Peninsula Planners OK tree project, school liaisons, March 18 election

Community members gather at the Peninsula Community Planning Board meeting Thursday, Feb. 20 at the Point Loma Library.
(Savanah Duffy)

Discussion about its committees and upcoming election took up most of the Peninsula Community Planning Board’s (PCPB) Feb. 20 meeting at the Point Loma Library, in addition to its vote of support for the City’s proposed Healthy Trees for Healthy Neighborhoods Tree Planting Initiative. Mandy Havlic (co-chair with Eva Schmitt of the ad-hoc Environmental Committee), advocated for the board’s backing of the initiative and got it.

Havlic explained that Healthy Trees for Healthy Neighborhoods is a separate program from the City’s current tree-planting initiative in its quest to meet Climate Action Plan goals, wherein citizens can request free trees from the City through the Get It Done app. The Healthy Trees for Healthy Neighborhoods initative is a grassroots movement with the objective of approaching community organizations such as schools, homeowner associations and businesses to see if they’d be interested in purchasing native or drought-tolerant trees.

Board member Robert Jackson asked who would be responsible for watering the trees after they are planted?

Havlic responded her understanding is there would be a watering agreement between the City and whoever purchases the trees.

Environmental Committee structure

Co-chair Schmitt requested the ad-hoc Environmental Committee be changed to a standing subcommittee.

Jim Hare noted the bylaws for ad-hoc committees and any addition of a standing committee must be certified by the City. Because of this, he recommended the process of making a bylaw amendment through governance to create a standing Environmental Committee.

David Dick recommended the committee establish a mission statement and charter to reflect the purpose of its conversion to a standing committee. The board agreed to table the decision until the March meeting.

PCPB liaison to high schools

Schmitt explained that part of the reason behind the Environmental Committee’s desire to become a standing committee came from wanting to establish a liaison with Point Loma High School students that would allow them to experience and learn about local government groups such as planning boards.

“Our concern was this may not be possible to do as an ad-hoc committee,” she explained. “That’s what spurred part of this, not just to pat ourselves on the shoulder and say, ‘Hey, we’ve done a good job, now we want to be a standing committee,’ but ‘what can we do within the structure of this ad-hoc committee?’ ”

PCPB chair Robert Goldyn explained that the board simply needs to vote on establishing liaisons to make them happen.

A motion was passed to establish a liaison between high school-level students and the full PCPB (with the Environmental Committee as a point of contact) to give students the option of participating with other subcommittees as well.

Board election process

Due to the resignations of board chair Goldyn and vice chair Scott Deschenes, Deschenes reminded board members that he would not be present post-election to address election challenges or questions. This resulted in a discussion about his position as chair of the election committee.

A motion to remove Deschenes as election chair and appoint another board member failed, 3-7 with Goldyn and Deschenes abstaining.

(Note: As Point Loma-OB Monthly went to press, we received an e-mail that the March meeting is adjourned; therefore, Goldyn’s resignation was effective immediately. Deschenes will still serve as chair of elections, with his resignation effective midnight following the elections.)

PCPB elections are set for 4-8 p.m. Thursday, March 19 at the Point Loma Library. City rep Tony Kempton will be present to provide oversight. Seven seats are open — those of David Dick, Fred Kosmo, Lucky Morrison, Don Sevrens, Jim Hare, Goldyn (two-year term) and Deschenes (one-year term).

A motion to fill the first five seats with three-year terms, the sixth seat with a two-year term and seventh with a one-year term passed, and Brad Herrin will serve as interim chair during the March 19 meeting.

In other PCPB news

• Kudos: Both chair Goldyn and vice chair Deschenes were honored by the California State Senate and the California State Assembly for their service to the Peninsula community. Goldyn has served on the PCPB for five years, and Deschenes one year.

• Airport noise lawsuit: Board member Kosmo who chairs the Airport Committee, presented an informational item regarding the San Diego International Airport Terminal 1 expansion and Environmental Impact Report. He reported that on Feb. 7, Fly Quiet SD (a group of concerned citizens from La Jolla, Ocean Beach, Point Loma, Pacific Beach and Mission Beach) filed a California Environmental Quality Act lawsuit to attempt to stop the expansion until the airport addresses noise and pollution concerns.

The lawsuit can be read in its entirety at Select “SDIA Expansion & Quiet Skies lawsuit” link for the Feb. 20 meeting.

— The PCPB March meeting was adjourned. Elections will take place 4-8 p.m. Thursday, March 19 at the Point Loma Library, 3701 Voltaire St. Next general meeting is 6 p.m. April 16 at the library.


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