Header image with Photo of Supervisor Pat Bates. Followed by office information
July 20, 2012

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.














Don Hughes:
Chief of Staff

Kristen Thornton:
Deputy Chief of Staff

Ray Grangoff:
Deputy Chief of Staff

Sergio Prince:
Policy Advisor

Sabrina Ross:
Policy Advisor

Ruth Strachan:
Office Manager

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Volume 6 Issue 28

Planning Department Follow-Up Audit

The Performance Audit of Planning and Development Services report released in 2009 identified 44 findings and recommended improvements to OC Planning. In response to the audit, the Board appointed Supervisor Campbell and me to ensure progress was made in addressing these issues.

On Tuesday, the Board received a follow-up audit from the Performance Audit Director to determine the overall progress made in addressing the initial audit’s findings and recommendations. All 44 findings from the 2009 audit were either fully addressed (39), partially addressed (3), or are no longer applicable (2).

There is still some area for improvement. The follow-up audit includes six recommendations in the area of succession planning, staffing, organizational structure, and human resources practices. At the Board meeting, I initiated a directive for follow-up and implementation of these recommendations.

To read the audit, please click here.

Sheriff Law Enforcement Penalty

The Board voted to increase the penalty on defendants convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs to offset the costs of alcohol testing. The amount of the penalty increases from $37 to $50.

A recent cost study determined the cost to the OC Crime Lab to perform an analysis of blood, breath or urine for alcohol content is currently $180. The State governs the total penalty that the County can assess; thus, we are unable to recover our full costs for the tests. The action to increase the penalty will help shift the financial burden of testing to the lawbreaker rather than the general taxpayer.

Vicious Dog Ordinance

The Board approved an amendment to the County’s Vicious Dog Ordinance, implementing provisions of the California Food & Agricultural Code.

This amendment will provide OC Animal Care the authority to impose dog ownership restrictions on owners of dogs that have been determined “Vicious.” This determination is carried out by OC Animal Care through its due process procedures and is not specific to any particular breed of dog.

The amendment to the ordinance will apply to owners of Vicious Dogs, who repeatedly and willfully refuse to comply with imposed safety restrictions or maintain their animals in a manner that protects the public.

This provision, authorized by State Law, will be useful in such situations, where all other means of protecting the public’s safety have been exhausted, especially given that an owner of a Vicious Dog, who is required to surrender their animal to OC Animal, could immediately obtain another dog to continue to terrorize their neighborhood.

Staff will be bringing forward additional modifications to the ordinance in the coming months that will further clarify the definition of a Potentially Dangerous and/or Vicious Dog as well as how investigations are conducted, while providing legally required and necessary due process.

For more information, please click here and here.

Public Interest/Access Agreement with Ocean Institute

The Ocean Institute, located in Dana Point Harbor, educates 350,000 visitors annually through more than 40 marine science and maritime history programs. More than 110,000 K-12 students and 8,000 teachers annually participate in the Institute's 61 award-winning, immersion-style programs. Students can voyage onto the ocean, study in labs, and live aboard tall ships or in the chaparral to learn about ocean facts, sea creatures, oceanography, science, and California history.

To that end, the Board approved a Public Interest/Access Agreement with the Ocean Institute and California Coastal Conservancy to support the Institute's receipt of $1,000,000 in Conservancy grant funding for construction of the Maddie James Seaside Learning Center.

When completed, the Maddie James Seaside Learning Center will include a fixed, floating teaching platform, Sustainable Seas-Local Reef Ecosystem exhibit, Climate Change exhibit, Biodiversity Aquarium/Science Lab, and Population/Environmental Impact exhibit, along with renovation of the existing lobby and courtyard to be made available for public educational opportunities.

For more information, please click here and here.

Donation for OC GRIP

The Board was pleased to accept a personal donation in the amount of $50,000 from Angels Outfielder Torii Hunter for the District Attorney to use to enhance the Orange County Gang Reduction and Intervention Partnership (OC GRIP).

OC GRIP is a law enforcement partnership that identifies at-risk youth and aims to increase school attendance and decrease gang activity. The District Attorney formed OC GRIP committees with the Sheriff's Department and police from several cities, including the Fifth District cities of Mission Viejo, San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano.

The OC GRIP Team works with community members, teachers, and students on how to report serious gang crimes, as well as gang bullying and gang graffiti, to law enforcement.

We thank Mr. Hunter for his generosity and support of this important program.

WIA Individual Training Account Master Agreements

The Board approved use of the State of California Eligible Training Provider List (ETPL) and the standard Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Training Account Master Agreement with ETPL providers for training services in demand occupations for WIA eligible participants.

The Orange County Workforce Investment Board (OCWIB) selects training providers listed on the ETPL and located in the local area to provide training services in demand occupations. Agreements are executed between the County and the training providers, who are then listed on the OCWIB Approved Training Partner Directory.

To view the Approved Training Partner Directory, please click here. For more information, please click here.

Juvenile Justice Commission Annual Report

The Board received a presentation on the Juvenile Justice Commission’s Annual Report. Former Supervisor and Juvenile Justice Commission Member Bill Steiner spoke to the Board about work done over the past year. To read the report, please click here.


OC Fair Express

The special express bus service to the OC Fair is back this year and with expanded service in South County! Skip traffic and parking hassles and save big aboard the OC Fair Express!

Take a non-stop bus ride to the OC Fair for only $1.50 each way and receive a coupon good for $2 Fair Admission – that’s up to $9 off! The non-stop bus will drop you off in front of the Fair’s yellow gate.

Busses depart hourly on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Catch the OC Fair Express at one of these 3 convenient South County locations: Laguna Hills Transportation Center, Irvine Metrolink Station, or the Junipero Serra Park and Ride.

For more information please click here.

OCTA to Install 100 New Solar Powered Bus Stop Lights

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) has begun installing the first of 100 new solar-powered bus stop lights as part of a project that will enhance safety for passengers throughout the County.

The project was made possible by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Section 5309 Bus Livability Initiative Grant. FTA officials awarded OCTA $80,000 to have 1,334 bus stops equipped with solar lights throughout the County by the end of the project.

The installation of the new lights builds on OCTA’s bus stop safety program that began in 2005 in response to recommendations from an American Public Transit Association Peer Review Committee evaluating bus system safety.

The new bus stop lights incorporate high-intensity LED lighting to increase lighting at the stop and provide a way for riders to signal coach operators that they are at the stop. Such devices are useful at night, as well as in locations where existing street side lighting is minimal or does not exist.

Officials expect the installation of the 100 new bus stop lights to be completed by the end of October, before the end of Daylight Savings Time, when nightfall comes during the late afternoon hours.

Angels Express Draws Record Ridership This Season

Record numbers of riders are hopping aboard the Angels Express trains and heading to Anaheim on the service provided by the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) and Metrolink.

The Angels Express provides roundtrip service from Los Angeles Union Station and the Laguna Niguel / Mission Viejo station to all Angels weekday home games beginning at 7:05 PM. Angels Express service also is offered this year from Riverside on the IEOC Line for every Friday night game, partially contributing to the rise in ridership.

Last year was the first for the Angels Express, with ridership during the season totaling 20,613. This year, those numbers are expected to be shattered, as just halfway through the season more than 20,000 riders already have climbed aboard.

Roundtrip tickets for the Angels Express are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, $4 for youths (ages 6 to 18) and children under 5 ride free with the purchase of an adult ticket.

The Angels Express is a partnership of OCTA and Metrolink in cooperation with the Riverside County Transportation Commission, Metro and the Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee, which provides funding to projects that remove vehicles from the roadways, resulting in reduced emissions.

For more information about the Angels Express train service, including train schedules and how to purchase tickets, please click here.

OCTax Honors Orange County Transportation Authority

Last week, the Orange County Taxpayers Association (OCTax) hosted its second annual “Roses, Radishes and Royalty Awards” ceremony to recognize individuals and organizations that utilize taxpayer money. The awards ceremony honors the best and worst of individual, business and public agency taxpayer policy.

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) won the “Rose” award, due in part to the Measure M half-cent sales tax for creating jobs and delivering transportation improvements.

In accepting the award on behalf of the agency, CEO Will Kempton said, “OCTA operates like a business, and people want the best out of the investment with the taxpayer money we receive. Taxpayers have trusted us with the $4.1 billion on projects throughout Orange County, and we continue to invest more on the county’s infrastructure thanks to the renewal of Measure M.”

For more information, please click here.


Dry Boat Storage Analysis

For the Dana Point Harbor Revitalization Project, an analysis has been developed to compare the concept of constructing a Dry Stack Boat Storage Building versus a Dry Boat Storage Deck to meet the boat storage requirement for Planning Area 1 of Dana Point Harbor.

This analysis was based on the requirements to accommodate 493 spaces for dry boat storage, 334 spaces for visitor vehicles with trailers, and 157 vehicle parking spaces for both the boat storage users and the retail/office space in Planning Area 1.

For more information, please click here.

Dana Point Harbor Satisfaction Survey

OC Dana Point Harbor continually strives to improve the services provided in the Harbor. Throughout the year, they issue several Advisory Notices, including Boater, Community, Weather and Traffic Advisories to keep you informed of important events and information.

To assist them in their efforts, you are invited to take a short survey to help gauge if the Advisory Notices effectively provide information important to the overall needs of the Boaters, Merchants and General Public.

This survey will close August 10. For more information, please click here and here.


Orange County Coastal Coalition Meeting

Please join me Thursday, July 26 for our next Orange County Coastal Coalition meeting. The meeting will begin at 9:00 AM at Newport Beach Library. Presenting will be Clifton Davenport, Project Manager, California Coastal Sediment Management Workgroup; and David Cannon, President, Everest International Consultants, Inc.

The presentations will be followed by a question and answer session. For more information, please click here.


Mountain Lion Trapped in South County

Early last week, OC Parks rangers at Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park closed Serrano Cow Trail as a precaution following multiple reported mountain lion sightings along that trail over two days.

Last Friday, with no mountain lion captured on a trail camera placed on scene and no new tracks in two days, park rangers reopened the trail. Monday morning, a member of the public emailed park staff a You Tube video he had taken Sunday morning of a mountain lion and coyote on Serrano Cow Trail. To view the video, please click here.

A park ranger spoke with the reporting party and contacted California Dept. of Fish and Game (DFG), which had been notified of the previous sightings. Park rangers closed the trail and, during an investigation with DFG wardens, discovered the mountain lion in the same area. Park rangers decided to close the park at that time so armed wardens could continue their investigation without endangering the public.

Wardens attempted to scare off the cat, but it held its ground. DFG determined that the mountain lion’s behavior posed a potential threat to park visitors’ safety and trapped, sedated and removed it from the park after midnight. Park rangers reopened the park at 7:00 AM, Tuesday this week.

The Serrano Cow Trail remained closed for a couple more days as a precaution to investigate if another lion could be in the area. The lion found was a young cat, approximately 100 pounds and less than two years old and could have been traveling with a mother or sibling. Additional trail cameras are being placed in the area.

DFG, with the help of veterinarian Dr. Scott Weldy, determined that the animal was healthy, but unable to be released to the wild due to its lack of fear for humans. It will be placed at the Exotic Feline Breeding Compound in Rosamond while an appropriate long-term placement is sought. DFG invited media to film the cat at Serrano Animal Hospital in Lake Forest. To view the video, please click here.

Although mountain lion attacks on humans are extremely rare, conflicts are increasing as human populations expand into mountain lion habitat. Additionally, we may be attracting mountain lions to our property without even knowing it. To learn how to prevent deadly conflicts with these beautiful wild animals, please click here.

Second Annual Wilderness Celebration in Black Star Canyon

OC Parks is pleased to announce the Second Annual Wilderness Celebration in the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks will take place in Black Star Canyon on Saturday, July 28 from 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM.

This event, which partners with Irvine Ranch Conservancy, represents the second time that the area will be open for self-guided access. Light refreshments will be served and local community partners will have informational booths.

This area is part of 20,000 acres the Irvine Company donated to the County in 2010. Since moving from private to public ownership, more than 12,000 visitors have enjoyed public programs and open access days in the Irvine Ranch Open Space.

Onsite and advance registration will be available. To register online, please click here. For more information, please click here.


OC Animal Care: Catopia

Please join OC Animal Care in celebrating all that is wonderful about cats during their annual Catopia celebration Saturday, July 21 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Adoption fees will be reduced during the event and all adopters will receive FREE giveaways to get their new feline friend started out right.

For more information, please click here.

San Juan Capistrano: Low-Cost Pet Vaccinations

San Juan Capistrano will host a low-cost vaccination clinic for dogs and cats Wednesday, July 25 from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM in City Hall's back parking lot at 32400 Paseo Adelanto.

Dog vaccines include the four-in-one (DHPP, $17) and bordetella ($14). Cat vaccines include three-in-one (FVRCP, $17) and leukemia (FELV, $19). Dog and cat rabies vaccines are $7 each. Identification microchips are $28, and Purevax rabies vaccines for cats are $20.

Payments should be cash only. Pets must be on leashes or in carriers. For more information about the clinic, please call the City at (949) 234-4565.


Treasures in your Attic?

Is there a treasure in your attic? Bring your small treasure to the San Clemente Branch Library for an evaluation Monday, July 30 at 7:00 PM and find out! For more information, please click here.

eReader Open House

Learn how to download library books for FREE at the eReader Open House on Wednesday, August 15 from 10:00 AM to noon at the El Toro Branch Library, 24672 Raymond Way, Lake Forest. For more information, please call (949) 855-8173 or click here.


South County Student Honored for Artwork

A South County student has been recognized in the 2012 International Aviation Student Art Contest, themed "Silent Flight". Karen Ahn (13), a student at St. Margaret's Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano won second place for ages 10-13 with her interpretation of the contest theme.

Karen also received first place at both the state and national level for her artwork. For more information, please click here.


San Clemente: Ocean Festival

The San Clemente Ocean Festival is celebrating “The Greatest Show on Surf!” Come join the fun Saturday & Sunday, July 21 & 22 at the San Clemente Pier. For more information, please click here and here.

Dana Point: Summer Concerts in the Park

Celebrating over 23 years of FREE Summer Concerts in the Park, the City of Dana Point is proud to announce their 2012 line up. On Sunday, July 22, enjoy Inxsive: A Tribute to INXS. All concerts are from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM. For more information, please click here.

Rancho Santa Margarita: Summer Concerts Announced

The City of Rancho Santa Margarita is presenting five FREE concerts of fantastic musical performances this summer. Enjoy the County Rock band Rodeo Drive on Sunday, July 22 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM in Central Park. For more information, please click here and here.

Laguna Niguel: Summer Concert Series

Enjoy the FREE and always popular Laguna Niguel Summer Concert Series, featuring Derek Bordeaux Band on Friday, July 27 from 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM at Crown Valley Community Park Amphitheater. For more information, please click here.

Irvine: Summer Games at OC Great Park

Parenting OC Magazine’s 8th annual Parenting and Kids Expo will move to The Great Park in Irvine on Saturday, July 28 from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM, as part of a new event called Summer Games at the OC Great Park. For more information, please click here.

Mission Viejo: Prelude in the Park

Residents seeking a cornucopia of food, fun and music should pack their chairs and blankets and head to Mission Viejo’s Village Green on Saturday, July 28 for the Target Symphony in the Cities, featuring the Pacific Symphony. Prelude in the Park festivities kick-off at 4:00 PM at Oso Viejo Park, 24932 Veterans Way. For more information, please click here.


In addition to my many meetings, briefings, and other supervisorial activities, I also:
  • Met with representatives of the YMCA of Orange County to discuss their programs.
  • Met with OC Community Resources and OC Public Libraries staff to discuss South County library issues, including the August 19 Laguna Niguel Library Grand Opening. More on this in next week’s newsletter.
  • Met with Orange County Local Agency Formation Commission (OC LAFCO) staff to discuss South County governance issues.
  • Adjourned the Board of Supervisors meeting in memory of Paul Kochendorfer of Dana Point, and Beverly Ann Nelson of Dana Point.
My office also:
  • Attended the South Orange County Association of Mayors meeting in Laguna Hills.
  • Participated in the Orange County Veterans Advisory Council (OCVAC) Strategic Planning Session at the Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base. More on this in next week’s newsletter.
Please pray for the victims and their families along with the first responders of the horrific mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado.

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.

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