LAGUNA HILLS : Cityhood Backers Asked for Fund Data

Proponents of a measure to create Orange County's 30th city must provide additional proof that the proposed eight-square-mile city of Laguna Hills will be financially secure before the issue can go before the voters, the chairman of the Local Agency Formation Commission said Wednesday.

During an afternoon hearing, leaders of the pro-cityhood movement were told to provide further financial information by a June 20 hearing.

After that hearing, LAFCO will decide whether to place the issue on the ballot. Leaders of Citizens to Save Laguna Hills are hoping that a ballot measure will be ready for the November election.

"Our intention is to be able to look at our community and meet our needs as a city," said Randy Bressette, treasurer of the pro-cityhood organization.

He said he would provide projections for the next five to seven years at the June 20 meeting.

Commission members questioned the Laguna Hills group about plans to retain a variety of county services, including fire and police protection, if a city is established.

Don R. Roth, a county supervisor and LAFCO member, said the county is financially strapped and may have to reconsider providing services to incorporated cities.

The June 20 meeting will be the last shot at getting the measure on the Nov. 6 ballot. If a vote is delayed again, the measure would have to wait until the March ballot, LAFCO executive director James Colangelo said.

Only one person, Dale White, spoke against cityhood. White said the information provided by the pro-cityhood group overstates the benefits of incorporation.

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