Wayne Via, Dana Point
At the Dana Point City Council meeting last Tuesday, it was very evident that, in Dana Point, money talks. The local rental organizations did a good job of turning out the rental community. Speaker after speaker extolled the advantages of short-term rentals. I was especially touched by the young family, who sadly would no longer be able to take those expensive vacations abroad if they couldn’t rent their house while they were away. Others told us about the thousands of tax dollars their rentals brought in, and how much money all those guests must be spending at local businesses. The City Council agreed. In their summation, they emphasized the importance of each owner’s right to make money on their property. There was no mention at all of the deteriorating quality of life of those who live around those rental properties. After the meeting, I left thinking that money had won and I would at least reap the advantages of living in a well-funded city.
Saturday, my wife and I decided to enjoy our favorite free event in Dana Point, the Tall Ships Festival. We parked the car and walked to the festival. We were immediately greeted by a chain link fence, and an admission gate demanding $10 to enter. I know the event is sponsored by the Ocean Institute, but the city government sets the tone for the community. When the almighty dollar becomes more important than quality of life, the people who chose Dana Point because it was a great place to live will soon be replaced by those who buy houses in Dana Point because it’s a great place to make a buck.
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