Our Readers Write: Height measurements, seagull chicks

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Letters to the editor:

Follow the municipal code for height

In the La Jolla Light article of July 14 relative to the LJCPA [La Jolla Community Planning Association] meeting of July 7 (“La Jolla planners deadlock on revised Nautilus Street homes project”), there is a quote attributed to Michael Morton. The quote defines a new “grade” from which the 30-foot height measurement is taken.

What is stated in the article is gibberish. On the other hand, the municipal code for height measurement is clear and unequivocal and stated correctly by Mr. [Phil] Merten: “Structure height is measured from the existing grade or proposed grade, whichever is lower.” “Existing grade” is defined there also.

I can guess the code section that Morton is trying to use is that for basements, but careful reading of the code section relative to basements will show that the building height, i.e., the roof elevation, cannot be made higher by including a basement — at least not legally.

The municipal code is not that difficult, particularly if you think of the intent of the law.

David Little

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Be careful with seagull chicks

This is the time when gray seagull chicks are in the streets of La Jolla since coming down from nests but not yet able to fully fly. These gulls are not yet fully developed and cannot move quickly so are finding themselves on porches, patios, alleys and streets. They can glide down to streets but don’t have strength to fly up again for another one to three weeks.

Just [on July 17], people were seeing a run-over gray chick on Prospect Street. Last year around this time I saw two gull chicks as roadkill in The Village.

The San Diego Humane Society wildlife rescue told me it’s best to go around the chicks on the ground, not move them, as the parent will still feed them until they get strong enough to fly. The Humane Society will only pick up chicks if injured.

If you see any injured birds or animals, call the Humane Society at (619) 299-7012.

Tina Mertel

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What’s on YOUR mind?

Letters published in the La Jolla Light express views from readers about community matters. Submissions of related photos also are welcome. Letters reflect the writers’ opinions and not necessarily those of the newspaper staff or publisher. Letters are subject to editing. To share your thoughts in this public forum, email them with your first and last names and city or neighborhood of residence to You also can submit a letter online at The deadline is 10 a.m. Monday for publication in that week’s paper. Letters without the writer’s name cannot be published. Letters from the same person are limited to one in a 30-day period. ◆