City Administrators Weekly Report

July 15th, 2008

BUILDING & SAFETY DEPARTMENT

Building & Safety New and Improved Web Site

The Department of Building & Safety is now providing more services online in order to save you time, energy, and money.  By providing more services online, you will make fewer trips to City Hall, therefore reducing fuel consumption.  On the new Building & Safety website, users can find general information, information on inspection services, plan review services, and a user-friendly permit center.  The new Permit Center allows users to now get all the forms they need via the web.  These forms include application and supplemental forms, information bulletins, Certificates of Occupancy, and plan review correction lists with requirements and waivers.  Here you can also find city standard plans regarding such issues as patio covers and wood fences.  You can even calculate your fees right there with the added “Fee Calculator” function.  After you have found all your application forms, the new site features the convenient function of applying and paying for permits by fax.  To help answer any questions or concerns, the Permit Center offers two important guides.  First, the Permit Guide provides general information regarding the permit issuance process in a simplified question and answer format.  Second, a Home Builder Guide has been prepared to assist homeowners or contractors who are unfamiliar with Building and Municipal Code sections in planning residential construction, alteration, or repair work.  This guide is intended to assist in planning, obtaining the necessary permits and inspections, and successfully completing work.  Please visit the site at www.surfcity-hb.org/government/departments/Building_Safety

COMMUNITY SERVICES DEPARTMENT

The Huntington Beach Surf Theatre Film Festival

The Huntington Beach Art Center (HBAC) will be hosting the 6th Annual Huntington Beach Surf Theatre Film Festival from July 25 - 27.  The festival is devoted to showcasing a wide range of surf films to the public.  The July 25 Opening Night Special Fundraising Screening, benefiting the Long Beach Prosthetics Lab, will feature Between the Lines by Ty Ponder, Scott Bass, and Troy Page -- narrated by John Milius.  Tickets for this fundraising event will be $15, and the screening will begin at 8 p.m.  The screening schedule for the 26th is as follows:  Globe - New Emissions of Light and Sound, 7:30 p.m.; Out There by Teton Gravity Research, 8:45 p.m.; and Under the Sun - Cyrus Sutton, 10:00 p.m.  The schedule for July 27 is as follows: O'Neill's - The Life, 7:30 p.m.; Skills 2 Pay the Bills - Jessie Marley, 9:00 p.m.; and the Awards Ceremony at 10:00 p.m.  Admission for all of the July 26 and 27 screenings is free.  All showings will be held under the stars in the HBAC parking lot.  Please call 374-1650 for more information.  The HBAC is located at 538 Main Street in Huntington Beach.

Bernie Pearl Shines at HBAC

The Huntington Beach Art Center (HBAC) presents the raw and compelling sounds of Bernie Pearl and his band on July 18, 7:30 – 10:00 p.m., as part of the HBAC’s Friday Night Blues series.  In solo and band accompanied performances, Pearl will play selections from his recently released double-disc CD, Old School Blues, featuring acoustic and electric songs.  The Art Center, along with our celebrated partners, invests annually in bringing the contemporary and energetic sounds of blues and jazz to the community.  Together, these genres make up the Art Center’s annual music series Live at the Center.In previous years, Live at the Center has enjoyed corporate sponsorship and is currently seeking new partners to continue this tradition.  General admission tickets for Bernie Pearl at the Huntington Beach Art Center on July 18 are $25, HBAC members $20, and prepaid reservations are required for guaranteed seating.  Please call 374-1650 for reservations and ticket information.  A sample of Bernie Pearl’s music can be heard at www.BerniePearl.com.

Make Artsy Summer Sunday Part of Your Day

Come join the Huntington Beach Art Center for another Artsy Summer Sunday on July 20, from 1 – 3 p.m.  Sponsored by Target, Artsy Summer Sundays is a series of free, drop-in art workshops for children and their parents.  Guest artists teach hands-on art to families in a comfortable setting at the Art Center.  No registration is required.  Call 374-1650 for more information, or see the Sands Community Services Guide at http://www.huntingtonbeachca.gov.

Ground Us Continues through August

Ground Us is an exhibition featuring installations by three artists: Kiel Johnson, Lucrecia Troncoso, and P. Williams.  Collectively, the artists explore and investigate the sprawling environment and the constant development of concrete encroaching on our natural space.  The use of everyday materials such as cardboard, wood, paper, and sponges are used in the creation of the artists’ ideal utopias.  Three large scale, site-specific installations amuse, engage, and imagine a new and improved world.  The exhibition now features video documentation of the destructive finishing touch provided by artist P. Williams on the night of the opening reception.  The exhibition continues through August 31 and can be viewed during open gallery hours: Wednesday – Saturday 12 – 6 p.m.; and Sunday 12 - 4 p.m.  For more information, please call the Art Center at 374-1650.

Family Camp Out

The city of Huntington Beach offered its third overnight camping event at Central Park on July 12 and 13, and 200 people participated in the event.  Campers were invited to attend organized activities, drop-in activities, or just kick back and enjoy the beautiful area.  The activities offered included:  REI program, nature crafts, nature hike with visit to Shipley Nature Center, games, and a visit to Adventure Playground.  Mary Pat Gonzalez entertained everyone with stories and songs.  Inside the Outdoors brought snakes and other reptiles to educate the group and to answer questions.  Participants are looking forward to next year’s event!

Senior Softball at the Central Park Sports Complex

This past weekend saw a mix of clouds, sunshine, and warm weather as the city hosted its 20th Annual Senior Softball Tournament.  The tournament continued to have inter-state appeal as teams from Las Vegas and Arizona joined teams from Simi Valley, La Mesa, and of course Huntington Beach for relaxing and a fun time in the city.  There were 26 teams competing in 6 divisions for the claim to the best of the Southland in their competition level.  The Senior tournament was held at the Central Park Sports Complex.  All participants in the tournament received the very popular special edition commemorative shirt, celebrating the anniversary of this event.  So Cal 55, based out of Los Angeles, topped the R & R Stokers team from Simi Valley for their first tournament championship; The Thirsty Bunch team from Huntington Beach outlasted the Centerfield team for their second championship in three years; The Old Fatcola team came out on top in Division III; while the Huntington Beach Rebels outlasted the pack to secure their second consecutive and third championship in four years.  The So Calif. Patriots from San Clemente defended their title in Division V, while the Optimists came out ahead in Division IV.  Many of the participants in this year’s event commented on how much they enjoy the tournament and are already looking forward to next year’s tournament.

Huntington Beach Senior Services

The DreamCatchers, an auxiliary of the Assistance League of Huntington Beach, increased their annual donation to the Senior Services Care Management program to $10,000.  Since 2001, the DreamCatchers have focused one of their outreach programs on the senior citizens of Huntington Beach.  Through the Seniors’ Outreach center, they provide gift certificates to local stores.  These gift certificates are given by city social workers to very low-income seniors to purchase groceries, personal items, & medication.  The increased donation amount allows the grocery gift cards to be purchased in $50 increments, an important aspect with raising food costs.  The increased donation has also expanded the program to include Orange County Transportation Authority Access fare coupon booklets.  The DreamCatchers Auxiliary originated in 1993 with a group of working women who had an interest in helping meet the needs of the local community but had limited time to donate.  Through their fundraising efforts, the DreamCatchers fund many philanthropic projects that assist both children and adults.

Marine Safety

When John Elser entered the Police Academy, Tony Villalobos was selected to replace him as the city’s newest Marine Safety Officer (MSO) on June 14.  Tony came from San Clemente where he was a permanent MSO.  He also has worked in Huntington Beach as a recurrent lifeguard.  Welcome aboard, Tony!

On July 8, Dave Simcox was the sole recipient of the 2008 Project Wipeout Excellence in Lifeguarding Award, recognizing a permanent or recurrent lifeguard for outstanding public service, exemplary professional demeanor, achievements, and commitment to the lifeguarding profession. Dave began his city employment as an Ocean Lifeguard in 1964 and is currently serving as our Junior Lifeguard Coordinator for the 33rd year.  Congratulations, Dave!

PLANNING DEPARMENT

Draft Environmental Impact Report for The Village at Bella Terra Available

The 45-day Public Review and Comment Period for the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for The Village at Bella Terra opens on July 11 and will close on August 25.  A public comment meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 30, at 6 p.m., in Rooms C/D of the Huntington Beach Central Library, 7111 Talbert Avenue.  The Village at Bella Terra project is located at 7777 Edinger Avenue (the former Montgomery Wards) in the northern part of the city.  It is immediately adjacent to Bella Terra, an approximately 777,000 square foot shopping center.  Bella Terra is owned by DJM, an affiliate of the applicant BTDJM Phase II Associates, LLC.  The applicant is proposing a General Plan Amendment and Zoning Text Amendment to increase maximum development density, increase the maximum number of stories, establish mixed-use zoning, create mixed-use development standards, and amend commercial development standards in specific plan No.13.  Copies of the DEIR are available at City Hall, Central Library, and on the Planning Department website at http://www.huntingtonbeachca.gov/government/departments/planning/major/BTVillage.cfm.

Neighborhood Workshop on July 23

The Departments of Economic Development and Planning will hold a neighborhood workshop on Wednesday, July 23, from 7 - 8 p.m., at the Ted Fisher Head Start School located at 14422 Hammon Lane.  Topics include addressing unkempt properties and substandard housing, abandoned or inoperable vehicles, Green Building practices, and neighborhood networking and ways to get involved.  For additional information, contact Bill Zylla, Neighborhood Preservation Program Manager, at 536-5274.

POLICE DEPARTMENT

Aero Bureau Rescue

On July 11 at approximately 11:45 a.m., 911 Dispatch for the city of Huntington Beach received a call of a one-year-old child not breathing and turning blue.  The caller, who was the mother of the child, was hysterical and having difficulty understanding the first aid techniques the dispatcher was giving her.  To complicate matters further, the area where the child lived was having significant road construction which was going to hamper response times by both the Fire and Police Departments.  The Police helicopter was in the area, and the flight crew recognized the critical need for immediate first aid.  The helicopter, being flown by pilot Rick McNaughton along with Observer/Partner R.J. Garwood, landed the helicopter on the street near the location of the medial aid.  After landing, Officer Garwood immediately went into the house and was able to dislodge the obstruction which was causing the child to choke.  Once on scene, the Fire Department transported the child to Huntington Beach Hospital, where the child is doing fine.  Per the on-scene Fire Department personnel, the actions by the Helicopter crew not only saved the life of the child, but more than likely prevented brain damage due to oxygen deprivation.

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