Letter: Felder Responds to Being Outed as a Republican

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OMG! Sam Goldstein outs me as a Republican! Not only a registered Republican, but one who has donated to Republican candidates over many years.

How does this compare to Sam Goldstein’s contributions to the Liberate Laguna political action committee and his efforts to obtain entitlements from the Laguna Beach city council to make money? Goldstein has the legal right to do this, however, the public should be aware of the facts.

Thankfully, after attacking me he confirms that it is true. In his letter he writes:
“Gene Felder attacked me again and several other residents for making political contributions to a local PAC. He claimed that my donations were to make ‘big developments easier by changing long-established city standards.’ His only proof: I secured land use entitlements to make the “E” Rated Historic Heisler Building ADA accessible.” That is I was correct when in my letter I noted “Sam Goldstein has secured land use entitlements to the Heisler Building including a rooftop deck that to be ADA accessible allowed an elevator exceeding the City’s 36-foot height limit.”

In my letter, I also noted “The Liberate Laguna 2018 financial disclosure statement details $152,000 of expenditures in getting Peter Blake and Sue Kempf elected to the city council. The top contributors were: Cindy Shopoff, Shopoff Realty Enterprises ($68,000), Michael and Leslie Ray, Sanderson/Ray Developers ($27,000), Mohammad Honarkar, 4G Wireless ($20,000), Samuel Goldstein, Radford Ventures ($20,000), and Chris Dornin, Dornin Investment ($10,000).” Astute letter readers will note that Goldstein did not refute this information. In addition, the Liberate Laguna 2020 financial disclosure statement details $102,000 of expenditures with the top contributors being Michael Ray $57,000, Sam Goldstein $28,000, and Cindy Shopoff $18,500.

So in the last two City elections their donations to the Liberate Laguna political action committee were Michael Ray $84,000, Cindy Shopoff $86,500, and Sam Goldstein $48,000 consisting of over 86% of the total raised.

In his letter Sam Goldstein writes: “Here’s another attack on me that Gene Felder wrote in StuNews March 9, 2021: “One wonders what vision and development plans Sam Goldstein has for Laguna Beach; in his testimony he described our beloved Laguna Beach as a ‘dying, decaying, totally fragmented city right now with most of our businesses closed.’ Yikes!’ Gene, I wonder what you have done with your life in Laguna?”

It is untrue when Goldstein says Laguna Beach is a “dying, decaying, totally fragmented city right now with most of our businesses closed”, well, at least hyperbolic.

Gene Felder, Laguna Beach

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