COSTA MESA — Standing on the corner of Estancia Park off Mesa Verde Drive, someone commented to City Councilman Steve Mensinger that the city's sign boasting "Renew Costa Mesa — Your Tax Dollars at Work" seemed an awful like the Obama administration's ubiquitous road signs about the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
The only difference, Mensinger and Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer joked, was that Costa Mesa's latest public works project wasn't paid for with borrowed money.
But the City Council's two newest members — Righeimer was elected in November; Mensinger was appointed in January — couldn't deny the messages were similar: Here's how your money is working for you.
The city is repaving more than 100 Mesa Verde streets this year and another 60 to 80 next year in another part of town. Altogether, the projects total about $11.5 million in gas tax and Measure M revenues.
Costa Mesa is spending nearly twice as much in the next two years on capital improvements, including park maintenance and transportation enhancements, than it did in the previous two years.