“Yes” on Props B & C is the Way to Support the Barrio Logan Community

by on May 31, 2014 · 7 comments

in Civil Rights, Environment, From the Soul, Health, History, Organizing, Politics, San Diego

Props B n C vote Yes -edby Ernie McCray

Here we go.

Same old same old politics in San Diego. The “Big Boys” have to get their way. They want us to vote “No” in opposition to a plan that was created to make a community healthy and safe.

And mayor, Kevin Faulconer, who has billed himself as an “independent” leader, has, as such, been going around talking about how when Propositions B & C are voted down, “it will be our opportunity to pass a plan that works to protect our families, to protect our economy.”

Hey, dude, we already have a plan to keep toxics, pollutants, carcinogens and flammable chemicals, a safe distance away from Barrio Logan schools, playgrounds, and homes. So what does your plan look like? Oh, you don’t have one? And a new plan can’t happen for at least a year?

The Barrio Logan community worked diligently for years to bring about reasonable land use and zoning changes and it happened. It’s on the books right now. There’s a five-block buffer zone that bans new residential and industrial suppliers, while allowing such existing uses to remain in place and expand by no more than 20 percent.

But the shipbuilding industry fumes and whines. They don’t like any restrictions put on them, be they fair-minded or not and the prospect of having to apply for conditional use permits, so someone can keep an eye on them, absolutely ties their stomachs in knots. All the big players want a “compromise,” they say, which in the way they look at things would mean a community has to give up something that’s precious to them.

Ex-mayor, Jerry Sanders, calls what is now in place “bad for both residents and businesses” and Len Herring, a retired admiral who oversaw the San Diego naval command says “Let us try to do this again.” We called that kind of power play “overs” when I was a kid and things didn’t go our way.

And power play it is, all the way. But if we, as a community-at-large, really want to get our city back on track as one that is progressive and inclusive in its thinking, then we’ve got to promote “Yes” on B & C. Like crazy.

We have to dedicate ourselves righteously to what is morally right, to what makes us all safe in our communities, no matter our economic situations or ethnicities.

We have to understand that Barrio Logan has one of the highest rates of asthma in the county and the highest toxic releases which puts residents at risk for not only respiratory illnesses, but skin irritations and problems that can effect people developmentally. And what’s in the plan we have now is geared to protecting children and the environment from such realities.

We have to listen carefully when residents like Elva Martinez tell us “I lived right next to Master Plating. My son was very ill and he improved almost immediately when they left. I know toxic businesses near our homes are the reason residents and children are getting sick. And now we’re not just talking about this one business, but a plan for all of Barrio Logan, one that benefits the industries and the people.”

The truth is dozens of facilities, just like Master Plating, still exist today in Barrio Logan and they are grandfathered in and allowed to stay but “new” polluters would not be allowed in the newly established residential zones. Over time, implementation of the “Community Plan Update” will transform the neighborhood, improve children’s health and create new jobs. This would break a 35 year history of toxic land-use planning that allowed houses, parks and schools to intermingle with polluting industrial properties.

If the plan passes on June 3rd, it will finally separate industrial establishments and residential neighborhoods in the interest of breathable air, affordable community housing and support for the maritime workforce.

That should be compromise enough for everybody concerned.

Barrio Logan has earned our support in this struggle. They’ve shown us how to take on the powers-that-be. Our “Yes” vote on B & C is a vote for everybody having a chance to live with dignity.

[Ed.: Here also is Jim Miller’s take on Props B & C.]

Props B n C vote Yes -sm

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Joe S May 28, 2014 at 2:19 pm

This article is just wrong. Developers want to build condos and retail next to the shipyards, that is what a yes vote is in favor of. The shipyards correctly fear that if new condos or retail goes in, then they will soon be forced out. The shipyards are correct. Check out the Del Webb case that went to Supreme Court. Del Webb built homes next to an existing cement plant in AZ. Then sued to shut down the plant because it was noisy and dusty. Del Webb won and the cement plant closed. The shipyards are also noisy and dusty. But shipyards have great jobs, and the Navy uses them. We in San Diego lose a lot if the shipyards leave. We lose only a little, if we have a few less condos. Vote No !

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avatar Ernie McCray May 28, 2014 at 7:45 pm

The shipyards are going nowhere. Do you realize the power they have in this city?

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avatar Brent Beltran May 29, 2014 at 12:33 pm

The current plan from 1978 allows developments in Barrio Logan. The plan that was adopted by the city council allows them. The plan the shipyards were in favor of allowed them as well. This issue has nothing to do with developing condos in Barrio Logan. All the plans allow that. This plan and B & C is about creating a buffer zone over time between heavy industry and residents. It doesn’t directly affect the shipyards. Those are going nowhere.

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avatar Ernie McCray May 29, 2014 at 12:48 pm

Tell it like it is.

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avatar KB May 29, 2014 at 1:14 pm

Joe… the community planning process took over 5 years and $3 million of our taxpayer dollars. The Navy itself came to San Diego and took no position on this – it said that whatever happens in Barrio Logan is not of consequence to its future decisions. The shipyards aren’t leaving, this plan doesn’t ask them to, and on the contrary they’d add up to 5000 jobs because of it. As a matter of fact, they’re thriving right now and nowhere close to shutting down! Don’t believe it? See Gary Robbins’ December 13, 2013 article in the UT on employment soaring at the shipyards.

In any case, for anyone who takes the time to understand what’s really happening here, there’s no alternative but voting Yes on Props. B & C. At the end of the day it’s what the community wants, and it came through a textbook compromise with all stakeholders.

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avatar Carmen Franklin May 29, 2014 at 1:43 pm

Superior Court judge ruled that Shipyard Repair Association violated the state code with misleading claims and voter petitions. Yet these guys continue to lie: Sanders, Faulconer, John Alvarado, Shipyard Repair Association. Joe S. the shipyards are diverting your attention as planned. The shipyards are’t going anywhere. Jobs will not be lost and the economy will not fail due to the Community Plan that Proposition B & C support. The one block buffer zone will seperate industry from residential zoning. Shipyards reject B & C because they want to continue to expand into areas where there are already homes. 60% or more of the residents have been pushed out since the 1960’s when industry was allowed in. In the 1920’s this was one of the few places were people of color were zoned to live in. Corporate bullying and lobbying should stop.

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avatar Carmen Franklin May 29, 2014 at 1:55 pm

Check out the contamination in the area. This does not include the air data. Please vote Yes on Prop B & C. http://geotracker.waterboards.ca.gov/map/?CMD=runreport&myaddress=92113

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