Friday, May 4, 2012

So Why Last Night's One Hour Closed Session Meeting With the Planning Commission?

There are two reasons why the City would hold a closed session meeting such as the one we saw last night. The first would be because somebody is suing the Planning Commission and there are sensitive legal matters that cannot be spoken about in public. The other would be because there is a personnel issue, which also cannot be discussed in a public meeting. Somebody is either going to be disciplined or even fired for whatever it is you would need to do in the City of Sierra Madre to actually have something like that happen.

But that is it. Otherwise business must be dealt with in the full view of the public. It would be a violation of the Brown Act to not conduct a City meeting out in the open. This is a fairly clear cut issue.

So last night Sparky the Colantuono & Levin lawyer wangled an hour long closed session meeting with the Planning Commission. This announcement came down at the last minute, and was done with such great immediacy and haste that even certain City Councilmembers were not informed of this rather extraordinary action. And what makes this event even more astonishing is that there are no legal actions going on against the Planning Commission. And they certainly aren't firing anybody since this committee doesn't have any employees. Technically, since they are all volunteers, they aren't even employees themselves.

Plus if there is a lawsuit going down against the City, it isn't something that the Planning Commission would be dealing with. Going into closed session with the Planning Commission to discuss legal issues would make about as much sense as going into closed session on that topic with the 4th of July Parade Committee. It is not what these people do. Lawsuits and legal concerns in general are the purview of the City Council alone.

So what went down last night? I don't really know. Obviously my invitation got lost in the mail. But my guess is that Colantuono & Levin, working on the behalf of some shadowy entity that is not the taxpayers, was attempting to twist the arms of the Planning Commission on the combined Kensington/Measure V issue. Why else would they be taking so extraordinary a chance on something as legally dicey as this?

We are in the unfortunate position of having to pay absurd amounts of money to a legal firm that works against our interests. We've said that here before, and certainly the drumbeat to get rid of this faithless law firm has grown louder this year.

Here is another question. Assuming I am correct here, who is Colantuono & Levin actually working for here? They are paid out of our taxes, but obviously feel no obligation to work in ways that benefit the taxpayers. So who do they answer to? And how is it certain parties continue to have these kinds of privileges in what is supposed to be our town? To the point where they can call a closed session meeting with a committee they have business with and the designated City Attorney?

These were very unusual doings last night.

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

65 comments:

  1. So much for transparency.

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  2. The City Attorneys work at the leisure of our City Manager. This is her serfdom. Until she is removed, the corruption and shadiness will continue.

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    Replies
    1. 7:05, the city attorney is hired and can be fired by the council, not the city manager.

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    2. They are all still working for the dirt crowd.

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  3. My guess this is an attempt by the City Attorneys with a "false flag" law suit to intimidate the city council, and general public.
    I am willing to bet, they have talked to the developers to force a fight over measure V.
    They do not have anything to loose, and all to gain.
    It is a nice going away present from the C&L pro development firm.
    GET RID OF THESE SHYSTERS NOW !

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  4. Did a meeting take place other than the closed session?

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  5. It's about control of the process. Developers, realtors, and government don't like the idea that the people should be making the development decisions in their town. They want that control back, and is why they spent so much money in attempt to stop Measure V.
    The dirt crowd are slowly loosing their grip on power, and the only way to get it back is in the courts.
    Levin Must Leave !

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    Replies
    1. Levin did leave after the mangling of the Proposition 218 process, kind of like her predecessor Colontuono, who left after mangling the Hillside Management Zone protections. Maybe City Attorney Porter will be leaving after mangling Measure V.

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  6. This is some bad juju.
    What has happened that could bring about a lawsuit?
    The Planning Commission is a great commission, and understands and fulfills its duties.
    I'd hate it if they were being lawyered into something.

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  7. The agenda for the closed meeting used that phrase we have heard so many times in our little town, "Anticipated Litigation", so somebody has rattled the sabers, but not actually sued yet.

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  8. This is very troubling.
    I hope it doesn't have anything to do with the third dirt on the council being recently elected....Mr. John Harabedian?
    I hope this is not the case.

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  9. Maybe they talked about potential litigation on the Meaglia Mansion?

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    1. Ah! Reason comes to the tattler... Yes. The Meaglia Mansion is a much more likely candidate for potential litigation at this point in time. Billy Shields has acquiesed to a Measure V vote; the City has options. How much more immiment is the Meaglia lawsuit?

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    2. It's a shot in the dark. Maybe it's the Meaglia, maybe its the Kensington. Maybe it's another case.

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    3. To assume that is not the Alf that was discussed behind closed doors last night would be sheer and careless idiocy. Given the intense focus on this issue, and it being the topic of the public meeting itself, the chances are pretty good that it was.

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    4. I sense a misdirection play from the multiple-headed Steve.

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    5. I hear they were planning a secret surprise birthday party for Steve. It is to take place at St. rita's and be advertised by flyers left on the windows of parishioners.

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  10. Somebody is obviously panicked by the residents getting a direct say so on downtown development. This is getting very serious.

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  11. So, will someone who was watching give us the highlights? Sometimes life gets in the way of viewing...

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    Replies
    1. Watching the closed door meeting. I am sure a lot of people would like to talk with that person. But if you wish to view the regular meeting, please refer to the SMTV3 site. It is all there.

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  12. Sierra Madre Meeting Replays
    Sierra Madre City Council
    5:30pm – Tuesday*, Wednesday, Thursday*, Saturday
    7:00am – Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Sunday
    On demand at: http://sierramadre.kgem.tv (available approx. 72 hrs after meeting)
    Sierra Madre Planning Commission
    5:30pm – Monday, Friday, Sunday
    7:00am – Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday

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  13. People need to read the voters empowernent act. "Measure V" for th
    e truth will set you free....Whatever misdirection C & L try to pull it is a very simple measure.
    Read the law, the alf is noncompliant.

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  14. and to think that Nancy Walsh is sitting in on these meetings

    her summary would be "it was nice"

    probably wondering what these meetings have to do with square dancing

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  15. Everybody chillax. Sandi Levin is watching out for us. Her employees, too. They love Measure V. And they love you, too. Josh and Nancy want to do what is right here. And John Harabedian? He is doing some polling and will get back to us soon.

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    1. Coluntono & Levin are champing at the bit for a challenge to Measure V! It's an opportunity to raise money after all their sources of revenue are drying up since local municipalities are cutting back. Sierra Madre's always good for a few hundred thousand to defend a lawsuit. Little Johnny doesn't do C&L law; he's a criminal defense attorney but...

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  16. Now here is a coincidence. Joe Mosca was seen enjoying a delightful breakfast with Nancy Walsh this morning downtown. Looks like the thin white duke is back in town for a visit.

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    1. Hopefully he is here to sell his house.

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    2. The Bosca fellowship is about to run out and Joey's looking for a job? Maybe he's airing the linens in the house he and Matt claim to still own...

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    3. Oh ugh.
      He's here to reap the rewards from helping Harabedian, the one and only one part of his endorsements and email campaigns that he can feel good about.

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  17. yep, Mosca is in town, that explains the dark clouds hanging over town. You know how he sweet smiles all the ladys, what is he doing with NW, nothing good thats for sure.

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    Replies
    1. They were at Starbucks. Explains the long lines at Beantown this morning.

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  18. Just like the OK Corral... the gunslingers are slipping back into town. Torres and Joffee at the Re-Org. Doyle sliding out from under his rock. Mosca appears after a suspicious absence. Buchanan is chairing the CRA Oversight Committee. Yip... there's going to be a shootout... featuring our money...

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    1. Or, you could just substitute Montecito, LLC for gunslingers!

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    2. Where is Harry Potter when we need him?

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    3. Measure V is what they hate the most. Get ready gang, this is war.

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  19. The Tattler - News for the bias and conspirators. A censored blog who only posts personal bias slanted in to their own agenda. The Tattler - a literary Terrorist who invokes fear into the citizens of Sierra Madre by the threat of development, taxes, political conspiracies.

    And at one point I actually believe this crap.

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    Replies
    1. 10:38 is filled with such passionate intensity that verb tense has been transcended.

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    2. Unclear on your conclusion: "crap" as in what is being said about the Tattler being slanted or what you are saying about the Tattler being slanted (your own or someone else's crap).

      I don't know what was or is being sensored, my posts get through. So if you know of censored posts they must be yours. Maybe you should remember what the moderator has said in the past about what will not get posted (vulger, hateful, attack dog stuff--I would guess your use of the word "crap" is mild to what you have tried to post in the past).

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    3. You can always tell when the blog has hit it's target. The trolls show up with their spicy language.

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  20. 10:38 needs to cut down on his belladonna intake.

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  21. (self censored)... the guy is such a smuck. Sure he can come back to SM to visit all his gal pals, maybe to sign escrow papers (wish, wish), but anyway, not surprising it would be with 'empty-headed, ex-tapdancer Mayor pro-tem Walsh that you would find him smoozing with in front of the Star. Gag a maggot!

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  22. What do they say? Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out there?

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    1. Well there you are. The Tattler is a conspiracy. I guess we have now gone full circle.

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  23. The agenda has been posted at City Hall already. It was up there last night, as a matter of fact. This indicates one thing: The City feels confident that Harabedian will vote in their favor. Otherwise they wouldn't release the agenda any earlier than Saturday, when they are legally required to do so. Normally they would give us the least amount of time to read the staff reports and prepare. But if they have the necessary three votes, they don't need to be concerned about this.

    One other thing ... At the last council meeting Mr. Koerber requested a future agenda iten=m, the issue of the city attorney. It is NOWHERE to be found on this Tuesday's agenda!

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  24. I'm sure they will d - r - a - g their feet over agendizing a new city attorney, at least until they can put the ALF through without a Measure V vote.

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    1. Uhuuummmm... isn't today a "dark Friday"? If so, it is the practice (most of the time) to post the Agenda by 5:00 pm on the last working day of the week. Now it isn't alway the case, but most of time it is. About the rest of your post, I'm sure you're correct.

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    2. Killing things like Measure V is what butters the bread at Co-Levin. They are no friend of Sierra Madre.

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    3. Maybe so but I can't find it on the City website. If it's at the Library and at City Hall it's as good as not posted because 10 people will take a look. If you're one of the 10 can you let us know what's on it? The old legs won't let me walk that far today.

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  25. Even if it is dark Friday there maybe folks in city hall trying to get work done they need to finish by deadlines. Probably staff reports. Agenda published and posted, more work on the staff reports, but they all better be ready the 72 hours in advance, for the city council members to be able to study them and for the public, too. No public access to staff or business needs until Monday. They have had four weeks to ready some of these items as there was no real meeting two weeks ago (the new swimming pool contract), nor two weeks before that as that was the night of the elections. So, agenda items rolled over since the last meeting on March 27, the better part of 5 weeks.

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  26. Several items worth noting on the CC agenda, but pay close attention to item #7. Hidden in the stretegic plan is to make the Green Committee a Commission. This would give them authority over the General Plan Update Committee to do their dirty "green" deeds. i.e. stack and pack in the downtown district to save green house gasses.

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  27. The dirts must long for the days when they could control the information flow in this town. Long gone are the times when the only place residents could get their news was from Censoring Susie or The Rooster.

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  28. Fold 'em on the Green committe vs commission (all meeting rules/regs apply either way and there is no legal criteria to follow as the Planning Commission has). Better battles to fight. If they have the votes to push this then wait for a real important issue.

    Not only is this green stuff mostly wash these days, found another term: green tint. Even better. We have retired environmental scientists, educators, JPL researchers, CalTech professiors living in town that could really help in this area but just let the Buchanan then-Moran now drivel go on. It will find its equlibrium and live or die as needed.

    I would even caution Capoccia and Kreober--don't vote against something that is no really big deal to just set up an artificial them/us. Wait for the real them/us. Abstain= or vote yes, with collegial reservations. Next.

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    1. So 3:25 you're for a Green Commission.

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    2. 3:25: Steve, is that you??

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    3. A bunch of fools make some bad investments in a downtown housing scheme gone wrong, and then we have to suffer their BS for years. Begone, dirts!

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    4. A bunch of fools? Hey, dude, these folks were Sierra Madre royalty, the crowned heads of cool, the intelligensia. Best and brightest. Snickering, pointing fingers, swirling their wine at the villa. We existed to buy the properties they were selling. They bought their own publisher(s) and printed their own newspapers to rub our noses in our own lack of any societal ascendancy.

      There is some justice in just how far they have fallen and how bad their judgement was.

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    5. I'll never forget the night that Glen Lamdin sat in the Mayor's chair and announced he had just as many degrees as Kurt Zimmerman, including a law degree. Sadly he didn't understand the difference.

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    6. Sierra Madre royalty. You mean like Bob Matheson? Talk about your arrogant Mayberry socialite.

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  29. 3:25 here. Nope not Steve, but I do like the way you go after him. You misidentified me just now,read my post again more carefully, but let's go on. I told Don, Kurt and MaryAnn the same thing when it came to Mosca for Mayor and look how making him the underdog created a support system that he should never have had. Committee vs Commission, no importa. I am for representation. Fought long and hard to out the Planning Commission back to 7 when a previous city council wanted to let the PC revert to 5 members due to attrition.

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    1. Poor Joe, the worst thing that ever happened to him is he finally got to be Mayor. Now he will be forever known as the infamous pol who lied to ge a water rate increase. Joe was better off being passed over and pouting about it.

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    2. Wadda ya think? Will Joe the Schmo run for Council in two years? Or will he throw his hat in the ring for the next Sacto spot? He's clearly not through with Sierra Madre.

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    3. Joe at one time imagined himself becoming a great political figure. Maybe even the next Barbra Boxer. But reality finally settled in and he has lowered his goals somewhat. Now he wants to be the next George Mauer.

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  30. I'll never get over The DIRT Council charging the Sierra Madre Community Nursery School a million dollars for that little sliver of land then turning around and paying $800,000 to the friends of Enid Joffee for that travesty of a park.

    Arrogant S**s, that's what they are!

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  31. Watching the replay of the PC. Great public comment from the neighbors to the project.

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  32. Couple of things reading through the posts. First I dont think Glenn Lambdin even went past Pasadena City College. I know he doesnt have a law degree. He is a smart man with his own thought out opinions.

    Im not up to speed on whats going on with Sierra Madre Community Nursery school. Why did Enid Joffe get $800K? Why is the city charging the school? is it back rent they forgot to collect? That would put the school out of business.

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