City Council considers allowing bingo in Del Mar
Charitable games may soon be OK
Charitable bingo games may soon be allowed in Del Mar, but not before some details are ironed out.
At its July 26 meeting, the Del Mar City Council discussed an amendment to the Del Mar Municipal Code that would allow for bingo games at specified locations throughout the city.
Currently, charitable bingo games are not permitted by the city’s municipal code. The draft ordinance, as explained by Del Mar Principal Planner Adam Birnbaum, would establish a process wherein applications for bingo games could be reviewed by the City Council; games operated in residential zones would require a conditional use permit from the city’s Planning Commission.
Per California state law, the bingo games could only be conducted by qualified nonprofit organizations. The bingo permit process would cost $50 and be in effect for two years.
Behind the ordinance is the 22nd District Agricultural Association (DAA), the governing board of the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Representatives from the 22nd DAA asked the council to adopt the ordinance so that charitable bingo could take place, on a daily basis, at the Fairgrounds’ Surfside Race Place. Proceeds from the bingo games would go to the Don Diego Scholarship Fund and to fund capital projects.
If it’s found that the charitable bingo games have negative impacts on the community, the city retains the right to repeal the ordinance and not issue any new or renewed bingo permits, explained Birnbaum.
Councilwoman Crystal Crawford was hesitant to approve the ordinance as she, along with Councilman Carl Hilliard and Deputy Mayor Donald Mosier, were reticent to allow bingo gaming in residential zones.
Citing potential noise and traffic issues that could arise as a result of the games, Crawford said, “I’m not prepared to support bingo all over Del Mar.”
“This needs to come back with some contemplation about where we want bingo and where we don’t,” Mosier said.
The council directed city staff to come back at a future meeting with a revised ordinance.
Council supports Global Warming Solutions Act
The Del Mar City Council passed a resolution July 26 supporting the Global Warming Solutions Act, a bill that is in danger of being suspended by the state government in November.
The City Council approved the implementation of Assembly Bill 32 (AB 32), the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, which was passed on Sept. 27, 2006, with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.
In supporting AB 32, the Council also voiced its opposition to state Proposition 23, a Nov. 2, 2010, ballot initiative to suspend AB 32.
Those in favor of the council’s decision included Aaron Contorer, chairman of the Equinox Center, a local nonprofit that aims to balance San Diego’s regional growth with the environment’s finite natural resources.
After giving a detailed presentation outlining the negative effects of greenhouse gases, Contorer said, “The cost of inaction is much greater than the cost of action today.”
Peter Zahn, chairman of the Green Chamber of San Diego County, based in Solana Beach, also was on hand to lend support.
“Prop. 23 would gut AB 32,” he said. “The legislation would have a chilling effect.”
Councilman Mark Filanc and Deputy Mayor Donald Mosier voiced their backing of AB 32.
“The science of global warming has been denied for years,” Mosier said. “It’s abundantly clear it’s getting worse. We have to fix these problems. These are critical issues for us and our children and grandchildren.”
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