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Village Matters

My brother Bill sends me inspirational notes along with his frequent reports about the progress of his wife Val’s cancer treatments. This one struck home. “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.” 2...

Village Matters

Keepers of the Flame Fall is just barely beginning but the campaign season is fully underway. Laguna Beach’s city council race promises to be not only controversial, but intriguing and very important for the future of our city. Seven candidates are running for three positions on...

Public Funds Should Not Underwrite Private Use

Editor, As pointed out by one of your alert readers, in my recent Indy commentary (“Collision Over Preservation and Property Rights,” June 19) I incorrectly criticized the City Council for using “tax dollars” to pay for a limited use public garden in South Laguna.  Since the...

Heritage Protections Keep Town Character Intact

Editor, I am taken aback by the angry tone of Howard Hill’s article in the June 19 Independent.  “Collision Over Preservation and Property Rights.” As a person who faithfully restored a 1922 historical cottage, I would expect his values to be more in line with...

Breathe in, Breathe out

“Homeowners association” are words that bring to mind frustrating meetings, uninformed opinions leading groups astray, enforcement of the covenants, conditions and restrictions as well as the pet peeves of board members, snippy and put-upon hired managers. There is often a...

Where does asparagus come from?

Not quite so hard to answer as the question about babies, but it was surprising how many of the adults at our recent South Laguna Community Garden workshop were amazed when we handed them an asparagus spear and said we had just cut it.  “From where?”  “It’s a sprout that grows...

Signs of Discord

“If we all speak softly, everyone can be heard.”  Besides being good advice for democracy and human relations in general, this phrase from former mayor Dan Kenney was specifically applied to signs, the issue he focused on during his terms on the city council, 1982-1990. Kenney...

Column Captured CLC

Editor, I really appreciated Ann Christoph’s article, “Potential Nourished With Kindness” in last week’s Independent (Letters, Jan. 31). Thank you! She warmly captured key aspects of the essence of CLC. Laia Hansen, Laguna Beach  

Economic Upturn

  Dateline Laguna Beach: On Monday, Jan. 13, as the South Laguna Civic Association board went over the agenda of proposed nearby projects, President Bill Rihn announced, “The 2008 great recession is officially over!”  The Obama administration will be notified immediately....

Village Matters: A Message From the Sky

It was the day after the 1993 fire. There were fragments blowing in the wind. Half burned pieces of paper, part of someone’s life, fluttered down like sooty snowflakes.  In the parking lot behind my office, I picked up one of them. There it said, “Reason” in large type. It was...

Village Matters: Landscape of Legend

We could trace the development of the town through the eyes of Laguna’s plein air painters, Kleitsch adding color, Hinkle subduing the landscape with white and black.  Still the landscape was predominant as the buildings were fitted in and plantings made the cottages home. These...

Village Matters: Urban Messiah

At last week’s hearing about the village entrance there were repeated calls for hiring an urban designer.  Someone who can lead us out of the morass of our own lack of consensus.  Someone from somewhere else who has designed award-winning complexes all over the world.  An urban...

Village Matters: Thoughtful slow down

  Feb. 13, 1953 a Laguna Beach police officer, Gordon G. French, was shot in the line of duty and died en route to the Santa Ana Hospital. This tragic, presumably preventable, death was the catalyst for building South Coast Community Hospital.  The community formed a...

Village Matters: Not only good, but exceptional

Saving open space in Laguna with Measure CC is not only a good idea, it shows exceptional leadership, not only here in town, but statewide. “Why don’t people get involved? There is so much they can do if they would only take some initiative!”  This is the refrain I heard in...

Village Matters: Harvesting an Unexpected Crop

It’s been three years now since we started the South Laguna Community Garden.  The project has grown from what could have been just a little neighborhood improvement project to a focus of community activity, creating surprising benefits. On Aug. 15, 200, we met to clean the...