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Rancho Ortega Blog discusses matters of public interest in South Orange County, including the communities of San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch and Rancho Mission Viejo.

The writings of Don Juan Ortega on the Rancho Ortega Blog are the personal views of the author. This blog is not authored by nor does it have any affiliation whatsoever with any other person, place or entity using the name "Rancho Ortega" (or any similar name).

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OCTA Hosts Cycling Roundtable Discussion Tonight

Tonight the Orange County Transportation Authority joins with the City of San Juan Capistrano and other local cities and agencies to host a roundtable discussion about cycling in Orange County. The public is invited and public input is encouraged. In particular, the meeting will discuss how to increase cyclist safety and improve regional bikeways. The [...]

LA Times Article Discusses Swimming Pool Restrictions and the Mathematics of Water Usage

The LA Times is the latest media outlet to pick up on the fact that water agency restrictions aimed at backyard swimming pools may not be necessary, or even effective, when you consider the long term water usages of pools compared to grass or landscaping. According to the LA Times article:

As California’s drought worsens, [...]

OC Fire Fighters Use Irvine Regional Park and OC Zoo as Staging Areas to Battle Silverado Fire

OC Parks is reminding residents that Irvine Regional Park and the Orange County Zoo remain closed through midweek to serve as a base for firefighters battling the Silverado Fire. According to OC Parks, “[t]he fire camp is hosting about 1,000 firefighters from throughout the state and various jurisdictions. It’s like a small city with all [...]

Stay Safe and Stay Cool This Weekend

Courtesy of ReadyOC, here is a reminder about this weekend’s anticipated heat wave:

The U.S. National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Advisory for Orange County, Saturday 9/13 through Monday 9/15. Potential record-breaking heat will hit so be prepared with plenty of water, stay as cool as you can and stay alert for any [...]

Santa Margarita Water District Invites Public Opinion on Swimming Pool Restrictions

Ready for more water news? We seem to be turning into a water blog here, but hey, that’s what happens when your local town is at the center of precedent-setting water rate litigation and your state is in the midst of a drought that ranks somewhere between “historic” and “catastrophic.”

So we recently wrote about [...]

Success of Carlsbad Desalination Plant of Interest to Santa Margarita Water District

After nearly a decade, Poseidon Water’s reverse osmosis desalination plant in Carlsbad is almost complete. Schedule to be operational next year, the Carlsbad plant will be California’s largest desalination facility and if successful, it will supply San Diego County with 50 million gallons of drinking water every day. In the midst of an historic drought, [...]

Ladera Times Calls Attention to a Dangerous Intersection

The Ladera Times has published an article (with accompanying video on the website) calling attention to a dangerous intersection in Ladera Ranch. The article and video are available here. According to the article:

…Laderians, eager to avoid traffic at the notoriously backlogged Oso Grande Elementary roundabout at Sienna, hustle along Narrow Canyon to get to [...]

Santa Margarita Water District to Adopt Mandatory Water Conservation Measures Tonight

The Board of Directors of the Santa Margarita Water District will meet tonight to discuss, among other things, imposing mandatory water reductions on its service area. Back in 2009, the SMWD adopted a comprehensive water conservation program. That program identified four stages of water conservation depending on the severity of the drought. Stage 1 is [...]

Ladera Joins National Night Out for Crime Prevention

With some of the crimes that have occurred in Ladera Ranch recently, this initiative seems all the more timely and appropriate, even if it is a symbolic gesture. Other communities can participate as well.

Even symbolic gestures are a good reminder to that we should all be vigilant and speak up if you see [...]

Otra Mas Rehabilitates Retired Horses for Therapeutic Uses

The Capistrano Dispatch has published an article about Otra Mas — an organization dedicated to rehabilitating retired horses for therapy work.

Thanks to Otra Mas, a new volunteer organization in San Juan Capistrano, aging performance horses in need of rehabilitation—like 24-year-old Demi—are being given a new lease on life and a renewed purpose as therapy [...]