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Sheriff’s captain revives call for additional deputy

ENCINITAS — The Sheriff’s captain that oversees Encinitas substation has revived a request for an additional deputy to help patrol the beaches and downtown that was rejected by the council during last spring’s budget talks.

Sheriff’s Captain Theresa Adams-Hydar stated her case informally to the City Council during a city workshop and retreat Wednesday at the Encinitas Ranch Golf Course.

She said that the additional deputy will allow her to create a two-deputy patrol unit that will focus solely on the city’s beaches and historic core, which play host to a litany of issues ranging from rowdy behavior at the city’s night spots to drug use in alleys and panhandling and other activities by homeless people.

“I really think this is the time for the two-man team,” Adams-Hydar said. “I would strongly urge the council to grant the request.”

Originally, the City Council voted 3-2 in June against adding a deputy. The council majority of Lisa Shaffer, Tony Kranz and Catherine Blakespear said at the time they would need more concrete information to justify the additional $200,000 it would cost to hire and equip an additional officer.

Adams-Hydar said that over the summer she deployed some of her existing deputies into the beaches and downtown to perform proactive police work, and said they received very positive feedback from local business owners and residents.

The City Council is expected to receive a report on Oct. 28 on code enforcement and law enforcement activity in the downtown area, which could determine whether the council will grant the request.

Wednesday’s retreat focused on the city’s strategic plan, and gave the council to adjust its priorities or add additional items to its two-year agenda.

The council ultimately added one item to its long-term plans: a project to address some of the stormwater runoff issues that have plagued Leucadia for years.

While the price tag for a wholesale fix to the drainage issues would top $90 million, the council said the city should make interim fixes one of its priorities.

“We’ve talked about this for quite some time,” Mayor Kristin Gaspar said. “I think that while we don’t have the capacity to complete a $90 million project, there are other projects we can explore, and                           we should.”