THIS HOLIDAY SEASON .. Like everything else during quarantine, this holiday season will be filled with tough choices and not so normal family time. Despite all the restrictions and mandates we still have so much to be grateful for.
As I struggle to breath under my mask, I am grateful that I can still breathe.
As I feel the roughness of my fingers due to the continuous application of anti-bacterial gel, I am thankful to still have a sense of touch and smell.
I may not be able to get my favorite brand of flour at the store, but I am grateful to still have my fridge and pantry stocked.
Happiness is not a dependency on material things, it is decision we make along the journey of life.
This year has not been kind to some, some have mourned the loss of a loved one or lost a source of livelihood or on the verge of losing it all. Let us hold grace and space for those of us going through a difficult time. Let us remember the beauty of life does not depend on how happy you are; but on how happy others can be because of you.
This holiday season let us remember to have gratitude as front and center of our daily recognizance. Gratitude for all we have, gratitude for who we have and gratitude for all we can share.
With Love, Grace, and Blessings.
UPDATE ON VISTA’S PLAN FOR HOMELESSNESS
[Last year, many of you came to a SVC community meeting to talk about possible solutions to homelessness in Vista. This is an update from the City
on the plan the City Council approved.]
The Strategic Plan to Address Homelessness was approved on March 10, 2020, just before the pandemic began impacting how we operate. Upon
approval we began our Request for Proposals (RFP) process and selected contractors for several of the activities in the plan. Council approved these contracts on August 11, 2020 and we are in our first quarter with the following social service providers: North County Lifeline – Homeless Prevention Program, Exodus Recovery Inc. – Social Worker Outreach Program, and the Alliance for Regional Solutions – Shelter Bed Network.
At this time, we do not have quantitative data to measure program outcomes. However, anecdotally we are seeing success in program and system development. The relationships our service providers are developing to connect resources to create more cohesive approaches to address homelessness is a success. The connection of various stakeholders, such as CalTrans, Sheriff’s department, and our service providers is also a success. There is absolutely more work to be done and more of Vista’s homeless population to connect with.
The consultants who assisted in the preparation of the plan are not currently involved in the work. Additional details about the Plan will be
available in the coming year once we have completed a few more months of our contracts. I will keep you informed of when an update goes to Council to share the Plan update with you.
— Sylvia Solis Daniels, Housing Program Manager
FIRE YEAR 2020 — a bad one
[Vista Fire Chief Ned Vander Pol kindly provided this overview of our wildfires and their toll.]
This year has seen the most acreage burned inthe State of California. Over 4 million acres have burned, making 2020 by far the most destructive
fire season, in terms of acres burned. Unfortunately, the fire season is not over yet, and rains in Northern California are not in the forecast, plus
Santa Ana winds have not yet started in Southern California.
As wildfires burn across the state, it is the combined effort of all firefighters that protect the lives and properties that are threatened. Vista Fire
Department personnel are part of the massive effort of fighting the fires. The Department, at one point, deployed 16 firefighters across the state –
from the Valley Fire in Alpine, to the Red Salmon Fire, near the border with Oregon.
The City of Vista participates in a statewide mutual aid system that accesses fire engines and firefighters from the entire state, so as not to overburden one specific or impacted area. In addition to sending fire engines to fires throughout the state, the Vista Fire Department also assigns personnel to supervisory positions. On the large fire events, there are multiple other ways Vista firefighters assist, and some members are trained as
fireline paramedics, field observers and public information officers. Regardless of the assignment, Vista firefighters are an integral part of the state firefighting effort.
Despite the involvement and commitment to the statewide firefighting effort, the Vista Fire Department is always prepared and staffed to handle
emergencies in the immediate area. San Diego County fire agencies work together to ensure personnel are ready, equipped and trained to respond
to emergencies in our local area. While the time on the firelines takes its toll on firefighters, each member also understands their commitment to
protecting life and property.
Residents can help out by planning for wildfires before they occur, being aware what is happening in their region, and acting when the time comes.
Planning involves creating defensible space around your home, preparing an emergency supply kit, and practicing evacuation scenarios. Staying informed is critical in an emergency and there are multiple ways to stay up to date with the latest reliable information. ReadySanDiego.org is a great
resource for vetted information. The City website and social media channels also share information from the County and other emergency management sites. Most important, when the time comes to evacuate, it is imperative that residents follow the direction provided by law enforcement or other emergency management personnel. This year’s seasonal forecast is predicting more Santa Ana wind events than normal as well as ongoing dry
conditions. These factors contribute to large fire events and now is the time for residents to be prepared and informed.
SVC WELCOMES NEW BOARD MEMBER
South Vista Communities is pleased to welcome Bill Martin as a new member of the board, appointed at the November board meeting.
A resident of the Breeze Hill neighborhood, Bill and his wife have lived in Vista for 35 years. He served as a city planner for 33 years, most recently
as the Director of Community Development for the City of Escondido; also eight years on the Vista Planning Commission.
Thanks for joining us!
WHAT IS THAT PROJECT ON SOUTH MELROSE?
We’ve all watched the trucks and crews working on something along Melrose these last few months. Patrick Vaughan, city inspector for the MCI/Verizon contractor, was kind enough to provide information.
The project is to install an underground fiber-optic network on most of the major streets in North County – a “5G backbone” for the 5G cell system as well as providing a direct fiber-optic communication link for businesses. Mr. Vaughan says the work in Vista will take about a year to finish. Once Melrose is finished, Shadowridge will be next.
The work is accomplished by horizontal directional drilling, 3 feet under the sidewalks. Drilled segments are connected at intervals in boxes set into the ground.