The time is very very short. Please keep spreading the word. Thanks!!
On August 13th, I sent an email message to several key people with the following:
I'm writing because the RFP for the Torrey Pines Gliderport has been posted to the City's web site, and it's clear that is has been drafted to make only the current concessionaire eligible. It has also been drafted in such a way as to preclude any other kinds of management structure other than the current concessionaire model.
I feared that the City would try to do this, and as far back as 2013 I voiced my concerns to the City Council (see first video here): http://ushawks.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2573
Here's part of my speech from that video (October 8th, 2013):
"My name is Bob Kuczewski. I am here to talk about the Gliderport RFP, which of course stands for "Request for Proposals".
So why isn't the Torrey Pines City Park Advisory Board advising this City on creation of a Request for Proposals for the Gliderport Lease? Why? Why aren't the citizens and user groups involved in creating and specifying the parameters for this RFP? Why has the Torrey Pines City Park Advisory Board been prohibited from advising on the management of that park? ...
Why are pubic, park, and user groups being kept out of the process?
Here's an example of something that might be left out. On the screen here is an example of a million dollar policy that our club can purchase for the Torrey Pines Gliderport protecting the CIty. This is a liability policy that protects the city from any lawsuits due to activities on that site.
We can buy that million dollar policy and indemnify the City for a million dollars ... at a cost of $250 per year.
Will that option be considered? Will this option be considered unresponsive to the RFP? In other words, will the RFP be written in such a way that it's geared toward the current concessionaire and excludes any of these other possibilities? ...
I'm going to issue a corruption alert to the City of San Diego. ...
If the Gliderport RFP is "wired" in any way for the current concessionaire - and you know what I mean by "wired", it means it's written in such a way that the only person can meet those requirements is the concessionaire - then we will know that there is corruption in this city under your watch.
So I am asking you to ensure that any RFP is written to allow all options to be considered."
- Bob Kuczewski, October 8th, 2013
Yet the RFP that was just issued does not allow for any of the many options that should be considered for that property. Indeed, the RFP requirements have been tailored to fit only the current concessionaire ... all others need not apply.
This is wrong, and it's being rushed through in the last hours of Sherri Lightner's 8 year reign of neglect.
I am asking you to make a public statement asking that the RFP for the Gliderport either be revised to allow a broad range of proposals or that it be tabled until [next year].
On August 16th, I sent an email message to a number of people (City of San Diego, USHPA, etc) with the following:
With regard to the Gliderport RFP, I have 3 concerns:
- The time is too short given that there hasn't been an anticipated date of issue. The lease expired in 2008, and there were people in the sport preparing their participation in advance of that date (mid 2007 and early 2008). But this RFP has come as a surprise to the flying community. The 60 day proposal period is far too short given those circumstances. I would like to see it extended to 120 days as a minimum, and I am asking that you make that request of the Real Estate Assets Department. Thank you.
- The RFP has been drafted in a way that appears as if it's written to select only the current concessionaire. Some of the requirements are such that they can be easily interpreted as excluding anyone who hasn't been operating the Torrey Pines Gliderport in 3 of the last 5 years. Furthermore, the RFP excludes many other kinds of operation - such as the club model that has been successful in 90% (or more) of the flying sites in the United States. In fact, the closest example to Torrey Pines would be Fort Funston which overlooks the ocean in San Francisco. That site is completely managed by the Fellow Feathers club, and they have avoided many of the problems that have plagued the Torrey Pines site for decades. I feel it is inappropriate for the RFP to exclude such proposals. This is especially true since Torrey Pines is the only site of its type in all of southern California. It would be as if all of San Diego's beaches were being turned over to one concessionaire to hold a monopoly. I am not opposed to the RFP giving concession rights to a single concessionaire as long as that does not grant exclusive right to control all flying at that site. With those thoughts in mind, I would like to ask Parks and Recreation to request a broadening of the RFP by Real Estate Assets to allow a wider range of proposals and experience. Thank you.
- The Torrey Pines City Park Advisory Board was formed in 2008, and it consisted of all of the user groups of the site. Yet that Board was inactivated prior to the drafting of this important RFP. I feel it is inappropriate for the City of San Diego to be issuing an RFP that does not include their active participation. I therefore ask that the Torrey Pines City Park Advisory Board be reactivated so they can participate in advising the CIty (they are an Advisory Board, after all) on the drafting of this RFP. Thank you.
Those are my concerns. It strikes me as highly inappropriate that this RFP is being rushed through during the City Council's summer break given the extremely long time that it has been allowed to carry forward in a month to month status (since August of 2008). For all of those reasons, and to ensure that the City is offered the best choice of proposals by the best people in the industry, I respectfully ask the San Diego Parks and Recreation Department to request the three items I have mentioned above.