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Coto de Caza, California is a census-designated place and guard-gated private community in the unincorporated Trabuco Canyon area of Orange County, California. As of the 2000 census, the CDP had a total population of 13,057

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Coto Dreamin

February 12, 2006  


Your message below  is very useful to illustrate the contrast between our vision for Coto de Caza and what we have been getting from the Robert Varo & Jerry Mezger board for the last two years

We value the US Constitution, freedom, democracy, transparency, social capital, diversity, personal accountability and tolerance (tolerance, not  acceptance) .  We do not believe the Constitution should be turned  On/Off at the gates or at the whim of the board or service providers, as if it was just another Coto transponder.

With all due respect to Dr. Martin Luther King, our dream for Coto is that our character is measured by our actions, not by our tee times,  our position in Keystone’s List of Prominent Coto Residents, how many academic degrees we hold, or how many times we have been the number one salesperson, or how many venture capitalist are in our palm pilot.

Our dream is that our community will be measured by what we leave behind, not by the number of free movies at the park we were able to schedule or attend.

We believe that actions speak louder than words.  If we want to stake our reputation on honesty, we will let our actions speak louder than our words, not the other way around.

We believe in an honest days’ pay for an honest days’ work.  Not to pay service providers to tell the press how great we are,  or use them to promote personal agendas.

We believe in common sense.  Not on turning to legal counsel to address simple issues, such as whether or not to prepare meeting minutes 

We believe in integrity.  Not on power mongering.  

We believe “there is a way which seems right to a man,  but in the end it leads to death” Therefore we want to stay as far away from any appearance of conflict of interest , not endorse it. 

We believe that our Yes should mean yes and our No should mean no.  If we break the law, we expect to be held accountable, not find loopholes to get away with it.

We believe in law and order, and we believe that values are modeled, not legislated.  When we say we value public safety, we do all we can to promote it.  Not use derogatory remarks when we refer to law enforcement agents, then build road block after road block, such as letting road certification expire, mislead residents that the “Sheriff is coming for pro-active traffic control under revenue-neutral conditions”, then use every possible excuse to discourage volunteerism.  What does that tell our kids?

We believe that we should respectfully challenge our friends and neighbors for the betterment of the community, and expect to be challenged ourselves.  Not encourage neighbor to snitch on neighbor, or moon them if we do not agree with them.

When John Zarian told us that perhaps our dreams were Quixotic, and that since the Coto silent majority remained silent, we should simply fold tent, we started to doubt ourselves.  We considered moving, as we have been ashamed to be associated with a valueless, spiritless community.  Then the unfortunate traffic accident happened and the silent majority woke up.  The stream of letters and words of encouragement keep coming in, and now we are once again dreaming about  the Coto we know we can leave our kids.

Subject: [COTO] Re: CZ - Another High Priced Consultant
Just a reminder. The CHP can still make DUI arrests now, on any street in Coto, and the offender will face misdemeanor DUI charges.
Same is true for any misdemeanor offense any place, not just on roads. Other automobile misdemeanors include hit and run and reckless driving, but not speeding, seat belt violations, expired registrations,  and rolling stop sign infractions, which are the majority of citations in Coto.
WIth regard to jurisdiction, my son just beat a ticket for a seat belt violation (he was a passenger) issued by the CHP on Calle Castile. He cited lack of CHP jurisdiction on that road and won.
That should not be a surprise, that street has never  been certified.
So what's going to happen to traffic tickets issued on the decertified roads? Probably the same thing if contested.
The question is- Why was the CHP issuing tickets on Calle Castille in the first place?
It sounds like some of the CHP have not been properly instructed.
If they are wasting time giving citations on the private roads, then they are not available to monitor dangerous activities like speeding on the main thoroughfares.


Subject: [COTO] RE: CZ - Another High Priced Consultant
Another high priced Consultant at our expense!!!   The current incompetent and lazy CZ Board never ceases to amaze me.  Neighborhood Watch information is available free of charge from most law enforcement agencies.  The CHP and or Fire Authority will come any time to provide information for free.  Before we retain another Consultant to do CJ Klug's job, Mr. Klug needs to earn his high priced salary by pulling together resources that are all available free of charge.   I suspect we can even get FEMA representatives to come in and discuss Disaster Preparedness which the current incompetent CZ Board has completely ignored in favor of spending time organizing the July 4th parade.  Of course, there will be no Safety Committee willing to give up their free speech rights as a condition of service to the community that could have acted on this free information so I guess the Board will have to pay a Consultant to manage Safety for the Board like every other Association function.  We have a CZ Board that spends our money like drunken sailors.  If Varo and Company are not careful, they will be cited for DUI's on Coto de Caza Drive the only street in Coto that is still certified.   Joe Morabito

From: [] On Behalf Of Buzz @CotoBuzz
Sent: Saturday, February 11, 2006 9:17 AM
To:;; James Harkins
Cc: Lani Kaneshiro; Erica Griffith; Cary Treff
Subject: [COTO] Yet One More Breach

Yet One More Breach
As you know, for years we have been advocating a comprehensive public safety program for Coto de Caza.  Days before the most recent fatality, we asked legal counsel to compel  Keystone and the board to either consider any of our public safety proposals or articulate one of their own – we all know what happened.
The CZ Master board of directors have used derogatory remarks, in public, when referring to the CHP, using fallacious reasoning: “because Coto residents pay taxes, so CHP services should be provided for free”  – However, at the same time, the board has refused to take advantage of the CHP’s most respected community awareness program, a cornerstone of an effective public safety program, provided free of charge.  It should be noted that other communities such as Ladera Ranch jumped at the first chance to include  a CHP agent as a member of their public safety committee.
Most people in the community, and a lot more outside of it, by now know that this board has been more interested in pursuing personal agendas over public safety issues, including the trampling of civil liberties. 
Simply consider the most recent event involving the failure to keep up road certification, the promise of pro-active traffic control by the Sheriff at no additional charge, and the  fired group Formerly Known as the Safety Committee.
So now the board wants to bring in a consultant to advice a new Safety Committee – that is,  if the board is able to find other volunteers willing to give up their free speech rights and their spouses.
Not taking into consideration that this  “expert consultant” simply contributed to the most recent transponder verification chaos, it is obvious that the only practical use for this consultant is to provide a way for the board to deliver a positive spin to the Orange County Register – given that certain service providers will do anything as abhorrent as it may be, for a buck.
Therefore, it should be very, very clear to all that a decision to hire an expert consultant to advice the board on public safety issues under no circumstance can meet the best business judgment rule.
This is  yet another breach!
For Reference:  Elements of Effective Traffic Control Plan
L – Leadership
E – Engineering – that is, streets need to be certified for patrol and certification needs to be current
E- Education – self-awareness program to educate residents on the importance of respecting law and order.  .
E – Engagement – coordination between law enforcement agencies and residents
O – organization


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