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Todd Spitzer - Supervisor Third District
November 15, 2013 Volume 1 Issue 44
Supervisor Spitzer Participates in Veterans Day Ceremonies

Supervisor Todd Spitzer with the color guard from the 2nd Battalion, 11th Marine Regiment at the City of Irvine’s Veterans Day ceremony at Colonel Bill Barber Marine Corps Memorial Park.
Citizens across the nation marked Veterans Day on Monday. Supervisor Todd Spitzer participated in Orange County ceremonies honoring the men and women who have fought to protect the safety and liberty of all Americans.

“The members of our nation’s military are the bravest men and women in the world, having fought across the globe against tyranny and terror,” Supervisor Spitzer said. “They have defended our democracy and our citizens, and it is my humble honor to remember our fallen and to recognize these present day heroes.”

One of the ceremonies Supervisor Spitzer attended was in the City of Irvine, where the City had tables with biographies of veterans and displays of their military honors.

Supervisor Spitzer with Bill and Betty Jo Woollett. Bill Woollett is known to many Orange County residents as Irvine’s first-ever city manager, CEO of the Transportation Corridor Agencies, and Aliso Viejo’s first-ever city manager. Supervisor Spitzer and Mrs. Woollett are holding Mr. Woollett’s decorations from his service in World War II and the Korean War, including the Silver Star, one of the nation’s highest military honors.
“Time and again, I am struck by the humility of our nation’s heroes,” Supervisor Spitzer said. “I’ve known Bill Woollett for years, and I had no idea that he had earned the Silver Star in the Korean War until Veterans Day. Even when I asked him about the incident where he earned the Silver Star, he dismissed the incident like it was a minor, everyday occurrence. I’ve spoken to countless veterans about their service, and Bill’s understated response is representative of how unpretentious most veterans are about their amazing service to our country.”

Supervisor Todd Spitzer at the West Coast unveiling of the USPS Medal of Honor postage stamp with Cathy Metcalf and Orange County Veterans Advisory Council Chairman Bobby McDonald, an Anaheim Hills resident who is Supervisor Spitzer’s appointee to the Council. Metcalf is holding the Medal of Honor earned by her father, Walter D. Ehlers, an Orange County resident who is California’s only living World War II Medal of Honor recipient and one of only eight living recipients nationally.
Supervisor Spitzer also attended the United States Postal Service’s West Coast unveiling of the Medal of Honor stamp on Veterans Day. Other County elected officials, including Supervisors Shawn Nelson and Janet Nguyen, Clerk-Recorder Hugh Nguyen, and Treasurer-Tax Collector Shari Freidenrich, also attended the unveiling.

“The Medal of Honor is our nation’s highest honor, given only to the bravest of the brave whose courage goes above and beyond the call of duty. Most recipients have made the ultimate sacrifice, with 61% of the Medals of Honor since the start of World War II awarded posthumously,” Supervisor Spitzer said. “We are fortunate that California’s only living World War II Medal of Honor recipient, Walter D. Ehlers, is a resident of Orange County.”

At the unveiling, Cathy Metcalf brought the Medal of Honor earned by her father, Walter D. Ehlers, and spoke about him to those in attendance at the unveiling. The Congressional Medal of Honor Society has provided a copy of his medal citation here.

Two days after the unveiling, Postal Service officials went to the rehabilitation center at the Long Beach Veterans Affairs Medical Center to present a stamp sheet directly to Ehlers. The Medal of Honor stamp sheet includes the photos of the twelve World War II Medal of Honor recipients who were alive when the Postal Service began the design of the stamp sheet. Since then, four have died, including John Hawk of Washington who died last week. Only eight are still alive, including Ehlers. Information about the Medal of Honor stamps from the U.S. Postal Service is available here.

For information on local veterans services, the Orange County Veterans Service Office has a web site at
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Clerk-Recorder Holds Special Saturday Openings for Busy Citizens
Clerk-Recorder Holds Special Saturday Openings for Busy Citizens
Click on the image above to view a larger version.
After the Board of Supervisors appointed Hugh Nguyen as Orange County Clerk-Recorder in April, Nguyen implemented a series of changes ranging from fiscal accountability reforms to stronger personnel oversight. Part of the changes include better customer service for the people of Orange County. The Clerk-Recorder’s office is now open one Saturday a month to accommodate Orange County residents.

“I am so proud that over the past several months, our new Clerk-Recorder has acted swiftly to produce not only responsible government, but also responsive government,” Supervisor Todd Spitzer said. “These special Saturday openings allow working families to get the critical documents they need.”

The special Saturday openings held so far have had a high turnout from the public and have generated net revenue for the County. Copies of property records, marriage licenses and ceremonies, and birth, marriage, and death certificates are all available in at least two of the three Clerk-Recorder offices on each special Saturday opening.

“The response from the public and my staff to our special Saturday hours is much appreciated,” Clerk-Recorder Nguyen said. “We’re always looking for additional ways to help improve customer service.”

The Clerk-Recorder’s offices will be open from 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM this Saturday, November 16 and again on Saturday, December 14.
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OC Financial Gap – Sacramento Decisions Hurt OC’s Dedicated and Important Workforce
Orange County is in negotiations with five of its seven employee groups—and it couldn’t have come at a tougher time.

The County is facing unprecedented financial hardship: $50 million in promised State funds evaporated in the past year and the County must repay the State another $150 million on top of that. Diverting State prisoners to County jails will cost $6 million more than expected. Rising health and retirement costs will consume an extra $14 million next year just staying with the status quo.

Something has to give.

“I am committed to a fair solution that protects taxpayers and critical County services,” Supervisor Todd Spitzer said. “We will work hard with our labor groups to protect them. They worked hard in Sacramento to protect our tax dollars from the State raid but were unsuccessful in their efforts to protect Orange County’s dollars.”

When it comes to getting back a share of local property taxes, Orange County government is dead last: 58th out of California’s 58 counties. Orange County gets just 6 cents on the dollar—the average for all counties is 17 cents. Meanwhile, the State keeps pushing programs downstream that cost more than the funding provided to support them. Simply put, the County cannot continue doing the State’s job while getting pennies on the dollar. There will be—and are now—needs that won’t be met.

Tough decisions are ahead. Its nearly 16,000 employees are the County’s single greatest investment and asset. Salaries and benefits consume nearly one-third of the entire $5.4 billion budget.

This is not news to labor groups. The County has been speaking regularly with them about the financial realities of this year and next. The County asked the State to free up more of the taxes that flow from Orange County to Sacramento—and offered those additional dollars for employees first. But that deal fell apart when labor could not coalesce its own “supporters” in Sacramento. Now the County must maintain quality services, shepherd enough reserve funds for emergencies and protect employees from harsh layoffs and program reductions while shouldering the increased cost of providing for their pensions and health care.

Amid the dueling priorities, one truth remains: Working for County government still offers greater long-term security than most private-sector jobs. Individual salaries have increased in recent years through “step” increases awarded on merit. Employees are being recognized for their excellent work.

Thankfully, better days are in sight. As the economy improves and the real-estate market rebound catches up with property values, more resources will flow for critical services such as public safety, operating the jails, building and maintaining public facilities, and continuing programs for the neediest among us. Expect two more years of fiscal austerity and then we can all breathe easier.
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Delinquent Unsecured Notices Mailed Out to Property Owners
(Portions Courtesy of the Treasurer-Tax Collector)

This week, Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector Shari Freidenrich announced that 21,425 Delinquent Unsecured Notices were mailed in October to the names of Unsecured Property owners shown on the most recent unsecured tax roll.

“Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes said, ‘Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society,’ and they are a legal obligation we must all meet,” Supervisor Todd Spitzer said. “I support keeping taxes as low as possible, but those who dodge taxes simply force law-abiding citizens to pay more to cover the costs of government. I urge all people with delinquent taxes pay them as quickly as possible.”

These personal property taxes on businesses, boats, and aircrafts were originally due on or before September 3, 2013 and late penalties and fees have now been added. Additional penalties at a rate of 1.5% per month were added on November 1, 2013. If payment in full was not received by November 1, a tax lien will be filed in November for each delinquent assessment.

Treasurer-Tax Collector Freidenrich has implemented and enhanced several new customer service features that are now available. Tax payments can be processed by eCheck (no cost) or by credit card using the Treasurer-Tax Collector’s website at The convenience fee for credit cards was reduced by 10% last year, and a lower cost Visa debit card payment option of $3.95 was added. Last year, taxpayers saved over $650,000 from these reduced convenience fees. A taxpayer can now also scan the Quick Response code (QR code) on the unsecured tax bill to go to the property tax page on our website to view, print, or pay their tax bill.

If a taxpayer has questions on the unsecured property tax bill, they can contact the Treasurer-Tax Collector’s office either by e-mail at or by calling (714) 834-3411 between 9:00 AM and 4:45 PM.
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Third District Forum on Conditions of Children in Orange County Report Set for December 3

Click on the image above to view a larger version.
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“Free Speech vs. Hate Speech: How Public Agencies Can Maintain Civility Without Infringing on Free Speech” Set for December 4

Michael Houston, City Attorney, Anaheim
Bardis Vikili, Free Speech Attorney, American Civil Liberties Union
Rabbi Rick Steinberg, Commissioner, OC Human Relations Commission
Dan Hughes, Chief of Police, Fullerton
Manoj Mate, Constitutional Law Professor, Whittier Law School

Moderated by: Rusty Kennedy, Executive Director,
OC Human Relations Commission

Wednesday, December 4
6:30 - 8:00 p.m.

North Orange County Community College District Board Room
1830 W. Romneya, Anaheim (Just West of Euclid and South of 91 Freeway)

Free of charge
Light refreshments provided

Register today.

Proudly co-hosted by:

Chairman Shawn Nelson
OC Board of Supervisors

The Association of California Cities -
Orange County
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Pet of the Week

Click on the image above to view a PDF version.
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Events Around the District
Senior Health and Wellness Expo
Monday, November 18, 2013, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM
Anaheim Community Center, 250 E. Center St.

Free Shredding Event
Saturday, November 16, 2013, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Heritage Community Park, 14301 Yale Ave. & Lakeview Senior Center, 20 Lake Rd.

Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) for Teens – R2 Builders Droid Engineering
Saturday, November 16, 2013, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Orange Public Library & History Center, 407 E. Chapman Ave.

Christmas Basket Making Workshop
Sunday, November 17, 2013, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Silverado Community Center, 27641 Silverado Canyon Rd.

Lower Your Edison Bill
Wednesday, November 20, 2013, 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Tustin Area Senior Center, 300 S. C St.

Villa Park
Book Club
Wednesday, November 20, 2013, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Orange County Public Library – Villa Park Branch, 17865 Santiago Blvd.

Yorba Linda
Online Security
Saturday, November 16, 2013, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Yorba Linda Public Library, 18181 Imperial Hwy.

Table of Contents
orange arrow Supervisor Spitzer Participates in Veterans Day Ceremonies
orange arrow Clerk-Recorder Holds Special Saturday Openings for Busy Citizens
orange arrow OC Financial Gap – Sacramento Decisions Hurt OC’s Dedicated and Important Workforce
orange arrow Delinquent Unsecured Notices Mailed Out to Property Owners
orange arrow Third District Forum on Conditions of Children in Orange County Report Set for December 3
orange arrow “Free Speech vs. Hate Speech: How Public Agencies Can Maintain Civility Without Infringing on Free Speech” Set for December 4
orange arrow Pet of the Week
orange arrow Events Around the District
Martha Ochoa
Chief of Staff

Martin Gardner
Policy Advisor

Carrie O'Malley
Policy Advisor

Chris Nguyen
Policy Advisor

Christine Richters
Executive Aide

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