Monday, August 17, 2015

Arcadia Residents Will Put An Initiative On The Ballot Designed To Kill Off Mansionization

(How much is that in GemCoin?)
Late last week I, along with a bunch of other local newsie types, received an e-mail announcing some pretty immense news in the ongoing fight against the McMansionization of Arcadia. Add in the ongoing effort to recall 3 especially compromised City Councilmembers, and things have obviously gotten exciting there.

Many Arcadia residents, sick of the dishonesty and widely suspected corruption at City Hall, have now decided it is necessary to take matters into their own hands and, through the use of a ballot initiative, beat down runaway mansionization.

In a city whose government apparently only cares about how much they can take in property taxes and development impact fees, along with such phony nonsense as the Arcadia Association of Realtor's so-called "private property rights campaign" (AAR rule of thumb: the bigger the house, the greater the rights - link), there really isn't any other recourse available.

Here is how that e-mail reads:

Yesterday, a Notice of Intent to Circulate a Petition for the attached Ballot Initiative was filed with the City Clerk. This was a collaborative effort of representatives from the Highlands, Village, Oaks, Lower Rancho and South Arcadia.

In response to the City Council’s 3-2 vote to suspend residential zoning code updates, this committee formed and drafted this initiative.  New single family homes in Arcadia are being submitted at an alarming rate.  165 new homes were submitted in 2014 in Arcadia as opposed to approximately 70 in Temple City, 20 in Monrovia and 15 in San Marino.  

Many of the new homes in Arcadia are out of scale and proportion to the neighborhoods.  Arcadia’s codes have no limit on the amount of square footage that can be built on a lot.  This ballot initiative sets limits in line with neighboring, quality cities.  These limits will help protect views and privacy and preserve property values.

The signers of the notice of intent are April A. Verlato, ARB Chair of the Arcadia Highlands Homeowner’s Association, Laurie Thompson, ARB Chair of the Santa Anita Village Homeowner’s Association, and Richard Midgley, President of the Santa Anita Oaks Homeowner’s Association.

The Pasadena Star News has been covering the Arcadia beat pretty closely, and they published the following account last Friday.


Nice to see Sierra Madre's success in defeating mansionization acknowledged. The rest of this Pasadena Star News report can be read by clicking here.

Pretty exciting times in Birdtown. Here is how the "notice of intent" sent to Arcadia's City Clerk reads.


All very good news.

After years of having to listen to some of the most inane kinds of crap imaginable (link), it is great to see that the people of Arcadia have finally had their fill and are fighting back.

Not that they had much of a choice.

sierramadretattler.com

41 comments:

  1. "John Wuo: Heart & Family in Arcadia."
    Backed by amber mine.

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    Replies
    1. It just may turn out that John Wuo inadvertently brings down the death by mansionization spiral that Arcadia is suffering from.

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    2. He has made the McMansion crowd look like fools.

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  2. How come everything bad in Arcadia has Chip Ahlswede's greasy fingerprints all over it?

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    Replies
    1. Who the hell names their kid Chip?

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    2. John Mister Mayor WuoAugust 17, 2015 at 7:07 AM

      I know nothing, nothing!!

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    3. 7:06 - Mr. and Mrs. Buffalo.

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    4. Straight outa First Avenue.

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    5. Q) Why is John Wuo's head like an amber stone?
      A) It is very hard and has bugs in it.

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  3. Hoorah, hooray, for Arcadia. She does care about her preservation. Now, about the trees and water, lets work together.

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  4. This is going to get wild. Arcadia is about to do their Measure V. Buy a helmet.

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  5. Arcadia could sure use Sierra Madre's Attorney and support advisers for Measure V. I won't mention any famous names.

    Good luck Neighbor.

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    Replies
    1. The people brought in by the big money developers to oppose this initiative will play dirty. Do not be shocked by the outrageousness of their lies.

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    2. I will mention names. He's famous for fighting for slow growth initiatives - Chris Sutton, Pasadena.

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    3. He beat the No On Measure V crowd like a tom tom.

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    4. Chris is a good guy, but it was a bunch of plain ol' residents with many small donations that did the footwork. Also do t forget Kevin and Katina Dunn, Kurt Zimmerman, and Don Watts.

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    5. There are always people who stand up when they are most needed.

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  6. AAR of course gets its stategies from the CAR handbook, in use since 2000:
    Strategies for Fighting the Slow Growth Movement at the Local Level
    http://www.car.org/media/pdf/103309/

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    Replies
    1. The California Association Of Realtors Channels Saul Alinsky
      http://sierramadretattler.blogspot.com/2009/05/california-association-of-realtors.html

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    2. Speaking of CAR and its Stormtroopers of Development, I hear the Chipster is making telephone calls today. Maybe he thinks people don't know about him? How wrong of him to think that!

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    3. Ahlswede is having trouble finding lunch dates.

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    4. I hear he has alligator arms. He never seems to be able to reach his wallet.

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    5. He's desperate. Time has passed Chip by, and he is trying to live up to what he thinks is his reputation.

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  7. Do people in Arcadia read this blog? They should. I would like to hear from more of them. All of us need to work together.

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    Replies
    1. They may read it and not comment. I know that I did that for some years - just read the articles.

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    2. Traffic goes way up on Arcadia posts. They just aren't ready to chat yet I guess. Some of us have been at this for a decade, or more. Takes time.

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  8. Arcadians sat on their hands when the glorious site of Lucky Baldwin's daughter, Anita Baldwin's home went under the wrecking ball and the first track of mega mansions went up at the corner of Baldwin and Foothill Blvd. A very few folks showed up to point out the disater. Arcadia has had such a hard time to focus historical preservation interest that it has taken this long and this level of corruption to get their attention. There is always a tipping point.

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    Replies
    1. What went up there is a nightmare of gated community McMannies. And guess who was the architect?

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    2. Upper Rancho is almost total McMansions, now. Let's hope they get the restrictions through in time to save the heritage of other portions of Arcadia.

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    3. How sad that we are the only lcommunity ignorning the citizens time after time. Our city council sits there month after month with straight faces. We need a forensic accountant to follow the money trail.

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  9. It's finally in their backyards. When it was happening south of Huntington, you didn't hear a peep from the Oaks etc.
    The neighborhood you save may be your own.

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  10. While driving around Upper Rancho a few days ago, I counted four out of four parcels under development by Mur-Sol construction. Coincidentally, the very same developer who built a vast majority of the McMansions in South Arcadia. How? You'd expect many developers would want to build and walk away with the easy cash. Who's palms got greased? What's most disgusting is the family was raised in Arcadia. Sellouts? You judge.

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  11. I think the real number is closer to 12!, not 4

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  12. Sierra madre city hall has called a special meeting a week from today a 6 pm to Raise the UUT taxes ! Just think, it took 15 years to finally reduce thoses taxes. City hall has illegally misappropriated the money for years! All UUT tax monies were only to be spent on subtimental salaries for police and fire, not general fund expenditures. City council members need to be held accountable!

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  13. Lael Livengood BlockerAugust 18, 2015 at 8:55 AM

    Yes, we in Arcadia are reading this! I am still a bit shocked at your moxie, but so appreciate your take on our current woes!

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  14. Better late than never.
    Time to get the three looser losers out and send them a message.
    To not let the door hit em on the butt on the way out...

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  15. So now we get an initiative drafted by a few that think they speak for us all. Where was the public venue to discuss this initiative? Your doing exactly what your accusing the city council is doing wrong.

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    Replies
    1. Then vote no, ya dummy. Something about people putting initiatives on the ballot that you cannot understand? Democracy a head trip for you or something?

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    2. School starts next week in Arcadia so you can again learn (hopefully) how to grow up. Ask your parents too.

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