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Initiative Battle Waged in Spending

In the election season’s final weeks, opponents and proponents of Laguna Beach’s ballot initiative Measure CC have finally opened their checkbooks, according to campaign disclosure statements filed with the city clerk’s office.

A $20,000 infusion from Getty Oil heiress Anne G. Earhart, of Corona del Mar, helped prop up the treasury of the Committee for Measure CC, which reported receiving $34,533 in contributions through Oct. 20, and spending all but $8,476, according to disclosure reports.

A $3,000 loan from Frank Ricchiazzi, a Laguna Beach resident and founding member of the Log Cabin Republicans, a gay and lesbian Republican grassroots group, helped fatten the treasury of the Laguna Beach Taxpayers Assoc., the measure’s most vocal opponent.

If approved by two-thirds of voters on the Nov. 6 ballot, Measure CC would impose a $120 a year parcel tax on Laguna Beach landowners for the next 20 years to fund open-space purchases of large-size parcels of private land zoned for residential use.

An environmental activist, Earhart has contributed to other local causes. In February 2011, the Indy reported that the Laguna Beach-based Marisla Foundation that she founded, which supports environmental causes as well as physical, mental, and financial health for women, contributed $3 million along with four other non-profits to underwrite hearings that supported the establishment of marine sanctuaries in Laguna and elsewhere along California’s coast.

Others substantial Measure CC contributions include $1,000 donations from local developer and Indy columnist Michael Ray as well as Gary and Betsy Jenkins, a pediatrician and school board member, respectively.

Village Laguna and the South Laguna Civic Association also contributed $1,000 and $784, respectively, to the committee, reports show. Several Village Laguna board members, including City Council incumbent Verna Rollinger, Tom and Ginger Osborne, and Charlotte Masarik, also contributed directly as well. Other contributors included filmmaker Greg MacGillivray, Planning Commissioner Norm Grossman, school board incumbent Bill Landsiedel and City Council member Toni Iseman.

Village Laguna reported spending an additional $6,800 on unspecified election expenses, presumably to support the initiative as well as Rollinger, in the period through Oct. 20.

With fewer resources, the Taxpayers Assoc. reported spending $7,200 through the Oct. 20 period. Its largest contributors, at $500 each, identify themselves as involved in real estate, Kent Russell of Laguna Beach and Roberta Cox of Newport Beach.

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