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Lisa Bartlett - Supervisor, Fifth District
February 14, 2020 Volume 7 Issue 7
James Dinwiddie III: New Deputy Chief of Staff


I’m pleased to announce the promotion of James Dinwiddie III as my new Deputy Chief of Staff. As a member of my Board staff since the day I was first sworn into office, James has been a invaluable member of our team. 

Throughout his tenure with my office, James’ policy portfolio has included a wide breadth of areas, including John Wayne Airport, OC Community Resources, OC Waste & Recycling, OC Fire Authority, General Administration & Governance, Dana Point Harbor, Human Resources, Information Technology, and the South Coast Air Quality Management District. 

My new Deputy Chief of Staff, James Dinwiddie.

Over the last several years on my staff, James has been instrumental in various major County projects, such as the revitalization of Dana Point Harbor via a Public/Private Partnership, the development of agile community serving applications, like myOCGov and, in addition to improvements at John Wayne Airport.

James holds a Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in Urban Affairs, and a BA in Political Science from California State University, Long Beach. Additionally, James is a CSAC Credentialed County Senior Executive.

It has been a pleasure to have James on my staff, and I'm grateful for the hard work he continues to do on a regular basis on behalf of Orange County and the 5th District. I know he will do a wonderful job in his new role.

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2020 Primary Election Voting Underway in OC

Learn about the benefits of Orange County’s transition to Vote Centers, such as being able to register to vote, cast an in-person ballot, obtain replacement ballots and more. 

They key benefits of the transition to Vote Centers include:

  • There will now be 188 fully staffed Vote Centers. Voters can choose to vote in-person at any location starting February 22, 2020.
  • Election Day now lasts 11 days. Voters voting in the March Presidential Primary election will be able to vote at any Orange County Vote Center anytime between February 22 and March 3, 2020 
  • Every voter will now receive a vote-by-mail ballot. Voters will be able to save time and vote at home with multiple options for returning their ballot. Ballots began mailing on February 3.
  • There will be 110 secure ballot drop box locations throughout Orange County. Voters will be able to deposit their ballot into a secure drop box between February 3 and March 3, 2020.

Click here for more information. To view a recent TV interview with myself and Orange County Registrar of Voter Neal Kelly, discussing Orange County’s transition to Vote Centers on Village Television in Laguna Woods, click here or on the image below.

Click the image above to view the TV interview.
Click the image above to enlarge.
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Passing Siding Project Construction Alert
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Improvements Coming to I-5 in South County

Today, nearly 360,000 motorists travel I-5 daily between SR-73 and El Toro Road. Transportation planners expect traffic volumes to grow 25 percent by 2045. To address this travel demand, OCTA and Caltrans are working together to implement the I-5 Widening project from SR-73 to El Toro Road. Construction will be done in three segments. Crews began work on the first segment from Oso Parkway to Alicia Parkway in 2019.

In March, construction will begin on the second segment, a 2.1-mile stretch between SR-73 and Oso Parkway that borders Mission Viejo, Laguna Hills, Aliso Viejo, and Laguna Niguel.

Improvements include adding one general purpose lane to increase capacity and reconstructing Avery Parkway to expand it from four to six lanes, increase bike lane width, install sidewalks on both sides of the street, and construct monument walls under the bridge featuring a pastoral ranch theme.

Other project improvements include new and improved merging lanes and the conversion of carpool lanes to continuous access to make it easier to enter and exit. For more information about the I-5 Widening Project, please visit here.

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OC Flex Microtransit Pilot Extended

OC Flex, an on-demand curb-to-curb service, will continue providing rides through October as part of a pilot project.

OC Flex has been operating since October 2018 in two areas, one in portions of Huntington Beach and Westminster, and the other in portions of Mission Viejo, Aliso Viejo and Laguna Niguel. Passengers can request rides via the OC Flex Mobile App or by phone.

In its first year of operation, OC Flex has increased ridership month over month and recorded nearly 37,000 boardings. Customer satisfaction is high, with 91 percent of riders surveyed saying they would recommend the service.

Based on OC Flex customer feedback, OCTA has expanded service areas and updated service hours. For a limited time, the OC Bus regular 30-Day pass has been added to free transfer options. These improvements go into effect February 9. Also, the group ride discount (50% off) has been extended to all day, every day.

For more information on OC Flex, visit here.

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Oso / Antonio Parkway Intersection Update
Click the image above to enlarge and
scroll down for more info or click here.
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Antonio Parkway Bridge Rehabilitation Project
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Working Wardrobes: Please Help Us Rebuild!

As reported in my newsletter last week, one of Orange County’s most valued nonprofits, Working Wardrobes, recently experienced a 4-alarm fire at their Irvine Headquarters. Working Wardrobes has helped countless people overcome difficult life challenges — such as alcohol and drug abuse, domestic violence, incarceration and homelessness — as well as find jobs by providing job training and suitable attire for interviews and long-term success.

Over the past 30 years, Working Wardrobes has helped 105,000 men, women, young adults, and veterans overcome difficult challenges to enter the workforce. No one was hurt or in the building at the time of the blaze. Approximately 100 firefighters were at the scene to battle the flames but all the contents in the building were ultimately lost.

The fire at Working Wardrobes is a devastating loss to the County, as well as the many people they provide services for. I personally have donated to the organization for many years.

We are blessed to live in a county where we all do our part to take care of one another. Goodwill OC has graciously offered space for Working Wardrobes to continue to provide services at their Santa Ana location while they look to rebuild. To that end, Working Wardrobes is asking for donations to help rebuild their headquarters. Every little bit helps!

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OC Public Libraries: 2020 Annual Report
To see the full report, click the image above.
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OCPL Brings Back “Fine Free Library Days”
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12th Annual OCFA Best and Bravest Awards

Last Friday, the 12th Annual Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) Best and Bravest Awards Dinner was held at the Irvine Marriott. Over 400 guests were in attendance to pay tribute to employees who have provided exemplary service during 2019. Congratulations to all of the honorees and award recipients!

To see a list of the top award winners announced at the ceremony, click here. To view a video of the ceremony, click here. To watch a video played during the event, click here. To see photos of the event, click here.

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Find Some Bunny to Love at OC Animal Care
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RSM: Join OCTA for a Free Guided Hike

Put your best foot forward in 2020 with a free guided tour of one of OCTA's protected properties Saturday, February 15 from 9 AM to 10 AM, providing an up-close experience of Wren's View Preserve, a 116-acre parcel located northwest of the City of Rancho Santa Margarita in Trabuco Canyon, and immediately north of O’Neill Regional Park and Trabuco Creek. 

The acquisition of this preserve joins together adjacent open space areas in the foothills while also limiting urban encroachment. Major mammals expected to use these corridors include mule deer, mountain lions, bobcats, coyotes and gray foxes. 

Several times a year, OCTA offers day hikes and equestrian excursions through some of the seven properties acquired as part of the Measure M Freeway Environmental Mitigation Program, a comprehensive plan that preserves and restores natural habitats and allows for expedited delivery of freeway projects. The properties are located in Trabuco Canyon, Brea, Silverado Canyon, and Laguna Beach. Together, they total more than 1,300 acres.

Space is limited. Participants must be 12 years and over and must sign a liability waiver. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. For more information and to register, click here.

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Mission Viejo: Youth Vaping Epidemic
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San Juan Capistrano: 5-Chamber Mega Mixer
Click the image above for more info.
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Aliso Viejo: "Always in Season" Free Cinema

Soka University in Aliso Viejo, along with Free Community Cinema and ITVS, is pleased to present "Always in Season" on Thursday, February 20 at 7 PM.

Always in Season, a documentary by Jacqueline Olive, features descendants of the victims and perpetrators of lynching, who are working together to heal a violent history. Blending observational footage with first-person testimonies and expert input, Always in Season examines the lingering impact of lynching and the link between this historic form of racial terrorism, as well as the racial violence that exists today. FREE admission. Panel discussion to follow. For more information, click here.

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Dana Point Harbor: February Coffee Chat

The Dana Point Civic Association is sponsoring the February Coffee Chat, featuring Jonny Westom of Visit Dana Point. The February Coffee Chat will be held on Friday, February 21 at 8:30 AM at The Coffee Importers in the Dana Point Harbor.  

Jonny will discuss the economic impact of tourism in Dana Point and all of Orange County. He will also talk about the re-branding strategy that has positioned Dana Point as a premier coastal destination for domestic and international travelers. Westom has over 14 years experience in destination marketing and management experience and serves on many travel industry-related boards and committees.  

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Mission Viejo: Tri-Chamber Mixer
Click the image above for more info.
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Dana Point: 49th Annual Festival of Whales
Click the image above for more info.
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Dana Point: Pet Project Foundation Event
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RSM: SMWD Water Festival 2020
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  • Attended the Aliso Viejo Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Installation & Gala to present commendations in honor of the the outgoing Board Members.
  • Participated in the Orange County Board of Supervisors meeting.
  • Participated as President of CSAC in our Board of Directors meeting, First 5 Association of California 2020 Policy Priorities meeting, and MHSA Working Group meeting.
With Aliso Viejo Mayor Mike Munzing and Councilman Bill Phillips at the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Installation & Gala.

L-R: With MNWD Vice President Duane Cave, Aliso Viejo Councilman Ross Chun, MNWD Vice President Brian Probolsky and Director Dick Fiore at the Chamber Installation & Gala.

Presenting a commendation to outgoing Aliso Viejo Chamber Board Member Heidi Stoops.
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography

With Aliso Viejo Chamber Executive Director Pamela Hoffman and Board President Jim Sidaris.
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography)  

Leading the CSAC Board of Directors meeting.

At the CSAC Board of Directors meeting.

Presenting a commendation to the CSAC Designated Service Award winner, CA State of Finance Director Keely Bosler (center).

At the CSAC MHSA Working Group meeting.
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  • Presented a proclamation in honor of the 25-year anniversary celebration for Dana Point Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 9934. More on this in next week's newsletter.
  • Presented a certificate of recognition in honor of the grand reopening of Bistro Provincia in Dana Point.
  • Presented certificates of recognition in honor of the Laguna Niguel Chamber of Commerce multi-member ribbon cutting ceremony for The Inside Coup, Chimmy 5 in 1 Languages Center, King Frosch Wines, and Pan Law Group, Inc.
  • Participated in the Mission Viejo Chamber of Commerce Community & Legislative Affairs meeting.
  • Attended the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting & Installation Dinner to present commendations the outgoing 2019 Chair Michael Fox, Dana Point Harbor Partners (Business of the Year), Mike Killebrew (Citizen of the Year), and Ryan Krause (Ambassador of the Year).
My Community Relations Advisor, Sergio Prince, presenting a proclamation to Commander Wayne Yost in honor of the 25-year anniversary celebration for Dana Point VFW Post 9934.

At the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting & Installation Dinner to present a commendation to Bryon Ward of Dana Point Harbor Partners (Business of the Year).
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography

Presenting a commendation to Mike Killebrew (Citizen of the Year).
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography

Presenting a commendation to Ryan Krause (Ambassador of the Year).
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography

With Dana Point Chamber of Commerce Executive Staff Member Katie McGann and Executive Director Vickie McMurchie, and outgoing 2019 Board Chair Michael Fox.
(Photo courtesy of Montgomery Photography

Presenting a certificate of recognition at the grand reopening of Bistro Provincia in Dana Point.
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Dana Point Mayor Richard Viczork installing the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce 2020 Board of Directors.

L-R: Dana Point Mayor Pro Tem Jamey Federico, Councilman Joe Muller, Commander Wayne Yost, Mayor Richard Viczorek, and Councilman Paul Wyatt at the VFW Post 9934 25-year anniversary celebration.
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For questions or comments regarding my E-Newsletter, please contact my office staff at (714) 834-3550 or email my Community Relations Advisor, Sergio Prince, at .
In This Issue
orange arrow THIS WEEK I
orange arrow MY STAFF
Doug Woodyard
Chief of Staff

James Dinwiddie
Deputy Chief of Staff

Sara May
Senior Policy Advisor

Yasie Goebel
Policy Advisor

Sergio Prince
Community Relations Advisor

Megan Dutra
Communications Advisor

Pauline Colvin
Executive Assistant

Rosemary Conteras
Staff Aide

Stay Updated!
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