Knowing that part of the business plan at the NEW ENCINITAS Network is reading not all, but most of the Encinitas City Council agendas and Planning Commission Agendas and the altered Traffic Commission Agendas; along with not all, but most, of the local Comments made on Encinitas political articles in a variety of media; I’ve sensed a ‘theme’ in some letters and blog-postings that are bent on mis-describing Paul Gaspar, Candidate for the City of Encinitas’ Mayor, 2016.

Recently, I had to laugh at an anonymous comment that was made concerning the unexpected candidacy of Dr. Paul Gaspar.

The ‘Theme’ is, Paul Gaspar isn’t qualified to become the Encinitas Mayor. You know, the husband of the current Mayor of Encinitas that is moving-on-up to serve as our County Supervisor; was echoed by an anonymous poster on a news website: and the ‘poster’, who admitted not knowing Paul, was acting as what they call a ‘sock-puppet’ on the internet; they were literally ‘guessing’ and inferring that Paul had never served on a City Commission and, for that fact alone, his candidacy was not a sincere effort.

I laughed because it was obvious that whomever was writing this anonymous comment isn’t married.

What? Not married? Why? What has being married got to do with it?

Because after 30 years of marriage, I know first-hand that most-evenings as my wife and I are retiring, during the moments waiting for sleep to descend upon us, we quietly talk about my wife’s work and/or my own work and any challenges facing us the next day. I bet it is no different at the Gaspar home; I bet if asked, Paul Gaspar knows more about the City than most every layman/voter in the City of Encinitas. Again, why? Because he has 4 years of supporting his wife as a Councilmember and 2 years of supporting her as the City’s Mayor. I know every morning for 30 years my wife, Sarah: having thought about the challenges I spoke of the night before falling asleep, usually has one or two suggestions she hopes will ease the burdens that are on her husband’s mind before we both go our separate ways for the day: and I feel sure it is no different at the Gaspar home.

Had the ‘sock-puppet’ been married, he or she would know this about people.

I have a friend, a very successful business-person for decades in Encinitas, who had not yet met Paul Gaspar; who read some of the reactionary comments by fans of Mrs. Blakespear and Mrs. Blakespear, Paul’s opponent for the Mayor’s directly-elected seat in Encinitas: and my friend, faced with Kristin Gaspar being hopefully-elected to the County Supervisor’s position; questioned me about Paul’s resume, experience, history and motives. I smiled because quite often the only information a voter gets on a potential candidate is what they read on an unpleasant blog or in a letter to a local paper; sometimes these letters are actually motivated to disparage someone like Paul; they can question many things about his candidacy; for example,” Isn’t it odd that a husband would be following his wife into the Mayor’s Seat?” I answered, “Different perhaps, but not odd; for goodness sake, we have a former First Lady about to be elected to President and a former President about to become the First Man/Spouse; and down south 20 miles we have the Mayor of Chula Vista married to another County Supervisor; so it might not be the usual, but neither is it completely unheard of.” Most important is that Paul is not only VERY qualified; but he is kind.”

Or how about this one,” Isn’t this ‘opportunism’ on Paul Gaspar’s part?”

As defined in the dictionary, ‘opportunism’ is described as, “A conscious policy and practice of taking advantage of circumstances – with little regard for principles.” So, the answer is ‘NO’, because Paul Gaspar is running for this office because he HAS principles. Going back on your ‘Word’ to the public and your peers to stuff a Working Group with political cronies; that’s the kind of action that might be described as ‘opportunism’; or even ‘cronyism’.

Friends of Catherine Blakespear, Paul Gaspar’s sole opponent in this race, perhaps had unrealistic wishes for Mrs. Blakespear’s design to casually walk into the Mayor’s office without a competition when Encinitas Mayor Kristin Gaspar announced her candidacy for a Supervisor’s Seat; it appeared for several months that Mrs. Blakespear would have have a straight-line and uninterrupted path to the Encinitas Mayor’s Seat, meaning No-Opponent in the campaign for the Mayor’s Seat; but nature abhors a vacuum.

Many unkind things were said in the first-blush of angry surprise following Paul Gaspar’s announced candidacy; Paul’s opponent herself has claimed that Paul is not involved in local public service; yet in reality, his resume, filled with several degrees, Little League, team sports for his girls, Encinitas Rotary, Encinitas Chamber, not to mention the many pieces of legislation he helped pass in Sacramento, many of them to do with healing and health care; his resume speaks much louder of service than a law degree that is consistently being used from the dais to ignore and violate State law.

Paul’s opponent finished her angry remarks about Paul’s candidacy by stating something truly odd; she stated that there is a major difference between her temperament and Paul’s; and while this is true, any staff member or city-hall-watcher would tell you that it is Paul who is even-tempered and his opponent who is mercurial and tempestuous; it makes one wonder at her degree of self-knowledge to even approach this comparison between she and Paul. Perhaps she can refer back to the City’s video-library of City Council meetings to again, perhaps, gain some perspective as to how the public views her; and her candidacy?

‘Nobody knows Paul Gaspar’ is another misstatement on the blogs. First of all, he has a job and that job concerns the well-being of the thousands of patients that he has helped at all six of his Physical Therapy offices in North County over the last decade? After all, he is a professional healer and a good one. In fact, without getting out a measuring stick, anyone who knows Paul, Kristin and the kids, knows that Paul is honest, well-mannered, pleasant, generous and plenty knowledgeable about local events/city business and that he is running for the Mayor’s Seat for one reason; because he CARES about Encinitas, he cares about the residents and their children, he cares about our environment; and as he has watched and supported his wife while she has repeatedly tried to ‘do-the-right-thing’ in the face of many obstructions foisted upon her by her elected peers, peers that repeatedly participate in ‘serial’ meetings outside the purview of the public putting ‘the Fix’ in; he’s watched while the Council-Majority has routinely spent literally millions of dollars recklessly, leaving public-safety underfunded, watched while, repeatedly against highly-paid legal-advice, the Council-Majority has taken actions that have resulted in court-loss after court-loss and have added up to over a million dollars in losses, all lost through hubris, stubbornness and intemperance: and most-recently, Paul’s opponent for Mayor personally malformed a Working-Group, again in violation of the Open-Meetings Act and breaking her ‘word’ to peers and constituents, artificially creating an excuse for the Council-Majority to once again go against their ‘given’ word to the public, heedlessly abusing the trust of the voters again.

In fact; Paul is not only kind; he is preternaturally honest.

So, rather than read ‘reactionary’ letters to newspapers, or anonymous blogs that promote misinformation about Paul; why not contact Paul yourself and ask him to meet you, so you can find out for yourself?

You can contact Paul at Paul@GasparforMayor.com

Paul will be glad to hear from you.



The premise of this piece is simple; Encinitas is a bedroom community that succeeds on a constant influx of income from a Commuter Economy.

90% of Working-Adults in Encinitas commute outside the City to gain their income/wages. When a City Council Majority declares war on commuters, as the current one does and has, then they are attacking their own residents and business-owners.

Below is data proving just how wrong this Council-Majority is: we use links and quotes to make our point.


Happy Holidays;

If you live in Encinitas and work outside the City, or if you own a business or provide a services locally, or if you are indeed interested in Encinitas’ future, this Christmas Message is for you.

Because, while the rest of us are all searching for old addresses to send gifts to friends and relatives; your Encinitas Council Majority; Lisa Shaffer, Tony Kranz and Catherine Blakespear, referred to as a group by the acronym C.M., short for Council-Majority; are quietly taking actions that will change the City’s identity and future income to the point where their wrong-headed actions will significantly first strain, then irreparably damage the City’s Commuter-Economy hindering Encinitas’ ability to provide necessary Public-Safety institutions, negate the City’s annual income which underwrites parks, beaches leased from the State of California; and will ultimately leave our beach-city without the power to continue protecting this paradise.

Please don’t say we didn’t warn you.  You’ll find graphs, charts and links below to document the C.M. actions.


If you read the 12-8-15 Strategic Plan Agenda by the C.M. (Excerpted below and linked) you will find that the C.M.’s  Primary Goal is NOT public-safety, or healthy civic finances, but something called ‘Active’ Transportation, otherwise referred to as the cult-planning cause called ‘Complete-Streets’.

How does the C.M. plan on making City circulation routes ‘Complete’?

By reducing the width of travel lanes from 15 feet to 12 feet and then creating a significantly widened ‘bike path/walking path’ designed for the disabled, senior citizens and local bicyclists; that will run alongside the auto-travel lane thus making the street’s transformation ‘Complete’ as half the route designed for auto-travel will now make the route ‘Complete’ to integrate neighborhood activities that do not include cars or trucks.

It will also, by its narrowing, cause unnecessary doubling or tripling of travel times for commuters; for ‘in-concert’ with ‘Completeness’ comes the doubling or tripling of ‘travel-time’ combined with the doubling or tripling of gridlocked cars generating substantially increased green-house gases; meaning this idea is extremely anti-environmental.


The C.M. has approved 6 chokepoints for the part of Hwy 101 in Leucadia; AND is expected to approve city funding for a ‘Road-Diet on Hwy 101 in downtown Encinitas from E Street to I Street; in addition this Wednesday night (12-16-15) at the Council Meeting, plus, Monday evening, (12-14-15) the sole Agenda Item before the Traffic Commission (City Hall, 5:30 PM) is the return of requests from the E3 Cluster; EUSD, Botanic Garden and Leichstag Foundation) that has spent over $100K plus on architectural drawings, AND are collectively asking for the City to use $2 to $4 million in tax-payer dollars for ‘traffic calming’.


Admittedly, this returning E3 Plan no longer includes a $2-million-dollar chokepoint at the intersection of Councilwoman Shaffer’s cul de sac and Quail Gardens Drive, no, that expensive ‘vanity’ project designed for Councilwoman Lisa Shaffer was embarrassedly removed in the Spring when discovered by the public, to now be replaced by a raised 1/8th of a mile street formation that is lowered to 25 mph adjacent to Shaffer’s intersection, in complete violation of the State’s 85 percentile law.


The State law states, ‘speed-traps’ cannot be created and miles per hour posted must be kept within 85 % of the prevailing average speed; which, along Quail Gardens Drive was found to be 45 mph, just weeks before the E3 Cluster requests of the C.M. Encinitas’ Traffic-Engineering dropped the posted speed as 40 mph, down from 45 mph.

These good folks want to manipulate different laws to lower the speed to 25 mph on Quail Garden’s Drive between Encinitas Blvd. and Leucadia Blvd.

The E3 Plan calls for several unnecessary chokepoints along Quail Gardens Drive (with no cross-streets) and to this date has been unable to show ANY reason that $2 to $4 million dollars in taxpayer monies should be used to in essence stop through-traffic along Quail Garden’s Drive and Saxony Avenue.

NOTE: 2 things; Lisa Shaffer and Kristin Gaspar both live just off of QGD; and neither will be allowed legally to vote ‘approval’ of this very expensive and unnecessary investment in ‘traffic-calming. Nobles oblige?


On July 8th, 2015, Councilman Mark Muir informed those attending the public-hearing that both Lisa Shaffer and Tony Kranz had that very morning attempted, very illegally, to remove both Saxony Avenue and Quail Gardens Drive from the City’s Circulation-Element and disturbingly neither Councilperson felt it was necessary to have staff do an ‘Impact Report’ on exactly what might happen when the 15,295 cars a day that combined travel both these North/South Circulators; AND only when they found out that they would need to take the removal of these 2 major routes to SanDag to get permission, did their tune change.

Just where does the C.M. expect all these cars to go? One answer; 15, 295 ‘new’ cars daily for New Encinitas.

Again, the C.M. attempted to act and operate with ‘willful ignorance’ (a link to the New York Times describing ‘willful ignorance’ is provided readers at the end of this essay.)


Also, on July 8th, 2015, Councilwoman Lisa Shaffer asked the Planning-Director, “The Community wants to know if we (Encinitas) have to continue to have through-traffic, or can we start our major ‘Complete-Streets’ Projects?”

Meaning, she, Kranz and Blakespear want to begin impeding ‘through-traffic from traveling through Encinitas’ by consciously impeding the 5 major North/South’ Travel Routes. Again, if they are allowed to continue in this plan the income stream into the City from the Commuter-Economy will falter and the generation of green-house gases in Encinitas will increase wildly.

These important ‘travel-routes’ are Hwy 101, Saxony Ave., Quail Gardens Drive, Via Cantebria and El Camino Real. (Rancho Santa Fe Road is not included as it is already impeded by unwarranted Stop-Signs, this route impeded by a previous Council)

And seeing that the data proves that between 85% and 90% of the City’s Annual-Income is generated either directly by Parcel-Taxes or indirectly by Sales-Taxes which are unquestionably derived from the Commuter-Economy, there is no other conclusion to reach


Those who read the C.M. Agenda for Wednesday night 12-16-15, will find a Contract for Council-Approval to create a Parking-Study to utilize the guise of a ‘parking-study’ with which to achieve the Road-Diet downtown (and later on El Camino Real).

This C.M. designed requests openly of the Consulting firm, Chen Ryan, to create a ‘Parking Plan’ that involves the ‘Road-Diet’ discussed late Summer by Council-Surrogate Traffic Commission Vice-Chair Brian Grover, which called for the removal of all on-street parking along Hwy 101 downtown from E Street to I Street and the removal of 2 North/South travel lanes; and while the C.M. has given lip-service to assuring residents and business-owners that no Road-Diet will decrease traffic/sales downtown, this is the second-time in 6 months this item has surfaced. AND, make no mistake, El Camino Real is targeted too!


Tony Kranz told the rest of the Council, last Tuesday, 12-8-15 that he wouldn’t be personally satisfied until El Camino Real was reduced to a single Northbound lane and a single Southbound lane, flanked by extremely wide bicycle and walking paths, on both the East and West sides.


‘Complete-Streets’ is a recipe for disaster and if the C.M. continues in their fairy-tale-based financial actions, then the voters are faced with deciding to move, replace the C.M. en masse or do nothing and watch the City slowly die financially.


C.M. Agenda for this Wed. Council Meeting just below.


10G. Award of a Professional Services Contract for the development of the Comprehensive Parking Study.  Contact Person:  Deputy Director Deane

Recommended Action: 1. Authorize the Director of Public Works, or his designee, in coordination with the City Attorney, to execute a contract with Chen Ryan Associates, Inc. in the amount of $104,080 plus 10% contingencies to develop the Comprehensive Parking Study, for a not to exceed total project allocation of $114,488 (the Agreement in Substantial Form contained in Attachment 4). 2. Adopt Resolution 2015-87, authorizing the appropriation of general funds in the amount of $64,488 to the Comprehensive Parking Study (WC15C) (Attachment 1).



2015-12-16 Item 10G Comprehensive Parking Study Contract




Traffic Commission Hearing on E3 Cluster Request for Calming QGD and Saxony Ave.



C.M.’s ‘Willful Ignorance’Link: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/11/07/the-rules-of-denialism/

Brian Wofford – Feelin’ good

One of the givens when considering a city’s soul is the appetite of those that live here.

Like 10,000 others in the 80’s, my Solana Beach native wife, Sarah, and I set down out roots along the cool greenbelts of Village Park; and working as a stringer for Kraft Rhoades News Service we located across the street from Park Dale Lane Elementary School, and it was at this literal crossroads that we met another local father and business owner who was sending his family to Park Dale Lane, Brian Wofford.

Brian Wofford

It was at an open forum by the teacher’s association for school board trustees that we met; in fact, Brian was there to let the parents and teachers get an up close of the only gentleman on the ballot. I left the meeting and was invited across the street to Marie Callender’s Restaurant with Brian. We both had a slice of pie and got to know each other, found we had daughters in the same class at Park Dale Lane, and that as Brian built his practice, I completed 2 years as the PTA president. As my journey continued on to run the chamber, publish 2 local newspapers evolving into a 21st century information brokerage informed by 23 years of direct political participation, becoming the New Encinitas Business Network, Brian’s practice, Wofford Chiropractic, has grown just as deep and vast. Wofford Chiropractic serves local, regional, national and international athletes and competitors in the city considered the center for 5k’s and marathons; and is rooted in a family that has grown strong out of tragedy and is a continuing success-story that both informs and entertains those who enjoy the support, knowledge and generosity of Brian’s calling in life.

The Wofford Family

So, over the next few issues of the Network’s E-BLAST, while we report on the City Council’s voting majority’s immediate decisions, please join me in recognizing the many good acts and great actions from our friend of 24 years.

Brian Wofford and the Scharbarth’s who own Villa Encinitas and Larry Thomas who manages Villa Encinitas, will host an amazing milestone locally; the 5th Anniversary of the NEW ENCINITAS Business Network. Dr. Wofford, the Scharbarth’s, Larry Thomas, CFI, the Craftsman American, Jorge’s, Headline’s The SALON, Swirl Fashion Boutique, Matt Lason, and many other friends doing business in Villa Encinitas will gather together to celebrate the beginning of our 6th year operating the only local business-support group NOT to take money from the City of Encinitas and/or San Diego County.

5th Anniversary of the New General Plan

New Improved General Plan Celebrates 5th Anniversary Tomorrow, August 19, 2014

What’s the Benefit To You?

Tuesday, August 19th, tomorrow, is the 5-Year Anniversary of the Encinitas City Council’s first formal attempt to fulfill and complete a ‘Report’ to the State required by a well-meaning ‘new’ 2007 Environmental legislative bills (AB32 and SB375) that were designed specifically to address ‘climate-change’ through reduction of our City’s carbon-footprint by asking cities to force-feed future housing locations adjacent to or on local traffic corridors at a zoning of 30 housing units per acre (R-30) with the express intention of REDUCING the carbon-footprint of the entire state of California by making round-rips to work, commuting: a shorter distance.

Plus, there is no nexus or mandate to build ANYTHING. Just a report: then its up to the council, not the state.

Pretty simple concept, right?

Maybe not? Five years ago, the Advance Planning Department, led by Ad Hoc Committee Chair Teresa Barth asked for a million dollars to create the Housing Element Report the State demands to see….’where’ any R-30 can possibly built in Encinitas to help save the environment as required loosely by AB32 and SB375. Planning saw an opportunity to take complete control of private property rights under the guise of climate-change. Who was watching…

Who was watching Advanced Planning? The New Encinitas Network.

Not the Chambers, not the MainStreets, not the town councils; for the first year only the Network protested the power grab and unfairness of the GPAC process: the other group listed above? For the most part, they signed off on flooding New Encinitas with affordable housing. Read the minutes.

Local Activists

The exact same locals that helped pressure state leaders to pass AB32 and SB375 balked when the ‘Plan’ came to implementation within Encinitas.

That’s right, “Do as I say, not as I do”, as far as the local environmental fringe was concerned: and while it might be because of ‘How’ the former Planning Director originally  (30 multi-family housing units per acre) attempted to fulfill the state mandate: locating most of future R-30 to New Encinitas: this environmental story has had more twists and turns than a Fast and Furious installment: the fact is, the 3rd Wave of this endeavor of the City of Encinitas to comply with State law is about to begin again.

What happened? How did a million plus dollars get wasted and 5 years go by?

Return To Yesteryear, 2009

The very politically active citizens of environmental focus, put pressure on Sacramento to show ‘leadership’ and pass an environmentally-friendly bill (or bills) that would withhold state and federal transportation monies that Cities need; and after the activists were successful in the State capitol producing a plan tying money to rewarding future social engineering of the local environs.

But, careful ‘what’ you wish for.

Cries of, “We meant this for every ‘other’ city, not Encinitas!” were heard throughout the beach town.

Strangers Decide Local Climate Action Plan

On the same night (5 years ago tomorrow) 8-19-09, the City Council paid $12K to join a group that provided the Agenda for the city in climate change, (not one Encinitas resident sat on the ad hoc committee that created the local climate action plan): the members of the Advanced Planning Department created a plan to force commercial-property owners to build affordable housing ‘atop’ the open air shopping centers throughout New Encinitas.

Why? He was afraid of the activists from Leucadia and Cardiff. New Encinitas never showed up at City Council hearing en masse: So, they focused the future growth there. Boy, was Advanced Planning surprised by what happened.

New Encinitas Gets 90% of Future Growth, Only 4% of the Votes on General Plan Committee in 2010

This was unfair to New Encinitas; which was allotted over 90% of the future R-30 (Out of 24 residents receiving City Council approved to sit on the General Plan/Housing Element Committee that approved the plan, only 1 was from New Encinitas).

Entire City Council Poisoned By Smart Growth Kool-Aid, Except One Council Member!

Only one elected-leader took the time to listen to the business owners that were alarmed at what became known as the ‘Ugly Baby’ Draft; and that was the brand newly-elected Kristin Gaspar, herself an New Encinitas business owner. If it hadn’t been for Kristin, the Smart Growth smart-growth kool-aid poisoned Advance Planners and the Chair of the Committee that chose Berkeley’s MIG Company as a ‘Consultant’ that supported the Planning Staff’s Plan to turn El Camino Real into a walk-able community, might have gotten away with it.

But, there’s More…

And, that same evening, in addition to the million dollars allotted to force-feed R-30 into New Encinitas and the $12,000 to join the ICLEI, an International group which took decision-making about local climate-change actions completely out of local hands and delivered them into regional ‘geek’ and ‘wonk’ conventions that set standards locally without a single elected representative in attendance.

The Council’s Traffic ‘Creating’ Trifecta

On top of both of those incredible actions detailed above: on 8-19-2009 the Mayor also led approval on a hundred and ten-thousand dollar allocation for a traffic ‘modeling’ study that was fast-forwarded, executed and delivered many months before the first ‘Draft’ was produced; incredibly ‘modeling’ Encinitas streets with a program of creating ‘gridlock’ during peak hours (7:00 am – 10:00 am, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm), the redesigning the synchronized coordination of traffic lights to make it more difficult to commute through Encinitas. This was clearly the goal of the Council that evening. Watch the video.

The 3rd Wave Begins

Finally, what has changed in the 5 years since the Council started the Housing Element process and ‘why’ there should be hope to stop violating state laws?

A new City Manager, who has chosen an almost completely new team of Department Heads: new leadership on the Council itself: newby Kristin Gaspar, truly the savior of New Encinitas from the Advanced Planning Staff’s plan for El Camino Real just recently was appointed Mayor until November 4th, 2014: and a 3rd Bite of the Apple; the 3rd attempt of recognizing state housing law and simply fulfilling the mandate of providing a map of Encinitas that would allow affordable housing on transportation corridors: and the irony of all of this, is that because the former Planning Director attempted to locate most of the future growth in New Encinitas, without truly informing the residents of New Encinitas: the City of Encinitas has established a ‘new’ way to participate as an Encinitas citizen and voter, that’ll allow you to render your opinion from home without endangering yourself by wading through regular gallery of city hall squatters.

We ask you, on this 5th Anniversary of the Council’s beginning to create a Housing Element Map because of state law to visit the new E TOWN website and register.

E Town on Tuesday!

Why? Because quite soon, the 3rd Wave of the Encinitas Housing Element will begin in your neighborhood; and showing up to shake your fists at city staffers will no longer suffice as citizen participation. If you want your voice heard, registering on E-Town Website and registering your opinion and/or views is necessary: Why?

Because the Encinitas City Council will be using the data from E-Town to weigh ‘where’ and ‘how’ future growth will be planned in Encinitas.

Celebrate tomorrow’s the 5th Anniversary TODAY by clicking on the link below and registering to vote on ‘how’ to fulfill the state housing law.



NOTE: While several city staffers responsible for the failure of the First and Second Waves of the Housing Elements have chosen retirement;  several architects of the ‘Ugly Baby’ Draft still remain on staff.

Nonetheless, two new leaders; Jeff Murphy from the County, has just celebrated a year anniversary as the new Director of Planning and Building of Encinitas: joined 6 months ago by Manjeet Ranu, hired to fill the new staff position of Deputy Director of Planning and Building, tasked with creating a new software application/system to allow management to follow different jobs, issues and aspects of the Planning Process at City Hall: Manjeet hails from both the private sector and public service in East County: AND a new Director of Public Works, Glenn Pruim who was hired away from C’Bad is overseeing storm-water issues, plastic bag banning, Styrofoam banning: all of which are council majority directed.

New ‘Guiding Principals’ have been created by these Departments and are being newly followed by the Planning and Building Staff. To read the department’s Mission, link here: …click here.

Mission Statement and Guiding Principles here.


May 12, 2014

SUBJECT; Removing the unwarranted stop signs on Rancho Santa Fe Road in Olivenhain. Encinitas City Hall, 5:00 Pm, Encinitas City Council Chamber.

“I call it the law of the instrument, and it may be formulated as follows: Give a small boy a hammer, and he will find that everything he encounters needs pounding.”[2] Abraham Kaplan’s, in 1964.


First, the traffic commission has been transfigured to make safety a secondary consideration to ‘land-use’.

Traditionally the commission’s mission is to advise the council on the thresholds of requested changes in and to the overall traffic laws in the City of Encinitas.

Recently, the Encinitas City Council proceeded to change the mission of the commission to accommodate ‘land use’ in rendering additional challenges to property-owners who wish to add to or change their properties: by having projects as small as a duplex-conversion add the time and cost of a local traffic study prior to submission to the Planning Department for processing.

This alteration of the mission has confused the overall focus of the group as a whole, and perhaps, has become the first clear indicator that the council’s fundamental changes moving the specific focus of the Traffic Commission from solely traffic safety to an added and perhaps contradictory ‘land-use’ mission, has quickly and fundamentally, altered one of the most straight-forward science or math-based ‘OBJECTIVE’ commissions, not to a stand-still, but into chaos.

By extending/increasing the representative membership from 5 members based on location, one rep per community, totaling 5: for the reason of adding ‘others’ not bound or loyal to their specific community, but to be ‘At-Large’, thus altering/upsetting a 25 year ‘balanced’ commission, with the unexpressed Council intent of affecting group/commission decisions in a more anti-density/No growth manner: plus adding to that the 3 year increase in service, up from the traditional 2 years, the Council has basically brought the crisis in this commission upon themselves and those who are serving on the commission: at the sacrifice of objective decision-making. How does that help Community Character?

In an unexpressed attempt to create extra ‘hoops’ for property owners to expensively jump through, with the attendant increased costs to home and business builders, the current Council majority has literally created a political maelstrom that renders the public safety traffic commission less effective.

The commissions were designed in the late 80’s to ‘advise’ the council, to be part of an extended early warning system that filters out requests from the public so that the Council’s public hearing time has had something vetted for legality and common sensibility before/prior to reaching the council.

Up until now, the goal of the Traffic Commission was to be an early-warning indicator for the City Council: editing out and/or solving problems before they get to the council; NOT literally creating more problems for the Council; as is NOW occurring. (See Tonight’s Public Safety/Traffic Commission Agenda)

To be clear: the Traffic Commission for 25 years has been comprised of 5 commissioners, one from each community, Cardiff, Olivenhain, New Encinitas, Leucadia and Downtown Encinitas.

This past February, the current Council Majority (Yes, the $10 million Dollar Council) saw fit to transform the Traffic Commission in fundamental ways and then rename it: they wanted 7 commissioners, not five: instead of directing commissioners to use the or safety-point system ‘warrants’ in an easily objective manner, to serve as the basis for decision-making on ‘How’ to advise the Council, they asked for these seven volunteers to create a ‘mission-statement’ free of, and perhaps inconsistent with, the Council’s beliefs (Imagine sitting down with six strangers and trying to agree on a restaurant for dinner that pleases everyone) and the Council extended the service commitment from two years to three. Why? Perhaps so their appointees are still in power after the electorate has vanquished them themselves?

One of the added ‘At-Large’ commissioners has designed his own ‘Mission’: removing stop signs. (Sort of like the firemen in Fahrenheit 451, eh?)

While these alterations of size, duration and ‘mission’ sound minor, in fact, they were major. And they were made for political reasons, not public safety reasons.

One of those changes is personified by Mr. Al Rodbell. Mr. Rodbell is one of two residents who was appointed to serve ‘At-Large’ on the commission.

Over the weekend, ‘At-Large’ Mr. Rodbell e-mailed the entire Encinitas City Council Traffic Engineering staff, the Carlsbad City Council and one or two friends, to ask them all to attend tonight Public Safety/Traffic Commission meeting. Why? Mr. Rodbell wants to begin his tenure by possibly convincing his fellow commissioners into removing stop signs that are unwarranted.

While Mr. Rodbell is ostensibly using the Socratic or Scientific Method of evaluating traffic safety in the city, he is unfortunately addressing it from a similar position as the current Council Majority that appointed him: and that is one that doesn’t trust government.

Mr. Rodbell has chosen the unwarranted stop sign locations forced upon Olivenhain by then Councilwoman Christy Guerin along Rancho Santa Fe Road 14 years ago: an action by the Council in August of 2000 that located the stop signs along that route for private/personal/political/Council reasons: meaning that the stop signs did not meet the public safety point-system/warrants: and that they were perhaps more about making the drive from Leucadia Boulevard south along Rancho Santa Fe Road more ‘unpleasant’ and time-consuming for through-traffic commuters on their way to Highway I-5, and the unwarranted signs were perceived by many to be an action to help keep Olivenhain more private and rural (Like the closing of cross-streets from New Encinitas onto Rancho Santa Fe Road by Marjorie Gaines and Gale Hano) at the expense of the other 4 communities and having nothing to do with ‘safety’, an unexpressed idea that Mr. Rodbell is attempting possibly to ‘right’ a ‘wrong’ (In ‘Classism’ terms) in his subjective opinion, which is in now taking center-stage on a commission that clearly has been made ineffective by the addition of ‘land-use’ criteria to supercede safety and that is also subjective in basis, rather than being traffic safety only. (Mr. Rodbell also served notice last month that he is interested in being able to oversee police corruption in Encinitas)

So, while we applaud Mr. Rodbell for his idealism, generosity of spirit and willingness to act, rolling over your fellow commissioners so early in your tenure as a commissioner-at-large isn’t necessarily a long-term indicator for future success as part of a group, or advisor to the Council.

When you change the form and shape and time-commitment of the commission for political reasons, and in addition, do not clarify what the ‘mission’ of the commission is in reality, then you are rendering this particular commission to ‘spinning’ its wheels without a roadmap on where you want this group to arrive in advising you, nor ‘How’ you want them to get you there.

And it becomes a big, frustrating, painful, waste of time and energy.

NEXT? At least one councilperson wants roundabouts added to Saxony Avenue whether they are ‘warranted’ or not.

When commissioners are asked to use a ‘point system’ 99% of the time to determine collective public safety, has suddenly thrust upon them by the Council a request to ignore the ‘warrants’ or the ‘point-system’ for Council ‘Pet Program’, then the commissioners often feel that their volunteer time is being wasted and that the council they have been appointed to be advisors to, are not interested in their work nor opinions and feel, reasonably that they are wasting their volunteer time.

Network Director, Mike Andreen has appeared before the Traffic commission on 10 separate occasions: and served on a Safe Routes To School Ad Hoc committee that lasted 18 months and was tasked with locating the best locations for Crossing Guards.




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