Scripps Ranch Loses A Good Friend

Longtime Scripps Ranch resident and all- around outstanding citizen Steve Allen suffered a fatal heart attack while running around Miramar Lake, which he loved to do. Steve was a fine athlete and at 61 years old was a real "Old Pro."

An active member of the Scripps Ranch Old Pros, he was enthusiastically active in, and supported, myriad Ranch activities for youths and adults. A fixture at community events like the 4th of July 10 K Run, his happy smile and wonderful attitude always brought a happy aspect to the task at hand.

It can be said of Steve and his actions that "the world is a better place that he passed through," and that’s certainly true for Scripps Ranch. He will be missed. We extend our deepest sympathy to his family for their loss. For more about Steve, please see the article on page 19.

When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again

The combat action in Iraq is now virtually over and the work of reconstruction begins. We are already welcoming back some of the veterans of this conflict, and San Diego is rolling out the red carpet for them. To all of you who have sent letters, helped families in need, and supported the troops, a job well done in the finest American tradition.

Whether or not you endorsed the war, when you support the troops you can take pride in the humane–if war can possibly be humane–and professional way the soldiers, sailors, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard did their duties.

Plan to attend a reception for the returning warriors and thank them for their service. Also, remember those who gave their lives or were wounded.

And the Letters Came Tumbling Down

Yes, our request was heeded by the Water Authority, and the large shiny letters on the new rock wall opposite the library at the Water Plant have been removed and are in storage. We are evaluating where they could be used again–with the artist, if possible.

The holes in the wall will be filled in by the stone mason, and the wall, which all agree is quite attractive, will be restored. I have asked the city to remove the small metal sign in front of the wall that adds little to the appearance of the wall and the street. Thanks to Larry Gardner and the artist for responding to our request.

Construction of the New Aqueducts

The construction work for the new aqueducts that is going on along Scripps Ranch Boulevard and Mira Mesa Boulevard has certainly provoked a lot of comment. This in terms of delays, rattling metal plates, slippery roads, unrepaired roads, and other such things.

The contractor asked for permission to accelerate the work and has been granted permission to work from 8 am until 8 pm for the next two weeks. We hope it is done by then. There will probably be additional delays at this corner, so please be patient and be safe. One of the reasons for the delays is that they encountered very hard rock that must be drilled and then chipped out rather than simply excavating. Blasting could do the trick, but right under Nob Hill made that impossible.

I-15 Improvements

A special ceremony was held in the Business Park overlooking I-15 to celebrate the groundbreaking of the long-awaited and much-discussed widening of I-15 in our area. The McMillin Companies and Brookfield Homes, along with Councilmembers Brian Maienschein and Jim Madaffer, CalTrans officials, and Scripps Ranch residents all attended the celebration. (See page 21).

The I-15 widening is planned to help ease the traffic and to anticipate the impact of the traffic generated from the new Stoneridge–formerly called Rancho Encantada–project south of Pomerado Road in Council District 7. The $3 million donated by the McMillin Companies and Brookfield Homes comes at a time of austere state funding.

CalTrans has developed a $40 million project to add additional northbound and southbound lanes on I-15 from Miramar Way to Scripps Poway Parkway. It is hoped that these and another additional "flow through" lane will assist in the traffic flow from Pomerado Road. Although $3 million had been promised by the McMillin Companies and Brookfield Homes, it was our concern that the state funding would dry up, but it did not.

So, the release of the money allows the work to proceed at least a year in advance, an almost unheard of action for this type of work. We hope this project will be the first of additional increments needed to handle the overwhelming traffic on I-15 and its impact on corridor communities like Scripps Ranch.

This is the result of excellent collaborative work between all elements of the City Engineering Department, CalTrans, and, of course, the hard work of your neighbors in the planning groups and in the Big Five. Yeoman work was done by all in the Scripps Ranch tradition. Now, it is up to CalTrans to complete the work swiftly and with as little interruption of traffic flow as possible.

Status of Planning Groups

I received a number of phone calls after an article in The San Diego Union-Tribune reported some actions by the Board of Supervisors affecting the county community planning groups. The concerns expressed were that this was the opening salvo for a San Diego city action to downgrade the influence and impact of our community planning groups by city planners or developers by citing faster action, efficiency, and such.

I checked with Scripps Ranch resident Gary Pryor, the San Diego county director of planning mentioned in the article. To allay any concerns as to our community planning groups in our area:

  1. The Board of Supervisors has no authority in matters pertaining to land use in the city and/or the functions of city planning groups;
  2. The change in county policy mentioned, I-63, pertained only to the planning process in the county unincorporated areas; and,
  3. The change to policy I-63 requires the county planning director to immediately notify and solicit comments from the appropriate community planning or sponsor group prior to rendering a decision.

Although we have heard rumblings in the past of claims of delays in planning by planning groups, we have always made our contributions as recommendations to the city, and to my knowledge have never held up any project–period. Our planning groups have performed an able and needed service to San Diego and, of course, to our community and will continue to be needed.

City Financial Strains

The announced budget and service cuts proposed, and the potential of even greater cuts, will affect the city’s capability to continue to provide some services that we are used to, as well as to respond to citizens’ requests. We will not be exempt from these it seems.

This will mean that our already traditional self-help attitude may require greater effort by all of us. This could mean some effort on your part to:

  • Sweep your sidewalks and gutters when you cut the lawn, as street sweeping will be reduced;
  • Make sure your garbage and recycled items are placed on the streets on time, and pick up your area;
  • Contribute greater effort on Clean Up Days and such to keep our Ranch clean and green; and,
  • Contribute more time to activities such as the Scripps Ranch Library Center, Scouts, athletic leagues, and churches, which will need more in terms of your volunteer effort.

We will continue to insist we receive our fair share of available city funds and services. We know that the total amount available will be reduced and we can complain or request, but we will probably receive only limited response.

4th of July Parade

As you can read in the Newsletter, planning for a wonderful 4th of July celebration is almost complete. Please see the application form for your neighborhood entry on page 8. Fill it out and send it in without delay, and join the fun.

The theme is an easy one to use to build a float, "Youthful Spirit." And, of course, you can be patriotic and do your thing. By all means, plan to attend the parade and then come to Hoyt Park for the celebration. We will have food, music, face painting, and much more.

We hope to have a USMC Color Guard back from Iraq in time to join us, as well as other equipment and personnel. This is without doubt the biggest community event of the year and fun for all. Also fill in and send in your application to participate in the Old Pros l0 K Run and bicycle ride. Yes, the Miramar Dam is scheduled to open for the event.

A Good Deed

It is always a pleasure to report a good deed and this is one. A Scripps Ranch mother had left for school with her son, and they stopped at the Donut Touch in the shopping area off Scripps Poway Parkway for a quick breakfast. She paid her bill and inadvertently left her wallet with about $100 and only a Blockbuster ID in it. Ben Aizati, the owner, called her that afternoon and, before she even knew the wallet was missing, told her she could come and get it.

As the mother said, "It is such a great feeling to live in a community where I know my family is safe and when I do forget something…a caring soul is looking out for me." Wonderful! Thanks to a local merchant, and all local store owners who support our community and deserve your business. I thought you would like this as much as I did.

Your MAD at Work

An 81-year-old woman visiting the library tripped and fell going to feed the ducks at Evans Pond. Luckily, she was not badly hurt. However, your Landscape Maintenance Assessment District (MAD) crews immediately went out the next day and removed two trees that could be in the way of pedestrians. They ground down the stumps, added an asphalt ramp from the parking level, and brought in a load of decomposed granite to raise the level of the walk so no one would trip over the curb.

The MAD has a small city contract with the Library Department to maintain the exterior of the library and the pond, which is a part of the Scripps Ranch Library Center. This extra work was done immediately. Although it was over and beyond the contract, it was needed and it came out of our contingency funds and used for a good purpose. Immediate and needed service thanks to Layton Galloway and our crew. Thanks.

Happy Mother’s and Father’s Day

To all the mothers in Scripps Ranch, I hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day and that your day was a delight. You are appreciated and loved.

June honors fathers, and it is great to have so many involved, loving fathers on the Ranch. Many dads volunteer in sports, Scouts, and so many other activities in our community. Happy Father’s Day to all the terrific dads.

Bob Dingeman Day–May 2nd

Wow, what a rush, and as one young girl said, "awesome," when describing the annual Bob Dingeman Day at Dingeman Elementary School. I want to say how much I appreciate all the hard work that went into the carnival and especially the kind words from parents and children. They touched my heart.

After being the "centerfold" in the April Newsletter, I was asked if I felt like a Playboy Bunny. Not really, but I felt good. Thanks a heap!

 

During the conflict, there was a terrible three-day wind and sandstorm, strangely followed by heavy rain. Some of the newspaper and TV pundits were quick to pick up the words from some of the clerics in Iraq that it was the worst storm in 100 years and was a divine wind with horrible consequences for the American forces.

Of course, some TV and newspaper pundits began to use words like "stuck in a quagmire." The American forces in the lull in the fighting did what all good soldiers do and calmly cleaned their weapons, did maintenance on their vehicles, and hunkered down as best they could.

When the wind died down and the rain stopped, lo and behold thousands of anti-tank and anti-personnel mines and booby traps were exposed. Many lives could have been lost, so they avoided them as they advanced and the demolition teams disposed of the mines. Truly a "divine wind" for the American forces.