Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Final Week, Election Looms Ahead

There are a mere 7 days until the election, what do you think?

Susan Myers, data entry
My boyfriend broke up with me on election day two years ago so instead of voting I spend the day in my bedroom sobbing. Busby reminds me of my mom though.

Tim and Bud, unemployed
Bud always barks at Mexicans so I'm voting for Bilbray.

Bob Johnson, engineer
My choices in Encinitas include a plumber and a lawnmower blade sharpener? And they want to raise taxes and bulldoze Leucadia? You are fucking with me right?

Helen Frisket, retired school teacher
Since there are no black guys running I'm voting for any and all female candidates. The non-lesbians anyway.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Tom Brown's Halloween themed mailer

Got home from work and as usual the mailbox is stuffed full of glossy political mailers from Bilbray, Busby and Ah-nold and I was about to violently chuck them all in the trash when I saw this hilarious one from Encinitas city council candidate Thomas Brown.

click images for large view.

Signs of Desperation

There have been reports all over town about the mysterious disappearance of Teresa Barth signs from people's yards.

If you are a full grown adult with a house and mortgage and you drive around in the middle of the night plucking political signs then you are a loser and need to rethink your life.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Dalager Changes Halloween to Paul Ecke Appreciation Eve.

Following his success of changing the Encinitas Holiday Parade to Encinitas Christmas Parade Dan Dalager announced this morning that he is changing Halloween into Paul Ecke Appreciation Eve.

Also in the change, costumed children will be required to exclaim "Dick Cheney or Brian Bilbray" instead of the usual "trick or treat" when asking for candy.

"Halloween is a filthy pagan event," said Dalager in a press conference. "When I was kid on Halloween I wore my boyscout uniform and checked the other kids for reflective clothing and flashlights."

On a roll, Dalager announced plans to change Thanksgiving into Poinsettiagiving, New Year's Eve into Stay Home And Watch Television Like A Good Citizen Eve and Valentine's Day into 2 Blades Sharpened for the Price of 1 Day.

Anyone know where I can get these puppies tuned up?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

More Dirty Tricks, a must read

The following is lengthy and detailed but sheds light on some serious stuff that affects your wallet:

Hi Friends,

I'm writing to you today to let you know the outcome of a project that we set in motion late last year concerning what we saw as exorbitant Sewer Service Charges on our Property Tax Bills. By way of background, we bought our home in 1999. We were billed the following Sewer Service Charges for the subsequent years we lived on Crest Drive: 2000 - $766.96; 2001 - $766.96; 2002 - $766.96; 2003 - $646.46; 2004 - $1,210.54; 2005 - $1,442.08.

You'll notice there was a substantial increase in 2004 (nearly double the charge for the previous year). When we received our Tax Bill in 2005 I got a little concerned about how high it had become. So I inquired about why our Sewer Service Charges had escalated so dramatically with no corresponding change in the way we used water or the amount we sent to the sewers.

We were informed that the drastic change was the result of a sewer rate increase which had been approved by the City Council. In addition, when we asked why our neighbors across the street were paying less than $200 per year we were told they were in a different sewer service district than we were and they were not subject to the rate increase.

Well, after I had seen the way City Council had tried to pass Props A and C by presenting them as something they decidedly were not, I was very skeptical of the answers I was getting about the Sewer Service Charges. One bit of useful advice I received and acted upon was to install a water sub-meter to measure the actual amount of water we were using inside of our house that eventually found its way into the sewers and, for which, we were obliged to pay a service charge. (In case you aren't aware, the water we use to irrigate our lawns and gardens and fill our swimming pool and spas does not go into the sewer so is not subject to the Sewer Service Charge.)

Prior to installing the sub-meter, like most of you, our Sewer Service Charge was based on the total amount of water we used during the year. To this amount, the Sewer Department applied a factor that they claim results in a representative reduction in the total amount of water in an attempt to reflect the amount that finds its way into the sewer and for which we should pay a Sewer Service Charge. Many of you are currently being billed in the same manner for your sewer access. Those of you who live along Crest and Wotan Drives (and parts west) and north of Melba Drive, are being drastically overcharged through this flawed formula. And to be clear, it is the formula, not the rates that are causing the problem!

To illustrate, please refer to the amounts of our Sewer Service Charges for previous years that I listed above. Then consider that after installing an $850 sub-meter, our Sewer Service Charge for 2006 dropped to $228.82 based on our ACTUAL output to the sewer system. You can see from our example that the City of Encinitas has, in effect, been collecting an ILLEGAL tax from a group of the City's residents and has been DISCRIMINATING against those who live in two of the City's three sewer districts while charging substantially lower Sewer Service Charges in the remaining district.

And the only relief the City has offered is to inform us that we can install a sub-meter at our own expense (which is pretty substantial -- $850 in our case). In fact, we are all free to install sub-meters to preserve us from the damaging effects of this illegal tax. But we believe the City is counting on the fact that the substantial expense of installing a sub-meter will deter the majority of residents from considering installing one. And so, they will go on charging and collecting this unfair, illegal and discriminatory tax unless we do something to stop them.

I hope you are as outraged as we are at what you have just learned! The entirety of Cardiff-by-the-Sea is affected by this unfair and discriminatory rate formula as is a great deal of the rest of Encinitas so you have plenty of company. I have to do some more research, but if this can be shown to be as I see it to be -- an illegal tax -- then perhaps we could receive some help from the Howard Jarvis Homeowners Association. I will be looking into this further.

But in the meantime, there is something we can all do together that will have a more immediate effect...

Keeping in mind that the current City Council members approved this flawed rate formula and refuse to listen to complaints that it is flawed and considering that they remain unmotivated to do anything about it, I propose we elect fresh faces to replace those who are coming up for re-election. I would make sure the new candidates understand the scope and severity of this problem and determine where they stand on the matter before you place your vote next month.

We should look for a fair-minded person who would not tolerate such a flagrant abuse of government power if it was within her ability to do something about it. I hope you will educate yourselves about the candidates before you place your votes in November. The Union-Tribune has endorsed Dan Dalager and a friend of his named Long under the curious, confusing and misleading assessment that Encinitas is "relatively free of financial problems and political scandals". I guess if you compare the Cities of Encinitas and San Diego, you could kind of come to that conclusion. But the preponderance of the local news reporting (even by the Union Tribune itself) does a poor job of leading a rational mind to the same result.

So, this is the bottom line... If you live in one of the two sewer districts that was subject to a rate increase that was approved in 2004, then you are probably paying as much as 6 or 7 times what you should be paying for Sewer Service Charges. I hope you will organize an effort to fix the City Council's oversight in as expedient a manner as possible and through all channels that are open to you.

Best regards,

Bob Evermore


and the now classic

Brown not to blame for SFA mixup

Brown not to blame for SFA mixup

By: CARLOS COTA - Commentary:

A recently published column ("Brown's record less than meets the eye," Oct. 20) regarding the military service of Thomas Brown seems to paint the Encinitas City Council candidate in a poor light. That column, however, does not address the whole story and seems to have the end effect of leaving the reader with a skewed impression of Mr. Brown's honesty. As vice president of the local chapter of the Special Forces Association, I feel compelled to set the record straight by making the public aware of the full story.

The original column written by J. Stryker Meyer refers to statements Mr. Brown printed in various campaign materials that claim he is a member of the Special Forces Association. Meyer's research, however, suggests that Brown's claims to membership in the SFA are in fact false. The original article left me with the impression that Brown's military service was being called into question, though Meyer is careful to not actually state that contention.

I would like the record to show that Thomas Brown did submit his application for local level membership in the SFA to me prior to printing the statements in his campaign materials. During the course of our conversation that day, however, I am afraid I may have given Mr. Brown the false impression that his application would have been fully processed and approved by the time his campaign materials were printed. This simple misunderstanding resulted in me inadvertently misleading him. I have forwarded Mr. Brown's application through the proper channels and cannot say for certain as to when or if his application will be approved. Yet I would like to clarify that a cursory examination of his military history shows an impeccable service record. Mr. Brown is most certainly not making false claims regarding his service to our country, nor should he or any of our veterans and active personnel be considered anything less than heroic for the liberties they defend.

-- Retired Sgt. Maj. Carlos Cota of the U.S. Army Special Forces lives in Carlsbad and is vice president of the Special Forces Association's Roger Donlon MOH chapter No. 75 in San Diego County.

J. Stryker Meyer's previous hit piece on Brown.

Did anyone see J. Stryker Meyer having lunch with Jack Orr previous to the column?

"A little bit of communication would have gone a long way,"

Operation Homecoming donations total $33K

By: ADAM KAYE - Staff Writer

---- The city received $33,000 in donations to offset $18,000 it paid to produce the Operation Homecoming at Encinitas book-reading event last month, Finance Director Jennifer Smith told the City Council on Wednesday.

The excess donations ---- $15,000 ---- will be given to the San Diego Nice Guys Victory Fund, a charity that supports deployed and wounded troops and their families, Smith said.

On Sept. 22, an estimated 850 people attended the event at the Encinitas Community and Senior Center, where troops read passages from their submissions to "Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families."

After Smith's brief report, some council members tore into the watchdogs and one of their colleagues who had questioned the expenditures.

Councilman Dan Dalager, who is credited with conceiving the national reading tour to accompany the recently published anthology of war stories, saved his sharpest words for the North County Times.

On Saturday, the newspaper reported nearly $20,000 in expenditures discovered on city warrants lists by taxpayer advocates Bob Bonde and Donna Westbrook.

"That is some of the most irresponsible reporting I've ever seen," Dalager said Wednesday. Later, he added, "We've got a press that's simply looking to do what's not right, what's not a story."

Dalager ---- with support from the Downtown Encinitas MainStreet Association, Encinitas Chamber of Commerce and the 101 Artists Colony ---- spent nearly a year preparing a proposal and pressuring the National Endowment for Arts to make Encinitas one of its first stops on the tour.

In the weeks leading up to the highly publicized event, Dalager said the city would spend "maybe $5" to bring it to Encinitas, but would earn much more than that in publicity and prestige.

In Saturday's newspaper story, Councilwoman Maggie Houlihan said she had understood the event would come at no cost to the city.

"I think your comments (in the story) were very irresponsible," Mayor Christy Guerin told Houlihan at Wednesday's meeting."If the paper's irresponsible, and it's their job to find something and explain something, no comment is appropriate."

Houlihan said she did not know a fund existed to cover the city's payments to vendors.

"A little bit of communication would have gone a long way," Houlihan said. "There wasn't information given to me in advance that I saw about the paying arrangement."

Operation Homecoming expenses appearing on the Sept. 27, Oct. 18 and Wednesday's warrants lists total $19,633. Smith's report, however, shows $18,062 in costs. The difference between the amounts reported remained unclear Wednesday, but city officials have said the event will cost the city little if anything.

The report shows corporate and private donations from: Cox Communications Inc. ($2,500); EDCO Recycling & Waste Collection Services ($3,000); Barratt American Inc. ($5,000); San Diego Gas & Electric Co. ($5,000); Gerald and Robin Parsky ($3,000); anonymous ($11,000); Borders Inc. book sales ($617); National Endowment for the Arts reimbursements ($1,318); staff donations ($2); Victory Fund offering ($1,624).

Councilman Jerome Stocks praised Dalager and said he would have been proud to direct public funds toward the event.

Councilman James Bond said he, too, wanted a clarification of expenditures, and added, "It would be nice if the folks who were concerned about that to say they apologize."

If Dan Dalager had more patience and was less arrogant he could have easily supplied more information to his fellow council members, the public and the press. His attitude that you can never, ever challenge his actions and choices is making him a loose cannon. He still owes city founder Bob Bonde an apology for calling him a "whiner". Bob Bonde served this country as a marine in Korea, how is that for irony?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Must Be Nice

Doug Long has said at the last two candidate forums that Leucadian taxpayers should "volunteer" to build the sidewalks on coast highway Leucadia. Interesting that his plumbing business on Second street has not one but two gleaming sidewalks.

Can you imagine a city council candidate saying that any other community in Encinitas should build their own sidewalks? This is typical red headed stepchild treatment for Leucadia.

Leucadians should avoid voting for Doug Long, he doesn't respect your tax contributions.

Long also seems to think that the state coastal commission is impending our sidewalk process, Citing the council's recent approval of $300,000 to $400,000 to build sidewalks in Leucadia, Long said, "This is something as a volunteer I would have taken on myself. I'd say put the sidewalks in and blow the (state) Coastal Commission off."

The Coastal Commission does not have regulatory oversight of the Leucadia sidewalk plan, nor has it registered formal opposition to the proposal.

Too many bong hits for Long?

My impressions of the last candidate forum

I attended the bulk of last night's candidate forum at the community center. There was a decent crowd , around 200 which is good considering that game 3 of the World Series was starting (I made my wife text message me inning updates).

I got there right at 6 o'clock so I furiously scribbled some burning questions on note cards and handed them in at the last minute. It's a shame none of my questions were asked.

The crowd was full of recognizable faces that you see at all the city council meetings and community events. All the players, wannabees, pundits, hacks, and lobbyist...you know, nerds. I sat as far away from this "in" crowd as possible.

The forum moderator was a cute perky girl with a tinny microphone that kept giving off screechy feedback. Here is a tip, never point the mic at the amp.

Here is my 2 minute review and impressions of the candidates:

Doug Long: He seems like your typical old Encinitas beach dog complete with the old school mustache and a nice enough man. His appeal for me ended there. He seemed unprepared and lacked confidence in his opinions. He stammered a bit and had a deer in the headlights look in front of a crowd of people. Now, public speaking is one of the hardest things to do in the world so I have sympathy but I don't see him doing well in a council meeting that isn't as congenial as last night's forum. I came to the realization that Doug Long doesn't want to win and he is only running because somebody talked him into it. I relate to that one.

Dan Dalager: Dan's usual witty humor and charms were falling flat last night in a room full of pissed off taxpayers who have run out of patience. Dan easily switched back and forth from easy breezy "Hey, I'm just your local tool guy, you all know me." to the arrogant "I'm the smartest guy in this town and it's my way or the highway." Dalager and Long both came off like a couple of old stoner buddies trying to give a group report in the front of the class. I had to look away at the floor because it was a little hard to watch.

Thomas Brown: He was the most professional looking man up there which added to the goofy nature of Long and Dalager. Brown definitely has a corporate vibe to him and would probably be really good at getting stuff done. But what stuff would that be? I was unclear if he was for or against declaring Leucadia "blighted". This is my greatest concern. Brown obviously knows every developer in north county, is this an asset or does it compromise his position? In a lot of ways Brown struck me as more of a Carlsbad guy who somehow ended up living in Encinitas. Brown is clearly the superior candidate as far as the men go.

Teresa Barth: I had a letter published in the Coast News last week giving Teresa glowing support. After last night I feel so good about writing that letter. Teresa is clearly the most informed candidate on the real concrete issues that face our town. She is dignified and sharp as a tack. She has a very valuable asset, she has a keen radar for bullshit. Judging from the applause she received last night from the crowd this town is in a pressure cooker and Teresa could be the release valve. She is not only the obvious vote I think she has the potential to be the best city councilperson this town as ever seen.

Paul "Pablo" Martens: The mysterious "Pablo" was welcome comedy relief for the most part. At times his long winded babbling was painful and a women behind me kept letting our long frustrated sighs as Pablo obviously doesn't have a clue about our local issues or any real grasp of the political structure of this town. He did have some great one liners though. His "I drink the tap water." line made me laugh out loud and it also explained a lot. Pablo still thinks he is running for the 50th district and not for Encinitas city council.

My recommendation: If you want to try the bullet voting method then vote only for Teresa Barth with confidence, she is great.

If you must vote for 2 then add Thomas Brown because at least he seems responsible enough not to jack us out of our tax money. I also don't see Brown ever calling our city founder Bob Bonde a "whiner" like Dalager did.

I scrammed out there at 8 o'clock, did I miss anything good?

NCT.com piece on the forum: Encinitas candidates meet at final forum; 5 competing for two open seats

Monday, October 23, 2006

Lunch Coupons for the Mayor

“This job is very rewarding in many ways,” Mayor Christy Guerin said. “I can think of a thousand reasons” to serve, and pay isn't one of them, she said.

“You do it because you love the city,” she said.

Guerin said people who talk to her are amazed that council members earn so little. “It barely pays for what we spend on gas and lunches,” she said.

from the UT link

I clipped some lunch coupons for the mayor and mailed them off to city hall today. Bon apetite!

previous blog post on this issue

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Glorified Pot Hole Fillers Party Hardy With Your Tax Dollars

Encinitas gave Japanese a $12,000 welcome

ADAM KAYE does a little digging to see how our tax money is getting spent these days. Keep in mind this is the same city council that keeps trying sneaky ways to raise fees and taxes and just took out a $20 million bond debt. Italic quotes are excerpts from article.

When a sister city delegation from Amakusa, Japan, visited Encinitas last month, the group received a $12,000 welcome.

At taxpayers' expense, the 11 visitors slept at the Best Western Encinitas Inn & Suites. They enjoyed catered meals and were treated to lunch and dinner at restaurants. City records show they took a $524 trip to SeaWorld and received more than $1,000 in gifts.

The invoices show payments of $34.60 for chopsticks and $129.30 for Cross pens to sign "treaties" at a ceremony where Japanese and Encinitas officials reaffirmed their ties.

Invoices show the city spent $27,304 to produce the Oct. 1 "Picnic in the Park," where residents could meet and greet the Japanese visitors and celebrate the city's birthday at a free, all-day party. Officials say thousands of guests attended the event, and about one-third of the costs were covered by sponsors.

In June, the City Council approved $10,000 to host the Japanese guests and $20,000 to throw the anniversary party at Cottonwood Creek Park. The money came from the city's operating budget.

Expenses for the Amakusa delegation's visit, however, totaled $12,154, according to the invoices. To pay those bills, city officials tapped $2,500 from the sister city program's $12,000 annual budget.

For the Picnic in the Park, Encinitas paid $27,304. Records show the city received $9,000 in sponsorships, however, which raised the event's budget to $29,000.

All were welcome to the Sunday afternoon picnic, where the city offered free burgers and hot dogs to thousands of visitors. (Records show the city spent $767 at a nearby Smart & Final store for beef patties, plus $332 for wieners and $72 for vegetarian patties).

*note-this was pretty frugal in my opinion.

Food costs at an invitation-only dinner earlier that weekend also were significant.

On Sept. 30, at the exclusive "Mayor's Dinner," the city paid $576 for catering.

The dinner was held at the home of fire Chief Mark Muir ---- a friend of Guerin's ---- with support from firefighters past and present.

The catering was provided by "Firehouse Gourmet," a one-man company run by Don Heiser, Encinitas' former fire chief, who visited Japan at public expense just weeks before he retired June 30.

Party rentals ---- which included dinner china, 13 round tables, linens and red carpet, at a cost of $707 ---- were ordered by Fire Department Division Chief Scott Henry, according to the invoice. Firefighters helped with the set-up.

Some residents criticized Guerin when invitations for the dinner revealed that the get-together "also happens to be on her 50th birthday."

"I can't help it that my birthday is on Sept. 30," Guerin said.

Was the timing unfortunate? Community activist Gary Murphy said he thinks so.

One night after the Mayor's Dinner, the city held a $5,414, public event at the Encinitas Community and Senior Center ---- the "Sister City Signing Ceremony" ---- where officials from Amakusa and Encinitas formally renewed their sisterhood.

Records show 68 guests paid for the $10-a-plate dinner.

The city paid $3,275 to Four Seasons Foods for crab and cream cheese spring rolls, vegetable skewers, macadamia nut-crusted chicken, barons of beef, teriyaki chicken breast and various side dishes.

The second-most-expensive cost was $490 for linens.

Decorations cost $488 and included $90 for flowers and $34.60 for 9-inch, painted chopsticks that a city staffer ordered off the Internet.

The city paid $1,100 for entertainment from three different groups, which included steel-drum players and a choir.

A former deputy fire marshal in Encinitas, Mike Castaneda, earned $175 for videotaping the event, according to an invoice approved by Henry and Guerin.

A party of 17 ---- 11 from Japan and six from Encinitas ---- racked up a $602 tab at Pino's Cucina Italia in Encinitas. The midday meal included pollo marsala and creme brulee.

A Sunday night dinner in San Diego, at a restaurant called Sushi Ota, cost $222.

Two passenger vans, rented for $915 and driven by city employees, provided transportation for the visitors. The city paid $80 for gas and parking.

One outing, to SeaWorld, generated $524 in charges, which included $352 for admission and $96 for lunch at the SeaWorld deli, among other costs.

After the full days, the 11 visitors retired to the Best Western Encinitas Inn & Suites, where taxpayers paid to rent five rooms for three nights, at a total cost of $1,484.

The hotel commands a view of Cottonwood Creek Park, where the Japanese visitors sang "Happy Birthday" to Encinitas and grooved to classic rock furnished by the band Rockola, Guerin said.

Rockola received a $3,850 paycheck.

A company from San Diego that provided four clowns to paint faces and tie balloons for five hours was paid $1,750.

A Carlsbad-based home builder, Barratt American, Inc. gave a $5,000 sponsorship; a waste hauler, EDCO, donated $3,000 for the event; $500 sponsorships came from My Gym and San Diego Medical Supply Equipment, although the city has yet to receive a check from the final sponsor.

*Barratt American has sued the city several times. Barratt American has outraged many residents for their building tactics in older neighborhoods. Barratt American is an interesting player in all this.

To recognize the sponsors, the city paid $168 for customized plaques.

Early on the morning of Oct. 2, the Japanese visitors began their long trip home, but at least one gift made did not travel with them. The city paid $500 to one of its employees, Alex Long, to fabricate a hand-thrown urn adorned with Japanese symbols representing joy and friendship. The iridescent vase weighs 20 pounds, and to ship it, the city paid $545.

Other gift receipts include $55 at Paper Rose for wrapping and $85 for See's Candy.

Exclusive Video: Dan Dalager & Doug Long discuss government & democracy

Life Imitates Art in Encinitas

Danny likes to draw the analogy between his reign on City Council and the old Andy Griffith Show.

From the plot line of the New Andy Griffith Show’ first episode, 1971:

Emmett and Goober travel from Mayberry to Greenwood to ask their old pal Andy to use his influence with the city to rezone a plot of land each of them wants to start a new business.

As Oscar Wilde said, life imitates art far more than art imitates life.

Message from "Pablo"

The following was posted in the comments section:

Dear Fellow Leucadians --
It's time 4 "Pablo" to enter this
We had to wait until sufficient
information had developed to begin
a meaningful dialogue.
Martens has been fortunate so far.
None of the signs have been stolen
or otherwise relocated.
This "practice" is perfectly common
in baseball, but not so in the
political arena.
Alas, Mr. Colbert does not have the
borough of Leucadia "on notice" at
this time, but The Fightin' 50th is
on his "Dead to Me" list as a re-
sult of what we did to him.
Oh well, we can live with this for
the time being.
Martens does not know Stephen, but
Stephen is well aware of him.
Bobby was briefly visible to me
when my visit to the Colbert
Report Studio on 52nd Street took
place on 9-11-06. While we were
not exactly ecstatic to see one
another, I was glad he was OK.
Up until then, we had been unsure
of his whereabouts since his em-
barking with Killer and Rick
Ocasek on their mission to find
Stephen Jr....
More later....
God Bless Leucadia and Our Great
VTY Paul "Pablo" Martens

Saturday, October 21, 2006

"It's the same, usual suspects who have nothing to do but whine,"

Dan Dalager lashed out at city watchdogs Bob Bonde and Donna Westbrook this week because Dan was once again caught mismanaging OUR tax dollars.

"It's the same, usual suspects who have nothing to do but whine," he [Dalager] said. "If they found something positive and productive to do, we'd probably have a better world."

Encinitas paid $20K to produce Operation Homecoming event

What a jerk Dalager has become.

Dan Dalager's narcissistic behavior is just another example of how this Encinitas city council is nothing more than a blown up high school ASB with petty little egos. This council is too immature to handle the responsibility of managing YOUR tax money.

Dan's disrespect for city founder Bob Bonde is over the top. Donna Westbrook is the council's punching bag. If it wasn't for these two tireless individuals this council would get away with murder.

You know what Dan? Maybe if you pulled your head out of your ass and started actually trying to run this city properly maybe then the world would be a better place.

Between mayor Queen Bee Guerin throwing herself a $10,000 birthday party with our tax money and Dalager whining like a little girl that citizens want their elected officials to be accountable, I feel sad and ashamed for our little town.

It is becoming clear that Dalager is becoming a liability to this city. If he is re-elected and his best friend Doug Long wins a seat on the council this city is going to head down a dark path.

I used to like Dan Dalager but that ship has sailed. The irony of Dalager calling Bonde and Westbrook whiners is classic. We need mature adults on the council not overgrown children with arrested development.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Tommy Brown, Member of Very Special Forces

NCT columnist J. STRYKER MEYER discovered that Encinitas city council candidate Tommy Brown may have lied about being a member of the Special Forces Association.

click here to read the column.

Turns out Tommy Brown was a member of the Very Special Forces. In 1999 President Clinton deployed more than 15,000 very special U.S. forces to the Persian Gulf region, of which Tommy Brown was part of. Clinton said the objective of the mission, dubbed Operation Great Job!, is twofold: to keep pressure on Saddam Hussein to permit the return of U.N. weapons inspectors, and to provide America's very special forces with a positive, rewarding, esteem-building experience.

"With Operation Great Job!, we send the message loud and clear to Saddam Hussein that his open defiance of the United Nations and international law will not be tolerated," Clinton said. "We also send the equally important message to our own troops that what's important is not whether you defeat the enemy, but that you try your best and have fun."

Added Clinton: "Hooray, U.S. troops!"

"We are going to win the war," said Pvt. Tommy Brown, MD, eating his snack cup with a Capri-Sun juice-pak. "I love to clap and sing along to the music!"

"If we take out the communications tower in Al Basrah, we can have a pizza party," Brown added. "Pizza party! Pizza party! Pizza party!"

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Doug Long's strange comment about Leucadia sidewalks

A hidden gem in this NCT story about the candidates:

Encinitas council candidates play up volunteer work, family values

He [Long] hinted that volunteer work could stand in place of government process.

Citing the council's recent approval of $300,000 to $400,000 to build sidewalks in Leucadia, Long said, "This is something as a volunteer I would have taken on myself. I'd say put the sidewalks in and blow the (state) Coastal Commission off."

The Coastal Commission does not have regulatory oversight of the Leucadia sidewalk plan, nor has it registered formal opposition to the proposal, a city planner said after Tuesday's forum.

So, according to Doug Long all of you Leucadian taxpayers should just suck it up and install sidewalks yourselves.

Funny, Doug Long's plumbing business is on 2nd Street which has really nice sidewalks. 2nd Street is buddy buddy with coastal downtown Encinitas which has sweet sidewalks and landscaping from the streetscape program.

Did anyone see Doug Long out there with his shirt sleeves rolled up helping the city workers pour cement?

One thing I never understood, why making coastal Leucadia walkable is such high drama. We've discussed on this blog before how simple sidewalks really are. It would be cool if we just built our own sidewalks ourselves, but that isn't very realistic these days. The reality is we would probably get in big trouble.

Doug Long's paranoid comment about the Coastal Commission is disturbing. His best friend Dan Dalager has made some strange remarks about the Coastal Commission in the past as well. Are they hanging out after work having a beer and getting themselves all worked up over nothing?

I mean, seriously..."I'd say put the sidewalks in and blow the (state) Coastal Commission off." That is the lamest quote of the candidate race by far. Is he trying to sound like a badass?

It sounds to me that if Doug Long gets elected we can enjoy more of the status quo in Leucadia, a neglected infrastructure and more bad attitudes.

More Fees for YOU

click images to enlarge

Some visitors may have to click the image twice to read it.

To put this rate increase in context view this previous blog entry:

Financial Flim Flam, click me.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

“It barely pays for what we spend on gas and lunches,”

“This job is very rewarding in many ways,” Mayor Christy Guerin said. “I can think of a thousand reasons” to serve, and pay isn't one of them, she said.

“You do it because you love the city,” she said.

Guerin said people who talk to her are amazed that council members earn so little. “It barely pays for what we spend on gas and lunches,” she said.

from the UT link

Before the pay raise city council members were getting a check for $898.00 a month, that comes out to $224.50 a week, or $56.12 a day (four day work week, the city is closed on Fridays).

Where is Mayor Guerin eating lunch at everyday?

Feel free to get a burrito at Juanita's every once and awhile.

At the new pay scale of $1,077 the council members will have $67.31 for lunch and gas everyday.

If they stay local in Encinitas their gas bill shouldn't be all that bad, they are not commuting to San Diego on the south 5.

Any suggestions for good lunch specials around town for the council?

Monday, October 16, 2006

Activist and Zealots

The Encinitas city council recently voted to give itself a 20% retroactive pay raise.

Council members voted 4-1 to increase their monthly salary from $898 to $1,077.

Councilman James Bond said he hadn't made such a paltry sum since he was a phone-company manager 35 years ago.

Bond also said that if salaries are too low, no one but activists and zealots would run for council, causing chaos in the city. UT link

*deep breath*

Okay, Mr. Bond. Boo fricken' hoo about your phone manager job.


which one are you, activist or zealot?

Because you feverishly ran for city council knowing full well what the pay scale was and you also ran for re-election.

Now, I actually support a pay raise but I agree with councilman Jerome Stocks, Jerome Stocks dissented, explaining after the meeting that the council deserves a wage hike, but 20 percent is too much for me to accept.

Stocks said he also didn't like that it was retroactive

I've seen the Encinitas city council do and say some zany things in the last year, but Bond's quote is a doozy.

Longtime Encinitas city council members, activist or zealots?

Christy Guerin: Zealot

Former asskicking cop living off a sweet worker's comp claim, going to work for conservative member of the American Taliban, Brian Bilbray.

Maggie Houlihan: Activist

Rescues stray kitties while battling cancer and sign wielding lunatics of all kinds.

Jerome Stocks: Activist

He was the first person in a position of government in America to officially rebel against the Supreme Court's eminent domain decision.

Dan Dalagher: Activist

Changes parade names, says he is not a "credit card kind of guy" and then votes in 20 million in bond debt.

Jim Bond: Zealot

Perennial council member is often re-elected because knuckleheads like to check the box that says "James Bond". He shares very little with his fictional super hero counterpart except maybe a love for martinis.

Speaking of chaos...

Hall property park madness, Japanese delegation, street name changes, parade name changes, $10,000 birthday parties on the taxpayer's dime, big developer projects are rubberstamped while Johnny Homebuilder is given grief, the Leucadia Blvd train intersection is killing people, bluffs are crumbling, the firefighter's need new McMansion stations but can't put out any fires, the library is overbudget and behind schedule, street lighting fee scares, bogus clean water fees, botched flooding fix, 20 million in bond debt, no public restrooms at half our beaches, crazy landscapers, eminent domain threat in Leucadia, condo/hotel drama, city founders are shunned from 20th anniversary, Ecke and Prop A, city attorney works for another city, a bumbling city staff, public works yard/Mossy site 9.5 million bucks, traffic gets worse and worse with no road improvements, upzoning without ryhme or reason, it goes on and on and on...

Friday, October 13, 2006

On Notice

NCT endorses Barth, Dalager, rejects plumber

Vote Dalager and Barth in Encinitas

The North County Times has endorsed Teresa Barth for the open seat and is re-electing Dalager, calling 2nd Street plumber candidate Doug Long "Dalagher 2.0".

I agree with this position although Brown is a intriguing candidate to me. However, the NCT is right on this one.

Teresa is a good solid choice. She is sincere, down to earth and keenly intelligent. I feel that we are lucky that such a quality person is running.

We give Dalager a ton of grief on this blog, manly for his bumbling steps when it comes to managing our tax money. But he is a likable guy, he has been around forever, he always answers my e-mails and I like surfing with his son (which means nothing really, I'm just bringing it up).

On his best days Dalager is Andy Griffith, a folksy small town guy. On his worst days he is Gomer Pyle, confused about the complex beaucracy he must manage.

In my opinion a Dalager/Long council is a recipe for disaster. The NCT is right, Doug Long is Dalager 2.0 and therefore repetitive. We need diversity on the council. Cloning Dalager is dangerous.

Besides, if we vote in another dude the council will be a total sausage fest with only one female on the council and that would be lame.

Teresa Barth for city council.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Free Speech vs Slander (and blaming it all on a Mexican???)

From the Union Tribune:

Houlihan sues, says neighbor defamed her with big sign

By Angela Lau

October 12, 2006

– Councilwoman Maggie Houlihan filed a lawsuit yesterday against a neighbor, alleging he defamed her by using a vulgar term to describe her on a large sign he put up in view of traffic on Interstate 5.

Houlihan is seeking unspecified damages against Russell Bowman, owner of American Landscape and Tree Services Inc., located across the street from Houlihan's home on Union Street. The lawsuit asks the court to stop Bowman from erecting defamatory signs.

“It was not a statement related to a matter of public interest,” said Ken Cariffe, one of Houlihan's attorneys. “This is libel.”

I'm not a lawyer but I think Bowman crosses the line from free speech and making a political statement to slander but attempting to state "Houlihan is a whore" because he can't prove this statement. It's, like his opinion man. Are opinions protected under free speech? Yes, so it's a sticky one. Can he prove Houlihan is a whore? Is there a legal defination of the word whore?

He was referring to the latest and most controversial of a series of anti-Houlihan signs put up since last year on Bowman's 5-acre property, which faces the freeway.

The latest sign, about 72 square feet, called Houlihan a “whore.” It was removed Tuesday after being displayed for 10 days.

If I'm not mistaken Houlihan is married right? I don't think I would have the self discipline to keep myself from beating the living shit out of Bowman if I were Maggie's husband. I know Bowman is a crackpot who has lots of guns and that Houlihan is a public figure so you gotta handle this the right way...but sheesh.

The size of that sign and others on the property violated city codes, and code enforcement officials cited Bowman in August and again last week. The municipal code limits personal outdoor signs to 16 square feet and business advertisements to 32 square feet.

The city also issued three citations between February and August for grading violations that Bowman has not corrected.

Instead of erecting the signs Bowman should have contacted Barratt American CEO and North County Times columnist Michael D. Pattinson so he could have been written up as a hero just like Rosa Parks. link

The City Council met in closed session yesterday to discuss the violations. Afterward, the city attorney announced that the council had authorized the staff “to move forward to full compliance, including but not limited to filing a lawsuit if necessary.” Houlihan did not participate in the meeting, he said.

The large signs on Bowman's property in recent months included several that read “Vote No Houlihan.” Those remained in place yesterday. Three large crosses, which fell under regulations for “structures,” had been removed.

Jesus H. Christ on a stick, this is some serious drama. He should have left the Jesus up there, I kinda liked him.

In an e-mail and subsequent phone interview this week, Bowman said Houlihan used her position to prevent him from developing or rezoning his property to build low-income housing.

He also said he never painted or erected the anti-Houlihan signs and that they were put up by Latinos offended by remarks she had made toward them.

Okay, maybe he paid some "latinos" to erect the signs but comon' dude, you can't weasel out of this now. This is so lame is just sad. Normally when a douche bag in the news puts one on a tee for me to knock out of the park I get giddy but this time it's just too pathetic to bother with.

He claimed the councilwoman had uttered racial slurs at his family and threatened to use eminent domain to turn his property into a bird sanctuary.

Uh yeah, I really see the council given that one a majority vote.

Houlihan said Bowman's charges are “100 percent untrue.”

“My neighbor is Mexican-American,” she said. “I love my street. The proof is in the ethnic mix on this street.”

Some of my best friends are black people. Really, Houlihan shouldn't even have addressed this.

She said she has recused herself from deliberations related to Bowman, who has addressed the City Council more than once in the past year.

This is the most important part of the story. Bowman is so dense he can't figure out that A. the rest of the city council doesn't like or listen to Houlihan anyway and B. SHE DIDN'T FREAKING VOTE ON HIS ISSUE.

In February, the council agreed to his request to overturn an earlier city decision, made in response to neighborhood complaints, revoking his right to operate a landscaping and greenhouse business in a residential neighborhood.

In September, the council denied his request to almost triple the permissible building density on his property.

Left out of this story is that Bowman falsified documents and that councilman Dalagher admitted to knowing this at a council meeting (that was a classic surreal Danny moment).

Yesterday, Bowman's attorney, Larry Marshall, said his client has offered to stop putting up large signs and to post a $50,000 bond while he corrects the grading violations within one year.

I was thinking somebody should hire some of those lame housing development sign twirlers to stand at the end of Union St in color coordinated outfits and signs that read BOWMAN IS A DOUCHE BAG.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

How does it feel?

Shawn Styles, ace reporter

You can watch a video clip of KFMB's report on spazzy tree trimmer Russel Bowman's "Houlian is a whore" signage on the News 8 website. click here.

Shawn says, "There is more than one way to skin a cat." Is he making an inside joke or just lucky for us?

Previous blog post on this matter with sweet Zapruder style photos I took, click here.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Encinitas tourist home movie clip

Slightly unwatchable but oddly compelling, a couple enjoys an afternoon in downtown Encinitas.

Encinitas, we need this.

Check out this story in the Union Tribune about city councils getting tech savvy. Encinitas could really use this.

click me to read the story.

From the article:

In a trend that bodes well for citizen participation and transparency in government, City Council meetings are increasingly going high tech. Videostreaming enables video and audio recordings of a council meeting to be stored and accessed on the city's Web site.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Weekly Roundup

The local papers have been chocked full of Encinitas news and goodness lately.

Check out Robert Nanninga's piece in the Oct. 6 Coast News, Encinitas cronyism lets Guerin eat cake. (If the Coast News would update their website I would link it or copy and paste the meaty parts, hrmmph).

It's the best piece Nanninga has written in a long time and a refreshing detour from the usual doom and gloom "the human race sucks" drivel he usually writes. This one is sharp and witty and on the mark. He actually does some helpful journalism, exposing the growing creepiness of the Muir/Waynio/Guerin/Dalagher relationship.

This could mark a turning point for Nanninga. He weakly supported Prop A and Prop C while inbetween rantings about sunken ships and dive tours (?!?) but maybe this article is a sign of more great stuff around the corner for him. I look forward to this week's column from him.

Also in the same issue of the Coast News, a good letter by perennial pain in the ass, Kevin C who critizes Dalagher's attitude about the Mossy purchase and other meaty subjects. Kevin has improved greatly in the last year as a city critic now writing on the mark letters that appeal to the casual reader.

In the North County Times last week:

Encinitas ponders property sales

Includes a good web comment by our pal Kevin:

Kevin wrote on October 08, 2006 8:58 AM:"Page 20 of the appraisal explains why the estimated market value of the property (land & improvements) is $8.5 million, which is one million less than we paid. To the general market the buildings are actually a liability. The appraiser estimated it would cost $200,000 to demolish the buildings and deducted that from his appraised value to arrive at the $8.5 million dollar figure. The appraiser and commercial real estate people I ran the appraisal by agree that there are a number of very questionable things going on. The 8.5 mill figure was way too high. Given that, we very well may have come out ahead of other options for a public works yard even with the purchase at 9.5, but that does not explain the discrepancies in the council's justifications for the purchase price. They said two conflicting things; that we drove a hard bargain & we just simply paid market value. I doubt we drove a hard bargain because paid what we had budgeted for constructing a yard. I know we didn't pay market value. Page 2 of the appraisal reads, "Fee Simple Market Value: $8,500,000." We paid $9.5. "

Encinitas council up for a 20 percent raise

Honestly, I don't really care if the council gets a raise but they are crazy for bringing this up now. Stocks sounds like he is smart enough to know that the current climate to too volatile for this. If it makes the council feel any better, I get all the same long winded crazy e-mails they get but I have to read them for free.

Proposal calls for 19 homes overlooking Batiquitos Lagoon

There has been plenty of commentary about La Costa Ave on this blog before. The city really needs to consider improving that road before rubber stamping anymore development. Think the hotel, news homes, new condos, the nursery workers putt putting on their little work carts, increased traffic from the freeway offramp and the gas station.

Paperwork reveals Encinitas campaign finances

Just in case you are keeping score. Big spenders beware, the most money doesn't always win in this town.

North County Times to hold community forum in Encinitas

Without the NCT.com web coverage and new easy links they provide I would have given up on this blog a long time ago. This is your chance to praise/harass plucky local reporter Adam Kaye in person.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

North County Times sends sexually explicit e-mail to the Coast News

The daily newspaper the North County Times is on the hot seat for sending sexually lurid e-mails to the local weekly paper, the Coast News. Despite the fact that the Coast News is a minor the NCT regularly sent it e-mails soliciting sex.

In one e-mail the NCT boldly asked the Coast News, "Do I make you horny?" to which the Coast News replied, "A little."

When confronted with the accusations the NCT broke down and wept and blamed the Union Tribune for molesting it back when the NCT was just a pamphlet.

20% pay raise sure to increase whining by 30%

Encinitas council up for a 20 percent raise

By: ADAM KAYE - Staff Writer

The City Council is scheduled to decide Wednesday whether to give itself a 20 percent raise.

The increase would bump monthly paychecks of the five Encinitas council members from $897.93 to $1,077.

If approved, the raise would be the council's first since 2002. It would take effect in December, after the two winners of the Nov. 7 election are sworn into office.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Area yokel freaks out, goes apeshit.

click images for large view

Signs on freeway denigrate Encinitas councilwoman

*UPDATE-Union Tribune story here.

Dying the death of a thousand cuts

Guest commentary:

The City of Encinitas is currently dying the death of a thousand cuts. This ancient oriental torture method inflicted small non-fatal injury until the tortured person slowly died of the cumulative effect.
This is precisely what is happening to the traffic/development in Encinitas. The smaller developments now proposed do a traffic study that shows the traffic impact to be below 2% of the existing traffic count, exempting them from mitigation other than traffic mitigation fees. They use “background” traffic increase figures at 1% or 2% when actual counts can be multiples of that [thanks San Marcos
and Carlsbad!] or they figure other proposed projects and simply leave out any “background” estimates at all. City street designations are ignored or changed to some other standard. The City has the right to deny development when traffic conditions reach a certain point. This has never been done to my knowledge.
We can't control the development outside our City and it goes on unhindered, but we can legally control the development within the City. Why not have any up zoning of property be on an emergency basis with a 4-1 vote of the City Council and the Planning Commission? Why not speed up the building permit process for those willing to down zone their property? What about lowering the available building permits on a graduated, year to year basis?
When all the streets in Encinitas have speed bumps, roundabouts, and traffic calming devices or will be clamoring for them, will you do something then? How much is enough Encinitas?

Herb Patterson

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Candidate Forum Tonight, Olivenhain

Encinitas council candidates' forum scheduled tonight

Hosted by the Olivenhain Town Council from 7 to 9 p.m. at 423 Rancho Santa Fe Road.

Some questions to ask:

The current city council has tried to raise fees and taxes numerous times, all the while claiming the city finances are in great shape. Do you support an independent audit of the city?

Is it moral to force someone to sell their private property via eminent domain and sell it to another private party? The Supreme Court has decided this is legal, but in your opinion is this moral?

Should Encinitas have an elected city attorney?

Should Encinitas have a strong mayor system?

Would you be willing to lead an investigation on why the Leucadia flooding "fix" actually made the flooding worse?

The Leucadia Blvd/Hwy101 intersection is dysfunctional and unsafe. What is your solution to improving this intersection?

Monday, October 02, 2006

No one would ever sell their personal property the way the city did

Stop the Land Transactions?

From the September issue of Encinitas Views:

Q. Why do some in the public think there should be a moratorium on real estate transactions until a new council is elected?

A. The short answer is a list. The Mossy car dealership purchase, the Saxony land swap, the La Costa open space, the Seeman & Lone Jack vacant land and, unfortunately, the Hall Property. If the city were our real estate agent we would have fired them long ago. We repeatedly overpaid for land and failed to do adequate investigations of the land before completing the transaction. The squander will haunt our budgets for years.

Q. The council is proud of the Mossy dealership purchase. They say it solves a major problem for the city. Why is that on the list?

A. Yes, it solves a couple problems. First, it gives us a place to put a permanent public works yard and the Mossy site is turnkey. They had demolished the old public works site without locking in a replacement. They had cornered themselves. Second, it takes the Saxony land swap off the table. Against great public opposition, the council had decided that the Ecke’s Saxony property was where the public works yard should go even though the site hadn’t been considered as part of the original public search. Once the UT reported that the city was well on the way to giving Ecke $6 million worth of city land in exchange for some of Ecke’s agricultural land that was only worth $700,000 the public came unglued. This should have been troubling for Council Member Dalager because he had publicly declared the land swap to be a “no brainer.” The Mossy purchase helps to bury that plan.

The problem with the Mossy purchase was at $9.5 million the city flat out paid too much for the property. The city’s own appraisal says the fee simple market value was $8.5 million dollars and that value is dubious given information within the same appraisal. We paid at least one million dollars too much. Probably three. We should have been able to get a spectacular deal. At the meeting announcing the purchase, Dalager went on and on about how Mossy admitted that this was their only dealership location to flounder and that Mossy had tried but couldn’t find another buyer. Ironically, Dalager, who is a lawnmower repairman by trade, thought that he had out-negotiated one of our country’s most successful car dealers.

Q. You say the Mossy site was turnkey but didn’t the council just vote to spend half a million dollars on converting the dealership to a public works yard?

A. That expenditure wasn’t discussed at the meeting they announced the Mossy purchase. We should give the council a break here, no one could expect any site to be perfectly set up for our needs, but… that fits their pattern of behavior, you know, commit to a big project without first acknowledging and adequately planning for the entire thing.

Q. Your list of transactions includes the sale of surplus land. Were mistakes made on sales too?

A. The best way to describe it is to say that no one would ever sell their personal property the way the city did. Because the council needed to inject cash into their budget the city sold off land in Olivenhain and an ocean view lot in Encinitas. (The Olivenhain site could have been a nice park or fire station.) This was in 2004. The real estate market was red hot and the method of marketing the property certainly should have been questioned long before the close of bidding. Only one bid was received and few people inquired.

The city put up signs on the property for a short time and put a dinky little notice in the UT. That’s it. Few potential buyers were aware of the offering. The single bidder was a neighbor of the ocean view lot. He had bid the minimum bid identified in the notice. After discovering he was the only bidder, he notified the council that he was changing his offer to 90K less than he had originally offered. The council accepted the new offer after the city’s appraiser conveniently reduced the appraised value, which was below the publicly noticed minimum bid.

They should have never renegotiated. They should have never accepted anything under the minimum bid. They should have marketed the property so that a large pool of potential buyers were aware. This was quality property and there were a lot of speculators looking to sink big money into Encinitas property at that time. It was a frenzy.

Q. Was the La Costa Avenue open space property quality property?

A. From a development standpoint that property was useless. For some reason we paid top dollar for those 17 acres, $1.4 million in 2002. The owner of the property bought the site in 1998 for $260K and public records show that he attempted to put a single home on the site. The property is super steep bluffs with one flat area at the base of a ravine. The property was unstable and would require a mammoth engineering effort to build on. That’s the site that slid out onto La Costa Avenue in the big rains two years ago. (Public records show that city engineers knew the site’s stability needed to be addressed even before the city bought the property, which was made worse when the city permitted the developer to clear much of the site’s vegetation. Nothing was done until after the landslide happened. In 2005, the city estimated that half a million dollars worth of work went into stabilizing the site.)

The seller’s politically connected real estate agent had been marketing the property as a development mitigation site. Basically, the site wasn’t developable. That means three things: 1) it was going to be open space before the city purchased it, 2) the developer should be happy when the site finally slid across La Costa Avenue that he didn’t own it anymore, and 3) you would expect that the property would be worth less than the $260k he bought it for (after adjustment for inflation). The city got duped.

Oh, oh wait. Even if the site was buildable, the development would have had to meet the general plan’s open space provisions because of the site’s steep slopes. By the site’s well know development restrictions much of it would have been open space. The whole thing wasn’t a very efficient use of open space purchasing funds.

Q. The Hall property is the pride of the council and its development is the reason some council members want to be on the council. How can that be on the list?

A. The potential of the Hall Property absorbs the hopes of the entire city. It would be great to see it become our crown jewel. Unfortunately, we paid too much for the property. Had we paid a reasonable amount we would have more money available today to
put into building park infrastructure. Instead, the council is in a position where they are taking on massive debt to help pay for projects thoughout the city. We certainly didn’t get the Hall property at a price that reflected the lack of access to the site or the uncertainty of the property’s level of contamination.

The Hall property held greenhouses for decades and in the early years many nasty pesticides were used there. Some people think the city purposely broke the California Environmental Quality Act in an effort to hide the contamination. That violation was the subject of a lawsuit the city lost in 2004, which forced the city to do an adequate study of the site.This should have already been done. It should have been done before we closed escrow and bought the property. You should read the judge’s ruling. It isn’t a pretty portrait of our city’s administration. We won’t know if we bought a park site or useless toxic site until the city releases that environmental impact report. The EIR was due out in July 2006.


Sunday, October 01, 2006

20 Years of Wacky Adventures

Encinitas has been a city for 20 years today.

San Diego Union Tribune story click here.

North County Times Encinitas turns 20 years old Sunday

Interesting items from both articles:

Not scheduled as part of the fanfare, though, is an official recognition of the more than 100 people who donated their time and shoe leather to the incorporation effort.

In 1994, after incorporation but before the commercial developments, the city received $10.6 million in property-tax revenue and $4.2 million in sales taxes.

This year, property-tax income has reached $22.7 million, and sales-tax revenue has brought in $11.4 million.

Today, the city boasts:

A host of new neighborhood parks, plus 43 acres bought for a park southwest of Santa Fe Road and Interstate 5.

The 50-acre Indian Head Canyon open-space preserve.

The $10 million Encinitas Community & Senior Center on Oakcrest Park Drive.

Stairs at Beacons, Swami's, Stone Steps and Grandview beaches.

Beach sand replenishment funded with federal and state money.

A $20 million library under construction on Cornish Drive.

A fire station on Balour Drive.

A $5.2 million streetscape project that renovated downtown.

An 18-hole municipal golf course.

A $900,000 Cottonwood Creek water treatment plant that has turned Moonlight Beach, where the creek empties, from one of the most polluted in the state to one of the cleanest.

Councilman Dan Dalager, who said he voted against incorporation, added that “the dust has settled very nicely."