Our Readers Write: Letters from the June 23 issue

Creative solutions needed to end sea lion ‘crisis’ at La Jolla Cove

Kudos to La Jolla Light for its recent stories shining light on the La Jolla Cove situation. Year after year, we wait for the City of San Diego to act in a timely manner, but we’re all getting gray while the number of sea lions and the areas they’ve made into their homes (not to mention the accidents and citizens’ health concerns) are growing. Some meetings on the subject look like the Montagues and the Capulets fighting! Please remember how that ended and let’s hope that our community will do better!

Yes, this is a controversial situation with pros and cons. The animals are furry and funny, blessed with natural curiosity and expressive eyes that melt your heart, but they can also become aggressive and contribute to shark sightings!

Additionally, they are carriers of phopivirus, related to human hepatitis A (transmitted through physical contact or consumption of water). Perhaps adults may swim successfully without swallowing a few drops, but what about children? Who’s ready to trade the beach summer joys for snapping a few sea lions photos? Not me!

I doubt that we can afford to drive away any more businesses or lose tourism revenue from the visitors who seek fresh ocean air.

Seems there’s always somebody who ends up frowning at any proposed solution to the sea lions and The Cove Stench. So how about one more idea? Since the animals can’t relocate to the Coronado Islands … why can’t we build an artificial island where seal pups and sea lions can poop freely and live happily ever after?

In regards to another recent La Jolla Light story, “We’re backpedaling here!” May 2 issue, which talked about bicycle paths in La Jolla, I’ve been biking to work through our Village since 1986, and that puts me in the 1 percent category of San Diegans who do.

Jaruska Solyova

Leave the animals at the beach in peace

I am grateful to letter writer Nancy Lee for expressing concern for sea lions and their pups near The Cove. The suggested inhumane treatments (from residents at the recent La Jolla Town Council meeting) makes me both angry and sad at my neighbors. We can simultaneously enjoy our beautiful beaches while leaving wildlife at peace.

Courtney Hibbard

Glad to see city appeal beach closure ban

The Seal Conservancy thanks the San Diego City Council for voting 7-1 to appeal the Orange County Judge’s ruling that struck down the annual Seal Pupping Season Beach closure from Dec. 15 to May 15. This case now goes to the Court of Appeals with attorneys from the City Attorney’s office and the California Coastal Commission (CCC) taking the lead on the appeal. The closure was approved by San Diego’s Planning Commission, City Council, Mayor and the CCC.

During the two years of its operation, this elegant compromise brought peace and stability to the beach for the harbor seals. The beach was closed for five months for the seals and open for seven months for beach access during the busy summer season.

We are hopeful that justice will be served and that the horrible ruling that struck down the annual Seal Pupping Season Beach closure will be overturned and that these protections will continue for the harbor seals for when they need it the most.

Adrian Kwiatkowski

Limit the number of events at Scripps Park

In regard to last week’s story on a proposed jazz festival at Scripps Park, we do not need another pay-to-view event there, such as the car show that fences off our public park and takes it away from families, swimmers and snorkelers. The park is for the public, not private profit groups charging admission or fundraising.

La Jolla’s summer Concerts by the Sea program is a great example of public enjoyment at Scripps Park for all. Donors, food sales and raffles support this great tradition. The extra traffic, noise and trash that a jazz festival would generate will be huge. Go to Coors Amphitheater or Coachella for a noisy and crowded scene.

Jack Resnick

Time for leaf blower foes to unite

In response to the letter writer, “Why haven’t we banned leaf blowers?” in the June 16 issue: No, you are certainly not alone. I think thousands of your neighbors agree with you. We just need to find each other.

Leaf blowers produce noise and airborne contaminants. One gasoline powered leaf blower produces as much pollution as 34 automobiles. Leaf blowers are not only a harmful nuance to residents, but they are also very hazardous to the operator, blowing rodent feces and other animal droppings, pollens, mold and fungal spores, insect eggs, gasoline remnants, and toxic chemicals into the air.

I live in one of five multi-family buildings clustered around an alley. From my home office facing the alley, I see this five times every week: A gardener with a gasoline-powered leaf blower appears near one of the five buildings. Deftly, he blows grit, dust and a few odd leaves from the immediate area around one building toward the alley. A bit of the cloud settles in the alley, but a great deal of it rises high enough to deposit on my neighbor’s third-floor balcony, and a lot deposits on my second-floor balcony. The rest ends up in the immediate area around the other four buildings to be blown into the air again by the next leaf blower.

Hundreds of cities have restricted leaf blowers and dozens have banned them outright, including Del Mar. If anyone wants to get involved in pursuing action here, send your name to leafblowersstink@gmail.com

Robert Schreiber

Rec Center playscapes need shading

I was delighted to see Audrey Geisel of the Dr. Seuss Foundation and Douglas Dawson of the Ellen Browning Scripps Foundation made generous donations to the capital campaign for improvements to the La Jolla Rec Center. The article mentioned that the donations will be used for cosmetic changes to the facility, including replacing the audio system and increasing lighting to make the facility safer at night. While those improvements will be beneficial, what La Jolla Rec Center really needs is large shade canopies over the sandboxes and play structures. The Rec has direct sun exposure without any shade, and it’s often too hot for kids to play. A shade cover like the one covering Kellogg Park or canvas shade covers like they have at 4S Ranch Community Park in Rancho Bernardo or Shadow Hill Park in Santee would be great. This would improve the Rec while protecting kids who use the park.

Terren O'Connor

Editor’s Note: Letters published in La Jolla Light express views and comments of readers in regard to community issues. Letters do not necessarily reflect opinions of the newspaper staff or publisher. To share your thoughts in this public forum, e-mail editor@lajollalight.com or mail them to La Jolla Light Editor, 565 Pearl St., Suite 300, La Jolla, CA 92037

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