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Category: Front Page

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Madison Leads in Campaign Donations

Madison Leads in Campaign Donations

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy Restaurant owner Jon Madison so far leads the pack of Laguna Beach City Council candidates with $45,923 in campaign cash as of July 31. Planning commission member Robert Zur Schmiede comes in second with $27,554, followed by incumbent Kelly Boyd at $16,116, and Michele Hall, who reported $2,109 in […]

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Jean Paul Gets in a Final Word: Goodbye

Jean Paul Gets in a Final Word: Goodbye

Even before its doors opened, a sizeable crowd lined up outside Jean Paul’s Goodies in North Laguna last Saturday, Aug. 9, mourning the final hours of a Laguna Beach institution and commiserating over an alternate source of caffeine and camaraderie. After 35 years and several competitors, Jean Paul Leguy turned in the key to the […]

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New Chief Climbs Aboard at Height of Fire Season

New Chief Climbs Aboard at Height of Fire Season

Edward Valdez stepped into the position of Laguna Beach fire division chief and fire marshal this week, a post vacant since December when Dan Stefano left to become chief of the Costa Mesa Fire Department. The responsibilities of a fire division chief include enforcing the California Fire Code and overseeing inspections of every business in […]

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Taking the Less-Traveled Academic Road

Taking the Less-Traveled Academic Road

By Rita Robinson | LB Indy Last summer, Dean Hodes went with his uncle, a medical doctor in Ethiopia, on his rounds at Mother Teresa’s Orphanage for destitute children in Addis Ababa, the African country’s capital city. The young Hodes fed, played with and started teaching “Simon Says” to a few 7- and 8-year-old blind […]

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Police Chief To Retire

Police Chief To Retire

By Andrea Adelson | LB Indy   Police Chief Paul Workman, 60, retires this month after five years in the department’s top job and a 38-year police career devoted solely to Laguna Beach. “As a young man, I could have never imagined that I would have had the opportunities that Laguna Beach provided me,” said […]

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Pay Parking Ends Earlier for Sawdust Patrons

Pay Parking Ends Earlier for Sawdust Patrons

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy Sympathetic to pleas from Sawdust Art Festival board members and exhibitors, the City Council Tuesday agreed to make an exception for pay parking spots on the festival’s frontage road, reversing a weeks-old policy change that extended meter hours until 9 p.m., two hours past the traditional cutoff time. Meters […]

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Council Approves Festival Facelift

Council Approves Festival Facelift

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy If all goes according to plan, the Festival of Arts will open their 2015 season with a brand new look, thanks to the City Council’s unanimous approval Tuesday of permits for proposed renovations to the public park. Constructed of plywood and foam 14 years ago under a temporary building […]

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Trio of Lawsuits Resolve in Laguna’s Favor

Trio of Lawsuits Resolve in Laguna’s Favor

By Andrea Adelson | LB Indy Attorneys for the city of Laguna Beach won victories in three separate lawsuits, one of which exposed the city to as much as $100 million in damages, City Attorney Phil Kohn said Wednesday. In that case, a federal appeals court upheld a lower court decision, which refused to certify […]

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Fish Flourish in Warm Coastal Waters

Fish Flourish in Warm Coastal Waters

By Rita Robinson | LB Indy Divers, snorkelers and recreational fishing enthusiasts alike are reporting increasing numbers of fish off the local coastline. This summer’s catch of sport fish – yellowtail, yellowfin and bluefin tunas as well as dorado – has not been seen since 1997, said Donna Kalez, general manager of Dana Wharf Sportfishing […]

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Iseman Is Ready to Keep Serving

Iseman Is Ready to Keep Serving

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy Toni Iseman taught junior high and high school classes for 12 years before switching from teaching to counseling and discovering a preference for working with students one-on-one. That penchant now informs her approach as an elected member of the Laguna Beach City Council. “I’m always concerned about the individual,” […]

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Coastal Commission Halts Ranch Remodel

Coastal Commission Halts Ranch Remodel

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy The California Coastal Commission effectively lodged a stick in the wheels of progress for the makeover of the 84-acre Ranch in Aliso Canyon last week. A letter to co-owner Mark Christy informed him he risks enforcement action if ongoing work on the property doesn’t cease until the Coastal Commission […]

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Crane Rescue Reveals Another Fissure

Crane Rescue Reveals Another Fissure

By Andrea Adelson | LB Indy Residents of three hillside Laguna Beach streets could not leave their homes with ease last Saturday while a small army of trucks maneuvered on the narrow lanes to right a 48-ton crane that had overturned and damaged a house. While the cause of the mishap continues to be investigated […]

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Rooftop Bar Still on Ice

Rooftop Bar Still on Ice

By Randy Kraft, Special to the Independent Local resident Sam Goldstein will require more patience to learn if his petition for a rooftop deck on the Heisler Building can proceed. Last week, the Planning Commission put off resolving the matter, granting a continuance until Sept. 10, rather than deny the request entirely as recommended by […]

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Conservation Stalls Deeper Water Cutbacks

Conservation Stalls Deeper Water Cutbacks

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy Thanks to the conservation policies of the two water districts supplying Laguna Beach, residents may not feel as keenly the impact of recently mandated statewide curbs on outdoor water use. Prompted by dire drought conditions, the state Water Resources Control Board last week adopted several emergency water-saving regulations, setting […]

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Passionate Pleas Preserve Historic Building

Passionate Pleas Preserve Historic Building

By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy Residents overwhelmingly supported the preservation of Laguna’s historic sewer digester building last week during a workshop on the proposed village entrance at the corner of Forest Avenue and Laguna Canyon Road. The City Council wanted public input on four issues that underpin the direction of improvements for the area […]