Mailbag: Commending officials for marine protection

December 23, 2010

The citizens of Laguna Beach deserve congratulations for the recent decision by the Fish and Game Commission to designate our ocean as a Marine Life Protected Area. Without the overwhelming support from Laguna's residents and leadership from a band of citizen volunteers too numerous to list, this designation would not have been possible.

Councilwomen Toni Iseman, Verna Rollinger, Jane Egly and Elizabeth Pearson also deserve our thanks and congratulations for this victory! We all appreciate their leadership on an issue so important to our village. And, more importantly, we saw they were not deterred from taking a courageous stand by a few strident critics who have and continue to personally criticize their environmental votes and commitment to our blue and green belts.

They are creating a legacy for which they should be honored, thanked and recognized.

I have been spending a lot of time in China this year and can testify to the destruction of marine life and ocean quality taking place across the Pacific. Overfishing, uncontrolled development along the coasts, discharge of poisons and sewage into rivers, etc. continues unabated. No one drinks tap water in China except the poor who have no choice. Their beaches are simply unfit for any human activity and their cities choked by air pollution that is literally doing serious damage to their lives. It is a crime! As is the destruction of their culture, history and neighborhoods as a result of a building approval process that provides for no citizen input. It is so sad to see.


Laguna Beach is setting a great example to so many others around the globe. I tell as many people as I can in China about how Laguna takes care of its environment and neighborhoods. Perhaps, someday, residents there will be able to make a difference too, led by enlightened civic leaders and active citizens like ours.

Thank you all for this great achievement.

Armando Baez

Laguna Beach


Bicyclists have rights, responsibilities

Both cyclists and motorists forget the details from time to time, so here is a review of the most common rights and responsibilities of cyclists and the California Vehicle Code where it appears.

Cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle drivers. (CVC 2120)

That includes stopping at stop signs.

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