November 7, 2012

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11/13/12

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Special Events/Economic Development Coordinator
Teresa Collins has been selected for this position and will begin working on Monday, November 26.

Economic Development Task Force

The first meeting of the Economic Development Task Force was held yesterday.  Dave Ferguson agreed to serve as the Task Force’s chair person.  The focus of their initial work will be to prioritize the 5 target industries identified in the Master Plan, determine potential locations for them including the newly approved general plan employment areas and develop plans to market our city to them.  Also to be considered as part of their work will be the support businesses/supply chain for those 5 targeted industries.  Their next meeting will be on November 29.

COMMUNITY APPEARANCE

“Report It” APP

An additional feature has been added to this app…residents can now report abandoned shopping carts, in addition to reporting potholes, graffiti, abandoned vehicles on public property, homeless encampments,  fire hazards, and weeds.

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES

Planning

  • Sager/Von Seggern Annexation and Specific Plan – The City Council initiated this annexation request last year, directing the applicant to include all City-owned properties in the vicinity. Since that time, the applicants have explored annexation options with the affected property owners, as well as staff from the County and LAFCO. They met recently with staff to discuss a revised annexation boundary, and procedures for the City to hire the EIR consultant as well as a consulting project manager to act as an extension of staff  (at the applicant’s expense) to process their application. Once the project boundaries are determined, the applicant will prepare the draft specific plan for the annexation area and the tentative map for the Sager property; the application is anticipated to be submitted within the next 4-6 months.
  • Interfaith has submitted a letter requesting to operate their winter shelter early this year.  They have an approved CUP for a 40-bed facility at the 550 W. Washington site, with conditions limiting operations to Dec. 1st through Mar. 31st; they would like to open on Thanksgiving, Nov. 22nd. There is insufficient time to conduct a hearing on a potential modification to the CUP. Therefore, Interfaith will be advised that their request cannot be accommodated this year and will be folded into the topics being addressed by the City’s interdepartmental task force on homeless issues.
  • The Conditional Use Permit application for Classical Academy to locate a high school at the former North County Times building was submitted on 11/5/12.

Code Enforcement

  • In accordance with our policy, the candidates will have until November 18 to remove their campaign signs. After that, Code Enforcement will remove and dispose of any signs that are on public property.  Signs remaining on private property will receive a notice of violation.
  • Following our review with HCD regarding our mobile home park enforcement procedures, staff reviewed the status of our documentation regarding private fire hydrant testing. Since 2002, the state has required mobile home park operators to conduct an Annual Test and Certification of Operation, as well as the Five-Year Test and Certification of Water Flow and Operational Test, and provide documentation to the City.  Before sending out the annual notice regarding renewals for their Permit to Operate, staff will be notifying the MHP managers of the need to provide updated fire hydrant testing documentation before the City can issue their 2013 Permit to Operate.

Building

Attached is the activity report for the month of October.

CAPITAL PROJECTS

2011/2012 Pavement Management Project

The striping contractor is installing material throughout the project area. The work should be on going for the next several weeks. We are still reviewing the available construction options for the remainder of this year’s program funds.

Private Development:   

Wal-Mart

Offsite water main construction is approaching the intersection of Ash Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.

Tract 921: Contempo

Onsite water main demolition began this week, with the contractor disconnecting water line valves with the assistance of the water utilities department.

Mission Avenue 69KV Underground Electrical Line

Eight underground electrical vaults have been constructed along the route. The contractor is waiting for the railroad right-of-way permit to begin the boring operation at Enterprise Street and Mission Avenue. Main line conduit construction will begin tonight along Mission Avenue headed east towards Andresen Drive.

SDG&E Steam Generator Heavy Haul

The third steam unit traveled along city streets in the early hours of Tuesday morning. The final unit is set to depart San Onofre Power Plant in December.

Talk of the Town

The onsite water main is in place with water quality testing under way.

Westfield Shopping Mall expansion

The new parking lot located along Beethoven Drive is nearing completion with the opening date set for November 19th.

PUBLIC SAFETY

Police

  • On Thursday, November 8, at 6:30 PM, there will be a Community Meeting focusing on Gang Awareness and early prevention and intervention strategies.  The meeting will be at Farr Elementary and will be hosted by EGRIP (Escondido Gang Reduction, Intervention and Prevention).  At the meeting, representatives from the City of Escondido, the Escondido Police Department, both Escondido school districts, and the community will address the attendees.  Robert Marquez, who oversees FIT (Family Intervention Team) for the police department will be the keynote speaker and will address what resources are available for families who have concerns regarding their children’s involvement with gangs.
  • On Friday, November 2, 2012, Officer Adan Martinez was recognized as the Escondido Police Departments recipient of the San Diego Crime Commission’s Blue Knight Award.  Officer Martinez was recognized for his continued professionalism and teamwork displayed every day. 
  • On Saturday, November 3, 2012, several representatives from the Escondido Police Department participated in the Ali Perez Benefit Motorcycle Ride.  The ride was attended by 300-400 persons and started in National City.  The ride traveled the county and at one point passed Sharp Hospital where Deputy Perez was outside waiving at the riders as they came by.  The ride was judged as a huge success.
  • The Grape Day Task force met on November 1st. Members included representatives of the Center for the Arts, History Center, Classical Academy, Boys and Girls Club, SD Children's Museum, Interfaith, Signature Complex, and various departments of the City including Police Department, Parks and Rec, Public Works, Neighborhood Services, and the City Attorney Office.


The police department continues its enforcement details several times a day in the park and the surrounding areas.  A marked improvement has been noticed.  Officers are rarely encountering any individuals after the park closes, and calls for service to the park have decreased significantly.  The Park Rangers have reported a decrease in graffiti and trash found in the park. 

Sgt. Kearney of EPD provided an overview of one of the major problems in the park.  The group that refers to themselves as "Juggalos" are a group of teens responsible for much of the criminal activity in the park.  The group spends their time loitering at Signature Starbucks, CCAE, Grape Day Park and surrounding areas.  They are responsible for much of the theft, graffiti, vandalism and on occasion assaults on persons. The police department is working with Signature property management and Starbucks to help eliminate the loitering problem as well as to identify this loose knit group of teens and ensure they abide by all rules and laws through a zero tolerance policy.     

A Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) assessment of the park has been completed.  The assessment identified that the park needs additional lighting in various locations and removal of vegetation to eliminate hiding places for individuals.  An increase focus on removing graffiti and blight immediately was established. 
Short term goals were established to repair the surveillance cameras that exist in the park and City Hall, and provide a CPTED review for CCAE. 

Gary McCarthy of the City Attorney's Office provided the task force with proposed ordinance changes to assist officers and rangers to more effectively enforce the existing park rules, and eliminate blight. 

Representatives of Interfaith were in attendance and will be involved in educating local churches and groups to not drop off food or clothing at the park which leads to trash and rodents in the park.

City Special Events will focus on attracting more events to the park.  SD Children's Museum, and Classical Academy hope to use the park more often for special events. The goal is to greatly increase the recreational use of the park which will displace the criminal element as a long term solution. 

A subcommittee was established to research various single person type bathroom facilities to replace the current Broadway bathrooms which attract much of the criminal activity. 

The next Task Force meeting will be on Tuesday, November 13.