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News Nuggets: Town Council resumes meetings, blood bank calls for donations, more

From left, Ann Kerr Bache swears in Rick Dagon, Tony Harris and James Rudolph as La Jolla Town Council trustees June 11.
(Courtesy)

Town Council talks short-term rentals at first meeting since March

The La Jolla Town Council discussed short-term vacation rentals and added three new trustees at its June 11 meeting via Zoom, the group’s first meeting since March.

San Diego City Council President Pro Tem Barbara Bry led the discussion of short-term rentals, saying she is “very concerned ... at the amount of housing this city has lost to residents because of short-term rentals. We learned last summer there were 16,000 single-housing units that have been turned into STVRs and, at that time, that was about half of our available housing inventory.”

Bry said she “remains committed to enforcing our municipal code that prohibits them in residential neighborhoods” and that enforcement is a “complaint-driven process.”

Town Council President Ann Kerr Bache said a working group with representatives of many area town councils and other organizations has created documents outlining “good neighbor policies” and other recommendations for addressing STVRs.

“Everybody agrees [that] no matter where they’re located or how many, [STVRs] need to be [required to have permits], there need to be adequate funds, they need to be enforced, good neighbor policies are required and violators need to be punished and removed,” she said.

Bache also led the swearing-in of three new trustees to the Town Council: Rick Dagon, Tony Harris and James Rudolph.

Blood bank announces ‘critically low’ supply; calls for donations


As local hospitals ramp up surgeries delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the San Diego Blood Bank says it is experiencing critically low blood supply and that all blood types are needed.

Safety measures are in place for donations, including required face coverings, cleaning surfaces between donations, reducing the number of people gathering at any one time, screening donors for upper respiratory symptoms and taking their temperature before entering the donor center.

Appointments are required so staff can control the flow of traffic and practice safety measures.

To be eligible to donate blood, you must be at least 17, weigh at least 114 pounds and be in good general health. Appointments are available at SanDiegoBloodBank.org or (800) 469-7322.

Scripps Oceanography launches climate change course online

The Scripps Institution of Oceanography launched the first in a four-part series of new open online courses in May focusing on solutions to global climate change.

“Bending the Curve: Climate Change Solutions” is available to anyone from high school students to retired professionals.

The series includes recorded lectures from 25 experts in climate science, social science, public health, economics, energy technologies, super pollutants and ecosystem management from across the University of California system and elsewhere. To learn more, visit online.ucsd.edu.

Bodhi Tree Concerts cancels ‘All is Calm’ for 2020


For the first time since it premiered the show to San Diego audiences in 2016, Bodhi Tree Concerts announced it will not present its annual holiday production, “All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914,” to end the 2020 season.

“We are heartbroken that we won’t be able to bring our beloved and uplifting holiday concert to our audiences again this year,” said BTC co-director Diana DuMelle. “We look forward to continuing our holiday tradition in 2021.”

For information about the rest of the Bodhi Tree Concerts season, visit bodhitreeconcerts.org.

La Jolla Newcomers Club taking new members

The La Jolla Newcomers Club, which for more than over 50 years has been helping residents get acquainted with their new community and neighbors, is accepting new members.

The club is open to anyone who has moved to La Jolla’s 92037 ZIP code within the past three years.
For more details, visit lajollanewcomers.org.

Immunology Institute looks at asthma, allergies and dust mites

The world is full of house dust mites. While everyone has immune cells capable of reacting to common allergens like house dust mites, most of us have no allergic symptoms.

Still, many people do react with the typical allergic symptoms: sneezing, a runny nose and itchy, swollen nasal passages. Others have a much more severe reaction: a life-threatening asthma attack.

To treat the root cause of allergies and asthma, researchers need to know what sets those patients apart from healthy people.

In a new Science Immunology study published June 12, scientists at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology offer a clue to why non-allergic people don’t have a strong reaction to house dust mites. They’ve uncovered a previously unknown subset of T cells that may control allergic immune reactions and asthma from developing in response to house dust mites and other possible allergens.

Grégory Seumois, director of LJI’s sequencing core and co-leader of the study, said, “This new population of cells could be one, out of many unknown mechanisms, that explains why healthy people don’t develop inflammation when they breathe in allergens.”

Mount Soledad church reopens preschool

Mount Soledad Presbyterian Church at 6551 Soledad Mountain Road in La Jolla has reopened its Little Steps Christian Preschool to children of essential workers and soon will open for children of all workers.

The church also will offer summer church camps in four-day sessions through Aug. 28 under new health and safety protocols. The cost is $220 a week. Learn more at mountsoledad.org.