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  • Monday, June 27, 2011


    4th of July events in Greater Orange

    Metro TALK ______________
    a community service of the
    Greater Orange Communities Organization

    Orange’s 3rd of July Fireworks show in its 16th year

    Greater Orange kicks off Independence Day early with the City of Orange’s 16th Annual "3rd of July" Celebration. Begun in 1996, the 3rd of July festival has grown into one of Orange County’s biggest Independence Day centered events that includes live music, inflatable activities and that famous Orange hometown festival atmosphere all leading up to the grand finale in Fred Kelly Stadium featuring the Orange Community Master Chorale followed by Greater Orange’s most spectacular fireworks choreographed to music.

    The 16th Annual 3rd of July Celebration will take place Sunday, July 3, 2011 at 4 p.m. at Orange Unified’s Fred Kelly Stadium at 3920 East Spring Street, Orange, CA 92869.

    Fred Kelly Stadium’s artificial turf requires special rules for everyone to enjoy. The following rules when attending the July 3rd activities apply:

    • Only blanket seating is allowed on the field.

    • Strollers, wheelchairs, wagons, or other wheeled items are only permitted in designated areas.

    • Lawn Chairs, food, drinks, seeds, gum, popcorn, hard-soled or high-heeled shoes are prohibited on the field.

    On-site staff may deem items not currently on this list as harmful to the field. If so informed, please help us by not bringing those items onto the field.

    Tickets for the 16th Annual "3rd of July" Celebration are $7 for adults and children over two years old. Tickets can be purchased at the Orange Community Services Department, at the Orange Civic Center complex at 230 East Chapman Avenue (corner of Grand Street) through Friday, July 1, 2011. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the event.

    For more information please call the City of Orange Special Events Hotline at (714) 744 -7278.

    Anaheim Hills to Host City of Anaheim’s Official 4th of July celebration
    Anaheim Hills, a Greater Orange community, will play host for its city’s official 4th of July Celebration with a full day of activities including a return of the 4th of July Parade. The day starts at Orange Unified’s Canyon Hills High School with the returning Firecracker 5/10K run 2K Walk beginning at 5:30 am. Registration is available online at through June 28. Also beginning at 5am and continuing throughout the morning is an accompanying Health Fair at the campus.
    Beginning at 8 am until 10:30 am in the Canyon Hills H.S. cafeteria will be the Anaheim Hills Rotary Club’s famous Pancake Breakfast that includes hotcakes, sausage, orange juice, coffee and a whole lot of visiting with neighbors and friends all for only $4.00 for adults and teens and $3.00 for kids under 12 years old, with the proceeds going toward the annual fireworks show.

    This year the Yankee Doodle Dog Show also returns at 10 a.m. to Canyon High School. There are six fabulous dog-gone-good categories: Best Dressed Dog, Cutest Dog (35 lb. and under), Best Trick, Owner/Doggie Look-a-like, Bigger Cutest Dog (36 lb. and over) and Yankee Doodle Dog. There is a $7.00 entry fee per dog for the first category entered and $5.00 for each additional category. Prizes and awards given and the winners get to ride in the Firecracker July 4th Parade.

    At 3:00 pm the 4th of July Parade returns after a one year hiatus starting at Canyon High School and making is way to Peralta Park at 115 N Pinney Dr., Anaheim Hills. The parade starts at Canyon High and proceeds west on Santa Ana Canyon Rd ending at Pinney Drive.

    This year, shuttle busses are planned to run from 5:00 pm until 10:30 pm every 15 minutes from the Anaheim Hills Crossroads Shopping Center to Peralta Park and from the park back to shopping center.

    Metro TALK is a community service of the
    Greater Orange Communities Organization
    Ecast on the
    A 21st Century Communications System

    Produced by the
    Orange Communication System /OCS/

    Wednesday, June 22, 2011


    Smith announces run for Orange Mayor

    eLECTION Watch 2011
    an Orange Net News Special News and Analysis Series
    Tita Smith announces run for Orange Mayor in 2012

    Orange Mayor Pro-Tem Teresa “Tita” Smith announced her candidacy for Orange Mayor in 2012. The less than surprise announcement comes more than 16 months before the November 2012 election and less than a year after a bruising mayoral election that saw Orange Mayor Carolyn V. Cavecche defeat Orange Councilman Jon Dumitru for a third two-year term in November of 2010. That campaign was one of the most negative campaigns in Orange history that caused a voter backlash against Dumitru.

    In 2012, Cavecche’s two-year mayoral term will be up as well as both Smith’s and Dumitru’s four year council terms. In an email to supporters on Tuesday June 22nd, Smith announced her expected run. Outlining an economic platform, Smith wrote:

    “In today's economic environment, there are issues and decisions facing our city today that will have long-lasting impacts beyond our generation. We must uphold Orange's values and our commitment to protecting Orange taxpayers. At the same time, we must guarantee excellent public safety and infrastructure maintenance that will continue to make Orange attractive for new businesses and new families.”

    In announcing her candidacy, lifelong Orange resident Smith also a long time Pitcher Park Community Foundation member chose that quintessential Orange landmark for her campaign kick-off on July 7, 2011 from 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm. Pitcher Park is located at the corner of Cambridge and Olive Streets. The campaign event is free.

    For more information about Smith CLICK ON: Smith Philosophy
    Or Smith BIO
    or email:

    eLECTION Watch 2011
    is an independent news service of /O/N/N/
    “Independent Local Insight”
    Ecast on the

    A 21st Century Communications System
    Produced by the
    Orange Communication System /OCS/

    Thursday, June 16, 2011



    Governor Jerry Brown's message on his veto of the Democratic passed state budget
    CLICK on video or read text below:

    I am returning Senate Bill 69 and Assembly Bill 98 without my signature.
    In January, I presented a balanced budget solution with a mix of deep spending cuts and temporary tax extensions subject to voter approval. My plan would put these extended revenues in a lockbox, ensuring that they are only used to protect education and public safety. It would also address California’s long term fiscal crisis by substantially paying down the $35 billion wall of debt built up over the last decade.

    Yet Republicans in the Legislature blocked the right of the people to vote on this honest, balanced budget.

    Meanwhile, Democrats in the Legislature made valiant efforts to address California’s budget crisis by enacting $11 billion in painful cuts and other solutions. I commend them for their tremendous efforts to balance the budget in the absence of Republican cooperation.

    Unfortunately, the budget I have received is not a balanced solution. It continues big deficits for years to come and adds billions of dollars of new debt. It also contains legally questionable maneuvers, costly borrowing and unrealistic savings. Finally, it is not financeable and therefore will not allow us to meet our obligations as they occur.

    We can -- and must -- do better. A balanced budget is critical to our economic recovery. I am, once again, calling on Republicans to allow the people of California to vote on tax extensions for a balanced budget and significant reforms. They should also join Democrats in supporting job creation and ending tax breaks for out-of-state companies. If they continue to obstruct a vote, we will be forced to pursue deeper and more destructive cuts to schools and public safety -- a tragedy for which Republicans will bear full responsibility.

    Sunday, June 12, 2011


    Traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall to be in Orange for Father's Day weekend

    METRO Talk
    a community service of the
    Greater Orange Community Orgainization

    Traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall to be in Orange for Father’s Day Weekend

    The Traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial and Museum will be at Yorba Park ( at Chapman Ave and the 55 Freeway) in Orange June 15-June 19 (Father’s Day) on display for 24 hours a day. Admission is free.

    One of several traveling ½ scale replicas of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C., the traveling exhibit is called “The Wall that Heals”. The traveling exhibits visit hundreds of communities across the U.S. each year allowing thousands of veterans and others to visit the wall within their own communities. Part of the mission of the Wall is to match names of those killed or missing in action to photographs of those who served.

    The City of Orange Yorba Park display is sponsored by Vision 2 Victory, a group that helps veterans from all wars to fulfill requested “dreams”, much like the Make A Wish foundation does for ill children.

    One of the goals in remembering the Vietnam War (one of the most controversial wars in U.S. history) with a physical memorial was to do so by avoiding controversy with any commentary on the war itself. However, the actual design of the memorial became controversial. The winning design for the memorial was chosen from over 1400 entries submitted in a national contest. The wining designer was Maya Ying Lin, a 21 year old architecture student at Yale University. The unconventional design quickly became controversial especially among veterans with the black stone wall memorial being nicknamed the “black gash of shame”. Many early prominent supporters of the memorial withdrew their support. President Ronald Regan’s Secretary of the Interior James Watt refused to issue a building permit for the memorial.

    With the simplicity of the design, a black granite wall, in the shape of a V with the names of the American military dead and missing inscribed, Maya Ying Lin the designer hoped that "these names, seemingly infinite in number, [would] convey the sense of overwhelming numbers, while unifying these individuals into a whole.” Once the Wall was unveiled in 1982 with the original 58,175 names, most of the critics, and Americans came to appreciate the simple beauty and emotional power of the wall.

    One of those in attendance at the 1982 dedication ceremonies of the Vietnam Veteran Memorial in Washington D.C. was John Devitt of Stockton, California. The Vietnam veteran was so moved by what he saw as the healing nature of the memorial that he decided to make a transportable version of the Wall- a “Traveling Wall” for those who could not travel to the memorial in the nation’s Capital. Devitt established the Vietnam Combat Veterans organization using his own finances to fund the building of the first half-sized replica of the Wall. It was first displayed in Tyler Texas in 1984. The waiting list for the Moving Wall quickly grew that Vietnam Combat Veterans built two more Walls. Now there are several that move throughout the United States attracting millions of visitors. All were paid for through private contributions.

    Traveling with the Wall is a Traveling Museum and Information Center. It is the goal of the exhibit to serve as a resource for people to learn about friends and loved ones lost in the war. With the use of scanner technology, visitors can upload photos and remembrances of loved ones on the Wall. They are saved and forwarded to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Education Center in Washington D.C. Part of the mission of the Traveling Walls is to put a face to all the names on the Memorial and to tell their stories so they will not be forgotten. Over 1,200 local Orange County Vietnam Veterans listed on the Wall still do not have a photograph associated with their name.

    The controversy over the design led to additions to the overall memorial area on the Mall in Washington D.C.. A bronze statue called The Three Soldiers (often called The Three Serviceman) was added as a compromise, as was the statue called the Vietnam Women’s Memorial which depicts three uninformed women with a wounded soldier. In 2004, a Memorial plaque was added in a block of black carved granite. It is inscribed: "In memory of the men and women who served in the Vietnam War and later died as a result of their service. We honor and remember their sacrifice."

    For More information on Vision 2 Victory CLICK ON: V2V

    To volunteer to sign up for a shift at Yorba Park to help guard the Wall and assist those who are visiting CLICK ON: WALL SIGN UP

    Tuesday, June 07, 2011


    Ledesma wants new legal team negotiator

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    a news service of
    Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Independent insight into OUSD

    Ledesma wants new legal team negotiator,
    Singer questions legal expenses as fees double

    At the May 12, 2011 Orange Unified School Board meeting, OUSD Board President Rick Ledesma recommended that OUSD change legal representatives for negotiations with its employee groups. Ledesma asked the OUSD Board for consensus to have staff ask for a quote from law firm Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Rudd & Romo to be the legal representative for the district in employee negotiations replacing longtime firm Parker & Covert. Ledesma stated it was “good business sense” to occasionally rotate firms for a fresh perspective. While Ledesma was getting the consensus of nodding heads from the Trustees, only Trustee Kathy Moffat spoke up with concerns. Moffat, who stated that she had no objection asking for quotes, however did object to only one firm being considered for the contract to negotiate on behalf of the District and also wanted some objected criteria established. Moffat also thanked long time OUSD Attorney Spencer Covert for his service to OUSD.

    Later in the meeting, Trustee Diane Singer continued her ongoing mission to comb over the Consent Item Agenda legal fees asking the other Trustees and staff to stop and think about the amount of taxpayer money that Orange Unified pays out in legal fees. Singer wanted “to take a comprehensive look” at whether in these times of fiscal crisis the District is doing everything it can to avoid getting into a position that it needs to use a lawyer. Singer used Special Education as an example of a place where the District might avoid the need for lawyers by listening to parents earlier in the process before attorneys get involved. Trustee Mark Wayland on prompting from Ledesma offered his experience with the issue. Wayland shared that when he first was elected to the Board he too tried to tackle the legal money issue by investigating the possibility of using an in-house attorney. Wayland reported that he found that because of dozens of legal specializations having one attorney do everything is impossible. Wayland stated that even the City of Orange, with its own City Attorney, is forced to farm out legal services to law firms specializing in certain areas of the law. Wayland used the example of going to a divorce attorney vs. going to a property attorney. Trustee Kathy Moffat suggested that a comparison between OUSD’s legal costs and a comparable school district be might helpful. Staff agreed to be more descriptive in routine legal requests that establish accounts that are used to pay for legal fees over a period of time. Those items pulled from the Consent Agenda by Singer were held over until this month’s meeting. OUSD President Rick Ledesma characterized her concerns over legal costs as part of “a long tradition” in Orange Unified of questioning legal fees.

    The June 9th OUSD Agenda includes Information Item 13A:Legal/Services Fees (Agenda Page 32). In the item, OUSD Staff will explain how District departments “estimate the potential legal service expenditures” to have purchase orders in place for the OUSD fiscal year. With the held over items from last month that Singer pulled, plus the legal items from this month, OUSD Trustees will approved legal fees in this calendar year that will be twice as much from those legal fees approved last calendar year. This year’s initial requests of $760,000 for legal fees are double last year’s approved $385,000 in legal fee funds (see below).

    It is the Board action to approve legal fee requests that Orange Net News has reported since 2005 every calendar year in its popular Inside the OUSD Budget feature (see below). That ONN feature is used by the public to compare multiple legal requests in a single year and gives a quick reference for comparison. In past years, the OUSD legal expenses requested in the initial “estimated” request by OUSD Staff (and approved by the Trustees) have been used up before the end of the year. Then the OUSD Staff goes back to the OUSD Board for more legal funding. Those requests can be clearly seen in years that this happens with Inside the OUSD Budget. It is that same feature that clearly showed the millions of educational dollars that OUSD previously wasted on the Consultant Culture that OUSD had maintained under previous administrations until OUSD Superintendent Dr. Dreier began using “in-house” experts necessitated by the current fiscal crisis, but producing far better results than under expensive educational consultants.

    OUSD to Re-Organize to save $200,000
    In an effort to further save $200,000, the June 9, 2011 agenda Action Item 12 F (Agenda page 30-31) lists 24 personnel, title, job reclassifications and eliminations. Among the changes a re-introduction of the Elementary Assistant Principal position and elimination of Director of Communication and Technology position.

    Budget resolutions
    With the California State Legislature expected to vote to reject the state budget until after the Friday June 10, 2011 pre-release of the new redistricting lines for the California State Legislature, OUSD Trustees are expected to approve the June 9 Action Items 12D (Agenda page 11-26) and Action Item 12E (27-29). Item 12D includes a paragraph from the Orange County Department of Education that states $9 million dollars in further cuts might be needed if Governor Brown’s proposed tax extensions fail. Item 12E is an annual legal resolution (that has yet to be court tested) on reserving the right to cut salaries after the school year starts.

    INSIDE the June 9th AGENDA
    Action Item 12A- Orange Unified Education Association negotiation proposal
    Action Item 12B–California School Employees Association #67 negotiation proposal
    Information Item 13B– Update on drug dog program

    INSIDE the OUSD Budget
    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2011: $760,000
    2011 Attorney Fee tally
    4/21/11 Parker & Covert $ 85,000
    6/09/11 Dannis,Wolvier, Kelly $ 30,000
    6/09/11 Keenan & Associates $ 20,000
    6/09/11 Harbottle Law Group $ 75,000
    6/09/11 Atkinson, Andelson, Loya $150,000
    6/09/11 Parker & Covert $200,000
    6/09/11 Parker & Covert $100,000
    6/09/11 Parker & Covert $100,000
    TOTAL $760,000

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2010: $ 395,000

    2010 Attorney Fee Tally:
    5/27/10 Dannis, Woliver & Kelley $ 30,000
    5/27/10 Parker & Covert $ 55,000
    5/27/10 Parker & Covert (to 6/11) $300,000
    Misc Fees
    12/2/10 2010 CSBA-Trustees and Superintendent: $ 10,000
    TOTAL $ 395,000

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2009: $1,041,000*

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2008: $901,200.00*

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2007: $704,090.00*

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2006: $849,717.00*
    2006 Administrative Conference/Travel: Total $ 18,317 *

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2005: $1,008,300

    * JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to
    APPROVE OUSD Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2005: $978,300.00

    Former Superintendent Godley’s Retirement Bonus running total
    (beginning 8/2008): $38,930.00*

    * The Godley Retirement Bonus presented here is an estimate of the amount in “bonus retirement” accrued since the Superintendent’s retirement on 6/30/08 using a 6% lifetime formula calculated here at $1210 a month since 8/08. The actual retirement plan the former OUSD Superintendent opted to take is not public information and the figures presented are only as an estimate of the taxpayer costs after the OUSD trustees voted against an amendment to exclude Godley from the retirement program. The on-going estimated figure is presented as a reminder to the community of the high cost in educational tax dollars the OUSD Board vote to allow the former Superintendent to participate in the 6% retirement incentive cost the OUSD education community in tax dollars. Godley retired from OUSD on June 30, 2008 after he worked for the school district for a little over five years.

    Next OUSD Board Meeting Thursday June 09, 2011. For more information

    CLICK ON: JUNE 2011

    OUSD CLOSED SESSION STARTS 5:30 PM, Regular Session: 7:00 pm
    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE
    Independent insight into OUSD
    is an independent news service of /O/N/N/

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    Greater Orange News Service is a community service of the Orange Communication System /OCS/, the communications arm of the Greater Orange Community Orgainization