Police reach memorial funding goal

February 06, 2014|By Bryce Alderton

The Laguna Beach Police Employees Assn. has raised enough money to design and build a public memorial dedicated to two fallen police officers.

Police Det. Larry Bammer, association president, announced at Tuesday's City Council meeting that the group had actually exceeded its fundraising goal.

The association raised $60,000 — $15,000 more than its goal – to complement the city's $10,000 contribution toward a memorial not to exceed $70,000. The council unanimously approved the $10,000 expenditure along with competition guidelines.


The association will work with the city Arts Commission on a design contest for a free-standing sculpture and seating where a planter currently sits near the Police Department entrance at 505 Forest Ave.

The memorial will be dedicated to officers Gordon French and Jon Coutchie, both of whom died on duty — in 1953 and 2013, respectively.

Laguna Beach artists will submit applications noting their related experience, and the commission will select up to three finalists, a city staff report said.

Each finalist will be awarded $300 to meet with a commission subcommittee and develop designs. Finalists will present their designs to the commission, which, along with the association, will recommend a project to the council.

The hope is to complete the installation by Sept. 1, the first anniversary of Coutchie's death.

Applications must be submitted by 5 p.m. March 7 at


Rock'n Fish requests denied

A downtown restaurant cannot extend its hours for live, amplified music and dancing and must close its windows and doors when the tunes are playing.

The Laguna Beach City Council voted unanimously to uphold a Planning Commission decision to deny the changes requested by Rock'n Fish, 422 S. Coast Hwy.

Restaurant management wanted to extend the hours from midnight to 1 a.m. Sundays through Wednesdays and from midnight to 1:30 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, according to a city staff report.

Rock'n Fish also asked to eliminate a requirement that it keep its upper-level doors and windows closed when amplified music is playing.

The Planning Commission in December denied those two requests because Rock'n Fish did not provide a noise analysis. The commission, according to a staff report, could not determine whether music or noise would have adversely affected neighbors.

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