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Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
North County Times
August 30, 1999


Recently the pro-development establishment have been trying their best to vilify ex-Escondido Councilman Jerry Harmon, the editorial board of this newspaper included. I only mention NC Times because of the unsigned editorial of August 19, 1999. By referring to Mr. Harmon's commitment to the environment as a "medicine show," the editors of this otherwise fine publication have documented their anti-environmental bias.

Trying to discredit an alternative voice, the editorial suggests that Jerry Harmon's attempts to rein in the developers is nothing more than campaigning. Funny how the motives of those shilling for the industries that make their living promoting and/or perpetuating urban sprawl are never accused of campaigning, just selfless devotion to economic growth.

In an NC Times story on August 22, 1999, San Marcos City Councilman Jim McAuley was quoted ad nauseam as he furthered the character assassination put forth by what Mr. Harmon refers to as the "Growth Machine." This story also reported Escondido Mayor Lori Holt Pfeiler saying that "Escondido has a dire need to convert", aka destroy, "undeveloped land for industrial use" The last thing Escondido needs is more industrial parks. I suggest they look to the redevelopment of current industrial space, such as the junk yards located next to Highway 78 in that city's northwest section.

My question is where are the quotes from the elected officials, such as Encinitas council member Dennis Holz, and the residents who support efforts to control the development industry's blitzkrieg on the region's natural heritage. Also lacking in these aforementioned hit pieces was any real discussion of how and why the current growth ideology is failing. The fact that decisions made by the development puppets sitting on city councils are responsible for the gridlock choking our quality of life, while pushing native species to the brink of extinction, goes unreported as well.

It would be a false statement to call Encinitas City Councilman Chuck DuVivier a puppet of developers, due to the fact that he is a developer. If anyone doubts that developers are operating carte blanc, they need look no further than the back door wheeling and dealing of Encinitas councilman DuVivier and his uncle-in-law. Not only is this dynamic duo doing everything in their power to see that Carlsbad blends seamlessly with Encinitas, they are currently holding the permits to develop 104 acres east of Rancho Sante Fe Road, conveniently located on the Carlsbad side of the border that city shares with the Encinitas. Another remarkable coincidence is that Councilman DuVivier's company DuVivier Homes will construct the first phase on what is now a bucolic pasture.

Meanwhile back at the Smoking Gun Department, hidden away in the verbiage of the City of Encintas 1999-2003 Five Year Financial Plan/Capital Improvement the widening of Rancho Sante Fe Road, referred to in the document as the Rancho Sante Fe turn pockets. I only mention this because Mr.DuVivier chose not recuse himself from the June 10, 1998 vote that approved the allocation of funds to widen Rancho Sante Fe Rd., which in turn benefits councilmember DuVivier and his uncle. Speaking of conflict of interests, did I mention that Mr. DuVivier conveniently placed himself on the SANDAG North Coast Transportation Policy Advisory Committee. This committee is currently considering the placement of Highway 680 remarkably close to the 104 acres previously mentioned.

Amazing how the editors of the NCT have yet to investigate this developer in Councilman's clothing. Perhaps Jerry Harmon is on to something.

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