News from the City of Carlsbad | May 11, 2023
This week’s City Council meeting included important discussions about environmental sustainability and reducing homelessness, two priority issues identified in the City Council’s 5-Year Strategic Plan. Today I’ll share details on both, plus other news of the week.
- Protecting our environment
- Directing federal funding to meet city homelessness reduction goals
- How to bike to work – or anywhere else – next week
- Hot Rods & Cool Treats returns this weekend
- Classic rock concert at the Schulman Auditorium
- Pop Up Art highlights new exhibit at the city’s Cannon Art Gallery
- Honoring our military, past, present and future
- Get involved: Upcoming meetings
Protecting our environment -The City of Carlsbad is continuing to make progress toward the environmental sustainability goals outlined in the City Council’s 5-year Strategic Plan.
- Completed energy-efficiency retrofits of city facilities.
- Certified eight more businesses through the Carlsbad Green Business Program, which encourages businesses to conserve energy, water and other resources.
- Continued implementing city ordinances related to energy efficiency, installation of solar energy panels, wiring for electric vehicle charging, and alternative water heating in new construction and major renovations.
- Installed electric vehicle charging stations at city facilities.
- Purchased plug-in hybrid and electric fleet vehicles.
- Launched a Home Energy Score Assessment pilot program that provided free in-home consultations by licensed energy experts who then prepare a customized plan for reducing your energy usage. This program was so successful, we currently have a waiting list! I’ll let you know if more spots open up, but see below for other ways you can reduce energy usage.
City staff are in the process of updating our Climate Action Plan, which was one of the first fully certified plans in the region when it was originally approved in 2015. You’ll hear more about the update and opportunities to provide input later this year. LEARN MORE
How you can help protect Carlsbad’s environment -The City of Carlsbad has several programs and policies in place to make Carlsbad more environmentally sustainable and protect our natural environment. But that doesn’t mean individual members of the community can’t also make a difference. You can!
Our city website is a great place to start. Here are some quick links:
- Protect water in our lagoons and ocean from pollution
- Recycle food scraps and other organic materials
- “Skip the stuff” (plastic utensils, paper plates, etc.) when you order takeout
- Increase the use of renewable energy sources
One additional way you can help the environment is to consider switching from natural gas to electricity in your home. “Electrification,” as it is known, was the subject of another agenda item on Tuesday. Many cities have begun to require new buildings to be all electric instead of using a combination of electricity and natural gas. Last year, the City Council asked staff to research whether an electric-only requirement could be part of the city’s Climate Action Plan Update.
Staff presented the results of that research, which included several options for electrification here in Carlsbad.
- The city initiated the study before a lawsuit by the California Restaurant Association against the City of Berkeley challenged local electrification laws.
- Last month, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the federal Energy Policy and Conservation Act preempts a City of Berkeley ordinance prohibiting the installation of natural gas piping within newly constructed buildings.
- Because this ruling would also apply to other California cities, the City Council decided to revisit this issue July 11, when more is known about the final outcome of the case.
City directs federal funding to help reduce homelessness in Carlsbad – One of the City Council’s top goals is to prevent and reduce homelessness and its effects on our community. On Tuesday, the City Council approved $545,490 in federal grants for local organizations focused on this issue.
The City Council awarded grants for the upcoming fiscal year to three organizations with programs to prevent and reduce homelessness, preserve affordable housing and provide fair housing services in Carlsbad:
- Interfaith Community Services: $58,823 to prevent and reduce homelessness by providing rental and utility assistance
- Community Resource Center: $23,000 also to prevent and reduce homelessness by providing rental and utility assistance
- Legal Aid Society of San Diego: $23,000 to provide fair housing services
In addition to the three organizations, the City Council directed $354,569 to the Carlsbad Affordable Housing Fund, which was established by the city to make more affordable housing available for lower income families.
Reducing city funding -City staff also presented a proposed plan to change how the city’s Homelessness Action Plan is funded in the next city budget. The team has secured new federal and state grant funding that can cover nearly $400,000 in costs previously funded by the city. This plan will be included with the rest of next fiscal year’s draft budget when it is presented to the City Council May 23. LEARN MORE
Be safe when you “Bike Anywhere”
With more people working from home, the name of the region’s “Bike to Work Day” has been changed, but not its goal.
“Bike Anywhere Day” will take place next week, with the goal of encouraging people to consider bicycling as an alternative to driving.
City of Carlsbad Pit Stop – Thursday, May 18 6 to 9 a.m.
The Island at Carlsbad 5804 Van Allen Way (at the corner of Faraday Avenue and College Boulevard)
To prepare for Bike Anywhere Day, make sure you’re ready to ride safely by checking your bike’s ABCs – air, brakes, battery and chain. WATCH THE VIDEO
- A – Bike tires lose air quickly. Tires should feel firm and be filled to the recommended PSI listed on the tire.
- B – Worn brake pads should be replaced and your e-bike’s battery should be charged.
- C – Check the chain for signs of rust or corrosion. Remove excess dirt with a clean rag and replace a rusty chain.
Any time you head out for a bike ride remember to follow all traffic signs and signals, wear your helmet and be aware of your surroundings. If you’re driving on May 18, you might see more bicyclists than normal. Please take extra care and share the road.
Hot Rods & Cool Treats
Take a trip down memory lane or just enjoy some family fun at the city’s Hot Rods & Cool Treats carnival and classic car show this Saturday.
Saturday, May 13 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Pine Avenue Community Park 3333 Harding St.
Play vintage carnival games like ring toss, frog hopper and more
Enjoy oldies music, face-painting, crafts and a fun zone
Build your own sundae at the ice cream bar
Vote for your favorite classic car
Admission is free, and no registration is required. Carnival game tickets and food will be available for purchase, including hot dogs and root beer floats. LEARN MORE
Classic rock at the Schulman -Saturday night, you can keep the fun and nostalgia going with a Front Row Saturday concert at the Schulman Auditorium. This week, the band 3 Car Garage will perform rock ‘n’ roll classics and hits from the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.
Front Row Saturday – 3 Car Garage -Schulman Auditorium 1775 Dove Lane 7 p.m. seating- 7:30 p.m. curtain. Seating is first come, first served. LEARN MORE
Pop Up Art at the Cannon Gallery -Please consider stopping by our latest Pop Up Art events the next two Saturdays at the Cannon Art Gallery.
Our arts education staff will be on-hand to guide you through a project based on the new “A Colorful Dream” exhibit at the Cannon Art Gallery. Some of the details are a surprise, but you can expect to see art in a new way when you’re done.
Pop Up Art- Saturdays, May 13 & 20- 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Cannon Art Gallery, 1775 Dove Lane LEARN MORE
Honoring our military – past, present and future – Being a proud Army vet, I appreciated the City Council providing an opportunity Tuesday to recognize Military Appreciation Month in Carlsbad. Joining me at the podium was Deputy City Manager of Public Works Paz Gomez, a U.S. Navy veteran.
Carlsbad has long had close ties with the military. Not only does the San Diego region host about 60% of the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet and serve as basic training for half of all Marines in the country, but Camp Pendleton to our north is one of the Defense Department’s busiest installations.
If you or someone you know is a current or former member of the military, please consider getting involved in our latest public art project, which will sit atop Veterans Memorial Park. You can email email@example.com to be added to the interest list or stay tuned to these updates for details about when that process is kicking off.
The next City Council meeting will be held May 16 at 5 p.m. in the City Council Chamber. Topics to be discussed are:
- A report on city investments for the 2022-23 fiscal year
- The annual permit with State Parks that allows the city to maintain the upper picnic areas and restrooms at Tamarack State Beach and the coastal bluff between Tamarack and Pine
- Extending an agreement with a consultant to develop a plan for a system that remotely monitors and controls the city’s sewer, water and recycled water pipes
- Continuing the storm-related local emergency to repair a sinkhole on Haymar Drive
- An appeal of a Planning Commission decision approving a plan for a research and development building in the Carlsbad Oaks North Business Park
- An update on the city’s ongoing efforts to improve traffic safety, and possibly extending the traffic safety emergency
- A report on ambulance fees
- An update on the local economy and city finances for the third quarter of the current fiscal year
- A $2.2 million loan from the city’s housing funds for the expansion of the La Posada de Guadalupe homeless shelter, the only shelter for people experiencing homelessness in Carlsbad
- Applying for a $1.77 million grant from the state’s Local Housing Trust Fund to be used to support affordable housing and the La Posada expansion
- A possible City Council policy statement covering invocations at City Council meetings
- A request from a City Council member to hold a City Council workshop on the city budget
The full agenda and staff reports are available on the city’s website.
There is one other city meeting on the calendar next week:
● May 15, 5 p.m. – Parks and Recreation Commission
Before I sign off, I want to wish all the moms in our community a Happy Mother’s Day. Thank you for all you do for your families and for the Carlsbad community.
And if you haven’t made it to The Flower Fields this season, the 30 acres of beautiful ranunculus are still in bloom, and the operators just announced the fields will stay open an extra week, until May 21.
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