Environment

Niagara-Bacon Area Quickly Becoming OB’s New Hot Spot

August 22, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Niagara-Bacon Area Quickly Becoming OB’s New Hot Spot

By Matthew Wood

Move over, Newport Avenue. There’s a new hot spot in Ocean Beach.

OK, nothing’s taking over for OB’s main drag in terms of businesses and foot traffic. But if you walk just a block south on Bacon Avenue, you might be surprised at the renaissance of business and shopping.

The long-perceived notion that the only businesses that can survive have to be on Newport is quickly diminishing. That’s evident with the addition of Bar 1502 – the new incarnate of the immensely popular OB Noodle House just eight or so blocks down – at the southeast corner of Bacon and Niagara. It now gives a solid restaurant option at each corner of that intersection, providing ample opportunities for businesses on the block to attract traffic.

“It’s awesome to see,” said Bar 1502 owner Steven Yeng, who passed up offers to open up shop on Newport. For him, the location is a personal dream come true, as it is just steps from his boyhood house.

Read the full article → 7 comments

Watch the Video of the Guy Who Put “Sucks” in the SeaWorld Freeway Sign

August 21, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Watch the Video of the Guy Who Put “Sucks” in the SeaWorld Freeway Sign

Steve-O took 2 days and 5 efforts to place “Sucks” in the SeaWorld freeway exit sign last May. He’s a star already. He released this video of his efforts and it has gone viral.

It’s hilarious. Steve got help in climbing up and taping the word “SUCKS” over the mileage part of the giant green sign near the I-5 exit. So, it read “SeaWorld Sucks”.

Read the full article → 4 comments

New Online Journal Asks “Is OB Slacking?” Because There’s No Protests at CVS

August 21, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for New Online Journal Asks “Is OB Slacking?” Because There’s No Protests at CVS

Editor: There’s a new online journal, “Our City”, which has taken a crack at Ocean Beach with a recent article titled “Is O.B. slacking?” With photos of CVS under construction, the OB Starbucks, Hodad’s, and the new condo construction on Abbott, the article delves into why there haven’t been any local protests of the new in-coming CVS Pharmacy in the old Apple Tree market building.

They ask:

What, no protests? No nasty bumper stickers? No nothing?

A chain store is coming to Ocean Beach, and there’s little sign of any kind of major backlash against this latest corporate invasion.

Their conclusion is interesting. …

Read the full article → 10 comments

The Grand Experiment at Voice of San Diego

August 21, 2014 by Source

Womans Democratic Logo

Editor: This is the latest in a series titled, “Who Runs San Diego?“. The last few articles have focused on San Diego’s media.

By Linda Perine / Democratic Woman’s Club

When Voice of San Diego (VOSD) began online publication nearly a decade ago the excitement in progressive San Diego was palpable. Here, finally, was an answer to the biased reporting that had been a hallmark of the UT for years (even before it was purchased by Doug Manchester).

The world of journalism was being revolutionized as the print media model became too expensive and cumbersome to compete in an instant access world. Slate and Salon opened their digital doors, and it seemed a new dawn of accountable news reporting was upon us.

San Diego journalist/entrepreneur Neil Morgan and Buzz Woolley founded VOSD.

Read the full article → 0 comments

Councilman Ed Harris: ‘My Issues for the second half of my term.’

August 21, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for Councilman Ed Harris: ‘My Issues for the second half of my term.’

Editor: The following is by Councilman Ed Harris of District 2 of the City Council. Harris represents Ocean Beach, Point Loma, Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Mission Bay, and other communities. His term representing the District ends in early December 2014.

By Councilman Ed Harris
As summer wraps up and the second half of my council term gets under way, I wanted to share some information and provide you with an update from my City Council District 2 office.

  • Illegal Medical Marijuana Dispensaries — Last month when I met with representatives from the City Attorney’s Office, Neighborhood Code Enforcement and Neighborhood Services, I learned there were 63 illegal marijuana dispensaries that remained open in the city, with 17 of those located in District 2. Neighborhood Code Enforcement and the City Attorney’s Office are actively working on getting these storefronts closed. …
Read the full article → 4 comments

Air Force Helicopters Too Close to Ocean Beach Residents

August 20, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for Air Force Helicopters Too Close to Ocean Beach Residents

A local OB man has complained to the media about low-flying military helicopters. Jim Baird sent a video to Channel 10News and was interviewed by their reporter.

Baird claims the helos are flying under 200 feet, whereas experts say the aircraft must be no closer than 500 feet to vessels, people or buildings. His video confirms his observation. Baird told the station:

“They were scary close. I mean, you could feel the pulsation of the blades on your body. And I was just standing there with my palms up and my hands out like this asking them, ‘What are you doing?!’ And they flew by.”

Read the full article → 7 comments

The Drought – Basic Q and A

August 19, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for The Drought – Basic Q and A

We Haven’t Come Close to Meeting Conservation: Water Supply Q & A with Waterkeeper Matt O’Malley

by Matt O’Malley / San Diego Coastkeeper

With the worst drought in recorded history parching the state, water and water sourcing options are hot topics. Join us in a chat with Waterkeeper Matt O’Malley, who discusses the Colorado River, future water prospects and more.

Why is water considered the lifeblood of the Southwestern US?

Water is vital to almost everything we do, in particular the Colorado River is vital to our everyday existence. The reality is that most of the Southwest is desert, but we don’t live as though it is. Instead we try to make it look and live like regions that get much more rainfall – such as Hawaii or Florida.

Read the full article → 4 comments

News at the Beach You Might Have Missed …

August 18, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for News at the Beach You Might Have Missed …

Was Sunday’s Broken Water Main in Ocean Beach or Point Loma? Local Media Still Confused About Boundaries of OB

Over the weekend, there was a serious water main break in the Peninsula …

Despite “Upgrades” – Protests Still Continue at SeaWorld

The protesters were back at SeaWorld San Diego on Sunday, August 17th, despite the theme park’s announcement just recently that it was going to build larger tanks for its killer whales, …

Baby Whale Leaves Mission Bay Because It’s Too Stinky

In the middle of last week, a baby gray whale was seen cruising into Mission Bay, right next to Ocean Beach. The whale was spotted surfacing in the bay sometime the morning of Wed., the 13th of August, according to CBS. …

AND MORE INSIDE …

Read the full article → 3 comments

SeaWorld San Diego to Build ‘Bigger Bathtubs’ for Its Killer Whales

August 15, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for SeaWorld San Diego to Build ‘Bigger Bathtubs’ for Its Killer Whales

In response to the public pressure that has decreased its attendance and finances due to awareness of how its orcas are treated, SeaWorld has announced that it will “upgrade” its facilities for its killer whales. Larger tanks will be built along with “water treadmill” systems to give them exercise.

According to a Wall Street Journal article published today, SeaWorld is spending millions to build the new enclosures – beginning in San Diego:

The company plans to upgrade the killer whale tanks at three of its theme parks, beginning with the San Diego location. The new enclosure in San Diego will be almost double the size of the current one, holding about 10 million gallons of water and extending to a depth of 50 feet. The company wouldn’t specify the cost of the upgrades, only saying it would be several hundred million dollars.

Our lucky San Diego orcas will now have new exercise equipment

Read the full article → 9 comments

Who Runs San Diego? Papa Doug the Kingmaker

August 14, 2014 by Source

Who Runs San Diego? A Project of the Democratic Women's ClubBy Eva Posner / Democratic Woman’s Club

Last week we provided an overview of Doug Manchester, the U-T, and the influence this combination has on the electorate of San Diego County.

This week, the goal is to delve a bit deeper, using a recent issue to illustrate the intensity of collusion with the publisher of the region’s largest paper and other powers that be.

From Voice of San Diego:

“It was Saturday, Aug. 31. No Republican had announced his or her intention to run to replace Mayor Bob Filner, whose term in office ended quietly the night before.

“A group of about 30 of the city’s most influential conservatives and right-of-center business representatives assembled at developer Tom Sudberry’s La Jolla estate.”

Read the full article → 7 comments

Bad Day at Blackfish Rock – SeaWorld Now Says Its Losing Visitors and Money

August 14, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Bad Day at Blackfish Rock – SeaWorld Now Says Its Losing Visitors and Money

SeaWorld Shares Drop 30%

It was a bad day yesterday, Wednesday, August 13, for SeaWorld, as company execs admitted for the very first time that the aquatic theme parks are losing visitors and money due to the film “Blackfish” – the movie about SeaWorld mistreating orcas. Almost immediately SeaWorld shares dropped 30%.

Up to now, SeaWorld – which has 11 theme parks across the country – has denied that its earnings and numbers of customers have declined due to “Blackfish”.

Yet they had to admit the losses in the company’s financial results for the second quarter of 2014. The losses are due to a drop in people coming to their “destination-parks” – like SeaWorld San Diego. With audiences in decline and sales of everything from tickets and products affected, the company reported:

Attendance of 6.6 million, a 0.3% increase versus the second quarter of 2013” – plus

Read the full article → 8 comments

Jane Gawronski: “We can preserve our community if we maintain conformance to current code.”

August 13, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for Jane Gawronski: “We can preserve our community if we maintain conformance to current code.”

Editor: This is the final speech we are publishing given by Ocean Beach planners at the historic City Council hearing on the OB Community Plan on July 29th – this is by Jane Gawronski, former Chair of the Planning Board and current Board member.

By Jane Gawrsonski

My name is Jane Gawronski and my husband and I live on Coronado Avenue in Ocean Beach. You might remember me from when I tried to become one of you when there was a vacancy in District 2.

We moved to Ocean Beach in 1974, jobs took us out of OB in the 80s and we were very happy to be able to return to OB in 1998. I am a member of the Ocean Beach Historical Board, past chair of the Ocean Beach Planning Board, a board member of the Ocean Beach Community Development Corporation and a volunteer for the Ocean Beach MainStreet Association.

We own 6 properties in Ocean Beach which have 16 rental cottages with 5 of the cottages over 100 years old. We want the original language to stay in the OB Community Plan to protect the ambiance and attractiveness of OB. This language is what the OB Community, the City Staff, and the City Attorney agreed to.

Read the full article → 2 comments

San Diego Protesters in Mission Beach to Urge California Coastal Commission to Halt Offshore Fracking – Wed., Aug 13

August 12, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for San Diego Protesters in Mission Beach to Urge California Coastal Commission to Halt Offshore Fracking – Wed., Aug 13

Hazmat-suit wearing San Diego protesters to highlight dangers of dumping fracking chemicals into the ocean

From San Diego 350:

As the California Coastal Commission meets in San Diego, hazmat suit-wearing protesters with SanDiego350 and the Center for Biological Diversity will urge commissioners to halt fracking to protect the state’s precious oceans, wildlife, and beaches.

Protesters want the Coastal Commission to stop oil companies from fracking offshore wells and dumping dangerous fracking chemicals directly into California’s ocean. Offshore fracking involves blasting water and industrial chemicals into the sea-floor at pressures high enough to crack geologic formations and release oil and gas.

Read the full article → 0 comments

The Hitchiker’s Guide to Ocean Beach

August 12, 2014 by Citizen Cane
Thumbnail image for The Hitchiker’s Guide to Ocean Beach

Editor: We’re reposting a series we published a few years ago entitled “Hitchiker’s Guide to Ocean Beach“- a series of stories to give people a view of Ocean Beach that can’t be found in the usual tourist guide books, by a knowledgeable local who goes by the nom de plume of Citizen Cane.

Here they are in order of publication :

The Hitchhikers’ Guide to Ocean Beach: Attraction #1- The Sideways Tree

Our first attraction is the Sideways Tree of Ocean Beach.

The tree is in plain view across the street from the Holy Trinity Church on Sunset Cliffs Boulevard near Brighton Avenue.

It’s rarely noticed by the people passing by.
(COME INSIDE FOR THE COMPLETE SERIES)

Read the full article → 2 comments

Isn’t the U.S. Pot Thing Frustrating? Great Success, Popular Support and Ugly Backlash

August 12, 2014 by Source

potprohibitionThe nation has a split personality when it comes to pot.

By Don Hazen, April M. Short, Jan Frel, Steve Rosenfeld, and Tana Ganeva / AlterNet

In the robust efforts to legalize and decriminalize cannabis in the U.S., a slightly modified line from Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities applies: “These are the best of times, these are the worst of times.”

Despite huge success on many fronts, including legalization in two states with boffo success in Colorado (and two more states likely on the way), pot arrests remain astronomically high across the country.

More than 750,000 were recorded in 2012, with pot arrests actually increasing in …

Read the full article → 3 comments

Medical Marijuana Patients Sue San Diego and Coastal Commission Over Number of Dispensaries Allowed

August 11, 2014 by Source

By Robert Kahn / Courthouse News Service

Marijuana patients claim in court that San Diego and the California Coastal Commission will foul the air, snarl traffic and force people to grow marijuana indoors, wasting energy and increasing global warming, because of their wrongheaded decision to allow no more than 36 marijuana co-ops in the city.

The Union of Medical Marijuana Patients sued the Coastal Commission and San Diego on Aug. 1, in San Diego County Court.

The rather bizarre and quite technical complaint challenges the Coastal Commission’s June 11 approval of a San Diego city ordinance of March 25, which authorized medical marijuana co-ops in the city.

The zoning-oriented ordinance allows medical marijuana co-ops only in certain industrial and commercial zones, and requires buffer zones between co-ops and residential areas.

Read the full article → 1 comment

Mayor Faulconer’s First 100 Days: Veto Minimum-Wage Ordinance and Stalling on City’s Environmental Policies

August 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Mayor Faulconer’s First 100 Days: Veto Minimum-Wage Ordinance and Stalling on City’s Environmental Policies

Mayor Kevin Faulconer has been in office now just a little over one hundred days. And if this start to his administration is an indicator, the remainder of his term as mayor may be cause for some very rough going for San Diego environmentalists and minimum-wage supporters.

Faulconer’s actions – or, rather, inactions, around environmental policies have made eco-advocates furious. (More on that below.)

To the more immediate news, today, Friday, the 8th day of August, Faulconer formally vetoed the minimum-wage and sick-day ordinance passed by the City Council on July 28th. The measure would if enacted increase the hourly minimum wage to $9.75 on Jan. 1, $10.50 in January 2016 and $11.50 in January 2017, plus it provided access to five earned sick days.

The Council, with a 6 to 3 current ratio of Dems to Repubs, is expected to over-ride the Mayor’s veto, and the measure will become law. But then, in turn, this is expected to set the stage for an extremely divisive referendum effort by businesses and the Chamber of Commerce seeking to overturn the ordinance – which will be placed on hold until the referendum issue is settled.

Read the full article → 3 comments

News and Notes in and around Ocean Beach

August 7, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for News and Notes in and around Ocean Beach

Local Point Lomans Nicole Burgess and Andy Hanshaw Appointed to City Bicycle Advisory Committee

Well-known bicycling enthusiast and local Point Loman Nicole Burgess was appointed to the City’s first-ever Bicycle Advisory Committee by the City Council. … .

Point Loma Planners Like the “New” Point Loma Village

In his article at The Peninsula Beacon on July 31, Dave Schwab reported that the Peninsula Community Planning Board unanimously approved – with a “thumbs up” – to the Point Loma Village, at their recent July meeting. …

Third Sexual Assault on Women in PB Since Mid-June

There’s now been three sexual assaults on women in Pacific Beach over a 6 week period, since basically mid-June. The last one occurred on late Saturday night, August 2nd, when a woman …

Read the full article → 0 comments

Short Video of City Council Vote on OB Community Plan

August 6, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

Here’s a short video montage – COME INSIDE FOR VID – by Anthony Palmiotto on last weeks City Council vote on the OB Community Plan – back on Tuesday, July 29th. Palmiotto is the OB Town Council’s Community Relations Chair.

Here, Palm has captured several memorable scenes, especially those moments as Gretchen Newsom, the OB Town Council president was reading off the list of OB organizations that support the Plan, and as members of the audience – mostly OBceans – stood as the name of their group was read.

Read the full article → 0 comments

Orcas Saving Humans

August 6, 2014 by Marc Snelling
Thumbnail image for Orcas Saving Humans

By Marc Snelling

Oral history of orcas saving humans stretches out for a millennia.

Haida, Tlingit, Nuxalk and other peoples of the Northwest have kept stories and names alive for many generations.

For example, Natsilane being saved from attempted drowning by his jealous brothers is a Haida and Tlingit story.

Nuxalk stories of Ista and Patsallht recount traveling with killer whales and how they got their black color. K’aa gwaay, the five finned killer whale of legends is carved on totem poles such as Ts’aahl Llnagaay at the Haida Heritage Center in Kay Llnagaay (Skidegate BC).

Read the full article → 3 comments

Advisory Council: Safety in Sunset Cliffs Natural Park

August 6, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for Advisory Council: Safety in Sunset Cliffs Natural Park

Report of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council

By Lois Lane

At their recent meeting on August 4th, the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Advisory Council welcomed Lt. Jason Weeden of the San Diego Police Department, on his first day as a Lieutenant. He will be replacing Lt. Natalie Stone in her Western Division duties, as she has moved to investigations.

Lt. Weeden, with a background on the SWAT team and the Vice Squad, seems very well equipped to take on whatever Ocean Beach and Sunset Cliffs Park have in store for him.

The topic for the evening was “Safety in the Park”, and Community Relations Officer David Surwilo was there to explain what was happening in the beach area, and how the community and the police can work more effectively together.

His message: “Report, report, report!

Read the full article → 4 comments

Disappearance of Ocean Plastics Is Nothing to Celebrate

August 6, 2014 by Source

By Sarah “Steve” Mosko / San Diego Free Press-

fish plasticYou’d think that finding far less plastic pollution on the ocean’s surface than scientists expected would be something to cheer about.

The reality, however, is that this is likely bad news, for both the ocean food web and humans eating at the top. Ingestion of tiny plastic debris by sea creatures likely explains the plastics’ disappearance and exposes a worrisome entry point for risky chemicals into the food web.

Except for a transient slowdown during the recent economic recession, global plastics consumption has risen steadily since plastic materials were introduced in the 1950s and subsequently incorporated into nearly every facet of modern life.

Read the full article → 0 comments

Reverberations from Historic City Council Vote on OB Community Plan

August 5, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Reverberations from Historic City Council Vote on OB Community Plan

The reverberations from last week’s historic City Council vote July 29th to approve the OB Community Plan have yet to be felt – other than the celebrations -, either in OB or throughout the City, but the vote will have consequences – good ones – for two or three decades.

Plus the dust hadn’t settled after the unanimous vote, when the question was raised ‘What’s next? What is the next hurdle the Plan must take before it becomes a reality?’

The short answer is that the Plan goes before the California Coastal Commission in October, according to city staff.

Meanwhile, the vote was a clear victory for Ocean Beach but it was also a win for other communities around San Diego. Let’s examine this.

OBviously, with a new community plan, OB will be affected for the next 20 to 30 years. What else does the vote mean? For Ocean Beach, the vote did several things.

First, it vindicated the resistance by the OB Planning Board …

Read the full article → 4 comments

Extreme Weather Watch: July 2014 – Record Flames, Record Drought

August 5, 2014 by Source

Extreme Weather WatchBy John Lawrence / San Diego Free Press

On the last day of July in California, Exceptional Drought – the highest category of drought – which covered 36% of the state the previous week, covered 58% of the state as August began.

With water reserves being at all time lows, a water main broke in LA spewing 20 million gallons of water into the UCLA campus, submerging 400 cars in an underground parking structure and flooding Pauley Pavillion so bad that a new floor has to be put in.

How ironic such a massive waste of water happened right in the middle of a colossal drought.

Read the full article → 0 comments

OB Planning Board Agenda – Wed., Aug. 6

August 5, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for OB Planning Board Agenda – Wed., Aug. 6

Here’s the agenda for the Ocean Beach Planning Board which meets Wednesday night, August 6th. The Board meets at 6pm sharp in the OB Rec Center, 4726 Santa Monica Ave.

It’s all fairly self-explanatory. There will be an update on the historic City Council vote on the OB Community Plan last week.

And something that is on alot of OBceans’ minds as they drive around the village – the replacement of water and sewer pipes in and around OB – is also on the agenda in terms of a report from the contractor.

Read the full article → 0 comments

John Ambert: “OB Is Classic California”

August 4, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for John Ambert: “OB Is Classic California”

Editor: The OB Rag has been publishing the speeches of the various OB planners and other village leaders given at the City Council hearing on the Ocean Beach Community Plan, Tuesday, July 29th. Here is John Ambert’s speech.

My name is John Ambert and I am an architect, I am the Vice Chair of the Ocean Beach Planning Board, and I am a born and raised as an Ocean Beach native.

There are three reasons why you should support the Ocean Beach Community Plan as presented to you today:

First, because OB is classic California

Second because FAR variances destroy the character of beach neighborhoods;

and third, because coastal redevelopment at this scale, pushes the residents out of their community.

Read the full article → 0 comments

Two-Story OB Apartment Complex on West Pt Loma Sold

August 4, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for Two-Story OB Apartment Complex on West Pt Loma Sold

A two-story, 8-unit apartment complex on West Pt Loma Blvd was just sold for $1,675,000, cash.

The single building complex is located at 5065 West Pt Loma and is a 4,224-square-foot apartment building with only 8 bedrooms and bathrooms.

The building was originally constructed in 1959 on a 5,000-square-foot lot …

Read the full article → 6 comments

North Pacific Dispatches: Chronologically Confused

August 4, 2014 by Source

Third in a Series About Life on a Research Vessel

imageBy Lori Saldaña

On board ship we operate on 2 time zones: Universal (Greenwich) time,8 hours ahead of local (Pacific) time, used when entering all research data for recording purposes, and California time for our work/sleep/eat schedule.

This can cause some confusion: the computers in the ship’s science lab show the universal time. This where all the incoming data from the CTD is received at 24 bits of Information per second once the device is lowered overboard, and we write down key data as the device is lowered and raised.

Read the full article → 0 comments

In Paradise – for the Time Being

August 4, 2014 by Jim Miller

Devils_Postpile_National_Monument_near_Mammoth_LakesBy Jim Miller

I recently had the pleasure of spending some time at Devils Postpile National Monument basking in the stunning beauty of that geological marvel and the accompanying reminder of the deep time that underlies the shallow surface history that we mistake for all that is.

Indeed, if there is a heaven, places like this are surely part of it. Nonetheless, while pondering the unintentional artistry of glaciers it was impossible not to notice how dry the mountains are now after several years of drought.

In and around Yosemite, the creeks, rivers, and waterfalls are drying up far earlier than usual, and the forests are perpetually vulnerable to fire.

Read the full article → 0 comments

Mindy Pellissier: “We OBceans are a resilient and tenacious lot.”

August 1, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for Mindy Pellissier: “We OBceans are a resilient and tenacious lot.”

Editor: The OB Rag is publishing the speeches of the various OB planners and other village leaders given at the City Council hearing on the Ocean Beach Community Plan, Tuesday, July 29th. This is by Mindy Pellissier, long-time OB planner, Co-chair of Sub-committee on OB Community Plan Update, plus co-owner of the Dog Beach Dog Wash.

My name is Mindy Pellissier. I am a home owner and business owner — & a proud OBcean for more than 20 years.

I have also been a dedicated participant in the OB Planning process & several community organizations.

Read the full article → 6 comments