A Message from Councilman Weiss

For more News and updates from Councilmember Weiss can be found regularly on his website at https://www.georgeweisscitycouncil.org/. Check back weekly.

Hello Fellow Residents,

The March 9th City Council Meeting considered a full agenda of items affecting residents. Here’s a summary; For more details these items go to my homepage:

Laguna Beach Neighborhood And Environmental Protection Plan Passes 5-0
This wide-ranging piece of legislation provides solid programs for improving the quality of life for residents and the community.

Proclamation Recognizes Arnold Hanno’s 99th Birthday;
Mr. Hanno sponsored one of the first ballot initiatives in California history.

Laguna Canyon Foundation Request For Naming Rights Agreement Passes 5-0
To acknowledge a one million dollar donation, the Council voted unanimously to approve naming the Laguna Canyon Foundation headquarters site “The Michael and Tricia Berns Preserve.”

Trolley Service To Return, 2021 Summer Parking Management Plan Passes 5-0
Good news: The trolleys are likely to be back in operation along Coast Highway and into Laguna Canyon Road starting on June 25.

City Council Censures Peter Blake – Vote 4-0
The City Council voted 4-0 (Councilman Blake abstaining) to censure Mr. Blake for violations of the City’s Rules of Decorum and Civility.

Thanks and feel free to email me or call me to discuss anything that migjt be on your mind,

George
949-295-0832

Hello Fellow Residents,

I am posting legislation being considered and decisions made by City Council on my new website. www.georgeweisscitycouncil.org

It’s worth taking a look at for a quick recap of some of the key issues currently being discussed at City Council meetings and for my position on those topics. It also has some quick links to City Government website pages and a current events story on the proposed Rivian Theater.

Open Letter On Councilmember Blake’s Conduct To Residents

Dear City Council,
RE: City Council Agenda Item #18; March 9, 2021

VIEW VIDEO EVIDENCE; SEE ATTACHED
I support Agenda Item #18 to vote in favor of the censorship of Council member Peter Blake to enforce civility policy adopted in 2019. The City Council & City Manager must enforce a reasonable Code of Conduct to restore a professional tone of respect & civility in Laguna Beach City Council chambers. The continued reprehensible conduct and vile outbursts by Council Member Peter Blake often heard interrupting speakers has become intolerable & wholly disrespectful conduct directed toward members of the public. View video below.

It is important to revisit to witness the attitude & reaction by Peter Blake after he listened to his own recorded voicemail. Note that Peter Blake begins to interrupt speaker and then smiles & laughs, appearing to take great pleasure and pride after hearing his infamous vile profanity & threats made directly by Council Member Peter Blake that was left on the voicemail of resident after he took office.

As a matter of public record, the threatening comment & vile profanity left on the voicemail recording was played to City Council during Public Comment in LB City Council chambers.

Unfortunately, Mr Blake does not appear the least bit ashamed of his conduct. Blake appears to have become emboldened over time and his conduct has become increasingly worse for the public to endure.

Mr Peter Blake has demonstrated on multiple occasions that he lacks the character and is unfit to serve in public office. Peter Blake has regularly bullied & intimidated women who speak to oppose his views. Members of the public, especially women, fear being threatened, denigrated and ridiculed by City Council member Peter Blake.

Please restore civility to City Council Chambers and censor the disrespectful language by enforcing the LB Code of Conduct during Public Meetings.

Lorene Laguna

Council Moves To Censure Councilman Peter Blake

Resident Peter Blake was elected to the LB City Council in the November 2018 election. He took office in January, 2019. Since that time, friction began to develop between Councilman Blake and LB constituents over his verbal outbursts including professional and personal insults and overall aggressive behavior towards residents when they spoke publicly during city council meetings. The city council, city manager and the city attorney began to receive numerous complaints from residents who expressed fear of being verbally attacked by Councilmember Blake during meetings and shared their feelings that our Council Chambers now felt like a hostile government environment. Some residents stated that they felt as though they were also being insulted and harassed by Councilman Blake in emails from their communications sent directly to other council members.

After months of public turmoil, in September 2019, it became necessary for the LB City Council to create and adopt the City Decorum & Civility Policy. Councilman Blake voted for the D&C Policy but since has refused to abide by it and any other governmental conduct order including Roberts Rules of Order relevant to public official conduct.

Blake has rejected all attempts to address the issue and offer city council members and residents relief from such unruly official behavior has prompted an official censure action based upon the guidelines of City Decorum Policy by newly elected City Councilmember George Weiss. This censure resolution will be heard on March 9, 2021.

Note: The March 9, 2021 agenda item, meeting video footage, all constituent written censure related communications and attachments and the final City Council votes and decision will be added to this site following the meeting.

View Censure item #18 video here.

Media coverage on call for Censure of CC Peter Blake

LA TIMES

VOICE OF OC

STUNEWS

DAILY PILOT

OC REGISTER

VOICE OF OC 

LB INDY

STU NEWS

STU NEWS

One example of the disrespect Peter Blake shows for Laguna’s elected officials and residents taken from one of the the above interviews states,

“I’m the only one in a spineless group of council people that stands up and fights back. And yes, I have fought back. And yes, I have at times been brash and I’m proud of it. I have no issues with it whatsoever,” Blake said. “The silent majority in this community, they support me.”

The public pushback about Peter Blake’s behavior has been ongoing for well over two years. Volumes of local public outcry at city council meetings, in local print media and social media platforms exists from various resources such as The Laguna Beach Indy, Stunews, LB/SL Nextdoor, YouTubea, FB and individual private accounts. Other sources will be added to this site as they become available.

LB resident Michael Morris is often a target of Councilman Peter Blake because of his high-level involvement in Laguna Beach civics and his outspoken position on Blake’s behavior. Mr. Morris regularly offers input to the city council on finance and other important issues and is well respected by the community. Mr. Morris is also a founder of Laguna Resident First (LRF), a political action committee formed to give residents a voice regarding major developments and other city impact issues. Video footage on multiple examples of Blake’s in sessions conduct to residents can be viewed here

View an open letter to City Council from Resident Lorene Laguna with video footage of Councilmember Peter Blake’s comments during a council session here

Peter Blake “Mr. Monster” city council vides footage can be viewed here

Here is just a sampling of CC Peter Blake public newspaper exchanges with constituents who have spoken out about his intimidating and behavior.
2019-2021

We are finding that what Laguna Beach constituents are going through with a public official who is a self-proclaimed bully may not be unique. But how it gets handled and resolved is.

What are your thoughts about elected’s behavior? Should they be allowed to degrade voters they have differences with in public and private? Please share your experiences with us.

Opportunity for Public Input Regarding New City Manager at Three Upcoming Listening Sessions

LAGUNA BEACH, CA – As the City of Laguna Beach undertakes its search for a new City Manager, the City Council wants to ensure the public has an opportunity to provide feedback about the most important qualities potential candidates should possess.

The public is invited to attend three virtual Listening Sessions on March 6, March 11, and March 16, facilitated by the City’s executive search firm Bob Murray and Associates. The firm’s Executive Vice President, Gary Phillips, will host the sessions via Zoom at the dates, times and Zoom links below. For additional information on all available options to participate in the upcoming Zoom webinar Listening Sessions, Click HERE.

View City Manager’s Press Release here

Saturday, March 6: 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://lagunabeachcity.zoom.us/j/97545461467

Or join by Telephone:

Dial (US): +1 669 900 9128
Webinar ID: 975 4546 1467

Thursday, March 11: 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://lagunabeachcity.zoom.us/j/94968456127

Or join by Telephone:

Dial (US): +1 669 900 9128
Webinar ID: 949 6845 6127

Tuesday, March 16: 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://lagunabeachcity.zoom.us/j/95174625549

Or join by Telephone:

Dial (US): +1 669 900 9128
Webinar ID: 951 7462 5549

Online Public Survey Available

Additionally, an online public survey regarding the City Manager recruitment is now available at the following link: http://bit.ly/LagunaBeachCMSurvey2021

A report containing all the comments and feedback received will be compiled by the recruiter and provided to the Laguna Beach City Council. The City Council has sole responsibility of appointing a City Manager, and anticipates to select a candidate for City Manager in May. The City Manager serves as the chief executive for the City of Laguna Beach.