Sunday, February 1, 2015

Did The Mountain Views News Cause Yet Another Important Development Related Meeting To Be Canceled?

Yes, they do have their issues.
City Hall does try to be transparent about the bad things that go on here in Sierra Madre. It is just that they would prefer to not do so very loudly. The last thing they need is yet more angry residents wanting to know how certain unfortunate things seem to reoccur.

Yet they do happen, and apparently with absolutely no consequences to the guilty parties. Which, in this particular case, appears to be either the oftentimes inept and rather sparse Mountain Views News, or City Hall itself. So, for your Super Bowl Sunday reading pleasure, we shall now reveal the latest reason for some quietly communicated City Hall transparency. Chances are very good that you had no idea this had even happened, and had we not picked up on it here at the constantly inconvenient Sierra Madre Tattler, you probably never would have.

The following comes to us from this Friday's edition of the always enlightening City Manager's Report to the City Council, as penned by Elaine Aguilar herself.


Dedicated followers of civic affairs in Sierra Madre should be able to read between the lines on this one. It would appear that the Mountain Views News, along with its publisher, the generously named Harriet Susan Carter Poole Henderson, has once again somehow failed to publish a Public Notice for an important city meeting dealing with a key development issue.

We just don't know why. At least yet.

To get to it, without this legally mandated Public Notice being published in last week's edition of the MVN, next Tuesday's Planning Commission meeting, which was supposed to deal with an extremely important issue related to the City's struggle to control McMansion development, had to be canceled by law.

As you perhaps recall, this is not the first time so strategically placed a public noticing error has occurred at the Mountain Views News. Last July the City Council saw a similar thing happen with the Public Notice to their meeting regarding a two year building moratorium. Something related to the troubling fact that our parched Water Department no longer has any water of its own.

Here is how City Hall got their transparency on over that mess (link).

City Council Consideration to Extend the Interim Moratorium
On July 8, 2014, the City Council adopted Ordinance No. 1357U, establishing an Interim Moratorium Ordinance Pursuant to Government Code Section 65858 on the issuance of all building permits and any discretionary approvals for construction of new development requiring new water service connections. The interim ordinance was an urgency ordinance, making it effective immediately. The Interim Ordinance 1357U will expire on August 22, 2014, unless the City Council takes action to extend the moratorium before it expires.

Originally, the City Council’s consideration of extending the interim ordinance was scheduled for the July 22nd meeting, but the public hearing notice was not printed in the locally adjudicated newspaper (the Mountain Views News) as required by law. This means that the City Council cannot consider extending the ordinance at the next Council meeting, instead the City Council will meet on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 at 6:30 pm, in the City Hall Council Chambers, to consider extending the moratorium for an additional 22 months and 15 days (until July 5, 2016).

The consequence to Ms. Henderson on that occasion was she had to cough up a couple of free ads. Something done in hopes of ameliorating anger in the community over what a few of us more suspicious souls believed was not really an error at all, but a deliberate attempt to delay something that was upsetting to a few of Henderson's development cronies.

I sincerely doubt that limiting the floor space of newly proposed jumbo wickiup projects in this town is any less upsetting to the MVN's McMansion-happy special interest friends.

By applying the "Fool Me Once, Fool Me Twice" rule, it would at least appear that we have an evolving behavior pattern here. Twice within 6 months legally required public noticing of an important City Hall meeting dealing with the curtailment of over-development in Sierra Madre somehow went missing from this town's adjudicated newspaper.

So who is at fault? I am not sure I really know. But here are 3 possible scenarios to consider.

1) Ms. Henderson is getting on in years, has become forgetful, and can no longer do her job properly.

2) Ms. Henderson feels this is unfair to her development and Realty pals, and wanted to help out as best she knew how.

3) City Hall screwed up, but didn't say anything because they figured everyone would blame Susan.

In my opinion any one of these is possible. And, of course, the fault could have been City Hall's.

However, not having any proof or additional inside knowledge on this matter, I cannot for certain claim that any of them is actually true. This is just speculation. Though, as I noted above, I do have my suspicions.

So what will the consequences be? Does this now get swept under the rug for a second time? Will the city allow Ms. Henderson to continue interfering with its important business? Intentionally or not? Will anyone from City Staff be called onto the carpet and made to explain?

That might make for an interesting City Council Agenda Item, don't you think? Obviously the people of Sierra Madre deserve a few answers.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

55 comments:

  1. I agree Susan Henderson is either inept, and unreliable, or unethical, unscrupulous, and diabolical.
    Can we get another publication for the city please?

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  2. I'm beginning to see conspiracy theories right here in River City!

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    Replies
    1. What is your explanation?

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    2. Yes 7:36, We've got trouble, trouble, trouble right here in River City!

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    3. I think there's something wrong. If a newspaper does the same thibg twice in six months, on very heady topics, there's a reason. The mod gave three possibilities. There are tear downs in the works whose thirty days might be up prior to the hearing. There are plans in that may pass because the changes to the footprint and R-1 aren't done. The planning commissioner head appears to be pro development. He is an architect as he likes to tell us over and over. That's where the money is. Salaries are coming up for review, so it could even be the city manager. There could be much speculation as trust in these people is not high.

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    4. It might give the newbies who showed up at the last council meeting to gather more ammo or big guns to be rude again. Anything is possible.

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    5. Good point. The lack of dependable noticing puts the city into possible legal jeopardy.

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  3. I think the city's ad got bumped to make room for the "How to take care of your kidneys" article.

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  4. Can you all please stop trashing this paper? I find it has much better absorbency than my old Sears catalogues.

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    Replies
    1. My budgies read it every week,

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    2. New masthead for the MVN:
      "Best fish wrapper in the San Gabriel Valley"

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  5. Why can't these ads run in the Sierra Madre Weekly? Or, better yet, on the city's website where they would be free?

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    Replies
    1. That's a matter for the state legislature. I wish they'd agree to that. They haven't - yet.
      And for the folks who are not online, there's the posting outside city hall, and the availability at the library.

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    2. The state legislature only care about what the lobbies that pay them campaign money want.

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  6. I don't think it was intentional or she was paid to delay any articles. I think she just plain forgot and most likely feels bad about it. You know if she was shopping at Victory Secrets again she could have been distracted, I've never shopped there so I can only imagine. Could have been one of her underlings didn't do her job and now poor Susan has to take the blame, again. So many reason why that never got published, the dog could have ate it, really, it could have. I'm sure Ms. Henderson will be making a big apology in her next issue, although she may choose to forget that.

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    Replies
    1. She forgot to apologize in July. Or maybe she was upset that people thought it was a big deal and didn't want to give them the satisfaction.

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    2. It could be a cry for attention, you know. The only time people seem to care is when she screws up.

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    3. Don't put it past her to figure out that she has to apologize for this one. You don't maintain a con operation for years without knowing when you have to kiss up.

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    4. A public hearing before the city council would give her a good opportunity to do that. We'll see if that is enough.

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  7. Katina Dunn created such a fine paper.
    I can't stand to see what Henderson has filled it with.

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    Replies
    1. My understanding is that Susan still owes Katina a lot of money from the court settlement.

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    2. Over $40,000. The Dunns will never see that money.

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  8. Wasn't there another incident of this negligence, sometime back before the one in July? Just how many times has Henderson done this?
    And while we're on the subject, has she ever verified her publication numbers? Yeah, no.

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    Replies
    1. Yes. July is mentioned in the article with a cite.

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    2. 9:12, before July. I recall something from close to 2 years ago.

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  9. Shame on the Tattler? I know why the Tattler is making a thing out of another piece of news missing in the MVN's, because it upsets Mrs. Henderson, some of us were at a function in town when she got real serious at someone "in public of all places" about the Tattler. She was so intense that some of us just left the area, that was some time back but we wont forget that moment.

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    1. A lot of that is driven by jealousy. Hendo doesn't have nearly as much influence as she had in the past.

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    2. An empty can makes the most noise.

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    3. The Tattler has way more eyeballs than the MVN. And doesn't kill any trees.

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  10. If you think about it, by not acting on this problem the City Manager has given Susan Henderson the same power the Mayor has. Susan too gets to determine when agenda items are to appear before the City Council. It is a lot of power.

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  11. This is inexcusable

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  12. I say give the city advertising to the Sierra Madre Weekly. It is a much better paper.

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    Replies
    1. Adjudicated status is a legal thing, with certain requirements. The MVN has it, the Weekly doesn't. Too bad, too.

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    2. There has to be some accounting for incompetence. How can a city be legally chained to such a mess?

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    3. It requires adjudication and circulation in the community so it is time to post these announcements with the Star News when Henderson's "contract" is up.

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  13. I would suggest a petition signed by hundreds of Sierra Madre citizens to be delivered to the City Council demanding that the city change its adjudicated paper for notices based on stated reasons: what dates were missed, what important processes were delayed, what aspects of city governmental function were put in jeopardy. It would not have to be circulated for signatures. It could be an on line petition that residents could sign from home and send in or download, sign and mail in. Something needs to be done to by pass the H. S. C. P. Henderson incompetencies.

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    Replies
    1. I'll sign!
      Will you put it together?

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    2. I don't really know how. I sign many of them on-line and I have participated in the walk around ones in Sierra Madre over the years but we all know how time consuming and tedious that is. My post at 9:18 above is to spur someone on with the smarts to do it to get it started ASAP. Basta!

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  14. There are always so many errors in Henderson's paper, both factual and grammatical. Her article on the council meeting opens with the incorrect address of the Darling house. Write the city manager and the council and tell them enough is enough!

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    Replies
    1. Huh. I wonder whose address she used? I bet they'd be overjoyed to see that.

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    2. Mayor Zimmerman already tried:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIq1-gVnDGA

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  15. I don't think that public notice ad was in this week's paper, either.

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  16. Henderson appeared to respond and accuse the mayor of slander:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tlWWTNinjk

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    Replies
    1. And Fay Angue responded to Henderson:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_sajqyoix4

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    2. Neuroblast's youtube channel is a great source of history.

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  17. Maybe the city did not get it to the paper in time?

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    1. So you're saying it is the fault of city staff? Really?

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    2. Interesting perspective, but consider this. If you were the publisher of the city's most aware and up to the minute adjudicated newspaper, you'd be up on all the city hall happenings in town. And since advertising pays the bills, you'd be on the phone with city hall in a heartbeat if they were late with so vitally important, and profitable, a piece of advertising. Right? That is what a real newspaper does. But we don't have a real newspaper.

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  18. How many development applications will this impact?

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    Replies
    1. Hard to say, but this does become yet another unfortunate delay that we cannot afford.

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  19. Hey Sparky, I here your old home in my town is going to be mowed down, huh, damn shame, how ironic.

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    Replies
    1. You mean you read yesterday's article?

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    2. That's hear, not here. Grammar & spelling saves lives.

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  20. 8:05PM How literate you are! You can read but not spell.....

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