Many of us in town received the latest mailer from Christoph/Iseman, a.k.a. Village Laguna. The slogan reads, “We Know Our Town Best.” I wasn’t sure what that meant, but I did have a chance to look up some information on the city’s website.
On this site one can find legal financial documents required to be filed by candidates who are running for public office. These documents must list the names of donors to the various candidates. What surprised me the most, or maybe it didn’t, the names of folks who coincidentally have given to Ann Christoph and/or Toni Iseman. Many of the names I recognized from various community committees, including Heritage Committee – by the way there were no new members placed in this committee this go around in spring. Is that how one gets on these committees – donate? Earlier this year I watched the process in city hall as “new” members were added to vacant seats. Toni Iseman, Rob Zur Schmiede and I believe one other council member were in charge – however, Toni pretty much ran the meeting. There was little exchange done between many of the candidates, especially those who were not selected, and many walked away disappointed. I was disappointed, as I had written several letters to encourage new folks to try to get on these committees and try to add new life to them. It seems as though some folks have made a career out of being on these committees, especially Village Laguna members.
No wonder there is such a division in this town – many of us are fed up with the “same players playing the same tune” in this town.
Some of these donors are writing letters to the editors and you can see now why—they are backing Christoph/Iseman. I sincerely hope that those who tried to crack the code to get into some of these committees will try again. I hope that voters will see through this veil of “We know this Town Best.” I suspect that first thing on the agenda if they get into office – change ordinances about views, trees (notice nobody is saying the word eucalyptus in this campaign) the word heritage, which can include anything/everything they want – and they now support undergrounding, which they didn’t a few months ago. Perhaps some donors will be on project costing millions because “we know best.”
Be careful who you vote for – don’t go down that slippery slope to la la land.
Ganka Brown, Laguna Beach
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