Santana: Columbus, Indigenous Peoples’ Day Engages Around Equity

The debate over recasting Columbus Day as Indigenous People’s Day offers a chance to consider equity in society and how best civic leaders can address inequity. In San Juan Capistrano, the historic debate is in many ways still playing itself out in the effort to preserve one of the last original indigenous villages in Orange County. And on the modern policy front, one recent study about inequity in Orange County is challenging local policymakers to confront a stark opportunity gap between geographic areas of the county – split along largely racial, ethnic and income lines.

Santana: Death of OC Auditor Controller Underscores Why Public Access to Elected Officials’ Calendars Matters

After having his department largely defunded last year because of an active watchdog approach, it now seems that deceased Orange County Auditor Controller Eric Woolery was transitioning his life to Kansas. Orange County taxpayers had a right to know that Woolery was super-commuting to his local office from out of state and might be transitioning to a new life. Access to an official public calendar would have allowed for that kind of accountability, something that County of Orange officials keep fighting.

Santana: Brea’s Private Water Woes

Brea City Treasurer Rick Rios along with Brea resident activist and downtown developer Dwight Manley keep pressing uncomfortable questions about the city’s main water wholesaler, Cal Domestic Water. Their probe, which has already drawn a DA review and state sanctions over past dealings, may soon be headed to OC Superior Court.

Santana: Fishing Comes Back to Irvine Lake

A defunct but popular Orange County fishing spot comes back to life on Saturday, Aug. 17 after Supervisor Don Wagner – who is up for re-election next year, successfully leads negotiations with two neighboring water districts to re-open Irvine Lake, which has been shut down since 2016.