To listen to Hector Almazar and Steve Mensinger talk about the Costa Mesa Motor Inn you would think they're talking about two entirely different motels. Mensinger, the city's Mayor Pro Tem believes the place is a flophouse and is the #1 worst motel in his city for health & safety violations and police calls. Mensinger, along with Mayor Jim Righeimer believed the city was spending too much money on excessive police calls to about a dozen motels. Mensinger and Righeimer say the cost is about a half million dollars a year on excessive calls and both think their new ordinance about excessive police calls at motels and hotels will make a difference. They believe about a dozen of these lodging businesses are the primary offenders. They think they're not managed well and, as a result, have too many problems resulting in too many calls for police service.
Mensinger says the Costa Mesa Motor Inn is the #1 offender. Amazar isn't buying it. He doesn't think there are as many calls to his motel as city officials are saying and wants proof. It doesn't matter, though, the city council approved the new law 3 to 2 that sets a limit on how many police calls one can have before motels and hotels have to start paying for them. It's based on the number of motel rooms at the business. Says Almazar, "If we are making too many we don't mind paying for them, but we want to see the calls."