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Toni Iseman: Eager to serve the city

When Toni Iseman ran for City Council four years ago, it was

against her better judgment.

“It was not my idea to run,” she said. “But it has been one of the

most significant things I have done in my lifetime and I am glad I


got my arm twisted.”

No one had to twist her arm this time.

“My four years on the council produced significant changes, but

there’s much more to do,” Iseman said.


She is proud of the success of the free summer shuttles, which

increased ridership by 90%, proving, she said, the viability of

peripheral parking at Act V, despite an increase in parking fees. She

strongly supports neighborhood compatibility.

Iseman fought for a Village Entrance plan that integrates the

corporation yard into the public amenities, after opposing the

Village Entrance Task Force recommendation to move the yard to ACT V.

“I have zealously protected ACT V for it most vital use -- keeping


cars out of our Downtown,” Iseman said.

Iseman, a counselor at Orange Coast College, shares her Woods Cove

home with Steve Miller and Bob the cat.

She signed the $30,000 campaign spending limit and had raised

$14,115 as of Sept. 21.

Village Laguna and the Laguna Beach Democratic Club endorsed




1. With the proposed construction of more than 1,000 parking

spaces three blocks from the Village Entrance to Third Street, what

can the city do to alleviate traffic problems in the area?

There is a study underway to address our traffic and circulation

issues. We won’t just add parking; we will study our circulation

issues and adjust accordingly. The additional parking will provide

spaces that could be used for the near 500 employees that work

Downtown. Many employees park in the metered areas in front of our

retail spaces. That’s not good business. Hopefully that would free

the metered spaces for residents and visitors to shop.

2. How do you feel about putting public funds into private

organizations, like the community clinic and senior center, vs. using

the money for infrastructure, particularly the sewer system?

Our recent focus on our decaying infrastructure has redirected our

city funds, but it also generated nearly $2,000,000 in matching

federal funds. Laguna needs to also support agencies that provide

service to our residents. It’s not an either or situation. Good

government addresses both.

3. How has the enmity between members of certain political and

community groups affected the city?

In recent years the evidence of the conflict has lessened. In

today’s world we don’t need that kind of animosity at home. As we

realize our goal is to keep our hometown in tact, and not a place to

be used for short-term profit by out of town developers, we had

better stick together.

4. What can the city do to help local merchants?

For starters, continue the free shuttle and extend service to

weekends year round. Encourage locals to shop Laguna. We need to

study our demographics and encourage merchants to recognize resident

needs in addition to the needs of our visitors.

5. What can the city do to preserve the village character?

Our Design Review Board and Planning Commission must remain

strong. The new guidelines for house design should lower expectations

for size, mass and scale. We must address our lax code enforcement.

It’s not fair to those that follow the rules.