Monday, March 31, 2008

Still There

In 21st Century southern California it's nice to see some preservation exist here and there.


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Postcards courtesy of Fred Caldwell.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Leucadia 1972

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Friday, March 28, 2008


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The Leucadia 101 Post Office. Puppet and suck.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Bamboo 2u and Tikis Too

One of the more funky/cool downtown Leucadia business is Bamboo 2u and Tikis Too. They just redid the front of the store, adding some landscaping to the front planter. Looks swell.

1240 N Coast Hwy
Leucadia, CA 92024
(760) 943-6284

I couldn't find a website.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sheltered Paradise, the trees make it so

Exhibit A: Coronado Ave in Imperial Beach, California. No big trees, just a few scraggly palms. Note the thin center median where nothing can grow. Lots of corporate franchises, not much in the way of independent small business.

Exhibit B: Leucadia Hwy 101, Leucadia California. Old growth trees on both sides of the road and the center median. (and lots of cool mom&pop small business).

Leucadia is Funky, not junky.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

A Lesson on Secrecy and Slippery Slopes

Encinitas council learns a lesson on secrecy

March 22, 2008

What a slippery slope a City Council tries to climb when it conducts public business in closed session and by observing only the bare minimum of legal requirements.

Encinitas, now under the council majority of Jerome Stocks, Dan Dalager and James Bond, some time ago changed the way the city schedules closed meetings. It now calls them “special” and gives the public 24 hours notice instead of 72.

This creates the potential for abuse. Someone objecting to the propriety of considering something in closed session has little time to seek relief from the courts.

We have opined on this before. What Encinitas now calls “special,” we call “abhorrent.”

Stocks, mayor for this year, says the 24-hour notice allows the city much more flexibility in arranging a closed-session agenda and is reluctant to have closed meetings on a formal schedule. But, why does Encinitas, a city of 63,000, have so many lawsuits and personnel matters to take up behind closed doors? Presumably, only those who meet in secret know for sure.

Recently, Encinitas took another step to make its government even less transparent. City Council actions taken in the afternoon closed sessions, someone or someones decided, would no longer be reported to the public at the evening regular sessions.

What that meant, for example, is that on March 12 the council took two actions behind closed doors after short public notice, walked into an empty council chamber and gave a report that appears on no videotape. The public showing up for the 6 p.m. regular meeting was oblivious as to what happened.

If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there, does it make a sound?

It sounds to us like Stocks, Dalager and Bonds went out of their way to create public distrust and foster conditions ripe for abuse.

The right thing is to report the actions taken immediately after the closed session and to repeat the report during the regular session when someone is actually present to hear it. How difficult is that?

To Stocks' credit, after this page began inquiring into the Encinitas situation, he revised the policy: “I will now, effective today [Wednesday], be making sure [in a move to ensure “belts and suspenders” disclosure] that the city attorney also report out any special meeting activity during the 'reports' portion of the regular City Council meeting.”

This is an election year and what the threesome was unwittingly doing was handing the council minority of Teresa Barth and Maggie Houlihan a sure-fire issue. No member of the public is going to call for more secrecy in government. Neither is the media.

What last week's items were about is not the issue. But, since we've aroused your curiosity, one had to do with building heights (Leucadia Cares v. City of Encinitas) and the other with a long-running battle by an adult bookstore to stay in business (City of Encinitas v. F Street). The city apparently prevailed on a definition of building heights in a dispute with Barratt American. The adult-store dispute was sent back to trial court.

So, three council members unwisely put themselves in an untenable position. When the spotlight was turned on Encinitas' policy, Stocks adeptly changed it. Give Stocks credit for correcting the situation. Give Barth and Houlihan credit for forcing the issue.

We'll let Teresa Barth have the last word: “As I said previously, I think Encinitas should strive to do the best, not the least.”

See also: History of Consent Calendar Misuse

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Friday, March 21, 2008

Encinitas Taxpayers Association Open Community Forum March 31st


Monday, March 31st Forum Starts at 6:30 and Ends at 7:30

At the New City Library Join the ETA and representatives from both SDG&E (a Sempra Energy Utility[1]) and the Utility Consumers Action Network (UCAN[2]) to talk about the Sunrise Powerlink[3]. The forum will help residents understand some of the debate leading to decisions that will be made by the California Public Utility Commission(CPUC[4]) regarding our future energy infrastructure.

Please come to ask questions about the costs to ratepayers and benefits for utility users of the Sunrise Powerlink.

This is the first in a series of Encinitas Taxpayer Association community forums. Through these forums the Encinitas Taxpayer Association hopes to help develop community dialogue on issues that are both complex and important to Encinitas taxpayers and ratepayers.

Library Address:
540 Cornish Drive
Encinitas, CA 92024

For more information and updates go to: [5]

Or contact the ETA at:


Thursday, March 20, 2008

Springtime in Leucadia

If you haven't been to the beach yet this spring make time to do it. There is a ton of sand on the beach and the current mild tides are ideal for long walks. Who knows how long the flower bloom will last so get out of the house and take the family down to the beach.

Leucadia Blog: Beacon's Beach Wildflowers

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Strange Tree Vandalism at Cottonwood Creek

Some unknown person/persons had trimmed a bunch of lower branches on trees and shrubs at Cottonwood Creek (the portion of land between Highway 101 and B Street in Encinitas that is kept as a natural habitat area).

Then today it was discovered that two large trees were cut down right along Hwy101, a Cottonwood and a Sycamore. Volunteers with the Cottonwood Creek Conservancy work hard to restore and maintain this area in a natural state. It is really discouraging for them to see this destruction and trimming of the trees. It is not known if it was the same person or persons that did both damage.

And, why? This is not an area where the trees are manicured, this is a remaining jewel of what nature used to be like in this area of Encinitas. By the way, trimming native riparian vegetation after March 15th is in violation of the Department of Fish and Game regulations that strive to protect nesting birds.

Kegger at Jerome's

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The notice appears to be sent at the expense of taxpayer’s of the 74th Assembly District. I can only assume this meeting is open to anyone who RSVP’s.

It would be a great chance to ask Martin about the BIA’s effort to take local zoning control away form local governments. Wouldn’t it be interesting to hear Mayor Stocks and Assemblyman Martin’s opinion on that subject?


Video from Jerome's last party,

Monday, March 17, 2008

Encinitas 101 Coordinator Peder Norby Off the Grid (almost)

Carlsbad man builds zero energy house

By: DAVE DOWNEY - Staff Writer

CARLSBAD ---- For those who live in this upscale seaside city, it's hard to miss Peder Norby. He's the big, jovial, 40-something guy who tools around in an open-air, oversized golf cartlike car to the beach, church, bank, post office and grocery store.

And he never has to go to a gas station.

"My gas is our sun," his license plate frame explains of the solar energy that powers the batteries that run his car.

Norby, 46, the former executive director of the Downtown Encinitas MainStreet Association and who is now coordinator of a Highway 101 restoration program, plugs into the sun through an outlet in his garage.

That outlet taps into the 4.4 kilowatts from 21 solar panels on his roof that also provide energy for the home that sits on a half-acre overlooking Agua Hedionda Lagoon.

"It's a zero energy home," Norby said. "That means it produces as much energy as it uses."

read the rest of the article here.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Leucadia Pedestrian Tunnels: a terrible waste of money or wise investment?

Because we live in 21st century America the simple and affordable solution to moving pedestrians safely across train tracks is not an option.

In 21st century America we gotta dig deep.

From the North County Times:

The undercrossings are expected to cost about $5 million each, for a total of about $20 million.

Many in the audience noted that much cheaper ground-level at-grade crossings are used in other states and other countries. At-grade pedestrian rail crossings generally use automatic metal gates hooked to sensors in the tracks that only open when trains are not coming.

Russell Levan noted that at-grade crossings are much cheaper than digging under the rails.

"It just seems like a terrible waste of money at a time when there isn't any to be had," he said.

But Tognoli said the California Public Utilities Commission does not favor at-grade crossings because they do not separate pedestrians and trains. He said getting approval for ground-level crossings would be a long battle with no guarantee of success.

"If you want to have a project, this, realistically, is your only option," he said. source

Burning Question: $5 million bucks to get a human across four feet and eight-and-half-inches of train track?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Goals 2008

From the Encinitas Taxpayers Association Blog:

New Goals Discussed

On March 5th the Encinitas City Council held a goal setting meeting to discuss new goals for 2008. Capital improvement projects are dealt with on a two year cycle and this might explain why the budget was approved before the goal setting took place. (Although, that didn't stop staff from proposing several isolated and unprioritized capital projects when the new budget was recently approved). The goal setting is a place for the community to inventory needs and hopes so they can be assessed and prioritized.

See the goals set by the individual council members click here.

One of the goals discussed is to do something about the stellar orange sandbags at Leucadia Blvd and Hwy101.

Leucadia Blog: Beautifying North Coast Highway 101 top the City Council's priority list for 2007

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Beach Bluff Collapse in North Leucadia story with slideshow.

Recycle Your Electronic Waste in Leucadia April 19th

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*Sometimes these e-waste recycling events are feel good scams (see this Wired Magazine article) but I've been assured this event is on the up and up.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Beacon's Beach Wildflowers

The February rains brought some nice March flowers to the Beacon's Beach bluff trail,

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Bad Week: Death on the Tracks in Leucadia

Two woman have died on the train tracks in Leucadia in separate incidents this week.

March 03, 2008
Woman hit, killed by train in Encinitas

A woman was killed Monday night when she walked onto the railroad tracks and was struck by a freight train in the Leucadia community of Encinitas, authorities said.

The incident occurred shortly after 10 p.m. near Ashbury Street and North Vulcan Avenue, a North Comm fire dispatcher said. Sheriff's Lt. Mike McClain said it wasn't clear if it was an accident or suicide.

The woman may have been crossing the tracks with a companion when a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train hit her. She died at the scene, McClain said. source

Woman killed by train in Leucadia
Saturday, March 8, 2008

LEUCADIA----A woman died after she was hit by a train this morning, authorities said.

Shortly before 11 a.m., a woman stepped in front of a southbound Amtrak train near Leucadia Boulevard and Highway 101, Sheriff's Department Lt. Bill Donahue said. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The sheriff's railroad enforcement team is investigating the case as a suicide, Donahue said. source

Friday, March 07, 2008


The new DEMA website is pretty good. They have a good local business directory, some cool historic photos and other stuff to click around.

Downtown Encinitas Mainstreet Association website.