View of Pier, beach, Strand, Pacific Street and downtown prior to 1930. / Oceanside Historical Society

Oceanside is reinventing a plan to grow its beaches before the sea swallows them whole with a competition akin to a beauty pageant.

Three design teams representing the United States, the Netherlands and Australia showcased everything from a park full of natural dunes to futuristic piers with circular gardens and artificial reefs. We haven’t seen the dollar signs attached to any plan, but a 15-member jury and the City Council could vote on a finalist as soon as January. 

Time is of the essence as the city faces what’s predicted to be a stormy El Niño winter that tends to wipe southern California beaches clean of their sand. 

Carlsbad and other neighbors to Oceanside’s south are keeping an eye on the final solution. They fought the city’s first plan to build hard groins into the ocean in a way some said would deprive them of natural sand replenishment. 

Read the full story, along with some cool historical photos of Oceanside’s beach, here. 

A man stands near the ocean during high tide in Oceanside on Sept. 5, 2023.
A man stands near the ocean during high tide in Oceanside on Sept. 5, 2023. / Photo by Ariana Drehsler

Politics Report: The Assemblyman Running for City Attorney (and AG)

The Politics Report is open to everyone this week. Scott Lewis asked Assemblyman Brian Maienschein, who is running for city attorney, why he also has an account open and is raising money for a run for state attorney general in 2030.

It’s not altogether weird for politicians to have theoretical future campaigns set up but he could say he has no intention to run for attorney general and is just doing this or that with the money. But his top aide did not say that.

This week’s report also has an update on Nathan Fletcher and Scott’s take on why the story of Chula Vista Fast Pitch, the phantom nonprofit that provided workers for local stadiums, is so interesting.

Read the full roundup, here.

VOSD Podcast: Live in North Park

Voice of San Diego’s Scott Lewis, Andrea Lopez-Villafaña, City Councilman Kent Lee and, to the right, Voice reporter Jakob McWhinney on Sept. 6, 2023.

The podcast crew moved their latest show to Original 40 Brewing in North Park and invited City Councilman Kent Lee along for the ride.

Hosts Scott Lewis, Andrea Lopez-Villafaña and Jakob McWhinney dished on the latest in our investigation into fake nonprofit Chula Vista Fast Pitch, which got booted from its two stadium vending gigs.

The crew also talked to Lee about the city’s controversial new camping ban, its longer-term cost-of-living and housing crises and more. 

Listen to the full episode here.

Street Homelessness Is Down – in At Least One Part of Town

A downtown business group’s latest census showed a 17 percent month-over-month drop in street homelessness in downtown and its outskirts. The Downtown San Diego Partnership’s Sept. 1 count was the first tally since police began enforcing the city’s new camping ban.

The most dramatic drop:  There was a 72 percent decrease reported  in areas just outside downtown once lined with tents. As our Will Huntsberry and Lisa Halverstadt previously reported, police cleared longstanding camps in north Barrio Logan before the camping ban went into effect. Interestingly, there were drops in other downtown area neighborhoods but more homeless residents were counted in the Gaslamp and City Center areas.

What the census doesn’t reveal: where unsheltered people have relocated. As our past reporting has revealed, homeless San Diegans often move elsewhere when police crack down. That appears to be happening once again. A Chula Vista organization that serves unsheltered people reported a boom in demand after the camping ban went into effect and some San Diegans say they are seeing more homeless residents in other parts of the city.

Related: Halverstadt and the U-T’s Blake Nelson joined KPBS’s Roundtable late last week to review the first month of the camping ban, the upcoming rollout of a new court system to compel people into mental health care and more.

Meanwhile: Two city-funded shelters haven’t been welcoming newcomers the past couple weeks amid spikes in covid cases.

In Other News

  • The city of Del Mar wants to track short-term rentals with a registry as it begins to ponder new regulations on these types of properties. (Union-Tribune) 
  • Failed radio transmission and a distracted air traffic controller led to a close call between a Southwest Airlines jet and a smaller plane at the San Diego International Airport in 2021, investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board found. (NBC 7)
  • The Union-Tribune broke the news Friday that the United States Navy has agreed to a long-sought deal to hand over a roughly 3-acre waterfront site on Pacific Highway to the Port of San Diego. (Warning: This link is only for subscribers.)
  • KPBS found San Diego police arrest mostly Black and Latino youth for breaking curfew laws intended, police say, to keep children safe during late-night hours and prevent crime. Research shows curfew enforcement has little positive effect in communities.  
  • The San Diego City Council delayed a decision on how to diversify the independent commission that redraws political boundaries every 10 years following a fresh U.S. Census. (Union-Tribune)

The Morning Report was written by MacKenzie Elmer, Lisa Halverstadt and Scott Lewis. It was edited by Scott Lewis.

Scott Lewis oversees Voice of San Diego’s operations, website and daily functions as Editor in Chief. He also writes about local politics, where he frequently...

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