Community Commentary

Former mayor, supervisor says ‘yes’ to Prop A

As the fourth mayor and 23-year resident of the beautiful city of Encinitas, I am very concerned about the future Quality of Life of all residents if Proposition A is not approved by a majority of the Voters June 18. 

The Encinitas Right to Vote Initiative is probably the most important issue to be placed before the voters since incorporation of Encinitas in October of 1986. Back then, the residents of the five communities joined together to tell the county that they were sick and tired of having their town destroyed by overdevelopment and, finally, by a great majority, they voted to incorporate and thereby put future development into the hands of our new city of Encinitas.

I was a planning commissioner and then-City Council member who reviewed the proposed General Plan, heard the voices of the residents, and voted to adopt the city’s first General Plan.

Over the past decade, due to a City Council majority who had become immune to the wishes of its citizens, Encinitas has fallen under the spell of those elected leaders who are more concerned about the interests of the development industry than of the residents they were elected to serve — choosing to increase the height limits and densities throughout many parts of the city without a vote of the people. That must not continue, and your vote June 18 can put a stop to this unwanted practice.

Proposition A guarantees you a vote on increases in density above those allowed in the General Plan and any increases in height above 30-feet. Prop A will not allow the existing lower residential height limits to be increased. And your right to vote is codified by your vote. It cannot be removed or overridden by a future City Council.

Even the city’s own consultant, Rutan and Tucker, understands that. On page 15 of their report they conclude:

“If passed, the voter approval requirements, extended public notice requirements and absolute height limit would accomplish the goal of voter control and facilitate the maintenance of community character in Encinitas.”

The power is now in your hands and your vote can make it happen. There are huge changes in density and height being currently considered by city staff and various committees. Proposals of four to five stories and density of more than 30 units per acre are under serious consideration. This is your chance to make a difference in the future Quality of Life of your community. Vote yes on Prop A June 18 and take back control of your beloved Encinitas.

Pam Slater-Price served as the mayor of Encinitas in 1990 and was District 3 County Supervisor from 1992 to 2012. She now resides in Del Mar with her husband Hershell Price.



Olivier Canler May 21, 2013 at 9:51 pm

Thank you Pam.

This means a lot coming from an instrumental leader in the North County region. It is refreshing to see this endorsement coming from somebody that has been so instrumental in shaping Encinitas and well tuned with the issues of quality of life in our communities.

Xavier Watson May 22, 2013 at 8:58 am

It is sad that Pam Slater, who left Encinitas long ago for Rancho Santa Fe and then Del Mar, is weighing in on something she knows nothing about. It is also odd that a group from Carlsbad (North County Advocates) is providing the largest amount of funding for the YES on A campaign. Seems more and more like our neighboring cities are trying to determine Encinitas’ future. ALL of our current council members and the most respected community groups in town are unified in their opposition, saying vote NO on A. For me, I’m going with what the locals are saying and Voting No on A.

Lynn Marr May 24, 2013 at 3:56 am

I’m voting YES because I want the public, the guy and gal “on the streets” to be able to have a voice, to have a vote on upzoning or raising height limits. Encinitas was established, incorporated through a public vote, to take back local control, in order to slow and control growth. A public vote is the best way to have a true “needs assessment,” of what we, the people, truly want!

I am grateful for Pam Slater-Price and all of those who are helping to inform the voters with facts. The 5 page initiative (on the City’s webpage) was written and has been defended with careful legal analysis, by a North County Attorney, Everett DeLano, who has specialties (Sections) in Real Property (including land-use, zoning and initiatives) and Environmental Law on his Cal Bar page.

When one goes to the City’s weblink for the initiative, the page comes up, looking like a blank. One has to scroll down to see the text of the initiative, which is actually only 4 1/2 pages in length, as scanned by the City, without its General Plan attachments, and supporting material, which the petitioners, carried with us to show voters, while we gathered approximately 8,500 signatures to qualify the measure for a Special Election!

The Coastal Commission’s review, if necessary, would pose no problems. Lower residential height limits wouldn’t be raised, should Prop A pass; the wording in our current General Plan would be preserved. Existing development over 30 ft. would be grandfathered. Homes on elevated pads would also have vested property rights. Remodels could be done, without a public vote. A public vote would only be required for upzoning, or raising height limits on new development, without already raised pads. The exaggeration, the magnitude of the lies on Prop A opponents’ fliers and mailers, including using logos for which they were told, publicly, they had no permission to use, only exemplifies their dishonesty and desperation.

Pads were raised, in the past, on the Barratt American development, off of La Costa, in Leucadia, to give new owners an ocean view, which took away the view of pre-existing neighbors. Barratt American went bankrupt. That development was a ghost town, for years. The pads didn’t need to be elevated for sewer flow; many subdivisions don’t use gravity feed, but employ pumps. So that excuse was another lie.

The General Plan Amendment, which will become effective when Prop A passes, will bring our zoning code and our Specific Plans back into consistency with the General Plan and our EXISTING zoning definition for measuring height at the lowest of natural or finished grade.

An Orange County Attorney, from a known pro-development lawfirm, Rutan & Tucker, who has neither of Delano’s Sections, and doesn’t live in North County, was paid approximately $55,000 through our City Manager’s selecting him to write a prejudiced, slanted impact report, 37 confusing pages on the City’s webpage, full of conjecture and speculation, not facts, to dissuade Council from supporting Prop A. Joel Kuperberg’s contract was arranged “behind the scenes” with no direction by Council or interaction with the public, including public questions posed at a City Council Meeting, when the contract was, in fact, already a “done deal.” Still, we were not “noticed,” until after it was “too late.”

The City Manager abused his discretion. He should answer to Council and the public, not to insider, expansionist interests needing more and more money to keep up with ever inflating operating and maintenance expenses, expensive Capital Improvement Projects favoring branding, minimizing diversity, promoting insider “economic developers,” over residents and mom & pop businesses. Gus Vina worked, as a financial director? in Stockton, which has gone bankrupt. He received a vote of no confidence from City Council, in Sacramento, according to the Coast News.

Pam Slater-Price’s commentary is a ray of light, a breath of fresh air, in an atmosphere that is full of shady deceptions, betrayals, and misrepresentations. We’re gladly voting YES on Prop A, and we are grateful for this once in a lifetime opportunity to do so!

kathleen2 May 22, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Mr. Watson, you might want to read the history of the incorporation of Encinitas. You can get a copy from the Cardiff Branch Library, Encinitas Branch or the historical society. It’s not a hard read but it will make you greatful to the dedicated, intelligent, hardworking, ever ready with a sense of humor locals that worked to incorporate Encinitas. Oh, by the way, Pam Slater is in the book. This local is voting yes on Prop A

Sheila S. Cameron May 22, 2013 at 4:32 pm


Obviously you know nothing of Pam Slater’s history as a representative for our County District. She very much represented Encinitas all her years in office.

You are not on the side of locals, but clearly aligned with the BIA and out of town developers who have BIG plans to develop Encinitas in a way contrary to every thing we value.

Half the Board of Directors of North County Advocates is made up of Encinitas residents. They advocate for quality of life issues in “North County” – thus the name.

Do not try to throw dirt on the Yes on A community volunteers, Xavier, when the groups you are associating with are so clearly covered with it.

Xavier Watson May 22, 2013 at 5:34 pm

It is truly a regrettable party of Encinitas that people like Kathleen Linderman and Sheila Cameron are so nasty and bully people that do not agree with them as a way to stifle honest discourse. To Kathleen, I more than understand the history of Encinitas and love this community as much as you say you do. So don’t claim that you somehow have higher calling than anyone else in this community. To Sheila Cameron, none one of us want to see Encinitas overrun by development and no one to my knowledge is advocating for this. This is just the old tired rhetoric of it’s the big bad greedy developers. Frankly, I live in a house built by a developer, and so likely do you. If it weren’t for developers, the amazing town we live in would not exist. So please, come up with a better story than your usual one. Prop A is simply filled with big mistakes and the consequences just outweigh any benefits. That is why ALL City Councilmembers are Voting NO and ALL of the major community groups responsible for keeping the things we love about Encinitas safe are voting NO. And I hope ALL informed voters will do the same.

I love Encinitas May 22, 2013 at 8:32 pm

I’m voting Yes because I want to be involved, learn, and participate in these important decisions that will shape the future of my community. It’s very simple.
I tend to be more of a skeptic and while I don’t despise developers, I just think their plans needs to be balanced with the approval of the community members.

I love Encinitas May 22, 2013 at 11:25 pm

The unveiling of the curtain reveals a $8,250 donation from the National Board of Realtor in Chicago. The money trail is getting complicated. Developers are not crazy about Prop A. We did not expect it!

Steve Ford May 23, 2013 at 4:27 pm

Yes on A! Of course the city council is against it. Who wants to give up power? All the “No” folks don’t want to ask permission anymore.

Steve Ford May 23, 2013 at 4:29 pm

P.S. Sheila is a bully and a loon, but she’s right on this.

Candace Kamada May 23, 2013 at 5:12 pm

Understanding and revisiting our motivation in voting for incorporation is critical in comprehending the Right To Vote Initiative before us now. In my opinion, the same spirit and hard work is being expended to give local residents the right
to determine the character and density of their neighborhoods. This seems to be an ongoing challenge. As Bruce Ehlers pointed out in his arguments in favor of Prop. A “The initiative is key to protect residents from the ebb and flow of city government.”

If we aren’t acquainted with our history of incorporation, then we may be doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past. Thank you, Pam for illuminating us on our founders’ collective intentions and helping us get back on a course
which supports local residential control.

Al Ein May 23, 2013 at 10:04 pm

Pfff. this is a joke… do you want Encinitas to look like Manhattan beach or Encinitas? The choice is simple.

Change4Encinitas June 1, 2013 at 10:02 am

Check this out, if you have any doubt who is behind the No on Prop A campaign. Here is the money they have received so far:
-Homeowner to Preserve Encinitas No on A (this is the Doug Long group)

*Gary Levitt Real Estate Development/Sea Breeze: $1,500
Mr. Levitt has an interesting website describing his
rojects and how they were accomplished —

*Dealy Family LLC : $2,500
The Dealy Family (Ecke member)

*Robert Echter: $2,500

*Douglas Harwood (Developer/broker, member of ERAC
pushing for higher densities): $2,500.

*Encinitas Town Center/Ecke: $10,000
Encinitas Town Center is owned by the Zelman Development
inLos Angeles. According to the Zelman Development
information they have “…specific expertise in developing
properties requiring extensive rezoning or new

-Encinitas Residents, Businesses and Taxpayers Opposing Prop A (Principal Christy Guerin)
*North County Taxpayers for Responsible Government $2,500 This is the group that supported Stocks and Muir for the last election and sent out the “We Love Encinitas” mailer during the last election. They donated $2,500

*National Association of Realtor Fund: $8,250 (From Chicago)
*Encinitas Town Center, LLC/Ecke: $7,500
Encinitas Town Center owned by Zelman Development in Los

So about $38K so far with more to come for sure. Any doubt still who is behind the NO on Prop A?
In contrast the Yes on Prop A represents many small donations from concerned residents. The $4,000 donated by North County Advocates from Carlsbad, actually has a lot of residents that are from Encinitas. This group is dedicated to protect our precious natural habitats and fight against development that do no enhance community character and quality of life in North County.
Prop A is a David and Goliath story with the Prop A folks being your average folks, while the No are the realtors, brokers, developers, and large property owners.
Choose your camp wisely!

Comments are closed.