Joseph Mosca did return to the United States eventually, and resettled in a quaint seaside San Diego County town known as Encinitas. Which, and by the wildest of coincidences I am completely certain, is a place where locally unwanted redevelopment has become a highly contentious issue. Just like Sierra Madre back when he first showed up here.
Also like Sierra Madre, it wasn't too long after his arrival that Joseph became involved in local government. He wasted no time in the effort, applying for and winning an appointment to the Encinitas Parks and Recreation Commission. And while this might seem like a rather modest post when compared to being the Mayor of a city like Sierra Madre, it could provide him with the foot in the door he'll need for that Encinitas City Council run he is probably planning.
After all, while still brand spanking new to that community, he will have served on an actual commission. Something that probably would carry some weight with the more politically naive and poorly informed residents, giving his run for elective office there a level of credibility it otherwise might not have. And who doesn't like parks?
So, seeing how it is December 26 and there isn't much else going on, I thought we should check in with the City of Encinitas and see how things have been going for Joseph so far. Surely there must be some items of interest for us to explore.
Here is how Joseph's appointment was first announced in a local weekly called the Encinitas Advocate (link).
That was September 9. Joe's first meeting as a member of the Encinitas Parks and Recreation Commission took place less than a week later, on September 15. Here are some examples of how Joe participated, as taken from this meeting's minutes (link).
The first time our former Mayor spoke out at this meeting was on this next item. His suggestion seems reminiscent of what he often advocated for during his City of Sierra Madre years.
As I am sure we all remember, things such as Senior of the Year Awards and "volunteer recognition banquets" were pretty much Joe's meat and potatoes when he was here. He worked events like these hard. Certainly they would present opportunities for him to get out there in an official capacity and mix it up with the lokes in Encinitas. Important for someone with his political ambitions.
Here is one of the featured items Parks and Recreation discussed that evening. Again, this is all comparatively modest, far from proposing utility tax and water rate increases like he did here.
This next item is equally placid.
Good to see the work plan passed unanimously. Then there was this item. No news if these are happy trails.
Two hours of heavy lifting later, the whole thing mercifully ground to a halt.
Only one other Encinitas Parks and Recreation meeting has taken place since Joseph Mosca was appointed to that commission. And this time they actually had something important to consider. Again, from the Encinitas Advocate (link).
So how did Commissioner Joseph Mosca use the opportunity to speak out on an issue as important as this one?
The highlight of the evening for this observer was the beginning of a process that will likely result in Joe Mosca being relieved of his SGVCOG duties. The reason being his poor attendance at COG functions as revealed in the meeting minutes published on this organization's website. After hearing from SCAG about the importance of participating in the activities of the regional planning organizations, certainly we need to have a liaison that will actually show up at the meetings. Once staff prepares the necessary documents, the eminently qualified Don Watts will likely serve as our new liaison to the San Gabriel Valley Council Of Governments. The vote to move this process forward was 3 to 2.
Joe Mosca's response to the initiating of the process to knock him from his SGVCOG perch was typical. He admitted that there are many "things I have missed," but went on to claim that he is personally committed to COG. Then he blustered to Mayor MacGillivray that "you don't even know what COG means!" And then, in a statement fraught with pathos, blurted out, "Do you know how embarrassing that would be?"
Memories. Hopefully Joseph will remember some of the problems he ran into back then over his lack of attendance, and he will show up more often at Encinitas meetings than he did while here.
We will continue to follow events in Encinitas and report back on what we find.