August 30, 2002

Community Notes:

Port to Seek Additional Community Input on South Embarcadero Enhancement Plans

The Port of San Diego will seek additional community input on enhancement plans for the South Embarcadero area during two days of afternoon and evening public workshops beginning in early September.

The first workshop will be held on Wednesday, September 4, with one session from 3-5 p.m. and a repeat session from 6-8 p.m. At these sessions, Port staff will provide background and updates on issues regarding the planned Central Park and the Old Police Station and gather feedback from members of the public. The second workshop will take place on Thursday, September 26, with one session from 3-5 p.m. and repeated from 6-8 p.m. Port staff will present solutions to issues raised in the first workshop and take comments on all alternative solutions. For added convenience, those interested in attending the workshops will be held at the former Pacific Coral Reef Restaurant (also known as the “Embarcadero Planning Center”) located at 585 Harbor Drive between the Old Police Station and the Chesapeake Fish Company near Seaport Village. Refreshments will be provided.

The South Embarcadero area - which stretches along San Diego Bay from the San Diego Convention Center to Seaport Village - was the subject of an extensive community outreach program that led to a Port Master Plan Amendment approved by the Board of Port Commissioners in 1996 and the California Coastal Commission in 1998. That amendment - commonly known as the South Embarcadero Redevelopment Plan - called for expansion of the Hyatt Hotel and the creation of a new Central Park between Seaport Village and Harbor Drive in an area that includes a portion of the Old Police Station property.

The Hyatt Hotel expansion is currently under way, with anew tower scheduled to open in the summer of 2003. The Coastal Development Permit granted by the Coastal Commission when it approved the South Embarcadero Redevelopment Plan requires the Port to build the Central Park and provide new public parking to compensate for public parking lost due to the development.

Originally, parking was to be increased by placing additional spaces at Embarcadero Marina Park North, which would have required removal of some of the trees and landscaped areas of the park. At its August 6, 2002 meeting, the Board of Port Commissioners voted to cancel the contract for expanding parking elsewhere. In addition - with the help of experts in the field and input from the public - the Port will be developing an Urban Forestry Policy for approval by the Board of Port Commissioners. Once approved, all decisions regarding trees on the Port tidelands would comply with the policy.

No-Cost Early Childhood Program has Openings for Fall

Neighborhood House Association - Head Start/Early Head Start Program has a limited number of openings for the Fall 2002 session. They are currently recruiting low-income families, children with special needs and foster parents with children six weeks to five years old who can benefit from a no-cost comprehensive early childhood program.

What is Head Start?

Head Start is a federally funded program for children and their families. Over the years, the program has touched the lives of tens of thousands of children and their families in San Diego County. Head Start is a family program that provides support services for parents and preschool services for their children. It offers day, evening and some Saturday sessions. Head Start gives low-income children with special-needs and foster children a chance to develop school readiness skills and supports good health by providing educational, social, medical and nutritional services. The focus of the program is on the development of the children with special attention paid to each indiviual’s strengths and needs. The special-needs children receive individual attention and are fully included in regular pre-school programming. After completing the Head Start program, children are excited about learning and prepared for Kindergarten. Head Start promotes parents as the primary educators of their children. Parents are encouraged to become volunteers and to have an active voice in setting the goals and direction of the program.

Head Start offers support for parents on child rearing, education, and creating the opportunity for family self-sufficiency. Parents are encouraged to enhance their education and they are offered employment training and tutoring.

Partnerships and Collaborations

Head Start helps families by providing assistance with other family problems such as lack of housing, job loss, drug or alcohol abuse, etc. Head Start forms partnerships with other organizations and agencies in the County to help meet each family’s needs.

If you have any questions or you would like information about enrolling in the Head Start Program for Fall please call (858)873-5145 today.

YWCA Counseling Center Announces New Services at Open House

Individuals, groups and organizations will be introduced to new services offered by the Pacific Beach Counseling Center at a community open house set for Wednesday, September 18, 2002, 4:00 PM - 8:00 PM, 2550 Garnet Avenue, San Diego, CA 92109. Entertainment for children will be provided and refreshments will be served.

Beginning immediately the YWCA Counseling Center in Pacific Beach will offer services including conflict resolution, anger management classes for adults and teens, parenting classes, couples communication classes, grief support groups for adults and children, group therapy, self esteem and support groups for parents of ADHD children.

“Continuing its long tradition of counseling services, the YWCA is very excited about the new, low cost counseling groups now being offered to the entire community”, says Eda Fushman, LMFT, Clinical Supervisor.

For more information, please contact Antoinette Confer, at 858-270-4504.

County Accepts Proposals for Federal Funds

Residents and organizations are invited to attend one of the informational meetings being held next month to discuss the County’s plans for some $12.8 million in federal community development and housing funds.

The nine meetings are scheduled in unicorporated communities around the County and are sponsored by the County Department of Housing and Community Development. Under discussion will be federal funds expected for the 2003-2004 fiscal year.

The money comes from four programs funded by the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD); Community Development Block Grant (CDBG); HOME Investment Parnerships (HOME); Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG); and, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) Programs.

The largest pot of money, approximately $6 million, comes from the CDBG program, which focuses on improvement and revitalization of low-income communities. eligible projects inclide street upgrades, community centers, parks, water and drainage improvements and housing rehabilitation loans. The other programs fund affordable housing and homeless assistance projects, incliding services for people living with HIV or AIDS.

The deadline to submit proposals for CDBG funding for community development projects is OCT. 31. Staff will be present at the meetings to provide information and answer questions. Procedures for funding housing-related programs will also be outlined at the meeting. Further informationa and applications can be obtained from the County Department of Housing and Community Development, 3989 Ruffin road, San Diego, CA 92123, by calling (858)694-4807, by E-mail: jhersked@co.sandiego.ca.us, or from the County Web site: www.sdhcd.org. The County also administers these funds for some local cities, which will hold their own hearings to discuss how their funds will be spent.

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