President’s Corner — August, 2019

Greetings Mesa Verde! As a result of the board’s unanimous vote, I have been appointed to be MVCI’s president for the next two-year term. The last two years have seen significant progress in the endeavors of the organization and can be seen in Bob Juneman’s final message to the community, the July “PC.” While I’m at it, I want to sincerely thank Bob for his marvelous stewardship, and only hope that I can be as successful in the upcoming term.

Going forward, there will be several things I’d like to see us accomplish as your board. But for the purposes of this first message to the community, I want to focus on one issue: Membership! As has been shared several times by Bob and all the members of the board, membership is our lifeblood. We are not a homeowner association in the sense most people understand. There are no mandatory CC&R-based (covenants, conditions and restrictions) HOA fees for common areas, external building surfaces, roofs, pools, etc.

Think of MVCI instead as more of a civic association. All board members are volunteers and all dues collected are also voluntary. The funds the organization takes in allow us to advocate on behalf of the residents with the City Council and the various city commissions, Police and Fire Departments, School Board, Water and Sanitation Districts, to ensure our collective voices are heard. These dollars also help to defray the costs of our Annual Meeting, the MVCI City Council Candidate Forum, newsletters, surveys, the MVCI website and projects associated with beautification, like the entry signs to the community.

I want to appeal to every homeowner in Mesa Verde to join MVCI! With roughly 3000 homes in our community, there is no reason that we can’t get twenty percent membership. If you’re a member, ask your neighbors. I have seen dozens of new homeowners move into the “Upper Bird” streets just in the last few years…ask them! Membership is only twenty bucks a year…4 or 5 visits to Starbucks!

What’s it gonna take to get you to participate?

As part of this task, I will be producing a video, with the working title, “This is Mesa Verde” to help tell the story. We will create a YouTube channel to help communicate with internet-savvy folks. We just formed a partnership with the new magazine, Mesa Verde Living, which is mailed monthly to the aforementioned 3000 homes. To simplify signing up and renewing memberships, we are looking at online methods and will have a robust solution chosen in the next 60 days.

Are you with me? According to a few of our veteran board members, our membership roster has been as high as 500, so the 20% ask (which would be around 600 members) should be “do-able.”

Let’s do this! To get to the membership application, click here.

See you again next month!

~Terry

Special “Small Cell Technology” Study Session

Small Cell Facilities Study Session/Open House with the City Council

On Tuesday, August 13, 2019 from 5-7:30 p.m.

To everyone interested in how the City of Costa Mesa is going to manage the small cell technology, both in the present and in the future, this meeting is for You!

Due to the high public interest on this topic, on Tuesday, August 13, 2019 from 5-7:30 p.m. at City Hall, the City Council has scheduled a study session dedicated to discussing small cell facilities and Costa Mesa’s Municipal Code.  Residents are hoping the Council will adopt municipal code changes in the form of a wireless ordinance which will allow the City, and hence the residents, to have some control over how the federally mandated telecommunication system(s) are employed.  This means not just how they are approved and where, but the long range management of this technology and the new technologies yet to come, including 5G and beyond.  

Don’t you want to know what technology is coming into your neighborhood and around your local schools? Will there be dozens or hundreds of these Small Cell Facilities? How will they look?  Will it be an improvement to the look of our city or not? Who is paying for all of this and the maintenance of it? What is the maintenance? Who is responsible? How often is the equipment checked for staying within Federal requirements? And how is it checked, in person or remotely by computer? These are just some of the questions we hope the City’s Municipal Code will clearly state.  We strongly encourage interested residents to come and participate in this Study Session/Open House.

President’s Corner — July, 2019

 

Hello Mesa Verde, welcome to the dog days of summer. Every year about this time I wonder why we haven’t installed air conditioning in our home. Then, about the time I get ready to make the call, the beautiful Fall weather arrives, and another year goes by.

On occasion I am asked, “what exactly is Mesa  Verde?”  Our Board of Directors defines Mesa Verde as bounded by the River on the west, the 405 Freeway to the north, Harbor Blvd on the east, and the north edge of Fairview Park and the public golf course on the south, including Mesa Verde Collection, 27 Seventy Five, Longwood Greens, and Azulon. More importantly, it is our home, a wonderful community in which to enjoy our lives in comfort and harmony. A treasure to be protected and cherished. We hope you agree.

As I mentioned last month, Karla Stagman, has joined us as our Beautification Chair. Karla and her husband bought their home on Alabama Circle in 2000, and love life in our beautiful community. “I believe that with neighbors working together, Mesa Verde will continue to be one of the top neighborhoods in our area.”  Karla sees her role as an opportunity to collaborate with all of our members to bring a voice to all of Mesa Verde. As a local realtor, Karla sees the “power of true community to enhance the beauty and value of our properties.“ If we raise consciousness about community appearance, it will keep Mesa Verde economically viable and “Beautification will become a fun project.”

There is a new order of things in Costa Mesa. Last November brought a “sea change” to   how our city is governed. Our City Council increased from five to seven members. We changed from an “at large” to a six-district voting system, with an “at large” Mayor. We are finding that the costs of running a growing city are increasing faster that the revenue to pay for it, exacerbated  by the exploding unfunded pension liability, now close to $300,000,000. To quote from the 2019-2020 budget message, “The past six years have marked unparalleled prosperity for Costa Mesa and the recovery from the Great Recession has continued, becoming the longest period of economic growth in history. During that time, the City has also been faced with challenges such as addressing homeless issues and defending itself in lawsuits filed by sober living facilities.”  What this all means is that we need to be prepared for tougher times ahead and be patient.

5G technology is coming, and with it some new concerns. Our Board member and Treasurer, Carri Lang, has been “Bird dogging” this issue for us…click here to see her update and to see the actual letter sent to the City Council under my signature, click here.

Finally, as my term as President expires soon, this is my final President’s Corner. At our August Board meeting we will elect a new leader. Looking back over the past several years, the first thing that comes to mind is how fast time flies! What has our Board of Directors accomplished and how has our association grown? Let’s take a look:

~ We increased our Board from 9 to 11 members.
~ Established the position of Data Manager
~ Initiated videotaping of our annual meetings, viewable on our website HERE
~ Sponsored our traditional Candidate Forum in 2018
~ Initiated our Annual Neighborhood Picnic in 2018, continued in 2019
~ Held first public information meeting jointly with the Newport Mesa School Board and local school principals.
~ Replaced or reconditioned our Mesa Verde gateway signs
~ Advocated in support of the Tanager Drive neighbors to help arrive at an equitable solution to the proposed bike trail
~ Established a Mesa Verde Bulletin Board on our website for the use of our residents
~ Established a close working relationship with our police department to reduce speeding and traffic violations in Mesa Verde.
~ Completed several neighborhood surveys and reported results
~ Enhanced our website and broadened our social media coverage to include Facebook (check here) and Nextdoor (go here).
~ Published four newsletters, mailed to over 3000 Mesa Verde residents
~ Established our “Lifetime Membership.”
~ Initiated our Mesa Verde Volunteer Group (If you have a little extra time to devote, please consider volunteering)
~ Created our first self-guided “Water Wise Garden Tour”

Alas, my biggest disappointment is that we have not significantly increased our membership. We’ve added several new members, including seven lifetimes, but quite a few old members have not renewed. Why not? That’s a question we need to address. And, we will!

As I trust you can know, most of this costs money, and your membership dues and donations are our only source of revenue. Can you guess what I’m asking you to do? Click here and go directly to the membership app.

My thanks to our Board of Directors for  granting me the honor and privilege of serving as your President these two years, and to all of you for your support and encouraging words. A special “well done” to the tremendous help from our volunteer group.

I know that you will accord our new President your continued support.

Respectfully,
Bob

President’s Corner — April, 2019

I hope you all had a Happy Easter and that the Bunny was good to you. Now, as we move on into Spring, let’s talk a bit about what’s going on in Mesa Verde.

First, at our Annual Meeting in March, we elected and welcomed our newest Board member, Geri Hidalgo, as our Data Manager. And, thanks again to Bill Burke for his exciting narrative and video of his mountain climbing exploits. We gained 31 new MVCI members last fiscal year ending March 31st; 15 regular, 12 platinum, and 4 lifetime.
Our membership dues are our lifeblood, our only source of revenue, so we again solicit your support in your own membership and recruiting your friends and neighbors.

Things are moving along at “The Shops at Mesa Verde”. Carmen Twork at C. J. Segerstrom and Sons reports that Dylan Blue Nail Spa has officially opened next to the Broken Yolk Cafe. Dylan Blue is offering 30% off all their services for a limited time according to Carmen, so check,’em out.

Descanso Mexican Restaurant was just named one of Orange Coast Magazine’s Best New Restaurants. I’ve been there- it’s nice.

Negotiations are underway for the space next to Descanso’s for a new restaurant, to be announced in the coming months. Stay tuned.

Donna Stapleton presented to the MVCI board an overview of a unique musical instrument project being installed at the Mesa Verde branch of the Public Library, under the auspices of the “Friends of the Costa Mesa Library.” “Freenotes” instruments were developed by Grammy winner musician Richard Cooke in 1995 to help people of all ages experience the freedom of playing music instinctively without worrying about wrong notes. Besides being aurally pleasing, the four instruments are visually pleasing. They will be available daily and year-round. Playing music in the library/park setting will be a community-building opportunity that encourages creativity, self-confidence, stress release, curiosity, and joy. The instruments are finely tuned with carefully chosen notes that invite easy improvisation with little musical skill. To get a short sample of what this will sound like, you can watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=coukN9bWh2o

“Freenotes” are being subsidized by local public and private funding and anyone interested in supporting this endeavor should contact Donna at stapleton4@sbcglobal.net.

Our Costa Mesa Fire Department sponsors the Community Emergency Response Team (C.E.R.T.), designed to aid our first responders in emergencies, and also to serve our community in a variety of other ways. This team consists of citizen volunteers, and led by the exceptionally capable and effervescent Brenda Emrick, CMFD’s Fire Protection Specialist and Community Education expert.  I had the distinct honor of serving on this team for six years, under Brenda’s leadership, and it was an exceptional and educational experience. I encourage you to check out their website www.costamesacert.org. The next class is scheduled for May 17-19. C.E.R.T. will be a hosting “Preparedness in the Park” series in the Fall and are looking for neighbors to share preparedness skills and activities. Brenda can be reached at brendaemrick@costamesaca.gov.

One Metro West is a proposed mixed commercial/residential project destined for the NW section of Costa Mesa, north of the 405 freeway and east of Harbor Blvd. The City Council has approved going forward with further study and review, and because of the size of this project, would require approval of voters at an upcoming election. At this juncture, MVCI has taken no position, pro or con, but we urge you to become familiar with this proposed project, and the effects it could have on Mesa Verde, both positive and negative. You can see a digital brochure for the development here: http://onemetrowestcm.com/ and the synopsis presented to City Council here: http://ftp.costamesaca.gov/costamesaca/council/agenda/2019/2019-03-05/NB-1-Attach-1.pdf

**SAVE THE DATE** MVCI’s second annual neighborhood picnic has now been set! The date is Saturday, May 18th and will again be on the lawn in front of the Mesa Verde United Methodist Church, from 11:00am to 3:00pm. Details will follow, so keep an eye on this website for more information.

You are always encouraged to communicate with us via our website

www.mesaverdecommunity.org, or e-mail me, bob@juneman.com.

Let us hear from you!

Best,
Bob

President’s Corner — October, 2018

Hello neighbors,

Halloween approaches, but with this warm weather I wonder about the frost on the pumpkin. Maybe it will be a nice evening for the trick or treaters. Got your costume ready?

Our recent candidates forum was very successful. All ten candidates for City Council and Mayor participated, and all performed well. I believe our audience gained a better perspective on the issues facing our community. You may view the entire forum by clicking here.

Our work with the CMPD on traffic issues continues to bring results. Citations for speeding and other violations have increased since the beginning of greater vigilance. Thank you Lt. Bakkila and the traffic division. We will continue to pursue this effort and report to you periodically on the results. Please keep us informed of particular hot spots. Be specific as to time, location and type of violation. To give you an idea of the magnitude of this effort, here are some stats on citations so far this year:

Mesa Verde Drive            20
Adams                             452
Baker                                182
Oriole                                   7
Tanager                              71
Gisler                                 26

The recent grand opening of Fire Station One was a huge success. The facility is a beauty and fully operational. Just another example of “keeping Mesa Verde Safe”. Hats off to our City staff, Chief Stefano, and the CMFD for pulling off the building of this great new asset.

The “Shops at Mesa Verde” are progressing nicely if not quickly. Descanso is scheduled to open the first week of November, and Stylists will open soon with a grand opening set for late November. We will soon see a whole new look for this area.

We are looking for a volunteer “Data Manager” and possible Board member to manage the data base for our growing membership. If interested, please send an email to info@mesaverdecommunity.org, and put “Data Manager” in the subject line.

Finally, thank you and congratulations to Leah Ersoylu, our newest Lifetime member. If you have not renewed your membership for this year (Apr 1 – Mar 31), this is a great time to do so. Click here  to access the application form (PDF).

‘Til next month,
Happy Halloween!

Bob

2018 MVCI Candidate Forum — Epilogue

The 17th Mesa Verde Community Inc. Candidate Forum is in the books! Or, as Geoff West said, “in the can!” Over 100 people were in attendance and all 8 candidates running for City Council seats and both Mayor candidates were present, as well. The Forum was recorded by Dane Bora’s team at CMTV and will be available for viewing in a few days; we’re told it’ll likely be Wednesday the 10th.

The candidates were prepared and ready to go! Our goal was to provide an environment where the candidates would be able to respond to all questions, in a timed format. Feedback after the session was that the candidates felt they were treated fairly and allowed to convey their take on the important issues in and around the city. Mesa Verde didn’t have a candidate as we are in District 1, but that seat will be coming open in 2020.

Here are a few pictures from the event!

Photo credit: Spencer Grant, LA Times (Daily Pilot)

Photo credits: Stacia Beckman, MVCI

Photo credits: Geoff West

Photo credit: CMTV3

Thanks to the candidates and audience for their participation and a special acknowledgment to the MVCI board for the supreme effort in producing the event. A special thanks goes out to Terrilee Stevenson and the good folks at The Crossing for providing a wonderful venue for the Forum!

President’s Corner — September, 2018

It’s that time again – beginning of Fall, kids back in school, and the silly season (elections) is upon us. So, I should begin this month’s President’s Corner by reminding you of our MVCI Candidate Forum, October 4th. It’s a new ball game for Costa Mesa; election of Council members by district, and an independently elected mayor by the electorate at large. All candidates have accepted our invitation to participate, and all residents of Costa Mesa are invited to attend. Please see the detailed notice posted on this website under Neighborhood News.

By now you have received our semi-annual newsletter. Many hours of work by our Board of Directors have gone into this production, and we hope you enjoy it. As always, we appreciate feedback on what you want to see in this publication. A special thank you to our MVCI Volunteers, Gayle Rindge, Cindy Veach, Christine Williamson, Karen Jovanovic, and Ginger Juneman for their help in getting this edition labeled and stickered.

In my August President’s Corner I mentioned our work with the CMPD in identifying and curbing speeding in our neighborhoods. We are already seeing some early results, thanks to Lt. Bakkila and the traffic division. Covert cameras have been placed in strategic locations throughout Mesa Verde. Just a word to the wise: Yes, Costa Mesa can always use some extra revenue, but let’s not donate it through traffic fines!

We are working on a “Town Hall” style forum with our new school board, hopefully in January. We expect that families with school age children will be especially interested in the philosophy and policies of the folks that set the agenda for our teachers. Stay tuned for date and time.

Finally, if you have not yet renewed your membership in MVCI, please do so. A membership form can be downloaded from this website.

‘Til next month, be happy in your work.🤠

Bob

The Tanager Park Tale — Updated Summary

BACKGROUND:   In  April 2017 some buzz started about possible plans for  a public swimming pool and big  parking lots at Tanager Park.  Neighbors were alarmed when a site map appeared  in the  “Updated Open Space Master Plan of Parks and Recreation”  prepared  by a consultant to the City.  The report would be reviewed by the Parks and Recreation Commission (PRC) on April 27.  City Staff  recommended  approval of the report and all the projects it contained.

Tanager Park neighbors got organized, got educated on the issue, held a neighborhood planning meeting, met with the Chairman of the Parks Commission, circulated a petition.  A  neighbor came to a Mesa Verde Community, Inc. board meeting and shared  their concern.  As a result, the MVCI Board of Directors voted to send a letter to the PRC in support of  leaving the park alone.

UPDATE:  Because of the neighbors’ organized and articulate response,  the PRC voted 5-0  to remove every reference  to an aquatic facility at Tanager Park before the report was forwarded to the City Council for final approval.

It was a good  night for the neighborhood!   The Tanager  Neighbors did a fantastic job, and Mesa Verde Inc. was privileged to help them by sending a letter .

Robin Leffler, MVCI Government Relations Chair

Great News from MVCI President, Robin Leffler!

Update on the Tanager Tale-   All mention of Tanager Park as an “opportunity site”   for an aquatic facility had already been removed from the report.  In fact all the other “opportunity sites” were removed as well.  The Parks and Recreation Commission voted  5-0 to recommend the revised report to the City Council.  As soon as that was done, the commissioners had a few things they wanted to include or change.  Commissioner Liz McNabb moved that the addition of 2 tennis courts slated for 2020 also be completely removed.  That passed 5-0 as well.

It was a good night for the neighborhood!  You guys did a fantastic job-

Robin