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Briefly In the News

Bluebird restoration cost $34 million

The audit of the Bluebird Canyon restoration came out about as City Manager Ken Frank had predicted.

Total expenses are about $34 million, of which the auditor disallowed $1 million, pretty much what was expected.

The city still does not have the final word from the state to complete closure of the project, expected at the latest by the start of the next fiscal year.

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“It turned out very well for us, as far as I am concerned,” Frank said at the Sept. 1 council meeting.

Frank said about half of the $1 million was spent on work on private property, such as removing debris, in order to move ahead on the restoration.

“We had to get it cleared, but [the auditor’s] position was that we shouldn’t have done work on private property,” Frank said.

The city was also advised to use an administrative grant for some expenses that had been billed for Recovery Coordinator Robert Burnham.

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Disallowed expenditures will be covered by the temporary half-cent tax approved by the voters, since taken off the books. The remainder of the taxes will seed a disaster fund as promised by the council.

Estate planning meetings start today

The free “It’s Your Estate” workshop series will be from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Fridays, today through Oct. 30, at the new Susi Q Senior Center, Community Room.

Focusing on a different topic each week, the sessions are moderated by Peter C. Kote, chairman of the Laguna Canyon Foundation’s Estate Planning and Gifts Committee. Sponsors include Laguna Playhouse, KOCE-TV and St. Joseph Hospital Foundation.

Workshop participants will not be approached to make charitable contributions or purchase financial products, and speakers and presenters will not receive their contact information.

For reservations, call Guine at (949) 497-8324.

City’s housing panel has five openings

The City Council is accepting applications to serve on the city’s Housing and Human Services Committee. The committee consists of seven members who serve two-year terms. The terms of five members expire on Oct. 31.

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The Housing and Human Services Committee provides input to the council regarding affordable housing, as well as housing opportunities for all segments of the community.

The committee is familiar with the city’s Housing Element of the General Plan and annually reviews the progress of its policies and programs. Human services, including but not limited to, services for senior citizens and disabled community members, is also a focus of the committee.

Applications are available at the city clerk’s office or www.lagunabeachcity.net.

The application must be filed with the city clerk by 5 p.m. Sept. 29. Applicants will be interviewed by the City Council at 6 p.m. Oct. 6, Council Chambers, 505 Forest Ave.



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