Wednesday, September 23, 2009

SCAG Boss Hasan Ikhrata Confesses To Sierra Madre City Council That He Runs A Rubberstamp Operation / Joe Mosca Fired From COG?

They had an entire army of SCAG officials and followers out to last night's City Council meeting, but when you get right down to it they didn't really have a whole lot to say. They blustered, they pontificated, and Hasan Ikhrata even made a veiled threat to Mayor McGillivray about "the disservice" she would do to the community if we were pulled out of SCAG. You could almost hear in his words the distant rumble of indignant patriarchy.

But when Don Watts, Kurt Zimmerman and MaryAnn McGillivray held the SCAG faithful's feet to the fire, what defense did they fall back on? "It's not our fault!" "We tried!" "The state mandates RHNA numbers, we can't do anything about it!" So it is just as we've always said here on The Tattler, SCAG is for all intents and purposes merely a rubberstamp for Sacramento, and has no real power to bargain for anything. In other words, they're a particularly ineffective middleman, a distraction that does little more than serve as a shield for the real culprits in the campaign to force hyperdensity down the throats of cities such as ours, Sacramento. That plus its patrons in the realty and redevelopment lobbies.

SCAG, you see, is just following orders.

Sierra Madre declined to authorize the spending of the $1,000 it would take to renew our membership in SCAG for now, instead taking a wait and see stance. MaryAnn McGillivray and Don Watts will be attending some future SCAG confabs to find out if our continued membership in this apparently powerless organization is worth even that relatively small sum.

The City Council voted 3 to 2 to select Michael Howard to the Canyon Committee. Joe Mosca and John Buchanan fielded the losing candidate, and Glen Lambdin was sent home with an empty plate. Apparently combining the terms "Glen Lambdin" and "well-balanced committee" struck the majority on the City Council as being something of an oxymoron. The City Council did unanimously decide that a moratorium on new building in the Canyon was the right thing to do, and tasked staff to prepare documents that will allow a final vote on the matter. More proof that there is a God in heaven.

Tim Hayden's shameful attack on Michael Howard was an embarrassment to the values and decency of this community.

The highlight of the evening for this observer was the beginning of a process that will likely result in Joe Mosca being relieved of his SGVCOG duties. The reason being his poor attendance at COG functions as revealed in the meeting minutes published on this organization's website. After hearing from SCAG about the importance of participating in the activities of the regional planning organizations, certainly we need to have a liason that will actually show up at the meetings. Once staff prepares the necessary documents, the eminently qualified Don Watts will likely serve as our new liason to the San Gabriel Valley Council Of Governments. The vote to move this process forward was 3 to 2.

Joe Mosca's response to the intiating of the process to knock him from his SGVCOG perch was typical. He admitted that there are many "things I have missed," but went on to claim that he is personally committed to COG. Then he blustered to Mayor MacGillivray that "you don't even know what COG means!" And then, in a statement fraught with pathos, actually blurted out, "Do you know how embarrassing that would be?"

It is nice to see that Joe Mosca could soon be suffering from the very thing his former supporters have experienced these last 3 years. Embarrassment.

Kurt Zimmerman delivered a withering blast at the Mountain Views "News" over its apparent failure to live up to the standards a paper must meet if it wishes to remain an adjudicated publication. Something that could result in the paper losing its legal advertising contract with the City of Sierra Madre. Cited by Councilman Zimmerman was the paper's failure to share subscription information despite repeated requests from the City that it do so. Also cited was the widely suspected inability of the "News" to publish regularly, and on the same day every week. Also adjudication requirements.

If it is shown that the paper has not lived up to its obligations, Sierra Madre would be within its rights to take the matter to Court and file a complaint. If the complaint should stand we would be free of having to support this highly contentious paper with our tax dollars.

Oh, and the Alverno situation is now in the hands of the lawyers. Guess we'll have to stay tuned for more news on that one.

An incredibly momentous meeting. One of the most remarkable I have witnessed to date. We will have more to say on these matters as the week goes on.


  1. Re: Alverno, if they could have afternoon weddings, limit the booze to wine and beer, and tone down the music, it seems to me that the problems could be solved. However, It sounded to me tonight, that the neighbors will not be satisfied with that, or any other compromise - they're gearing up for their real fight, and that's the expansion of the sports facilities and other buildings.

    SCAG is another matter. It looks like we should lean on our elected officials Adams and Huff. With Adams facing a recall election, he might be pursuaded to fight in Sierra Madre's behalf on housing matters to get support of the voters.

  2. This was the meeting of meetings. So many things were met head on and you could have cut the atmosphere with a knife. To see our City Council speak real hard truth to SCAG was government at its best. We have a lot to be proud of.

  3. MacGillivray, Watts and Zimmerman, all looking

    out for you, the people of Sierra Madre.

    What a delightful concept in today's political


  4. I love our City Council. Now that was a great debate. Could you hear the cheers echoing from my house?

  5. Our mayor showed great leadership during the entire meeting.

  6. I'm confused. A few Council Meetings ago, Council Member Mosca insisted that he was not the City representative to SCAG. Last night he insisted that he was on a SCAG subcommittee.

    Why the flip flop?

  7. 8:07 That is a problem with Flipper. His story always changes depending what suits him.

  8. Scag reminds me of a fraternity hazing, where the freshman get paddled and yell, "hit me again sir!Thank you sir!

  9. Well, Sierra Madre has fired the first shot at an unrepresentative and cozy state oligarchy. I hope this will be discussed by like minded small cities to become organized, and push out the current set of political hacks in Sacramento at the next election cycle. They are simply dragging this state down. It's not about Democrats or Republicans, it's about cleaning a disfunctional house.

  10. 8:36, maybe that's exactly why the SCAGians were working so hard. I actually ended up having a grudging respect for the Imperial Valley guy who was the president. He seemed to believe in the good of SCAG and was fighting for its life. However!!!! How could anyone refute Don Watts' cold hard laying out of the facts. Don said "STAND UP" to the legislature, say no to the construction industry dominated mandates!!! BIA CAR run politicos were called out last night. Don scolded the Scagians with "YOU REPRESENT THE PEOPLE"
    Wow for DON.
    Joe thanked them for coming and made a point of saying how important they were.

  11. Crazy conspiracy theoristSeptember 23, 2009 at 8:54 AM

    Babbling Buchanan was not taking the events of the evening very well. Twice he made nasty insinuations about motivations of his fellow representatives. As if pushing a highly controversial developer on the canyon committee wasn't driven by a suspect motivation. For the sake of "balance"? Puleeeze.
    And of course, had to pontificate towards the end of every matter before the council.

  12. Still read the papersSeptember 23, 2009 at 9:00 AM

    Hey, did you hear Buchanan claim that the Newsviews was out regularly???
    Where does he live????
    He said he always sees it in the racks.
    He must be seeing other throw always, cuz that paper is not regular.
    I know, I've looked for it.
    The question is How can that be proved.
    Can the printer verify?

  13. We are truly lucky that we have three people with integrity on the council.
    Thank you Mr. Zimmerman, Mr. Watts, and Mayor MacGillivray.

  14. zzzzzzzzzzzz John B bores me zzzzzzzzSeptember 23, 2009 at 9:16 AM

    embarrassed said Joe?

    no Joe, you've got it backwards. I and some others don't care about "your" embarrasment, you brought all of that upon yourself and deservedly so.

    However, we are more embarrassed that we elected you and fell for your line of bull hookey.

    That won't happen again. Your scam is over.

    And John B, if you happen to read this, we or a least I will not vote for anybody you secretly or openly support, especially Shirtless Pete. (the same for Lambin, Webb Martin (+any other realtors, Doyle or Torres)

    and John, can you please just shut up? for once?

    the residents near Alverno need to grow up - I can understand the booze and parties and the city not enforcing the ordinances, but to not let the school have sports fields? don't count on my support. or, why not let Dorn Platz buy the facility and then you can really have some noise.

    hey, still read the papers, the answer is yes. any advertiser has the right and the business duty to ask and receive printer certification of the actual press run, however Susan won't provide that, which is ethically wrong, but ethics aren't part of the ownership's vocabulary.

  15. Council Member Zimmerman described how SCAG tried unfairly to cram 225 new houses and/or condos down our throats. Good for him!

    In contrast, Council Member Mosca couldn't stop complimenting that dreadful association of governments and, in fact, said at the end of the Council meeting, how he was going to remain on a SCAG subcommittee whether the Council liked it or not. Shame on him!!!

  16. Liked Zimmerman's comment that SCAG should be fighting for us in Sacramento instead of fighting against us over the RHNA (housing number) allocations.

  17. And 9:18, Zimmerman put paid to the scag person who tried to get an official in Sacramento to threaten the city with legal action if Measure V went forward. Anybody got the specifics on that one?
    I knew the will of the majority of the people in this town was being ignored for years, but I didn't know someone from scag actually took that kind of action. Disgusting.

  18. This would be the one who spoke most eloquently last night on behalf of SCAG:

    Jon Edney

    Councilman Jon Edney (City of El Centro) serves as the current President of the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) and has represented the Imperial County cities for a number of years as a SCAG Regional Councilmember for District 1.

    During his tenure with SCAG, Edney has chaired the Community, Economic, and Human Development Policy Committee, and the Southern California Regional Housing Assessment sub-committee. He has also served as Vice Chair of the Administration Committee and Second Vice President for the Regional Council.

    President Edney was first elected to the El Centro City Council in 2003 and has been active in the El Centro community for many years. He served as a Trustee for the El Centro Elementary School Board from 1998 through 2003, including two terms as President. He was Imperial County Grand Jury Foreman in 1992-1993. He also has served as President of the Imperial County Board of Realtors and has been re-elected to serve as Treasurer for 2009. He served 3 years as a State Director for the California Association of Realtors. In February of 2008, Edney was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, where he serves as the only representative from Imperial County.

    Councilman Edney is also President of Imperial Valley Real Estate Services, Inc., the Valley’s largest property management company and serves as Vice Chairman of the Board for Community Valley Bank. He has been married for 26 years to his wife Mary and they have three adult children

  19. Joe, as a politician, is a mamby pamby kiss butt self serving whiny ego manical what's in for me lie to your face crybaby and he once again proves that his whole deceptive political platform for Sierra Madre was about himself and his floundering career, he's a snake oil salesman of the worst ilk. He doesn't remotely care about Sierra Madre, he cares about Joe's image, which is severly tarnished and at least we can take comfort that he's been exposed before he could do real harm to the city and our future.

    and that's just an opinion

  20. I thought it was courageous of Council Member Kurt Zimmerman to point out that The Mountain Views News was published on an irregular basis and that its publisher steadfastly and unreasonably refused to divulge the number of the paper's subscribers.

    He was also the only member of the Council to vote agains the renewal of the paper's contract with the City.

  21. you'd think that the Sierra Madre Weekly would at least report on the MV Whatever and it's owner's refusal to comply with city requests

    isn't that newsworthy?

    that paper lost any shred of creditability when Katina left it

  22. Jon Edney is President of SCAG and a high mucky muck in the Imperial Valley Real Estate industry? And he's going to represent our interests to Sacramento? And there's nothing SCAG can do about RHNA numbers? Methinks the fox is in the henhouse...

  23. Poster 9:21

    It's actually a very interesting story, which Council Member Zimmerman first told a few years ago at a Council meeting.

    It seems that former Mayor Bart Doyle, (who was formerly active in SCAG) called the Housing and Community Development Office in Sacramento in the midst of the Measure V campaign. He asked HCD to send the City a letter threatening some sort of legal sanction if Measure V was approved. The HCD dutifully complied. Bart's intervention came to light because the letter from HCD was sent to Beth Buck and published on her pro-development website the Downtown Dirt before the City even received it. Zimmerman saw the letter on Buck's website and called the the City Manager to ask why copies of the letter had not been given to th Council Members. The City Manager advised him that the City had never received such a letter. At that point, Zimmerman called the HCD and discovered Bart's clumsy attempt to derail Measure V.

  24. So the SCAG President Joe Ednay was the State Director for the California Association of Realtors (CAR). And, CAR donated thousands to defeat Measure V.

  25. Hey, 9:43 a.m.

    Thank you for the update on Doyle's continued attempts to sell Sierra Madre down river. He's a monster of many colors.

    Sorry to have missed the council meeting but thank you, John, for the recap. Sounds like a lot of really GOOD things happened last night!!

  26. As reported on the Tattler 6/2/09 Joe's lack of attendance violates Riggin Rule #39

    "Don't accept an appointment or nomination to a Board, Commission, or Council unless you expect to attend 99.9999 percent of the regular and special meetings, including inspection trips, briefings and public functions where your presence is expected ... If your participation falls below 85 percent during any six months' period you should tender your resignation. You aren't doing your job. You aren't keeping well enough informed to make intelligent decisions, and you are making other people do your work for you and assume your not inconsiderable responsibility. Your effectiveness and the regard for your opinions by other members will be in direct ratio to your attendance."

    He should have stepped down when the writting was on the wall and not been embarassed.

  27. SCAG President Ednay said last night that all cites would love to pass slow growth initiatives, but IT DOESN'T DO THEM ANY GOOD. That BUILTOUT is not an accepted reason to refuse RHNA numbers.
    Yeah, CAR How to defeat Slow Growth Initiatives stuff for sure.
    He's got guts to come here where we beat his CAR so bad.
    Gave us even more validation.
    Measure V for all cities who want to preserve who they are!!!

  28. I'm new to the blog and confused. The MVN publishes on a an irregular basis and refuses to provide the City with any info regarding the number of its subscribers. Failure to publish on a regular basis and having too small a list of subscribers can be bases for challenging the paper's adjudication.

    So, why is Council Member Buchanan claiming that Council Member Zimmerman has an ulterior motive by bringing these salient facts to light? Seems like Zimmerman's ulterior motive is telling the truth and doing what's right for the City.

  29. Absolutely right 10:41. Mr. Zimmerman is known for his honesty.
    Bucahnan sees ulterior motives in everyone except himself and Joe.
    He's projecting.

  30. John & Joe pretend to have intelligence and integrity. MaryAnn, Don and Kurt really do.

  31. Next time we need to fight the RHNA numbers on our water limitations since build out isn't good enough. We don't have enough of it to support more people. An don't forget we must also zone for the homelss in addition to RHNA. And what is this crap about more RHNA number in 2012? Our housing element was to go through 2014 I thought.

  32. 9:26
    Hey, that's my opinion as well!
    You're reading my mail?
    Good I know why MacGillivray, Zimmerman and Watts didn't really take this guy too seriously.
    ONE HUNDRED AN SEVENTY THOUSAND DOLLARS "donated" to dirts, such as Glenn Lambdin, Bart Doyle, Rob Stockley, Webb Martin et all to fight the good folks of Sierra Madre's right to vote on Measure V.

    Total SHAME on Buchanan and Mosca for pushing unscrupulous and repulsive Tim Hayden's choice for Canyon Committee, town thug/bully, Glenn Lambdin.
    That went over real big with Kurt Zimmerman and Don Watts. They were our HONEST councilmember's who started Measure V for the folks of Sierra Madre (and won), they were abused and cruixified by dirts, and Glenn Lambdin (the disgrace of this community) sued them for the wording of Measure V. (He lost anyway) John Buchanan, Mosca and Lambdin's pal, the late Jim Snider, defamed Zimmerman and Watts on the porn websites supported and run by the dirts.
    ZIMMERMAN and WATTS won Measure V, anyway.
    Yeah, Buchanan and Mosca, Zimmerman and Watts are going to react to your support of Lambdin, shall we say....unfavorably?

    And to Joe Mosca:
    Why do you persist Joe? Why do you persist in trying to insult and argue with MaryAnn MacGillivray? Mayor MacGillivray can OUTCLASS you, OUT TALK you and OUT THINK every time.
    When you go up against her at her very best.....well.....we all saw what happened last night at midnight. You're finished, Joe.

    To Buchanan:
    "Joe works hard" perhaps, but he works hard for the SPECIAL INTERESTS of DEVELOPMENT.....Not for the residents of Sierra Madre.
    You made an ass of yourself last night.
    Your jealous dread of Kurt Zimmerman is only matched by Joe's jealous dread of MaryAnn.

    To all you other DICs (downtown investors club) who are reading this.....we're glad you lost your money on the DSP. I pray it will continue to go badly for you all.

    Just my opinion. :)

  33. OK, you've been missed! Your insights and common sense left a hole in the day's reportage at the Tattler!

  34. An informed citizenry is SCAG's worst enemy. They got their butts handed to them last night.

  35. Sierra Madre business ownerSeptember 23, 2009 at 11:35 AM

    Yippee! Old Kentucky is back!

  36. 10:52, that crap, new RHNA by 2012, was what SCAG Pres Realtor Ednay said the state was forcing on us all in cahoots with the implementation of SB375, aka uberdensitytransportationbeehives for the sake of the construction/realty consortium.

  37. 11:34, Amen.
    An informed citizenry is the best thing about America.
    Now if we could just get some more of the Alverno crowd, pro and/or con, to care about more issues!!!

  38. Old K, I don't think Joe works hard. I think maybe he wants people to think he works hard more than he actually does.

    He seems like the kind of guy who will work hard to get his picture taken, or work hard to make a elder remember his name. But actually work?

    He does work on saying thank you to one and all, that's for sure.
    He fawned in a most embarrassing way over the scaggies last night.

  39. President Ednay is at the top of his game. The California Association of Realtors must be very proud that they have infiltrated SCAG to that degree.
    Ednay has done just what the association coaches realtors to do.

  40. Some people work hard. Other people talk a lot about how hard they work. Joe is in the latter category.

  41. Sir Eric, can you post the link to your article discussing CAR's booklet on how to defeat slow growth measures?

    I find it distressing that SCAG's President and self-proclaimed champion of small towns, which are fighting their housing allocations, was CAR's former director.

  42. Hip,hip,hooray for the Canyon. Tim, Oak Tree Killer, Hayden Estates is a perfect mouthpiece for Lambdin and the pro-development crowd. Rude, obnoxious, self-serving and arrogant bully who has single handedly caused the loss of more mature Oaks in the Canyon than any previous developer in 40 years. After undermining the Oaks, they all fell, on top of Michael Howards house, causing damage each time. With the loss of so many of the Oaks on the hillside, the houses below were inundated with water flowing off of his lot and flooded two houses below with over 300,000 gallons of water, causing further damage to his neighbors homes. And this is the speaker for the pro-development group? So happy that so many were able to witness the true character of this creep and those who he would support.


    This is what SCAG promotes.

  44. from above article:

    Hasan Ikhrata, executive director of the Southern California Association of Governments, said during the regional planning agency's annual meeting in La Quinta that meeting state mandates to reduce greenhouse gases will require local agencies to encourage more residential building in urban areas. Building in existing neighborhoods, he said, will keep Southern California from spreading farther and farther away from city centers and lead to shorter trips for commuters.

    Sound familiar? Yeah, I thought so too.

  45. Last night's meeting was definitely "MUST SEE TV!"

  46. 1:25, think there's any chance the playbacks will occur?
    Or will there be more 'technical difficulties'
    It's supposed to be on tonight at 5:30.

  47. Treelady, thanks very much for that information.
    I knew that every canyon resident I've met distrusts Hayden and Lambdin, but I didn't hear those specifics before.

  48. Zero Population Growth NowSeptember 23, 2009 at 1:37 PM

    From Anonymous 3:19 link: "SB375 requires agencies like SCAG to develop plans for how to make Californians less dependent on cars. The state requirement, which passed the Legislature last year, says cities and counties must develop plans for how to stop urban sprawl."

    Birth control would bring the same results including fewer cars, less impact to the environment and less greenhouse gases! In as little as 20 years the effect would be fewer cars and less urban sprawl.

  49. Local Government Advocacy Handbook
    Produced by
    The Local Governmental Relations Committee
    August, 2001

    For all newbies to the blog. Start saving these links which are provided by the research team.

  50. Been there, done thatSeptember 23, 2009 at 1:44 PM

    Sir Eric has done great articles about the absurdity of increasing pollution with dense building to cut back on a smaller amount of pollution from cars.
    Demand cleaner cars.

  51. 1:25
    Thanks for the reminder. Please call city hall everyone and ask about the replay!

    At the very end of the tape/meeting you'll witness and hear the shocking remarks by Buchanan directed at MacGillivray, Zimmerman and Watts.....insulting and out of control.

    Hey, Neuroblast?
    We could use a YouTube on this one. Buchanan isn't really worth it, irrelevant as he is.
    However, this was in response to his pal Mosca's unbelievable reaction to MacGillivray appointing Don Watts to the COG.
    By the way, this was an excellent decision by the Mayor. Watts is an architect, preservationist (a real one) and a slow growth expert. Seems the COG could use someone qualified as Don, for balance?

  52. Old Kentucky,
    I would love to post segments of last nights greatest hits. I will contact the research team and get on it.

  53. Thanks, friend.
    It's at the very end of the meeting. Good stuff.

  54. both John and Joe have lost their collective minds - I don't know how they even show their face in town anymore



  56. I could not make the meeting nor do I have cable. But, thanks to all of you and the great Sir Eric I realize I missed a great show that could have never even been written. "Ya had to be there."

    Thanks again to our brilliant Mayor, and Don and Kurt. They stand out not only in our town but above the rest, because they are intelligent, ethical, well educated, work for the people and have CLASS. We are blessed!

    We have to get the rest of Sierra Madre informed and realize this is their town and they are government!

  57. Finally was able to watch the meeting as it got around to the exchanges re MVN and liaison. My heart went pitty-pat watching real pros represent the citizens. No BS uttered three times, no self aggrandizing or grandstanding, just cut to the chase and put into action the mandate given to the CC by the people - get our money's worth and make sure we're represented! Great job!

  58. Joe has become a bratty boy up on the council, it's embarrasing to watch

    and i agree with the other posters, i wish John would stop talking. at least 90% of what he says is grandstanding, he must be a bore at work

  59. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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