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Seal Beach Considers Reversal of Sex Offender Ban

Seal Beach City Council will meet in closed session Monday to talk about possibly dismantling the ban on sex offenders at parks and beaches. Los Alamitos has no plans to end its ban, mayor says.

The Lake Forest City Council voted to reverse its ban on sex offenders in city parks on last week, and Seal Beach might do the same.

The Seal Beach City Council will meet in closed sessions Monday to discuss the possibility of ending a city law that prohibits sex offenders from Seal Beach recreation areas: parks, the pier, the jetties, the beach and beach parking lots.

In March, the Council created

“We followed along with the very strong suggestion of the County D.A.’s Office that we impose a ban on sex offenders,” said Mayor Mike Levitt in a phone interview with Patch Wednesday. “On Monday, we’re going to consider whether we were a little premature in doing it.”

According to Levitt, proponents of the ordinance told Seal Beach officials that if all cities along the coast created similar legislation, “it would be a safer beach for everyone.”

“At the time, I thought it was a good idea,” Levitt said. “It would be safer for the majority of the citizens of Seal Beach and the visitors."

Levitt said he wanted to reserve judgment on possibly dismantling the law until the Monday meeting.

“I’m not going to be really saying anything (on the reversal) at this point," he said. "I don’t want to prejudge."

The Los Alamitos City Council has no plans at this point to reverse its ordinance banning sex offenders in city parks, according to Los Al Mayor Troy Edgar. 

Background

With the support of the Orange County District Attorney’s office, last year the Orange County Board of Supervisors approved a law banning sex offenders from city parks.

A number of cities including Mission Viejo, Seal Beach, Fountain Valley, Los Alamitos and Laguna Niguel created similar bans.

However, a recent appeals panel ruling overturned the conviction of a man who violated the county law. A state court may take up the case.

San Juan Capistrano discussed and ultimately rejected a proposed ban because of liability and legal concerns.

And on Tuesday, citing similar concerns, the Lake Forest City Council reversed its ban, becoming the first Orange County city to do so.

Litigation

Levitt said the possibility of litigation is one of the main reasons discussing the item on Monday.

“Litigation can be very expensive,” Levitt said. “Economically this is not a good time for a city to take on a huge legal defense. If our stance would lead to expensive litigation, I would have to consider that as a possible reason to change it (the ordinance). I don’t want my city's citizens, taxpayers, saddled with high litigation costs.”

Levitt add that there is always the possibility of legal challenges to any city law.

“You can’t stick your head in the sand and say I will never take an action," Levitt said.

The Monday closed session meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall in the Council Chambers, 211 8th Street. 

Do you think Seal Beach should reverse its ban on registered sex offenders at the pier, in parks or the beach?

Lil-Marty December 12, 2012 at 04:14 PM
So who wants to poke fun a Lil Marty today! I can't help it if I'm short. Violent tendencies in regard to sex offenders and child molesters! YOUR DAMN right I do! Buchanan, let me guess, you would like to round 'em all up and sing KUMBAYA and have a tea party with 'em. Buchanan, SAY HELLO TO MY LITTLE RASCAL!!!!! Lil Marty Leisure World
arttie short December 12, 2012 at 04:31 PM
"the one"....u sound like the keyboard player on the feminin band ...the wanted!.....marty i thnk these peeeple are suffering from midget-envy!!...
Non Citizen December 12, 2012 at 06:58 PM
buchanan: The Registries are not "becoming a joke". They were a joke a long, long time ago. If they were not, there would have been a hundred other types of Registries created over a decade ago. It is beyond clear that the Registries are not really about public safety or protecting children. Those are lies. Of all the people who support the Registries (which is a large majority of people), only a small percentage of them have any sense. Experts on sexual offending and nearly all informed people with sense have never supported the Registries. The Registries are an idiotic panacea that is quite counterproductive. And this "beach banishment" law is nothing but pure through and through, useless stupidity. There is not a single good American who supports it. It is quite a shame that Terrorist Tony Rackauckas will not be held personally legally responsible for his crimes. However, people should seek him out and do anything legal to lower the quality of his life and his family's. He should be run out of the U.S.
The One December 12, 2012 at 09:10 PM
No, being midgets has made you sour at the world, and your ignorant, misguided attempts at be"littleing" (pun intented), is your feable way of aggrandizing yourself. Nothing to be jealous of. But I do have a solution for you: take a couple viagras and lie down: congratulations, you're taller! That should "kill two birds with one stone, your vertical impairment AND your "little rascal" ;)
VSPSV(S?) January 03, 2013 at 05:57 PM
Lil-Marty, I want to meet you!!!!!!!!!

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