By Toni Iseman
Dear Billy. You’re a great writer. We have many gifted columnists in town, but you bring a different angle.
I haven’t responded to your misinformation lately. But facts matter. Truth matters. So today I must reply.
It’s one thing for you to be confused, but it’s not right to confuse your readers.
A few of your myths:
Traffic on Coast Highway will improve by cutting down to two lanes: Were you in town for the three-month Caltrans closure? Two lanes? How did that work out?
Roundabouts on Glenneyre for bike safety: Roundabouts take more area than is available anywhere on Glenneyre. Most importantly, pedestrian safety would be compromised.
Remove parking on Coast Highway for bike lanes: Did you ask the merchants who rely on parking for their customers? We owe allegiance to our small business owners.
Suggesting that the Greeter be at the Greeter’s Corner makes sense. Eiler Larsen stood at a safe location. He waved his long arms and bellowed “hello” for those lucky enough to drive by at the right time. My suggestion was not to malign Michael. Perhaps you haven’t seen the near misses at the Sapphire corner. Safety is the issue.
Anti-fun crusader No. 1. Council Nanny, Toni Iseman. Killjoy of Laguna.
Come on, Billy. You’re creating a strawman here. This isn’t about fun. This is about public safety—which is a primary concern of mine.
Last Friday, I spoke with a friend who brought up a personal concern. His 14-year old son has an E-Bike—as so many teenagers in town have. Parents are aware of the dangers of these high-powered bikes; they worry and want help to make things safer for our kids. I believe your business rents out E-bikes, so you must be aware of the concerns yourself.
Council receives many emails from worried residents. Their concern is that today’s near-misses will be tomorrow’s fatalities. Do you consider them “Nannies” or “Killjoys” as well? But significantly, do you honestly believe that my responsibility as a Councilperson is “fun” over public safety? I am thankful our police department is working on ways to make E-Bikes less dangerous.
Isn’t Laguna better off because we have Rules to live by?
Cigarettes: Do you miss our sidewalks littered with cigarette butts? Do you remember finding the perfect spot at the beach and then someone nearby lights up?
Vaping: Laguna Beach High School students came to a Council meeting to voice concerns because vaping became so popular on campus. Leave it to Big Tobacco to try to hook another generation.
Mountain bikes aren’t a problem but mountain bikers who overrun hikers on trails are. It has happened. Now we have the help of cyclers who ask other bikers to police themselves.
Motorcycles: Already loud vehicles are illegally modified. They roar through town while visitors and residents brace themselves for the assault. Residents celebrate when bikers are held to our decibel rules.
Laguna’s future is at stake. A pleasant and safe Coastal town or your Fun Zone?