Mailbag: We need more dietitians like Hartshorne

Re: "A Tasteful Display," Coastline Pilot, Nov. 8.

Bravo Megan Hartshorne, registered dietitian and Laguna Beach Unified School District nutrition consultant.

From one dietitian to another, I am so happy and excited to see her in our school district exposing our children to The Harvest of the Month events.

The Comice pears you served the children during recess at Top of the World Elementary School looked delicious. And I am glad people are learning about jicama. It's a vegetable to know.

How lucky we are in Laguna Beach to have this woman. I wish every single school in America had a dietitian on staff doing this type of work for children.

Melanie R. Silverman

Laguna Beach

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With vote against structure, Laguna wins

The core issue with the massive Village Entrance Project was resolved at the recent City Council workshop. We the People, the group organized in opposition to the Village Entrance parking structure proposal, is gratified that the council adopted our ballot position and rescinded the multistory parking garage.

Thus, with only the four City Council members' vote we (Laguna) won. Upon final city adoption, We The People shall formally disband and celebrate that our seaside community will return to some political tranquility.

We are confident the "new"' Village Entrance will reflect both taxpayer prudence and beauty. Thanks for the interest in the ballot petition.

Paul Merritt

Laguna Beach

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Some people had chance to vote

I have a couple of observations about Tuesday night's Village Entrance meeting.  

First, the opponents got something even better for themselves, something denied the rest of the 20,000 residents of Laguna Beach. Ultimately, the group of about 200 got to vote on the project's fate.  

When Mayor Pro tem Elizabeth Pearson reported that she had been told by proponents that they weren't speaking up because of intimidation by opponents, she was booed.

Susan Elliott

Laguna Beach

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'Thrilled' by democracy in action

I am thrilled to share that my wife, Chris, and I watched democracy work at the Laguna Beach City Council workshop Tuesday. All sides deserve to be applauded.

John Selecky

Laguna Beach

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It's time to realistically prioritize

I attended a portion of the City Council special meeting on the Village Entrance Project.  It was obvious the city heard the concerns of the citizens and spent a lot of time and money preparing for this meeting. 

It was well organized and the council chambers were filled to overflowing with residents interested in putting forth their ideas about what the city should do. Two things very quickly became apparent, the first being that the majority of those attending did not want a parking structure and did not want to see the city go into debt building a Village Entrance. 

The second is that with countless ideas being presented, it is critical that the goals be prioritized since it is not possible to incorporate most of them. 

For me, and apparently for a lot of others, the priority is to minimize costs and have no indebtedness or tax increases. The second priority is to retain and hopefully improve the number of parking spaces. 

My third priority is that any planned changes do not result in even temporarily reducing the number of current spaces while whatever improvements are being created.

The fourth priority is to minimize any additional or improved walkway in size, cost and landscaping — a sidewalk already exists between the highway and the main parking lot. A low-cost attractive hedge along the perimeter of the parking area should suffice for appearances without eliminating existing parking spaces. 

Those pushing for a major heavily landscaped walkway should know that it will seldom be used and could become very dangerous for a multitude of reasons, even if well lit. 

City representatives and some other folks were concerned about the old sewer plant pumping station's odors and tearing down some heavily used city structures.

The city cannot please everyone, and that is why common-sense prioritization of goals is needed and should be based on maximizing functions and reducing costs.  

Someone emphasized that the Village Entrance is just that, an entrance that people pass through to get home or to visit the town and beaches. In summary, the best thing we can do for residents and visitorsis to change that six miles of two lanes of congestion into four lanes of safe unstressful travel.

Dave Connell

Laguna Beach

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