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City Council Meeting Wrap-Up

March 08, 2012

The following is from the Laguna Beach City Council meeting of Feb. 28.

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PUBLIC COMMUNICATIONS

The public is allowed to speak on any subject not on the agenda. Speakers generally are limited to three minutes, but the time can be adjusted by the council.

•Gayle Waite, Laguna Beach Woman's Club president, presented a $5,000 check to Community Clinic Medical Director Dr. Thomas Bent. The money was raised at a fundraiser in honor of 2011 Mayor Toni Iseman.

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•Bruce Hopping commented that he had been told that Laguna Beach issued more traffic tickets than any other city. He felt that was an abuse of power and suggested that the city should instead focus on the arts festivals for revenue.

• Complete Streets Task Force chairman Chris Prelitz said the group envisions a healthy, prosperous community with safe, friendly, beautiful streets, walkways and bikeways that meet the needs of all residents and visitors. He thanked the council for adding the bike paths and complete streets to its priority list.

•Billy Fried gave a slide presentation showing the bike map he had introduced to the council at the Feb. 7 meeting. He urged the council to add bike racks to its priority project list and showed pictures of artistically designed bike racks in other cities. Max Isles, Charles Alban and Monica Finkelstein echoed Fried's comments.

•Gaby Sunhart suggested planting vegetables rather than grass in front of City Hall.

•Robert Ross reiterated his question about the amount the city had paid in attorneys' fees related to the recent bond sale.

•Eli Grossman denounced the Police Department, the council and the city attorney.

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COUNCIL AND STAFF CHAT

Council members and staff report on events they have attended, people with whom they have met and other items of public interest.

•City Treasurer Laura Parisi reported that 1,229 property owners in nine of the 15 active assessment districts will have lower bond payments.

Seven districts were included in refinanced bonds, completed last week. Reassessment district 12-1 resulted in new bonds with lower interest rates that will lower the assessments for 723 parcel owners by an average of 17%. The total savings will be $877,000 over the remaining term of the bonds.

Bonds for District 95-1 will be paid in-full two years early. The district's 367 parcels are mostly in Arch Beach Heights. Assessments will be eliminated from tax bills.

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