Letters to the Editor: Thursday, April 5, 2016

Dog owners abuse our beach; enforce ordinance

I have written to the council multiple times about this however, the situation continues.  Unfortunately, I don’t have photos but 4/5 days during the week, people have their dogs on the beach, both berm side and non-berm side of the pier.

The dogs are defecating on the beach which is disgusting, in my opinion.  While I love dogs, it’s the owners abusing our beautiful beach.

One way or another, either enforce the ordinance or dissolve it.  This is frustrating as there are many dog owners who abide by the rules but there are many who seem to believe the rules don’t apply to them.  The sanitation truck was on the berm side of the pier this morning and completely disregarded two adults, male and female, who had their two very large dogs out there, doing their business.

Again, it’s pretty simple: either enforce the rule or dissolve it.

And while we’re talking about enforcing rules/laws, I would suggest the police have motorcycle officers stationed at various busy intersections through old town in the morning; the city could collect thousands of dollars on people who run stop signs and almost hit pedestrians.

Very frustrated Seal Beach citizen….

Gail Courtney

Make Leisure World amphitheater equitable

This is reference to the amphitheater public area of Leisure World Seal Beach.

There are two dance areas that were moved 5+ years ago that are now located to the right and left of the stage area.  They are both behind the stage and speakers, such that the show cannot be seen or heard adequately from these areas.  Furthermore, to access these dance areas one must go up two steep inclines and over a high step.

After complaining to the management, the reason we were given for the change—both in the newspaper and over the loudspeakers—was because it is a fire hazard to dance in front of the stage area.

I proved, with a letter signed by Kevin Bass, the Chief Fire Inspector of Orange County, that it was not a fire hazard to dance in front of the stage area at the amphitheater.

I have been told, absent written documentation, that the step going to the dance area is “grandfathered” in and therefore acceptable.

I do not believe this to be true and would like to see supporting written documentation from them.  My understanding of the Americans with Disabilities Act is that such easily corrected obstacles cannot be grandfathered and must be removed and/or replaced with an acceptable alternative.

Residents who use wheelchairs or other devices for mobility who like to dance are not able to safely and independently access these areas for dancing.

Furthermore, if they did have help getting up to this area, they could not see the stage and the sound would be distorted.

This is not equitable to residents with mobility impairments, who represent a large percentage of residents within Leisure World.

Glenn Syrop

Leisure World

Seal Beach

An economic argument in favor of the state Values Act

I am in favor of the California Values Act for many reasons, but I will restrict this letter purely to the economic reasons.  California is the sixth largest economy in the world. (https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/12/california-foreign-policy-paradiplomacy-la-china/). We have strong and diverse industries-among them are technology,  manufacturing, agriculture, entertainment and films, and many more.  Our strength comes from the diversity of our people and cultures and what they bring to the table.

The technology sector, for example,  is made up of people from all over the world, people with new ideas for new products  and solutions.  We would not be at the forefront of this industry were it not for the contributions our immigrants have made and continue to make.

Our state is and has been a magnet for immigrants-this is a positive, not a negative- generations of immigrants have made our economy what it is.   Two obvious sectors of our economy-construction and agriculture,  are driven by our immigrants.   Some have been here their entire life and through no fault of their own do not have legal status.

Others came specifically to fill jobs that that no one else will or wants to do.  The statistics say that 9 out of 10 farmworkers are undocumented and most come from Mexico.

They do hard back breaking work, without benefits, and it is largely because of them that we are a major agricultural power.  In the last year farmers have become increasingly worried about a labor shortage (https://www.nbcnews.com/nightly-news/video/california-s-farms-face-serious-labor-shortage-1007177795804) as there are fewer farm workers because of the political climate in the US.

There is a small window for picking most crops,  if there is a shortage of labor, produce will go to waste and never go to market.  This will have major consequences for our food supply and the economy this year and for years to come if we continue on the present course of deporting the undocumented and underdocumented.

The majority of our construction workers, the laborers that actually prepare the materials and build the structures, are immigrants.  They are an integral part of the growth and prosperity of our state’s economy.  Many of these workers are under risk of deportation. If we lose even part of this workforce the construction sector will be severely affected in all parts of the state.  The service industry-restaurants, hotels, retail-employs a considerable number of immigrants and depends on them for daily operation.  The state’s economy is completely dependent on these jobs being done by immigrant workers, there is no “replacement” labor force waiting in the wings when these immigrants are sent away.

When I walk in Seal Beach I am cognizant of the gardeners, housekeepers, and caregivers employed by my neighbors.  The majority, again, are immigrants.  They do the work that others do not care to do.  I think if the immigrant population were to leave en masse today,  California would be paralyzed. We should recognize that our economy is inextricably and completely dependent on the work immigrants provide every single day.  The recent ruling by the OC Board of Supervisors and city of Los Alamitos to opt out of the Sanctuary law is wrong on so many levels, but again, I will stick to economics.  The county and cities opting out will be involved in costly lawsuits with the state of California.  The state will prevail under states rights.  Do we really have extra money to spend on a losing proposition? and why would we opt out?  so that we can help the federal government deport our hard working immigrants and hurt ourselves and our economy?  If you disagree with the Board of Supervisors ruling as I do, vote on June 5.  Our current representative on the OC Board,  Michelle Steel voted to opt out along with the other four on the board.  On June 5 vote her out.

Claudia Horvath

Keep Gum Grove wild

I agree with a few points in the proposed policy for Gum Grove park, but I strongly disagree with anything that may make it look too manicured and maintained. We have plenty of perfect little parks in So. Cal., but not a lot of places that one can go to get off the pavement and into the wildness and dirtiness of nature.

Gum Grove provides just that for the residents of Seal Beach.

I agree with cleaning up some of the fallen trees and removing the dry brush that may be a fire danger, but that is it.

The trails are marked fine. The entrances are more than adequate.

Gum Grove is its own thriving ecosystem already. New growth of native plants occur naturally as the trees and other plants drop their seedlings and birds provide new seeds as well. Gum Grove is a place where kids go to build a tree swing, or chase lizards, run a muck and get skinned knees.

Adults can enjoy the serenity of Gum Grove and take in all the sounds of nature.

If humans go in and “Enhance the visual design and aesthetics experience in the park,” I believe it will ruin the current charm of Gum Grove. PLEASE KEEP GUM GROVE WILD!

Signed, Warrior for Nature,

Chani Demello

Take a look at the thing that makes me crazy

If you appreciate truly fine art you should visit the Mary Wilson Library and take a look at the oil painting on the far wall of the library proper.

This art was painted by Walter J. Watson (Born 1879) who worked mostly in England and Scotland and this piece too was done in Scotland in 1909.

It is more than likely this is the finest art in Seal Beach.

What makes me crazy is that it is not being properly cared for and it is dying a slow death.

I have pointed this out to those in charge at the library.

I have provided them with contact information for Susan Brown, a nationally acclaimed fine art restorer, based in Laguna Beach.

I have offered to purchase the piece at fair market value (no small amount of money) with no positive response to any of the above over the past three years.Fine art is a treasure that needs to be protected and cared for, not left to those who do not understand or respect it.

In my opinion, it is time to grab the pitchforks, lite the torches and storm the castle (library). Take some time and go look. This art is absolutely breathtaking. My offer to purchase still stands.


Tim Kraushaar