Ocean Beach Town Council Provides a Much-Needed Forum for Residents

by on September 29, 2017 · 3 comments

in Ocean Beach

“Lifeguard of the Year” Trevor Wageman – on left with Sgt Lonnie Stephens of the San Diego lifeguards on right. That’s Paul of James Gang at the door. All photos by South OB Girl.

There was a slim audience inside the Masonic Center when the OB Town Council meeting got off the ground, Wednesday night, Sept. 27th, but by time the agenda entered the more prominent portions, it had swelled to nearly 60 – not including the dozen board members. And once again, the council provided a much-needed community forum for all kinds of issues of residents and businessowners, wannabe politicians and all those in the audience.

Here, below, are issues, news and events announced or raised.

Dusty Rhodes Park Contract and Trees

Not on the agenda, but raised during the public comment period, amidst an announcement of the Dusty Rhodes Park Rec Council meeting by a community council member, we found out some curious details about the park. Not only did no company bid on the maintenance contract for Dusty Rhodes put out by the city, the park is the only one in the city that has a private maintenance contract; all others are maintained by the city.  The meeting is Thursday, Sept. 28th.  The community rep, a long-time member of the park’s council, said she believes the reason for this requirement is because it’s a “passive park”. We also found out new trees will be planted to replace the dead and dying ones. It was also announced the Dusty Rhodes parking lot will be repaved.

Board officers: L to R: Marcus Turner, VP, Gretchen Newsom, President, Jon Carr, Recording Secretary

New Trees for Free and Shade Tree Brigade

Virginia Wilson has an easy form for you to fill out if you want to have the city plant a tree in the parkway in front of your home. You can reach her with the Save Peninsula Trees 619-225-1083 or  savepeninsulatrees@outlook.com  .

And there’s a Shade Tree Brigade Community Outreach Kickoff sponsored by Save Peninsula Trees on September 30th, Saturday , 10:00 a.m. at Ocean Beach Green Center, 4843 B Voltaire Street, Ocean Beach 92107. Gather at the Ocean Beach Green Center for coffee and bagels and a short briefing, and then go out into assigned preselected areas to share the information and materials needed for participating in the City Tree Program –  free trees and free tree plantings to Community Members that agree to water them until they are established.

Book Sale – Oct. 7th

Friends of the OB Library are hosting a huge book sale, Saturday, October 7th in front of the library.

STVR Day of Action

The City Council is having a showdown on deciding what to do about short term vacation rentals – Oct. 23rd. If you’re concerned about these types of mini-hotels, show up at City Hall.

Tim McClain

Great Community Platform Provided by OBTC

The public, non-agenda, comment period at the beginning of each OB Town Council  meeting is simply a great platform for the community provided by this group. People can get up and for 2 minutes say basically anything they wish – unless it’s a repeat of something just said, or inappropriate – which never happens. Usually people are nervous and very polite. Chair Gretchen Newsom goes out of her way to allow anyone a chance to say something. She does keep track of the 2 minutes, however.

Conrad Wear

Hep A Presentation

Tim McClain from Ron Roberts’s County Supervisor office and Conrad Wear from Lori Zapf’s office gave a presentation of the county and city response to the Hepatitis A crisis. McClain stated that county-wide, 42,000 vaccinations had been given. He also thinks the crisis will be around for 6 months.

They described recent efforts – such as the bleach-washing of areas in OB and other beach communities and of a major campaign to clean out the San Diego River. Homeless people will be taken to shelters, we were told.  The presentation also included the content of recent announcements (see here).

If you want a free vaccination, call 212.

Tent for Vets

Community Relations officer David Surwilo briefly described the  tent being set up for homeless vets at the old Midway post office property. These vets have already been vetted and will have access to folks from the VA. Surwilo also helped to explain “Mama Bear” is going to trial next week.

“Lifeguard of the Year” from OB and Lifeguard News

Sgt Lonnie Stephens of the San Diego lifeguards announced the City “Lifeguard of the Year” and introduced Trevor Wageman – a lifeguard from OB as that lifeguard.

Stephens also gave us a run-down of lifeguard statistics for August:

  • 180,000 visitors to OB beaches
  • 4,500 interventions
  • 76 water rescues
  • 130 medical assist

Also, the lifeguards have ended the summer station at Sunset Cliffs. Meanwhile, the OB Lifeguard tower is being painted. Plus with help from a grant from the OB Town Council, the OB fire station is having its kitchen upgraded.

OB Elementary School Principal Drapeau

Surge in OB Elementary School Population Means a New Teacher

Not on board yet, but OB Elementary School Principal Drapeau told the meeting the school had a “surge in student population” this fall and this means a new teacher.

Also, the school’s garden is getting a make-over – and Drapeau made a call for volunteers to give them some assistance.

OBTC Bylaw Change

Gretchen Newsom, chair of the meeting and president of the board, explained a new bylaw change the board voted for. The change allows for board terms to begin in February – after all the holiday craziness – so new members will be able to have a smoother transition into their new roles and responsibilities. “Before,” Newsom said, “as soon as new board members were elected, it was ‘here, take over the Holiday Parade’.”

Report on the main speaker, Serge Dedina, mayor of Imperial Beach is here.

Collen Dietzel being interviewed post meeting about Target.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

southobgirl September 29, 2017 at 11:30 am

Tim McClain said that it seems possible hep A could enter the water supply and be transferred by the water supply. Though the CDC says here that chlorination of water, as done in the US, kills hep A that enters the water supply:

Not sure what is valid. Perhaps possible that the virus could have mutated to new levels of resistance, and perhaps the virus has become resistant or tolerant to standard chlorination.


PL Local October 1, 2017 at 5:45 pm

Congrats * Trevor Wageman !


Mary Becerra October 3, 2021 at 8:54 am

Hey everyone. We’ve all seen the huge octopus kite flying over OB and it’s now stuck in the palm tree down by the lifeguard station. I made a go fund me for Mark to raise a little money to get him a new one. He is retired and gets so much enjoyment out of this. It’s on go fund me under. Help Mark get a new octopus kite. Thanks all!!


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