Fire News

Garamendi Visit

Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi is returning to Scripps Ranch to meet with fire-affected residents. The meeting is on Friday, Apr. 23, from 6 to 8 pm in the Marshall Middle School Auditorium. It ends promptly at 8 pm, as the commissioner has a plane to catch.

Jim Johnson, Department of Insurance Deputy Commissioner for Consumer Services and Market Conduct, says that in addition to Commissioner Garamendi, there will be Consumer Services officers there to listen to individual concerns. They will not give specific answers that night, but will take your information and start an investigation.

Jim says that in order to be prepared, displaced residents should bring:

  • Consumer Request for Assistance form--Visit the SRCA website at [] for a link to the form, print it, and fill it out;
  • Copy of your insurance policy's declaration sheet; and,
  • Copies of any letters or communications you have had with your insurance company.

Before the meeting, we will have a barbecue starting at 4:30 pm outside the Marshall Auditorium. We have invited the commissioner to join us.

Latest Information

The first home destroyed in the Cedar fire has been rebuilt and the Karvounis family is now home. As of press time, 19 permits have been issued to rebuild homes burned in the fire, that's 6% of the 312 homes destroyed. Another 34 plans are going through the approval process.

The Local Assistance Center (LAC) still operates out of the Information Center. You can find the City Department of Development Services (DDS), Councilmember Brian Maienschein's staff, and the SRCA. DDS hours remain:

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, 8 am-5 pm;
  • Thursday, 8 am-6 pm; and,
  • First and third Saturday of each month, 9 am-1 pm.

Councilmember Maienschein's table is staffed Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, from 8 am to 5 pm.

Insurance and Rebuilding

To many, it is a surprise that there does not appear to be a legal definition of what it means to be "underinsured." Is it the difference between cost to exactly what the home was, using custom or mass-produced homes, and the limits of the policy? Does it stand to follow that other coverages for landscaping, personal property, building codes, and personal property increase accordingly?

Although it may sound simple enough, throw into the equation who should be responsible for setting policy limits? The insured? The insurance company? The independent agent/broker?

Who knew or should have known becomes the question that detracts from the question of how much underinsured someone may be. The lessons being learned will not only impact those who lost their homes but those who have not. A national survey shows that 64% of insured are underinsured on average 27%. Do the math with your own policy.

The SRCA has developed a second survey with input from the California Department of Insurance to help quantify many issues. They include the range of underinsurance, reasons for being underinsured, and if there are patterns of behavior inconsistent with California's Unfair Settlement and Practices Act.

No less than 30 different companies will build these homes. To maximize efficiencies and minimize conflicts, whether it is among the builders or the community, a large group of builders, city officials, and utility providers will meet on a regular basis. It will allow all to see what is working and what is not, and what can be done better.

Updates will be provided in the Newsletter and on the SRCA website at []. If you have any questions, please contact Bob Ilko [[email protected]].

Bob Ilko, Project Phoenix Chair

Mental Health Nights

Councilmember Brian Maienschein, the Scripps Ranch Civic Association's Project Phoenix, and Alliant International University (AIU) hosted the first of three meetings aimed at providing a counseling-oriented type of support to residents affected by the Cedar fire. Dr. Neil Ribner, Ph.D., of AIU, addressed the topic of "Keys to Family Resilience." To help facilitate the gathering, Girl Scout Troop 8337 provided childcare, and Filippi's pizza and soda were served.

Dr. Ribner brings a background in family counseling, and he and his wife are Scripps Ranch residents with neighbors who lost homes. His presentation was aimed at folks with children, advising them about the strains that come from the adjustments people are forced to make in the aftermath of a crisis.

To maintain resilience through these stressful times, Dr. Ribner talked about the importance of perseverance, sustaining hope and optimism, and learning how to improve communication. Handouts from the talk, with advice on improving the resilience of your family, can be found at []. They contain tips for helping children, adolescents, and yourself.

Attendees also benefited from informally sharing their experiences with each other after the presentation. In addition, folks shared ideas about how to cultivate more informal exchanges. Future meetings that evolve will be communicated through emails among the fire folk and postings on the SRCA website at [].

The next Mental Health Night is on Monday, Apr. 12, at the Scripps Ranch Library at 7 pm. Dr. Scott Woolley, director of AIU's marital and family therapy programs, will address issues couples face in his talk, "Creating a Safe Haven Couple Relationship: Tips for Coping During Times of Trauma."

Then on Monday, May 10, Dr. Richard Gevirtz, an AIU professor of health psychology, presents "Stress Management in Stressful Times." Please join us.

Bob Cavanagh, SRCA VP- Communications

Maienschein Thanks Your For Your Support

I want to thank you for the support you have given me since I was elected in 2000. Although I ran unopposed in the primary election, I am grateful for your vote. I look forward to serving you for the next four years. I pledge to continue to work hard, stand up for you at City Hall, and protect our community.

Scripps Ranch residents look out for one another, and when tough times hit, the community bands together in amazing fashion to overcome any obstacle. I feel fortunate to represent a community with so many kind and generous people.

Scripps Ranch is also filled with many talented and dedicated people who spend countless hours volunteering on city and community boards to ensure the Ranch is among the finest places to live in the city. I want to express my gratitude to those volunteers and community groups. It is a pleasure to work with you all.

The rebuilding process is well underway. One home has been rebuilt and others are well on the way. That is evidence of the determination and resolve of Scripps Ranch to move forward.

I continue to serve the needs of fire-affected families by maintaining a presence at the Local Assistance Center. Also, I have partnered with Alliant International University (AIU) and the SRCA to sponsor a series of informational programs to address mental health needs of fire-affected families. Please see the previous article for a report on the first program and dates for the next sessions.

I hope you can find time in your busy schedule to attend these Mental Health Nights, which will connect you with some valuable resources. If you would like more individual counseling with a professional, please contact my office at 790-0122 for assistance with referrals.

Councilmember Brian Maienschein

Old Pros Give Generously

They don't call us Old Pros for nothing. Because when it comes to Old--it's only old with years of generosity--and Pros because the name speaks for itself --we are Pros of the heart with boundless support for others in our community.

Last November the esteemed group of Old Pros organized countless hours and successfully held a "Fire Relief Benefit Golf Tournament" to help our neighbors who lost homes. This event was spearheaded by Shelly Hall, Dave Linaugh, and Ryan Shadburn. These men, along with many other "old pro" brothers, pitched in with ideas, collected sponsorships, advertised, and did so much more.

They carried out a spectacular event. More than $20,000 was raised, and every dollar was spent in restaurant gift certificates for 253 families in Scripps Ranch. Remarkable! Way to go, guys!

Special thanks to the Rancho Bernardo Country Club, who graciously donated the entire golfing grounds for our event. Thanks also go to United Airlines and Mission Valley Pools and Spa, who contributed to a very entertaining live auction. What great support!

This event was a time to play, have fun, and be together with our friends. But I can tell you this, every one of us knew this was just not another typical Friday. It was a Friday to embark on an honor to help our neighbors.

Martin Mann, Old Pro Brother

One Family's Story

Darlene Bourdon and her family lost their home on La Colina Road. As they go through the rebuilding process, they have been kind enough to share their story with us each month so we can know what fire-affected families face.

This month Darlene says there is "nothing new to report." They are "waiting, waiting, waiting" for the architect and structural engineer to complete the plans before submitting them to the city.

Thank You's

As the generosity to fire-affected residents continues, so do the thank you's.

  • Marcia Gwin, Stanley Steemer--$3,000 donation;
  • Nicole Miller, Stef & KC, Inc., La Jolla--$375 donation;
  • 1-800-Got-Junk--During sandbagging after the fire, they donated so much time hauling the sandbags;
  • Filippi's Pizza Grotto;
  • Pizza Hut, Scripps Ranch;
  • Hilton Hotels; and,
  • Nick Petro--St. Gregory's Youth Group director.




For many residents, life has returned to normal. For fire-affected families, they live with the tragedy every day and face many obstacles we are not aware of.