You may have read about the fire plan for Mount Soledad and the quick and massive response they plan to curb any potential disaster again. In answer to the questions I have been asked, no, there is no such plan for Scripps Ranch yet. Although we do have contingency plans for this sort of disaster, there will be efforts to develop fire plans for potential hot spots, including Scripps Ranch.
We are making real progress in our planning for our Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). We have volunteers trained, and we are getting the equipment needed for them to augment the Fire Department. I confirmed with Assistant Chief Bowlin, who is in charge of the CERT effort, that the city will provide the trailer and equip it for action. Our CERT members will provide a truck to tow the trailer for now and position it at our Fire Station 37.
Please be alert. Fire season is here, and the danger from fire caused by the heat and dry conditions is explosive. We do not want another firestorm, and it could burn in the same area. Immediately report any suspicious events.
We want to extend the sincere thanks of the community to SRCA President Marc Sorensen, Executive Vice President Gordon Boerner, and Executive Assistant Kathy Allman for their yeoman services to prepare, sign, and mail the checks to the fire folk from the SRCA Fire Relief Fund. Thanks, folks, your efforts are really appreciated. We continue to contact the remaining displaced residents, and we plan to expend the entire fund by the end of October.
The results of the achievement tests were announced, and out of the five elementary schools in the San Diego Unified School District that exceeded the magic number of 900, Scripps Ranch had three of them--Jerabek, Dingeman, and E.B. Scripps. Our congratulations to the principals, staff, faculty, and, of course, you parents and especially you students who did your best and it showed. We are proud of you!
Please note that the grading and demolition operations have been completed on the new Marshall Middle School site. We have been directed to refer to it as the "New Site for Marshall Middle School" to clearly identify it with the existing award-winning school. The current site will be transitioned into the Ellen Browning Scripps Elementary School campus once the middle school moves.
I hope all paused in our busy lives to remember the horror with which we viewed the destruction of the Twin Towers and heard of the loss of lives. Also, we should remember the plane that crashed into the Pentagon and the bravery of the ordinary citizens giving their lives to force the fourth plane to crash without harming its target.
We were inspired by the countless acts of courage that surrounded this day, and the tremendous spirit of America. God bless America, and God bless the families who lost loved ones on 9-11--another day that will live in infamy.
The amount of training flights has been substantially reduced at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar. However, the air wings and groups deploying on the carriers need to perform night landing exercises on the "land-simulated" carrier deck at the base before they move to the carriers.
This means they must do the flying at night. As this old soldier always says, better we have the sweet sound of freedom than hostile aircraft over our homes. After saying this, we make sure the Marines respect our communities, and they do, as to noise abatement measures.
I admit to being a devotee of washing my car in the driveway. Lo and behold, a condo association was informed by the city that this was not permitted as it damaged the storm drains. Violators "could be fined by the Code Enforcement personnel for continued violations."
As the city-trained Code Enforcement Officer for the Ranch for 26 years, I have never issued a citation on this and questioned it. You may have noticed some storm drains have a dolphin and a note stenciled on them that the dolphins live down stream so do not pollute. It seems soap and oil are the culprits.
So, what can you do? I guess take your car to a car wash. Or wash it so that the water goes onto a grass area and is used for irrigation. If you have any questions, call Martha at the Storm Water Hotline at 619-235-1000. She is very pleasant and cooperative and knows the rules. Not that I like the rule, and I still do not know what we should do.
I announced I needed volunteers to assume the chore of quickly erasing occasional graffiti. I was delighted to get two phone calls: one from a retired individual, and another from a young couple wanting to do their part.
So, I now have two individuals who I will brief and give my supply of equipment to remove graffiti as soon as it is reported. It sure made me feel good to hear that some residents cared enough to step forward. For now, call me at 566-6083 until we make the transfer.
The SRCA purchased a storage container and installed it in the Community Park parking lot. This will save the SRCA several thousand dollars a year. We have not yet completed an inventory of the contents of the present storage rooms, but we will and transfer the items to the new container for easier access.
Please note that the cinder block wall is being "beautified" with a different treatment and special rock accents. Be patient until the signs are completed, and we hope they will look good and present a nice addition to the Ranch.
In the meantime, please do your good community supporter thing and trim back your bushes, and sweep and pick up your gutters and put the debris in the containers for pick up. Please recycle all you can to help the city achieve its goals.
We hope that our experienced and excellent manager, Layton Galloway, continues his remarkable recovery from the very serious complications of his hospital stay and can return to help manage our system. Meanwhile, Bob Murphy meets weekly with me and reviews work that needs to be done, with emphasis on removing trees that pose a safety problem to homes. We continue to respond to your concerns and inspect areas for service. So call me at 566-6083.
This work continues. Yes, I know, slowly. We now have a Ranch resident living on Ironwood who is taking Jany Staley's place as our point of contact. Jany just retired from SDG&E, so we look forward to a major continued effort from her as a superlative volunteer.
The power pole still intrudes into Scripps Lake Drive just past the library, but will be removed when the lines go underground. In the meantime, drive carefully. We asked for a sign reminding of the danger, but it is not yet installed.
As to repairing and resurfacing the streets, this remains an unresolved problem. If the repairs of the streets disturbed by the undergrounding are to be resurfaced or slurry coated, it probably must now be included in the city program.
As you may recall, we got the program planned for last year, with about 44 streets to be addressed--none in the SDG&E area--and the city ran out of money. So, we again will prepare a map and schedule what we can for repair and resurfacing and hope some gets done.
We in San Diego hear, see, and feel every day the Armed Forces of the United States surrounding us. Representatives of all our branches of service are serving in an incredibly difficult and dangerous mission in Iraq. Regardless of your political or personal views, it should be unequivocal that we provide our troops with our unqualified support and prayers for success.
The type of sniping conflict and ambushes is the worst kind for combat soldiers. Americans by training do not open fire first at potential insurgents giving to the hidden insurgents the tremendous advantage.
The servicemen and women are America's best and finest, and despite what seems as never ending negative reporting that portrays only problems and none of the successes, there are many. Will democracy suddenly flower in Iraq? It may not for years. But the ordinary Iraqi citizen at last has the opportunity to make his or her choice, with our help. So continue to support our troops--they are America in action.
We added water in Hendrix Pond, but it drained out from a leak in the dam and overflow. Landsmith, our contractor, is repairing the dam and we will then add more water. We plan to repair the inoperable light on the dam site as well.
The large tree that fell was immediately cut up and removed. As I indicated in the last Newsletter, we have asked the Water Department to add about 10-acre feet of untreated water to Evans Pond, as it is low, and without any rain, it evaporates. Thanks to the Recreation Council, we will do the filling.