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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
June 18, 2010     The Catalina Islander
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June 18, 2010

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Page 8 The CATAUNA ISLANDER * Friday, June 18, 2010 From page 7 they observed a Griffin Catalina Wherry on the stern of a "home built" Trimaran sailboat anchored in the Harbor. Making contact with the owner disclosed that he was a former resident in Two Harbors, worked at the USC Wrigley Marine Science Center, and had acquired the boar from a resident in Two Harbors, Isthmus Cove. Jerry Colmery of Manhattan Beach and a long time Two Harbors visitor has a Griffith Wherry which has been rebuilt. In the 1980's Rick Ruppert, Randy Bombard and Lee Northrop redesigned a modified Catalina Wherry with cutter bow and classic "wine glass stem," storage compartments bow and stem, detailed teak interior trim and gunnels which accentu- ated the pleasing curves of the boat. The new Wherry has a length of 14ft. 6in. with 3ft. 10 beam and a freeboard of 16 in. They were called Island Catalina Wherrys. There were three of the new Island Catalina Wherrys construct- ed. These three are Rudy Piltch's Melba, Jim and Sherry Dittmar's Return and Doug Bombard's Audrey. The Melba and Return have been active boats and are used extensively during the summer at Two Harbors with the two wher- rys, Melba and Return, making four trips around Santa Catalina Island since 1993, as part of the Catalina wherry Classic, Figure 6. Dennis Chote, a Southern California boat builder, later built a 12-foot wherry from the Griffith mold for a Los Angeles Yacht Club Member. Sadly it was learned this summer that the Griffith mold, succumbed to old age, disintegrated and no longer useful for reproduction. Much like the history of some early Catalina Wherry rowing enthusiasts. 3 " "! Tom Gibbons of Seal Beach and longtime Two Harbors boat- er started looking for a Catalina wherry in the summer of 2008. Unable to find one he bought a Gig Harbor Wherry, in Gig Harbor, Washington. Shortly after projects, probably in November. During budget. discussions, staff informed the Council about three issues of concern: Fuel Dock Construction - The Fuel Dock im- provement project is not in the adopted budget. ~ ~t .'the ,present time, with the best information ! " /aq~labl~e it is estimated that the project will cost $3.2 million. The City has grants for $1.1 million and about $1 million in the Harbor Infrastructure Fund. Additional funds for this project could come from ACIA. The City may go out to bid in late July and would then have a better handle on construc- tion costs. At that time the project will be brought ,eZ3ZBl'i OifiL) ~{IJ ~lJi'l~ bu'7~,lq di~ ,.,',,,.,'~ :~, ~Qt~ e~-(~ouQqi!~tp d.i~.~u~%ofinaJAq~gjegted costs and City Council and ACIA adopt budgets ~Or Fiscal ~. options on ho~ to pa~/for che project. year 2010-2011. The City adopted it's annual budget at the June 15, 2010 City Council and ACIA meetings, two weeks before the beginning of the new fiscal year. Among.the highlights of the $18 million City bud- get are: .. NO fee increases are contained in the budget. Avalon visitors and residents wil pay the same fees in the upcoming fisca year as now exist. As approved, the overall budget is in the black. Where proposed expenditures are greater than projected revenue in a given fund, prior year's reserves will cover the shortfall. The staff budget proposed is actually LESS than the staff budget of one year ago by about 5%. This is accomplished due to the early retirement program adopted by the Council in FY 09-10 and the fact that no general raises are pro- oosed for city employees. Normal step increases ana recently approved longevity pay are included where emoloyees are eligible. The 5% figure does not include newly staff hired to work at the fuel dock or the position described below There is one new staff position pro- posed in the budge~: an additional code enforce- ment officer. One of the reasons staff did not pro- pose any fee increases is to devote time this fiscal year ensuring that all existing fees are being paid by responsible parties. The City wants to make sure that the inevitable, future fee increases are implemented after making sure everyone is pay- ing their fair share. The new code enforcement officer will make sure contractors are obtaining required permits, that businesses have licenses, and that multi-unit property owners are paying sewer, salt & solid waste fees for each unit. In addition, this position Will provide greater flexibility to enforce parking restrictions. The only capital improvement projects contained n this Duoget are related to Machaclo Field, being paid for by gran~s. The Council post- poned considering any new projects until later in the fiscal year. After the FY 09-10 books are closed and fund balances are certain, staff will bring for- ward for Council consideration additional capital Child Care Fund - As iff past years the Child Care fund, which pays for CKV, cannot meet its expenses on tuition fees alone. In FY 0%10 the Council transferred $125,000 from the Commu- nity Development Fund to make up the projected deficit. This year's projected deficit is $206,000. The Council' accepted a staff recommendation to fully fund the program through December and that in the meantime staff be directed to return in 90 days with a long term set of alternatives for this program's finances. Transportation Fund - This fund which pays for the Dial-a-Ride Program, taxi subsidy and trolley line is underfunded by about $42,000. Staff has met with Catalina Transportation to work out pro- gram reductions to meet reduced funding which will primarily affect the trolley service. Avalon Community Improvement Agency (ACIA) budget The adopted $9 million FY 2010 - 2011 ACIA budget is much the same as in pnor years, repay- ng bonded indebtedness and providing for ad- ministrative costs to run the agency. Notable additional projects in the new fiscal year include: $250,000 for a Low and Moderate Income Down Payment Assistance Program and $400,000 to fund a Low and Moderate Income Home Rehabili- tation Plan. The clown payment assistance plan is already underway. The details of the rehabilitation program will be publicized in about a month. This program wil provide zero cost loans to qualified homeowners to rehabilitate their home or add systems to lower utility costs using funds allocated by state redevelbpment law for this purpose. The ACIA budget also contains funds to reha- bilitate certain portions of the Waste Water Treat- ment Plant and to obtain a new portable emer- gency generator to power the plant in case of a power outage. Finally, the budget allocates $350,000 to com- plete slip lining in the Whittley / Marilla / Vieude- Iou / Hiawatha collection systems. he found one Griffith and one Northrup Island Catalina Wherry, which he is now restoring. So the Wherry Fleet contin- ues. The authors look forward to seeing Tom and his Wherrys in Isthmus Cove for the July 2010 Catalina Wherry Classic: The Next 100 Years The event of the annual "Catalina Wherry Classic" was Conceived by Jim and Sherry Dittmar as an annual, fun, ocean rowing event around Santa Catalina Island. It's not about try- ing to break any records, but just to enjoy the ~cean rowing cama- raderie and camp-outs on remote Island beaches in these very spe- cial rowing boats. The event is also blessed with the spectacular coastal and aquatic scenery of Santa Catalina Island. The maugural event in 1993 was a~4 aight.5,-day,,52 mite,.aroun~ Catalina island row, starting and ending in Isthmus Cove, attended by Jim and Sherry Dittmar rowing double in "RettLm" and Rudy Piltch rowing single with a rolling seat, in his classic, yellow wherry "Melba." Since 1993, there have been three additional Catalirm cir~um~ rowing events and other,short, L ! 10-20 mile, one-night events with others joining the group in kay- aks. Extending the camaraderie of friendship and oceffn adventure the annual schedule of the Catalina Wherry Classic,(without Wherrys) have been held in the Pacific Islands of Tonga, The Island of Kaui, Hawaii, and Whihiki Island in New Zeland. There is a new generation of wherry rowers and adventurers at Two Harbors. They include Laurie McElroy who is continuing the tradition of recreational rowing and the pride of owning and pre- serving the history of the Catalina Wherry. While researching this article, the authors learned discussions are underway to produce a carbon fiber version of the Wherry based upon the design of the Griffith Wherry. This will likely reduce the over all weight of the Wherry from 250+ It 'appears "that the 'Catalina Wherry may continue it's colorful history for another 100 years. Special thanks for this article goes to the Joe Guiori Family, of Joe's Ren t A Boat on Avalon Pier since !927, for preserving and being the, caretakeo of:the #r~gi, Custom trips to maximize your special I]W,,]illllIIIilil]IIII : -,,:Jill/l t:ii]Lllllt: ll.;11;;i