No Representatives from the Friends of OB Library, Historical Society, Town Council, or Mainstreet Association at Hearing
There was a disappointing turnout of Ocean Beach residents and businesspeople today at the City’s Budget and Finance Committee hearing. There was literally two OB residents present at this morning’s meeting. The Clairemont library had a number of supporters, plus sitting in the back of the large room were organizers from the city-wide library coalition-in-forming.
The meeting, part of a series of 5 community-input hearings set up by Councilmember Tony Young and the Mayor’s office, was held in the Committee room on the 12th floor of City Hall downtown San Diego. It was the only hearing scheduled in the morning during the workweek – the rest were set up in four Council Districts either at night or on Saturdays. Councilmember Kevin Faulconer representing OB’s District 2 sits on the Committee, as does Councilmembers Young, DeMiao and Gloria.
The poor showing from Ocean Beach was downplayed by the city-wide organizers who have been pleased with the attendance at the other hearings. (For some reason Districts 1, 2, 6 and 8 did not have hearings in their districts.)
Yet, the presence of only two people from Ocean Beach at the hearing – despite pleas and announcements from organizers, this blog and others for over a month – does not bode well for our community. No leadership from the OB Historical Society nor from the Friends of the OB Library were there. No one from the OB Town Council or from the Mainstreet Association were in the room. There was one recent member of the Friends and this reporter from this blog, that’s it.
In contrast, the community had turned out in mass back last fall when Mayor Sanders first placed the OB branch library on the budgetary chopping block. The community’s overwhelming response had spurned Faulconer to take a leading role in ensuring cut-backs do not touch the libraries.
At this morning’s hearing, Mr. Faulconer was very adamant about keeping the OB and Clairemont branches open, and stating very pointedly that during hard times, libraries are needed even more.
There is one more meeting that OBceans and other City residents can attend: tomorrow, Thursday Feb. 26th, from 6 to 8 pm at Lewis Middle School at 5170 Greenbrier Avenue in the 92110 zip area – in District 7.