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CITYSCAPE ROUNDUP:Novel addresses today’s issues

The subject of illegal immigration will be keynoted at a discussion of T.C. Boyle’s “The Tortilla Curtain” planned for 7 p.m., Sunday, March 4 at Laguna Presbyterian Church, 415 Forest Ave., Laguna Beach.

Senior Pastor Jerry Tankersley, a political science major as an undergraduate, will talk about this account of two Southern California families — an illegal immigrant homeless couple, and a well-to-do family — who live in close proximity to each other in the hills above Los Angeles. Though strangers, their lives intertwine in the book, raising a network of issues.

“We live in a perplexing community where issues of love, truth, peace, and justice that Jesus preached, and which the church seeks to live out, strike at the very heart of our human hunger and thirst,” Rev. Tankersley said of the book’s topic.

Boyle will appear in person at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 13 at the church to read and discuss the work.

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Latitude 33, 311 Ocean Ave., Laguna Beach, has issued an invitation to the community of Laguna Beach to join together in reading this book and discussing it as part of a new “Laguna on the Same Page” program. The store is selling the book at a 20% discount.

Everyone is welcome at the events, and admission is free. For more information, contact the church office at (949) 494-7555.

Property transfer decline concerns officials

City officials have noticed a marked reduction in the number of real property reports issued, signaling fewer properties changing hands, City Manager Ken Frank announced Jan. 16.

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“There is a strong likelihood that the increase in property taxes will probably be less this coming year than it has been in the past few years,” Frank said.

In 2002, 2003 and 2004 the city issued about 650 real property reports each year. In 2005, the number dropped to 514 and in 2006 it dropped to 424.

“Not only is our revenue from real property reports down, but we will get less money in property transfer taxes and then less money in property tax reassessments,” Frank stated.

Repaving project funded by Council

The Laguna Beach City Council approved funding for a major street rehabilitation project on Tuesday.

A $3,765,458 contract was awarded to Excel Paving Co. for the construction of the Sleepy Hollow Lane to Nyes Place and the Cress Street to Nyes Place alley rehabilitation projects and the Victoria sewer lift stations I and II back-up power projects.

A $55,000 contract was awarded to CBM Consulting for construction administrative services for the projects.

“This is one of the largest projects we have done,” Public Works Director Steve May said.

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Work is scheduled to begin March 19 and be completed by June 15. The contract included a $2,500 a day incentive for early completion and a $2,500 penalty for every day the project runs over the deadline. The city also has the prerogative to stop the project if it goes past June 15.

Village Laguna wants ‘green’ marchers

Village Laguna is inviting members and nonmembers to march with the group in the 41st Laguna Beach Patriot’s Day Parade on Saturday, March 3.

Those who want to march should meet the group at 10:30 a.m. at the Laguna Beach High School parking lot, space 70.

In support of the City Council’s unanimous decision to sign the U.S. Mayors’ Climate Protection Agreement, Village Laguna is focusing on a “green” theme, and invites participation in any way that does not pollute: bicycling, roller skating, walking, using a street-legal golf cart, Segway, non-powered scooters — but no skateboards are allowed.

The group will hold a membership meeting at 7 p.m. Monday at Wells Fargo Community Room. Tom Osborne, of the city’s Environmental Committee, will report on what other cities are doing to slow global warming, and lead a discussion on how to implement the agreement in Laguna. Also, signs for the entry in the Patriots’ Day Parade will be made, with poster board and art supplies available.

For more information, contact: Michael Hoag at (949) 494-5960.

Assistance League seeks donations for thrift shop

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The Assistance League’s Turnabout Thrift Shop welcomes donations of “gently used” clothing, collectibles, housewares, linens, books, CDs, holiday items, etc.

A charitable tax write-off slip for upcoming April taxes will be provided. All proceeds are directed through various programs back into the community.

The shop is located at 526 Glenneyre Street. For more information, call (949) 494-5977.

Conservancy hosts Irvine mayor on climate change

Irvine Mayor Beth Krom will be the special guest at the Laguna Canyon Conservancy dinner meeting, set for Monday, March 5 at Tivoli Terrace, on the Festival of Arts Grounds, 650 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach.

Krom, a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ Council on Climate Change, will give an update on global warming developments at the recent U.S. Conference of Mayors annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

On Feb. 6 the Laguna Beach City Council adopted an agreement supporting the Conference of U.S. Mayors’ efforts to reduce global warming.

Krom will explain how Irvine has implemented the climate change agreement and there will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Laguna Canyon Conservancy dinner meetings are open to the public. No-host bar opens at 6 p.m. and dinner is served around 6:40 p.m.

Dinner tickets are $10 for members and $15 for nonmembers and may be paid at the door with prior reservations. Membership is $10 per person, per calendar year.

The group is now accepting new memberships and renewals, which will be good through Dec. 31.

To save time standing in line, you may make your check out to LCC prior to arriving.

To reserve seats, call Ed Drollinger at (949) 494-6465. Leave your name, phone number, and number of reservations, and spell your name and the names of others on your list, for name tags.


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