Thursday, March 10, 2011

February 9, 2011 Minutes


February 9, 2011

Meeting Agenda is found in Attachment 1 at the end of these minutes.

Meeting was held at Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse – Golf Course Drive. Called to order at 6:37 pm by Chair Pat Shields. Agenda had been posted in accordance with Brown Act. A quorum of members was present.

Members present: Ruchell Alvarez, Richard Baldwin, Maureen Burke, Carole Caffey, John Kroll, Barbara McGill, Richard Santini, Pat Shields, David Skillman, Marie Skillman, Angela Vasconcellos, Jessica Wolf Members absent: David Strickland

Addition/deletions to Agenda Shields said that Information items would be addressed in the following order 1 (b) 2 (a) 3 (d) 4 (c), followed by the City Planner’s report.

Chair’s Report. None

Approval of Minutes: Minutes of 12/8/10 meeting were approved (all in favor; Burke and Baldwin abstained) Minutes of 1/12/11 meeting were approved (all in favor)


Community Police Officer- Suzy de la Pena: Transient storage facility has opened downtown, where homeless persons can store their belongings securely. Groups offering assistance to homeless are working together to reach as many of them as possible. De la Pena will miss the March meeting due to Mardi Gras celebration downtown. She said there is nothing new to report about the fatal shootings at 30th & C Street. The Homicide Unit is handling the investigation; the incident is not thought to be gang-related.

City Council District 3 - Anthony Bernal: Distributed February issue of District 3 Dialogue and highlighted: (1) Gloria is working to get restrictions on payday lenders, so that 35% would be the maximum allowed interest for all patrons, as is currently the rule for military members. (2) Mayor has changed his position on Community Gardens (3) 2/23/11 is the State of District address at the Birch North Park Theater, 6:30 pm. Parking in structure is .50 per half-hour. (4) 2/12/11 is Community Coffee at Alchemy, 10 am. He also noted that Gloria is now the chair of the ad-hoc committee for protesting changes to Redevelopment Zone rules. Sheri Lightner now chairs Land Use and Housing Committee.

Shields asked what Gloria’s opinion was of selling the civic golf courses. Bernal said there is a menu of options for budget savings. Since the golf courses are using Enterprise Funds and are located on Dedicated Park Lands, selling them would be a long, drawn-out process if selected.

Lisa Vela asked what the Mayor’s objection to Community Gardens had been. Bernal said the Mayor hadn’t wanted budget-limited staff time used to develop the rules needed, but he now supports them.

Vasconcellos thanked Bernal for getting the District staff involved so that the sidewalk scoring was done properly on recently installed handicap ramps.

City Council District 8 – Melina Meza: Said that Planning Committee and related meetings are being posted on District 8 website. They are developing an online newsletter and asked those interested in receiving it to sign up on the website. Alvarez is the chair of the Natural Resources and Conservation Committee.

Mayor’s Office – no representative present.

53rd Congressional District – Katherine Fortner. Distributed February issue of Davis Dispatch. (1) New committee assignments have been made and Davis is again on the Armed Services Committee (ranking member of military personnel subcommittee), and is also on the Education and Workforce Committee. (2) Davis is against repealing Health Care Reform (3) District Office has moved to 2700 Adams Avenue, #102.

Kroll asked Davis’ opinion on the situation in Egypt. Fortner said Davis has not stated her opinion; she is leaving that to the Executive Branch.

Bill Hilsdorf asked what would happen to the empty Post Office building after it closes 2/18/11. The building is privately owned and the Postal Service has been leasing it.


Hal Tyvol. Reminded us that litigation is pending on the Golden Hill Maintenance Assessment District (MAD). He reported that residential properties with between 25 & 50 ft of linear front footage (LFF) were being improperly assessed by the MAD at 69 LFF. 1,331 properties are affected; he had a list of them for interested persons to review. He said that complaints at City Hall have been stonewalled.

John Kroll. An Affordable Housing and Parking Workshop is coming up, where the possibility of relaxed parking requirements for affordable housing will be discussed. Kroll read the following list of questions for Councilman Gloria. Bernal will confer with Gloria and Steve Hill (District 3 Senior Policy Advisor) and report back next month.

1. What proportion of developments actually build affordable housing units and what proportion are paid to the city instead?

2. What is the number of affordable housing units built and what number of full priced units in lieu of them?

3. What is the net gain in affordable housing units after the conversion or demolition of buildings that used to have them, such as single-room occupancy hotels?

4. Is preference given on the purchase of affordable housing units to teachers or similar groups or is it simply based on income?

5. What is the goal of number of affordable housing units to be built?

CONSENT AGENDA. NONE. Land-Use Subcommittee did not meet in December


25th Street Renaissance Project. Brian Hannegan of RRM Design Group was present with an “update only”. Since our 12/8/10 meeting, he has been working with the City on scope and phasing for the project. He and his team are meeting individually with property owners where there are encroachment issues.

As projected now, Phase I will end at E Street instead of F Street, but re-striping the entire length is planned. One reason for not going all the way to F Street is that any problems with CalTrans at the ramps to Hwy 94 would hold up the entire project.

Another 3 meetings are anticipated: (1) Stakeholder meeting (2) Public Workshop (3) GGHPC. The workshop will probably be held mid-March and will be announced 3 weeks in advance. He said the City is onboard with the need for community involvement.

Hannegan said they are also working on the permit process so they can keep on track with deadlines. Designers and civil engineers on his staff are working on specifics for trees and drainage. No storm drains are included in this project, although they are hoping to divert drainage better than is currently done.

David Swarens asked what would be done about mature trees along 25th Street, and asked that discretion be used. Hannegan said they are looking at ways to work around the largest existing trees. Spacing changes will be required.

Jerry Ray asked if they will continue using jacaranda trees – she likes continuity. Hannegan said trees would be on the agenda at the next workshop; a mix of trees is likely.

A question was asked about parking meters. They are not part of the project.

Barbara Houlton asked about the length of the project at B Street. She reminded Hannegan that “stakeholders” includes all property owners. Hannegan said they were getting an updated list of property owners from the City.

Shields said she wants GGHPC to be advised what trees are to be removed. She also wants to be sure property owners are treated fairly. Shields is going to write a letter to Hannegan’s boss praising his cooperation and openness with GGHPC regarding the project.

Clean Green and Safe (MAD) Update. Carole Caffey, chair of the MAD Oversight Committee said that property owners would soon receive, by mail, a flyer with the 2010 Annual Report and a request for community involvement and spending suggestions. She said that all MAD documents, including the latest Engineer’s Report (ER), are available online at, under the Clean Green and Safe section.

Caffey said the Oversight Committee is watching to see that the CDC fulfils its contract with the City to operate the MAD. She noted that most MADs are operated by the City Park and Recreation Department.

The current year budget is about half a million dollars, including 38.2% for Enhanced Services (Harvest Landscaping is contracted to do graffiti paint out, sidewalk sweeping, etc.), 25% for Enhanced Projects (benches and planters) 9.2% for Canyons and Trails, 19% for administration (including percentage paid to City)

Kroll asked (1) what % of the money is spent in business vs. residential areas. Caffey referred to the ER as she did not know the exact numbers. Kroll said it is hard for residents to understand. (2) does the Oversight Committee hold back money. Caffey said they did hold back money for sidewalk repairs due to legal questions. Kroll questioned the spacing of the benches installed. Caffey said community feedback was used to decide where to place them. (3) what is the CDC structure without a Director? Caffey said the Board of Directors is running the CDC. Their office will be moving soon to less expensive space.

Vela asked if the new Project Manager Ben Verdugo gets his advice from the Board of Directors. Caffey said that the prior Project Manager Alex Anaya had left things very well organized. Vela asked about oversight. Caffey said much of the organizing, such as policies and regulations, was already in place.

Swarens noted that in several places on 30th Street, trees limbs are so low that the sidewalk is impassable. Caffey suggested he report the specifics to the MAD manager.

Cheryl Bryerton asked why the percentage of spending on canyons was so low. Caffey said that is because they are City property and the MAD funds are designated for property owners.

Barbara McGill noted that CDC is in a financial crisis. Caffey said that MAD funds directly pay the salary of the Project Manager. Shields said that previously the MAD paid 25% of the CDC Director’s salary. She wondered if MAD administrative costs would go down accordingly. Burke said that an assistant to the Project Manager might be hired.

Bernal suggested that many of these detailed questions would be better addressed to the CDC Board at their monthly meeting.

Santini reported that the MAD’s tree trimmers did a good job trimming the trees on his street but did not clear up the seed pods, etc. Vela said that residents HAVE to call the Project Manager about these issues – that is how they get their input and have a record of bad work.

Land Use Subcommittee Report - Project # 227526

“You Are Here” Mixed Use Project at 811 25th Street. Shields reported that Mike Burnett and Greg Avenilla of Foundation for Form Architects had shown the project to the Land Use Subcommittee on 1/26/11, and answered many questions that were asked.

Since then, the City’s assessment letter of the original proposal has been received. Shields will forward it to all GGHPC members. Shields encouraged GGHPC members to take time to view the site so they better understand the project. She wants the entire PC to stay informed, and wants discussion to come early in the project.

Burnett and Avenilla were at the meeting, and urged anyone interested in learning more about the project to stop by their office at 830 25th Street. In answer to a question about requesting variances, Burnett said they are not. They are applying for the 20% bonus in number of units allowed for incorporating affordable units into the project.

Land Use Subcommittee will discuss the project again at their monthly meeting, on 2/23/11 at 6:30 pm at the Golf Course Clubhouse.

Annual Elections.

Vasconcellos said that 8 members are to be elected next month, for terms ending 3/13. 1 vacancy for a term ending 3/12 will also be elected. 6 current members will stand for re-election: Alvarez, Santini, M Skillman, Vasconcellos, Kroll and McGill. Members of the public qualified as candidates are Cheryl Breyerton, David Swarens, Susan Bugbee, Matt Thomas and Lisa Vela.

Shields thanked Vasconcellos for her work on the Membership and Historic Subcommittees.

City Planner Bernie Turgeon

Community Plan Update Advisory Committee. The next CPUAC meeting will be Wednesday, March 2, 6:30 pm at the Golf Course Clubhouse.

The 2/2 meeting included discussion of the Matrix of comments from the first 5 meetings. This document is available on the City website. CPUAC members (and public) are asked to prioritize the comments and return by Friday, February 18. A second Matrix of comments from the Charettes will be sent out for similar comments. CPUAC members are to name their two most important topics for discussion at the March meeting.

The priorities are for importance of inclusion in the Community Plan. Comments on items not specifically in the Community Plan will be forwarded to the appropriate City Departments. It is hoped that in addition to discussing the priority results, the March meeting will begin the review of the current Community Plan.

Shields said that Turgeon had alerted her to a meeting of the chairs of the North Park and Uptown planning groups with Bill Anderson, Director of the City Planning & Community Investment Department. Shields attended the meeting.

At the meeting, Anderson said that use of Conservation Overlays in the new Community Plans had been taken off the table as a result of concerns in North Park and Uptown. She said it was unclear whether a PDO (Plan District Ordinance) such as the one that is part of our current Plan would be allowed, or would CPI0Z (Community Plan Implementation Overlay Zones).

Concern about the Conservation Overlays centered on the ongoing noticing requirements. Anderson said that decision makers want everything to be done fast and be simple. Shields wants Anderson to be at the CPUAC meeting in March to address this issue, since many in the community are excited about using Conservation Overlays in the Greater Golden Hill Community Plan.

Caffey asked whether, if there are no PDOs, the City’s generic regulations would be used everywhere. Shields said she is afraid that individualized rules will be out. Lisa Vela said that if community-specific rules like PDO’s go away, CPIOZ will be in place.

Baldwin asked if we could contact the Mayor directly about why the Conservation Overlays have been dropped. The Mayor does not want individualized rules in the Community Plans.

Kroll asked what the effect is of not having individualized rules – more projects like the one at 26th & B Streets? D Skillman noted that the current zoning along Broadway allows for the highest possible density. Individualized rules like pulling the number of granny flats already in existence in GGH into the housing unit count could let that be changed. He thinks one size fits all rules are not so good.

Turgeon said that based upon concerns being raised in North Park and Uptown, the creation of Conservation Overlays could have to be a separate process from the CPUAC (Community Plan Update). He said that the additional regulations must be requested by the community for the Community Plan Update if we want them. He said that including stricter regulations in the Community Plans often generates complaints, and that decision makers are striving for a smooth process.

On the other hand, the work process of the Community Plan Updates, which we have been following for the past year or more, is set up for including individualized regulations. Since Conservation Overlays are a new concept, most people are unclear about how they will work and believe that they are as restrictive as Historic Districts. The City does not have clear regulations for the Conservation Overlays yet.

Barbara Holton said she agreed with Shields that Anderson should be at the next meeting. She stated that unannounced and unpublicized meetings such as the one Shields attended are not a good thing.

Regarding the CPUAC process in general, Shields said she thinks we need to pick up our game; instead of endless meetings we need to get down to voting on what to include in the Community Plan. M Skillman said that by completing the prioritizing of the Matrix, we would in fact be voting on what we think is important. The idea of focus groups meeting to distill comments on specific topics had been mentioned at the last CPUAC meeting as a way to speed up the process. Caffey said that this is the point where we need to know the priorities; we should pick up our pencils and get to work.

Turgeon said that the Charette maps and comments would be in the second Matrix. We need to keep in mind the complexity of ideas.

Swarens said as far as he knew, there was no expectation of a paradigm-shifting document. Strategically, you can avoid conflict by pointing out how not much is being changed. A Conservation Overlay might be the same as a PDO in scope. He suggests concentrating on what needs to be fixed.

Caffey asked about the GGHPC membership on the CPUAC, in light of upcoming elections. Shields asked for a review of current CPUAC membership. She wants to fill any vacant seats at the March meeting. Shields mentioned that those not elected to GGHPC might be able to fill any non-GGHPC seats on the CPUAC.

Kroll asked who the decision makers are, and who they are responsible to. Turgeon said they including the Mayor, City Council, City Department Managers, and Mayor’s advisors.

Vela announced that the South Park Community Group would meet on Thursday, 2/17 at 8:15 at Alchemy. Shields asked why this group is meeting, separately from the CPUAC. Swarens explained that the group is providing third party input to the CPUAC.

CalTrans/Hwy 94 Project

Turgeon said that staff meetings are going on, and the project is well over its initial budget because of the extensive Hwy 805 ramps. CalTrans must go back to SANDAG for more money. Enhancements requested by the community have to be voted on by the SANDAG board. GGHPC needs to follow the project to assert our wishes.

Questions were raised as to why the project encourages buses from Eastlake to downtown instead of tying them into the Trolley system. D Skillman noted that other communities want rapid buses going north, not to downtown.

Vasconcellos noted that comments from Community Planning Groups bear a lot of weight with CalTrans. She said that one way for the community to get its wishes is through the Freeway Agreement process between the City and Caltrans..

Shields asked when GGHPC should make its comments. Turgeon suggested waiting for some of the studies to be completed so that we have specific things to oppose or approve. This could be a couple of years out. Vasconcellos said she thinks we should make comments now.

It was suggested that the Transportation Subcommittee be tasked with following this project.


Were deferred until next month, due to time constraints.

The next meeting will be WEDNESDAY, MARCH 9, 2011

Meeting adjourned by Shields at 8:40 pm

Marie Skillman.


Attachment 1. Agenda


February 9, 2011 at 6:30 P.M.

Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse at 2600 Golf Course Drive

Monthly Meeting

6:30 CALL TO ORDER – please be punctual

1. Additions/Deletions to Agenda

2. Approval of Minutes

3. Treasurers Report & Pass-the-Hat – Carole Caffey


a) Community Police Officer – Suzy de la Pena [744.9514 or


b) Council District 3 – Anthony Bernal [236-6633 or


c) Council District 8 – Melinda Meza. [236-6688]

d) Mayor’s Office – Denice Garcia [236-7056 or


e) 53rd Congressional Dist. – Katherine Fortner [280-5353


f) City Planner – Bernard Turgeon [533-6575 or


7:00 PUBLIC COMMENT – non-agenda items, 3-minute limit

7:15 CONSENT AGENDA – Consent Agenda allows the Committee to consent to the actions of Subcommittees in a single vote without presentation or debate. NONE


Clean, Green & Safe (MAD). Update. Carole Caffey

25TH Street Renaissance Project- Update. Brian Hannegan

Announcing Annual Elections. March 9, 2011.

Land Use sub-committee report. Proj #227526 “You Are Here.” Shields


a) Community Plan Update sub-committee. Status report and appointments.

b) Potential meeting times for Land Use sub-committee


a) Airport Noise – Carole Caffey

b) Balboa Park Committee –

c) Community Planners Committee (CPC) – Pat Shields

d) Community Plan Update Advisory Committee (CPUAC) – Bernard Turgeon

e) Code Compliance – Ruchell Alvarez

f) Clean, Green & Safe (MAD) Advisory Board – Carole Caffey

g) Historic – Angela Vasconcellos

h) Membership and Elections – Angela Vasconcellos

i) Parks – Maureen Burke

j) Transportation –


*Times are estimates – Action Items may also be taken before Information Items

The City of San Diego distributes agendas via email and can also provide agendas in alternative formats as well as a sign language or oral interpreter for the meeting with advance notice. To request these services, please contact the City at 619-236-6479 or


Regular Meeting Schedules

Greater Golden Hill Planning Committee

Monthly*: Second Wednesday of the Month at 6:30PM

Location: Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse at 2600 Golf Course Drive

Code Compliance Subcommittee

Monthly*: Second-to-Last Wednesday of the Month at 6:00PM

Location: Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse at 2600 Golf Course Drive

Land-Use Subcommittee

Monthly*: Last Wednesday of the Month at 6:30PM

Location: Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse at 2600 Golf Course Drive

Transportation Subcommittee

Monthly*: Last Wednesday of the Month at 6:00PM

Location: Balboa Park Golf Course Clubhouse at 2600 Golf Course Drive

*Traditionally there are no meetings in the month of December

Proposed Agenda Topics for Next Meetings

Greater Golden Hill Planning Committee

Items: None

Code Compliance Subcommittee

Items: None

Land-Use Subcommittee


Transportation Subcommittee

Items: None