Friday, August 10, 2012

Freudian Slip? Agenda Report for the Green "Commission" Deliberations @ Next Tuesday's City Council Confab is Addressed to Mayor Buchanan

I don't know if Josh Moran's term as Mayor of Sierra Madre has been all that forgettable. After all, he was handed an historic defeat on his attempt to illegally circumvent Measure V in regards to the Kensington matter. And then, once it became obvious that his efforts had gone nowhere, laughably attempted to convince the City that he was for the vote the entire time. This despite God knows how much in City Attorney fees were spent, and on his authorization, in the attempt to convince the Planning Commission that a unit was actually a suite. As if language changes could somehow obviate a voter approved law.

However, it appears that, at least for City Staff, hearts still beat true for the departed Mayor John "Edison" Buchanan. Especially when it comes to his beloved Green Committee. Edison, of course, as one of the leading bulk greenhouse gas producers on this continent, is often a strong supporter of "green initiatives." I mean, why wouldn't they want to use the language and culture of the environmental movement to promote things such as high-density development in ostensibly green low-density communities such as ours? It is both good for business and public relations. And after all, we do live in Orwellian times.

The effort to elevate the Green Committee to a "Green Commission" is, according to their rather grandly entitled "Green Accords," driven by a pro-development agenda very similar to that of the old DSP crowd. The very kinds of development that were rejected by the voters when they passed Measure V in 2007. The following is what can be found at the faux green heart of these so-called "Accords."

Urban Design (Action Number 21): Adopt urban planning principles that advance higher density, mixed use, walkable, bikeable, and disabled-accessible neighborhoods, which coordinate land use and transportation ...

I don't know of anyone who is opposed to walking and biking, especially when it is somebody else that is doing it. But why would the people of Sierra Madre, who have time and again expressed their desire to keep this town as it is, want to adopt anything that promotes high density and mixed use development? Or elevates in status the people actually promoting such a thing?

As is also stated in the Green Accords, the Green Committee recognizes that the inclusion of this language in the General Plan is dependent upon the General Plan Update Committee taking their lead and adopting this junk. But what if the Green Committee were to be made into a full Commission, a body with far more authority than it has now? Would they then be in a better position to force language promoting "higher density" and "mixed use" development protocols into the General Plan?

Which is probably why this particular agenda report was addressed to a guy that hasn't been Mayor since last April. It smacks of his decidedly Machiavellian approach to running this city.

Caltrans apparently also believes that anything can be called "green"

When it comes to greenwashing decidedly anti-environmental initiatives, Caltrans is no slouch, either. If you think that the call to enable high-density mixed use development in the name of "green practices" is grotesque, then how about the Caltrans argument that freeway construction promotes clean air? This from LA.StreetsBlog.org (click here):

Derision Grows for Caltrans 710 Study That Argues for Massive Road Widening for Cleaner Air - When Streetsblog first looked at the alternatives proposed in 2009 for reducing congestion along the I-710 Corridor in Long Beach, Compton, South Los Angeles, Watts, and east Los Angeles, staff was already pushing for adding four lanes to the existing ten mixed use travel lanes. This would add four highway lanes along the already choking 18 mile corridor to an area already choking on exhaust fumes.

72 miles of freeway lanes ... in the name of cleaner air. Only in California.

Of course, this is the same Caltrans that wants to build the 710 Tunnel, which would then extend this ecologically ruinous corridor through Pasadena and right past Sierra Madre.

High density condo development is green, and freeways promote cleaner air. Only in California, indeed.

Happy Friday.

http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

53 comments:

  1. Does anybody know if Green Committee fans Nancy and Josh will be walking or biking to the City Council meeting next Tuesday?

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  2. Josh would have a nice flat ride to and fro but after Nancy coasted downhill to the city hall it would be a long uphill slog back home.

    You see, Sierra Madre is on a serious slope. There really are not a lot of casual bike riders in town and Saturdays we host some real hotshots but even they are horizontaling it across town after the slog up Santa Anita. And forget about our narrow and steep streets for the "senior" tricycle...too wide on the turns ... you need some real strength to bring that on a downhill coast to a halt.

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  3. I think Nancy would enjoy a sedan chair. One carried by two muscular men dressed only in loin clothes and sandals. You know how she feels about quality services.

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  4. I think it's a waste of time, money and energy to turn the Green Committee into a Green Commission.

    So who better to lead the effort than Buhanan?

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  5. you're damn right i want a 10 cent bag!August 10, 2012 at 7:22 AM

    When did we all become such conformist green dweebs?

    I pity the young and jobless as they face a grim, i mean green, future living in transit hub boxes. No driving for fun. No hell raising. No excited rush into a capitalist future. Just give me my public transport so i can get to my job, i mean intership, at the eco nonprofit. The man is selling them a bill of green goods to justify their diminished expectations and they are too naive to see it. Dopes.

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  6. I think putting "Mayor Buchanan's" name on there was deliberate. It seems obvious to me that neither Josh or Nancy even breathe without first getting his approval.

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  7. Q) What do the Green Committee and the UN have in common?
    A) They both talk a lot, but just can't seem to get anything done.

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  8. City Staff needs to hire a proof reader. $83,500 a year, with a full ride retirement in 18 years.

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  9. Hey Bucky!, You Back!?August 10, 2012 at 7:49 AM

    Gawd!

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  10. Instead of "Edison" you should call JB the "puppeteer." Is his the power behind the throne?

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  11. I get the protest against foolish waste - but on the other hand, a Green Commission will not actually do anything, so maybe it's just another business as usual for the city.

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    1. A green Commission's power will be in making sure things like minimum building sizes are determined for efficiency, etc., and adding another layer to the already many layered administration. This has the effect of increasing the "necessary" jobs at city hall.
      Just ask Inman about the "green" requirement laws that have been added over the last 4 years.
      This is how governments protect their pension plans.
      It's, afterall, only your money ...

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    2. We haven't been told what the commissions duties are yet, just that we need it.
      You will find out after the commission is formed.

      Have you ever heard of "rope-a-dope"?

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  12. They can recommend changes to the city's muni code which a (com)pliant city council can then do. Inch by inch they can work their high density desires into Sierra Madre

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  13. The Green Commission is a joke. Just another in a long line of things some groups are trying to push on Sierra Madre. If were going to put money into anything it should be for safety in our community. We've needed a Police Commission for many years. We have friends and neighbors trying to direct this police department. These friends and neighbors need unbiased, knowledgeable and honest information so that they can make the best decisions for the community at a fair price. First and foremost the Government is getting our tax money to provide protection of Life and Property, anything else is extra. Not so funny when other interests get in the way of our safety. Imagine having to raise your kids in an apartment and Matheson is your neighbor. If your neighbor destroys his place it's going to affect a lot of people, just ask the Red Cross. The Green Committee is fine, a Green Commission is a waste of time and money. Come on council, keep up the good work and not vote in a Green Commission. Council should be evaluating all the Commissions to see where we can streamline in a real Police Commission. Look at the $$$$ and make a decision. :)

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  14. 8:14 you need to seek the truth. Commissions cost money and have a big influence over the town.

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  15. The Green Committee was formed to assist the General Plan Update Committee in their deliberations of what "green" means, including the mandated parts of the General Plan that addresses the "green" areas. The Green Committee never did, as far as I know, consult with the GPUC. The GPUC is now in the editing stages of the General Plan and no other real changes are going to be made except by the Planning Commission and the City Council. The Green Committee has outlived its purpose and therefore should be disbanded, not made into a Commission. If they want to make the Green Committee a Water Conservation Committee, I would go for that.

    And, as one tattler said, maybe a Safety Committee that would address the Police and Fire Department issues. But you know, Elaine would never allow anyone to have control over one of her departments - she's already taken control over all the others so why lose one?

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  16. It seems obvious to me that the purpose of extending the existence of the Green Committee by turning it into a Commission is to help push forward certain kinds of high density development as dictated by Sacramento through such bad legislation as SB 375. In this way they would function as outside agents helping to push unfunded mandates upon Sierra Madre. Mandates that most people living here are very much against. This is not a pretty picture. We would be much better served if the Green Committee, its work now complete, simply faded away. The last thing we need is for them to perform a fifth column function on behalf of development agendas none of us want.

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  17. Not a slip, but just an indication of the laziness of the city staff by simply re-issuing a staff report that was prepared months to a year ago when they tried to pull something over on the public and push through the accords without anyone noticing. Fortunately, MaryAnn and others were on their toes and protested. Perhaps they think now after a cool-down period, we won't notice. Fat chance. Be there at the Council Meeting and remind them that the Green Committee should be dead as a dodo based on their purpose which was to be a subcommittee of the general plan update committee.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I think the Tattler has made sure that everyone knows. What an appropriate name for this blog, Tattler.

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    2. We think so, Steve. Thanks for noticing.

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    3. I thought Steve went away and promised to never come back?

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    4. Steve is in love with the Tattler. The anger shows how painful the rejection has been for him.

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    5. In a general law city, the Planning Commission has the job of a general plan update. A green commission is just another bunch of slots for political backers. Who runs this city anyway.

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  18. Check out the proposed 710 expansion down in Carson - a 14-lane freeway with a designated truck expressway from the Port of LA

    http://www.theleadtype.com/news/caltrans-proposes-truckway-widened-710-freeway-homes-businesses-destroyed/

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    1. Great. Put a tunnel under Pasadena and all of that crap ends up on our doorstep. So whatever happened to "going green?" Is that out the Caltrans/Metro window so Wal*Mart can get colorful plastic cutlery made in China a couple of hours quicker?

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  19. Uncle Bob on CivilityAugust 10, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    Let's face it.

    We have not had much fun with the Tattler since Crazy Carol went crazy a couple of weeks back. So, to get everyone going I have decided to move the discussion in a more entertaining direction. For your reading pleasure I submit this lecture on civic values delivered by Crazy Carol's close friend, arbiter of public civility, and noted KIDDIE PORN AFFICIANDO Uncle Bob Matheson! For convenience I have put the truly ironic parts in ALL CAPS:

    RE: MacGillivary Slams Gavel On Mosca -
    Sierra Madre Weekly March 25

    Hats off to Terry Miller for so accurately describing our town’s Bully Pulpit! Two generations ago, “bully” was an adjective meaning superb/wonderful. Now it describes some of our elected officials, they’re arrogant bullies on the pulpit that is our City Council!!

    Remember when elected officials served as “humble servants” of their constituents? Well, there’s nothing humble about the OUTRAGEOUS BEHAVIOR exhibited in Council chambers by certain, seated members. Watch some of the meetings!! It’s not difficult to identify the culprits, their DEMEANOR IS EMBARASSING AS IT IS INAPPROPRIATE.

    Now we have a clear choice in Sierra Madre, and a chance to CLEAR THE AIR OF THE FOUL BEHAVIOR that has TAINED THE CIVILITY of our City Council. Voters can reject OTHERS OF THIS ILK and elect three candidates who, I know, will put responsibility before rhetoric and CHARACTER BEFORE CHARACTER ASSASSINATION. Sierra Madre.

    Robert Matheson , Sierra Madre
    via sierramadreweekly.com

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    Replies
    1. Oh that Bob. You can only imagine what was up on some of the other screens of his computer when he was typing that. And didn't Matheson host Joe Mosca's campaign kick off party that year?

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    2. Street speak has it that the Crazy Unicorn Lady had her horn trimmed by her emploer and the only thing that kept her employed was a last minute appeal by the owner of a property she had listed that if she got fired, they'd take their listing elsewhere. Was very cool inside the Prudential offices that week. We won't be hearing much Tattler bashing from Carol Canturbury for awhile.

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    3. Civility and Character Assassination was something Nancy "We can take you out" Walsh ran on during her campaign. Since that election, we have seen nothing BUT character assassination by the one and only Walsh, Moran, Buchanan and when he was here, Mosca. We can never forget Walsh as she meligned Denise Delmar, chair of the General Plan Update Committee, and MaryAnn who was sitting right next to Walsh as she called for MaryAnn's resignation as liaison to the General Plan Update Committee. The grace and civility that MaryAnn demonstrated that night was something to behold. BTW, what was Walsh trying to do anyway? That has never come out. I guess it won't until the Plan comes before the Council.

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    4. Terry Miller is no friend of Matheson. He was one of the candlelight vigil people who were out in front of Matheson's house with candles and prayers for "uncle bob's" victims.
      Don't think old Matheson will be talking much to Mr. Terry Miller, as Mr. Miller would probably like to see Matheson behind bars or at least on the sex offender register.

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    5. I agree. Terry's pictures of the vigil were first rate, and they were seen everywhere. He was very generous with his time and work.

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    6. Terry is a supporter of anything that promotes himself or his illusion as a journalist.

      Delete
  20. 12:10,,,I don't think the USA or most any country could live without a lot that we get from China. Just don't eat the food or candy and look out for the honey. We just need to get the fuel costs down so there is no reason to build the 710 expansion.

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    1. What these people need to do is take the containers off the ships, put them on trains and take them inland that way. They don;t need to destroy the San Gabriel Valley with this stuff. The crooks running LA County must be in the pockets of the trucking companies and unions.

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    2. Yes, it should be rail infrastructure, but even more important, coal should not be shipped in open containers, that's toxic. There's a huge demand from China right now because the USA is using much less coal. It's not just stuff FROM China, made with imported raw materials, BTW. Think of it this way, if you buy imported goods, much of the cost is for gas and coal itself (shipping both ways, money in corporate pockets). So boycott Walmart while you're at it.

      http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-07-05/big-coals-hard-road-to-china

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  21. Wasn't the Alameda corridor supposed to transport the containers from the port to the warehouses?

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    1. Beijing vetoed it. Trucks are less costly.

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  22. Boycott Walmart, buy from Target.
    They give out money to education and care about people.

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  23. City Hall is the gang that can't think straight.

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  24. Boycotts don't work and usually are political in nature. Walmart has done lots for many small towns across the U.S. Just because they are not Union doesn't mean that they are not a good employer.

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    1. How many mom pop hardware stores and like businesses have been closed because of Walmart?....any idea sport?...it is in the thousands...do you know one of the leading factors why manufacturing has been flocking to china.....Walmart!..have never shopped..will never shop at a Walmart...Walton family can kiss my @ss

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  25. Wal*Mart reduces it's employees to wards of the state. Because they refuse to provide health care for the people who work in their stores, and don't pay them nearly enough so they can by their own, Wal*Mart employees are forced to turn to the government to care for such needs. In this way Wal*Mart is just another welfare mooch, subsidized by our tax money.

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    1. I hadn't thought of it that way before, and you are absolutely right.

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    2. And the difference between that and ObamaCare is what?

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    3. In the National Health Plan everyone pays into the insurance pool. WalMart employees for the most part now do not.

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    4. Under ObamaCare lots of people will get stuff for "free" meaning somebody else will have to pay for it. You knew that.

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  26. See the movie "Wal*Mart-The High Cost of Low Prices" and you will not shop at that slave wage store again.

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    Replies
    1. Not all the facts are true about Wal Mart and besides, there wouldn't be thousands who stand in line to get employment is that was so. True, they don't have a union, but they do give benefits.

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  27. Is it just me, or do Bruce Inman's initials on that agenda report look like a fly?

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  28. Josh was bummed a totally out dude when he found out that the "green committee" wasn't going to be him and some friends sharing a joint behind the Buc.

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    Replies
    1. That's the thing about the Buc for some guys. You can have a Bud, and some bud, with your buds.

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