Header image with Photo of Supervisor Pat Bates. Followed by office information
July 11, 2008

Pat Bates's Picture

Welcome to this edition of the Fifth District Report, an electronic newsletter keeping you updated about the events taking place in Orange County and in the Fifth District. It is my hope that you find this distribution informative and I would encourage you to contact me regarding any thoughts, comments, or concerns you may have.



1. Board Bulletin Board

2. Transportation Information

3. South County News

4. County Connections

5. Orange County Fire Authority

6. Health Herald

7. Notes From The Field

8. Environmental Memos

9. South County Calendar

10. Fifth District Wrap-Up


Justin McCusker:
Chief of Staff

Sergio Prince:
Executive Director of Public Affairs

Jeff Corless:
Executive Policy Advisor

Elise Lampe:
Executive Policy Advisor

Chip Monaco:
Executive Policy Advisor

Ruth Strachan:
Executive Secretary II

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Volume 2 Issue 24
Board Bulletin Board

No Board Meeting Held This Week

There was no regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Supervisors this week.

Our next Board meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 15. For Agenda & Meeting Information, please click here.

Live Internet broadcasts of Board of Supervisors meetings are available and archived as video-on-demand. To view live and/or past Board meetings, please click here.

Transportation Information

Public Hearing on 241 Toll Road

On Friday, July 25, 2008, the U.S. Department of Commerce will conduct a public hearing on the appeal of the California Coastal Committee’s consistency finding made in February. The hearing will be held at the Bren Events Center on the campus of UC Irvine and is scheduled from 10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. For more information, please click here and here.

Renewed Measure M Environmental Oversight Committee

Last week at the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) Environmental Oversight Committee meeting, which I Chair for Renewed Measure M, members discussed two important topics relevant to its ultimate mission of acquiring land for open space preservation and allocating nearly $244 million for the freeway mitigation program.

The committee developed draft documents outlining suggested criteria to prioritize land acquisitions and restoration. Based upon initial recommendations from committee discussions, OCTA will press forward with researching the viability of each criterion outlined within these working documents prior to presenting a final plan before the Board of Directors. To view the draft documents for land acquisitions and restoration, please click here and here.

Improving our Bikeways in Orange County

With more than 800 miles of bikeways in Orange County, planners are looking to the public for feedback on ways to improve the network. The public is invited to attend a public workshop that will describe the planning process and gather ideas from residents to update Orange County Transportation Authority’s (OCTA) Commuter Bikeway Strategic Plan. The meeting will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, July 12, at OCTA headquarters, 600 S. Main Street in Orange. For more information, please click here.

South County News

New ‘Mission Viejo Life’ Blog Comes to Life

The City of Mission Viejo today officially launched its first blog – an online informational diary for residents interested in keeping a pulse on City news. Blogs (short for web logs) are frequently updated link-heavy online journals, offering real-time information and giving readers the opportunity to add comments for all to see.

Folks who visit the “Mission Viejo Life Blog” at http://missionviejolife.org/ will find up-to-date information about City activities, special events, meetings, projects, issues and general information about Mission Viejo. For more information, please click here.

County Connections

Orange County Property Values

Orange County Assessor Webster Guillory last month delivered the 2008-2009 Local Assessment Roll of Values, which includes all locally assessable property in Orange County. The total net taxable value on the Roll is over $424.0 billion, an increase of $15.2 billion. It is important to emphasize that these values for Orange County property are as of January 1, 2008. Some properties in this market had a decline in value prior to January 1.

Orange County has 34 cities, and every city had some properties that decreased in taxable value. These are properties with a market value that has declined and is now less than their Prop. 13 taxable value. This year, again, there has been significant inquiry from homeowners about Prop. 13.

A property value notice for each property was in the mail to the owners of real estate as of January 1, 2008. If a notice was not received by July 7, owners should contact the Assessor Department at (714) 834-2727 to verify their mailing address or to request a duplicate notice.

Value provided on the notices was determined in accordance with Prop. 13 and other applicable laws. All taxable property was valued as of January 1, the lien date, as prescribed by law. The Assessor is required to enroll the property’s Prop. 13 taxable value or the market value on January 1, whichever is lower.

Some people have asked: What’s going to happen through the end of this year? What happens if value continues to go down? The Assessor will continue to conduct reviews and may reduce taxable values even further if the market conditions on January 1, 2009, show a greater decline. Taxable value can also be restored (increased) as market value increases, up to the Prop. 13 taxable value limit.

Taxpayers seeking to appeal the values on their notice of valuation can find information about the appeals process on the Clerk of the Board’s website. For more information, please click here and here.

Orange County Fire Authority

Additional $1 Million in Emergency Funds

The Board of Directors in a Special Meeting approved an additional $1 million in emergency funding for ongoing operations. Currently, OCFA has 10 engines and additional support personnel engaged in the northern California wildfires. OCFA will be reimbursed for these funds by FEMA and the State Governor’s Office of Emergency Services following an end to the wildfires.

Fire Retardant Chemicals for Fire Prevention

The Executive Committee approved the purchase of seven compressed air foam systems (CAFS). CAFS are used to pre-treat structures and vegetation in advance of a fire to protect an area from heat and flame. The CAFS will be retrofitted onto patrol units and deployed on units staffed by Reserve crews.

Replacement Caterpillar D6T

The Executive Committee approved the purchase of a new Caterpillar D6T dozer for earthmoving and brush clearance. The new D6T will replace the current unit which was built in 1975 and originally scheduled for replacement in 1999.

Health Herald

Cities Readiness Initiative Funding

On my trip to Washington DC last January, among the issues I discussed with members of our federal delegation was inequities in Centers for Disease Control disaster preparedness funding.

Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI) funding is used to prepare for mass medication distribution and vaccination preparation. Each year, the Health Care Agency uses a portion of this funding for Point-of-Distribution (POD). These POD events train medical emergency volunteers and staff while distributing hundreds of free flu shots to Orange County residents.

Orange County was receiving $0.12 per capita for CRI funding, as compared to San Diego ($0.44), Los Angeles ($0.35), San Bernardino ($0.32), and Riverside ($0.32). Thanks to the efforts of our hard working members of Congress, I’m pleased to report funding for the County of Orange has been increased to $0.31 per capita for the coming year, bringing us in line with our neighboring counties.

Hydration Campaign to Support Healthy Youth

The Orange County Department of Education has partnered with the Orange County Fire Authority and other local agencies to launch the Hydrated & Healthy awareness campaign. A press conference has been scheduled on July 15 at 11:00 a.m. at Arnold O. Beckman High School, 3588 Bryan Avenue, Irvine, CA, 92602.

The goal of the Hydrated & Healthy awareness campaign is to educate the public about the importance of youth staying hydrated during physical activity, especially in warmer weather. Hydration before, during, and after physical activity is the key to preventing heat-related illness. For more information, please click here and here.

Notes From The Field

Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park to Reopen July 12

Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park, which has been closed since last October’s Santiago Fire, is scheduled to reopen Saturday, July 12 at 9 a.m. OC Parks staff, along with the Orange County Fire Authority and Orange County Conservation Corps, worked hard to re-grade roads and trails, clear brush and fallen trees to ready the park for reopening.

Ranger-led hikes will be offered at 10 a.m. Sunday July 13 and 20 up Red Rock Trail. The Ranger-led portion of the hike will be an approximately 1-mile round-trip hike. The staging area is approximately 1.5 miles from the Borrego entrance, making for a 4-mile total hike. This is a moderate hike, but not recommended for small children. Please make sure to bring plenty of water, sunscreen, appropriate attire and footwear, as well as a hat. For more information, please click here and here.

Environmental Memos

Orange County Coastal Coalition

On June 26, the Coastal Coalition hosted a very special meeting - an Environmental Education Information Exchange – at the Newport Beach Public Library. The Exchange gave providers of environmental education the opportunity to highlight their programs to elected officials and leaders from coastal cities, the County of Orange, California State Parks, water and sewer agencies, non-profit organizations, and others in Orange County who advocate on behalf of coastal and water quality issues.

The meeting was kicked off with an informative presentation provided by Pam Johnson of Inside the Outdoors. The presentation titled “Elements for Excellent Environmental Education” provided information on how to craft an “excellent” environmental education program as well as useful resources for teachers and students. To view Ms. Johnson’s presentation, please click here.

Following Pam’s presentation, over 20 providers of environmental education in Orange County described their program goals, target audience, and methods of outreach. The event ended with an opportunity to network with all in attendance, which resulted in lively question asking and information exchange.

Orange County truly has a wealth of “excellent” environmental education programs to offers its residents. These collective efforts to educate students of all ages are key to ensuring long-term stewardship of our watersheds and beaches. I commend them for their dedication and continued efforts to inspire and educate.

South County Calendar

Laguna Beach Festival of Arts: Smooth Jazz Concert Series

Beginning Saturday, July 12, The Festival of Arts is proud to present an astounding line up of Jazz musicians this summer at the Summer Smooth Jazz Concert Series on select Saturdays in July and August from 1 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Admission is free to the Smooth Jazz Concert with the purchase of The Festival of Arts ticket.

A special 75th Anniversary promotion grants everyone 75 cents admission after 7:50 p.m. every day of the week. All general admission tickets to The Festival of Arts are season passes – unlimited admission. For more information, please click here.

Second Saturday Art Fair in San Juan Capistrano

On Saturday, July 12, San Juan Capistrano will host its inaugural "Second Saturday Art Fair" from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Art Fair will be a year-round monthly event, showcasing over 50 artists, craftspeople, musicians, and performers who will display their work in the parks and plazas along downtown Camino Capistrano, Verdugo and Los Rios Streets. For more information, please click here.

Fifth District Wrap-Up

In addition to my many meetings, briefings, and other supervisorial activities, my office also:

  • Presented a Proclamation in honor of the 75th Anniversary of the Pageant of the Masters in Laguna Beach. For more information, please click here.
  • Met with Rescuing Unwanted Furry Friends (RUFF), along with the Director of Animal Care Services and the Manager of ACS Adoption Services, to discuss how best to access the adoption services at the Orange County Animal Shelter.
  • Attended a briefing on the Orange County Employee Retirement System (OCERS) actuarial experience study.
My staff and I look forward to continually providing you updated information in our Fifth District Newsletter and website.

Please feel free to contact my office with your concerns, comments or questions at (714) 834-3550.

It is an honor and a privilege to serve as your Supervisor for Orange County's Fabulous Fifth District. Thank you so much for your support!