Laguna Beach City Council
CITY COUNCIL MEETING RECAP — 7/20/2021
Music In The Park At Bluebird Park
Returns August 29
The Arts Commission recommended presenting one concert at Bluebird Park on Sunday, August 29, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. Approved by Consent. While all Music In The Park events at Bluebird Park were moved to the Festival Of The Arts some months ago, this one date will return to the park.
George Weiss: I fought for the return of additional concerts at Bluebird Park. Fortunately, we will be getting this one concert back. I have learned from other residents that few people have taken the bus to the Festival of the Arts at midday on Sunday to attend these previously relocated concerts.
Proposed Kitchen Waste Amendment To The Waste Collection Service Agreement Approved 5-0
Due to State regulations requiring the recycling of kitchen waste (SB-1383), the City Council approved the re-negotiating of the City’s contract with Waste Management so that it will provide for the recycling of residential kitchen waste at the additional cost of $2.10 per single residential unit for 2021-22 and $.60 per month for fiscal year 2022-23.
George Weiss: This is an interim measure, as the City will be issuing a request for proposal for solid waste collection services in 2022. The City has been doing business with the same vendor for 28 years, so with Waste Management’s contract expiring soon, it presents an opportunity to see if the City can improve the services provided and/or lower costs. This may also provide an opportunity to review how green waste is processed. With the goal of creating a more resilient, greener town, we could look at options for recycling kitchen waste from restaurants and stores, and compost this locally with the City using the compost for public parks and landscapes. Perhaps all green waste could be processed locally for the benefit of the City, businesses and residents.
Laguna Residents First Submits Ballot Initiative Allowing Residents To Vote On Major Development Projects
Last week, Laguna Residents First submitted its ballot measure to the City Attorney for review. If it makes the election ballot and passes, this measure would permit residents to vote on the approval of all major commercial developments in Laguna Beach. Once the current initiative is reviewed and approved by the City Attorney, a summary of it will be posted in a local newspaper. Then Laguna Residents First will begin canvassing to collect the 1,700 signatures needed to place the initiative on the ballot for November 2022.
To find a complete copy of the initiative, see: www.lagunaresidentsfirst.org. I encourage everyone to read this document and consider pre-registering. Your signature will only help ensure that the initiative can be voted on in the November 2022 election. More details below:
From Laguna Residents First‘s Website:
A ballot initiative is being circulated by Laguna Residents First (LRF), a grassroots political action committee promoting policies and programs that protect the unique value of Laguna Beach. LRF is for preserving the local environment, including the heritage and charm of Laguna. LRF believes that as the city evolves and changes with the times, commercial development projects should:
• Be unique, not part of large, monolithic developments.
• Be responsible, so that each project mitigates the impact it has on its neighbors, Laguna residents, and visitors. This includes areas such as traffic, parking, safety, scale, and aesthetic impacts.
• Be innovative in finding ways to preserve the well-known value of Laguna's look and feel.
George Weiss: Full disclosure: I was a co-founder of Laguna Residents First, but I resigned when I announced my City Council candidacy. I still fully support the goals of this organization.
Ban On Retail Sales Of Tobacco Products On September’s City Council Agenda
In 2020 and 2021, Beverly Hills and Manhattan Beach passed bans on the sale of most tobacco products. I’m hoping Laguna Beach can build on its previously passed ban on smoking in public places, restaurants and bars. I believe we should lead in helping prevent our teens from getting hooked on all forms of tobacco, a known carcinogen that is directly or indirectly responsible for 400,000 deaths a year. In addition, we can reduce the risk of fires in our open space and the number cigarette butts that we sometimes see on our streets and sidewalks. This is one small step we can take to make Laguna a greener, healthier town. Your comments expressing support or opposition are welcomed.