City’s key accomplishments for calendar year 2016

Prepared by City Manager John Pietig

Public Safety

Measure LL – Nearly 80% of Laguna Beach residents voted to approve Measure LL, which increased the Transient Occupancy Tax rate paid by tourists who stay in hotels and other lodging establishments from 10% to 12%. As a result, residents will see improved service enhancements to public safety such as: 

Two additional Beach Patrol Officers allowing for an additional 80 hours a week of beach patrol assigned primarily to South Laguna;

One additional Community Outreach Officer for an additional 40 hours a week of working with homeless and mentally ill populations;

Upgrade a fire engine to paramedic status at Station Two to provide paramedic coverage at all four fire stations;

Adding a Civilian Fire Marshal to enhance fire prevention programs and improve turnaround time for plan checks and inspections;

Hiring two additional Marine Safety Officers for an additional 200 days of lifeguard tower coverage; and

Setting aside $1 million annually for utility undergrounding to help prevent fires and power outages.

Nixle – The Police Department launched Nixle, which is a text, email, and phone message system that notifies the community with information related to traffic congestion, community events, and emergency information. 

Fuel Modification Project Completed – The Fire Department completed the Nyes/Oro Canyon Fuel Modification Project in Arch Beach Heights that will help protect structures if there is a future fire.

New Paramedic Unit – Located in the Top of the World neighborhood, Station Three upgraded one fire engine to include a Paramedic Assessment Unit to further improve emergency response time and services.

Surveillance Camera Expansion – A total of 40 cameras now cover a majority of the City, which assists public safety officials with identifying traffic flow and congestion, crime, and nuisance issues.

Coffee with a Cop program –This program gives the community an opportunity to interact with police officers in a less formalized environment where they are free to ask questions while letting officers know about things going on in their neighborhoods.

Citizen’s Police Academy – The Citizen’s Police Academy graduated its 22nd and 23rd classes this year bringing the total number of graduates to more than 400 people since the program’s inception.

Public Service Announcements – The City’s Public Safety departments created thirteen Public Service Announcements to assist and inform residents on various topics such as crime prevention, smoke alarm placement and testing, and ocean safety. 

Facilities and Capital Improvements

 

Loma Terrace Sewer Relocation Project – The City completed construction to replace and relocate a 55-year-old, 18-inch sewer pipeline that transmitted 730,000 gallons of wastewater per day in the downtown area starting at the Lumberyard Parking Lot and finishing at Park Avenue at Bent Street.

Measure LL – Funding from Measure LL will also be used to improve the cleanliness of public areas such as 80 hours per week of additional Downtown sidewalk steam cleaning; more frequent steam cleaning of Coast Highway sidewalks; daily cleaning of Downtown and Coast Highway (litter removal, trash can cleaning, sidewalk sweeping, etc.); and 42 hours per week of cleaning Main Beach and Heisler Park restrooms during peak months. 

$500,000 California River Parkways Grant – The City received a grant for the DeWitt Property Habitat Restoration Project from the California Natural Resources Agency for removal of invasive species, creek area repair, and planting of native plant and tree species.

Anita Street/Seaview Street Storm Drain Improvements – The City is expected to complete storm drain improvements along Anita Street, Avalon Avenue, and Seaview Street between Temple Terrace and Gaviota Drive in January 2017.

Improvements to Playhouse and Museum – The City Council awarded $500,000 to leverage private investment to improve these cultural facilities.  

Improvement of City Facilities and Local InfrastructureThe City completed several projects to improve City facilities and local infrastructure:

Repaired and resealed 70 streets in the upper Bluebird Canyon, flatlands, Alta Vista Way and lettered streets, Nyes Place, and Victoria Beach areas

Completed pole and overhead wire removal for a utility undergrounding assessment district on Ruby Street and Catalina Street

Constructed a sidewalk along Anita Street between South Coast Highway and Gaviota Drive

Resurfaced tennis and basketball courts at Alta Laguna Park; renovated restrooms at Boat Canyon Park and Alta Laguna Park; and installed new fitness equipment at Nita Carman Park

Began construction of the Top of the World Trail project

Assisted in the formation of an assessment district to replace a failing bridge on Milligan Drive.

Installed two new electric vehicle charging stations in the Glenneyre Parking Structure and replaced two charging stations at the Forest/Laguna Lot #11

Improved stairway lighting along the Third Street hill

Completed rehabilitation of Bus Depot restroom

Replaced old and damaged guard railing at over a dozen locations citywide

Reconstructed and extended a storm drain between Wendt Terrace and Bolsa Way 

Community Development

Short-Term Lodging – An amendment to the City’s municipal code was added to prohibit short-term lodging in residential zones, apply additional standard conditions and requirements for those zones where it is still allowed, and grandfather existing short-term lodging permits.

Customer Service Improvements – The Community Development Department conducted eight community workshops and implemented an electronic sign-in system at the front counter.

Update of Downtown Specific Plan and Preparation of the Laguna Canyon Planning Study – The Planning Commission has started the final review of these documents in order to present its recommendations to the City Council.

Historic Preservation – The Heritage Committee has provided its recommendations to the City Council to update the City’s Historic Preservation Ordinance and the Historic Inventory. The Design Review Board and Planning Commission will be reviewing the recommended updates in early 2017 before ultimately going to the City Council for consideration later in the year.

Wayfinding Signage – City Council initiated the planning/design work for a citywide program. 

Transit

Neighborhood Trolley Pilot Program – The program reconfigured the traditional Mainline Bus routes into three neighborhood trolley routes (Top of the World, Bluebird Canyon, and Arch Beach Heights) and offered expanded service hours on Friday and Saturday, and service on Sunday, which was not previously available. The program operated from June 24 – October 30, 2016 and carried over 40,000 passengers.

Summer Breeze Bus Service – The City, in partnership with the Orange County Transportation Authority, offered a new free business service from a peripheral parking lot near SR-133/I-405 interchange in Irvine to Laguna Beach summer destinations. More than 5,200 boardings were recorded over the eight weekends of operation.  

One Million Riders – The City of Laguna Beach Transit Division is proud to announce that for the first time in its history, the transit system carried over 1 million riders last fiscal year. 

Summer Festival Trolley Service – The City’s free trolley service accommodated 590,427 boardings. 

Off-Season Weekend Trolley Service – The City’s popular free trolley service was extended to off-season weekends to include Friday through Sunday operations again this year and has generated high ridership levels.

Miscellaneous

Village Entrance Project – The City narrowed options to improve the entrance to the community and will provide direction at a special joint meeting with the Planning Commission on February 1, 2017.  

Adoption of the 2016-2018 Economic Development Action Plan – The City, in partnership with the Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce and Visit Laguna Beach, adopted a two-year plan. 

Leadership Laguna – The Laguna Beach Community Foundation and the City hosted its first five-week citizen awareness program called “Leadership Laguna” for residents to learn about city operations and how to participate in civic affairs.

Community Workshops – The City hosted numerous community workshops including Traffic Congestion Town Hall, Disaster Preparedness, South Laguna Civic Association, and Emergency Access Improvement Program.

Laguna’s Excellent Ocean Water Quality – The County of Orange has rated the City’s ocean water quality at 98.9% based on compliance with AB411 standards. 

2016 Summer Olympics – The City hosted a send-off party and welcome home celebration for two Laguna Beach locals, Aria and Makenzie Fischer, who both won gold medals in women’s water polo.

Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting – The City received an award for its easily readable and efficiently organized comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR).

Balanced Budget – The City Council adopted a balanced budget for Fiscal Year 2016-17 while maintaining a 20% General Fund Reserve.

Open Space – The City Council approved the purchase of four vacant parcels totaling 16 acres to be used for permanent open space in Laguna Canyon, Arch Beach Heights, and South Laguna.

DeWitt Property – Completed a lease agreement with the Laguna Canyon Foundation (LCF) for City-owned property in Laguna Canyon to renovate the onsite structure, which will eventually house its headquarters. Public amenities will be added to the property that will allow residents to enjoy the adjacent wilderness areas.  

Social Media – The City continued to expand its social media presence by launching its Instagram account that tells the story of the often-unseen work that keeps the City running. 

Cultural Arts Activity – The City and Arts Commission participated in several activities to bring art into the community, including: (a) adopting the Cultural Arts Plan and facilitating an Arts and Economic Prosperity study; (b) establishing a part-time Arts Coordinator position; (c) presenting 17 free concerts, screening three films, adding World Music Series, and restoring 14 public art pieces; (d) installing “The Love that Blinds” bench at Crescent Bay Point Park and an artist-designed bike rack along Laguna Canyon Road near the Sawdust Art Festival; (e) presenting Arts Marketing workshops for arts organizations and artists; and, (f) awarding 14 arts organizations a total of $204,000 in Cultural Arts Funding grants.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: January 12, 2017

Downtown Specific Plan Update – Review Draft Amendments (Section II) - The City of Laguna Beach and consultant MIG will continue their efforts on the Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) Update on Wednesday, January 18, 2017, during the Planning Commission’s regularly scheduled meeting at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall (505 Forest Avenue).  The focus of the presentation and discussion will be on MIG’s recommended draft amendments to Section II (Profile of Downtown Characteristics) of the existing DSP document.  A copy of the Section II draft amendments are available to view on the project webpage (see link below).  The staff report will available to view on the City’s website the Friday (January 13) before the scheduled Planning Commission meeting.  If you have questions, or for more information, please contact: Wendy Jung, Senior Planner, at (949) 497-0321; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; or visit: 

http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/cd/planning/mjrplanginitv/downtown_specific_plan_amendment/default.htm.  

Milligan Drive Bridge Replacement - The bridge on Milligan Drive that crosses Laguna Canyon Channel has been replaced. The project was funded by an assessment district that included affected property owners and the City. Members of the public are invited to attend a ribbon cutting ceremony at the site planned for January 17 at 4:00 p.m. 

Police Department Hiring Lateral Officers - The Police Department is filling their vacant positions, as well as the positions created by the strategic plan and the Measure LL. In the past week, job offers were given to three lateral officers who currently work for Barstow P.D., Santa Ana P.D., and London, England. Additionally, job offers were given to two part-time jailers and three full-time Beach Patrol Officers.

New Personnel Services/Risk Manager - I am pleased to announce that Tiffany Bates has been hired as the Personnel Services/Risk Manager for the City of Laguna Beach. Tiffany holds two Master’s Degrees in Management and in Business Administration. Prior to joining the City, she served as a Human Resources Manager in the counties of Riverside and Orange. She also has experience working in the private sector. Tiffany has an extensive background in Human Resources strategic planning, personnel management and policy development.  

“Draft” Historic Preservation Ordinance - Since September of 2015, the City of Laguna Beach has been in the process of updating its Historic Preservation Ordinance as it relates to the City’s Historic Preservation Program.  On September 28, 2016, the Heritage Committee finalized its recommendations to the City Council regarding the “Draft” Historic Preservation Ordinance (Municipal Code Section 25.45).  On Thursday, January 26, 2017, at 5:00 p.m., in the City Council Chambers (505 Forest Avenue), staff will receive comments from the Design Review Board regarding the “Draft”.  The Design Review Board will prepare a memorandum to the City Council that will include their comments and direction. The Planning Commission will also review the “Draft” prior to City Council review.  

Recreation Committee Student Advisors - The Recreation Committee is accepting applications to appoint two Laguna Beach High School students to serve as a non-voting advisors on the Committee. The students should have an interest in city government, recreation, and the community. Applications are due to the Community Services Department by Monday, February 6. Information can be found by visiting:

http://lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/council/committees/recreationcomm.htm.

Permanent Art Collection - On Monday, January 16, 2017, artist Tom Lamb will be photographing a number of paintings at City Hall. The photographs of the paintings will become part of the Historic American Landscape Survey (HALS) a program of the National Parks Service in cooperation with the Library of Congress. HALS is a program that documents historical landmarks and Mr. Lamb’s application “Laguna Beach and Greenbelt: Celebrating a Treasured Historic American Landscape” was selected for inclusion. Other documented paintings will include those in the permanent collections of the Festival of Arts and Laguna Art Museum.

Laguna Beach Poet Laureate - The Arts Commission is currently accepting applications for the position of Poet Laureate. The selected poet will be appointed to a yearlong position starting May 1, 2017, with an honorarium of $10,000. Responsibilities will include conducting workshops, coordinate a celebration of National Poetry month, social media and the creation of commemorative poems. This opportunity is open to residents of Laguna Beach. Application information is available at www.lagunabeachcity.slideroom.com.

Forest Avenue Banner Program - Laguna Beach non-profit organizations interested in participating in the 2018 Forest Avenue Banner Program are encouraged to submit their email address to Patty Slowsky at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. in the Community Services Department as soon as possible. Detailed banner information will then be emailed out to all participating non-profits the first week in February. 

Dog Park Closed due to Weather - The Laguna Beach Dog Park is currently closed and is expected to remain closed through Monday, January 16 due to the weather and wet conditions. The Dog Park will be evaluated on a daily basis in order to open the park as soon as possible. Please check the City’s website or the City’s Facebook and Twitter feeds for the most current information. Thank you for your patience.

City Hall Closed on Monday, January 16 - City Hall will be closed on Monday, January 16 in observance for Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. Essential services such as police, fire, lifeguards, bus service and other functions are still provided.  

Holiday Street Sweeping Schedule - On Monday, January 16, only non-residential areas will be swept.  Residential street sweeping will not occur and parking restrictions will not be enforced.

Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Holiday Transit Service Schedule - Laguna Beach Transit will be offering Off-Season Coastal Trolley service on the MLK Holiday, Monday, January 16 from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.  Also, the Residential Trolley services (Top of the World, Bluebird Canyon, Arch Beach Heights, North/Canyon and South/Ritz) will be operating on a modified schedule on MLK Day from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. For additional information please contact the Transit Department at (949) 497-0766. 

Laguna Canyon Road Utility Undergrounding - On January 23, 2017, utility undergrounding efforts in the “Big Bend” area of Laguna Canyon Road will continue with Frontier Communications beginning their portion of the work that includes placing underground cables and equipment, connecting properties, and removing the overhead distribution system. The construction work will require the outbound lane to be moved to the center lane periodically between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. for two weeks. One lane in each direction is expected to be maintained. The work is scheduled to continue through April 2017.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: January 5, 2017

South Coast Highway Bottleneck Project - The South Coast Water District (SCWD) is currently waiting for CALTRANS approval of project construction permits. Expecting the permits to soon be secured, SCWD estimates exploratory utility pothole work to begin on January 16 through January 31. The pipeline construction stretches along the highway between Aliso Creek south to about 10th Avenue.  It will begin by March 2017.  Updates will be forthcoming as progress advances.

Downtown Specific Plan Update – Review Draft Amendments (Section II) - The City of Laguna Beach and consultant MIG will continue their efforts on the Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) Update on Wednesday, January 18, 2017, during the Planning Commission’s regularly scheduled meeting at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall (505 Forest Avenue).  The focus of the presentation and discussion will be on MIG’s recommended draft amendments to Section II (Profile of Downtown Characteristics) of the existing DSP document. A copy of the Section II draft amendments are available to view on the project webpage (see link below). Public correspondence received by the end of day on Monday, January 9, 2017, will be incorporated into the staff report for review by the Planning Commission. Comments may be sent to Wendy Jung, Senior Planner at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . The staff report will available to view on the City’s website the Friday (January 13) before the scheduled Planning Commission meeting.  If you have questions, or for more information, please contact: Wendy Jung, Senior Planner, at (949) 497-0321; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; or visit: http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/cd/planning/mjrplanginitv/downtown_specific_plan_amendment/default.htm

Cultural Arts Funding - The City of Laguna Beach is currently accepting grant applications from non-profit organizations for cultural programming based in Laguna Beach. The deadline to submit an application is February 6, 2017. Applications must be submitted on-line at www.lagunabeachcity.slideroom.com.

First Friday Flicks at [seven-degrees] - First Friday Flicks will start on Friday, January 6, 2017, at its new location at [seven-degrees], 891 Laguna Canyon Road.  We will be offering food for purchase and a cash bar starting at 6 p.m. The film starts at 7 p.m. followed by a post-film panel discussion. The first film will be, “Banksy Does New York” about the elusive street artist who launched a self-proclaimed month long residency in New York installing one unique exhibit a day.  This film is not rated with a running time 79 minutes. This program has been funded through the generosity of Laguna Beach residents Steve Chadima and Mark Porterfield.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: December 29, 2016

City Hall Closed - City Hall will be closed Monday, January 2 in observance of the New Year’s holiday.

Trash Collection and Tree Recycling - There will be no delays for residential and commercial trash collection during the holiday. Waste Management will collect and recycle holiday trees on the regular collection days at no charge through Friday, January 13, 2017. Trees must be cut to lengths less than four feet. Decorations, tinsel, metal ornaments, and metal stands must be removed from the trees.  Please visit the city’s website www.lagunabeachcity.net/recycling for more information.

Holiday Transit Service Schedule - Laguna Beach Transit will be offering extended Off-Season Weekend Coastal Trolley operating hours on New Year’s Eve until 1:00 a.m.  No transit services will be available on New Year’s Day, January 1.  Transit Services will operate on a modified schedule on Monday, January 2, operating from 9:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.  For additional information please contact the Transit Department at (949) 497-0766. 

Holiday Street Sweeping Schedule - On Monday, January 2, only non-residential areas will be swept.  Residential street sweeping will not occur and parking restrictions will not be enforced.

Community and Susi Q Center Closed - The Community & Susi Q Center is currently closed through Sunday, January 8 for annual building maintenance.

Community Services Department Fitness Classes - Are you looking for a convenient way to stick to your new year’s resolutions for 2017? The Community Services department offers a host of fitness classes, ranging from yoga to Zumba, or Jazzercise to spinning, and indoor and outdoor boot camps. Sign up for adult fitness classes today: https://secure.rec1.com/CA/city-of-laguna-beach/catalog.

Reminders:

Cress Street Sidewalk Improvements- On January 11, 2017, at 4:00 p.m., a neighborhood workshop will be held at the Cress Street entrance of Bluebird Park to provide information, answer questions, and obtain public input regarding proposed sidewalk improvements along the south side of Cress Street between Bluebird Park and Temple Terrace. Concept plans are available on the City’s website, at the Public Works home page, under “City Projects” and “Construction Projects List.” If you have questions or are unable to attend the meeting and would like to provide comments, please contact Alpha Santos at (949) 497-0729 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Oak Street and Mountain Road Beach Access Improvement Projects - Construction began this week to start the beach accesses improvement projects at Oak Street and Mountain Road.  The stairways are closed and signs have been posted to direct beachgoers to adjacent beach access locations. The project is scheduled to be completed in May 2017. For more information, please contact Tom Sandefur at (949) 497-0792.


Ready, set, apply for Council appointed committees

The City Council is accepting applications for the following Committees, Commissions and Boards: Recreation Committee, Design Review Board, Parking, Traffic and Circulation Committee, Heritage Committee, Environmental Sustainability Committee, View Restoration Committee and the Measure LL Oversight Committee.

Interviews and appointments will be conducted on Tuesday, Jan 31, at 6 p.m., by the City Council in the City Council Chambers, 505 Forest Avenue, Laguna Beach, California. All applicants will be interviewed. Applicants may be contacted by City Council members prior to the interviews and appointments so please be prepared to make a brief statement about your desire to serve on a committee.

Laguna Beach residents who are interested in serving on one of these committees should obtain an application from the City Clerk’s office or on-line from the City’s website, www.lagunabeachcity.net and file in the City Clerk’s office no later than Friday, Jan 13, at 4 p.m. Questions may be directed to the City Clerk’s office at 497-0705. Applications will not be accepted after the deadline.

Number of positions that will be open and details for the following Committees, Commissions and Boards: (*The City Council may reduce or enlarge the number of committee members at their discretion.)

Five (5) two-year terms on the Recreation Committee with terms beginning April 1, 2017, through March 31, 2019. The Recreation Committee is a seven-member body that directs their efforts in the area of providing for the recreation and park needs of the community. Meetings are generally held on the second Monday of the month. 

Three (3) two-year terms on the Board of Adjustment/Design Review Board with terms beginning April 1, 2017, through March 31, 2019. The Board of Adjustment/Design Review Board is a five-member body appointed by the City Council for the purpose of considering requests for variances from the zoning code. The members also sit as the City’s Design Review Board. Board members serve a two-year term and are compensated in the amount of $357.00 per month. The Board meets bi-monthly generally on the second and fourth Thursday of the month.

A substantial time commitment of approximately 10 hours per week is necessary to be a Board member. In addition to the bi-monthly meetings, Board members are expected to visit the sites and review the plans of projects prior to the meeting. The Board acts on an average of 14 items per meeting. It is desirable to have or be able to acquire certain skills or aptitudes, such as the ability to understand and conceptualize architectural drawings, and to visualize building mass and volumes based upon on-site staking plans. Experience in the building trades, architecture, historic preservation, landscaping, planning and/or real estate would be an asset. 

Five (5) two-year terms on the Parking, Traffic & Circulation Committee with terms beginning April 1, 2017, through March 31, 2019. The Parking, Traffic & Circulation Committee is a nine-member body that acts in an advisory capacity on matters pertaining to parking, traffic, circulation, transit, the Parking Management Plan, and traffic complaints. Meetings are generally held on the fourth Thursday of the month.

Four (4) two-year terms on the Heritage Committee with terms beginning April 1, 2017, through March 31, 2019. The Heritage Committee is currently a seven-member body that that acts in an advisory capacity on matters pertaining to historic preservation such as placement of a structure which is not on the Historic Resources List on the Historic Register; removal of a structure from the Historic Register; creation of a special designation plaque program; alterations to “E” rated structures; and demolition of historic structures in a commercial zone. Meetings are generally held on the third Monday of the month.

Two (2) two-year terms on the Environmental Sustainability Committee with terms beginning April 1, 2017, through March 31, 2019. The Environmental Sustainability Committee is a five-member advisory body to the City Council. The purpose for the Committee is researching, reviewing and advising the Council on items related to protecting the environment and improving the community’s future sustainability. The Committee receives its work assignments from the City Council. Committee members typically work in subcommittees to research issues and policies and prepare recommendations for approval by the Committee for submission to the City Council. A personal time commitment of 10-15 hours per month may be necessary to accomplish tasks. Regular meetings are generally held on the third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. Meetings may be two or more hours, and often require a great deal of preparation time. 

Five (5) positions on the View Restoration Committee; 3 two-year terms and 2 one-year terms beginning April 1, 2017. Members of the View Restoration Committee adjudicate view claims submitted by property owners to restore pre-existing views that are alleged to be significantly impaired by vegetation. The five-member committee of local residents appointed by the City Council conduct public hearings to review claims, hear testimony and determine significant view impairment. The Committee may approve a view restoration order and establish a maintenance schedule for the subject vegetation on the property. The View Restoration Committee generally meets on the first Monday of each month at 6 p.m. in the City Council Chambers. 

Five (5) positions on the Citizens Measure LL Audit Oversight Committee beginning January 1, 2017, for one five-year term through December 31, 2021. Members of this Committee will review annually the expenditures of the Measure LL Fund and provide a subsequent public report to the City Council as to whether the Measure LL funds have been expended on items of the type described in Resolution 16.068 or the other items described in the Measure LL ballot measure.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: December 22, 2016

City Hall Closed - City Hall will be closed Friday, December 23 as that is the City’s every other Friday closed date. City Hall will also be closed on Monday, December 26 in observance of the Christmas holiday.

Trash Collection and Tree Recycling - There will be no delays for residential and commercial trash collection during the holidays. Waste Management will collect and recycle holiday trees on the regular collection days at no charge starting on Monday, December 26, 2016, through Friday, January 13, 2017. Trees must be cut to lengths less than four feet. Decorations, tinsel, metal ornaments, and metal stands must be removed from the trees. Please visit the city’s website www.lagunabeachcity.net/recycling for more information.

Holiday Transit Service Schedule - Laguna Beach Transit will be offering extended Off-Season Weekend Coastal Trolley operating hours on New Year’s Eve until 1:00 a.m. No transit services will be available on Christmas Day, December 25 or New Year’s Day, January 1. Transit Services will operate on a modified schedule on Monday, December 26 and Monday, January 2, operating from 9:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. For additional information please contact the Transit Department at (949) 497-0766.

Holiday Street Sweeping Schedule - On Monday, December 26, only non-residential areas will be swept. Residential street sweeping will not occur and parking restrictions will not be enforced.

Oak Street and Mountain Road Beach Access Improvement Projects - Construction began this week to start the beach accesses improvement projects at Oak Street and Mountain Road. The stairways are closed and signs have been posted to direct beachgoers to adjacent beach access locations. The project is scheduled to be completed in May 2017. For more information, please contact Tom Sandefur at (949) 497-0792.

Third Street Temporary Road Closure - On Tuesday, December 27, 2016,Third Street will be closed to through traffic from Mermaid Street to Park Avenue from 8:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. in order to trim 11 trees along this road. Residential traffic will be allowed to access and egress their property from Park Avenue to the top of the crest. For additional information, please contact Dale Schuck at 949-497-0735

Cress Street Sidewalk Improvements- On January 11, 2017, at 4:00 p.m., a neighborhood workshop will be held at the Cress Street entrance of Bluebird Park to provide information, answer questions, and obtain public input regarding proposed sidewalk improvements along the south side of Cress Street between Bluebird Park and Temple Terrace. Concept plans are available on the City’s website, at the Public Works home page, under “City Projects” and “Construction Projects List.” If you have questions or are unable to attend the meeting and would like to provide comments, please contact Alpha Santos at (949) 497-0729 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

New Code Enforcement Supervisor - After an open recruitment process, the Community Development Director is pleased to report that Lilian Irish has been promoted to the position of Code Enforcement Supervisor, the position was held by Fred Fix prior to his retirement. Lillian started her career in Code Enforcement in 2000 and has been serving as a Code Enforcement Officer for the City of Laguna Beach for the past three years.

Community and Susi Q Center Closed - The Community & Susi Q Center will be closed Saturday, December 24 through Sunday, January 8 for annual building maintenance.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: December 15, 2016

Glenneyre Parking Structure Archway Repair - Removal of a damaged section of an archway located on the second floor in the southeast corner of the Glenneyre Parking Structure (City Lot 6) is scheduled for December 20 through December 22.  During construction, the stairwell located directly under the archway will be blocked off and two parking spaces will be coned off for construction staging. All other areas of the parking structure are unaffected and will remain open and accessible.  Working hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday. If you have any questions, please contact Christina Templeton at (949) 497-0728.

Southern California Edison (SCE) – System Upgrade - SCE is wrapping up its months-long effort to upgrade an aging 4 KVA electrical system to a more modern and efficient 12 KVA system. To accommodate the work, SCE will be intermittently losing Glenneyre Street from Ruby Street to Center Street, and Diamond Street from South Coast Highway to Catalina Street on Monday, December 19, 2016, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Affected property owners have been notified. The project is anticipated to be completed by the end of next week.

Southern California Edison (SCE) – Pole Replacement Program - SCE’s ongoing pole replacement program will require power outages at six separate locations within the City beginning next Monday, December 19, and continuing through Wednesday, December 21. Residents and businesses within affected areas have been notified. Outages will be conducted during the day except for one location that will be from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. For current planned outage status, please visit www.sce.com/reliability and enter the outage number provided on the notice. For additional information on this outage, or to address special needs that are being accommodated by using electricity, please contact Ron Hall with Henkels and McCoy at (909) 664-4665.

Laguna SOCWA Wet Well Rehabilitation Project Construction of the Laguna SOCWA Wet Well Rehabilitation Project has begun and is expected to last through the end of May 2017. Construction activities impact portions of both the Lumberyard and City Employee’s Parking lots over the duration of project. The work will include bypassing the lift station, new underground sewer pipelines, emergency backup systems, rehabilitation of the wet well and a new biological odor control system that is expected to remove the odors experienced within the general proximity to the lift station.

City Hall Closed - City Hall will be closed next Friday, December 23 as that is the City’s every other Friday closed date. City Hall will also be closed on Monday, December 26 in observance of the Christmas holiday.

Jordan Villwock Recognized - Emergency Operations Coordinator Jordan Villwock was recognized this past week for his sheltering contributions (plans written/developed and classes taught) to the County of Orange to ensure they are better prepared to successfully respond to disasters. Jordan was recognized by the Chief of CalOES, Director of the Social Services Agency, Sheriff Sandra Hutchens, and the Orange County Director of Emergency Management, Donna Boston.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: December 8, 2016

Laguna SOCWA Wet Well Rehabilitation Project - Construction of the Laguna SOCWA Wet Well Rehabilitation Project will begin the week of December 12, 2016, and is expected to last through the end of May 2017. Construction activities will impact portions of both the Lumberyard and City Employee’s Parking lots over the duration of project. Notices will be sent to all parking lot permit holders. The work will include bypassing the lift station, new underground sewer pipelines, emergency backup systems, rehabilitation of the wet well and a new biological odor control system that is expected to remove the odors experienced within the general proximity to the lift station.

Coast Highway Bottleneck Project-South Coast Water District is tentatively scheduled to conduct potholing work (to better assess potential subsurface obstructions)from January 4 through January 16. This will be between Aliso Creek Beach to 9th Avenue, on the north bound number 1 lane. Pipeline construction is tentatively scheduled from January 31 through March 15, 2017. As a reminder, two crews will conduct pipeline constructionfrom 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. on Sundaythrough Thursday.   

What’s On – Laguna Beach Arts - Looking for arts events this holiday season? Visit the City of Laguna Beach and Laguna Beach Arts Alliance Cultural Arts Calendar on-line for events from December 2016, through February 2017. http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/lbvcb/artscalendar_16121702/

Champion Cross Country Runners - Laguna Beach athletes, led by Coach Fred Pichay, conquered high winds and a hilly course to bring home four gold medals at the Southern California Municipal Athletic Federation (SCMAF) Cross Country Championships this past Saturday. Christopher Drews, Luke Anderton, Whitney Winefordner and Isabela Reichel each claimed first place in their respective divisions.

Spark of Love Toy Drive -The Laguna Beach Fire Department is proud to again participate in the annual “Spark of Love” toy drive. This event is currently under way and goes through Saturday, December 24. All four of the City’s fire stations will be accepting new, unwrapped toys and sports equipment for disadvantaged children in our County. The City’s fire stations are located at 501 Forest Avenue, 285 Agate Street, 2900 Alta Laguna Blvd., and 31646 2nd Avenue. For questions, please contact Fire Administration at (949) 497-0700.

North Coast Highway Lane Closures - The Laguna Beach County Water District is currently replacing five fire hydrants along North Coast Highway between Aster Street and Myrtle Street. Lane closures are necessary.The work is scheduled to be completed by January 6, 2017.

Oak Street and Mountain Road Beach Access Improvement Projects - Construction to replace the beach accesses at Oak Street and Mountain Road will begin on December 19. The stairways will be closed and signs will be posted to direct beachgoers to adjacent beach access stairways. The project is scheduled to be completed in May 2017. For more information, please contact Tom Sandefur at (949) 497-0792.

Reminders:

Downtown Specific Plan Update – Review Draft Amendments (Section I) - The City of Laguna Beach and consultant MIG will continue their efforts on the Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) Update on Wednesday, December 14, 2016, during the Planning Commission’s regularly scheduled meeting at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall (505 Forest Avenue). The focus of the presentation and discussion will be on MIG’s recommended draft amendments to Section I (Introduction) of the existing DSP document. A copy of the Section I draft amendments are available to view on the project webpage (see link below). If you have questions, or for more information, please contact: Wendy Jung, Senior Planner, at (949) 497-0321; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. t; or visit:

http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/cd/planning/mjrplanginitv/downtown_specific_plan
_amendment/default.htm
.

Children’s Holiday Palette Exhibition - The Arts Commission selected 12 designs from 200 submissions for the 12th annual Children’s Holiday Palette Exhibition. On exhibit at City Hall from December 1 through December 30, 2016, from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and every other Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., will be works by: Grace Puffer (Aged 5), Charlotte Jameson (6), Alexander Insaurralde (7), Ella Berberian (8), Savanah Rodriguez (8), Hailey Huynh (9), Ha-Jin Attenborough (9), Isabella Reneder (10), Charlotte Sekerka (11), Gary Davidson (12), Katie Letourneau (12) and Maggie Zegawitz (13).This program is funded by the lodging establishments and City of Laguna Beach.

Winter Quarter 2017 Registration Activities - Registration for Winter Quarter 2017 classes is now available by visiting www.lagunabeachcity.net, by mail-in or in person at the Community Center at 380 Third Street or at the Community Services Department at 515 Forest Avenue.


Updates from the Laguna Beach City Manager’s office

The City Manager’s office prepares a memo for Councilmembers weekly with notes covering many subjects.

Released: December 1, 2016

Downtown Specific Plan Update – Review Draft Amendments (Section I) - The City of Laguna Beach and consultant MIG will continue their efforts on the Downtown Specific Plan (DSP) Update on Wednesday, December 14, 2016, during the Planning Commission’s regularly scheduled meeting at 6:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall (505 Forest Avenue).  The focus of the presentation and discussion will be on MIG’s recommended draft amendments to Section I (Introduction) of the existing DSP document.  A copy of the Section I draft amendments are available to view on the project webpage (see link below).  If you have questions, or for more information, please contact: Wendy Jung, Senior Planner, at (949) 497-0321; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; or visit:

http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/cd/planning/mjrplanginitv/downtown_specific_plan_amendment/default.htm

City Hall Exhibition - The current exhibition at City Hall, 505 Forest Avenue, features works from the Festival of Arts Permanent Art Collection. On public view, for the first time, is the newly restored painting by William Griffith, titled “Untitled, Aliso Canyon” painted in 1933 for A.B Goff. Through a generous donation by Gary Goff, representing the Goff family, this painting has been returned to its full grandeur. The exhibition runs through January 20, 2017, and can be viewed Monday through Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every alternate Friday.

First Friday Flicks at [seven-degrees] - First Friday Flicks will start on Friday, January 6, 2017, at its new location at [seven-degrees], 891 Laguna Canyon Road.  [seven-degrees] will be offering food for purchase and a cash bar starting at 6 p.m. The film starts at 7 p.m. followed by a post-film panel discussion. The first film will be, “Banksy Does New York” about the elusive street artist who launched a self-proclaimed month long residency in New York installing one unique exhibit a day.  This film is not rated with a running time 79 minutes. This program has been funded through the generosity of Laguna Beach residents Steve Chadima and Mark Porterfield.

Children’s Holiday Palette Exhibition - The Arts Commission selected 12 designs from 200 submissions for the 12th annual Children’s Holiday Palette Exhibition. On exhibit at City Hall from December 1 through December 30, 2016, from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and every other Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., will be works by: Grace Puffer (Aged 5),  Charlotte Jameson (6),  Alexander Insaurralde (7), Ella Berberian (8), Savanah Rodriguez (8), Hailey Huynh (9), Ha-Jin Attenborough (9), Isabella Reneder (10), Charlotte Sekerka (11), Gary Davidson (12), Katie Letourneau (12) and Maggie Zegawitz (13).This program is funded by the lodging establishments and City of Laguna Beach. 

Winter Quarter 2017 Registration Activities - Registration for Winter Quarter 2017 classes is now available by visiting www.lagunabeachcity.net, by mail-in or in person at the Community Center at 380 Third Street or at the Community Services Department at 515 Forest Avenue.

South Coast Water District Open House - On Thursday, December 8, from 6-8 p.m., the South Coast Water District will put on an Open House to address the project to improve the two-mile tunnel located beneath the bluff in South Laguna Beach that conveys sewage from nearby homes and business.

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