To bond or not to bond

That’s the question the council is asking voters

By BARBARA DIAMOND

Results of a city poll under way will be announced at the June 28 council meeting. The poll began last week and is expected to conclude next week, according to city officials. Questions were developed from a list of topics discussed by council at the May 10 meeting. The question the council most want answered is whether the voters will support a bond measure in November.

However, the dual-mode survey, conducted by e-mail and phone, has raised some hackles in the public, from both sides of the aisle.  

Retired city manager of Temple City and Laguna Taxpayers Assn. board member Karl Koski said he was pleased that the city is taking the poll. 

“It is essential to prioritize projects,” said Koski. “There are so many things, such as South Laguna sidewalks, the widening of Laguna Canyon Road and oh yes, the undergrounding of the whole city and they all have a price tag.  But I don’t think we are ready for the November ballot.”

 Koski would have preferred the entire city to be polled.

“The taxpayers are the ones who will have to pay for the improvements,” said Koski. 

Beautification Council member and former Arts Commissioner Leah Vasquez, who was polled by e-mail, said the survey lacked pertinent information.

“It doesn’t say what it is, what it intends to do or what are the consequences,” said Vasquez, who describes herself as socially liberal and fiscally responsible. 

Former council member and local businesswoman Ann Christoph, who was not polled, said she received a phone call describing the survey as focused on how to raise funds, such as 1.5 percent increase in local taxes or raise the bed tax to 14 percent.

“I think the idea of asking people is fine, but this is a rough measure without the pros and cons and tradeoffs included,” said Christoph. 

Former Planning Commissioner Norm Grossman said follow-up questions are important in determining a respondent’s preferences.

“I would be concerned if people who responded to the poll would support an increase in the bed tax if they knew it could possibly lead to the demise of the voluntary percentage of the taxes paid by the hotels that funds the annual budget of Visit Laguna and several art groups, including the museum and the arts commission,” said Grossman. 

South Laguna resident Chris Toy is unhappy that his request to see the questions without taking the survey was denied. 

However city Administrative Analyst Ryan Hallett said keeping a lid on the questions maintains the integrity of the survey and the reliability of the data. 

The first week of the survey was conducted by e-mail. This week phone surveys began, Hallett said. 

Phone numbers and e-mail addresses were obtained from the voter registration list. Using registration information ensures the pollster that the respondent is a resident and is not polled twice, Hallett said. 

The goal should be a minimum of 300 valid responses to justify a bond and guarantee passage of the bond, said Grossman.


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: June 2, 2016

2016 Beach Water Quality Report Card - Last week Heal the Bay released their 2015-2016 Beach Report Card.  The report gives Laguna Beach a great review!  During the summer season all 20 locations tracked in Laguna Beach scored an A or A+.  The winter dry season from November to March gave 17 beaches a score of A or A+.  The only low grade obtained was at the outlet of Aliso Creek in the winter months.  The excellent results demonstrate that the efforts of Laguna Beach residents, businesses, and City staff are working to promote clean beaches.  For more information the report card can be found at the following website:

http://www.healthebay.org/sites/default/files/BRC_2016_final.pdf.

Annual Composting Classes - The City’s solid waste hauler, Waste Management, will offer the third of four free composting classes planned for 2016.  The class will be held on Saturday, June 11, 2016, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at Lang Park, located at 21540 Wesley Drive. Compost bins and worm bins will be available for purchase during the class at a discounted price. Class attendees will be eligible to enter a raffle and win a free compost bin.  For more information regarding the class, contact the Waste Management class instructor, Lisa Ryder, at (310) 874-2499 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

It’s Time to Renew Your Shopper Parking Permits! - Residents who have participated in the shopper parking permit program in the past should have already received their 2016-2018 application in the mail. If you did not receive an application, or are interested in the program, please visit the City’s website at www.lagunabeachcity.net. Just click the “Shopper Permits” icon located on the City’s home page. From the website, residents can purchase parking permits on-line or by mail by downloading a PDF version of the information packet and application. The cost is $80 each for the first two shopper permits and $150 each for the third and fourth permit. If you received an application in the mail, please note that the enclosed Shopper Parking Reference Sheet referenced valid dates of August 1, 2014 – July 31, 2016.  This date was incorrect.  New Shoppers Permits are valid from August 1, 2016 through July 31, 2018. A revised Shopper Parking Permit Reference Sheet will be included with your shopper permit receipt.   Finally, the new Shopper Parking Permits will be mailed the last week in July.  For questions, please call the parking permit hotline at (949) 497-0314. 

Reminders:

Summer 2016 Recreation Registration - Registration for the summer quarter recreation activities is underway.  A wide variety of summer camps, programs and classes are being offered for all ages.  Register for activities online at www.lagunabeachcity.net (click on Recreation Classes), or by mail-in, or drop-off to the Community Services Department at 515 Forest Avenue.

Sunset Serenades - The Arts Commission has added an extra performance to Sunset Serenades, due to the weather related cancellation of the first concert. The additional concert will be held on Friday, June 3, 2016, at 6:30 p.m. and will feature a tribute to the musical talent of David Bowie. The free concert will be held at the Heisler Park Amphitheatre. This program is funded by the lodging establishments and City of Laguna Beach.

Laguna Canyon Road Utility Undergrounding-The final street resurfacing for the undergrounding work along the big bend portion of Laguna Canyon Road will require traffic to be flagged both ways through a single lane.  To minimize traffic impacts, this work will be completed at night.  The scheduled lane closures are from 8:00 p.m. on June 6 to 6:00 a.m. on June 7, and from 8:00 p.m. on June 9 to 6:00 a.m. on June 10.  All other work in the roadway will then be suspended until after Labor Day.

Southern California Gas Co. - Gas Line Repair-The Gas Company will be making a pipe repair on June 7 and June 10 at the intersection of Third Street and Mermaid Street from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  There will not be any lane closures for the repairs, but minor traffic impacts can be expected.


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: May 26, 2016

Sunset Serenades - The Arts Commission has added an extra performance to Sunset Serenades, due to the weather related cancellation of the first concert. The additional concert will be held on Friday, June 3, 2016, at 6:30 p.m. and will feature a tribute to the musical talent of David Bowie. The free concert will be held at the Heisler Park Amphitheatre. This program is funded by the lodging establishments and City of Laguna Beach.

City Hall Exhibition - The Artist Fund at the Festival of Arts is previewing “The Shoe Show,” its 2016, Art-To-Go collection at City Hall. Forty originals, by Festival exhibitors are on public view through June 28, 2016. A reception will be held on Thursday, June 2, 2016; from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Guests are encouraged to wear spectacular shoes.

Nita Carmen Park Sculptures - On Thursday, May 26, 2016, work will commence on the removal of the sculptures “The Sunbathers” at Nita Carmen Park. The works are being replicated in stainless steel by the artist Leonard Glasser and will be re-installed by December 2016.

Summer 2016 Recreation Registration - Registration for the summer quarter recreation activities is underway.  A wide variety of summer camps, programs and classes are being offered for all ages.  Register for activities online at www.lagunabeachcity.net (click on Recreation Classes), or by mail-in, or drop-off to the Community Services Department at 515 Forest Avenue.

Men’s Open Beach Volleyball Tournament- Laguna Beach is hosting the 61st Annual Men’s Laguna Open Volleyball Tournament at Main Beach on Saturday, June 4, and Sunday, June 5. Come out and support the world’s oldest continuously run beach volleyball tournament.

Community Services to Host Skate Park Field Trip -Come join your fellow skaters as City staff will transport them to skate at the Laguna Hills Skate Park on Saturday, June 4. The cost is $10 and all skaters must bring a helmet, elbow, and knee pads. Meet out front of Laguna Beach City Hall at 9:00 a.m. Skaters will be returned to City Hall no later than 1:00 p.m. Please register at least 72 hours in advance online at www.lagunabeachcity.net (click on Recreation Classes). Preregistration required.

Who’s Cooking Those Pancakes - Off-duty City Firefighters, Lifeguards, and Police Officers will be flipping pancakes, cooking sausage, and pouring coffee at the Memorial Day Exchange Club Pancake Breakfast on Monday, May 30, at Heisler Park.  Breakfast will be served from 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. with all proceeds benefiting child abuse prevention programs.  

Summer Festival Parking Passes Available June 1 - A standard pass is available for $20 and is valid at the ACT V lot (Lot 16) daily and at the Laguna College of Art + Design (LCAD) on Saturdays and Sundays (Lot 17).  The Premier pass is available for $30 and is valid at the ACT V lot daily, LCAD and Boys and Girls Club on Saturdays and Sundays, and at the Community Center Monday thru Friday after 5:00 p.m. and weekends.   Please contact Mariann Tracy (949) 497-0779 for more information.

Memorial Day Trolley Service Available May 30 - Coastal route trolley service will be available for the Memorial Day holiday on May 30, from 11:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. along Coast Highway.  For information regarding the transit service please contact the Transit Division at (949) 497-0766.

Laguna Canyon Road Utility Undergrounding-The final street resurfacing for the undergrounding work along the big bend portion of Laguna Canyon Road will require traffic to be flagged both ways through a single lane.  To minimize traffic impacts, this work will be completed at night.  The scheduled lane closures are from 8:00 p.m. on June 6 to 6:00 a.m. on June 7, and from 8:00 p.m. on June 9 to 6:00 a.m. on June 10.  All other work in the roadway will then be suspended until after Labor Day.

Southern California Gas Co. - Gas Line Repair-The Gas Company will be making a pipe repair on June 7 and June 10 at the intersection of Third Street and Mermaid Street from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  There will not be any lane closures for the repairs, but minor traffic impacts can be expected.

Reminder City Hall Closed - City Hall is closed Friday, May 27 through Memorial Day, Monday May 30. Essential public safety services will still be operating every day. City Hall will reopen on Tuesday, May 31 at 7:30 a.m. 

Reminders:

“My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016 - “My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016: To celebrate Laguna Beach, the City is sponsoring its second annual Photo Contest. Photographers are invited to submit high-resolution photographs fitting the theme “My Laguna.” Entries are due by 5:30 p.m. on June 1, 2016. We are looking for original perspectives on life in Laguna Beach and encourage images that depict the vibrancy, vitality, and livability or our City. Photographs may be entered in the categories of “Parks and Open Space,” “Built Environment,” “Community Life,” and “Beach Life.” Participants must live, work, or exhibit in Laguna Beach. All images must be taken within the city limits of Laguna Beach. Winning entries will receive $100, recognition at a City Council Meeting, be featured on the City’s social media channels, and be posted in a gallery on the City’s website. For details, complete rules, and information about how to enter, visit

http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/community/photo_contest.htm.

53rd Brooks Street Surf Contest - The waiting period for the 53rd Brooks Street Surf Contest begins on Friday, June 3! The surf contest, touted as the oldest surfing classic in the world, is open to Laguna Beach residents only.  This year, the contest “window” will include Fridays in addition to the weekend to increase the likelihood the event will occur.  To download the registration form, please visit www.lagunabeachcity.net or call the Community Services Department at (949) 497-0304 for more information. 


City gets a look at $57,524,600, fiscal 2016-17 budget

By BARBARA DIAMOND

The City Council will have more money than expected to spend in the next fiscal year---and lots of places to spend it.

Finance and IT Director Gavin Curran had the happy task of reporting to the council and members of the public at the budget workshop Tuesday afternoon that more revenue came in than expected during last year. The unanticipated increase offered the council the opportunity to fund or increase funding for staff-recommended projects and a wish list, appropriated when the two –year budget was approved in 2015.

“Staff assumed some moderate financial growth in 2016-17 and put in a three Percent increase in property taxes,” said Curran. “When we looked at sales last year, we pushed it up to four percent. But we didn’t change our estimates of 3.5 percent increase in hotel taxes and a two percent increase in sales taxes.”

The property tax increase adds $283,000 to revenue estimates. Community Develop Department fees also exceeded expectations, estimated to be $88,000, as did the vehicle license fees, now estimated to increase by $100,000. The parking fund is expected to generate $325,000, $75,000 more than anticipated.

The proposed budget is projected to be $57,524,600, with $107,300 left to address the wish list. 

Despite the increase in revenue, City Manager John Pietig cautioned the council and public to be aware of talk about recession in Sacramento. 

“It is important to keep this in mind as additional appropriations are considered,” said Pietig. 

However he did present 13 proposals for funding, with which the council agreed. His suggestions ranged from hiring new personnel to funding for a ballot measure if required after completion of a community survey and upping the salary of the Civilian Services Offer Jim Beres to compensate for added responsibilities.

Pietig also culled eight items from a 14-item wish list compiled from requests by council members and city departments.

Requests included funding for a lifeguard tower at Treasure Island, additional part-time hours at the Community Center, one time funding for experiments in traffic control programs such as scrambles, cultural arts staffing and a matching $50,000 grant for the Laguna Plein Air Painting Assn. sponsored by council members Kelly Boyd and Toni Iseman.

“This year we have more requests for funding than ever,” said Pietig.

And that was before 28 folks in the audience went to the microphone to plead their cases, in addition to the 52 community assistance grant applications, to be reviewed and recommending for funding by Boyd and Councilman Bob Whalen.

KX93.5 founder Tyler Russell submitted an application for a $40,000 annual maintenance grant, in addition to a one-time request of $23,490 for the installation of new equipment. The council was most impressed by the station’s desire to be an active player in critical situations.

“We are the only instantaneous source of information other than the Nexil system, which everyone isn’t subscribed to,” Russell said. “Everyone does have an FM radio.” 

Chamber of Commerce President Larry Nokes asked for another $45,000 to broaden an assessment of parking to encompass the whole city.

Former Councilwoman Ann Christoph asked the council to help communications with the owner of the land on which the South Laguna community Garden is planted and a financial contribution to implement the purchase of the garden.

John Thomas urged the council to fund police department requests to deal with tourist activities.

Diamond Crestview resident Matt Lawson supported the Fire Department’s request for $500,000 to continue fuel modifications in the city’s most dangerous interior canyons. Hobo Canyon is next on the list. 

“We urge council to make fuel modification a baseline budget going forward rather than a ‘wish list’ item and the same for ongoing maintenance,” said Lawson, a member of the Emergency Disaster Preparedness Committee.

The revised budget will come back to the council at the June 28. 

The version presented Tuesday is available for review on the city’s website, http://www.lagunabeachcity.com


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: May 19, 2016

53rd Brooks Street Surf Contest– The waiting period for the 53rd Brooks Street Surf Contest begins on Friday, June 3. The surf contest, touted as the oldest surfing classic in the world, is open to Laguna Beach residents only.  This year, the contest “window” will include Fridays in addition to the weekend to increase the likelihood the event will occur.  To download the registration form, please visit www.lagunabeachcity.net or call the Community Services Department at (949) 497-0304 for more information. 

Protest Against Monsanto:On Saturday, May 21, there will be a protest at the Main Beach cobblestone against Monsanto. This is a yearly occurrence and there have never been any issues. The police department will be monitoring the event.

Proposed Increases to Residential Solid Waste Service Rates - The City Council will conduct a public hearing on Tuesday, May 24, 2016, at 6:00 p.m., in the City Council Chambers to consider increasing residential solid waste service rates by 2.5% for each of the next three fiscal years, starting in fiscal year 2016-17. Residential service rates are for single to five-plex units. Public hearing notices were sent to property owners in early April and mailed to their mailing addresses as shown on the latest property tax roll. Questions regarding the proposed rate increases should be directed to the Public Works Department’sSenior Administrative Analyst, Liz Avila, via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at (949) 497-0344. 

Successful Annual Compost Giveaway - Last Saturday, the City conducted the annual compost giveaway event in appreciation of recycling efforts by Laguna Beach residents. The City’s contract waste hauler, Waste Management, supplied 20 tons of compost made from recycled green waste.   Approximately 300 residents were there for their free compost.

Construction Work on Broadway – On May 23 and 24, one westbound lane on Broadway will be closed in front of Whole Foods market to allow construction of a sewer lateral in the roadway.    Minor traffic delays can be anticipated during the working hours, which are 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

“My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016 - “My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016: To celebrate Laguna Beach, the City is sponsoring its second annual Photo Contest. Photographers are invited to submit high-resolution photographs fitting the theme “My Laguna.” Entries are due by 5:30 p.m. on June 1, 2016. We are looking for original perspectives on life in Laguna Beach and encourage images that depict the vibrancy, vitality, and livability or our City. Photographs may be entered in the categories of “Parks and Open Space,” “Built Environment,” “Community Life,” and “Beach Life.” Participants must live, work, or exhibit in Laguna Beach. All images must be taken within the city limits of Laguna Beach. Winning entries will receive $100, recognition at a City Council Meeting, be featured on the City’s social media channels, and be posted in a gallery on the City’s website. For details, complete rules, and information about how to enter, visit http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/community/photo_contest.htm.


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: May 12, 2016

Police Department Hosts Bike Rodeo- The Laguna Beach Police Department is hosting its second Bike Rodeo on Sunday May 15, 2016 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in Parking Lot #11 off of Laguna Canyon Road at Forest Avenue.  The Bike Rodeo is intended to promote the safe and legal operation of bicycles within our community especially for young children and teens.  Attendees can participate in an obstacle course, watch a professional BMX team stunt show, eat free hot dogs, and have a chance at winning a raffled bicycle.  This event was well attended last year so people are urged to come early and beat the crowds.   

Firefighters Conduct Live Fire Training - Laguna Beach Firefighters have begun “live fire training” with Firefighters from Anaheim and Orange.  This specialized training is being conducted in Anaheim and all Laguna Beach Firefighters will have an opportunity to participate in the four hour exercises. 

Lumber Yard Parking Lot Construction Activity - To accommodate the remaining construction for the new sewer system junction structure at the Lumberyard parking lot, a portion of the parking lot will be closed to the public (stalls nearest the lift station). The expected parking stall closures will be from Monday, May 16 to Monday May 23. 

City Manager Speaking – The City Manager will be speaking to the Laguna Beach Business Club at Hotel Laguna on Thursday, May 19th.  The meeting starts at 7:30 a.m.

Reminders:

Free Compost Giveaway on May 14th - The annual compost giveaway event will be held on Saturday, May 14, 2016, from 8:00 a.m. to noon, at the ACT V Lot #16, located at 1900 Laguna Canyon Road.  Free compost will be available in appreciation of the recycling efforts by Laguna Beach residents by the City’s contract solid waste hauler, Waste Management and their green waste recycler, Tierra Verde Industries.  This is a self-service event.  Please bring gloves, shovels, and 5-gallon containers.  There will be a limit of 5 containers per household and Sand bags will be available if you don’t have any containers. Limited quantities of bagged compost for up to four bags per household will also be available on a first-come, first-served basis.  Please visit www.lagunabeachcity.net/recycling for more information.

Traffic Congestion Town Hall Meeting on May 17th – The City of Laguna Beach will host a town hall meeting on traffic congestion on Tuesday, May 17, at 6:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers located at 505 Forest Avenue in Laguna Beach.  City staff will present information about the Third Street Hill project, general causes of traffic congestion, and efforts to reduce traffic congestion in the future.  The public is invited to attend this town hall meeting which will also be broadcast on the government channel 852, streamed on the City’s website, and archived on the City’s website for future viewing.


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: May 5, 2016

“My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016 - “My Laguna” Photo Contest 2016: To celebrate Laguna Beach, the City is sponsoring its second annual Photo Contest. Photographers are invited to submit high-resolution photographs fitting the theme “My Laguna.” Entries are due by 5:30 p.m. On June 1, 2016. We are looking for original perspectives on life in Laguna Beach and encourage images that depict the vibrancy, vitality, and livability or our City. Photographs may be entered in the categories of “Parks and Open Space,” “Built Environment,” “Community Life,” and “Beach Life.” Participants must live, work, or exhibit in Laguna Beach. All images must be taken within the city limits of Laguna Beach. Winning entries will receive $100, recognition at a City Council Meeting, be featured on the City’s social media channels, and be posted in a gallery on the City’s website. For details, complete rules, and information about how to enter, visit http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/community/photo_contest.htm.

Laguna Beach Represented at County Track Meet - On Sunday, May 1, fifty local youth participated in the Orange County Track and Field Championships at Laguna Hills High School.  The Laguna Beach Track Team is comprised of boys and girls ranging from 5 to 14 years of age. They competed in various running and field events. The Laguna Beach team had 16 participants that placed in the top four in their respective events and are moving on to the Southern California Championships in Downey on Sunday, June 5.

Coast Highway Utility Removal- Southern California Gas Company is scheduled to de-energize and remove a gas line on Coast Highway from May 9 through 26, Monday through Thursday, between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.  The utility removal work will require the closure of the southbound sidewalk, shoulder and outside travel lane of Coast Highway from Wesley Drive to Aliso Way.  One southbound lane will be maintained for travel and northbound lanes will not be affected during this period.  The contact for this project is Devon Weaklend, Southern California Gas Company Project Field Supervisor, at (951) 867-8129. 

Public Restrooms at 375 Broadway St. Closed for Sidewalk Replacement - Removal and replacement of the deteriorated sidewalks leading to the public restrooms at 375 Broadway started yesterday.  The public restrooms will be closed during the construction. Portable restrooms will be provided on the site.  The project is scheduled to be completed on Friday, May 13. 

Free Compost Giveaway on May 14th - The annual compost giveaway event will be held on Saturday, May 14, 2016, from 8:00 a.m. to noon, at the ACT V Lot #16, located at 1900 Laguna Canyon Road.  Free compost will be available in appreciation of the recycling efforts by Laguna Beach residents by the City’s contract solid waste hauler, Waste Management and their green waste recycler, Tierra Verde Industries.  This is a self-service event.  Please bring gloves, shovels, and 5-gallon containers.  There will be a limit of 5 containers per household and Sand bags will be available if you don’t have any containers. Limited quantities of bagged compost for up to four bags per household will also be available on a first-come, first-served basis.  Please visit www.lagunabeachcity.net/recycling for more information.

Farmers’ Market Relocation - On Saturday, May 7, the Laguna Beach Farmers’ Market will return to the Lumberyard parking lot (Lot 12) located at 521 Forest Avenue.  The market is open from 8:00 a.m. to noon (rain or shine).

North Laguna Neighborhood Trolley Service - On Thursday, April 28, City staff held a town hall meeting with residents in North Laguna to answer questions and address concerns regarding the Neighborhood Trolley Pilot Program.  Residents shared significant concerns about the proposed pilot program, indicating that the proposed modified route could have negative impacts to their coastal community by intensifying parking needs, vehicular, pedestrian and bicycle traffic, noise and light impacts.  As a result of the residential feedback and the close proximity of North Laguna neighborhoods to the existing summer festival coastal route, staff will recommend to the City Council on May 10 that the North Laguna neighborhood trolley route be removed from the 10-week pilot program.

Wildfire Awareness Week - This week is National Wildfire Awareness Week.  It is a good time to remember that the 1993 “Laguna Fire,” which occurred on October 27, is still the seventh most costliest wildfire in US history.  This fire burned over 16,000 acres of wildland and destroyed or damaged over 400 homes in Laguna Beach.  Only last week the State’s fire agency, Cal Fire, identified power lines as the cause of the deadly “Butte Fire” that burned 70,000 acres, destroyed 900 structures, and killed two people last year in Northern California. Residents and property owners are encouraged to ensure their homes are “fire-safe” today before a wildfire strikes.  Information on how to protect your property can be found on

the Fire Department webpage at: http://www.lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/fire/fire_prevention/default.htm

You can also sign up for a free Wildfire Consultation and a member of the Fire Department will come out and provide information on how you can “harden” your home against wildfire.  Finally, it is also important to know that the City is taking wildfire prevention measures to the State Capital with the introduction of SB1463 to require utility companies to ensure that their systems are safe to operate in areas of high fire hazards. 

Firefighter Quest for Burn Survivors to Visit Laguna Beach on Tuesday - A caravan of fire engines, police cars, support vehicles and burn survivors will be visiting Fire Station One next to City Hall on Tuesday, May 10, 2016, at approximately 1:00 p.m.  

CERT Spots Still Available! - The Laguna Beach Police Department still has spaces left for individuals interested in taking the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). Training will begin on Wednesday, May 11. Classes will then meet weekly from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., including two Saturday morning meetings. Applications must be submitted through the online recreation class sign-up https://secure.rec1.com/CA/city-of-laguna-beach/catalog.

Police Chief Speaking to Rotary Club - On Friday, May 6, the police chief will speak at the weekly Rotary club meeting at the Hotel Laguna at noon.


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: April 28, 2016

Sunset Serenades - Every Friday evening from May 6 through May 27, 2016, at 6:30 p.m., the Arts Commission will present Sunset Serenades. The free concerts are held at Heisler Park Amphitheatre with a variety of music genres.

5/6         Michelle Raitzin (Sings Bowie)

5/13       Devil’s Box String Band (Fiddle & Guitar)

5/20       Hugh Jorgan Trio (Jazz)

5/27       Featuring 4 Singer Songwriters

This program is funded by the lodging establishments and City of Laguna Beach.

Implementation of Temporary Parklet in front of 234 Forest (Alessá Restaurant) - As part of the temporary pilot demonstration projects approved by the City Council, the restaurant Alessá, located at 234 Forest Avenue, will install a temporary parklet within two parking spaces in front of the restaurant for a 60-day trial basis.  The parklet concept involves creating more outdoor seating and dining areas in the downtown and may assist in addressing topics in the Downtown Specific Plan Update project related to parking, circulation, transit, landscaping and streetscape.  Installation of the temporary parklet will begin the morning of Monday, May 2, 2016, and it is anticipated to be complete by the end of the week. 

Neighborhood Meetings for Beach Access Replacements - The City of Laguna Beach is proposing to replace the existing beach access amenities at three locations: Agate Street, Thalia Street, and Pearl Street.  The projects will remove and replace the existing stairs, pathways, benches and landscaping at each location.  Conceptual designs have been prepared and can be reviewed at www.lagunabeachcity.neton the Public Works page.  To learn more about the projects and to provide input, please attend one of the following on-site meetings:

Agate Street Beach Access on Monday, May 16, 2016 at 5:30 p.m.

Thalia Street Beach Access on Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 5:30 p.m.

Pearl Street Beach Access on Monday, May 23, 2016 at 5:30 p.m.

If you have any questions, or are unable to attend the meeting and would like to provide comments, please contact Wade Brown at (949) 497-0360 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Summer 2016 Recreation Registration - Registration for the summer quarter recreation activities begins Monday, May 2.  The summer brochure is being mailed citywide this week and will be available at the Community & Susi Q Center, Community Pool and Community Services Department, as well as online beginning Monday May 2. A wide variety of programs and classes are being offered for all ages.  Register for activities online at www.lagunabeachcity.net (click on Recreation Classes), or by mail-in or drop-off to the Community Services Department at 515 Forest Avenue.

Urban Water Diversion Units Placed Online - The Water Quality Department has placed the City’s urban water diversion units back online for the summer season.  The city maintains 25 urban water diversion units primarily along the coastline.  These diversion units serve to redirect over irrigation and other non-storm water, collected in the storm drain, to the sewer system.  These structures function to divert pollutants such as brake dust, oil, hydrocarbons from tires, fertilizers from landscaping, pesticides, and other debris to the sewer system.  Over the course of a year, an average of about 8 tons of debris and pollutants are pulled out of the diversion structures and hauled away for disposal.

Pipeline Construction on Victoria Place - An existing sewer pipeline will be replaced; located on Victoria Place, in between Solana Way and South Coast Highway.  Construction will begin May 2, 2016 and will be completed no later than May 13, 2013.  Victoria Place (in front of Dizz’s As Is) will be closed to through traffic from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  There will be no impacts to Coast Highway traffic.  The work area around Dizz’s As Is will be opened for parking each evening during the project.

Reminder:

Registration for the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Course - Please register for the upcoming CERT class. Training will begin on Wednesday, May 11, 2016. Classes will then meet weekly from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., including two Saturday morning meetings. Mandatory attendance is required at all classes. To be considered for this training, you must be a resident of Laguna Beach or work within the city limits, be at least 18 years old and have no felony convictions. For questions regarding this press release contact Jordan Villwock, Emergency Operations Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or 949-497-0389. Applications must be submitted through the online recreation class sign-up:

https://secure.rec1.com/CA/city-of-laguna-beach/catalog.


Historic Inventory Resource update and Draft Ordinance workshop will be held at city hall on June 16

The City of Laguna Beach will hold a public workshop with the Heritage Committee on Thursday, June 16, at 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., in the City Council Chambers (505 Forest Avenue). The workshop will be held to review a revised draft of the City’s Historic Preservation Ordinance. Please note that the previously scheduled workshop on April 18 will not be held.

The City of Laguna Beach is in the process of updating its current Historic Preservation Ordinance as it relates to an updated field survey that was recently conducted by Ostashay and Associates Consulting, a historic preservation firm. Public workshops were held on March 18, 2013, March 15, 2014, December 8, 2014, April 28, 2015 and September 15, 2015 to discuss the current field survey and other historic preservation topics as they relate to the Historic Preservation Ordinance.

At the workshop held on September 15, 2015, it was determined that the City would host a series of workshops with the Heritage Committee to focus on several topics to be considered in the draft Historic Preservation Ordinance update. On October 19, 2015, November 16, 2015 and January 25, March 1, and March 21, workshops were held to discuss the topics listed within the historic preservation ordinance. The discussion at each of these workshops will be referenced to revise the draft Ordinance.

The next workshop (as mentioned above) will be held to review a revised draft of the Historic Preservation Ordinance with the Heritage Committee and the public. The draft ordinance is scheduled to be published on the City website (address below) by Friday June 3. It is anticipated that additional workshops/meetings may be required to further review the draft ordinance prior to the future Planning Commission and City Council review of the ordinance. These additional dates will be discussed at the upcoming workshop.

A copy of the previously reviewed draft ordinance (dated 4/20/15), the draft inventory and information about the upcoming workshops and past workshops relating to the Historic Inventory Update can be found at: http://lagunabeachcity.net/cityhall/cd/preserve/historicresources.htm

For additional information or questions, please contact Martina Caron, Senior Planner at (949) 464-6629 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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