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Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
North County Times
November 8, 1999


Last week a political coop was executed in the city of Encinitas. After 4 hours of residents voicing support for the current council structure. Council neophyte Christy Guerin successfully sent that city into a tailspin, and her political aspirations into the toilet. Joining her in her desire to face the wrath of angry voters, James Bond and Chuck DuVivier, have signaled the end of their civic careers as well.

By ousting Mayor Sheila Cameron a month shy of fulfilling her term, the pro growth majority of the city council acted in direct contradiction to those who attended the hastily called "special" meeting. With assurances from the city manager that procedure was correctly followed, residents left the meeting declaring the process corrupt. This anti-environmental action also signaled the beginning of a Christy Guerin recall, and a grassroots movement to see that James Bond does not achieve higher office.

How, you may ask, is replacing Sheila Cameron as Mayor, and blocking Dennis Holz from assuming that position in the near future, an anti-environmental one? Elementary my dear Watson. Regardless of his mumbling to the contrary, James Bond, who is coincidently running for the 74th District Assembly seat, has the worse environmental voting record in Encinitas history. When facing such criticism, the Encinitas Councilmember cites his work for sand replenishment. His efforts are not based in environmental altruism, but as a way of attracting more tourists to our already overcrowded neighborhoods. Two weeks ago Mr. Bond voted against the environmental restoration of the creeks that fostered the city in it's earliest days. So much for wise leadership.

Citizens deserve to be heard, and not treated as annoying inconveniences to the those propelling the growth machine out of greed and self interest. Speaking of the growth machine and not being heard. The night after the Encinitas coup a very smug James Bond and Chuck DuVivier were applauded by the SANDAG folks at the local Region 2020 Growth and transportation workshop. Which wasn't a workshop at all. Turns out this was just another opportunity for Solana Beach Deputy Mayor Joe Kellejian, and the imperial Ramona Finnilla of the Carlsbad City Council to to tell everyone in attendance why they are going to resurrect the monster known as the Son of 680.

When asked for solutions regarding transportation problems, the resounding answer of all those who commented was Mass Transit, Mas Transit, Mass Transit. One woman went so far as to ask Mr.Kellejian why is it that mass transit is always given limited funding, and even less consideration in planning sessions, even though residents have been demanding it for the past three decades. Joe "I'm a coaster rider" Kellejian responded that "light rail and a monorail is the idea of the public and has not been planned." After clueing us into the obvious, he declared regional mass transit as unneeded, and that the best way to alleviate traffic on Interstate 5 is to widen it to 12 lanes and to build another North/South freeway though coastal North County.

In a slip of the tongue Ms. Finnilla said the most accurate thing ever to escape her lips, something everyone in the room agreed with. Her Freudian slip? "We are growing to fast." Trouble is, her remedy for this growing problem is more development, more growth, and more gridlock.

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