October 2016

Celebrate the OB Rag’s 9th Birthday!

October 31, 2016 by Staff

OB Rag birthday cake

The OB Rag just celebrated its 9th birthday this past weekend. The online newspaper for Ocean Beach got its start in late October 2007 when Patty Jones and Frank Gormlie got serious about creating a political blog for OB.

The online OB Rag is a take-off of the original grassroots underground newspaper, the OB People’s Rag, which began publishing in 1970 – and continued for 6 years. Gormlie was the original publisher of the newspaper. The 9th anniversary was quietly celebrated over the weekend with champagne amidst a small crowd of Rag Ocean Beach supporters at a house above Sunset Cliffs.

Here are some excerpts from our “About” page: …

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Save the Date! OB Planning Board to Discuss Ebers and Greene Project – Wed., Nov. 2nd

October 31, 2016 by Staff

The next Ocean Beach Planning Board regular meeting will discuss this controversial project at Ebers and Greene Streets in northeast OB.

All meetings are open to the public. Unless otherwise noted in the agenda, the meeting will be held at:

Ocean Beach Recreation Center
4726 Santa Monica Ave
San Diego CA 92107
Wednesday November 2, 6PM

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Looking Deeper Into the Plans of the Ebers and Greene Project

October 31, 2016 by Source

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Other than maintenance work, there should be no new construction at the site until the city issues a permit to build.

By Geoff Page

After finally getting a chance to review the plans for the Ebers and Greene Street project, I got the story behind the requirement that the developer execute a habitable accessory structure form. It wasn’t quite what I expected – but the reality is very odd.

For starters, there is no approved permit on the project so the developer is not supposed to be doing any construction – but clearly is. The Inspection Notice that was issued on the project required the developer to make an “angled building envelope” on the front and the Greene Street side.

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Special San Diego City Council Hearing on Short Term Vacation Rentals – Tues., Nov. 1st

October 31, 2016 by Staff
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The San Diego City Council will hold a Special Hearing on short-term vacation rentals in single family residential zones on Tuesday, November 1, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. in Golden Hall. Due to the anticipated interest, Golden Hall will open at 9:00 a.m., and public comment on the issue will be limited to one minute per person. (Golden Hall is in the same complex as City Hall.)

It is greatly anticipated that the hearing will focus on an edit to the San Diego Municipal Code proposed by Councilwomen Sheri Lightner and Lori Zapf during a press conference last Friday, October 28th, an edit they say will address community concerns about the vacation rentals in single family neighborhoods. The edit will clarify that STVRs are currently not permitted in Single Family Residential neighborhoods.

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Tom Hayden, Courageous Warrior for Peace

October 31, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Tom Hayden, Courageous Warrior for Peace

By Marjorie Cohn /Consortium News – truthout

When Tom Hayden died on Oct. 23, we lost a courageous warrior for peace and equality. Hayden was on the front lines of nearly every major progressive struggle for more than 50 years. Vilified by the Right and at times criticized from the Left, Hayden remained steadfast in his commitment to social, economic and racial justice.

An activist, political theorist, organizer, writer, speaker and teacher, Hayden was a Freedom Rider in the South during the 1960s; a founder of Students for a Democratic Society; a leader of the anti-Vietnam War movement; a community organizer; a negotiator of a gang truce in Venice, California; the author of more than 19 books; and an elected official in California for nearly two decades.

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OB Town Council Gears Up for the Holidays – Makes Call for Volunteers

October 31, 2016 by Source
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By Geoff Page / Special to the OB Rag

The OB Town Council (OBTC) held its regular public meeting on Wednesday, October 26th from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm at the Masonic Center, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. in Ocean Beach. There were approximately 25 people in attendance. The meeting started with non-agenda public comment when people may speak for two minutes on any topic that is not part of the official agenda.

There was a representative from the group Save Peninsula Trees (savepeninsulatrees@gmail.com), formed to protect the peninsula’s trees spurred on by the city’s Torrey pine removals on Saratoga Avenue in Ocean Beach.

Mara Elliott, a candidate for City Attorney in the upcoming election, then spoke. She as followed by a representative for a campaign finance reform group and the pastor of the Pt. Loma United Methodist Church.

The President, Gretchen Newsom, introduced the new board. Go to their website, to see a list of the 15 members. [Editor: Gretchen apparently has decided to luckily stick around for another term as president; Nate Bazydlo is the new Vice President; Melanie Williams is the new corresponding secretary; Corey Bruins is the recording secretary; and Andrew Waltz is the new community events committee chair.]

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Against Measure A – the Transportation Justice Argument

October 31, 2016 by Jim Miller

environmental Justice Pollution in San Diego communities

By Diane Takvorian

Voters Should Reject Measure A- This year San Diego voters have an opportunity to take a critical first step towards bringing San Diego into the 21st century. Right now, San Diego has an outdated and obsolete transportation system. Measure A will perpetuate that system for another 40 years!

Two generations of San Diegans will be stuck with this backward system instead of clean and just transportation if voters don’t give a resounding NO to Measure A on November 8.

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Local Muralist Celeste Byers Keeps Messages Alive in her Artwork

October 27, 2016 by Source

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By South OB Girl

As you exit Ocean Beach on Sunset Cliffs Boulevard, headed towards the 8 freeway, you may have noticed the mural covering the southern wall of Chris’s Liquor, right off the alley. That mural was done by the local, and extremely prolific artist, Celeste Byers.

And as you head back from walking on the OB Pier, you might notice the mural on the west-facing wall of Teeter’s at 5032 Niagara Ave. That is by Celeste too, and was a collaboration with Aaron Glasson.

Those two Ocean Beach murals are displayed in areas where many thousands of people see those walls in our community each week. But Celeste’s paint brushes have graced many walls throughout the world beyond OB — including Sri Lanka, Vietnam, New Zealand, Australia, and several cities in Mexico.

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Annual Green Spooktacula at the Ocean Beach Green Center – Sat., Oct. 29th

October 26, 2016 by Staff

Annual Green Spooktacula

at the Ocean Beach Green Center

Co-Hosted by The Climate Mobilization Coalition

Saturday October 29th

2:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Music, Speakers, Refreshments, Raffle, Bake Sale

costume contest!

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Halloween in OB

October 26, 2016 by Staff

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The Big Pumpkin makes an appearance on Santa Monica Avenue.

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Help Locate and Identify Torrey Pines in Ocean Beach and Point Loma

October 26, 2016 by Staff
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There is a group in Ocean Beach that is working to locate and identify Torrey Pines in OB and throughout the Peninsula.

Friends of Peninsula Trees are nominating Torreys for an Historical Heritage Tree designation – which gives them added protection if granted.

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OB Town Council Meeting Wednesday, October 26th

October 25, 2016 by Staff

obtc-iconThe OB Town Council is holding its regular public meeting on Wednesday, October 26th. The meeting starts at 7:00 pm and usually runs until 8:30 pm or so.

The meeting will be held at the Masonic Center, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. in Ocean Beach, CA 92107.

The formal agenda has not been made available when this was posted. See their website for updates.

New officers for the Board ought to be announced.

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Bernie Sanders: Now Is the Time to Stand Up to Big Pharma – Vote Yes on Prop. 61

October 25, 2016 by Source

big-pharma

Sanders Speaks Out in Support of Proposition 61, the California Drug Price Relief Act

By Bernie Sanders / Los Angeles Times RSN / October 21, 2016

Prescription drug prices in the United States are the highest in the world — by far. Californians on Nov. 8 have a chance to stand up to the pharmaceutical industry’s greed and spark a national movement to end this price-gouging. Today, no laws prevent drug companies from doubling or tripling prices. So they just do it. The most recent flagrant example is the emergency allergy injection, EpiPen. Its maker, Mylan, jacked up the price of this 40-year-old medication by 461% between 2007 and 2015. During that same period, compensation for Mylan’s CEO rose 671%. And that’s just one company and one drug.

Proposition 61, the California Drug Price Relief Act, would bar the state from paying more than the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs does for the same drugs.

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Measures K and L Make Sense for San Diego

October 25, 2016 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

Measures K and L are changes to the City Charter submitted through the efforts of the Alliance San Diego Mobilization Fund and the Independent Voter Project. Both groups have local experience in encouraging voter turnout.

These measures were championed by City Council President Sherri Lightner and placed on the November 2016 ballot by a vote of the City Council.

What they do in a nutshell is to shift the final decision making in elections to November. Measure K says the top two candidates as determined by primary voters for Mayor, City Council seats, and City Attorney advance to the general election. Measure L says citizen-sponsored initiatives and referendums belong on the November ballot.

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City to Remove Monterey Cypress Tree on 4800 Block of Del Mar in Ocean Beach

October 24, 2016 by Staff
Thumbnail image for City to Remove Monterey Cypress Tree on 4800 Block of Del Mar in Ocean Beach

The OB Rag today – Friday, October 21st – received a courtesy message that the City will be removing a Monterey Cypress tree at 4866 Del Mar Avenue on Friday, October 28th.

According to Anthony Santacroce, Senior Public Information Officer for the city, arborists –

“… have diagnosed it as dead and decaying at the roots, trunk and branches as well as suffering from a preponderance of wood boring insects. The assessments recommend the tree be removed immediately, as it cannot be rehabilitated and poses a public safety risk to both lives and property.”

Here is the message:

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San Diego Poised to Act on Short Term Vacation Rentals

October 24, 2016 by Staff

stvr-image-aug016-ed2Residents of the coastal neighborhoods who have been fighting short term vacation rentals (STVRs) are happy right now – relatively speaking – as it appears that the City of San Diego is finally posed to act on them.

One of the key organizations in this fight is Save San Diego Neighborhoods, and they are trying to mobilize their supporters for two critical meetings coming up, October 25th and November 1st.

From SSDN website:

First, on Tuesday, October 25, the Community Planners Committee (CPC) meeting will host City Council President Sherri Lightner. The CPC meets from 7 to 9 pm. at the Metropolitan Op. Ctr. II Auditorium, 9192 Topaz Way, San Diego.

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A Deplorable Crisis in Definitions in San Diego – City Attorney Candidates at PB Town Council

October 24, 2016 by Source
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Sub-Committee Report from the Pacific Beach Town Council Meeting, Oct 19, 2016

By Micaela Porte

In regards to the PB Town Council meeting last night with City Attorney Candidates, Robert Hickey and Mara Elliot, and discussion of Prop 64 (legalizing cannabis) and Prop 57 (criminal sentencing, non-violent crimes) among other things, it would seem that the City of San Diego is suffering from a deplorable crisis in definitions.

San Diego doesn’t know how to define:

  • visitor accommodations
  • night clubs
  • where the 30 ft height limit is measured from*
  • non-violent crimes.
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OBcentric Design Charrette – Tuesday, Oct. 25th

October 24, 2016 by Staff
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The “Movers and Shakers of Ocean Beach” are invited to an OBcentric design charrette – a local event on Tuesday, October 25th from 6-8pm, being hosted by the OB Planning Board and Main Street Association.

The charrette is is part of a month long celebration of architecture and design, Archtoberfest, sponsored by the AIA of San Diego.

This is a follow up to the Newport Visioning workshop held on August 24th, and will be held at Steve Lombardi’s Office, 5035 Newport Ave, San Diego, CA 92107

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A Remembrance to a Smoker Or Why to Vote YES on Proposition 56

October 24, 2016 by Judi Curry
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By Judi Curry

Seven years ago you left to go who knows where. The time of diagnosis and death was so very short. Sunday will be your birthday; cut short by the 3 packs a day you smoked for 30 years. Diagnosed with lung cancer after stopping smoking for 34 years, it still got you in the end.

I remember the day when the diagnosis was made, and I remember you saying that if you knew smoking would still get you, you never would have stopped. Your craved that cigarette for some 60 years, and often substituted Irish Whiskey (what else?) after dinner. What you really wanted was a smoke along with the Irish.

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“Death Cafe” at OB Library – Sat., Oct. 22nd

October 21, 2016 by Source
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Did you know that on Saturday, October 22nd – the Ocean Beach Library is hosting a “Death Cafe” at 2 pm?

Now what, you may ask, is a “Death Cafe”?

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New Problem Project in Ocean Beach? Check Out 4741 Del Mar

October 21, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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OB Planning Bd. approved Project Plans 2 Years Ago – But Local Residents Say What’s Being Built Is Different

Ocean Beach residents are concerned about another construction project that appears to be breaking the 30-foot height limit. They’re also afraid that the actual construction does not conform to the original plans that were submitted and approved by the city and the OB planners. This one is in south OB, at 4741 Del Mar Avenue. Locals have observed that the builders have added a solid deck wall above the house roof that is different from the approved plans the showed it below the roof line. Also, the roof line may also be above the 30 foot limit.

Some of these residents have contacted the OB Planning Board about the project and requested that they check out what is being constructed compared with the plans. Just about two years ago exactly, the OB Planning Board approved the project as presented – but it was a close vote, 7 to 5.

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Navy Dolphin Gitmo Rally – Sat., Oct. 22nd – Next to Spanish Landing

October 21, 2016 by Source

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They call themselves marine mammal protectors – the organizers of a rally this Saturday to protest what they call the Navy Dolphin Gitmo. Their goal, they say, is to “expedite humane end to Gitmo like Navy Marine Mammal Program due to tax waste, national security threat and inadequate dolphin/sea lion housing and care.”

From their press statement:

Navy Dolphin Rally

Welcome to ALL concerned, peaceful citizens, taxpayers, military spending/national security advocates, elected officials & marine mammal protectors! We invite you ALL to attend or support the Navy Dolphin Gitmo Rally!

WHEN: Oct. 22nd 9:30 am-1pm (10/22/16)

WHERE: San Diego @ Harbor Dr Bridge next to Spanish Landing across from San Diego Airport.

Rally event on facebook:

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Work Continues on Controversial Project at Ebers and Greene

October 21, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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New Drawings Still Label New Construction just As an “Addition”

Eyewitnesses report that up to 8 workers entered the property of the controversial project at Ebers and Greene Streets this morning – Friday, October 21st – and began doing various jobs at the site.

One worker was seen getting up on the roof and appeared to be removing some plywood. Curtis Nelson, the owner, was also seen on the site. The construction site is behind fencing that prevents any clear views of what’s going on – for at least the ground floor.

In fact, a few workers were seen on the site on this past Sunday, October 16th – the day after there was a rally of 60 OBceans protesting the project in front of the site.

This is the same site, of course, that a town hall meeting was held about on Wednesday night – the 19th, at the OB Rec Center.

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Dear Hillary Clinton, I haven’t been your biggest fan …

October 21, 2016 by Source

Hillary ClintonBy Jeeni Criscenzo / San Diego Free Press

I haven’t been one of your biggest fans and I still think that the DNC used some dirty tricks to defeat Bernie Sanders in the primaries, but today I’m ready to put that behind me. Until last night, my only reason to vote for you over Jill Stein would have been to make certain that Mr. Trump is not elected president of our country.

Since I live in California, I thought I had the luxury of waiting to see how the election was going in the rest of the county before casting my vote. And that was my plan – to wait until the last hour to choose you or Jill Stein. Since California is not a swing state, it was highly likely that I could have used my vote as a form of protest without risking Trump winning.

Wednesday night my plan changed. When I listened to Donald Trump hedge about ceding to the winner during the debate, I knew it isn’t enough just to make sure you win, it is paramount that you win in such overwhelming, indisputable numbers that Mr. Trump’s accusations of rigging look ludicrous.

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The Financialization of America: Wall Street Doesn’t Help Homeless

October 21, 2016 by John Lawrence

MoneyThe Business of America is No Longer Business — It’s Finance

By John Lawrence

The rich today are making money not from making things, but by manipulating money. This is being done in such a way that it is driving the inequality process. It is ruining the middle class while exporting their jobs.

The tax structure of the US engineered by Ronald Reagan, Alan Greenspan and their Republican followers has incentivized the creation of great wealth in a few hands while driving the majority of people into poverty.

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Ocean Beach’s Ranchos Is Moving – Charges Landlord with Racism

October 20, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

ob-ranchos-frontWe’ve been following what’s happening with OB’s vegetarian Mexican food restaurant, Ranchos, over these last couple of weeks with concern.

Now, we find out something dark has been going on. The owner of Ranchos has apparently posted signs in the windows explaining that they are moving – and why they are moving.

In hand-lettered signs – in places hard to decipher – , the Ranchos owner charges their landlord with racism and a hatred of Mexicans.

And the Ranchos owner says they will be moving in a month to another location in San Diego – and invites his loyal customers to a new place with mariachis – and fresh fish and lamb added to a new menu – with better prices. No address of a new location was listed.

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Nelco Properties Breaks Silence – Makes Statement about the Ebers and Greene Project

October 20, 2016 by Source
Thumbnail image for Nelco Properties Breaks Silence – Makes Statement about the Ebers and Greene Project

Nelco Properties – the developer of the controversial construction project in Ocean Beach at Ebers and Greene Streets has made a statement to the local press. We reprint it here without edit or comment (From CBS8 News:)

Full Statement on behalf of Nelco Properties:

Nelco Properties is a strong supporter of the Ocean Beach community and its residents. With this project we are working to beautify the community and bring increased home values to the surrounding neighborhood. The project conforms to all required municipal codes, city development regulations, and has obtained all required permits; it has been approved by City and County agencies.

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Ocean Beach Town Hall Demands “Stop Work” Order by Mayor for Ebers and Greene Project

October 20, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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Close to 70 people crowded into the Ocean Beach Recreation Center’s meeting room last night, Wednesday, October 19th, for a special Town Hall meeting on the controversial construction project at Ebers and Greene Streets.

The town hall-type gathering was called for at last weekend’s rally against the project, and the heads of both the OB and Peninsula Planning Boards had committed to help make it happen.

After nearly an hour and half of discussion on ‘what to do?’, the assembled residents fairly-unanimously decided to demand a “Stop Work” order by Mayor Faulconer on the project. No city official appeared – despite being invited – and no one from the developer was in attendance.

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Restaurant Review: Plant Power in Ocean Beach

October 20, 2016 by Judi Curry
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Restaurant Review

Plant Power
2204 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.
(Note: Menu has address at 22014 – )
San Diego, CA 92107
619-450-6845

I wasn’t going to do it. I knew that if I reviewed this restaurant there would be many comments – some favorable, but mostly unfavorable towards the review. However, I have been asked by so many people what I thought about it. I decided to “bite the bullet” and go.

My friend Barbara and I have talked about “Plant Power” for months. I should immediately point out that neither of us are vegans. We like our meats; we like our breads; we like so many things that are not offered at this restaurant. But we went in with an open mind and decided to order several items so that we could sample the menu.

To begin with I want to say that once you get into the parking lot (off of Voltaire) there was ample parking.

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Measure J: The Mission Bay Park Money Shuffle

October 20, 2016 by Doug Porter

mission-bay-vue-fgBy Doug Porter

Measure J seemed like another non-controversial proposal at first.

It extended the lifetime of an earlier ballot measure dedicating a portion of revenues from leases on properties at Mission Bay Park and shuffled the formula for allocating funds to include other regional parks.

The idea was for these revenues to pay for bonds to be used in capital improvement projects for Mission Bay Park and regional parks, including Balboa Park.

Needless to say, Balboa Park groups existing amidst crumbling buildings and other infrastructure shortcomings were thrilled.

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