Our Readers Write / Opinion / Letters to the Editor:
Letters to the Editor from the Oct. 26, 2017 issue of La Jolla Light as La Jollans speak out on local issues:
Drug Drop-off Day Oct. 28
The Federal Drug Enforcement Administration and local law enforcement will hold the 14th Take Back Unwanted Prescription Drugs event, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017, in an effort to help people prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs.
Individuals can take pills and other solid forms of medication to one of almost 5,000 collection sites manned by more than 4,000 partners nationwide. (DEA cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps.) Find collection sites at deatakeback.com or by calling 1(800) 882-9539. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.
County continues Hep A outbreak warning
Editor's Note: The San Diego County Board of Supervisors extended the Hepatitis A outbreak public health emergency for another two weeks again on Tuesday, Oct. 24. Through Oct. 19, there have been 516 cases associated with the outbreak, including 19 deaths and 357 hospitalizations. The County's public health officer declared the outbreak emergency on Sept. 1 and the board is required to review the need for continuing the declaration every 14 days.
La Jolla lacks leaders addressing Hep A issue
• I read the two letters last week from the La Jollans who separately witnessed three incidents of public defecation in the month of October 2017 by homeless persons. I was shocked by the response La Jolla Light received from San Diego's County Health Department in how they deal with this potentially life-threatening situation. The County told the Light what the public can do on their own to clean it up!
This is an unacceptable response and way of handling public defecation in light of a statewide Hepatitis A epidemic centered in San Diego, where 19 people have died and more than 420 have been sickened by contacting Hep A from feces left on the streets by the homeless population. The City Council mismanaged this outbreak from the beginning by not doing something to prevent this in the first place, and now the County Health Department is doing the same by not taking steps to deal with this in our community, where three cases of Hep A have been found in La Jolla.
La Jolla Town Council, along with the San Diego City Council, needs to have a better way of dealing with this problem than expecting the general public to "buy plastic gloves, disposable absorbent materials, shovels if needed, disinfectant sprays approved for Hep A, and figuring out proper disposal methods on their own," which I have a feeling most, if not all people, would not do. Whether public facilities need to be provided or some other resolution it, needs to be done immediately by the County and the La Jolla Town Council needs to be involved, as well.
• I hope, as in the past, the La Jolla Light will be proactive in reporting what is going on in our Village! I'm hoping we can take a stand on the following matter immediately! I live in the apartment above the Rangoni Firenze Shoes store on Girard Avenue, and am appalled at the following behavior: Last Saturday, during our 9 a.m. meeting, my work crew and I watched as a homeless person pulled down his pants and defecated right in front of the building as we met inside! This Village is a family destination and we watched as children and adults walked on after getting out of their vehicles! I hope something can be done to prevent this from ever happening again!
Editor's Note: In regard to the human feces observed on public streets in La Jolla, The Light received this response from Mauricio Medina, representative for District 1 City Council member Barbara Bry: "City staff is going to come out to inspect the area. For future reference, you can report the need for cleaning of feces/urine to firstname.lastname@example.org" — MauricioM@sandiego.gov, (619) 236-6159.
Frustration with homeless situation persists
I spoke with a homeless person the other day. He was able-bodied and coherent. He told me he did not like working and prefers to be in a shelter being provided for and does not want to be responsible for anything. That is not acceptable.
Why should others take care of these people? Will they clean up their own toilets and kitchens in the tents that are provided for them? Or are we, the taxpayers, to have the burden of doing so? If they are mentally challenged, they belong in institutions. If they are able to work, then the State of California should provide them employment. They could clean the streets or do whatever job is available. They must not be allowed to loiter, dirty the streets and expose others to Hepatitis A.
Can UCSD buildings legally top 30 feet?
After reading the front-page article in the Oct. 19 Light regarding UC San Diego and its proposed development plans for campus expansion on Torrey Mesa, my question is this: How does UCSD escape the 30-foot height limitation that drives all development west of Interstate-5? Can the journalist who wrote this article report to your readers on this point?
Reporter's Note: Due to the construction approval process UC San Diego must follow, the University does not have to adhere to the 30-foot height limit.
Sound wall on La Jolla Parkway is a moot point
Regarding the article, "Radio silence on Parkway sound wall," in the Oct. 12 issue: We have lived on Ardath Road for 41 years and have easily tolerated the traffic noise. People who choose to live on or near La Jolla Parkway do so, in part, because of quick and easy access to freeways SR 52 and I-5, and the short distance to the beach.
People who prefer quieter surroundings should choose to live in one of La Jolla's quieter neighborhoods, which, of course, will not be as convenient to the freeways. Many houses on Ardath Road have walls to block the traffic noise.
The proposed sound wall for La Jolla Parkway was discussed extensively in early 2015 by the La Jolla Traffic & Transportation advisory board (T&T). Despite nods of approval from La Jolla Town Council and La Jolla Shores Association in 2015, T&T and its chair Todd Lesser had questions regarding a proposed extension to the existing sound wall alongside La Jolla Parkway. T&T questioned the cost (between $1 million and $2 million), the small number of families affected, whether the wall would bounce the sound to residences on the other side of La Jolla Parkway, how wild animals would be affected by the wall, and whether an environmental impact report would be needed.
Card entry access would solve track-use dilemma
A group of residents is seeking the use of the La Jolla High School Track during off-school hours. The recently renovated track is currently closed to the public. It was open prior to renovation. Today, a senior citizen or a youth living on the same street, cannot enter the empty track on a weekend morning for just a half-hour brisk walk or jog. La Jolla has no other level walking facility in the area, much needed by seniors and others. The school's principal and athletic director are not open to this request, citing concerns of vandalism and dog waste. Last week, La Jolla Town Council invited both the school and the residents to present their cases. School officials continue to stand by their position not to open the track to the residents.
A simple solution is an entry code lock or card entry access, but the school is insisting on paid monitoring and hefty use-fees for any activity. Liability concern, if any, could be cleared by users signing a release form.
I hope school authorities will reconsider their policy and allow neighboring residents a limited use of the track with some minor use-rules, dog restrictions and accessible gate entry. I also request the parents and patrons of the school to speak to authorities to help resolve this issue. Even though the primary users are the students, the school is a proud local asset with its track renovation possible through public funding, and sharing its facilities is a very reasonable and inclusive approach, which can only strengthen public support for the school and its future endeavors.
Bridge For Kids thanks its many supporters
The recent "A Bridge For Kids" fifth annual Casino Night was a magical evening, and we want to extend our sincere appreciation to the many sponsors, donors and guests who supported our mission of helping high-achieving, low-income San Diego teens create a bright and successful future. This year's event raised close to $150,000 which will fund sponsorships, SAT/ACT classes, college tours, tutoring, and more programs for our teens. We look forward to seeing everyone next year on Oct. 6 at our new venue.
Last week's La Jolla Light story, "UCSD to release EIR for 11-acre Living Learning Neighborhood," contained an error. In referencing the recently approved Hillel Center for Jewish Life project across the street from the campus for UCSD students, its construction is not a UCSD project.
What's on YOUR mind?
Letters published in La Jolla Light express views from readers in regard to community issues. To share your thoughts in this public forum, e-mail them with your name and city of residence to email@example.com or mail them to La Jolla Light Editor, 565 Pearl St., Suite 300, La Jolla, CA 92037. Letters reflect the writers' opinions and not necessarily those of the newspaper staff or publisher.