I was a “lucky” respondent to a telephone poll this past week all about things in Laguna. When I finished answering the pollsters questions it struck me that over the past several years the council has wallowed around in a sea of indecision like a ship without a rudder or planned destination. The same issues come up again and again.
We have spent money on all kinds of ultimately worthless surveys. This includes one called Vision Laguna, which involved months of public meetings and public input to compile a report to set forth what the local citizenry wanted Laguna to be like in 20 or 25 years. This report must now reside in the bottom drawer of some filing cabinet somewhere at City Hall because we don’t seem to be on any course to achieve what we locals wanted for Laguna’s future.
We held a contest and awarded a sizable cash prize to the architectural firm that came up with the best conceptual design for our Village Entrance. The check for the winning design prize was cashed long ago and the design must now reside along side the Vision Laguna report. What’s the direction we are to now go with this project? Can it be scaled down to something we can afford in today’s economy?
Traffic was a problem here eons ago. It worsens almost daily in south county. The situation will soon approach impossible. Is Laguna Canyon Road to be widened to make matters even worse in downtown? Is there a plan to accommodate the influx of traffic?
We had a plan for a skateboard park in the canyon, but that never came to be. Now the cry is that we need a skateboard park. Is it something we can afford? Can private enterprise undertake the task without city involvement?
We established a safe haven for the homeless, long a problem in Laguna. Now, some voices are saying we need to expend the homeless shelter. Are we to become the “home of the homeless” allowing our neighbors to continue to dump their homeless on us? How much is expected of our town?
One can’t help but wonder if anyone has really been at the helm at City Hall because the same old issues seem to come up over and over again. We need our council to stop drifting around with no set course. Tough economic times are sure to continue for years and we need to come to grips with tough issues and not postpone them. Our council must be practical in what really can be accomplished with our own local resources.
Don Knapp, Laguna Beach