January 29, 2010
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.
IN THIS ISSUE...
1. BOARD BULLETIN BOARD
2. TRANSPORTATION INFORMATION
3. COUNTY CONNECTIONS
4. SOUTH COUNTY NEWS
5. FIFTH DISTRICT SPOTLIGHT
6. ENVIRONMENTAL MEMOS
7. CRITTER CHRONICLES
8. NOTES FROM THE FIELD
9. SOUTH COUNTY CALENDAR
10. FIFTH DISTRICT WRAP-UP
Chief of Staff
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|BOARD BULLETIN BOARD
Public Safety Group Recommendations Approved
Significant progress has been made by the Public Safety Working Group in addressing the Sheriff’s Department’s $24 million shortfall and District Attorney’s Office’s $6 million shortfall for this budget year. The Working Group, which is comprised of the Sheriff, District Attorney, County CEO, Supervisor Campbell and myself, has met every week since December to develop solutions to the large shortfalls in our public safety budgets.
On Tuesday, the Board approved the group’s recommendations which included a combination of reductions in conjunction with increased allocations from other County funds. The Working Group will continue to meet to develop recommendations for the upcoming 2010-2011 budget, which is also facing significant shortfalls. To view the power point presentation given to the Board, please click here.
Adult Wrap Around Facility to Open
The Board approved a contract with Telecare Corporation this week to implement the Adult Mental Health Crisis Residential Program. This program is designed to allow in-crisis adults between the ages of 18 and 59 with diagnosed mental illness to voluntarily enter a “wrap around” program instead of a hospital.
The wrap around facility will provide both traditional therapy and rehabilitation model services including peer groups and socialization. Additional resources will be provided to family members and caregivers including case management and counseling. The goal of this program is to increase self-sufficiency for these individuals so that eventually they no longer require services and assistance. This program model was originally tested in Orange County with transition foster youth aged between 16 and 25 and was so successful the Health Care Agency hopes to duplicate its success with older adults.
“The Drop Zone” - Veterans Resource Center
The Board this week authorized the creation of a Veteran’s Student Center named “The Drop Zone” to be opened on the Rancho Santiago Community College Campus. In addition to providing academic assistance, this specialized center will give returning veterans access to peer support groups, case management resources, and a variety of on and off campus resources. The Health Care Agency will also be providing staff time and resources as this new program gets up and running.
We are very proud to continue to be at the forefront of serving our veteran population. This peer supported veteran focused resource center is just one more way the County of Orange is ensuring all residents have access to care. In addition to programs like these, I was also part of the team that helped launch the Orange County Veteran’s Network of Care. For more information about the variety of programs available to Orange County veterans please click here.
Farewell to Supervisor Norby
This was Supervisor Chris Norby’s final week as Supervisor for Orange County’s Fourth District. On Friday, he was sworn-in on the floor of the California State Assembly as the newest Member representing the 72nd District. Before Tuesday’s Board meeting, County staff from across all departments joined Supervisor Norby in a fitting and well-deserved farewell reception. It has been an honor serving with him on the Board of Supervisors and I look forward to continuing to work with him in his new capacity.
Air Canada to Begin Service at John Wayne Airport
This week, Air Canada announced new service from John Wayne Airport to Toronto, Canada starting April 6, 2010. Air Canada proposes to operate one daily flight from John Wayne to Toronto's Lester B. Pearson International Airport. To read more in Air Canada’s news release, please click here.
Laguna Niguel Road Improvement
To accommodate increased demand during peak traffic hours and on weekends, the City of Laguna Niguel approved a project to lengthen the existing northbound left-turn pocket on Goldern Lantern at the intersection of Chapparosa Road. The project is expected to start within next month and should take about 30 days to complete.
California to Receive High-Speed Rail Funding
The Federal Government announced Thursday that California will receive $2.34 billion in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding, more than any other state, to help build the State’s planned high-speed rail system.
The Anaheim to Los Angeles segment is poised to be the first link in the statewide system. To advance the environmental review process for this segment, anticipated to be completed early next year, the Orange County Transportation Authority has contributed $7 million.
The 27-mile Anaheim to Los Angeles segment is expected to break ground in 2012 and is estimated to create more than 90,000 construction jobs for the region.
Once complete, passengers will be able to travel between Anaheim and Los Angeles Union Station in 20 minutes – a trip that currently takes more than an hour by car.
For a complete list of the stimulus awards for high-speed rail, visit www.dot.gov.
The first census in 1790 was conducted under the direction of Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson. That census counted a population of 3.9 million. That’s only about one million more then the population today in Orange County. Since the days of Thomas Jefferson we’ve grown quite rapidly as a country-- our population has doubled many times over and our demographics are much more diverse. No question we are physically a very different place, however our basic values as a nation have remained unchanged. Those values of individual liberty, equality, and limited government our timeless and continue throughout our government institutions today.
Planning for the 2010 Census is currently underway. On Wednesday, I was pleased to participate in an open house for the US Census Bureau’s new Orange County field office.
The information gathered in the census provides important data about the demographics of the United States. This information is necessary to guide policy decisions at all levels of government which is why the County of Orange is working closely with the Census Bureau to ensure that every Orange County resident is counted. For a picture of the open house event, please click here.
OC Citizens’ Report
OC Auditor-Controller David Sundstrom released his Annual OC Citizens’ Report, which presents financial highlights for the County of Orange for fiscal year 2008-2009 and provides a summary of information contained in the County’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).
The OC Citizens’ Report was developed to be easily understood and provides the transparency in government that the public deserves. For the past six years, the County has received the prestigious Award for Outstanding Achievement in Popular Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association for producing this report.
To view the OC Citizens’ Report online, please click here.
Registrar of Voter Continues to Lead the Way
The County of Orange Registrar of Voters is one of eight counties selected by the California Secretary of State to be part of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) pilot program. Our Registrar staff will participate in workshops, meetings, discovery sessions, training, and implementation actives all designed to create the best statewide voter database possible.
HAVA is a Federal program tasked with building statewide voter databases in all states. This new system will enable local registrars to ensure residents are only registered in one county and allow for online registration. The California statewide database is scheduled to go live in late 2011.
|SOUTH COUNTY NEWS
Laguna Beach Library Grand-Reopening
Orange County Board of Supervisors, Orange County Public Libraries and the Friends of the Laguna Beach Library celebrated the recently completed renovations at the Laguna Beach Library with a family event held Monday.
Martha Lydeck, Friends of the Library President, Helen Fried, Orange County Librarian, and a member of my staff made brief comments and presented a proclamation in recognition of the event to a crowd of approximately 60 people and families eager to experience the newly renovated library. The Draper family was also on hand to present a check for $18,000 which will support the purchase of new furniture for the Children’s section.
During a four-month closure last Fall, the County installed a new roof, a new heating and air conditioning system, fresh paint, new carpet, and much more. Through the generous donations of the Friends of the Laguna Beach Library, new energy-efficient lighting was also installed throughout, all service desks were improved or rebuilt, the Children’s Department and Friends of the Library Bookstore received much-needed updating, and brand-new automatic doors were installed, improving access for patrons of all ages.
I encourage all South County Residents to check out the new library improvements! The Laguna Beach Library is open Monday – Wednesday 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Friday – Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., and is closed Sunday. For more information please visit http://www.ocpl.org.
RSM Library Closure
The Rancho Santa Margarita Library is currently closed for refurbishment. The library is scheduled to reopen on February 22, 2010. Library materials may be returned to the outside book drop or to any branch of the OC Public Libraries. Books on hold and Interlibrary Loans may be picked up at the Foothill Ranch Library.
San Clemente Library Expansion
The bustling San Clemente Library welcomes about 700-1000 visitors each day. In order to better accommodate the growing demands, the San Clemente Friends of the Library has secured approval to expand the library into the soon to be vacated Seaside Senior Center building, increasing the size of the library from 10,000 to 15,000 square feet. This expansion will allow the Friends of the Library to set up a permanent book store which will be used to sell donated books at low prices to support further library improvements. More information about the San Clemente Friends of the Library can be found by clicking here.
Send Your Story to Sacramento
Calling all small business owners! State Senator Wyland, who represents California’s 38th Senate District and the Fifth District cities of San Juan Capistrano and San Clemente, is asking for your stories about the impact of specific government regulations, taxes and/or fees that impede your ability to do business and expand your workforce. Specific examples will aid his efforts to craft legislation to reduce burdensome regulations. To view Senator Wyland’s letter to all small business owners, please click here. Similarly, if there are any County regulations that are negatively affecting your business in any way, please contact my office.
|FIFTH DISTRICT SPOTLIGHT
Law and Order Awards
American Legion Post 862 of Saddleback Valley held its awards ceremony on Monday honoring the best and brightest in law enforcement. Eleven Fifth District law enforcement personnel received the American Legion Medal of Honor in recognition of their dedication to maintaining law and order in the community. The recipients were:
Congratulations to each of the honorees on receiving this award. I extend my sincere appreciation to these men and women for the work they do to keep Orange County safe. For pictures of the event, click here.
- Deputy Joseph Cope, San Juan Capistrano
- Deputy Michael Lacey, Unincorporated South
- Deputy Miles Schuler, Laguna Niguel
- Investigator Brian Sims, Lake Forest
- Investigator Scott McLeod, San Juan Capistrano
- Crime Prevention Specialist Paula Monical, Mission Viejo
- Crime Prevention Specialist Margo Beauchamp, Aliso Viejo
- Crime Prevention Specialist Janet Dunford, San Clemente
- Crime Prevention Specialist Casey Few, Laguna Hills
- Investigative Assistant Diane Hollenbeck, Dana Point
- Investigative Assistant Ann Guba, Rancho Santa Margarita
As rain continues to threaten the southland, please remember to check conditions before heading out to the beach. Currently, warnings are in effect for Dana Point and San Clemente beaches due to bacterial levels in ocean or bay waters that may exceed health standards. For information on all of Orange County’s beach closures, warnings and advisories, please visit the County’s Ocean Water Protection Program website by clicking here.
Remember, everything that enters storm drains eventually goes into the ocean. Be sure not to put trash or other items in the storm drains and try to ensure loose items around your home cannot be swept away during heavy rains.
Pet Food Drive a Success
During South Orange County’s first pet food drive of the year, more than a ton of food was given away to families with pets in need. The event headed up by Lake Forest residents Jim Gardner and Ann Breuer – who started the free food program a year ago through Friends of Lake Forest Animals –was held at The Pet Rescue Center in Mission Viejo. The free food event is targeted for unemployed and seniors citizens.
As financial struggles force more and more residents to tighten their budgets, the goal of these food drives is to keep family pets in their homes and out of shelters. The next food drive will be held on February 13 at The Pet Rescue Center, 25800 Jeronimo Rd. Ste. 100. For more information, please click here.
|NOTES FROM THE FIELD
Lincoln Month at the Old Courthouse
During the entire month of February, OC Parks will be hosting a number of events highlighting the life and work of one of the greatest Americans of all time: Abraham Lincoln. For a list of these events, please click here.
|SOUTH COUNTY CALENDAR
Dana Point Wine Tasting
The Dana Point High School Girls Water Polo Team is hosting its third annual wine tasting event at The Salt Creek Wine Company, 30100 Town Center Dr., Laguna Niguel, on Friday, January 29. All proceeds from the event will go to support the team. The event will take place from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. For more information, please call at (949) 633-6479.
Story Time for Kids
The Mission Viejo Library is hosting a full day of “Library Storytimes” in the Friends Community Room of the library on Monday, February 1. Three sessions for tiny tots and toddlers are offered to introduce to little ones to the literary world with programs that include stories, puppets, and music. Older children can also enjoy interactive stories and crafts during later sessions. For event details and times, please click here.
Aliso Viejo Blood Drive
Child Care Amenities Group, American Red Cross and the City of Aliso Viejo are teaming up to hold a blood drive on Thursday, February 4 from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. The blood drive will take place at Step by Step Aliso Viejo, 10 Mareblu, Aliso Viejo. For more information, please contact Lisa Simon at (949)360-7022.
|FIFTH DISTRICT WRAP-UP
In addition to my many meetings, briefings, and other supervisorial activities, I also:
My office also:
- Attended the U.S. Census Bureau Open House of the Orange County Field Office
- Chaired the Orange County Coastal Coalition meeting/li>
- Performed the official swearing-in of the Board of Directors at the Laguna Beach Chamber Installation and Awards Ceremony
My staff and I look forward to continually providing you updated information in our Fifth District Newsletter and website.
- Attended Supervisor Chris Norby’s farewell reception
- Attended a Sierra Sage Group Meeting to provide an update on OCTA projects
- Attended the Grand Reopening Celebration for the Laguna Beach Library
- Participated in a Rancho Santa Margarita Sphere of Influence working group meeting
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.
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