The Encinitas Planning Commission settled on an alternative in the odyssey to update the city’s housing plan.

In a unanimous vote, the commission selected the Sustainable Mixed Use Places/Environmentally Superior Alternative, the Union-Tribune reports. All of the plans add mixed-use development in targeted areas, although they differed in exactly which areas and properties would be up-zoned.

For years, the city has struggled to meet state requirements that say cities need to allow an apportioned number of affordable housing units in their land-use plans. This update to the current plan, called the Housing Element, would demonstrate that the city can meet its nearly 2,000-home allotment, though there is no requirement that those homes be built.

Ultimately, the plan must go before the City Council, and an even bigger hurdle: the voters in November.

Encinitas’ Proposition A, passed in 2013, requires voter approval on planning policy changes, so for the city to come into compliance with state law and the terms of a recent lawsuit, it will first have to earn the support of residents.

Rushed Process in RSFSD

Just three days after notifying parents in the Rancho Santa Fe School District that one of the members of the school board resigned, the district found a replacement.

Following an open session interview on May 20, the board chose Scott Kahn to fill the seat previously held by Richard Burge, whose term was set to end in November. The appointment comes amid a search for a new superintendent for the district, and one month before the start of a “window period” that would have prevented an interim appointment.

Burge resigned May 16, and the district held a special meeting on May 17 to discuss how to handle the process. The board solicited resumes for two days, and interviewed four candidates on May 20.

Kahn was selected, sworn in and immediately joined the board to discuss candidates for the superintendent position.

New Home for Arts Org

A nonprofit arts organization recently set up studio in Escondido, after the group’s former home in Del Mar was demolished, Kinsee Morlan writes in this week’s Culture Report.

A Ship in the Woods is hot in the San Diego arts scene, and is set to take advantage of the two acres the organization purchased near Felicita County Park.

“While folks can expect to see some traditional paintings and sculptures inside the house, a handful of artists in the show are creating site-specific interactive installations in the woods surrounding the home,” Morlan writes

On Saturday, the group will host a showcase featuring interactive exhibits in the woods, which will be available for one month.

Job Requirement: Ability to Handle Noise Complaints

Many cities in North County contract with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department to provide police services in their communities. Del Mar, however, has been studying the feasibility of breaking away and creating its own police department for a few years.

On May 16, the City Council directed staff to create a plan to make it happen, according to Coast News. According to a recommendation by the city’s Finance Committee, staff will prepare a formal plan by October, and begin hiring officers as early as December.

The city’s current contract with the Sheriff’s Department cost about $2.4 million for seven officers and use of the other services the department provides, like SWAT and crime labs. A study presented last month said the city could directly hire 15 officers, plus four part-time employees for $2.3 million.

Also in the News

 Political action committees are spending big to oust Dave Roberts in the District 3 supervisor race. (KPBS)

 A brush fire is burning in Pala, and has consumed about 50 acres and one house. (KPBS)

 Some parents in the Encinitas Union School District are upset about the district paying for yoga. (Encinitas Advocate) The curriculum was previously covered by a grant, but next year, those funds run out. Last year, the whole program survived a lawsuit by parents who said it was religious indoctrination. (L.A. Times)

 Escondido Councilwoman Olga Diaz, the city’s lone Democrat on the Council, will seek a third term. (Union-Tribune.) (Disclosure: Diaz is a member of Voice of San Diego’s board of directors.)

 Broken windows at the North County LGBTQ Resource Center are being investigated as a hate crime. (Coast News)

 Escondido residents who are opposed to a reclaimed water facility near their homes gave the City Council an earful, though the project has been postponed indefinitely. (Union-Tribune)

 The Oceanside Transit Center will be under construction while a third platform is added. (Union-Tribune)

Ruarri Serpa is a freelance writer in Oceanside. Email him at and find him on Twitter at @RuarriS.

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