Citizen initiative filed, should be adopted by Solana Beach City Council

The following is an open letter addressed to the Solana Beach City Council and to Solana Beach residents:

Friends of Fletcher Cove Community Center filed their Initiative with the Solana Beach city clerk on Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2013 at 4 p.m. We submitted the petitions with over 2,000 signatures. Seventy percent of all these signatures were collected by volunteers. All areas of Solana Beach are represented by signers.

Our reasons for this action are very clear. Since the grand opening of the Fletcher Cove Community Center in July of 2011, the City Council abdicated its responsibility to develop policies to govern weekend use of the Community Center for private events and celebrations.

At the council meeting on July 10, 2013, we shared with you our intent to circulate petitions for the purpose of regulating the use of the Community Center.

The initiative is simple. It sets forth the use of the Community Center in accordance with already established city ordinances. We ask for no special treatment, no special conditions and no special rules.

Starting the first week of August, probably the most difficult month to catch residents at home, we collected about 1,000 signatures from registered voters all across the City.

We shared this information with you at the special meeting on Aug. 7, 2013. At that meeting, we respectfully asked for you to adopt the initiative.

However, you quickly put together a set of special, overly restrictive rules to govern the use of Fletcher Cove Community Center during a trial period ending after the next City Council election in December 2014.

These rules were designed to discourage the use of the Community Center.

Following that special meeting on Aug. 7, with the local newspapers publishing the trial policies and opponents of the initiative pleading their case with letters to the editor, our volunteers went back into our neighborhoods.

We have gathered another 1,000 signatures. We learned from the citizens we talked with that they were not happy with your proposed trial period and restricted regulations.

In fact, they cannot believe that the City Council has put so much energy and effort to try to stop the residents of Solana Beach from using the only coastal venue in our city for family celebrations.

We have many more signatures than we need. To collect more would serve no purpose. We ask that you seriously consider the message from more than 2,000 voters who stand together on this issue. We respectfully ask you to adopt the initiative.

We do not want a special election. We have never wanted a special election. We simply want to use Fletcher Cover Community Center as a Community Center and the way it was designed to be used.

It would be most unfortunate to spend over $200,000 on an election to try to restrict our citizens from the use of this beautiful, oceanfront Community Center.

We ask you once again to adopt this citizen initiative.

Mary Jane Boyd

on behalf of the Friends of Fletcher Cove Community Center.