Election Update and More Bullying
I took a peek at the most recent election numbers this morning. As of 5 p.m. last night there remained just over 54,000 total votes to be counted.
SCHEAFER LEAD GROWS
In close local races, Mike Scheafer has extended his small lead over Arlene Schafer in the race for the final seat on the Costa Mesa Sanitary District Board. Scheafer leads Arlene by 359 votes.
FISLER HAS NARROW LEAD
In a much closer race, Jim Fisler leads Dan Worthington by 69 votes in the race for a seat on the Mesa Consolidated Water District Board. This had been a nip and tuck race since last week, with Fisler leap-frogging Worthington earlier this week.
It's unlikely that all the votes remaining will be counted until later in the month. They must be counted by the end of November. I'll check on them from time to time and report the shifts as they occur.
MENSINGER FLOGS ANOTHER APPLICANT
I had a chance to catch pieces of the Costa Planning Commission meeting last Monday evening. I confess I did not watch all of it being pre-occupied with Monday Night Football. However, I did linger long enough to watch commissioner Steve Mensinger, once again, bully an applicant before the commission. The applicant in question was seeking approval for some minor issues for a common interest development on Hamilton, near Harbor Blvd. She was planning to build 5 units although the property would accommodate six. Each was over 2,000 square feet and were nice units. Mensinger, however, didn't like the "look". He thought they should have been fancier - none of which is within the purview of his job as planning commissioner. He went on and on, berating this poor woman for a project that met almost all of the city's requirements, including building fewer units than she could have. Parking was not a problem, unlike so many projects presented in our city. And yet, on and on Mensinger went, complaining about such minutia as the "plain" paperwork used to present the project - he wanted to see glossy color slides, all of which cost much more money.
BULLY ON THE CITY COUNCIL?
I mention this because Mensinger's name frequently comes up as a possible replacement for Katrina Foley on the City Council. Mensinger is a smart guy, used to running businesses and is impatient with those who either don't respond to his "direction" immediately or present what he views as an inferior plan. He tries to micro-manage many projects that the Planning Commission sees. He's a guy who "gets things done", but he does so in an authoritarian manner, with no apparent interest in building consensus and negotiation. It's one thing to resurrect Estancia High School Football through sheer strength of personality, but it's entirely another when asked to be part of a city council team, working together for the common good of the city. I don't think a guy whose problem-solving technique is bullying is the right fit for our city council... just one guy's opinion.