Page 4 of 13 Dec 2012 Issue of Laguna News Post in Laguna-Beach, California

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Laguna News Post (Newspaper) - December 13, 2012, Laguna Beach, California Laguna Beach adopts underage drinking ordinance City Council votes it in 3-2, opponents speak up one last time. By Joanna Clay the Orange county Register Laguna beaches a social Host ordinance which will penalize adults for knowingly serving alcohol to minors is to go into effect in about three weeks after being adopted last week by the City Council. The civil citation would result in the option to take a class on a first offence with $1,000 fines for subsequent violations. About 35 opponents of the ordinance showed up at the dec. 4 meeting As the Council voted 3-2 to adopt it. The Council included two members freshly seated to replace two who had joined a unanimous vote nov. 13 to give the Law initial approval. The adopted version contains some revisions for clarity. City manager John Pietig and City attorney Phil Kohn had met in recent weeks with a group of opponents Howard Hills David Vanderveen and Tijana Hamilton to discuss changes to the ordinance which were presented at the meeting. Schuyler Vanderveen a senior at Laguna Beach High school and a familiar face at past meetings thanked the Council for taking the time to have hearings and informational meetings in recent months. However he said he still feels the ordinance would be ineffective. Councilwoman Elizabeth Pearson and Toni ise Maii and new councilman Robert Whalen ultimately decided that the pros outweigh the cons. Iseman thought some people still have misconceptions about the ordinance believing it would apply to children when it would Only punish adults. She reiterated that drug and alcohol abuse is a problem in the Community. Whalen said he did no to believe any of the unintended consequences that High school students and other opponents said could happen such As incr a Drunken driving due to fewer parties. Freshly sworn in councilman Steve key elements of the Law a anyone 21 or older who knowingly serves alcohol to underage drinkers will be penalized. A a first time offender can take an approved class at his or her expense instead of being fined. Any offences after that will count As misdemeanours with a $1,000 Fine. If a first time 5lfender declines the class he or she will be fined the $1,000. A the person May be immune from prosecution if he or she makes a 911 Call for an underage Drinker needing medical assistance. A a Section outlining a reasonable Steps Quot to prevent underage drinking such As checking identification and monitoring alcohol Supply has been removed. Parents voiced concern that they would be penalized if they did t strictly follow the guidelines. A the meaning of Quot knowingly Quot has been clarified. A minor handing a bottle of Beer to an adult or getting alcohol while moving around a party would not constitute a violation. A use of alcohol in religious activities and Between a child and a Parent or Legal guardian would be exempt. Dicterow and newly appointed mayor Kelly Boyd dissented to the applause of Many Public speakers. A a in be come to the conclusion unless you can show me that this will work i wont pass it a said Boyd who voted for the ordinance in november. A a in a not going to vote on police chief Paul Workman has said that Section 272 of the California penal code regarding contributing to the delinquency of a minor is hard to prosecute due to its complexity. Lagunas ordinance will Bridge that Gap he said. Resident Emil Monda called himself an a unintended he told the Council of his experience when a girl left his Home intoxicated got in a car Accident and his family was named in a lawsuit filed by victims. A this Law will give plaintiffs attorneys another Arrow for their quiver a he said. The Council agreed to review the Laws effectiveness in about six months. Some parents including Keces questioned the role of the Laguna Beach Community coalition which initially introduced the ordinance to the Council. The coalition is made up of 15 agencies including the Laguna Beach unified school District the boys amp girls clubs of Laguna Beach and Mission Hospital Laguna Beach. reduce youth drinking and drug use. Community coalition representative voices Quot is the passage of a social Host ordinance really going to ensure the health welfare and safety of our children Quot ordinance opponent Tammy Keces a Parent who ran for school Board this year Quot when it comes to prosecution we re at the very Bottom of the priority list. We Don t want to be at the Bottom. We want to take this into our own councilwoman Elizabeth Pearson an ordinance supporter Christy Cornwall said the ordinance is just one tool the group Hopes to use to tackle drugs and alcohol. She said parents Are encouraged to ask for More information and data which she said she can provide. Opponent Sarah Vanderveen Schuyler Vanderveene smother said she Wasny to surprised by the outcome but Hopes to continue talking with the City and school District about positive ways to Sway children and to stray from punitive consequences when possible. Laguna Beach is the fourth City in Orange county to adopt such a Law following Irvine Laguna Hills and Mission Viejo. Ask the teacher Carol ver Vanich for the Register Contact the writer q. I read your article regarding the mid year switch for a child that is not mature enough for his Grade. My question is similar. When my son was ready to enter kindergarten i was advised to hold him Back. He is a july birthday so he just turned 13 this past july. I did t take that advice because he was very smart. However now he is in eighth Grade at a private school. He has two friends who will not be going to the same Public High school and he s not the Type to make friends easily. My son s grades have slipped a bit this year but More importantly i Don t see him being mature enough to go to High school he has a sister in ninth Grade this year but her birthday is in january so she s an Quot appropriate Quot ninth grader. I have been considering having him repeat eighth Grade at a k-8 Grade school that is fairly dose to our Home though not our zoned Middle school. This school does however feed into the same High school. What Are your thoughts on having a child who is in an older Grade than your article mentioned repeat a Grade a. Honestly i am not sure what to advise. I understand your dilemma and i think you Are Best suited to make this Call. Generally i would not recommend holding a child Back after third Grade but i can be told a Story like yours and it makes me question my stance. Make the decision based on making him feel Best about himself while he is in school. At this Point he should be brought into the discussions too. Q. Will furlough Days be put Back on the Calendar for kids or Are Only teacher salaries being restored after the proposition 30 Money comes in a. So far As a teacher i have not seen any difference after proposition 30, but the main argument behind the initiative was to prevent further cuts. I do not think it will mean an influx of Cash to schools. It Only put a plug in the current funding so we were not asked to make huge mid year cuts. I have heard that some districts Are going to be Able to restore furlough Days but each District will get to decide this on its own to some extent. The required number of school Days is now at 175, so districts do not have to restore Days but i think Many May. I Hope this happens because lowering that bar was a tragedy. Contact the writer at

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