published by Del Mar Community Alliance. Inc.

Inside the july 2020 Print Issue

Click on cover for the JULY 2020 print issue in pdf format.

COVID-19 articles are marked by a red dot.

Brush for Brunch:
One answer for wildfires, no kidding, is goats.

Julie Maxey-Allison

  EDITORIAL Summer’s Silver Linings

Back to Business
Julie Maxey-Allison

No Easy NUKE Solution:
Task Force Report Released

Don Mosier

Scary NUKE Scene
Cathy Iwane

Pick it Up
Valérie Dufort-Roy

  Virus Vitriol:
Dealing with COVID-19

Don Mosier

Move It
Danica Edelbrock

Roving Teen Reporter:
Grading Grief

Neha Pubbi

Back to the Beach

COVID Cost Cuts
Tom McGreal

Clean Energy Alliance Funding

Bud Emerson

Traveling Tomatoes
Linda Chisari

Video Voices:
Design Review Board Meetings

Don Mosier

Let Our People Meet:
Advisory Committees

Jeff Barnouw

Winston Talks End
Councilmembers Dwight Worden and Sherryl Parks

Bluffs Going Going Gone
Photos Julie Maxey-Allison

Housing Blending
Ann Gardner

Fairground Housing Options
Mayor Ellie Haviland and Councilmember Dwight Worden

Sand Dollar$
Julie Maxey-Allison

Blue Carbon Treasure
at the Bottom of Our Lagoon

Geoff Criqui

DMF: JULY 2020

Ashley Simpkins

Extra copies of print issue available at Farmers Market.


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August 2020

Update 09/03/2020
Inside the September 2020 Print Issue

Click on cover for the SEPTEMBER 2020 print
issue in pdf format.

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It’s Up to Us

Francis V. Chisari, M.D.
Crest Road

I write this in support of the City Council’s recent decision to enforce the wearing of masks in public. Is it perfect? No. Are opposing arguments understandable? Yes. Is it necessary? Absolutely. Why? Because with it we can defeat this virus in a matter of months, even without a vaccine, if we all follow the rules to wear masks, practice social distancing, and avoid crowded spaces, especially indoors. But, to do so, all of us must do our part … yes, all of us, and we must do it uninterruptedly for a solid 3 to 4 months. Let me explain why this makes sense.

I’m a virologist. I’ve studied deadly virus infections for the past 50 years. If there is one thing all viruses have in common, it’s that they must spread from host to host in order to survive. Spread. That’s what viruses do. And this one will continue to spread unless everyone, yes everyone, does his or her part to shut it down. Unfortunately, given human nature, some of us will refuse. Viruses love that aspect of our species. They absolutely love it. They need it to survive.
So, how does the new coronavirus spread? Two ways. First, inside big water droplets that explode from your nose and mouth when you sneeze and cough, or that sputter out when you talk or sing. Second, inside tiny aerosol particles that gently puff out of your mouth like a cloud every time you exhale and hang in the air for a long time. The big droplets only travel a few feet before they fall harmlessly to the ground unless they hit you in the face first. The aerosols, however, drift along on air-currents like puffs of smoke that waft into the face of everyone in their path and start a new infection. Think of it like “second-hand cigarette smoke” that you can smell when you come into a room that was vacated by a smoker. You didn’t smoke that cigarette, but the carcinogens in that smoke can give you lung cancer. In this case, however, it’s “second-hand virus” you’re inhaling, and they can give you COVID-19.

But, if everyone follows the rules, after 3-4 months of following the rules the virus will have nowhere to go. The hitch is, we all have to follow the rules. If everyone does, we can defeat the virus. If some of us don’t, it will be with us for years, even if we have a vaccine.

Why won’t a vaccine be enough? One reason is that not everyone will agree to be vaccinated. Another is because there’s likely to be a segment of the population that, for genetic reasons, will not mount a protective immune response to the vaccine. Another is because we don’t know how long immune protection will last after vaccination. So, while a vaccine will be hugely beneficial for those who mount a protective response, it won’t protect everyone, and the virus will continue to spread in the unprotected population and be with us forever.

So, with or without a vaccine, we will need to wear masks, practice social distancing, and stay out of bars, restaurants, theaters, house parties, work, school, etc, to eradicate this virus. The bad news of course is this is devastating for us personally and for our economy. The good news is we can wipe out the infection right now, even without a vaccine, if all of us follow the rules. I know, I’m repeating myself, but that’s the message. That’s how we win this battle.
Why 3 to 4 months? That’s how long it takes for the virus to run its course in already infected patients and spread to new, susceptible, hosts so it can survive. If those new hosts are protected and protecting each other by wearing masks, social distancing, avoiding crowdes, especially indoors, there’s no place for the virus to go. Also,that’s how long it took to control the virus and allow economies to open in China, South Korea, New Zealand, Italy, and elsewhere. If they can do it there, we can do it here. But, it will be hard. And in today’s world, if something requires self-discipline, sacrifice and hard work, it also requires enforcement. That’s what our City Council’s enforcement decision is meant to do.

continued from just above


City to launch face mask education and enforcement program

To keep Del Mar as a safe place for all to enjoy, on August 3 the City Council approved a face mask education and enforcement program that is set to begin August 10.  

The program will employ Sheriff’s deputies to work partial shifts two days per week to patrol the beach, Seagrove and Powerhouse parks, Stratford Court, Camino del Mar, and other areas with high foot traffic.

Face covering requirements to be enforced are spelled out in State and County public health orders. As established by the State and County, violations are prosecuted as misdemeanors and can be punishable with fines of up to $1,000 and jail sentences of up to 90 days, as determined by a judge.
Throughout Del Mar, signage and communications of many varieties remind residents and visitors to wear a mask. Notwithstanding, the City continues to receive complaints that members of the public are ignoring public health orders that require face coverings when social distancing is not possible.
The work will be assigned to Sheriff’s deputies -- as opposed to parking enforcement officers, lifeguards or other City staff – because they are appropriately trained and equipped to handle enforcement of matters of this nature.
Efforts will focus on education first, followed by enforcement.
The pilot program includes signs and a public information campaign.

Open the face covering enforcement staff report (PDF)
July Print Issue
Brush for Brunch:
One answer for wildfires, no kidding, is goats.

Julie Maxey-Allison
The threat of a wildfire sparking is a constant concern and it is always the right time to clear overgrown and dead vegetation. Although neither the City of Del Mar nor the City of San Diego employ goats in land management for fire protection, the cities of Laguna Beach, Anaheim and Lemon Grove do and have for some time. Laguna Beach Fire Marshall James Brown reports “We have been using goats for fuel modification since 1991, and they are a very important component of our wild land fire prevention program. Currently we have three herds working in the city, with a fourth one coming.” Anaheim goats Chewy, Spot, Pokey, and Peggy and others, often named by residents, work to clear vegetation as part of the city’s fire prevention plan. The City of Lemon Grove has hired goats for the last eight years in conjunction with Heartland Fire and Rescue and the Environmental Land Management company to “clear a sizable parcel of land in Lemon Grove that includes a canyon with residential houses at the top, along the ridge line. Around 200 goats are released on the site, divided into smaller sections, to remove the brush fire fuel,” reports Elette Nash, Fire Marshall of Heartland Fire and Rescue. “The goats clear a defensible space against wildfires, protecting the surrounding residential neighborhood. Goats, environmentally friendly, do not disturb the soil, so there is less erosion to pollute the watershed. Goats are able to access parcels of land with steep terrain that would otherwise require hand cutting of fuel zones.”

The Sandpiper Regrets
the omission

Due to an editing error, the last paragraph of Tom McGreal's article on page 9 ("Covid Cost Cuts") was omitted from the Sandpiper print version. The full article is available here, and we urge readers to read the full story. We regret our error and hope that our readers understand.



but beach and businesses open

The Fourth of July fireworks display at the Del Mar Fairgrounds is cancelled. But our beach will be open throughout the weekend, with plenty of staffing and sanitizing to keep visitors safe.

Del Mar’s Fourth of July parade also is cancelled. But our downtown businesses are open and welcome your visit.
As America celebrates its independence, the City of Del Mar is committed to following public health orders. We ask that our residents and visitors do the same: Wear a face covering, keep six feet of distance from non-household members, wash your hands frequently and stay home if you feel sick.
In observance of the Independence Day holiday, the Del Mar Civic Center will be closed on Friday.

However, the three-day, Fourth of July weekend will have lifeguards, parking enforcement officers and beach maintenance technicians scheduled to start early and work late. The Sheriff’s Department is deploying extra deputies.
The private use of pyrotechnics is against the law.
Portable restrooms are on order for Powerhouse Park and five locations near the beach. All of them are scheduled to receive multiple cleanings and disinfection treatments.

Tow-away zones are planned along segments of Stratford Court and Ocean Avenue. A temporary loading zone is planned at 20th Street.
As the Department of Community Services works to keep visitors safe, visitors are asked above all else to be courteous and respectful of each other.

July Print Issue
Virus Vitriol:
Dealing with COVID-19

Don Mosier MD, PhD

The virus that causes COVID-19 disease, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), first was transmitted to humans in late 2019. It is a new virus causing a new disease that has now (as of June 28th) infected more than 10 million people worldwide and caused more than 500,000 deaths, including more than 125,000 in the US. There is still a lot we don’t know about the consequences of infection. Why are some infected individuals asymptomatic (as many as 40-50%) while others die from the infection? Do individuals who recover from clinical disease return to normal health or do they suffer long-lasting organ damage? Do individuals who recover from infection develop protective antibodies, and how long do they last? How easily is the virus transmitted by airborne routes? Six months into the pandemic, none of these questions have satisfactory answers. We will have to wait for solid, peer-reviewed scientific studies to understand more about this disease. I respect the attitude of my friend Dr. Anthony Fauci, who is not afraid to say “I don’t know the answer to that question.”


July Print Issue
Roving Teen Reporter:
Grading Grief

Neha Pubbi | Torrey Pines High School Junior


The Sandpiper editors would like to thank its outgoing roving teen reporter, Dhathry Doppalapudi, who will be moving on to the University of California San Diego in September to study computer science. We would also like to welcome Neha Pubbi, our incoming roving teen reporter, who is currently a Junior at Torrey Pines High School.
Dhathry Doppalapudi   Neha Pubbi

COVID-19 has changed the normal for everyone. Students in San Diego ended the school year through online and distance learning and with an adapted grading policy, including the San Dieguito Union High School District (SDUHSD). They announced on April 3, 2020 that the district would be implementing a credit/no credit policy, also known as pass or fail. However, due to students’ and parents’ protests and pushback the district board voted to change the policy to a hybrid grading policy, where students have the option to choose credit/no credit or letter grades for each class of their second semester transcript on May 14, 2020- one month away from the end of the semester.

July Print Issue

Back to the Beach

Our beach is open. “We experienced the busiest first half of June that I can recall in my 28-year history working on the Del Mar beach,” reports Chief Lifeguard Jon Edelbrock. There was an influx of “out-of-town visitors who came early and stayed late each day, plus locals and tourists, some wearing masks, some not. With the greater number of beach goers there were the usual challenges of a busy beach with ocean rescues, administering first aid, some enforcement contacts. Street traffic was thick with drivers searching the area for elusive parking.”

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