SEAL BEACH : City Declines to Alter Archeological Group

Problems among Archeological Committee members are being solved, according to city officials who refused this week to consider removing an activist member from the citizens' advisory group.

The 10-member committee was formed in August, 1992, after resident Moira Hahn raised concerns about the preservation of Native American burial grounds on Hellman Ranch property, where the Mola Development Co. was proposing a large residential project. Representatives of the Gabrielino tribe also raised an alarm. The City Council subsequently formed the committee with Hahn as a member to assess archeological information about potential development sites.

Councilman William J. Doane on Monday night questioned the "activism" of Hahn, asking council members to consider removing her from the committee. Doane said her independent actions in seeking out archeological sites on her own time has created "internal differences" on the committee and that threatens the effectiveness of the group.

But City Manager Jerry L. Bankston said it is normal for a committee to go through a growth period. He said the group "has begun to coalesce."

"The committee has been working very effectively," Bankston said.

Seal Beach Mayor George Brown agreed.

"My feeling is, we have a good committee," Brown said. "Let's give them a chance."

Hahn said she believes she was targeted for criticism by a single committee member.

"I never thought there was a problem with the committee," Hahn said. "This is all something that's come up in the last two weeks."

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