Huntington Beach may annex Sunset Beach

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. Signs can be seen on several businesses and homes across Sunset Beach: "No on Sunset Annexation."

The small beachfront community is drawing a line in the sand when it comes to annexation.

Huntington Beach would absorb the unincorporated area with roughly 1,200 residents.

"It is upsetting, especially since you meet with them on different occasions and they often say, we know what's best for you without taking into consideration the people of this community," said Sunset Beach resident Diana Dodson. "

Last June, the /*Local Agency Formation Commission*/ put Sunset Beach in Huntington Beach's sphere of influence.

Sunset Beach was told it could not stay unincorporated in Orange County, so residents raised $100,000 for LAFCO to conduct a study to see if it's financially feasible for Sunset Beach to become its own city.

In the meantime, the Huntington Beach City Council has the power to annex without a public vote.

Sunset Beach may become part of Surf City USA, and that has many of the tiny community's residents riding a wave of anger and frustration.

"It's an opportunity they have because of the rules, but not a requirement," said Sunset Beach resident Jack Markovitz. They could take the high road, get more information and even put it to a vote of Sunset Beach residents or Huntington Beach."

"Don't take the right to vote away like they've done, treat us like we're human," said Sunset Beach business owner John Campregher. "They're not doing it right now. We're nothing, and that upsets me."

Huntington Beach has seen cutbacks in lifeguard personnel as well as police officers and firefighters. Bringing in Sunset Beach would mean more revenue.

"They have projected $820,000 in the first two years," said Laurie Payne of the city of Huntington Beach. "Following that would be $440,000."

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