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Board Bargaining
Jacqueline Winterer | Ocean View Avenue

 

Shows the impact of the 22nd DAA proposed year around use of the EOL and Golf Driving Range wetlands. 22nd DAA photo
Click on image to enlarge.

 

1953 photo of South Overflow Parking Lot (SOL) shows what
the SOL looked like before it was graded for parking.
Courtesy Del Mar Historical Society
Click on image to enlarge.

 

The 22nd Agricultural District and environmentalists clashed at the October 11th Coastal Commission hearing in San Diego over whether a 2012 Cease and Desist Order gave the District carte blanche to park on recently discovered wetlands. The District claimed they had a deal that gave them the authority to use the wetlands for parking while the environmentalists (including San Dieguito River Park staff, County Supervisor Dave Roberts and Former Supervisor Pam Slater-Price) claimed this wasn’t ‘the deal.’

Eighteen months ago the District entered into negotiations with the Commission to resolve thirty seven years of violations at the Fairgrounds property. In the resulting Cease and Desist Orders the District agreed, among other provisions, to restore the South Overflow Parking Lot (SOL) to wetlands, to produce a wetland delineation survey and submit an application for a Permit to hold any additional seasonal events. These provisions were considered remedial actions for past violations.

When the delineation survey was issued in September 2012 it showed that 33.4 acres of State and Federally protected wetlands exist on the East Overflow Parking Lot (EOL) and Golf Driving Range (GDR). According to many speakers at the October 11 meeting this was a “game changer.” Although parking has been allowed in these areas, the new information calls into question approval of the whole area for any parking, let alone year round parking requested by the District for additional events including a second race season. Complicating matters, the District is scheduled to come before the Commission Wednesday, November 13 with additional requests.

During public comments environmental groups, including Sierra Club, Surf Rider, Wild Coast, the Audubon Society, and Friends of the San Dieguito River Valley as well as Roberts and Slater-Price asked that the lower third of the EOL be restored as mitigation for use of the upper 2/3 for parking. San Diego City Council President Pro Temp Sherri Lightner also supported some mitigation. The District claimed that they needed the extra parking as a result of restoring the SOL to wetlands and offered another site, east of I-5, as mitigation.

After discussion and input from staff, the Commission voted 9 to 2 to give both sides one month to seek a compromise with an apparent majority agreeing that mitigation was required to compensate for the loss of wetlands on the EOL and GDR.

UPDATE: At their October 18 special meeting the San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority Board of Directors voted unanimously to reaffirm its position that the lower third of the EOL wetland had to be preserved, and that it would seek an immediate legally binding deed restriction on these wetlands. In an effort to seek a compromise with the District the JPA Board offered a 10-year delay in the implementation of this deed restriction.

 

Local Market Support
Nicole Holliday | Crest Road


There are rumblings the 22nd DAA is considering, among several income generating ideas for the EOL (East Overflow Parking Lot) and GDR (Golf Driving Range) sites, creating a Farmers Market. While there is not a formal proposition at this juncture the Del Mar Farmers Market board is taking a proactive role in voicing our concerns.

Any additional shopping choices in the greater Del Mar area will provide different options. We have seen markets come and go in recent years and while some may think we should focus on the impact of this possibility, we choose to remain focused on our guiding principles and mission statement which have us focused on what we do in the city of Del Mar.

We are confident we will continue to flourish as a community focused Farmers Market that donates all profits back into the Del Mar and farming communities. Thank you for supporting our market. It is because of you that we are able to do so much for Del Mar.

 

 

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