Minutes from the January 25th meeting of the Del Cerro Action Council

Del Cerro Action Council Minutes from the January 25th meeting

The January 25, 2018 Del Cerro Action Council meeting was called to order at 7 p.m. by President Mark Rawlins. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited and the January agenda as well as the October general meeting minutes were approved.


SDPD Community Relations Officer John Steffen gave the community police report. There were no violent crimes in Del Cerro–2 burglaries and 6 car citations. Thieves look for easy prey–unlocked doors/windows and viewable items left in cars. The police will be monitoring pedestrian safety and vehicle safety. Be extra vigilant!

On April 28th, there will be a prescription drug take-back program for folks to drop off unneeded medications. SDSU will have a cite available too for the drugs to be dropped off.
The SDSU police lieutenant in charge of investigations stated there were 28 service calls so far in January to the Adobe Falls and 49 security checks during peak hiking times.

President’s report—The Friends of Del Cerro are still working on the Maintenance Assessment District plan. The Engineer’s Report is done, but the city is on hold and that makes the next step, and the petition, on hold as well. The City is still analyzing the effects of the lawsuit involving the La Jolla Maintenance Assessment District. The verdict in that lawsuit found that the District did not provide any special benefits, just general benefits. The City needs to figure out what is a special vs a general (standard) benefit. Once that is determined, the Del Cerro report can be revised if needed and the petition circulated.
Mark reported that the DCAC has approximately $15,000 in its coffers, mostly leftover from the SUSU lawsuit.
Audience question on Colrich development — Mark stated it passed and that he thought the next step was for Colrich to go back to Navajo Planners and that the community could ask for improvements such as a pedestrian walkway to the Windmill Farms shopping center.

Liz Saidkhanian, Scott Sherman’s representative for Del Cerro noted that Scott was asking people to support his proposal to have the council president be rotated as the county does by speaking at the Monday council meeting at 2 pm (parking will be validated). Currently the council president is elected by council members which makes it political. If passed Scott would recuse himself from being council president, so this proposal is not self-serving, but in the best interest of the city.
Liz stated the city has doubled the quality of life team to help the homeless but only 10% of the homeless will take the offered services. The city is removing about 10 tons of trash a week from the homeless in the river camps. About $250,000 a month is spent on these cleanups.
Rosemary wants a law against panhandling and an audience member stated that the state of CA spends $80,000 per homeless person a year to fight homelessness.
Sue Braun asked about getting a No-U-turn sign on Marne (she had read about that idea in the Mission Times Courier via a letter to the editor). Liz told her anyone could make such a request on the city’s website and that it would take about 3 months to process.

Zach Bunshaft, Congresswoman Susan Davis’s representative, reported that Susan voted against the budget because it did not include any wildfire disaster relief among other things. The White House budget is due 2/12, but the extension expires 2/8 so there will be more budget discussions. Susan is on the higher education subcommittee and wants to make college more affordable. One way to do this is to have apprenticeship programs so students can earn while they learn. She is working on a homeless census beginning Friday morning at 3 am.

Michael Vogl, the Deputy Director of Customer Service of the San Diego Water Department and David Bryant came to listen to customer concerns. Mike stated that the water department cares about feedback and wants bills to be accurate. They are still reviewing high bills. They invited everyone to sign a list and they will callback to hear the individual concerns. Mike discussed the general reasons for high bills: *Increase in usage (guests, leaks, more people living in the house)
*Additional fees such as security deposit or the fee for a returned check
*Inaccurate meter readings (1.33% based on 2013 audit).
The Nov/Dec bill added an extra 10 days, — a one time change so the bill period was 70 days instead of the normal 55-60 days. The water department stated they prorated the tiers so folks weren’t negatively impacted by the longer billing period. The winter billing period for sewer rates is based on daily use, not the billing period.
Michael and David were asked to look at the prorating calculation since everyone was shocked at their December bill and how much higher those extra 10 days cost relative to a normal bill.
Audience members related their shocking increases even after removing their lawns. One person paid $260 in leak detection fees and another $60 for meter calibration testing, those that paid those fees had no leaks nor meter issues, just high, unexplained bills.
If a bill is read low or estimated low one billing period, the next billing period will reflect a higher usage. It also can cause the rate to jump if the higher bill causes an increase in the tier levels.
The water department offers a free service: they will meet you in your home and make suggestions as to how you can save water.
Mark asked that he be apprised of the findings of the reasons for the high water bills the attendees listed for the water department to check into. Mark also asked if our water meter reader kept changing or if we got the same person each period.

Rachel Gregg, the Community Relations Manager at SDSU discussed the EIR update. In 2007, SDSU revised their EIR after the court found the first one inadequate. The portion of the plan impacting Del Cerro was the building by SDSU of 48 townhomes accessed through Mill Peak and then later building 124 to 300 townhomes or condos in the lower section of their land between Highway 8 and Adobe Falls Road. The housing would be sold to SDSU faculty and staff at lower than market prices. The City of San Diego, SANDAG and the Metropolitan Transit System questioned several traffic related issues which the judge ruled SDSU needed to re-work. One issue was that SDSU had to pay for mitigation for their share of the mitigation cost, not wait for legislative appropriation. Another issue was transportation demand measures which SDSU is working on reducing traffic going into SDSU such as encouraging using transit passes and bikes. The third issue was an analysis of transit-related impacts to trolley and bus service. SDSU concluded that there is plenty of capacity on the trolley and buses. The traffic studies were updated, particularly for Del Cerro Blvd and College. This study was done in April 2016, on a weekday when schools were in session. Even at the higher traffic levels in 2007, per SDSU, there was no significant impact for the additional SDSU-caused traffic.
Now that the issues have been re-addressed, and once the public comment period is over in a month, the California State University trustees can approve the plan. Once the plan is approved, the 48 upper portion units could be built.
However, Rachel said that SDSU is not planning on through with this project right now. The focus in on Mission Valley. “Adobe Fall is not a conversation.”
Rachel noted that SDSU had 90,000 applications this year, up 11% from last year. They think it is because SDSU offers and affordable education.
An audience member questioned why SDSU had to expand versus building another campus in Chula Vista or using more satellite campuses such as Brawley and Calexico. SDSU will not be using any more satellite campuses. As far as Chula Vista, no one really knew, but thought the matter was put to rest because another campus would entail another set of administrative costs.
Rosemary wondered if SDSU would trade the Adobe Falls Land if they got the Mission Valley land. Rachel thought it was possible, but stated she cannot speak for SDSU. Laura Shinn the Director of Planning for SDSU jumped right in and said that since SDSU was at their cap of 25,000 full time equivalent students (FTEs), to get to the next cap level of 35,000 FTEs, SDSU had to use all its resources. SDSU wants to grow, and to do so, they need to implement their plans, although there are no plans yet to do so. In November, SDSU expects to have its new president and is cleaning up open issues so the new president can start with a clean slate. Complying with the court order to rework the traffic section of the EIR is a clean-up activity.
Rachel offered to give any interested person a tour of SDSU. She stated SDSU is cleaning up the brush and painting over the graffiti at Adobe Falls.

There being no other comments or any other business to discuss and an announcement of the next meeting date of April 26th, the meeting was adjourned at 8:20 pm.
Website – Delcerroactioncouncil.org

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