Officially established on April 25, 1946, Pismo Beach—the “Clam Capital of the World”—is an exemplary California beach town, boasting classic charm and an iconic pier, as well as miles of scenic shoreline and a robust schedule of community programming.
“Pismo Beach is a small but mighty city that prides itself on its world-class amenities, economic strength, regional partnerships, ‘Classic California’ character, and five-times-accredited Police Department, all of which contribute to the quality of life for its residents, businesses, and visitors,” said Assistant City Manager Jorge Garcia. “The City of Pismo Beach remains committed to providing a vibrant, safe community.”
Pismo Beach’s year of celebration featured a series of signature events, beginning with a drive-through hosted by the mayor and city council at City Hall on April 23. A “75 Years of Pismo” photo contest invited community members to share pictorial memories, while the city’s annual July 4 celebration and classic car show provided accessible entertainment for families. The 75th Anniversary Gala, held at Pismo Beach Plaza on October 15, served as a springboard to the community’s Clam Festival, October 16–17. The special event included a gourmet dinner, show, historical presentation, fireworks display, and dancing. The Clam Festival featured a chowder cookoff, parade, and live entertainment.
Pismo Beach Councilmember Mary Ann Reiss, currently serving as vice president of the California JPIA’s Executive Committee, which she joined in 2009, ensures that risk management is a council priority. The Authority first celebrated the city’s culture of risk awareness and mitigation with a 2019 Risk Management Award for Best Overall Performance for its primary workers’ compensation program in the category of municipal agencies with public safety exposure. The recognition was repeated in 2021.
“The California JPIA is proud to partner with the City of Pismo Beach,” said Senior Risk Manager Tim Karcz. “It is clear that they understand the importance of risk management and how it relates to the great services they provide to the community.”
Significant accomplishments have marked the city’s anniversary year. In addition to the Authority’s Risk Management Award, Pismo Beach has received seven other awards for excellence in government management, project development, and capital improvement projects: the League of California Cities’ Helen Putnam Award for Excellence in Intergovernmental Collaboration for Central Coast Blue, a regional recycled water project in San Luis Obispo County; Government Finance Officers Association’s Excellence in Financial Reporting Award for its comprehensive annual financial report and achievement of highest standards in government accounting and financial reporting; California Association of Environmental Professionals’ Merit Award for Environmental Analysis Document for the Central Coast Blue Environmental Impact Report; California Chapter of the American Planning Association Excellence in Urban Design Award for the Pismo Pier Plaza Revitalization; American Public Works Association Project of the Year, Structures $5-15 Million for the Pier Plaza; American Society of Civil Engineers San Luis Obispo Chapter: Roadway and Highways Project of the Year AND Outstanding Bikeways and Trails Project of the Year for the Shell Beach Streetscape; and American Society of Civil Engineers Los Angeles Section Outstanding Bikeways and Trails Project of the Year for the Shell Beach Streetscape.
“We are proud of the excellent work that our staff has put into receiving these awards on behalf of the community,” said Mayor Ed Waage. “The awards serve as a symbol to the residents, businesses, and visitors of Pismo Beach that this city council prioritizes excellence in governance and project delivery.”
Providing innovative risk management solutions for its public agency partners for more than 40 years, the California Joint Powers Insurance Authority (California JPIA) is one of the largest municipal self-insurance pools in the state, with more than 120 member cities and other governmental agencies. Members actively participate in shaping the organization to provide important coverage for their operations. The California JPIA provides innovative risk management solutions through a comprehensive portfolio of programs and services, including liability, workers’ compensation, pollution, property, and earthquake coverage, as well as extensive training and loss control services. For more information, please visit the California JPIA’s website at cjpia.org.