Sunday, April 30, 2006

House of Worship or U Store It?

NCT link
Why does the new proposed Faith Community Church by the Sea look like an outlet mall or a self storage?

It used to be that a local church would be interesting and make up for the mediocre architecture in a town but I guess no more. Now even our churches look like the Alberston's shopping plaza. It's a shame that such extreme homogenization has reached our spiritual centers.

I like the Lutheran church off Balour Drive, it has some dynamic qualities.

The funky but not funky enough to save from the bulldozer Lutheran church on Santa Fe (by the new roundabout) has an interesting stained glass interior.

I don't expect any new churches to be as outlandish as the Self Realization Fellowship. The only reason this iconic church really works is it's location. The yuppie haters probably don't want to admit this but the SRF really is the heart and soul of Encinitas that makes us unique from other beach towns.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Spending, Trimming or Cutting Back

Union Tribune story by Angela Lau

Spending, trimming, borrowing possible

ENCINITAS – The city will have to decide which is the lesser of three evils – trimming capital projects, borrowing money or spending all of its savings – when it finishes its budget for the coming fiscal year.

The City Council will hold budget workshops tonight and tomorrow night to review the city's five-year economic forecast. The budget for the 2006-07 fiscal year begins July 1.

Spending time with your family is better than spending the entire city budget on an overdesigned library that if done right would cost 10 million instead of 20 million.

Trimming on the nose is better than trimming city services.
Cutting back on your surfboard is also better than cutting back on city services.
I guess we'll be sending Kerry Miller up to Oceanside to one of those sleazy paycheck advance places so we can build some new firestations.

Or, let's send the city council to the local Indian casinos with the entire city budget. You never know, they might get lucky!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Barratt Springs Into Action

After months of doing nothing on the building site (eastern project) suddenly Barratt American decided to restart work two days after Leucadia Cares announced their lawsuit
It kinda sucks for Leucadia Cares, but it turns out that if Barratt begins construction on the houses it gets even harder for a judge to make them follow the law. That is why they are now in a rush to get construction underway. Their action might be taken as a sign that they know they are going to lose the lawsuit.

Remember, in life it is always easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

In other news Barratt American's CEO Michael D. Pattinson was named Business Person of the Year by the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce. link

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Those Pesky Voters And Their Ample Grist

The computer internet supplying information to voters is really ganking up the game plan for the powers that be.

North County Times plucky reporter Adam Kaye files this story click me

This funky little blog gets some press:

Virtual venue
The lawsuit has provided ample grist for the Keep Leucadia Funky blog, a site launched by a surfboard builder and longtime resident of the beach community, J.P. St. Pierre.

He said he figured the site would never get more than 20 visits. Traffic to the site grew heavy, however, during the Prop. A and Prop. C elections, he said.

He added that the site has sparked political interest among younger, Internet-savvy residents who now are voting when they might not have before.

"It seems almost like a big group of people are hitting the age when they start caring about these kinds of things," St. Pierre said.

Let's see..."Encinitas city councilman Dan Dalagher isn't the sharpest tool in the shed." Hee Hee, that's comedy gold!

I was shocked when I checked my stats for this site. I hadn't taken a look at my stat counter in a long time and when I saw this site was logging 4,000 hits a month my jaw dropped. I guess once word gets out news travels fast. I averaged 2,000 hits a month in 2005 but some reason the traffic has doubled in 2006.

That is sweet my peeps. Thanks for visiting.

It's troublesome news for the redneck establishment that has taken over the city. My peer group is now in their 30's and own property and have kids. We are no longer apathetic slackers. We use the internet and we vote.

I guess our parents did a good job raising us afterall eh?

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Beacon's Beach Poisoned?

The Beacon's Beach parking lot is a popular place for locals to hang out and gossip about current events. The big talk lately has been concerns about the blue poison pellets the city spread across the cliff to kill off the squirrel population.

Now the squirrels can really get out of control, especially during spring time. Seemingly hundreds of them, the squirrels burrow throughout the cliff and under the parking lot which isn't good. Sometimes a few bold squirrels will creep out onto the sand and steal your lunch out of your backpack while you are out surfing if you don't zip it up all the way. Other than that they are pretty cute and can be entertaining. A few local birds of prey make a nice living feeding off the unsuspecting squirrels. That is always rad to see, better than the Discovery Channel.

Now, before you write me off as a tree hugging hippie left wing freak hear me out on this. It's not good to poison the beach where you hang out and play with your kids. The recent rains are washing the poison pellets onto the beach. There is poison in the sand where your kids dig and play and where you lay out your blanket and picnic.

If the birds of prey eat poisoned squirrels they may die. The city may be violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

I have heard from several sources that a housecat belonging to a woman who lives across from the Beacon's parking lot has died. I haven't spoken to this woman personally and if anyone knows her encourage her to take her cat to the vet and have the cause of death confirmed. (Did the cat ingest a pellet or kill and eat a poisoned squirrel?)

People are saying that the city used rat poison at Beacon's. As I understand it this is against state law. You cannot just use rat poison to kill squirrels if it endangers, human, pets or wildlife.

Next time you are checking the surf at Beacon's look for small blue pellets, about 1/2 inch in length and 1/8 inch in diameter. They are cylindrical in shape. Witnesses saw them being tossed from the parking lot and on bushy patches.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Grouches, Codes, Lawsuits and the Big Creep

Read plucky North County Times reporter Adam Kaye's story click me.

Why does Michael D. Pattinson, president of Barratt American and occasional NCT columnist, hate grading permits so much?

Pattinson once wrote that a man who hopped on a tractor and graded his property without a grading permit was a comparable hero to civil right defender Rosa Parks. click

Pattinson also writes that any citizen who opposes any developers grandiose plans is merely a grouch. See Michael D. Pattinson Hates You & NCT link

Never mind that these big multi-million dollar corporate developers are dramatically changing the face of your sleepy neighborhood, you should lump it and like. Afterall, this is the new America where resistance and ethics and morals are frowned upon.

Barratt American
is a huge development company that reported record profits in 2005. Pattinson gets a lot of press talking about how his childhood experiences influenced his goals of bringing affordable housing to the people. Unfortunately he doesn't apply this thinking to California. Most of Barratt's homes sell in the million dollar range. Pattinson is quick to blame fees and opposition lawsuits (Pattinson/Barratt has sued the city of Encinitas in the past but I guess those lawsuits are okay).

It's always great when I get to use this Nantucket lobster man artwork.

There are lots of ins and outs to this story. The North County Times publishes a column twice a month written by Pattinson that are really propaganda pieces for the building industry (and often unintentionally hilarious. I recommend reading them. They are a laugh riot much like that train wreck Bill O'Reilly is fun to watch on teevee because he is such a tool).

Encinitas councilman Jerome Stocks got busted awhile back for taking illegal campaign contributions from Barratt. Pattinson was a big backer of Prop A the Ecke rezone which was crushed at the polls. The fill dirt for the Nantucket project came from that strange piece of land off La Costa Ave (it has the chain link fence around it) that was traded by the city to a guy named Robert Barrelmann for some land off Leucadia Blvd. that he then attempted to have it rezoned for a commercial building.

It just goes on and on man.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Keep Track of Your Hood

click page to enlarge, sorry if it is hard to read, blogspot has it's size limitations.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Where's My Money Man?

Refund for 19,000 will be discussed
By Angela Lau

April 15, 2006

ENCINITAS – The failed $5-a-month clean-water fee on January's mail-in ballot cost the city $128,000, money that critics say could have been better spent on cash-strapped capital projects.

City officials released this week an accounting of the election, which had been demanded by opponents of the measure. The report will be considered by the City Council on Wednesday.

Council members also are expected to decide then how to refund $1.62 million in clean-water fees collected from 19,000 property owners without their approval.

The money was charged through their trash bills from April 1, 2004, to June 30, 2005. Each household is due an $85 refund.

read the rest of the story

Where's the money?

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Mayor Guerin Totally Upbeat

NCT link

*Note-I have to get my local news from the North County Times website because despite the fact that they have withdrawn $10 from my bank account I have never once received a paper on my doorstep.

Encinitas mayor upbeat in State of the City address

By: ADAM KAYE - Staff Writer

ENCINITAS ---- Mayor Christy Guerin delivered an upbeat State of the City address Monday, emphasizing the positive, downplaying the negative and welcoming an audience of 250 to learn more about the city's finances.

"We invite all of our citizens to take a look at our budget, talk to our staff and council members, so that we can answer any questions or concerns that you may have," she said. "It's your dollars, and we are more than happy to share the information."

Guerin shared her concern that more than ever, city leaders must prioritize which capital projects to fund, because construction materials are increasingly expensive, she said.

"There have been challenges this past year and the year ahead of us will include them also, mostly financial challenges," the 22-year resident told her audience at the Encinitas Community and Senior Center.

In 18 months, the long-awaited Encinitas Community Library will open, Guerin said. She recounted the council's scramble to fill a $6.4 million funding gap in the $20 million project.

City officials have started to approve plans to replace Encinitas' three oldest fire stations, Guerin said. Her speech did not reveal her previously stated concerns that a $7 million budget probably won't be enough to finish the job.

She celebrated the completion of designs for four pedestrian crossings over the railroad. "In the next several years the council will be working hard to acquire funding to construct those crossings," she said. How much the crossings will cost, however, and when the first pedestrian will use one, is anyone's guess.

By the end of 2006, the city will respond to environmental concerns and certify an environmental impact study for the Hall property park, Guerin said. The park would be built as money becomes available, starting with ball fields.

"We are committed to moving as quickly as possible to get this park built," she said.

Toward the middle of her speech, Guerin addressed the recent defeat of a ballot measure that had asked property owners whether they would support a $5-per-month fee to help pay for the city's clean water program.

The loss of Proposition C "will be a continuing fiscal challenge as costs to maintain this program grow," Guerin said, "but I have the greatest confidence in both our staff and this council team to accept the challenge."

Despite any looming challenges, 92 percent of participants in a city-commissioned survey indicated that Encinitas is a "good to excellent place to live," she said. She cited the $10,000 survey of 300 residents later in her speech, reporting that 87 percent of respondents were "satisfied to very satisfied" with city services.

Monday, April 10, 2006

A Merchant Parking Solution?

As the population grows and downtown Encinitas becomes more popular the parking gets tighter. Parking meters are not an option because those just aggravate people and make the downtown experience miserable. It has been suggested that merchants and their employees park in the upper Moonlight beach parking lot and that is a good idea but how about adding the option of parking in the city hall parking lot?

The city hall parking lot has a sweeping view of lovely downtown Encinitas and always has plenty of empty spaces.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Renters Holding Us Back? Doubtful.

Someone posted this comment the other day under the Roundabout topic,

You can sure tell who is a property owner and who is a renter by the comments they make. So I guess if you are a renter you don't want the city improved because that might make it a nicer place to live and perhaps raise your rent.

I have to say this is one of the funniest comments ever posted on this blog.

Was it renters who fought the RDA and declaring Leucadia blighted? No, it was property owners.

Was it renters who came out in mass to vote down Prop A? No, it was property owners.

Was it renters who voted down Prop C? No, renters couldn't even vote on that one.

It is property owners, and even more specifically, home owners who are settled here for the long haul that are getting involved in local politics.

The yuppie family who buys or builds a McMansion and then flips it 4 years later and moves away doesn't really care what happens around here.

It's the people who have made a commitment to living here and being part of the community who are voting. It is they who will feel the longterm effects of the financial decisions this city council makes.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Knock Knock


The people of Encinitas are incredibly fortunate to live in our coastal community with an ideal climate, clean beaches and friendly neighbors. We should all consider it an obligation to be active citizens to help insure that our community retains the characters that attracted each of us to this corner of paradise.

Part of our good fortune is that we live in a democracy where we have the opportunity to choose our leaders to represent our interests and our wishes as our community experiences the inevitable changes associated with growth and prosperity. We have the opportunity to periodically evaluate our city council members and decide if they are in touch with the citizens that they serve, or if there is an alternative that better represents what we are looking for. That opportunity will again knock in November of this year, just 7 months from now. We had better get started!

In evaluating an incumbent or a new candidate, I would encourage everyone to take a look back at the last few years. Ask each candidate what their position was on important issues that have affected Encinitas in either a positive or negative way. Let’s look at just a few of them to stimulate the debate.

- According to the North County Times, in a May 2005 article, approximately 90% of the Encinitas general fund is used for staff salaries, benefits and contracts. The city of San Diego got into deep trouble when that figure for them reached 80%. Is this trend acceptable?

- Proposition A, although strongly supported and endorsed by some on our existing council was rejected by the people with an overwhelming majority of 66%. Although the council asked us for an advisory vote, at least one of them served on the YES on A committee and has since taken large campaign contributions from the people who would have benefited from its passage.

- Proposition C. The council first voted for an illegal tax, then hired three consultants at taxpayer expense to convince the voters that paying twice for the same service would be a good thing. 61% of us disagreed. Now they are interviewing yet another consultant to help them figure out who paid the illegal tax and is owed a refund.

- The Hall property is an eyesore with wonderful possibility. Will our children have the opportunity to enjoy the parks potential benefits, or will they talk to their kids about what it could have been?

Please get involved! You may have issues that need the attention and debate of local elected leaders that represent your point of view, your interests, and your neighborhood. Opportunity will knock in November and your vote will make a difference.