Thursday, March 26, 2009

Your Leucadia Hwy101 Tree Update

Subject: Tree Maintenance - Hwy 101

Good morning,

Larry asked that I update you on our efforts to complete the tree maintenance project on North Coast Highway 101.

As you will remember, we did an extensive inspection of the trees in the corridor. We had three certified arborists inspect the trees. It was determined that 11 of the trees should be removed and the remaining should be pruned. The removals will begin next Tuesday, March 31.

We have kept our community groups (Leucadia 101 Main Street Association, Leucadia Town Council & DEMA) updated on our project and have informed them that we will begin our last push to complete the maintenance work in the corridor next week. We will prune the trees in the median and remove the 11 bad trees. We will also finish the pruning on the east side of 101 south of Leucadia Blvd.

As it relates to the replanting trees, we are coordinating with the Streetscape Project and will replant trees as part of that improvement.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call.

Mark Hosford

Street Division Superintendent

City of Encinitas

505 S. Vulcan Ave.

Encinitas, CA. 92024


Is it worth a tree to print me? P


  1. Thanks Mark and Larry.

    Please do us all a favor and keep the Parks Departments 4 arborists away from our Trees.

  2. Donald Cohen: Supervisory actions
    County Supervisor resignations could lead to hand-me-down appointments

    By Donald Cohen, SDNN

    Monday, March 23, 2009 7 Comments | read comments | post a comment
    The San Diego political community is buzzing with rumors that long-time County Supervisors Greg Cox and Ron Roberts will retire sometime soon. The heart of the story is that instead of serving out their remaining years, one or both might resign mid-term allowing the County Board to appoint a successor.

    This would presumably be the preferred choice of the local Republican establishment, increasingly worried about San Diego’s “blue-ward” shift after Obama’s first-time-since-FDR county democratic majority last November. Since Cox and Roberts are both Republicans in districts with massive Democratic registration advantage, a mid-term appointment may be the only way for the party to hold on to the nominally non-partisan seats. Especially if their replacements were ‘elected’ by the four remaining members of the Board of Supervisors - all Republicans.

    If Cox or Roberts were to resign mid-term the County Charter (section 401.4) gives the Board three options of how to fill the seat. The remaining board members could then 1) appoint a successor to fill the expired term, 2) appoint a successor until a special election or 3) make no appointment and immediately hold a special election.

    But there is a fourth option that would be better for democracy. The supervisors could appoint a ‘caretaker’ supervisor until the next election with a commitment that he or she won’t run for the office. It’s the deal that New Hampshire Senator Judd Gregg made with that state’s governor before (temporarily) accepting the nomination to become President Obama’s Commerce Secretary. It was a classy counterpoint to former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich’s abuse of the unitary power of governors to fill Senate vacancies. The Board of Supervisors has even chosen this option once before when they appointed Patrick Boarman as a caretaker to fill Roger Hedgecock’s seat left vacant by his successful run for Mayor in 1982.

    Since there are no term limits, an appointment to the Board of Supervisors can, in effect, be for a lifetime. It’s been 25 years since an incumbent supervisor has been beaten at the polls. In 1984, Imperial Beach Mayor Brian Bilbray rode a bulldozer from the Tijuana River into office and George Bailey ousted Paul Fordem. The County’s population was considerably smaller in the 1980s and there are still only five supervisors, so candidates had to campaign to many fewer voters than they do now. In 1980, San Diego County had a total population of 1.86 million with each supervisor representing about 370,000 people. The latest population figures for the County put that number at 562,000 people per supervisor.

    As the county grew the supervisors became more distant from individual voters. And the power of incumbency surged as challengers needed to raise even more money to reach more voters and Supervisors were able to raise large sums as sitting elected officials.

    Cox’s appointment in 1995, when Bilbray went to Congress, is the perfect example of an end-run around the rigors of elections and a robust democracy. Now, if Cox stepped down before his term ends and the Board were to make another non-caretaker appointment to fill the vacancy, it’d mean the seat would have been passed down the imperial line since 1985. Given the uphill climb for a challenger today running in a district larger than all but the four largest cities in California, the hand-me-down seat could be passed on for another 15 years - or more.

    One can only imagine the political machinations in determining who gets an appointment-for-life. While technically Cox or Roberts wouldn’t have a vote on their replacement, their ability to decide when and if an appointment happens at all gives them the virtual unitary power that Blagojevich had in appointing Obama’s successor in the Senate. In this case, the appointee would be getting an almost guaranteed life-time job that pays well, has good benefits and a seat of power. The potential horse trading among supervisors, backroom deals and even new careers for the retiring members could create an endless number of appointment scenarios.

    It’s a bad sign that Cox’s most recent attempt at making County elections ‘more democratic’ was his proposal to prohibit “write-in” candidates for County offices during general elections. That was to head off another threat to incumbents by a candidate like Donna Frye, who could defy the odds with a successful write-in candidacy. In the name of cleaning up the County Charter, Cox, Roberts and the Board made it even a little easier for seats to be passed down from generation to generation.

    We can only hope that the Board of Supervisors chooses democracy over hand-me-down government in the coming years.

    Donald Cohen is the co-founder and president of the Center on Policy Initiatives (CPI), a San Diego based research and advocacy organization. He is the former political director of the San Diego- Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO. He also has served on the Workforce Investment Board, the Public Policy Committee of the San Diego Chamber of Commerce, the City of San Diego Strategic Framework Committee, the Mayor’s Affordable Housing Task Force and the Mayor’s Committee on Smart Growth.

  3. Jerome has a bonerMarch 26, 2009 3:46 PM

    OMG- Reading the above, you know Jerome has a big old boner.

  4. Thank you Donald Cohen. It reminds of the days when one could open a newspaper and learn - rather than just get the big business backed talking points. Let's hope democracy get some oxygen.

  5. Unless Jerome moves, I don't think he could replace Cox or Roberts. He’s not in their jurisdiction.

    And there is no way he could be Slater. She is way above Jerome’s level in every sense. I think Jerome is stuck in his political career at the local level. Lucky us.

    His only hope is if Slater move up or moves out.

  6. Unless Jerome moves, I don't think he could replace Cox or Roberts. He’s not in their jurisdiction.

    And there is no way he could be Slater. She is way above Jerome’s level in every sense. I think Jerome is stuck in his political career at the local level. Lucky us.

    His only hope is if Slater move up or moves out.

  7. I wrote the City. Please, everyone, write Council and asking that we have time for a second opinion from someone other than those who are not required to have a degree, and who are paid to take out trees, not necessarily to preserve them.

    Attention Honorable Mayor, Council, Staff, Environmental Commission, City of Encinitas

    Here is the current post on City of Encinitas, please do not cut down eleven more trees after the debacle in Orpheus Park. Begin your maintenance, and wait for public input and feedback from people with college degrees, including from the Environmental Commission before you remove any more trees. The Eucalyptus trees are part of our heritage and we would like an independent opinion from a tree preservationist whether more can be saved by careful maintenance:

    I hope the Environmental Commission can be involved with preserving more of our trees. I see from the letter above, posted on that eleven more trees are to be cut along the North Highway 101 corridor. Supposedly three certified arborists have done an “inspection” and determined they cannot be saved?

    I would like a botanist or someone other than arborists who do not have to have a four year degree to examine the trees before they are “axed.” It’s a sad coincidence that eleven trees were cut in Orpheus and now the City is planning on cutting down eleven more, again without time for public input at a Council Meeting. Why are these tree “massacre” events scheduled at the end of a month, when we all know there are no City Council Meetings the first Wednesday of the month? I advise asking for delay until there can be discussion of these trees, as well.

    Also, you did not address any of my concerns in my previous e-mail of 3/24/09 to you, below:

    Honorable Environmental Commissioners and to whom it may concern among City of Encinitas public officers:

    I am glad that the new Environmental Commission is being proactive, and we support anything that will bring attention toward environmental preservation.

    After the debacle of eleven trees being cut down in Orpheus Park without opportunity for citizens to be heard, or open Council discussion at a public hearing, a new tree policy manual is now being designed by public works in Encinitas. The citizens and Council Member Teresa Barth had asked that this report should go to the new Environmental Commission for a public hearing before it goes to Council for that public hearing.

    The three-man majority on Council, with Maggie Houlihan present by telephone, only, due to health reasons, "shot that suggestion down." Really, the more public input and community involvement, the better, on the tree policy manual, which is supposed to be ready for public review within three months. Many citizens who keep track of what is going on at City Hall wish that the three man majority on Council would allow the various commissions to work as they were designed, as a voice of the people, without focusing more self authority” onto staff, which also gives the three Council men more control.

    Staff and the various commissions should not be in competition with one another. For example, Council members should not have directed staff to appeal the Planning Commission's recommendations regarding the Hall Property. Routinely, commissions review reports and policy or planning decisions before Council reviews them. The tree policy should be going through a public hearing before the Environmental Commission before it comes to Council. The members of that commission are more expert in the environment than public works staff.

    Thank you for your expertise, your efforts, and for your passion for environmental integrity.

  8. Why did someone try to change the subject before Lynn's comment?

    I hope we can save more of the trees in Leucadia and throughout Encinitas.

  9. Lynn,

    It is really tacky to quote the Leucadia blog.

  10. Why? My intention was to speak on topic, here and to the City.

    Please, you can try to distract all you want, or to call names. This was posted here, Mark Hosford's letter, for a reason.

    Of course I will quote a letter from City Staff on this blog when I'm writing to the City about it.

  11. Regarding Lynn's suggestion to the council:

    Credentials should not be the criteria to judge the validity of the conclusion regarding the tree removals. A thorough and transparent analysis based on evidence should be used to make such decisions.

  12. I would agruge that that both transparency and credentials are important. Most of the City's top Managers do not have the credentials they were required to have when they get their jobs. These credentials are well spelled out in the General Plan. However, when it was brought up by me many years ago, I received a lot of negative comments by some people at the City and the City Council. Let's face it, the City only follows the General plan when it suits them to do it. I would post my name, but I have taken enough heat over the Great Encintias Tre Debacle so I will post as Anonymous as was suggested by one City Staff member. You all know who I am anyway.

  13. Getting a job and making decisions are two different things.

    Credentials could be used to determine who gets the job but it is unwise to not require those making the decision to be able to justify each decision. Certainly it should be easier for someone adequately trained to explain their justification.

  14. If one didn't get the job in the first place, because they did not meet the City's criterion, there might be less controversy over their decisions. Part of the City's requirements for a Manager Position, is a Masters Degree in the field, and having some kind of background that can be checked out. One could learn a bit about how they did in other jobs. Kerry Miller comes to mind. Of course this could only happen if the General Plan was actually used as a legal document, and not just a guide, to be changed "williy nilly". IE; No View Ordinance, hence No agreement with certain people to honor something that does not legally exist, and only a few get to use.


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