California requires cities to have general plans. Those plans must include certain specified sections, called elements, and one of the required elements is the housing element.

To have a valid housing element, a city has to identify potential locations for high density or affordable housing. But no one in Seal Beach seems to want a residential development near them or their residential neighborhoods.

Normally, I wouldn’t comment on an issue that’s working its way through city government. I need to get people to talk to me to do my job and if I express an opinion they don’t like, they might not talk to me. However, something City Attorney Quinn Barrow said at the Monday, June 24, City Council has stayed with me.

Barrow said that Seal Beach was sued once in the past over the housing element. A judge ruled that the city did not have a valid housing element. So the judge stopped Seal Beach from issuing building permits.

That would be bad for residents and property owners. That would be bad for businesses and customers. We have a short term deadline of Oct. 15. That sounds like a long time in the future, but governance is a slow process. Seal Beach officials are looking at the Marina Park area as a potential site for a zone change. I hope it works out … but Seal Beach has only so many places where the potential houses might be built and someone will object to all those locations. Someone, somewhere in this city, is going to have to give—or we may all regret the outcome.

And if I had a good solution t this problem, I’d offer it.

The Seal Beach City Council will meet Monday, June 24. The agenda items include the possible adoption of new zoning for the Accurate Storage site located opposite Seal Beach Police Department Headquarters on Adolfo Lopez and the new city budget for 2013-14.

If these issues matter to you, email your council representative or attend the meeting. Seal Beach officials are a talented lot, but they can’t read minds. If you don’t tell them what you want, they can’t represent you as well as you’d like them to.

And that’s on Seal Beach residents, not city officials.

I won’t be giving my father a Father’s Day gift this year. He died in the early 1990s.

However, those of you who still have dads among the living can give them gifts. There are good places to eat on Seal Beach Main Street. The ocean water off our shore is, ahem, opaque, but seems to please swimmers and surfers alike—not to mention the sea lions. (Just remember to do the Stingray Shuffle—check out the video at—and avoid being stung.) The shops on Main Street are geared toward women, but some of the antique stores on Main Street contain some cool stuff that men like. (I used to work in the antiques/collectibles field. It seems toy trains and toy guns are still popular will grown men. Dolls are popular with grown women.)

And there’s the beach of course—which has the added benefit of being admission free. (Make sure dad remembers to do the Stingray Shuffle.)

Have a happy Father’s Day, Seal Beach.

News update

Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach has been considering a run for governor since early this year. He announced today, Monday, June 10, that he would not seek that office. He has not yet decided what he will do when his supervisorial term expires. See the home page of for details.

Los Alamitos Police issued a sketch of the suspect in the Friday, June 7, home invasion robbery on Howard Avenue. See the home page for details.

In March, I wrote in this blog that we could significantly reduce crime in Seal Beach by locking doors and windows. This week, I reported in the Sun print edition that the Seal Beach Police were asking the public to lock their doors and windows during the summer to prevent burglaries.

Sadly, this morning the Los Alamitos Police Department issued a press release that said a young woman was robbed in her home by a man who apparently came in through an open bathroom window. (See the home page of the Sun website for details.)

The crime was entirely the criminal’s fault. It always is.

But having said that—I’m forever writing about people who left doors unlocked and subsequently had their property stolen.

It’s a criminal’s job to take what belongs to us. It is not our job to help them. So I’ll repeat what police officers everywhere are saying:

Please.—lock your doors and windows. Lock up your cars and lock up your homes. Yes, it is a minor inconvenience. Theft is a greater inconvenience.

The so-called bombs don’t cause fires, but they can injure someone who gets too close to someone when they go off. Please see the story on the home page of for details.