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Arts Commission set to move forward

OCEANSIDE — The Oceanside Arts Commission is moving forward to create a city Master Plan for the Arts after City Council approval on Nov. 18.

The commission will see through development of the master plan with $50,000.

Jonathan Fohrman, commission chair and dean of MiraCosta College school of arts and international languages, said development of a master plan is a high priority.

Fohrman said Oceanside is a big city with numerous distinct neighborhoods to recognize through the arts. He added public arts programs and experiences will be part of the plan.

“A strong public arts program impacts the perception of a place,” Fohrman said.

Much of the master plan will be defined during the visioning process in the months ahead, and include community input.

Discussion on next steps to develop a plan will take place at the commission’s December meeting.

Fohrman said a community outreach meeting on a master plan may happen as soon as February.

Other tasks the commission will tackle in the year ahead are to develop a new harbor memorial for former Mayor Erwin Sklar and set mural guidelines.

Sklar was instrumental in the creation of Oceanside Harbor.

A tree that was planted in his honor had to be removed.

The commission will develop a new memorial to honor his city leadership.

Fohrman said a challenge will be to realize a memorial on essentially no budget.

The commission receives a $25,000 annual budget. This year it was awarded an additional $25,000 to move forward with a master plan. After plan development costs no funds remain.

Fohrman said he still feels a memorial can be completed.

“Some public art pieces aren’t hugely expensive,” Fohrman said. “It’s an important part of the history and development of Oceanside.”

Mural guidelines are also something Fohrman said he sees getting done.

Rules will take into account appropriateness, and foster the creation of more murals.

“They’ve gone up in several places,” Councilman Jack Feller, liaison to the commission, said. “We don’t want them to get out of hand. We want mural standards to go by.”

The commission will look at other cities’ policies, and gather feedback from the public and city council.

“The most important part for us is to be in agreement,” Fohrman said. “We’ll do due diligence on our part.”

Oceanside Arts Commission meets Dec. 7 at 3 p.m. at the City Council chambers.