There’s an Emergency at the Ocean Beach Planning Board – 6 Seats Out of 14 Are Vacant

by on August 6, 2018 · 10 comments

in Ocean Beach

Current roster of OB Planning Board members as of August 1, 2018.

The OB Rag is declaring an Emergency at the Ocean Beach Planning Board. And this emergency has not been sanctioned by the Board itself – but is an independent determination by a seasoned observer – this reporter.

The Board, established in 1976, has 14 seats – two from each of the 7 planning districts of OB. Well, right now, six of those seats are vacate. Board chair Blake Herrschaft announced his resignation last Wednesday, Aug.1 and that he was departing for Tahoe immediately. Vice-chair Andrea Schlageter will step and be the interim chair.

Herrschaft’s absence makes this an unprecedented situation for the Board – made up of community volunteers – with nearly half the seats of the panel vacate. That means the residents, businesses and property owners of Ocean Beach are not being represented sufficiently. This has never to our knowledge occurred before in the 42-year old history of the city’s longest-existing community planning board.

OB planning districts 1 – 7.

Looking at an edited version of the current roster of board members, we see there’s a seat vacant in every district except 5. (It’s been edited because the version Blake sent the OB Rag still included his name in district 4. Whomever is appointed to his seat has it until March 2019. And please note there’s other information in the roster that has not been updated.)

So – what to do?

Good citizens, tenants, property owners and businessowners of Ocean Beach must step up and volunteer for the Board. The qualifications are not complex. And since the next election to the Board is not until March 2019, individuals can be appointed to fill the vacant seats.

How to apply? Here’s the instructions – straight from the OB Planning Board’s website:

Candidate Eligibility Requirements

All persons who meet the eligibility criteria below may apply for a seat on the Board. It is not necessary to be a registered voter with the state or county government.

Candidates must first demonstrate that they are 18 years of age and meet one of the following conditions within the OB Community Plan Area for more than 30 days:

  • Resident: Residing and maintaining a physical address
  • Property Owner: Owning property
  • Business Owner/Licensee: Owning/operating a business with a physical address/location

In addition, eligible candidates must:

Gather at least 35 signatures from the district in which they are seeking a seat (signatures must be from district residents, property owners, or business owners/licensees)

Have documented attendance at one of the Board’s last 12 meetings prior to the election
Candidate Application

To apply as a candidate, download and complete the Candidate Application below:

Candidate Application (PDF, 200k)

Fill out the forms and documentation, and get it all to :

Ocean Beach Planning Board, 4876 Santa Monica Avenue #133 San Diego, CA 92107

Also, please note – an individual can apply to represent a district that they do not reside in or own property or a business in.

Serving on the OB Planning Board is a very rewarding experience. Many OBceans have served on it over the 4 decades since its establishment. Plus the history leading up to its establishment is quite fascinating.


{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Geoff Page August 6, 2018 at 4:01 pm

OB has a more serious problem. It could be deemed inactive. This is an excerpt from Council Policy 600-24:

When a community planning group is unable to fill a vacancy within the 120
days, as specified above, and there are more than twelve members in good
standing, the group may either leave the seat vacant until the next regular
election, or amend its bylaws to permit decreased membership to a minimum of
twelve members. If a vacancy remains for more than 60 days from the time a
vacancy is declared, and the community planning group has less than 12
members in good standing, the group shall report in writing the efforts made to
fill the vacancy to the City. If, after 60 additional days, the community planning
group membership has not reached 12 members, the group will be deemed
inactive and the City shall notify the City Council that the community planning
group will be inactive until it has attained at least 12 members in good standing.
The City shall assist with the community planning group election in the attempt
to regain the minimum Policy membership requirement of 12 members


RB August 7, 2018 at 6:56 am

This Planning Board excludes most of the 92107 community. It excludes many of the shoppers on Newport, many of the the student and parents at OB Elementary and all the homes above Ebers. This small, restrictive group has earn it’s apathy……….


OB kid August 7, 2018 at 9:48 am

cause OB is filled with STVRs thats the reason, surprised my district 5 is full…also, it seems not much planning goes on just obstruction…why would anyone want to join? what is the incentice/impact to the community?


kh August 7, 2018 at 10:14 pm

Because without the planning board we are completely at the mercy of the city. Do you think they know what’s best for OB?


Geoff Page August 7, 2018 at 10:32 am

RB, they don’t exclude anyone, the planning board boundaries just don’t encompass all of 92107. I have that code but I’m two blocks out of the boundary. My area, and the rest of Point Loma is represented by the Peninsula Community Planning Board. The eastern boundary is Froude Street and the line runs down the middle of the street. But, you can still attend OB meetings and follow the issues and help out if you can. Otherwise, go to the PCPB instead.


RB August 8, 2018 at 7:34 am

The solution is to let the PCPB represent the whole peninsula and end the unfairly restrictive OB board.


Frank Gormlie August 8, 2018 at 11:01 am

Research some OB history RB. You want to take OB back over 4 decades, as OB originally was part of the Peninsula Plan – and that’s where the troubles began – or at least came to a head.


Frank Gormlie August 8, 2018 at 8:13 pm

The solution could be that the Peninsula Community Planning Board enact districts and district-only voting for board members. There’s a whale of a diff between folks in “the Wooden Area” and those who live down in the “forgotten” neighborhoods of northwest Point Loma.


Roderick T. Long August 11, 2018 at 12:36 pm

“Vacate” is the verb. ‘Vacant” is the adjective.


Geoff Page August 13, 2018 at 2:05 pm

So that’s it Roderick T. Long? Just a comment on two words in the article? Gee, thanks.


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