Header image with Photo of Supervisor Pat Bates. Followed by office information
August 23, 2013

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 Camuglia:
Deputy Chief of Staff

Sabrina Ross:
Deputy Chief of Staff

Sergio Prince:
Policy Advisor

Erik Weigand:
Policy Advisor

Emily Osterberg:
Policy Advisor

Veronica Yniguez:
Policy Advisor

Ruth Strachan:
Office Manager

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Volume 7 Issue 33

La Pata Avenue Gap Closure Project Advertised for Bid

The Board approved the Plans and Specifications and authorized staff to advertise the La Pata Ave/Camino Del Rio Extension Project for bid.

The La Pata Ave/Camino Del Rio Extension Project is the most significant County of Orange roadway improvement remaining in South County. It will complete a critical Master Plan of Arterial Highways roadway gap, as well as create an alternative route to the I-5 Freeway in times of emergencies. The project will improve overall mobility in South County.

Specifically, the project will widen La Pata Avenue from three to five lanes from approximately 750 feet south of Ortega Highway in the unincorporated County area to the existing road terminus at the County's Prima Deshecha Landfill.

A new roadway consisting of four new travel lanes will be constructed from the existing roadway terminus at the Landfill to the intersection of Calle Saluda in the City of San Clemente (gap closure). Camino Del Rio will also be constructed as a four-lane facility from its current terminus in the City of San Clemente to its future terminus at La Pata Avenue.

The Engineer's construction estimate for the project is approximately $74 million. In addition, construction management and a construction contingency is estimated at approximately $18 million, for a total construction cost of $92 million.

Construction funding will be provided from the following sources:
  • Measure M2
  • Proposition 1B State Local Partnership Program (SLPP)
  • CFD 2004-1/Corridor Mobility Improvement Account (CMIA) funds swap
  • Rancho Mission Viejo
  • OC Public Works/Road Fund 115
  • City of San Juan Capistrano
  • OC Waste and Recycling

For more information, please click here.

Kaiser Permanente Grant for “FIT Cities”

“FIT” stands for “fifteen in ten” and reflects our 2010 goal to reduce the Orange County obesity rate from 19% (based on 2007 data) to 15% in ten years. “FIT Cities” is an initiative that provides technical support and training to cities and communities to identify environmental opportunities to promote healthy lifestyles, including improving walking and biking safety, and supporting increased park and recreational facilities access, etc.

Funding will support a full time coordinator with background in public health and urban planning, as well as two to three mini-grants that will support projects in local jurisdictions working on specific initiatives.


OCTA Improving Streets and Roads through Measure M

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) Board of Directors issued a call for projects last week for $47 million in Measure M funds for local street and road improvements. The dollars will be awarded through the Comprehensive Transportation Funding Program.

Approximately $35 million will be available to add capacity to streets and roads throughout the County and $12 million for projects to synchronize traffic signals. Applications are due October 25 and projects are anticipated to be awarded in the spring.

Approximately $35 million will be available to add capacity to streets and roads throughout the County and $12 million for projects to synchronize traffic signals. Applications are due October 25 and projects are anticipated to be awarded in the spring.

Measure M, the half-cent sales tax for transportation improvements renewed by voters in 2006, has provided more than $108 million for projects as part of the Comprehensive Transportation Funding Program.

Projects Sought to Improve Bikeways

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) Board of Directors released a call for projects last week as part of OCTA's Bicycle Corridor Improvement Program. Approximately $4.3 million will be available to fund bicycle and pedestrian projects throughout the County. Funds will be awarded based on:
  • Connectivity to transportation systems
  • Inclusion in a regional bicycle plan
  • Air quality improvement
  • Financial viability
  • Project readiness
Applications are due September 30 and projects are anticipated to be selected by the OCTA Board later this year. In 2012, OCTA awarded $9.4 million through the Bicycle Corridor Improvement Program for 23 projects.

OCTA Board Receives Update on ACCESS Service Transition

In the first month of MV Transportation operating the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) paratransit service, known as ACCESS, passengers report they are generally pleased with the service and overall quality.

OCTA has continually monitored performance, safety, customer comments and on-time performance to ensure service quality has been maintained.

During the first three weeks of service, the accident rate remained less than one accident per 100,000 miles traveled, and on time performance increased over the same time last year. OCTA, MV Transportation and Yellow Cab representatives participated in three advisory committee meetings to get feedback from customers on the transition.

MV has provided 4,500 trips per day to ACCESS riders throughout Orange County.

OCTA: On The Move

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) has released its latest edition of “Orange County: On The Move.” To view the OCTA e-newsletter, please click here.


Emerging Drug Trends among Adolescents

The Orange County Sheriff’s Department is hosting multiple public presentations Thursday, August 29 from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM, covering the most up-to-date drug trends involving adolescents. This training has been presented across the nation to educators, other law enforcement agencies, health care professionals, and parents.

The FREE presentations are open to the public and will be given by Drug Liaison Deputies representing your community, including Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo and San Juan Capistrano. For more information, please click here.

Summer / Labor Day Holiday Avoid DUI Campaign

Officers from the Laguna Beach Police Department will be deploying this weekend to stop and arrest alcohol and drug-impaired drivers in the Department’s ongoing traffic safety campaign.

DUI saturation patrols will deploy in areas with high frequencies of DUI collisions and/or arrests. For more information, please click here.

The Summer/Labor Day National Anti-DUI crackdown has resulted in a significant number of DUI arrests from routine traffic enforcement and special “Avoid the 38” Task Force DUI deployments.

Over the course of the enforcement period ending September 2, checkpoints, saturation patrols and warrant events will continue to be conducted throughout Orange County. All regularly scheduled traffic and patrol officers will focus efforts at stopping and arresting DUI drivers during their normal shifts.

“Avoid programs” – named for the number of police agencies in each county, Sobriety/Driver’s License Checkpoints, multi-agency DUI Task Force operations and local roving DUI patrols – are set region-wide during the 18-day Summer/Labor Day Campaign.

For more information, please click here.

OC Crime Lab Uses Familial DNA to Solve Cold Case

In 2012, the OC Crime Lab solved a case that was 34 years old by using familial DNA. A forensic scientist at the Orange County Crime Lab had been trying to solve this case since 1996. This case was solved by using DNA that was taken from crime scenes to identify family members of a suspected criminal.

This landmark case from Santa Ana is the first time familial DNA has led to an Orange County crime being solved.

There are only three states that allow this technique, and California is one of them. However, in California, there is a limit for familial searches through DNA. These limits include sexual assaults and homicides, where there is serious risk to public safety, as well as when all other leads to the case have been exhausted.

Since this case met these requirements, and with over 30 years of no new leads, detectives of the cold case unit from Santa Ana Police Department requested authorization to use family DNA in their investigation.

This case would have never been solved had it not been for familial DNA, as the assailant is deceased and his DNA would have never been put into the database.

For more information, please click here.


Clerk Services Made Easier for Busy Workers and Families

Special weekend hours for the Orange County Clerk-Recorder Department will again be available Saturday, Aug. 24 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Old County Courthouse in Santa Ana and the department’s branch offices in Laguna Hills and Fullerton. The August date will be the third monthly Saturday opening of all offices by Clerk-Recorder Hugh Nguyen.

As the special Saturday openings have surged in popularity, especially with families and those who work during the week, additional Saturday hours are being planned once a month through the end of the year. Check www.ocrecorder.com for exact dates and times. FREE parking will be available at all three locations.

For more information, please click here and here.


Unsecured Property Tax Bill Payments Due

The due date for Unsecured Property Tax bills mailed in July is September 3. These are taxes on business property, leased equipment, boats, and aircraft. Mailed payments must be received by this date or have a United States Postal Service postmark on or before September 3 to avoid incurring a 10% late penalty fee plus a $75 collection fee.

The Treasure-Tax Collector encourages taxpayers to save the cost of a stamp and pay on-line by eCheck at www.ocgov.com/octaxbill (there is no charge for this service). Once the eCheck payment is made, taxpayers will receive an email confirmation receipt they can print for their records or they can print the payment confirmation page. Online payments are considered timely up to midnight September 3.

Credit and debit card payments are also accepted through the Treasurer-Tax Collector’s website or through the automated telephone system by calling (714) 834-3411 (2.3% convenience fee for all credit and non-VISA debit cards with a minimum of $3.95 or $3.95 for VISA debit cards).

Payments can also be made in person at the Office of the Treasurer-Tax Collector at 625 N. Ross Street, Room G-58 in Santa Ana between 8:00 AM and 4:45 PM. Parking is not validated.


Hot Weather Tips for Pets
  • Overheating (heat prostration) can kill your pet. Never leave your pet alone in a vehicle, even with the windows cracked slightly, as it only takes a few minutes for the temperature inside to reach 160 degrees. With only hot air to breathe, your pet can quickly suffer brain damage or die from heatstroke. Parking in shade offers little protection, as the sun shifts during the day. When traveling, carry a gallon thermos of fresh, cool water for your pet.

  • In extreme hot weather, don’t leave your pet standing on the hot pavement, and keep walks to a minimum. Your pet is much closer to the ground and his body can heat up quickly.

  • Never take your pet on an outing unless you can provide a shady spot to rest and plenty of fresh water to drink.

  • Always provide plenty of shade for your pets that stay outside of the house. A properly constructed doghouse serves best. Bring your pet inside during the heat of the day and let them rest in a cool part of the house. Be sensitive to the needs of older and overweight animals in hot weather. Brachycephalic (snub-nosed) dogs (especially Bulldogs, Pekingese, Boston Terriers, Lhasa Apsos and Shih Tzus) and those with heart and lung disease should be kept indoors in air-conditioning as much as possible.

  • In hot, humid weather, don’t force your pet to get exercise after a meal. Always exercise your pet in the cool of the morning or evening.

  • A clean coat can help prevent summer skin problems, so keep your dog and cat well groomed. If your pet sports a heavy coat, shaving your dog’s hair to a 1-inch length will help prevent overheating. Do not shave your dog’s hair down to the skin, as this robs him of protection from the sun.
For more information, please click here.


OC Dana Point Harbor: Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day weekend, August 31 – September 2, for many people represents the end of the summer; but here in Orange County, some of the best weather of the year follows Labor Day. The following are suggestions for enjoying Dana Point Harbor during the busy weekend:

  • Public parking and picnic areas fill up early, so plan accordingly.
  • If you are a boater, plan ahead and bring supplies to your boat early.
  • Attendants will be monitoring parking gates during holiday weekend.
  • Campers, R.V.s and trailers are prohibited in marina lots and may be towed.
  • If you have guests coming, make plans to meet them at the parking gate.
For more information about upcoming events in Dana Point Harbor, please click here.


California Coastal Cleanup Day September 21

Every year, on the third Saturday in September, people join together at sites all over California to take part in the State's largest volunteer event – California Coastal Cleanup Day.

This year represents the 29th Annual Coastal Cleanup Day. OC Parks, OC Public Works and the City of Laguna Niguel are cohosting an invasive special removal project and trash clean up at Narco Channel/Laguna Niguel Regional Park. For more information, please click here.

OC Dana Point Harbor is also seeking volunteers for California Coastal Clean-Up Day. A unique aspect of the clean-up effort at OC Dana Point Harbor is an Underwater Clean-Up, and open water-certified divers are invited to volunteer and participate. For more information, please click here.


Laguna Niguel: Summer Concert Series

The City of Laguna Niguel invites you to enjoy its Summer Concerts in the Park series, featuring Tommy Tassi & The Authentics (50s/60s Rock ‘n Roll) on Friday, August 23 from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM at the Crown Valley Community Park Amphitheater. FREE shuttle service available. For more information, please click here.

Dana Point: Elephant Parade

Elephant Parade activities kick-off the weekend of August 23 at Doheny Beach. Afterward, the elephants will find homes around Dana Point for over ten weeks. For more information, please click here, here, here and here.

Laguna Beach: Art Festival Season

Don’t miss Laguna Beach’s world famous summer art festival season, which ends next weekend! For information on the Festival of Arts / Pageant of the Masters, please click here. For information on the Sawdust Art Festival, please click here. For information on Art-A-Fair, please click here.


In addition to my many meetings, briefings, and other supervisorial activities, I also:
  • Presented a certificate of recognition at the grand opening of the Dr. Joe Cortese Dog Park in San Juan Capistrano, named after a beloved local veterinarian. To see photos, please click here.
  • Attended the ‘Elephant Parade: Welcome to America Unveiling of the Herd’ reception in Dana Point.
  • Adjourned the Board of Supervisors meeting in memory of William Aiden McMurray of Laguna Beach.

My office also:
  • Attended an event benefiting the Dana Point 5th Marine Regiment Support Group.

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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