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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR POLICY: To submit a letter to the editor for possible inclusion in the paper, e-mail us at or send it to 34932 Calle del Sol, Suite B, Capistrano Beach, CA 92624. Dana Point Times reserves the right to edit reader-submitted letters for length and is not responsible for the claims made or the information written by the writers.

Michael Frost, Dana Point

Neighbors, as you go through the issues and distinguish between the candidates on budgets, safety, development, property rights and special interests, these safe political answers you read are often inaccurate.

I believe this city election is about creating a fair and balanced City Council, with checks and balances to eliminate decisions benefitting special interests or groups focused solely on one area of the city.

A slate of candidates is being heavily supported by two special interest groups.  One is Capo Cares, who recently on Aug. 26 emailed their election strategy.  The first issue is, I believe this campaign strategy insinuates sway or special representation from Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt.  I forget, weren’t Councilmembers Wyatt and Lewis elected in a general election to represent the entire community?

The second issue I have is with the concept of prioritizing their own interests over districts having elections this year. Welcome to the slate of candidates Jeager, Payne and McGinn.  Why not allow each district to define their own priorities? What sort of power is derived by not allowing each district to decide on their best representative?

I am afraid of any stacked council willing to make decisions to back this or any political group.   District representatives should represent their residents’ priorities, and then have the flexibility to work with other councilmembers to create a great overall community.

The other special interest backing this slate of candidates is “Residents Who Care About Dana Point”.  This PAC was primarily funded by Headlands Reserve LLC to pay an outside firm for signatures to not allow residents to rent out their own properties.  Coincidentally, after this payment, the developer pushed through a hotel up on the residential street of Green Lantern with little fanfare.  Why did this group, originally concerned with maintaining a residential atmosphere, not participate in questioning 350 hotel rooms on Green Lantern? Look at the financing for this Political Group, you will see a great example of inconsistency in policy and how special interest funding quickly guides decisions.

Why would we elect a slate of candidates that further promotes decision making based upon who has funded certain political PACs?  We have a lot of qualified folks running to represent their neighbors and not special interests.  Let’s make sure we elect a balanced city council, so each area of our community has a fair shake.

Link to Capo Cares email:

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comments (17)

  • It’s funny that this letter complaining about a slate of candidates should be published the day after I passed a door hanger in my neighborhood promoting the slate of Muller, Viczorek, and Federico together. Slandering the candidates you don’t like is unfortunate, but seems to be the new norm. But this is just brazen hypocrisy.

  • To Mr. Frost,

    I am neither of the parties you blame, but I wish you would include me. I have a “special interest” in quality of life.

    I do not want to have short term renters in my neighborhood. I purchased in a residential area with houses, not hotels, not a frat party house either, I do not want to live next to a house with different residents every weekend,

    It is obvious that you want to profit off of residential investments with total disregard for the neighborhood experience that the majority of people in Dana Point prefer..

  • What does this sentence mean, is there a typo?

    “The first issue is, I believe this campaign strategy insinuates sway or special representation from Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt.”

    I generally agree with your editorial. Fortunately, our town is booming, for now anyway, so I doubt the people you mention will be able to do too much harm to the city. Also I think Paul Wyatt is honest and competent, I don’t like him being lumped in with the others.

  • Hi Long Term Resident,

    Not sure if a typo or a preferred sentence from the editor. Considering we have more leeway in comments- what i thought it should say:

    ” The first issue is that the strategy infers sway or special representation from Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt currently”

    I just noticed the second document i provided to the DP times was not found on the link.. Which is disappointing because i wanted to make sure everyone had the full context. But the actual email strategy is why i lumped him into this group. An actual excerpt from email strategy.

    ” Lewis & Wyatt represent Capo until we vote for our 1 Council member in 2020″

    To the extent Mr. Wyatt is honest- I would think he might want to clarify for the community. I know i would appreciate it.


  • Hi Les,

    You have helped illustrate my point sir. Your comment, “I do not want to have short term renters in my neighborhood. I purchased in a residential area with houses, not hotels, not a frat party house either”

    You may not realize, but if you are in a fraternity you sign a 1 yr. lease. Which is another way for me to say that the negative affects from Short Term Rentals are not specific to Short Term Rentals. Your real issue is a lack of responsibility from your neighbors with respect to existing municipal codes, and a the lack of enforcement from the city.

    But rather than find a solution to the real problem, you and a group of residents took the easy way out, the way which benefited only you and was detrimental to other community members. You prioritized rules and policies which immediately benefited you and your front door, with no respect for the other portions of the community.

    Furthermore, you didn’t have the required signatures, so your group received money from a Developer to help ensure your priorities, and then as a favor your “Pro-Resident” group allowed and even had Debra Lewis supporting 350 hotel rooms with access on residential streets of Blue Lantern and Green Lantern.

    That sir- is the intent of my letter. And I believe running a slate of candidates only furthers this sort of prioritization of what a very few people believe is good for the community.

    For the record i do not own a rental unit. Short or Long Term

  • There you go again. Caustic Measure I supporter from Lantern District has no problem calling community groups that represent actual citizens “special interests”. What kind of advocacy groups would they be if they didn’t try to elect decent candidates who might actually treat their area fairly or put residents first for a change?

    Do you really think residents in any district want 2 day vacation rentals next door? Party animals or neighbors? Tough decision. Why didn’t the Council put the ordinance to a vote? They had that option. Residents should be thanking any group or person who helped overturn that terrible idea. You’re obsessed with a developer who for once was on the right side with citizens in overturning an ordinance that would have ruined residential neighborhoods.

    Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt are the at large representatives for Capo Beach and Lantern District since they don’t have a district rep. This isn’t “special representation”, in Capo’s case it’s their only representation, because Muller, Viczorek and Tomlinson have been MIA for any issues south of the bridge to nowhere. Capo Beach watched their community be divided and their vote stolen thanks to election year gerrymandering by Viczorek, Muller and their own turncoat neighbor, Tomlinson. Didn’t hear you speaking up for the unfairness of letting Monarch and Bible Belt vote but not Capo which also had an incumbent. But it’s just Capo, right. They always come last. Why can’t they just accept that and shut up?

    Pretty clear that when Tomlinson innocently said “let’s go with Districts, 1, 2 and 3”, Federico had already been chosen to form the new slate of Muller, Viczorek and Federico now being blasted about town. This new slate of three stooges can continue to overspend and leave Doheny Village the armpit of the city. Just bend over and take it, Capo, like you’ve always done, right?.

    Forgive my naïveté, but I thought every person had a first amendment right to advocate for people who just might treat them fairly. Don’t worry, they can’t vote, but at least allow them the right to fight for their rights by supporting decent candidates. who will be making decisions affecting them.

    This election is everyone’s business. Every person in DP will be affected by the decisions of 3 people on City Council. We’ve seen what happens when they’re the wrong 3. Capo gets no vote this year and now you want to make sure they get no voice either. Except you, though. You can use your voice and poison pen to denigrate those who are fighting for their community just like you want to fight for yours. I’m sure you’re advocating like mad for the status quo slate but for God’s sake don’t let those “other people” speak up. If you lived in Capo and not Lantern, what would you be doing?

    If your dream team is successful, they’ll make sure Capo Beach comes dead last as usual. 2 of them took their vote and Federico is already walking in lockstep. Do you really think they give a damn about the embarrassment of Doheny Village?. It’s been a magnet for transients and crime for years and that will only get worse. Be careful, buddy, When the stern goes down, eventually the whole ship does too.

    • You make a lot of accusations in your reply with nothing to back it up.. (or at least you provided not documentation)

      I submitted documents supporting my opinions and conclusions. You can feel free to disagree.
      The second portion of the documentation is now up and shows the email strategy for a complete slate. It also supports my comment that Debra Lewis and Paul Wyatt represent CAPO. Look, i didn’t write the email, if I am misinterpreting something let me know.

      And if you have supporting evidence to your claims that CAPO doesn’t receive a fair shake please provide. If you have evidence the John Tomlinson suggested these districts please provide. If you have evidence of Jamey Federico being slated please provide.

      I am more than willing to review your documentation

  • I dont recall reading your complaints about candidate slates back when Strands LLC and other local business interests put handpicked candidates Joe Muller and Richard Viczorek on a slate back in 2014. They were there to continue the wasteful policies and practices that council members Carlos Olvera and Bill Brough voted for during their tenure. Those policies caused useless and excessive expenditures that reduced the city’s funds balance by $30 million from 2008 thru 2018. The very few parties that benefited from that era now want to keep residents from taking back control of the city. You will lose.

    • The city spent around $20 million on capital improvements just for the Lantern District upgrade, which even with Measure H’s passage was money well spent. Counting asset inflation, the dollar has been losing about 10%/year in purchasing power for the last several years. Hoarding cash during this period was a sucker’s play.

      BTW, the city’s general fund balance increased by over a million dollars during the last fiscal year ending June 30, 2018. The only potential crisis in the city’s finances is a result of the misguided efforts by Measure H proponents to stop or slow down development by putting in unnecessary parking requirements for new projects. Or maybe they actually thought that would help things. Regardless, new construction will continue, although at a slower pace. In several years the NIMBYs will probably be complaining about all the out-of-town visitors flooding the city, and parking in the abundant spaces.

  • I am so sorry Shevy. Its tough going it alone. I know how you feel. I was speaking to my neighbor over the fence about all this and he pointed me in the direction of the old “they came for me” poem. It’s so true when i think of you and your example. I don’t own a rental unit, but I don’t like the dirty politics.

    I wrote a very opinionated letter (i admit that), with what i think is appropriate backup for my conclusions. And then the critiques seem to come back not even addressing my concerns. Maybe I give up, having five council members all representing the same group is the best thing for the city!

  • Reading that email has me wondering. Should Capo Cares have access to our city manager, the way they have over the past year?

    Especially since now we know that Capo Cares has not only butted their nose into others districts business (the PTA mom syndrome) they have conspired to rob these districts of our own tax revenue. If you examine the city’s numbers, you will learn that 63% of our street improvement budget is spent in Capo, yet district 5 might, on a good day, bring in 7-8% of the city revenue. And 35% of the total capital improvement budget! Again, on 7-8% of e revenue (based on numbers between 2007-2017).

    I really think our city manager, who seems like a good guy, should really think about spending time with the PTA lady (sorry, the Capo Cares leader) when that group, a so called non profit, is now into picking candidates, and supporting them thru devious means (big time developer money being funneled thru independent expenditures paid by the guy who sued us, and the Residents who only Care About themselves, sorry they call themselves Residents who Care for Dana Point)

    It really is a conflict and I hope our city manager realizes he is getting played, and he might be putting the few in front of the many residents. And I just wonder is that right? Should a non profit that is political be using our city attorney to further steal money from the other district for the benefits of a few politically connected people? I hope the city manager can respond.

  • This ongoing campaign of slander and political dirty tricks is getting out of hand. What’s so frightening about wanting a change on the City Council to benefit the majority of the citizens of Dana Point? The majority of us who supported Measure H and just want the city council to represent the citizens instead of their own interests must have put a scare into the powerful political forces behind Measure I and our legacy councilmen. I think the voters are smart enough to see through the innuendo and lies, and know who has their best interests at heart.

    • I agree with Jay. The wild charges being made about Capo Cares and developer money behind certain candidates are not even close to reality. They are made up lies or confabulated ideas about real people who deserve better than to be maligned in this newspaper. The Payne, Jaeger and McGinn campaigns are supported only by residents contributions and the shoe leather of dozens of Dana Point citizens who are walking neighborhoods and standing on street corners to support them.

      • Hi Strands Local,

        Did you review the documentation i provided?


        • My comment did not pertain to your letter but rather to the irresponsible comments from Shevy Akanson and Brandon Day. The DP Times should be more discerning in what it allows to be posted on this forum.

  • Hi Jay,

    I think my letter addresses creating a diverse city council to represent the majority of the citizens. We have diverse views out there, and we should not have a tilted council.

    Curious, I agree with you on special interests. But the problem i see is the slate being run is supported by the special interest. I am afraid you take a look into the details i provided and then review the other evidence of relationships- you will agree.

    For the record, I don’t agree with not bidding out city contracts. But if you can;t see that we have a group being funded by Headlands, and then not applying any scrutiny to those development projects your not being honest with yourself.

    Look- i believe the biggest stain on this community has been the Strandsgate Debacle. And that comes from undue influence over a group of people from one man. Now, that one man has moved onto the very group you support. Payne McGinn, Jeager.

    Honestly, sir- do you not see that? Don’t forget, people create these PACS, move PACS around so they don’t need to file etc.

    I live on Amber Lantern (adjacent to Raintree Project) and even i can admit the Wave Resort and subsequent hotels will be tremendously more intrusive to the local community. But no scrutiny from the Save Dana Point crowd. Why? Because their PAC was funded by the developer.

    I just don’t see how the entire community doesn’t put this together.

  • Strands local. What is wrong with my comment? Mr Denny should not be spending time with someone who is so political. Capo Cares has crossed the line with that email, they went from a local interest group into the political field.. You don’t think so?

    And my comments about the lies Ms. Lewis keeps stating, are all true. Ask your friends Steve Stewart (I gave Steve city documents that contridicts the narrative that Debra and Save DP has been spreading for the past two years., he has been silent ever since). Fact is, we have numerous DA investigations going on (at least two in the last year) specifically one councilwoman, we have been lied too by Save DP, and the facts are the big developer is paying for Debra Lewis and her gang. Please let me know one issue that isn’t true. Thanks Strands Local.

    Please reach out anytime, I have numerous city documents, and emails, that show the truth, thanks to the Califorjia Public Records Act. Or just call the DA.

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