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Jim Smith, San Clemente
The guest column about the toll road, open space and Measure V by Council member Lori Donchak was a real head-scratcher. She uses hundreds of words to describe all the benefits of Measure V but oddly neglects to even mention the name of the person who created it. I was there and these are the facts. Charles Mann was the author of Measure V.
The battle began when a majority on the 2007 City Council voted to allow 300-plus houses to be built on land zoned as open space. Charles Mann and a few colleagues organized “Save San Clemente Open Space” and successfully overturned that City Council’s decision. Charles had the foresight to see that a future City Council could create the same problem all over again. That’s why he created Measure V. He believed only residents should be trusted to make the final decision on protecting open space in order to preserve San Clemente’s character and quality of life. He organized and led the campaign that put Measure V on the ballot where it was approved by 72 percent of voters.
Hopefully regarding the Toll Road, his gift keeps on giving back to the community. We are fortunate Charles lives here and has worked tirelessly to make San Clemente a better place for all.