Catalina Island
64.4 °F
Reported on:
September 19, 2017 - 4:17pm

Articles by Charles M. Kelly

The City of Avalon won’t be hiring anyone for at least two weeks.

At that time, the council will receive updated figures on the city’s budget.

That was the direction of Mayor Bob Kennedy to staff, informally supported by two other council members, following a discussion of cost saving measures for this year and next year at the Tuesday, Feb. 4, City Council meeting.

City Manager Ben Harvey suggested that the city consider a year-long hiring freeze.

In early January, Avalon Sheriff’s Station deputies arrested a minor and two adults for their roles in the theft and vandalism of a resident’s golf cart.

The minor was arrested Jan. 2. The adults were arrested Jan. 9.

All three suspects are Avalon residents, according to Capt. Doug Fetteroll, commander of the Avalon station of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department.

The adult suspects were identified as Jonathan Torres, 19 and Ricardo Ramirez, 20.

A powerboat ran aground at Arrow Point on Catalina Island on Monday night, Jan. 27, according to Capt. Doug Fetteroll, commander of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Station in Avalon.

There were three men aboard the boat and all three were injured, two of them seriously, according to Inspector Scott Miller, a public information officer for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Fetteroll said the Sheriff’s Department would investigate the cause of the crash.

Catalina Island had a good December—visitor counts were 28.4 percent higher in December 2013 than in 2012, according to figures released this week by the Chamber of Commerce.

Credit goes to the weather, according to Wayne Griffin, Chamber president and CEO.

Cross channel carrier traffic increased 17.1 percent during the same period. Cruise ship visitor counts in December 2013 were up 65.6 percent over December 2012.

The falconry program will wing its way back to Avalon.

The Avalon City Council on Tuesday, Jan. 21, approved a new professional services agreement with On The Wing falconry service. The agreement was a Consent Calendar item and approved without discussion along with 10 other items by a 4-0 vote. Councilmember Oley Olsen was absent that night.

The contract will last for three months, starting Jan. 28.

The city manager had already approved the agreement, but his decision had to be approved by the council in turn.

Avalon staff will bring an oridiance banning plastic bags to the City Counil next month.

The council, in a unanimous vote, directed staff to draft the ordinance following a presentation on the plastic bag issue at the Tuesday, Jan. 7, council meeting.

The council also approved an amendment to the transportation permit for Bike Catalina.

Audra McDonald, administrative analyst, gave the presentation on the plastic bag ban in response to a request from Council Member Richard Hernandez.

Avalon Sheriff’s Station deputies arrested an Avalon man last week for sexually abusing female children. Authorities accused the man of meeting and abusing four known victims during a 10-year period starting in 2013.

According to the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, the suspect knew the victims.

aThe arrest came 72 hours after the initial complaint was reported by a family member of one of the girls, according to Capt. Douglas Fetteroll, commander of the Avalon Sheriff’s Station.

An Avalon man was arrested for possessing methamphetamine for sale on Wednesday, Dec. 4.

The commander of the Avalon Sheriff’s Station said deputies have made about two drug arrests a month since June.

Quillan Lopez, 28, was arrested at 3:30 p.m., on Sumner Avenue, in front of the Avalon Station of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, for possession of drug paraphernalia.

The November visitor count was 2  percent higher this year than last year, according to figures released this week by the Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce.

While that seems like a modest bump, it needs to be placed in context: the count would have been higher if one cruise ship had not been in dry dock.

Even so, cross channel traffic increased significantly over last year, by 8.1 percent.

The November cruise ship visitor count plunged 20.8 percent.

A divided Avalon City Council voted 2-3 to award the Joe Machado Field concession stand project to Dave Thompson Construction at the agency’s Tuesday, Dec. 3, meeting.

Opponents objected to the cost of the project, which Recreation Coordinator Jennifer Lavelle said would cost $177,478.

Lavelle’s staff report said the original estimate was $50,000.

Project supporters, such as Council Member Michael Ponce, said the city needed to get it done.