(image via shorecliffsbeach.com)
Legend has it that Saint Clement, aka Pope Clement I, was killed for converting pagans to Christianity by having an anchor tied round his neck and drowned in the sea. In modern day San Clemente, neighbors in the Shorecliffs neighborhood are dropping feces on each others lawns, painting the word "abortion" on each others homes, and disinviting their neighbors' children to birthday parties because some want to convert their one story tract homes into two-story mcmansions. Things are getting uglier and uglier in Orange County where blocking ocean views with a second floor addition is bringing some normally sane people to the brink of fisticuffs. The OC Register reports that the battle among neighbors has spilled into San Clemente City Hall and the local Republican Party.
The city set up a task force to assess the desire of Shorecliffs' 505 property owners and hosted several boisterous City Hall meetings. The council imposed a six-month moratorium on second-story additions in Shorecliffs and last month passed an ordinance limiting homes in the neighborhood to one story. Rick Collins' wife, Kathy Collins, said she was a member of the city task force. She charges that the effort was stacked in favor of the one-story faction and that the results of the survey were skewed.
The two-story faction is now spending $50,000 in an attempt to gather about 3,700 signatures for a referendum that will block the city from implementing its Shorecliffs ordinance until at least 2008 and put the issue to voters citywide, Rick Collins said.
Thursday is the deadline to collect the needed signatures in order to put the referendum before the voting public. However, the more we read about this neighborly squabble the more we think its going to get even uglier.
UPDATE: Opponents of the anti-second story ordinance submitted 5,987 signatures today, ensuring that the City of San Clemente will put the proposed height ordinance to the vote of the feces flinging public.
· Fight over ocean views tears San Clemente neighborhood apart [OC Register]