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Supervisor Michelle Steel
In This Issue
orange arrow Welcome
orange arrow Public Safety Update
orange arrow Mental Health Update
orange arrow Public Works Update
orange arrow In the Community
November 1, 2019
Volume 5 Issue 13
Fire Preparedeness

With wildfires burning around us, and red-flag warnings across the state, I have prepared a list of helpful links with information for fire preparedeness:

CalFire provides up-to-date information on fire incidents across the state.

To stay informed on emergencies throughout the County, sign up for AlertOC. 

AlertOC is a mass notification system designed to keep Orange County, California residents and businesses informed of emergencies that may require immediate life saving actions.
By registering with AlertOC, time-sensitive voice messages from the County or City in which you live or work may be sent to your home, cell, or business phone. 
Text messages may also be sent to cell phones, e-mail accounts, and TTY devices.  AlertOC is operated by the County of Orange in collaboration with local cities.
You can sign up here.
The Orange County Fire Authority provides helpful information on fire safety and how to prepare for disaster
In an emergency, you can call or text 9-1-1 throughout the County.
Local Fire departments in the cities of Costa MesaHuntington Beach, Fountain Valley, and Newport Beach, also have helpful information for residents. 
Please stay safe this fire season, and in an emergency remember to call 9-1-1.
California Department of Public Health Urges Residents Near Wildfire Areas to be Aware of Air Quality

With a growing number of wildfires in both Northern and Southern California, the air quality in many parts of the state may be unhealthy. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is providing additional information, tools and resources on its website so individuals can check on the air quality in their town or city and have a better understanding on the impact it can have on their health.

“Air quality may be changing in a number of our communities, even those far away from the fires,” said State Public Health Officer and CDPH Director Dr. Sonia Angell. “It’s important that you have the information you need to stay safe: children, women who are pregnant and older adults, and people with existing lung and heart conditions may be particularly sensitive to changes in air quality.”

On CDPH’s website, visitors can view current air quality conditions by simply entering their zip code.

Public Safety Update
Orange County Prevails in Legal Challenge of Needle Exchange Program

On October 25, the County of Orange prevailed in its lawsuit against the Orange County Needle Exchange Program (OCNEP) and is now entitled to Judgment against the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) on the County’s claim under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

“The state failed to do its due diligence and comply with its own environmental laws when it approved the Orange County Needle Exchange Program,” said Vice Chair Michelle Steel, Second District. “State officials ignored the pleas of local leaders and decided to prioritize easy access to needles for drug addicts over the health and safety of our communities.”

As a result of this legal determination, and because the CDPH did not comply with CEQA when it approved the OCNEP application, the County will be entitled to a writ of mandate compelling the CDPH to vacate its approval of the drug needle mobile giveaway in the cities of Anaheim, Costa Mesa, Orange, and Santa Ana. 

On June 5, 2018 then Chairman Do and then Supervisor Steel jointly presented item S29C to officially oppose OCNEP’s needle exchange. On August 3, 2018 a special meeting of the Board of Supervisors was held, with all then Supervisors voting to sue the state of California after the California Department of Public Health approved OCNEP’s program despite the Board’s objections.

In the ruling, Judge Wohlfeil determined that the needle exchange program is a “project” subject to review under CEQA, saying “…there is a possibility that the project will result in an increase in used needle litter, a biohazard. This constitutes a tangible change in the areas surrounding operation of the [needle exchange program].”

Learn more here.

Newport Beach Public Safety Seminar, November 23

If you are a Newport Beach resident and interested in hearing from your Public Safety officials, please join me and Mayor Dixon for this informative seminar on November 23, 2019. RSVP here.

Mental Health Update
Orange County Breaks Ground on First Mental Health and Wellness Campus in Orange County

Representatives from across the state of California, Orange County, the City of Orange, CalOptima and the local hospital systems came together to celebrate the groundbreaking of the first Be Well OC Campus at 265 Anita Drive, Orange, California, on October 16.

“Having access to mental health services for all of our County’s citizens is critical for each person’s respective well-being,” said Orange County Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Michelle Steel, Second District.

The new 60,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility set for completion in the Fall of 2020, will offer best-in-class mental health and substance use disorder (SUD) treatment programs available to all residents, regardless of payer. Service elements will include triage, psychiatric intake and referral, SUD intake and referral, withdrawal management, transitional residential, residential treatment and an integrated support center.

This first of three Be Well OC campuses marks the initial physical manifestation of the broader Be Well OC initiative. The initiative is the first of its kind in the state of California to leverage the best-in-class capabilities of public, private, academic and faith-based entities, to create a coordinated system of care and solve this pervasive mental healthcare challenge. Currently, more than 100 organizations play a role in the Be Well ecosystem.

The Orange County Board of Supervisors committed $16.6 million for the development of the campus, in addition to investments from CalOptima, Kaiser Permanente, Hoag and Providence St. Joseph Health (St. Jude Medical Center and St. Joseph Hospital). The projected cost for the campus is $40 million. 

Public Works Update
Annual Progress Report for Floodplain Management Plan

Significant Discounts in Flood Insurance Premiums for Property Owners

By performing certain flood control related activities, the County of Orange has helped homeowners in the unincorporated areas of Orange County receive a 25 percent discount in flood insurance premiums. The County of Orange is a participant in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) National Flood Insurance Program and Community Rating System (CRS). Property owners whose properties lie within FEMA’s Special Flood Hazard Areas or “100-year floodplains” are eligible to receive a discount in flood insurance premiums each year depending on the level of the activities performed by their local jurisdiction.

The CRS program requires completion of various flood control related activities, including construction and maintenance of flood control channels. Additionally, it requires CRS participants to provide an Annual Progress Report (Report) to inform the public of recent achievements in reducing flood risk in their communities. The Report summarizes the activities that the County is undertaking to reduce or eliminate its largest floodplains. The County manages and maintains approximately 380 miles of flood control channels throughout Orange County.

The Report includes activities for projects that are in the design phase or completed construction projects from the County’s 7-Year Flood Control Capital Improvement Program. Major improvements are in the Westminster and San Juan Creek watersheds, which have the largest floodplains in Orange County.

Information about the Report, including a summary of completed projects, can be found on the OC Flood section of the Orange County (OC) Public Works website at, 3rd Item, “Annual Progress Report for Floodplain Management Plan.”

In the Community
Successful Senior Scam Stopper Seminar in Fountain Valley

On October 24, I co-hosted a very successful Senior Scam Stopper Seminar with Assemblyman Tyler Diep in Fountain Valley. The response was overwhelming and we had to add more chairs to accommodate the overflow.

The audience listened intently and asked some great questions. After the event was over, none of the guest speakers left until everyone had their additional questions answered.

You can watch a short video of the event here.

Vietnamese American Physician Association of Southern California Health Fair

It was a pleasure to co-sponsor the Vietnamese American Physician Association of Southern California’s OC Free Health Fair at Mile Square Park - Freedom Hall, on Sunday, October 27.

Hundreds of residents took advantage of the free screenings and treatment from specialists all across the health spectrum. I actually received my seasonal flu shot! It was great to see so many families and individuals taking advantage of the free professional services.

A big thank you to all of the doctors, nurses, and health care professionals who volunteered their time and services to give back to the community.

30th Spurgeon Award Luncheon

It was a pleasure to support the 30th Spurgeon Award Luncheon benefiting the Exploring Program of Orange County, at the Marriott Suites in Garden Grove.

I had staff on hand to personally present the adult community leaders with framed certificates of recognition for being selected as Spurgeon Award Recipients. And, present to four special Explorers, for being selected as Young American Award Recipients.

Congratulations to OCBSA for hosting such a great event. I’m proud of all those recognized.

Free Self-Defense Workshop, Huntington Beach

On October 22, I co-hosted a free Self- Defense Workshop with Assemblyman Tyler Diep at the Huntington Beach Senior Center in Central Park.

Over 300 people of all ages came out to learn more about personal safety and awareness, emergency self-defense techniques, assertiveness training, and understanding the reaction to inappropriate behavior, at this workshop.

As you can see by the photos, I led by example and participated in the training - which was both fun and informative.

I want to give a big thank you to GET SAFE, who partnered with us for the free workshop and did a great job!

Pacific Symphony: Orange County’s Arts Ambassador to the World

It is a distinct pleasure and honor to announce that under my leadership, the Orange County Board of Supervisors has designated the Pacific Symphony as ‘Orange County’s Arts Ambassador to the World.’

For 30 years, the Pacific Symphony has been led by Maestro Carl St. Clair, who has not only led our orchestra, but has conducted orchestras around the world and conducted the Pacific Symphony in China and several European countries.

The Pacific Symphony is the largest orchestra formed in the United States in the last fifty years, and has earned national and international acclaim and awards for artistic excellence, creativity, and extensive education and community programs.

As a cellist, I have some understanding and great appreciation for the talent, dedication, and perseverance the musicians exhibit that have made the Pacific Symphony truly World-Class.

Ed Arnold Volunteer of the Year Awards

It was a pleasure to have staff on hand to recognize David Osborn as the recipient of the 4th Annual ‘Ed Arnold Volunteer of the Year Award’ at the Fountain Valley Rotary’s annual dinner.

David is a fixture in Fountain Valley and surrounding area. Besides running Fountain Valley Bowl - known as one of the best bowling establishments in So. Cal., he started the Kelly Osborn Memorial Foundation which raised and awarded more than $300 thousand in scholarships to students since 1986. He serves on other boards and commissions always looking for ways to improve the local community.

David was a great choice to receive this honor. Thank you, David for all you do. I’m proud to have you in my District!

Experience Fountain Valley

"Experience Fountain Valley" was a huge success. My office along with Supervisor Andrew Do’s, worked closely together with the City of Fountain Valley, the FV Restaurant Association, and the FV Chamber of Commerce, to plan and host this event. The main beneficiary of the funds raised went to the Fountain Valley Fire Department.

I want to commend the hard-working event committee and their volunteers, all of the participants, and of course, the hundreds of attendees who purchased tickets in support. What a great community event!

Great Pacific Airshow

The Great Pacific Airshow held its 4th Annual event this October in Huntington Beach. It is an honor and pleasure to be a staunch supporter of this event from its inception.

This year’s Airshow set quite a few milestones and I am very proud of Kevin Elliot and his staff at Code Four. The biggest one being it was the first time in the U.S. there were three military demonstration teams at the same show - The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, The Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds, and the Royal British Air Force Red Arrows.

Thank you to the hundreds of volunteers who were in the hot sun for three days ensuring everyone had a good time. Thank you to HB Police, HB Fire, and the OC Sheriff’s Department, who were highly visible and ensured this family-friendly event was safe for the over two million attendees who came to Surf City over the weekend. Great job, everyone!

Your District
Buena Park

Costa Mesa


Fountain Valley

Huntington Beach

La Palma

Los Alamitos

Newport Beach


Seal Beach


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