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NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | April 30, 2009
City officials are going to have to make deep cuts to balance the 2009-10 budget. The proposed budget will be reviewed at a public workshop, set for 3 p.m. Tuesday. It is not balanced as required by law — it’s about $2.1 million out of whack. “Before the [expected] adoption of the budget at the June 16 meeting, I will be recommending approximately $600,000 in cuts from this preliminary spending plan,” City Manager Ken Frank advised the council. “By waiting until June [to make cuts]
NEWS
June 18, 2004
Barbara Diamond Despite the effects of the state's ongoing financial crisis, Laguna Beach officials were able to approve a budget Tuesday for the next fiscal year that cuts no public services or city personnel. The City Council voted 4 to 0, Councilwoman Toni Iseman was absent, to approve the $49-million budget with only minor tweaks to the recommendations by City Manager Ken Frank. "This is a year to pare costs rather than add programs," said Frank, who rarely admits publicly to an optimistic view of city revenue.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | May 19, 2006
Despite significant increases in revenues and a healthy local economy, city officials will have to suck it up to meet Laguna's financial obligations. Increases in employee benefits and construction costs will sap the hefty boosts in property and bed tax revenue projected in the $56.8- million draft budget presented to the council and the public Tuesday. City law requires a balanced budget, accomplished this year by hewing closely to programs and projects approved last year. "There are no new services, no new hours, no new anything ?
NEWS
August 5, 2010
  City parking revenues were significantly higher in fiscal year 2009-2010, which ended June 30, City Manager Ken Frank reported July 30. Receipts from parking meters and parking lots were 7% higher than the same period in the previous year, with total revenues about $3.4 million, he said. During the month of June, parking revenues were 12% higher than June 2009, despite gloomy weather. However, parking ticket revenues are down substantially for the same period, he added.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | February 14, 2013
A bump in city revenue allowed the City Council on Tuesday to put some money into desired unfunded or underfunded projects and to stash some cash in case federal reimbursement for flood damage repairs is not forthcoming. Increases in property, bed and sales taxes and parking fees, higher employee contributions toward pensions and reductions in department spending resulted in about $3.2 million more spendable revenue than expected when the 2012-13 budget was approved. However, City Manager John Pietig warned the council not to expect increases to continue at the same rate.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | July 30, 2009
California has finally balanced its budget and done it without grabbing local gas tax revenue. The proposed grab was denounced by city and county officials across the state, and lawsuits were threatened. After grueling negations in legislature and line editing by the governor, the state kept its hands off the gas tax revenue, traditionally a prerogative of local governments. “It was the right decision and legally the right way to go,” said City Manager Ken Frank, one of the most vehement opponents of the proposed grab.
NEWS
January 24, 2003
The City Council passed a resolution opposing any action by the governor or the state legislature to shift motor vehicle revenue from cities and counties. "They promised to keep us whole," City Manager Ken Frank told the council Tuesday night. "We will take the brunt of the tax cut they will take credit for." As part of his plan to balance the state budget, Gov. Gray Davis proposes to shift about $4 billion in motor vehicle taxes, which translates to a loss of $1 million to Laguna Beach.
NEWS
By Candice Baker | June 13, 2008
Despite declines in state and federal dollars, and widespread school budget crises around the state, the Laguna Beach Unified School District is still projecting an increase in revenues next year. Assistant Supt. for Business Services Norma Shelton presented the preliminary 2008-09 budget at the school board?s Tuesday meeting. Federal, state, local and lottery revenues were all expected to decline slightly from past years? levels. But total district revenue is expected to increase ?
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | June 22, 2007
Approval of the 2007-08 budget squeaked by the City Council Tuesday. The approved budget included estimated revenues of $43.4 million, plus a balance of $4.06 million, but how that was to be spent divided the council, with Mayor Pro Tem Jane Egly and Councilwoman Cheryl Kinsman voting "no" on the budget measure. "I don't know if I can be civil," said a piqued Egly. "I came here civil, but now I am not civil." Egly was incensed that council members were messing with a budget she thought had been hashed out in two previous workshops and earlier in the meeting had complimented City Manager Ken Frank for his deft synthesis of their diverse wish lists submitted at the June 12 workshop.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond, coastlinepilot@latimes.com | July 14, 2011
Laguna's 2011-12 budget has taken a couple of hits since the City Council approved it June 19, but all is not lost. City officials were advised earlier this month that the diversion of vehicle license fees to help balance the state budget will cost the city $89,000. This week, the city learned that the revenue from property taxes will be $150,000 lower than expected. However, city officials prepared for severe financial impacts due to the economy by setting aside in cushier years a Revenue Smoothing Fund, as yet untapped.
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NEWS
By Bryce Alderton | June 12, 2013
The Laguna Beach City Council gave the OK on a preliminary financing plan for the Village Entrance project at a special meeting Tuesday night inside a crowded Council Chambers. The council voted 3 to 2 for the plan, estimated to cost $42.3 million, despite some residents' pleas to put the matter to a community vote. Mayor Kelly Boyd and Councilwoman Toni Iseman cast the dissenting votes. The project, which includes a pedestrian park and a parking structure at the entrance to the city off Forest Avenue and Laguna Canyon Road, has taken too long, according to Councilman Steve Dicterow.
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NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | February 14, 2013
A bump in city revenue allowed the City Council on Tuesday to put some money into desired unfunded or underfunded projects and to stash some cash in case federal reimbursement for flood damage repairs is not forthcoming. Increases in property, bed and sales taxes and parking fees, higher employee contributions toward pensions and reductions in department spending resulted in about $3.2 million more spendable revenue than expected when the 2012-13 budget was approved. However, City Manager John Pietig warned the council not to expect increases to continue at the same rate.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | July 3, 2012
Art does more than enhance the city's reputation - it pays off. A June 28 report by Americans for the Arts concluded that Laguna Beach nonprofit arts and culture activities pumped more than $49 million into the local economy in 2010, provided more than 1,350 jobs in town and generated $4.6 million in local and state revenue. "It is a wise move for the city to support the arts," said Arts Commissioner Pat Kollenda. "People who are drawn to the city by our art and cultural events park in our lots, eat in our excellent restaurants, stay in our hotels and shop in our stores and galleries, as well as buy tickets to events.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond, coastlinepilot@latimes.com | July 14, 2011
Laguna's 2011-12 budget has taken a couple of hits since the City Council approved it June 19, but all is not lost. City officials were advised earlier this month that the diversion of vehicle license fees to help balance the state budget will cost the city $89,000. This week, the city learned that the revenue from property taxes will be $150,000 lower than expected. However, city officials prepared for severe financial impacts due to the economy by setting aside in cushier years a Revenue Smoothing Fund, as yet untapped.
NEWS
By Alan N. Boinus | July 7, 2011
Last week, in an effort to create a balanced budget and some fiscal stability in California, Gov. Jerry Brown and the Democrats in the Legislature finally passed a budget over continued Republican intransigence over the Democrats' desire to raise revenues rather than cut services like K-12 schools. Democrats sidestepped Republicans by finding a means to generate revenue without raising taxes (in fact, sales tax rates are down now) by closing a loophole in the law that had allowed Internet giants like Amazon.com and Overstock.com to avoid collecting sales taxes on their Internet sales.
NEWS
August 5, 2010
  City parking revenues were significantly higher in fiscal year 2009-2010, which ended June 30, City Manager Ken Frank reported July 30. Receipts from parking meters and parking lots were 7% higher than the same period in the previous year, with total revenues about $3.4 million, he said. During the month of June, parking revenues were 12% higher than June 2009, despite gloomy weather. However, parking ticket revenues are down substantially for the same period, he added.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | May 20, 2010
Mayor Elizabeth Pearson did some bragging May 14 at the State of the City Luncheon about the city’s accomplishments in the past couple of years, tempered by the economy and gave hints of better days to come. Pearson was the keynote speaker at the annual Chamber of Commerce luncheon at Montage Laguna. She spoke on the overall state of the city, but honed in on economic issues that impact the city’s business community, much of it echoed by representatives of elected officials at the state and county levels.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | May 19, 2010
Mayor Elizabeth Pearson did some bragging Friday at the State of the City Luncheon about the city’s accomplishments in the past couple of years, tempered by the economy and gave hints of better days to come. Pearson was the keynote speaker at the annual Chamber of Commerce luncheon, held May 14 at Montage Laguna. She spoke on the overall state of the city, but honed in on economic issues that impact the city’s business community, much of it echoed by representatives of elected officials at the state and county levels.
BUSINESS
By Jonathan Oyama | April 9, 2010
The Laguna Beach Visitors and Conference Bureau is hoping the recently enacted Travel Promotion Act will increase tourism and create new travel-oriented jobs. The law ? which provides direct aid for cities to promote themselves to overseas travelers ? was signed by President Obama on March 4. According to a press release from the bureau, the law would support about 4,000 travel-dependent jobs in Laguna Beach. It would also provide money for cities to promote U.S. tourism to international visitors.
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