• Anu Delouri, spokeswoman for UCSD’s Physical and Community Planning, responded to allegations that Scripps’ Marine Ecosystem Sensing, Observation and Modeling Laboratory (MESOM) is being built higher than the renderings shown to the community during its planning stages.
“The MESOM project is being built per the permits and approvals received for everything that was indicated in the coastal development permits. It has been a long process with the Coastal Commission and there are several conditions that were applied as part of the project to enhance and open up other views to the ocean,” she said. “The university has not deviated from any plans. It has not built the building any different than what it was supposed to.”
Trustee Egon Kafka indicated his hope that the university and community can continue to work together in an intelligent fashion to ensure community members do not feel bereft in the future.
Delouri said she is always willing to provide additional information about any project the community desires.
“It was not our intent to deceive you,” she said. “I come to these meetings as a conduit and if there is ever a time when you want more information about a particular project, you want to see additional plans, I or someone at my office is happy to share that with you.”
• The mayor’s office announced it has restored money in this year’s budget to trim about 7,500 queen and date palm trees in public rights of way throughout the city.
District 1 City Councilwoman Sherri Lightner’s office has requested that all queen and date palms throughout the village be evaluated for inclusion in the tree-trimming project.
Kafka, who contacted nearly 30 arborist companies several months ago for bids on tree trimming in the Village, said he received “compellingly low bids” from many of the companies.
“I was surprised at how cheaply this could be done,” he said. “As far as La Jolla goes, I’d really like to see this done as cheaply and efficiently as possible.”
He also urged that the tree-trimming program be expanded to include proper maintenance of the trees.
• Lighter’s office has partnered with Urban Corps to help fund a cleanup effort of major roads, including graffiti removal and weeding, throughout the district from October to November. The funds were sourced from savings in the councilwoman’s office budget.
“If this works out well, we’re hoping to continue to save money in our office budget to do that on a regular basis,” said Lightner’s representative, Erin Demorest.
• Kafka announced that he found a local landscape company to care for the hanging planters throughout the Village for $6,000 per year, nearly $20,000 less than what the La Jolla Village Merchants Association was previously spending on maintenance of the Village’s 122 hanging planters.
“If this community can learn a lesson, it’s to keep it cheap and cheerful,” he said. “The things that we can do something about, let’s work together to make things shiny without breaking the bank.”
• San Diego County recently debuted a new, free iPhone and Android-compatible app, ReadySanDiego, which provides up-to-date emergency and disaster preparedness information, ann-ounced Supervisor Ron Roberts’ representative, Sterling McHale.
For more information, visit www.sdcountyemergency.com.
Town council news
• The La Jolla Christmas Parade and Holiday Festival Committee continues to seek funds for this year’s annual parade, announced parade chairwoman Ann Kerr Bache.
“I can’t emphasize enough that we need, as a Town Council, to step up to the plate,” she said. “If by next Town Council meeting we don’t have enough funds, we really need to see if we can have the parade or not.”
Tax-deductible donations can be made at www.ljparade.com.
• The next LJTC Sunsetter will take place at Barfly from 5 to 7 p.m. on Oct. 18. Members who come dressed in costume will get in for free, and nonmembers who come in costume will receive admission for $5.