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By Mayor Pro-Tem Paul Wyatt

When I decided to run for Dana Point City Council, one of my campaign promises was to give a voice to the residents; to be their representative to city government. Accomplishing this goal requires great two-way communications with a broad cross-section of the residents. As I approach six months in office, I’m learning that keeping this promise is more difficult than expected. I’ve had many discussions with my fellow council members and with city staff where decisions could have benefited by a better understanding of the residents’ priorities.

The Institute for Local Government encourages cities to move from community communications to community engagement; to effectively involve the community in priorities and policies. Online technologies can allow residents to provide input at their convenience and make it possible to reach diverse audiences. A broader audience provides a broader perspective that better represent the larger community. A small number of residents are very involved in city government, they attend Council meetings or watch them online, speak to or email the Councilmembers and provide feedback. These interactions, while helpful and appreciated, provide a very limited perspective that we in government must work to broaden.

As the city of Dana Point enters Fiscal Year 2018 on July 1, the City Council has directed the city staff to initiate a priority-based budgeting process. A key input to this is a poll of the residents. It is the intent of the city to repeat this poll every two years so priorities can be adjusted at each budget cycle. For this to be as effective as possible the polls need to reach all residents and the residents need to believe that participating in the polls is worthwhile. This is one tool that the city hopes will result in a sustained engagement with its residents.

Community engagement relies on and promotes better informed participants. Traditionally cities have relied on the news media for their communication with residents and today this is still largely true. City web sites contain event information and meeting minutes for those specifically seeking this information but do not publish information to a broad audience. The Western Cities Magazine, June 2017 article titled “10 Changes Shaping Local Government Communications,” states that cities can “no longer rely on the media to interpret and distribute our organization’s news and perspectives.” Technology now provides cities, and everyone else, direct, unfiltered, immediate access to their audiences. But tools and access only provide the opportunity; transparency, accuracy, and authenticity are essential to overcome skepticism and truly engage our residents.

Once trust is established, the city can provide essential information with appropriate levels of detail to better inform residents. Whether the audience likes the message or not, trust is built by trustworthy, relevant communications.

When all segments of our community are engaged in key public decisions and the decision-makers’ choices are driven by their best sense of the public’s interest, I’ll feel that I have achieved my campaign promise…but not until!

Trustworthy, accurate and reliable local news stories are more important now than ever. Support our newsroom by making a contribution and becoming a subscribing member today.

About The Author Dana Point Times

comments (36)

  • Sounds great, it seems that Capo Cares and Save DP are the only ones who get involved (and they only care about their slice of land). You can see that by looking at the Capital Improvement Budgets over the past 10 years. The Capo group receives 42% of the Capital Improvement budget but only represents 10-15% of the total revenue of the city. I think it’s time for MB and LD people to get their monies worth, so they need to get involved. The Capo people have destroyed the LD/Town Center potential, cost the city future income steams and have loaded the council with anti-growth and anti-police council members (Lewis voted against the police budget (then writes an article that makes her sound like she is pro-police, right!), and Wyatt made a motion to vote against the police budget and then voted against his own motion (is that politics???????). Wake up LD and MB people, we are getting taken to the cleaners. The insanity has to stop, the Town Center is done but only ugly holes remain and no revenue comes from ugly holes.

  • Concerned in Dana Point Reply

    Pretty interesting that Sanford Edward’s had his case settled through mitigation with Mayor Lewis and Mayor Pro-Tem Wyatt earlier this week. The Save Dana Point PAC was the main supporter of Lewis and Wyatt in the last election. Sanford Edward’s donated $20,000 to their PAC. That donation was a little less than each candidate received directly combined!!!

    Now 6-months later Edward’s settles his $550K lawsuit by only paying $248K.. He basically bought the election with a $20K donation that ended up saving him $270K. Got to love local politics.

    Its actually astounding how brazen these two are. The two leaders of their PACs now sit on the Dana Point Financial Review Committee. What are the chances of anyone having any issues with the fact that 42% of Capital Improvements happen in Capo Beach yearly.

  • Is there a place you can point to where it shows Sanford Edward’s donations to the last election? I’m wondering if you have facts we can refer to, or if this is just bad information being spread.

    Typically, and I certainly don’t know for sure, it’s cheaper and easier for all parties to settle as quickly as possible on lawsuits. No one really wins other than the lawyers. Unless you’ve been drug into one of these messes, it can be hard to understand. Wouldn’t it be more helpful for the city to focus on the future, instead of the past? Beach access is open to the public, and we can all move on with positive development. Constantly criticizing what the Council does to rectify issues that they probably weren’t even a part of creating is just unproductive on moving DP ahead.

    I don’t live in Capo Beach, but why is everyone constantly hating on that area and the people that live there? It’s old but nice, and pretty run down in some parts. I can’t see how the us vs them battlelines are really productive for Dana Point as a whole community.

  • The ignorant and deceptive stream of comments from “New in DP” and “Concerned in DP” in the Dana Point Times requires a response. Their malicious intent is clear along with the evident errors and slanders in their posts that can be easily refuted. They do not have the courage to sign their posts with their real name/names. Maybe only one person makes this stuff up but uses different names to create the illusion there is more than one person behind these fantasies. Why don’t you show up at a council meeting and repeat these comments with an audience and on the record? Try posting using your real name.

  • Concerned in Dana Point Reply

    Typical response from Steve Stewart, I have no idea if that is in fact your real name. I also have no idea who New in DP is, but no I won’t be sharing my name. I don’t need people like you attacking me for sharing the truth.

    What is very consistent with your posts is you never actually respond to the facts that are being communicated. Edward’s donated $20K to the Save Dana Point PAC. Unquestionable fact that is available per public record. That PAC promoted Lewis and Wyatt heavily. Now that the election is over they negotiate a $300K cut in his fines? Lewis’s is literally quoted in the OC Register stating that she participated in the negotiation. I would love to here from you on what I am missing here.

    Regarding New in DP’s point regarding spending in Capo Beach. That is also unquestionable, the information is public. Now that Wyatt and Lewis have appointed the two leaders of their PACs to the Dana Point Financial Review Committee, what are the chances of the review being fair an unbiased? One of the PACs is called Capo Cares for God’s same and both individuals live in Capo Beach.

  • Is there a place you can point to where it shows Sanford Edward’s donations to the last election? I’m wondering if you have facts we can refer to, or if this is just word of mouth information being spread.

    Typically, and I certainly don’t know the details for sure, it’s efficient and easier for all parties to settle as quickly as possible on lawsuits. No one really wins other than the lawyers. Unless you’ve been drug into one of those messes, it can be hard to understand. Wouldn’t it be more helpful for the city to focus on the future, instead of the past? Beach access is open to the public, and we can all move on with positive town development.

    I’m not from Capo Beach, but why is everyone constantly negative about that area and the people that live there? It it older, and was pretty run down in some parts. I can’t see how the us vs them battlelines are really productive for Dana Point as a whole town.

    • Long-Time Resident Reply

      Go to the City website, select,
      Department » City Clerk » Fair Political Practices Reporting

      and then select “All 2016 Documents”.

      There’s slightly over $20K in contributions from Headlands Reserve, LLC to “Residents Who Care About Dana Point” in a CA Form 460 filled out by Betty Hill.

  • Dear Cowardly in Dana Point: I’m not using my name because you and your buddy are such haters, who knows who you’ll attack next? You seem to hate anyone who does something good for their community or is supported by a lot of residents. Or is it really the RESIDENTS you hate? Especially the 65% who supported Lewis and Wyatt? Maybe YOU”RE the greedy developers’ reps, or the greedy short term rental promoters?? I dare you to reveal your names and your “facts” in public where you can be sued for libel or slander. Where’s your proof that Lewis and Wyatt took donations from Edwards or are in his camp in any way? Where’s your proof that Capo Cares, which reports publicly that they are NOT a PAC and have NO funding of any kind, took money from Edwards or even know the man? Where’s your proof that Save Dana Point supports Edwards or his agenda, other than agreeing with him on Short term rentals?

    Did you miss the REAL fact that Lewis and Wyatt finally stopped the over $1 million Strandsgate bleeding and helped negotiate a deal to save the City over $600 k in legal fees clawback and untold additional legal fees to negotiate same? Oh, you’d rather they keep the thing going and risk losing the counter suit. (Maybe you work for Rutan and Tucker. They’re the only real winners in this deal.) Or the FACT that the mediation was likely supported by ALL Council members, not just the two you hate? Or the FACT that Save Dana Point has been one of Edwards’ and Strandsgate’s biggest critics? First you say this group is anti-development, and then you say they’re in a developer”s pocket. Which is it? Or are they simply pro RESPONSIBLE development unlike you and your friends? Could it be that Edwards simply agreed with 4,000 other referendum signers that the rental ordinance was bad for Dana Point and made contributions to help get the needed signatures in the tiny timeframe – thanks to the City’s delaying tactics ? Get a grip.

    And where’s your proof that Capo Beach is somehow getting all the money? God, man. Do you have eyes? Have you SEEN the commercial areas on Doheny Park Road or PCH in Capo? Have you compared it to Monarch Beach or Lantern District which you think are getting a raw deal? What???You’re comparing 5 star areas to the ghetto and claiming the ghetto is unfairly getting all the funding. Oh yeah. We’re expected to believe that $46 million (42% of $110 million total capital expenditures per the best public record – DPs annual financial report) has been spent in Capo in 10 years. Call the cops, because if that’s true, someone’s been stealing cause there’s nothing to show for it. Put your “public record” here with itemized expenses and let’s see where the money went. Let’s get FRC to investigate THAT!

    Oh yeah, and your final rant — so what’s the deal? Only people from certain neighborhoods are allowed on FRC – a body of unpaid commissioners which has NO policy making authority by the way. FRC is trying to find a way to balance a bloated budget that is taking us off a cliff thanks to years of reckless spending. There’s NO money to put in Capo or anyplace else, Mr. Cowardly, so no need to worry. If you watched or attended Council meetings (where you’ll sometimes see the REAL standup guy, Steve Stewart) instead of trolling from your cave, you’d know Dana Point needs all the help it can get to plug the holes. You’re worried about money that is no longer there to spend so don’t waste your troll breath. Wise up and do something positive like the folks you’re bashing.

    That’s it for me. Couldn’t help setting the cowards straight, but from now on I’ll take a page from the dignified folks you’re bashing and adopt their policy – no discussions with terrorists – cut off the oxygen and ignore the haters. So don’t bother responding, Cowards, unless you find the stones to stand up with your names and facts instead of baseless and hateful innuendoes.

    • I’m not sure I understand how you are associating my issues with Lewis, Wyatt and their PACs with having an issue with Capo Beach in general. Quite honestly I think these people have been taken advantage of by these politicians and their PACs. They were made to believe our city council had under invested in the area, but the data clearly proves otherwise. Somehow killing the build out of the town center was good for them, Development was supposed to ruin the city, but now we are left with empty lots and businesses going under. With the anti development stance Lewis and Wyatt have taken, who in the world would invest in Doheny Village.? That place will remain an eyesore while those two are in office. That is guaranteed. Smart money would never touch a city where ballot box zoning rules the day.

      Dana Point use to be a place where its citizens welcomed and encouraged development, where tourism was understood to be benificial to our community. There weren’t divisions like we see today. Now we are seeing property values decrease, while they are increasing everywhere else, Businesses are closing down constantly and crime is on the rise. Call me names all you want, it’s childesh. I hope in the future we can have an honest fact based debate, instead of name calling.

  • I don’t get the negativity against Capo either. I think a lot of activism comes from that area because it has been neglected for so long. And now that it’s finally their turn, guess what? There’s no money left!! Look at Doheny Park Road versus the rest of the town. Wouldn’t you be mad too? I can understand why they want to advocate for their neighborhoods. I don’t get why anyone would NOT want this area to improve.

    What I don’t get is why anyone would rag on the people who are promoting that area. If it looked as good as the rest of DP, there’d be no need to complain. Let’s fix it! No matter where you live, this is one of the entrances to Dana Point and it looks like crap.

  • Wow, I hit a nerve and that might be good. I give Capo Cares all of the credit, they are doing what the other areas are not, pulling together to lobby. I think the whole point of the article was that. And, since they are receiving more money, that’s great. Now is the time for the other areas to chime in, because they are getting the short end of the stick. For someone who has not voted for any of the council members (I’m new and really haven’t met too many of the members (have reached out to all of them), but have gone to a few CC meetings and Parking meetings)), I do find it sad that their is so much division. Seems like people are frustrated we spent all of that money of the Town Center, yet nothing is being built (or at least no new projects have come along).

    I think one point a few Capo beach people might not understand, as a person who is paying $200 a month in HOA, My roads are not being maintained by the city, for the most part MB is all HOA and seems like a lot of LD is also. Also, seems like the two new council members (who are very good citizens), want to cut and slash staff instead of building new revenue sources. Growth is going to happen, even in places that are liberal (just check out the Bay Area), things are always changing. can’t keep such a beautiful city from living at it’s best potential. If we lived and grew to the fullest potential, the city’s property tax revenue would grow, we could become that 5 star city that we should be.

    Check out the year on year real estate numbers, Dana Point was slightly down year over year, yet numerous places in the rest of Orange County are up 10-15%. Is that because of our mess or do people really want to live in Westminster over DP?

    And, finally. As a new person, I have no ties to developers in southern California. A few northern California developer friends have come down and reviewed the landscape down here. I know two who have an interest and then I tell them of the restrictions and the H/I issue. They have both indicated that they would rather wait until the issues are resolved. Bad thing is, will the economy be good then, like it is now? We are in the greatest economic expansion in history, money is cheap, carry cost are at an all time low, and we have ugly holes, our residential real estate market is down (when the rest of the county is up, and we live on the coast) and their is no game plan. That’s my issue.

    • OK, New in DP, maybe you’re misinformed because you’re a Newbie, but you keep saying Capo gets more money for capital projects and that’s a crackup. Print your source info here with dates and amounts, sourced to city records, because those of us in Capo know darn well we get road and sewer repairs and that’s about it. Come on, show us the numbers or quit telling lies.

      Everyone I’ve talked to in real estate has said the problem in Lantern District is that it’s a busy thoroughfare, the lots are too small, and there’s no place to park. You could eliminate all parking requirements and I bet those lots still wouldn’t sell. Did you show your San Francisco developers around Doheny Park Road? Maybe they were impressed but we’re not. And for the record New Guy, a lot of us in Capo would have no trouble paying $200 per month to get the safety of an HOA. We have mail theft, tweekers roaming the neighborhood, and a former Council that had no problem throwing us under the bus for their Air BNB pals. Not enough that we have sober living homes on every corner — they wanted hotels on our streets too. So much for a residential neighborhood. So stop ragging on Capo Beach, bud,. I don’t know what your game is, but it won’t work. We’ve had the short end of the stick for years and everyone who’s not new in DP knows it.

      • Because our newly elected leaders have promised transparency and have asked for public participation- perhaps the first step is a quick outline of where capital improvements have been made in the last 25 / 20 / 15 / 10 / 5 years, and reference against the overall budget each year. This could be a really easy graph / summary.

        I think once everyone understands where we have come from and where the money has gone we could get to a level playing field. Other than that- I read these comments and think you are all crazy.

        oh btw dan- I wouldn’t rip on Hotels too much. They have been funding this town for a long time. And will ultimately provide the money for Capo Beach Improvements.

      • Dan – will try to bring up at next council (if I can make it, I work). I believe they will have to produce it, since it is a city document. BTW, I hope Capo does get a HOA for your safety and for the betterment of the community, and it will also free up cash flow for the city, It’s beautiful up there in Capo (just like every part) and it is sad to see vagrants, homelessness and downtrodden businesses etc…. It’s all about increasing the value of homes for current residents, so a nice city means everyone wins. Having homelessness, empty ugly lots, multiple cars parked on lots, doesn’t make the city beautiful and it sure doesn’t bring in revenue.

        In regards to the DH Village, I’m in agreement with others, developer fees would have helped the area. Development isn’t a bad thing, it brings in new life, rehabilitation of old buildings, new energy and most importantly, Money! Smart development is key, bad thing is; the well is spoiled and developers are spooked. Now the Measure H people need to step up and try to change this. Running against something is easy, running something isn’t (plus we dropped all of that money into the Town Center and we are 60% done, let’s get it to 100%).

        So, let’s stop trying to squeeze a buck from our police services (or implementing a smoking ban?) and get to serious issues; How will the city be able to recruit developers to clean this place up? So far I have heard nothing from those who gave us H.

  • Great idea, Mike! Just send in a public records request to the City Clerk. I don’t think our newly elected are doing the books, so this info would have to come from the Finance Department. I’m sure they’d have no problem shedding light on this issue since they’re the ones who outed the City’s financial woes and now everyone’s scrambling to plug the budget holes.

    And you misunderstood my comment re: hotels, Mike. Read it again. I was referring to short term rentals which added to sober living, would make our community a living hell. Two day rentals turn residential neighbors into “hotels” with strangers coming in every couple of days. (As if we need MORE strangers!) We love real hotels in Capo. They pay the bills with TOT, don’t you know? Why on earth our former Council would compete directly with our bread and butter industry with the Short Term rental ordinance is beyond me.

    Go ahead, build as many hotels as you want. We love tourists and we love TOT! Just stick with the height restrictions and don’t pull a Raintree on us. And don’t forget parking this time. As to Capo Beach improvements, no one’s holding their breath. We know we always come last, and there’s no money in sight for Doheny Village thanks to that white elephant with no parking — Lantern District. Next they’ll gather whatever crumbs are left in the bloated budget and use it for a parking structure over there, which they should have built with some of money in the first place. Good grief. It will be years before there’s a dime for Capo so no worries. The trolls on this thread have it all wrong. Just use your eyes. Does Capo really look like it got all the money? Dingbats.

  • Alright I will submit and then also try and make sure all Council Members signoff and hopefully Mayor Pro-Tem can produce/document the findings in an article this month.

    Ah- I got ya on the hotels. No worries. Its too bad we never got the Doheny Hotel off the ground. TOT revenue would be supporting Doheny Improvements right now. But I guess the vagrants need a place to sleep after they eat their del taco after a nice day of drinking.

    One other item- I say this almost daily. I live in the Lantern District and think the parking requirements are crazy. I walk more than anyone in this town and I know the truth behind the parking. The parking was used as the hook for creating the anti-development zoning we have now. (Yes – I say anti development, others may say responsible development)

    Either way- in order to send more money over to Capo Beach (immediate developer impact fees, long term additional taxes) for use on re-zoning, etc. I would be more than willing to encourage development which required zoning changes much the same as Raintree.

    I am wondering this – (for any of the CAPO CARES folks) – considering another autoparts/mechanic shop is going in down there now- wouldn’t you want any extra money to update the zoning code as fast as possible? If that money was from developer impact fees from projects in the Towncenter, wouldn’t that make sense?

    This has been my argument all along for why Capo Cares and Save Dana Point actually had very differing objectives once the Lantern District funding was approved. I wish some folks who really want / request improvements in Doheny or to the bridge would recognize that.

  • Long-Time Resident Reply

    DanTheMan stated,

    “Everyone I’ve talked to in real estate has said the problem in Lantern District is that it’s a busy thoroughfare, the lots are too small, and there’s no place to park. You could eliminate all parking requirements and I bet those lots still wouldn’t be developed. ”

    So if the lack of LD parking, and not parking requirements, is a problem, what’s preventing developers from adding more parking to their proposed plans?

    • Long-Time Resident Reply

      Oops, I goofed up strike-through, meant the quote to say, “… those lots still wouldn’t sell be developed.”

    • Guys, guys, will you cut out the whining about Measure H?? Geez. Your like broken records. How come Craft House and Coastal Kitchen managed to develop? And how about that Union Bank development and those huge condos behind Denny’s? They’re all post Measure H and they figured it out. And none of them are asking for corporate welfare or big variances to go too high or trying to eliminate parking so their customers can tick off residents like those poor folks in LD who have drunks parking in front of their houses at all hours.

      You obviously have lots that are too small, or developers who are too small minded. Beach close, nice town, high incomes, good concept for a restaurant or a store and enough parking for customers and maybe even some staff – what’s the problem? Get your act together and get moving. It’s not up to the Council to bail you out and make your business work. They spent $30 million on your area already. Capo property owners should be whining, not you. Figure it out, and play the hand you’re dealt. Really. Drop the violins. It’s getting old and I need to earn a living.

      • Dan,

        I don’t like to comment on these, but wanted to throw in my 2 cents, actually correct what you are saying. Craft House and Coastal kitchen were rehabs of old buildings, and were opened before Measure H was even passed. Additionally, South Cove is not in the Lantern District so it is not affected, regardless they were entitled and got any variances they needed before Measure H passed. Union Bank also received their entitlements before Measure H, so if they did have variences, Measure H would not affect them. So in the past year, in the Lantern District, please let me know how many projects have been entitled to fill the vacant lots? I will tell you…. None. Everything that is happening is a result of development before Measure H passed. That is why people bring it up.

        • 2 Cents, that only makes “sense” if the parking is the pitiful parking Measure I was suggesting. I doubt it very much but would like to know the no. of spots each place has. I suspect most if not all of these have parking that would comply with Measure H. Take a look and let us know your 2 cents.

        • To your points 2 Cents:
          Both South Cove and the Union Bank project conform to the general Measure H parameters of height and use. Union Bank would not need a variance if its developers had applied post Measure H’s adoption. Measure H would not stop projects like these. .

          Measure H will stop more Raintree style four story apartment buildings in the Lantern District. Most Dana Point residents, judging by the vote margin, prefer that projects like Union Bank and South Cove be built in the Lantern District. If Measure H is not stopping projects like that there is no substance to the bogus complaints in this thread about Measure H.

          • Nothing seems to be happening with Union Bank, Raintree or any other project in the Lantern District for that matter. Cash is cheap and yet all development is seemingly at a stand still. Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt drove Measure H. Wonder what their plan is to get some construction going? As best I can tell the only plan they have is to set up more committees. Sounds like Analysis Paralysis to me.

          • Long-Time Resident

            Lantern Lady:

            Work is ongoing with Raintree, but a lot of it is underground so it’s not readily apparent.

            Union Bank seems to be dead in the water, which is what a spokesman warned about at a Council meeting before the Measure H/I votes.

            It’s hilarious how the Measure H supporters try to deny the obvious, that Measure H’s passage will slow down mixed-use development, and cost the City millions in lost revenue. That said, I think the no-growth contingent of the pro-H crowd is going to be very unhappy in several years, as LD development should continue, just at a slower rate.

  • Concerned in Dana Point Reply

    Dan the Man,

    Couple of points to consider:
    – The vacation rental ban did nothing to prevent Sober Living Homes. If anything it spurred buying. Per the June 10th issue of the OC Register home prices are down 30% in Capo Beach. You lost the folks looking to buy second homes but sure made Sober Living an attract investment.
    – the Measure H stance not only killed development in the Lantern District but also placed a nail in the coffin of Doheny Village. Buck Hill drove ballot box zoning in the Town Center, hard to imagine the obstructions he’d place in preventing Doheny Village from evolving. Rumors are Staples is getting ready to shut its doors, wonder what will replace it? My guess is Bail Bonds.
    – Sanford Edward’s revenge must be sweet. He got all his money out on the sale of the lots, had most of his fines forgiven and now leaves us with people like Wyatt and Lewis to destroy the town. It’s no wonder he didn’t keep a lot for himself at Headlands.

  • Oh, Concerned in DP, you’re beginning to concern me. Come on, admit it, you’ve got to be one of those landowners in Lantern District who can’t accept the citizens decision on H. Who said anything about rental bans stopping Sober living homes? I said it would add more transients to a community already reeling from SLHs. Why would we want to double down and add short term rentals to the mix? Get a grip.

    And there you go again with your selective “facts”. The Register article is comparing first quarter 17 over 2016. Sales are down 30% because only 15 sold instead of 28. Capo real estate is just fine, thank you. In fact 92624 according to Zillow has a median home price of $859,600 and increased 6.4% last year and predicted to rise .4% next year. Dana Point is $848,200, up 4.5% and predicted to grow 0% next year.

    On DV, Staples is in San Juan, by the way and who knows what will go in there. There’s no money for infrastructure in DV thanks to your beloved Lantern District, so no worries on that score for you and your friends. The only hope is to get zoning in place. Small funds are already budgeted to complete the plan and at least get us some zoning. No one’s waiting for money to come from LD. Even if you developed every lot, the money’s already spent on the bloated budget. You keep dangling supposed LD profits like their real. Why don’t you put away the violins, bud, and concentrate on developing your own lot and leave us alone over here? Or better yet, if you hate Measure H, organize citizens and try to put Measure I back on the ballot. Quit whining about ancient history and slamming Capo beach and popular Council members and residents organizations. Anyone else you hate I should add to the list? Do something good for Dana Point instead of lobbing grenades.

    On Edwards, what are you drinking in your coffee, man? The Council negotiated to stop a claim by Edwards that could have cost the city $600k plus legal fees. They sawed off on the city’s claim and saved attorneys costs. Sounds like a good deal to me. You should be thanking Wyatt and Lewis, not spitting at them. How exactly are they destroying the town? Oh yeah, all that transparency and openness and fiscal responsibility is really hard to swallow, right? Why don’t you get on board with citizens who put Dana Point residents first?

    • Long-Time Resident Reply

      DTM: You’re mistaken about what the Register article says. 92624 (Capo Beach) sales are up but median sales prices are down about 30%,

      “28 homes sold in the latest period vs. 15 one year ago. That’s a sales gain of 87 percent. Median selling price of $802,500 vs. $1,150,000 last year, a loss of 30.2 percent.”

      However, you could still be right about prices having increased, since median selling price is not conclusive. Or the Register article could be incorrect. CoreLogic shows an increase in April, 2017 median selling price vs 2016 of about 31%.

      I track 92629 closely, and there’s no doubt prices have gone up over the last year.

  • For those interested in facts:

    Residents Who Care About Dana Point:
    1. Formed to raise money and support Measure H
    2. Later used to raise money and support the referendum overturning the Short Term Rental
    3. Never contributed any money to either Debra Lewis’ or Paul Wyatt’s campaign
    4. Received money from Headland Reserves and 2 other hotels in support of referendum
    overturning Short Term Rental Ordinance, along with donations from many individuals

    Debra Lewis & Paul Wyatt only accepted money from individuals.except :
    1. Paul Wyatt received $300 from Orange County League of Conservation Voters
    2.Paul Wyatt received $710 from Orange County Professional Firefighters Assoc.
    3 Debra Lewis received $300 from Orange County League of Conservation Voters

    Neither Debra Lewis nor Paul Wyatt received any money from a PAC
    Neither Debra Lewis nor Paul Wyatt received any money from Residents Who Care About Dana
    Neither Debra Lewis nor Paul Wyatt received any money from Sanford Edward
    Neither Debra Lewis nor Paul Wyatt received any money from Headlands LLC
    Neither Debra Lewis nor Paul Wyatt received any money from a corporation, LLC, partnership or other

    Go to the City website, select,
    Department » City Clerk » Fair Political Practices Reporting
    and then select “Candidate & Committee Statements of Contributions and Expenditures”
    then select “All 2016 Documents”.

    You can see all the FPPC 460s filed by Residents Who Care About Dana Point, Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt, listing donors

    You can also look at

    • Long-Time Resident Reply

      Mayor Lewis: Nothing in your post contradicts what “Concerned” stated in his 2 posts on contributions in this thread, Nice attempt at deflection though.

      relevant posts by “Concerned”-
      Pretty interesting that Sanford Edward’s had his case settled through mitigation with Mayor Lewis and Mayor Pro-Tem Wyatt earlier this week. The Save Dana Point PAC was the main supporter of Lewis and Wyatt in the last election. Sanford Edward’s donated $20,000 to their PAC…

      …Edward’s donated $20K to the Save Dana Point PAC. Unquestionable fact that is available per public record. That PAC promoted Lewis and Wyatt heavily…

      P.S. I support the Council’s efforts in reducing expenses and cutting planned personnel increases. Good job so far.

  • Deron. J. Petterson Reply

    Mayor. Lewis,

    I spent some time on the websites you shared tonight. What I find interesting is the large amount of money you personally contributed to the Resident’s Who Care About Dana Point PAC. Besides Stanford Edward’s, you appear to be the largest donor. What I find most interesting is Save Dana Point and Capo Cares apparently share the same database. Fascinating how PACs and Non Profits can commingle these days. I know multiple people who signed up with Capo Cares and end up on Save Dana Point’s mailing list. Wonder how that happened?

    So while you never personally received any money from Sanford Edward’s, the PAC he supported promoted you heavily during the election cycle.. There are plenty of hard facts that support this. You have to look no farther than the Save Dana Point website for proof. Glad I have a screen shot, for when it is taken down from their website. I’m not a mathematician, but your PAC raised more money than all other candidates and all other PACs combined. So you may not have had money donated directly to your campaign, but it wasn’t really necessary with Save Dana Point pushing for your candidacy. It’s no wonder that Toni Nelson (Capo Cares) and Buck Hill (Save Dana Point) ended up being your designees on the Review Board.

  • Mary Therese Spivey Reply

    Hey Dan,
    You sound very much like the guy I met while trying to get signatures in front of the grocery store. You were very angry then as well. I was actually trying my best to calm you down. You mentioned you owned short term rental homes in DP. I can’t rememeber your name, however it brought to mind a car? Aston is that you? Aston Martin? You also told me you were in RE as well.
    Besides having that man spit in my face that day, I’ll never forget you saying that if the STR goes through, you would have your followers? As if they were mindless people in a cult or something, turn their rental properties into Sober Livng Homes. Though there is a need for these SLH, you said it like it was your shot from the bow, a clear threat to me. So many of us have loved ones suffering and so many have lost friends or family to this disease. Additionally you speaking of mentally ill, which is most of homeless, as if they are an embarrasement to you. As I recall you’re a parent of young children. Please remeber these people were someones child too.
    Your exhausting rants to try and discredit people for volunteering countless hours, for all people who live in Dana Point. This would include your guests as well, yes the homeless and the kids curbed from SLH that are thrown out becuase thier insurance will not cover any more treatment. To be honest makes it look like your heartless and well that you think we’re all idiots. Aston, it’s starting to look like you’re only concern is you monetary gain? Possibly your home makes more than you and I know my husband would be cranky if that were the case for him too.
    But like I said to you that day when I was trying to calm you there are solutions, but we need to work together. These people you go after spend so many hours giving to our community, all of our community, and it worries me that people like you will make them wonder if it’s all worth it. We really need people like the Hill’s groups, like Capo Cares leaders, like Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt now more than ever, so please stop these rants, but if you can’t then please at least base them on facts.

  • Mary Therese Spivey Reply

    Please excuse me Dan, I was referring to the people who post and dont use their names. New to Dp and Concerned… Or whatever they are using as their sock puppet names..


  • Mary Therese Spivey Reply

    Sorry Dan,

    I didnt mean to address you with my comment. I meant to address those that hide behind made up names,

  • Mayor Pro Tem Wyatt – you have woken up and smelled the coffee. As the performance last night at the council meeting showed, the current mayor is out on her own, lost in a world of make believe (doing budget projections but focusing in on flat growth, instead of looking at future potential growth), thinking she is the queen bee of the city, when she is really just one of five equals.

    Also, Ms. Nelson is also out on her own. Who gave her the right to be the ruler of the council, especially since she is not elected. She probably has committed more Brown Act violations then even Ms Lewis, she only cares about her property (she lives next to Pine Parks, the city has spent millions fixing, near the RR tracks, where the city has spent money on the quiet zone (which is smart)), and that lady wants more, more power to corrupt that is. I think last night showed the town what’s really happening, a corrupt citizen(s) wants to make the town her own, hires a newbie to become mayor and then tries to manipulate and steal the council by sitting on the so called Financial Review Committee. Capo Cares should be titled,- the Nelson/Lewis Care – they only care about their slice of land.

    Thank you again Pro Tem Wyatt, you have come around (or maybe are coming around). Best council meeting I have seen all year. I think you have seen the light. We need to work on bringing development down to the LD, where we spent millions and their is potential millions to make. So we can make the city a true five star city, Thanks again Mr. Wyatt.

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