April 2021

Someone Has to Speak for the Trees.

April 30, 2021 by Source

Here’s how TreeWatch San Diego works to protect our urban forest.

By Carolyn Chase / San Diego Union-Tribune OpEd / April 26, 2021

While big events like the EarthFair in Balboa Park were delayed for the second April in a row by COVID-19, the annual observation of Earth Day still gave people time to look for what you can do the rest of the year to connect with nature and help protect it, such as help your local trees and parks.

In the city of San Diego, healthy trees 110 years old and in the public right-of-way have been cut down in violation of city policies and processes. These trees are the latest casualty in a disturbing trend of tree losses to development, disease, pests and neglect. California pepper trees were planted in 1910 in Kensington and about

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Feeling Grateful for My Mother

April 30, 2021 by Ernie McCray

by Ernie McCray

I’ve been thinking about my mother as Mother’s Day nears, wearing that smile she wore when I brought home good grades, or had done a good deed, or scored a bunch of baskets.

Hers was a beautiful smile, befitting a beautiful woman.

And, I can see her not smiling, too, standing with her hands on her hips, flashing me a look that could change a charging lion’s mind, when I had crossed a line.

The biggest line for me to cross with her was lying.

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City Knew of OB Pier’s Growing Structural Problems in Late 2019 But Kept Quiet

April 30, 2021 by Source

by JW August / Times of San Diego / April 30, 2021

It was back in 2016 when Geoff Page noticed during his runs up and down Ocean Beach Pier what he thought were troubling structural problems.

Page has a construction background, so he says he couldn’t help but notice excessive wear and other damages to the supports for the 1,971-foot pier — the longest concrete pier on the West Coast.

It was also the same year that Ocean Beach celebrated the iconic pier and its 50-year survival of many of nature’s challenges. Over the decades, massive waves have taken a toll on the pier but how serious the problems may have become had never been made public by the city.

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San Diego Creating Its Own Municipal Utility Opposed by All the Usual Suspects

April 29, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

It’s really no surprise that a study recently released by a business institute at Point Loma Nazarene has come out strongly opposed to the City of San Diego creating its own utility company, which would be then publicly-owned.

The study by Nazarene’s Fermanian Business & Economic Institute claims it would cost the city nearly $9 billion in taking over SDG&E’s assets – way too costly – and there would be no benefits to the process called “municipalization.” At a recent press conference, Nazarene chief economist Lynn Reaser and primary author of the study, stood outside a SDG&E substation. Reaser was joined by all the usual suspects:

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Robb Field and Dusty Rhodes Parks in Ocean Beach Need Improvments

April 29, 2021 by Source

Editordude: This is the third and final part of our series highlighting proposed improvements of Ocean Beach’s parks. The proposals come from the Ocean Beach Planning Board Parks Subcommittee. (Here is the original.)

Robb Field

The largest recreation space in Ocean Beach, Robb Field is a great community asset that can be updated to provide more recreational amenities and support a diverse range of activities and interests.

Robb Field Athletic Field is the main recreation space in Ocean Beach, and home to many activities that draw users from all over San Diego.

Proposed Improvements

Community requests include the addition of:

  • a disc golf training course around the perimeter of the park,
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Recommended Improvements for Ebers Street, Collier and Spray Street Parks in Ocean Beach

April 28, 2021 by Source

Editordude: This is the second part of our series of the proposed changes and improvement to OB’s seven parks by the Ocean Beach Planning Board Parks Subcommittee. (Here is the original presentation document.)

Ebers Street Park

This family-focused pocket park adjacent to the Ocean Beach Recreation Center is in need of updates to support the health and safety of the many local children that use the playground and grassy area.

Set in the midst of a family neighborhood and across the street from Ocean Beach Elementary School, this park is highly utilized by local children and their caregivers.

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Ocean Beach Farmers Market Is Open – But Restrictions Still In Place

April 28, 2021 by Source

The Ocean Beach Farmers Market is open today, Wednesday, and has been for quite some time. Despite the loosening of pandemic rules in general, the restrictions at the market are still in force – see below. According to Tracy Wagner of the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association, they have not heard from the city about any changes.

So, the list of restrictions and rules on the OBMA website is still current. Below is what the site currently states:

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‘Mr. Mayor, Does Broken Window at Mission Hills Library Reflect Decay of San Diego?’

April 28, 2021 by Source

What’s Up With the Mayor’s App? – Part 4

By Colleen O’Connor

Today’s “What’s Up” episode deals with one of the nicest new libraries to grace the City. That being the new Mission Hills branch; done with taste and in keeping with that area’s craftsman-like architecture.

However, for months, and months, and months, now, there has been a broken window out front that has been boarded up and yet to be replaced.

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OB Historical Society Presents: ‘Women of the Presidio’ – Rare Stories of Colonial and Indigenous Women – Via Zoom Wed., April 28

April 28, 2021 by Source

Join the Ocean Beach Historical Society tonight, Wednesday, April 28, for a presentation by San Diego Historian and OB Favorite, Richard Carrico on “Women of the Presidio,” – stories rarely told of Colonial and Indigenous Women on the Frontier.

Wed. April 28 at 7 pm via Zoom Teleconference Lecture Link: Women of the Presidio

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Franchise, Franchise – Who’s Got the Franchise?

April 27, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

There’s been a number of developments in San Diego’s efforts to sign a new franchise agreement for its gas and electric utilities.

As you may know, the city’s 100 years with the SDG&E has ended – there’s a temporary extension right now with the giant utility company that has had a virtual monopoly for a century with the fair city. And two mayors, Faulconer and Todd Gloria had tried to re-establish a utility franchise contract with SDG&E, only to be met with intransigence from city council members and those pesky ratepayers. And it turns out, after Gloria opened a second round of bidding for the franchise, once again, SDG&E was the sole bidder:

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These Gorgeous Tiny Houses Can Operate Entirely Off the Grid

April 27, 2021 by Source

It can even generate its own water.

By Adele Peters / Fast Company / May 2019

In a factory in Nevada, a large 3D printer prints the pieces of new prefab tiny homes that can work fully off the grid. When complete, the houses will run on solar power, including heating and cooling. An optional system generates water from moisture in the outdoor air so it isn’t necessary to connect to a city water supply. In the bathroom, the home is among the first in the U.S. to use a new shower that cleans and recycles water.

The house, from a startup called PassivDom, is designed to use as few resources as possible.

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Proposed Improvements for Veterans Park and Saratoga Park in Ocean Beach

April 27, 2021 by Source

Editordude: the Ocean Beach Planning Board Parks Subcommittee has come with proposed improvements and recommendations for OB’s 7 parks: Veterans, Saratoga, Ebers Street, Collier, Dog Beach / Spray Street, Robb Field and Dusty Rhodes.


The purview of the Ocean Beach Planning Board Parks Subcommittee is to review the accessible park space in the Ocean Beach area for the quality and usefulness of existing amenities and suggest upgrades focused on equity, safety, climate action goals, art, and promoting healthy and active lifestyles in accordance with the City of San Diego’s Parks Master Plan.

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A Scare of Scares

April 27, 2021 by Ernie McCray

By Ernest McCray

Carlos, my youngest
and now only son,
has Covid-19.
But he’s got the battle won
it seems.

Yet, when the news reached me,
as quick as
a flash
of lightening
streaking across
the sky,
ghostly like images of
Debbie and Guy,
two children of mine
who have lived and died,
floated before my eyes
and I became weak.

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Why I Hate Living In My Tiny House

April 26, 2021 by Source

Small backyard houses get a lot of attention as a solution to the housing crisis, but it’s a different idea in theory than it is when you try to put it into practice.

By Adele Peters / Fast Company

When I moved from Brooklyn back to the Bay Area a few years ago, I thought, at first, that the apartment I found was charming. It’s also very small: At the end of a long driveway, inside a former garage, it’s 240 square feet, or roughly the size of one and a half parking spaces.

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Reader’s Rant: Why Is the Maritime Museum Still Storing Stuff on Public Space?

April 26, 2021 by Source

By Pissed Off

I’ve been pissed off ever since the Maritime Museum has been allowed to continue to store stuff in between Spanish landing and Liberty Station.

They’ve been allowed to do this ever since the San Salvador replica was built and completed about 7 years ago.

They have fencing around their area with tarps that create a blind corner that’s very hazardous to bicyclists.

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Billionaires Continue Their Efforts to Privatize Public Education

April 26, 2021 by Source

By Thomas Ultican / Tultican / April 22, 2021

Twenty years of studying education policy, politics and practices has been awakening. Seeing billionaires inflict their often misguided and unpopular beliefs on our nation’s public schools has made it clear how undemocratic and dangerous extreme wealth is.

They have established voucher programs routinely sending taxpayer money to religious schools even though these programs have lost decisively whenever submitted to voters. In her book Slaying Goliath, Diane Ravitch labeled these 0.1% of Americans as disrupters. She asked and answered the question “what do disrupters want?” They want:

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SANDAG’s ‘Grand Central Station’: Spending Public Money Without the Public’s Say

April 23, 2021 by Staff

SANDAG Presentation at Midway Planning Meeting Raises Questions

By Geoff Page

Presentations by SANDAG on the “Grand Central Station” project and the Climate Action Campaign were the items of interest at the Midway-Pacific Highway Community Planning Group’s monthly meeting Wednesday, April 21.


The SANDAG presentation was not on the agenda and came more as a Government Office Report on the agenda.

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Two Oscar Nominated Movies, and Why the Sixties Never Leave Us

April 22, 2021 by Source

By David Helvarg / The Hill / April 19, 2021

Two movies nominated for Academy Awards for both “Best Picture” and ”Original Screenplay” are “The Trial of the Chicago 7” and “Judas and the Black Messiah.” They capture an iconic time in our history in ways that few earlier cinematic efforts have managed with a couple of notable exceptions. These include Ava DuVernay’s “Selma” that revealed the tactical and strategic challenges of the 1960s civil rights movement for Martin Luther King and his fellow activists and Milos Forman’s “Hair” that explicitly connected the emergence of an exuberant hippie culture to the looming death culture of the Vietnam war.

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Thanks to a Jury for Keeping Hope Alive

April 22, 2021 by Ernie McCray

by Ernie McCray

Dear Jury: Waiting for your verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial was agonizing. No pun intended, because of what the trial was all about, but I could hardly breathe.

But when it was announced, regarding all charges, that you had found him guilty as guilty can be, air rushed from me like a river pouring into the sea.

I’ve never felt more relieved. But what does it really mean?

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5 Projects Before OB Project Review Committee – Wed., April 21

April 21, 2021 by Source

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San Diego Democratic Party Calls on City to End SeaWorld Fireworks

April 21, 2021 by Staff

On Tuesday, April 20, the San Diego County Democratic Party unanimously passed a resolution that calls on the City to end SeaWorld Fireworks.

The resolution calls on the San Diego City Council to take action against the nightly fireworks that SeaWorld blasts off in a public park over Mission Bay, finding that the noise from the explosions “frightens companion animals, terrifies lonely shelter dogs and cats, and wreaks havoc on wildlife, often causing dogs and cats to flee and become lost and injured, and the toxic chemicals released into the air and water poison the environment.”

Through the resolution, the “San Diego Democratic Party calls on the City of San Diego to end this public nuisance occurring at a public park by a private for-profit corporation.”

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After Their Presentation at Peninsula Planners’ Meeting, SANDAG Appears to Be Working for the Navy

April 21, 2021 by Staff

By Geoff Page

The Peninsula Community Planning Board’s regular monthly meeting, Thursday, April 15, was mostly about procedural matters that take place each year after the March elections. This stuff doesn’t usually interest most folks. There were two other items that were of interest though.

Judging by a SANDAG presentation, it appears that SANDAG is now working for the Navy. And, a 1,029/SF, two bedroom, two bath companion unit with no parking in an RS-1-7 single family zoned neighborhood. All depressingly legal.


Gia Ballash gave a presentation for SANDAG describing something called the “San Diego Region Military Installation Resilience” project. Here is how SANDAG describes it:

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Save the Libraries: Throw the Book(s) at the Mayor

April 21, 2021 by Source

By Colleen O’Connor

How unenlightened can the Mayor’s budget be?

Cut the libraries, the staff, the books, the safety net for children, the local artists’ displays, story times for the pre-schoolers and lots of books and computer access for seniors, students, the homeless, and others who cannot afford the luxury of private ownership.

How is this sanity?

All great cities house a great library. Bibliothèque Sainte Geneviève in Paris; Trinity College Library in Dublin; Real Gabinete Português de Leitura in Rio de Janeiro; National Library of the Czech Republic in Prague; and of course the New York and Seattle Public Libraries.

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Derek Chauvin Found Guilty on All 3 Counts of Murdering George Floyd

April 20, 2021 by Staff

OBcean present in Minneapolis while verdict was read.

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter by a jury Tuesday for his role in the murder of George Floyd last May outside of a local convenience store.

Floyd’s death, and the video that showed Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for about nine minutes, became a catalyst for the country’s racial and social justice movement last summer.

A jury of six white, four Black and two multiracial jurors deliberated nine hours over two days — five hours on Monday; four hours Tuesday — before rendering a verdict.

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Affordable Housing at the Sports Arena Site

April 20, 2021 by Source

The Sports Arena site provides an incredible opportunity for showcasing what can and should be done on public properties in California.

By Susan Baldwin/ Voice of San Diego – Patch / April 19, 2021

Imagine a 48-acre site, ripe for redevelopment near the Old Town Trolley/Amtrak/Coaster station, and where a 30-foot height limit has been removed.

Now imagine this prime piece of real estate is owned by the city of San Diego — a public agency that could and should take this unique opportunity not to solicit a development project focused on making the most profit possible, but one that would create a model balanced community that provides housing affordable

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Snorkel Dork in Ocean Beach Waters

April 20, 2021 by Source

There’s more in the ocean than just water, Part II

by Steve Tatro

Have you ever looked at a mirror with a snorkel on? And a mask? Well don’t, you’ll have nightmares, but for fish watching there’s nothing better. Fish don’t care what you look like; they might giggle, or turn away disgusted, but as long as you don’t try to spear them or catch them, they’re cool.

Ocean Beach fish are particularly cool because they let you swim right up to them, and the orange Garibaldi’s will swim up from their caves just to say “Hi!” Maybe they’re overconfident because of their protected status as our state fish. They really are cute, and they know it.

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News from Ocean Beach and Point Loma on 420, 2021

April 20, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

Happy 420!

Cannabis aficionados celebrate today as a near-holiday – today being April 20, 420. And doubtlessly, there will be plenty of parties today at 4:20 pm around OB and Pot Loma. And remember, California had the nation’s first ballot initiative attempting to legalize cannabis (Proposition 19) in 1972 (it failed), and then was the first state to legalize medical cannabis with the passage of the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 (Proposition 215). Then, of course, in November 2016, California voters approved the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (Proposition 64) to legalize the recreational use of cannabis. Happy 420.

International Hostel on Udall Sold

A former international hostel on Udall Street in Point Loma was sold recently for $1,300,000. The 2-story building at 3970 Udall was built in 1954, and its lot size is 4,825 square feet.

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Mayor Gloria’s Budget Cuts 2 Days, 150 Workers and 10% from City Library Budget While Giving $10 Million to Convention Center

April 19, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

Mayor Todd Gloria’s new budget proposal would cut two days, over 150 employees and 10% of the city’s library budget. He also proposes, at the same time, to give over $10 million to the Convention Center.

Now, sure there are trade offs in the library arena. There would be additional monies for library activities, books and videos. Plus, there are other positive aspects of Gloria’s budget – like pay increases for city employees.

But, the point is, this is the first proposed slash of San Diego libraries in more than a decade. Gloria wants to take $5.6 million out of the library budget, going from $59.7 million to $54.1 million.

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San Diego National Cable Channel Still Doubts Biden Is President

April 19, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

It’s incredible. A San Diego-based right-wing cable channel still questions whether Joe Biden won the 2020 presidential election. As recently as March 28, one of the correspondents at One America News Network said, “There’s still serious doubts about who’s actually president.” This statement was made by “correspondent” Pearson Sharp.

To go by much of OAN’s reporting, it is almost as if a transfer of power had never taken place.

OANN is currently located at 4757 Morena Blvd, San Diego, CA 92117 and its public phone number is (858) 270-6900.

Reportedly, OANN is available in some 35 million households. And it has become “a kind of Trump TV for the post-Trump age,

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Halt the Nightly Fireworks at SeaWorld – Sign the Petition

April 19, 2021 by Source

SeaWorld is damaging the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of San Diegans on a nightly basis,every day for 3 months straight during the summer season alone. They are damaging the overall physical well-being of the citizens of San Diego who live within a 20 mile radius or larger.

The fireworks at SeaWorld constitute animal cruelty. Dogs, cats, and other companion animals don’t understand that the terrifying loud bangs are a celebration. Sign the Petition – go here.

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