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NEWS
By Billy Fried | August 9, 2013
My beef with the Village Entrance Project isn't just the exhaustion of much of our borrowing power, the five-year project disruption to our lives, the paucity of spaces it nets, the maintenance costs, the toxic soil remediation or the loamy, unstable ground. Nope, those could all be mitigated if the net gain to our quality of life and redress of our predominant transportation issues were met. This project doesn't necessarily need to be put to a public vote. Or completely gutted.
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NEWS
By Bryce Alderton | August 1, 2013
Certain water and sewer rates will rise next year for 2,000 South Laguna customers, but not as much as the South Coast Water District proposed. The board of directors approved the rate hikes during a special meeting Monday at district headquarters, but not without opposition from two residents and one board member. "We have to remember our obligation as a public agency, owned by the public, to keep [rates] down," board vice president Bob Moore said. The board voted 3 to 1 for the water and sewer rate increases, with president Wayne Rayfield and directors Richard Runge and Rick Erkeneff (who phoned in from Alaska)
NEWS
July 25, 2013
In reference to the proposed Village Entrance Parking Structure: A July 5 Los Angeles Times story, "The O.C. Tollway needs to refinance debt," is about the tollway going deeper into debt to avoid bankruptcy. The State Treasurer is backing the $2.2 billion new bond sale to avoid a possible default on its current bond payments, since the toll road has not lived up to ridership projections. Many predicted this right from the beginning. I believe the Village Entrance Parking Structure will not be sufficiently revenue-generating and the city of Laguna Beach will be forced to ask for more revenue bonds, just like the OC Tollway, digging our community even deeper into debt to avoid bankruptcy.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | July 18, 2013
Twenty-five South Laguna trees made the cut Tuesday to be designated Heritage Trees. The City Council on Tuesday approved the request of 10 property owners for the designation. City Planning Manager Ann Larson said the city's ordinance mandates proper maintenance to preserve the character and health of the heritage trees. The council decision came after two hours of discussion, much of it focused on the process by which heritage trees were chosen. Many South Laguna residents consider the process redundant, explaining that an inventory of heritage trees, including six owned by the city in Village Green Park, was conducted before South Laguna was annexed to Laguna Beach in 1987.
NEWS
May 30, 2013
Interests of silent majority need to be heard Regarding the proposed view ordinance: I moved to Laguna Beach 26 years ago, lured by the overall striking beauty and nonconformity of the city. Surrounding cities, to me, were too uniform and manicured. I bought a house in South Laguna in large part because of the large pine tree in the front yard and a good view of the ocean. I think it's crazy that someone can buy a house behind me tomorrow, fully aware of my tree and its size, and demand that I remove it or prune it to roof level.
NEWS
By David Hansen | March 27, 2013
No one likes to admit they have a dark side. But like alter egos, the alleys of Laguna Beach parallel our lives. We rely on them for privacy. We use them as shortcuts. We park in them illegally. Both in residential and business areas, there are an impressive amount of alleys in Laguna - all underutilized and most in disarray. But there are some really cool ones too. With a few exceptions, almost anywhere you live in the city - north, south or downtown - you have alleys nearby.
NEWS
February 7, 2013
The South Laguna Civic Assn. is asking gardeners and those interested in the South Laguna Community Garden Park to join them at 11 a.m. Saturday at Aliso Creek Inn & Golf Course, 31106 S. Coast Hwy. The group will discuss ideas and funding to make the park permanent, according to a news release. Fundraising is already underway and donations also have been made. A no-host lunch at Ben Brown's Cafe will take place afterward. Those interested should RSVP to Tom Joliet at longbrdr@hotmail.com.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | February 7, 2013
Property owner John Meehan has submitted a construction project to the Design Review Board with no idea when it will be permitted, if ever. His plans may be thwarted depending on a decision by the California Coastal Commission. That board voted 10-2 Wednesday to hear the appeal of a City Council decision to permit the demolition of a South Laguna home and other buildings on the property owned by Meehan, preventing him from demolishing structures to make way for new construction. The commission overrode its staff recommendation that the appeal did not raise substantial issue that would warrant a de novo hearing, which would mean the inclusion of information from all previous proceedings.
NEWS
By Billy Fried | February 5, 2013
For a town as outdoorsy and active as Laguna, there has always been a dearth of truly healthy restaurants. We have a surfeit of Mexican, Italian, pizza and burger joints, but vegetarian or raw cuisine had always been the purview of a few places like The Stand and Zinc. Not anymore. Active Culture serves some fine vegetarian bowls. Nekter raw juices just opened, and Living Juice - a locally owned, organic alternative - is set to migrate from the farmer's market to retail on Forest Avenue.
NEWS
By Barbara Diamond | January 17, 2013
Complaints that commercial planes are flying lower over Laguna more often than in the past have been dismissed by the Federal Aviation Administration, but city officials heard differently Tuesday night. The City Council voted unanimously to appoint council members Steve Dicterow and Toni Iseman to work with the public to pressure FAA about the noise. Residents are urged to contact the FAA and to provide letters with specific instances of airplane noise impacts to the FAA and the city.
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