“Our Town-Our Paper” lbindy.com PHOTO BY TED RECKAS February 11, 2011 | Volume X, Issue 6 SBA Offers Flood Victims A Silver Lining By Rita Robinson | LB Indy Low-interest 30-year loans through the Small Business Ad-ministration are now available for residents and merchants a ected by the December 2010 ood, which caused an estimated $12 million in damages to Laguna Beach homes and businesses. “Wow, if there’s some silver lining to losing everything, my home and my studio, this would be it,” said sculptor Louis Longi, who incurred $95,000-worth of estimated struc-tural damage to his home-studio in Laguna Canyon. Longi, who has plans to build a $6-million artists’ live-work complex, hopes to qualify for the highest amount the SBA will lend to damaged businesses, $2 million at a 4-percent annual interest rate. “ ere’s also an opportunity to get additional funding for businesses that have been wiped out as long as you’re mitigating any issues of ooding,” he said. “I’ve lost my entire business.” Longi’s plans put his artists’ live-work complex on stilts, out of ood-waters’ way. “I never have to worry about this again,” he said, “even if they don’t do their job upstream. It could be 15 years before they’re held to a higher standard.” An SBA o cial will discuss disaster assistance at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 12, in City Council Chambers. e SBA set up an o ce this past ursday at the Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce, 357 Glenneyre St., and will be available from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ursdays and Fridays every week as needed to answer questions and take loan applications. According to Mark Randle, SBA SBA, page 26 Marine Hearings Buoyed by Nonproﬁ ts Anglers sue to block ﬁ shing ban By Ted Reckas | LB Indy Expanded marine protections for Southern California were recently nal-ized a er months of debate, but sher-men that oppose the outcome maintain the process was tainted because of a little known fact: the hearings were largely funded by non-pro ts that support ma-rine sanctuaries. Five non-pro ts, including one based in Laguna Beach, donated a total of $20 million to see the dra ing process to completion since the state legislature never budgeted adequate funding for the marine-protection law, which was enacted in 1999. Meanwhile, recreational shermen continue to fund litigation and lobbying to roll back the new regulations, which could go into e ect as soon as April. e new rules will broaden marine protected areas that bar commercial and recre-ational shermen from some prized sh-ing grounds, including most of Laguna Beach’s shoreline, a favorite of spear-sh-ermen and lobster-hunters for decades. David Myers, owner of Dana Point’s Jig Stop Tackle and leader of the south-ern California recreational shing group United Anglers, maintains that MLPA funding by environmental supporters is a con ict of interest. “Since the process was rigged from the beginning, the fact is this is what the gov-ernment wanted, and created the process to achieve it. We are working a er the fact here, because it was totally controlled,” Myers said. Others involved with the legal process refute his contention. “ ey wanted the law implemented and were willing to put up $20 million to ensure that we had a public process and everyone was heard. at’s good public policy,” said Ken Wiseman, director of the MLPA Initiative, the public-private partnership appointed by state o cials to implement the law. “Private philanthropic foundations were only involved on the condition that MARINE, page 28 Laytham Jacoby outside his home. Valentine Falls Victim to City Code Heartbreak By Jennifer Erickson | LB Indy It was no cupid’s bow but an official let-ter that took aim last week at a lit up heart displayed in an Oro Street yard, figura-tively piercing the hearts of the property owners and astonishing neighbors. Partners Laytham Jacoby and Adrian Vandeudekom have lived on Oro for 14 years. Throughout those years, Jacoby cele-brated various special occasions by setting out whimsical, themed displays in the yard – ghouls at Halloween, trees at Christmas, a big shamrock for St. Patty’s Day and a red heart with a white arrow through it for Valentine’s Day. Until now, no one complained. On the contrary, people often stopped, telling them they enjoyed the playful displays. In a letter that arrived last week, dated Jan. 31, code enforcement officer Tony Farr informed the property owners their Valentine arrangement is in violation of a municipal code that restricts holiday lights to Nov. 15 through Jan. 15 and ordered the immediate removal of the decoration or risk further action. An informal poll of neighborhood residents last week revealed a common reaction upon learning of their neigh-bors’ plight. “What? You’re kidding. Why?” “We were a bit taken aback by it,” admitted Vandeudekom, expressing his shock and dismay at receiving the letter. “We just think the code is ridiculous and needs to be changed.” Moreover, the couple are aggravated at the seemingly arbitrary enforcement of the code. If it is taken at face value, any lights and decorations put up outside of the three-month window are techni-cally a violation. This would include all Halloween decorations, for example, and begs the question why decorations are permissible on Oak Street, where nearly every house is festooned. The code is a “regulation exemp-tion” under the zoning chapter on sign VALENTINE, page 26 Emerging musicians cap the local music festival with weekend concerts. Limelight, pg. 8 . 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