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City Council Meeting Wrap-Up

October 11, 2011

The following is from the Oct. 4 Laguna Beach City Council Meeting. All members were present.

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PUBLIC COMMENT

•Kristine Thalman, interim executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, introduced herself and said that she was excited and honored to take on the new position. She said the chamber has a phenomenal board of directors, whose goals and objectives were economic development, revenue generating opportunities, enhancing memberships and educational workshops.

Thalman said the board would like to help the business community by hosting a public official's night, which she has found beneficial in her previous jobs in private and public sectors.

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•Speaking on behalf of the Laguna Beach Alliance for the Arts, Festival of Arts board member Wayne Baglin announced that October is National Arts and Humanities Month and encouraged the community to enjoy all the arts Laguna has to offer. He named numerous events, which are listed on the alliance website's calendar.

Baglin also said that the festival, the Pageant of the Masters, Art-A-Fair and the Sawdust Festival all reported that attendance and sales were up this year, indicating Laguna's economy is improving.

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Committee appointments

Faye Chapman, Lawrence D. Esten and Rick Scott were appointed to the Housing and Human Services Committee for two-year terms that will end Oct. 31, 2013.

Donna Rae Valenti, who has served since last fall as the executive director of the Laguna Relief and Resource Center, was appointed to another one-year term.

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Amendment to city employee agreement, 5-0

The council approved an amendment to the city's memo of understanding with the Municipal Employees Assn. to ensure the city has water quality personnel in town to respond to after-hour sewer emergencies.

Subsidized housing is provided for four wastewater division employees, but sometimes they are not all available, so a fifth employee will be added. Living quarters have been provided in the Corporation Yard at ACT V.

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Underground utility district assessments approved, 5-0

With a majority of ballots cast in favor of a underground utility assessment district for Allview Terrace and Allview Place, the council awarded a $247,7000 construction contract to HAC Corp.

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Plein Air Painters get free parking, 5-0

The council voted unanimously to make 50 parking hangers available to the Laguna Beach Plein Air Painters Assn. for the invitational that began Oct. 9 and lasts until Sunday, and to bag four meters near the Laguna Art Museum from Friday to Sunday.

Pearson said earlier in the meeting that artists from all over North America would be participating in the event. Art created at the weeklong event will be on sale at the Collectors' Soiree Gala at the Laguna Art Museum on Saturday. For more information, visit http://www.lagunaartmuseum.org.

—Barbara Diamond

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