Nuts and Bolts from the Ocean Beach Town Council

by on April 27, 2018 · 5 comments

in Ocean Beach

Besides the Candidate Forum held by the Ocean Beach Town Council, Wednesday, April 25th, there was plenty of other things going on. So, here’s more of the nuts and bolts of their monthly, public meeting held at the Masonic Center.

One of the favored periods on the board’s agenda is the non-agenda public comment time. It’s the period when anyone can get and announce anything or make a comment about any issue.

About 20 school kids and adults had come to the meeting to decry the amount of trash around the community. (This reporter was in the back and it was impossible to actually hear what the kids – who got up in threes and fours to address the Board – literally had to say. I heard one phrase, “keep your butts off …..” Maybe someone who heard them can add what they said in a comment to this post.)

May 1 about California native plants at OB Library

Matt Beatty announced the OB Library is holding an event on May 1 about California native plants at 6 p.m. Naturalist and photographer, Phil Roullard. will be on hand to speak about native plants via his slide show photo exhibit; followed with a presentation by landscape architect Kay Stewart.

May 19 Clean-Up and Petition for Better Enforcement of Litter Violations

Greg Crowley announced a community clean-up on Saturday, May 19th, hosted by OB CSI (OB Clean Streets Initiative). Greg also said that there’s lots of clean-ups in OB but the litter is not going away, and it’s a health and safety issue. Because of that CSI has begun a petition to pressure city departments to enforce litter violations with citations.

OB Kite Festival – May 12th

Mike from the Kiwanis Club of OB reminded everyone the 70th OB Kite Festival is coming up on May 12th. It’s a free event and space is available for groups to set up booths. Mike said it’s the oldest kite festival for kids in the country. It’s from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Robb Field – and there’s free admission.

Kevin Hasting and the slimebike found in the seaweed. “This is a new type of litter,” he said.

Limebike Found in Ocean

OB resident Kevin Hastings presented the Town Council with a somewhat damaged Limebike that he said was dragged from the seaweed and ocean, and called it “a new kind of litter,” showing up on our beaches and water. Limebikes is not interested in retrieving them, he said, and the city is not dealing with them. “I want to throw it in the dump,” he said. Later during the Lifeguard presentation, a lifeguard chief admitted his crews sometimes retrieve them.

No Target in OB Campaign

Kim McGinley assured the crowd at the meeting that the No Target in OB is still very much alive, and that it is promoting a boycott of Target. They have 1500 signatures now and are beginning a second round of signatures of people opposed to Target in OB. There’s t-shirts at the James Gang on Newport Avenue and plenty of signs and petitions at the OB Green Center on Voltaire, 4843 B Voltaire.

Next on the agenda were reports of representatives from the various politicos who represent Ocean Beach. But there were hardly and reps present; nobody from the Mayor’s Office, nobody from Zapf’s office. Although Conrad Wear had sent OBTC Chair Marcus Turner an email stating his boss had found another $250,000 to continue the studies for OB’s new Lifeguard station.

Police Report

Community Relations Officer Ricardo Pinon gave a report from SDPD. They’re trying out the new “Bike Bait” program in OB – “it’s a great tool” he said. (See brief at our News of OB column.) Pinon introduced Western Area Lt. Dan Grubbs, a veteran of 28 years on the force. “OB was my first beat,” he told the meeting, back in the 1980s. “There’s been lots of improvement since,” he said. Grubbs said police are gearing up for Memorial Day Weekend. In response to a question about the woman found shot on the stairs at Ladera Street, he only said police have made “fantastic progress” on the case, and did say she was not shot by a stranger, and neither the victim or suspect are from the local community.

Lifeguard / Fire Report

Sarah of the OB lifeguards told everyone that April has been busy. Lifeguards, she said, have made 43 rescues and had 800 preventive actions. Towers 2 and 5 are now open, and on June 15th, lifeguards will be up to full staffing, including Sunset Cliffs patrols.

Some of the members of Station 15 – OB’s firestation.

New Interim LifeGuard Chief

Chief James Gartland was introduced as the new interim Life Guard Chief until the city finds a permanent replacement. Gartland said he’s worked in OB in the past and knows the community.

Interim LG chief, James Gartland

He said the Ladera Street stairs are still closed, although people, he admitted, still use them. “It’s still dangerous,” he said, “look at the cliff on the left.” This reporter notes now the stairs have been closed for over 2 months while the city studies the problems. And the physical blockade the city has installed at the stairs is very well and easily circumvented.

Han Hershman from the City Attorney’s Office briefly reported on 3 OB cases she’s following, all homeless people, including Boston James and Mama Bear – who was convicted of 2 counts of vandalism, although Han admitted she “does have a mental condition.”

Principal Marco Drapeau of OB Elementary reported the school had a successful Spring Carnival on April 6th and raised $8,000.

50th Year of the OB Town Council

Leaders of the OBTC have been reading up on its history and have discovered it was founded in 1968 – which makes this year its 50th anniversary! Time for a party, we say.

After Meeting Brew Haha

A number of board members and this reporter did try to attend the OB CDC fund-raiser at Hess Brewing Co., but they had already left. We closed the place and then crossed the street to go to Lucy’s. This reporter did begin a tradition of checking out the products of OB’s beerpubs after each OBTC monthly meeting. And I’m pleased to report the tradition does continue – and anyone who attends these meetings is invited to come along next month.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Geoff Page April 27, 2018 at 1:32 pm

What does “800 preventative actions” mean? Sounds like a way to pump up some stats. Are these constantly telling people where not to swim?


Jon Carr April 27, 2018 at 2:05 pm

I’m curious who were the nuts, and who were the bolts?

Kidding aside.. the kids were awesome and put a lot of work into their presentation. They were from high tech elementary, and in 3rd grade. They were doing various studies on plastics and waste adversely affecting our oceans and waterways. Each group had a slightly different topic of study, and they were asking for the council’s help in getting public awareness signs created and posted around town. A great idea! The board recommended they fill out a grant application, and looked forward to helping with their projects.

Also… quick correction…new interim “Fire” chief is Kevin Ester. It was really nice of him to show up and introduce himself. The new interim “lifeguard” chief is James Gartland. Chief Gartland has long had a presence in the OB community, and is a really great guy. Im very happy for him. It was confusing since they’re both chiefs, and both interim, and both part of SDFD.


Frank Gormlie April 27, 2018 at 2:06 pm



OB Mercy April 27, 2018 at 5:26 pm

It’s CSI-OB, not the other way around. Just like CSI-Miami, etc.


Tyler April 30, 2018 at 5:45 am

Why are you indirectly suggesting they should make a better blockade? Lotta surfers won’t be happy


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