HOA Quarterly


February 2023 | Issue No.6

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Providing City-Specific Updates and Resources to Laguna Niguel Homeowner's Associations

HOA Outreach Meeting on Thursday, March 30th

Registration is Now Open!

The City of Laguna Niguel invites current Laguna Niguel HOA Board Members and Property Managers to attend an informative lunch meeting presented by City staff. This is an opportunity to meet staff, learn about City processes, and ask questions.

We will have guest speakers from CalFire and the California Department of Insurance. This meeting will be held at the Crown Valley Community Center, Crown Ballroom on Thursday, March 30th from 11:30 am - 1:00 pm. Lunch will be provided.

Registration closes on Thursday, March 23. To register, please click the link below.

Click Here to Register


Registration Open - HOA Outreach Meeting on Thursday, March 30th

ASK Laguna Niguel!

The HOA Show Podcast

CAL FIRE Wildfire Prevention Grants Program

National Fire Protection Association - Firewise USA Program

California Department of Insurance Safer from Wildfires Program

Ensure the Protection of Nesting Birds During Construction and Tree Trimming

Accessory Dwelling Units

Neighborhood Watch Program

New Hi-Lo Sirens for Emergencies

Community Associations Institute: OC Education Committee's "HOA U Educational Series"

Community Associations Institute: California's New Organic Waste Recycling Requirements

Upcoming Slurry Seal Project

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ASK Laguna Niguel!

The Publications Team is always looking for new authors and new information to share!

If there is a topic you would like to learn about - OR - if you would like to submit an article, please email 

HOA@cityoflagunaniguel.org. A team member will get connected with you.

Hosted by: Ryan Gesell, CIRMS, CMCA

The HOA Show Podcast

This podcast covers a variety of relevant topics geared toward HOAs. Some episode topics include "Liens and How Associations Should Best Use Them."

Click Here for the HOA Show Podcast

Wildfire Prevention Grants Program

CAL FIRE’s Wildfire Prevention Grants Program provides funding for wildfire prevention projects and activities in and near fire threatened communities that focus on increasing the protection of people, structures, and communities. Funded activities include Hazardous Fuels Reduction, Wildfire Prevention Planning, and Wildfire Prevention Education with an emphasis on improving public health and safety while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The application is now open and CAL FIRE is accepting applications through March 15, 2023.

California’s Strategic Fire Plan serves as a roadmap for project development. Projects are evaluated based on the overall benefit to reduce the threat of wildfires to people, structures, and communities. CAL FIRE will consider the wildfire hazards and risk of an area, the geographic balance of projects, and whether the project is complementary to other wildfire prevention or forest health activities when awarding grants. Disadvantaged communities and low-income communities as defined by Assembly Bill 1550 (Gomez) (Stats. 2016, Ch. 369), and projects that demonstrate a carbon benefit by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and contain matching funds will receive additional priority. Projects are selected on a competitive basis and consecutive awards are not guaranteed. Disadvantaged and low-income communities can be determined using the process in Appendix F of the Wildfire Prevention Grants Program Procedure Guide.

CAL FIRE will provide technical expertise and management oversight of grants but may not be the primary agency or applicant in projects.

Click Here for More Information on the Program and Eligibility Requirements

Firewise Communities

The Firewise USA® recognition program is administered by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and provides a collaborative framework to help neighbors in a geographic area get organized, find direction, and take action to increase the ignition resistance of their homes and community and to reduce wildfire risks at the local level. The Firewise USA program is a part of California’s efforts to ensure communities are prepared against wildfire, and CAL FIRE Office of the State Fire Marshal’s new Community Wildfire Preparedness & Mitigation Division works to assist local communities in receiving this designation.

How to Become a Firewise Community:

Step 1: Organize it

Create a board or committee of volunteers to represent your community, including residents and partners such as local forestry agencies or the fire department. Identify a resident leader who will be the program's point of contact. The board or committee defines the boundaries of the site and determines the number of individual single-family dwelling units. Community size: Minimum of 8 dwelling units and a maximum of 2,500. Multiple Firewise USA sites can be located within a city/town or master-planned community/HOA.

Step 2: Plan it

The board or committee will collaborate with their local wildfire expert to complete a community wildfire risk assessment. The assessment should be a community-wide view that identifies areas of successful wildfire risk reduction and areas where improvements could be made. Emphasis should be on the general conditions of homes and related home ignition zones. The assessment is a living document and needs to be updated at a minimum every 5 years.

Step 3: Do it

Each year, neighbors complete educational and risk reduction actions identified in the plan. These go towards your site's annual reporting efforts.

At a minimum, each site is required to annually invest the equivalent of one volunteer hour per dwelling unit in wildfire risk reduction actions. If your site has identified 100 homes within its boundary, than 100 hours of work or the monetary equivalent, based on the independent sector value of volunteer time, need to be completed for that year.

Click Here for More Information on How to Become a Firewise Community

California Department of Insurance

Safer from Wildfires Program

Safer from Wildfires is an interagency partnership between Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and the emergency response and readiness agencies in Governor Gavin Newsom's administration to protect lives, homes, and businesses by reducing wildfire risk.

Did you know that homeowners can take 3 important steps to help make their homes ‘Safer from Wildfires’?

These 3 steps shown above are part of the state’s ‘Safer from Wildfires’ program. By implementing these steps, homeowners can not only reduce wildfire risk in our community but also potentially receive property insurance discounts! 

Click Here For More Information on the "Safer from Wildfires" Program  
View a List of Insurance Companies Offering Discounts for the Program 
California Department of Insurance's Top Ten Tips for Residential Insurance  

Ensure the Protection of Nesting Birds During Construction & Tree Trimming

Did You Know?

To harm or kill a native bird, regardless of intent, is a violation of the law.

The different types of violations may include:

  • Deliberately hunting protected birds
  • Accidentally misidentifying and hunting protected birds
  • Poisoning birds with improperly used pesticides
  • Poaching birds for sale as pets
  • Destroying nests or disturbing nesting birds
  • Raising baby wild birds as pets
  • Raising “abandoned” baby wild birds with the intent to release them
  • Collecting wild bird feathers, nests, or eggs

State & Federal Laws Protect ALL Native Birds

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 (MBTA) is one of the country’s oldest and most comprehensive pieces of legislation designed to protect birds, ensuring wildlife diversity and conservation for generations to come. Agencies at the State and Federal level work to

protect all native birds in the United States and internationally, according to the MBTA, the federal Endangered Species Act, and other legislation. While the MBTA addresses migratory birds specifically, each state may have laws of its own to protect species of conservation concern within its borders. In California, Section 3513 of the Fish and Game Code further protects migratory birds, while additional codes extend this protection to certain types of birds. Essentially, this means all native birds.

Help Protect Native Birds!

Avoid nesting birds when trimming trees near your property or during construction activities by:

  • Planning activities (brush removal, tree trimming, building demolition, grading, etc.) outside of nesting season whenever possible.
  • Surveying construction areas for nesting birds and active nests: Always assume a nest is active, particularly if adult birds are present. Consider hiring a biologist to assist with the survey and to determine when it is safe to commence activities.
  • Delaying construction activity within 300 feet of an active nest until the nest is no longer active (i.e., when the chicks have left the nest and activity around the nest is no longer observed).
Click Here for More Information 

Accessory Dwelling Units

In an effort to accelerate housing construction throughout California, the State legislature passed a series of laws to encourage Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) in single and multi-family neighborhoods. Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units (JADUs) are independent living facilities located on the same parcel as the primary unit, which may be occupied by extended family members or tenants.

The City's ADU Ordinance (Ordinance No. 2021-211) is consistent with State law while maintaining the fabric of our community. Below is more information about Accessory Dwelling Units and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units. If you have any questions, please contact (949) 362-4300 or email Planning@cityoflagunaniguel.org.

What is an ADU? 

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) have gone by many names, including granny flats, in-law units, and secondary units. By definition, an ADU is a self-contained, additional housing unit, on a permanent foundation, that contains a kitchen, bathroom, and a place to sleep. ADUs range in size from 150 square feet for a studio to 1,000 square feet for a unit with multiple bedrooms.

What is a Junior ADU?

Like an ADU, a Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit (JADU) is an additional housing unit on a residential property. JADUs are limited to a maximum of 500 square feet in size and must be contained within the walls of an existing or proposed home. JADUs require an efficiency kitchen, and may share a bathroom with the main house or include their own bathroom.

Types of ADUs:

Click Here for More Information on ADUs

Neighborhood Watch Program

Laguna Niguel Police Services encourages residents to participate in the Neighborhood Watch program designed to help prevent and reduce crime through education and increased communication with law enforcement. This program is a cooperative effort between interested citizens and Police Services striving to improve the quality of life in both your immediate neighborhood and overall community. 

To start a Neighborhood Watch group, please contact Crime Prevention Specialist Michelle Conlin at (949) 362-4365 or Crime Prevention Specialist Madison Simmons at (949) 362-4605.

Click Here for More Information on the Neighborhood Watch Program

New Hi-Lo Sirens for Emergencies

Some of the Sheriff's Department's patrol units are now equipped with a new siren feature to alert residents to evacuation orders during emergencies, such as a fire or flood. The system also is equipped with an external PA system that can play recorded messages to notify residents about the need to evacuate.

Our priority during any emergency is your safety, and this new tool will help bolster our response efforts during mass evacuations. Remember: When you hear hi-lo, it's time to go!

Click the above video link for more information or go to: https://youtu.be/niZO7nfZ3C8

CAI-OC Education Committee's

"HOA U Educational Series"

Tuesday Evenings

March 7-28

6:00pm - 8:00pm

Designed for homeowner volunteers and others in community association management, this comprehensive program will guide you through key issues in association management today.

March 7 - Law

March 14 - FInances & Reserves Studies

March 21 - Insurance

March 28 - Maintenance, Construction Contracts & Bidding

Click Here for More Information and How To Register

Many California backyard gardeners have been composting for years. Now, all Californians will, one way or another, be required to recycle organic waste for composting, much as we have been recycling green garden waste.


Pursuant to regulations effective January 1, 2022, local jurisdictions and multi-family dwellings with more than five units (including community associations) are required to have organic waste recycling programs in place. Associations with fewer than five units won't be required to take action, but all individual owners, whether they live in condominiums, planned developments, or standard subdivisions, will be required to comply. The new trash laws apply to everyone. Communities are struggling to understand and implement these new requirements, and there may be more changes to the law in the future to provide better understanding and guidance, but these requirements are in effect so communities must act.


Organic waste in landfills emits 20% of... to read more click here.

O.C View January/February 2023 Edition
About CAI's Orange County Regional Chapter

City of Laguna Niguel - Upcoming Slurry Seal Project

The Residential Annual Resurfacing Program is the maintenance of Citywide arterial and residential roadways per the Pavement Management Plan. It helps the City preserve and extend the life of our city roads. The project, commonly known as the "Slurry Seal" Project, includes various tasks such as traffic control, public outreach, minor crack sealing, and the application of Type II slurry seal, which is a water-based, emulsified asphalt mixture. The added useful life of the rehabilitated roadways is 7 years. 


Much like any big renovation, there is substantial amount of prep work required to effectively prepare neighborhoods for pavement resurfacing. The multi-step process includes different types of work such as crack fill, localized repairs, and ultimately conclude with pavement resurfacing, as well as striping. This year, Zones 3 and 4 of the Residential Annual Resurfacing Program will be completed. Phase I of the project is anticipated to begin mid-spring of 2023, and Phase II is anticipated to begin in the summer and conclude in the fall of 2023. 


Although the Slurry Seal Project only addresses public roadways, the City recognizes the impact the project has on the entire community. The City will actively provide project updates on its social media platforms, mobile app, and website.

Below is a general overview of the slurry seal process.

Click Here for More Information

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To receive HOA information and updates, please email HOA@CityOfLagunaNiguel.org with your contact information, HOA name, and position.
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