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Mailbag: Why the costly fight over a $5 sign?

April 01, 2014

The Daily Pilot reported that Steven Charles White, accused of tearing up a campaign sign before the 2012 election, had been acquitted after a jury trial ("Accused sign vandal is found not guilty," March 28).

First, let me say that I don't condone the destruction of campaign signs by anyone, regardless of which candidate or ballot measure is involved.

But the amount of attention given to this single $5 placard seems a bit out of proportion, especially given the number of signs for all candidates and positions that were destroyed citywide. I'm surprised the Orange County district attorney allocated resources to such a minor case.

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An earlier Pilot article reported that White's wife had come home that night to find "six police officers outside her home along with [Councilman Steve] Mensinger and Mayor Jim Righeimer, a political ally."

What were the councilman and mayor doing at the scene of a police action? Would any citizen accompany the police to the house of someone suspected of vandalism? I think that would be most inappropriate.

One wonders if the councilmen's involvement, that night or later, might have led to the vigor with which this case was pursued.

I hope the city and district attorney are as vigorous in pursuing and prosecuting those involved in the inappropriate expenditure of tens of thousands of dollars in taxpayer money on the 60th anniversary party.

Perry Valantine

Costa Mesa

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New trash bin rules won't work

I was surprised to read of the Newport Beach City Council vote setting rules that require the storage of the new trash cans in garages ("City code updated to fit new trash contract," March 25).

Letter writer Harlan Lassiter hit on several points illustrating the impracticality and inconvenience of this edict, and I agree with him ("New trash bins don't fit in yard or garage," March 28). And I believe that a vast majority of residents of Corona del Mar would also oppose this ruling. I join him in hoping for reconsideration of this unworkable regulation.

Jack Couffer

Corona del Mar

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City needs to rethink road decisions

I reside close to Irvine Boulevard on Holiday Road in Newport Beach. Even though Holiday Road meets the incredibly strict city requirements for speed-reduction measures, the city didn't help my neighbors and me with safety issues related to traffic flow on Holiday Road.

Perhaps city officials were too busy closing lanes at Coast Highway and Dover Drive to make life easier for a developer.

The city needs to put its residents first and stop unnecessary lane closures. Even worse, the city has Dover closed completely on one side when there could easily be one lane in each direction on the east side of the closed section.

Robert M. Koop Jr.

Newport Beach

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