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A List With Unclear Implications

Editor:

This letter was also addressed to the City Council.

With reference to agenda item #14, I am in general agreement with the intent of the proposal. However, I do have issues and concerns with the inclusion of anything to do with the “Historical Structure Inventory” lists. These lists, including the “Candidate Heritage Tree” lists, were originally meant to be nonbinding on property owners. The lists were meant to encourage property owners to register their homes and/or trees to preserve them and to obtain “incentives” for doing so. As agenda item #15 at your last Council meeting demonstrates, the nonbinding aspect of the lists has gone terribly wrong. By a 3 to 2 vote, the Council sided with common sense and fair play to overturn a Design Review Board decision, based on a 9-0 nonbinding recommendation from the Heritage Committee to require a partial preservation/restoration of the “yellow dog house” in South Laguna.

I respectfully request that the City Council have the Planning Commission also address the fact that many Laguna property owners do not actually know that their older structures/trees are on these “Candidate/ Inventory lists”. It is very clear from the “yellow dog house” debacle, that very few citizens in Laguna are aware of the down side of being placed involuntarily on these “lists”.

Tom Slattery, Laguna Beach

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