismiss the case was denied.

The fatal bluff collapse killed three people: Encinitas residents Julie Davis, 65; her 35-year-old daughter, Anne Clave; and Davis’ 62-year-old sister, Elizabeth Charles of San Francisco. Family members announced the lawsuit last fall while also calling on legislators to support a bill aimed at preventing future coastal bluff collapses.

A judge recently sided with the family after a motion was filed to dismiss the case on the grounds of “natural condition immunity.”

“The natural condition immunity says that if a city or a state only opens up access to a public space they’re not going to be subject to suit,” said Bibi Fell, one of the attorneys for the Davis family. “The difference here is that the city and the state didn’t just open up a natural space.”

Fell argues the city changed, developed and built on the land, decisions she says made the area less safe.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

You ain't seen crazy yet

VOSD:

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, who’d been running for secretary of state for more than a year, announced this week she’ll seek re-election to the Assembly in 2022. “I’ve decided I’ve been way too cautious, too filtered and too guarded for the past 7 years,” she wrote on Twitter. Gonzalez is already one of the most provocative and unguarded lawmakers in California politics, so it’s hard to even picture what a less filtered, more aggressive posture might look like for her.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Cardiff development appeal tomorrow night

From the Inbox:

Dear Encinitas Undercover: 

Tomorrow night (1/20/21) at 6 p.m., the City Council will determine whether Cardiff will remain small and beachy.

Click the Link to access the City Council Agenda for tomorrow night's 6 pm meeting via Zoom showing Item 10 (Newcastle Place project appeal).


The proposed Newcastle Place project is significantly taller than the Town Center (West), the adjacent New Balance building (North), the existing 1-story old post office (to be demolished), the existing 2-story Dental building (to be demolished) and the Library (South).



Thursday, January 14, 2021

Councilwoman Hubbard resigns

 U-T:

Encinitas Councilwoman Jody Hubbard, who has represented the Cardiff region for two years, announced Wednesday night that she was resigning “effective immediately” because her lung cancer has spread.

We hope Hubbard recovers and wish her the best.

Mayor Blakespear is expected to appoint another acolyte rather than allowing a vote on a replacement.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Priorities

 From the Inbox:

Source: https://www.sandag.org/uploads/projectid/projectid_604_28513.pdf

2021 SANDAG Regional Transportation Improvement Program

Figures are 2014 dollars.

Cardiff Coastal Rail Trail construction, Chesterfield to G Street: $6,885,000

Projected Coastal Rail Trail construction, G Street to Leucadia Boulevard: $4,763,000

Railroad grade separation at Leucadia Boulevard ranks 25 of 27 regional projects considered. Projected cost is $93 million. Trains per day: 51; traffic per day: 34,000.