Thursday, February 16, 2017

Preserve Sierra Madre: City Council Approves Changes to Demolition Ordinance

Mod: The following e-mail from Preserve Sierra Madre went out to its membership yesterday. 

Dear Supporters: After a thoughtful and informed discussion, our City Council unanimously approved the changes to the Demolition Ordinance recommended by our Planning Commission. By law, it will only go into effect after a "second reading", but it's gratifying to have our City Council working with our Planning Commission and City Staff to advance the cause of preservation in Sierra Madre.

The City Council had only one minor change to the ordinance that was reasonable and appropriate. Because of the importance of these improvements to the Demolition Ordinance, Planning Commissioners Frierman-Hunt and Hutt were on hand to explain the changes and to take questions from City Council Members. We appreciate that they took the time to do that.

We are also encouraged that the City Council and Planning Commission are going to take up the issue of having a city-wide Historical Survey to determine which houses may have historical significance. This is something that almost every city that takes historical preservation seriously has done, and Preserve Sierra Madre would support such a survey wholeheartedly. It would have many beneficial effects including among other things:

1. Removing the guess work by letting owners, buyers and developers know in advance whether a property has historical significance.

2. Reducing the burden on owners because of ordinances that now apply to all homes that are 75 years or older but yet may have no historical or architectural significance regardless.

3. Reducing costly litigation because buyers and developers are on notice that when they buy a property on the list, they will face additional scrutiny if they want to make changes to the outside facade.

Thank you for your continued support, your emails and your interest in preservation. As we start a new year, we are also looking for people interested in serving on our Steering Committee or who would like to assist us with maintaining our websites and social media platforms.

We currently have two websites one of which is active: www.PreserveSierraMadre.com and one of which is dormant but ready to be revived if necessary: www.StopMonasteryHousingProject.com. Email us if you wish to help in any capacity. While we have an exceptional City Council, Planning Commission and supportive City Staff, there is always work to be done.

Pasadena Star News article on the Henry A. Darling house

Mod: I believe this article is in today's issue of the local daily newspaper of record. Note again the unfortunate use of the word "vitriolic" to describe Sierra Madre's Planning Commission. This is now the second time such language has been used publicly by Kefalas's attorney. Apparently such attacks on the Planning Commission have become an important part of their legal strategy.

Historic house in Sierra Madre gutted for renovation, unleashing a new controversy (Pasadena Star News link)


Mod: The rest of this PSN article can be accessed at the link provided above.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

61 comments:

  1. Quite interesting that the hired attorney, the "new" homeowners, the Preserve Sierra Madre group, the New City Planning Director; none of them have been on the same page, so to speak.
    The Planning Commissioners, some, not all were" vitriolic" when questioning the homeowner. The appearance of watching the meeting, was that no one, absolutely no one had a clue. Except, that now a house was stripped to the rafters; which in accordance of the issued CPU and permit, was acceptable; with the smallest of a percentage of removal of roofing materials, the descent into an uproar began.
    The Preserve Sierra Madre group, should have the Planning Department (just in case of future litigation), explain reference point two for clarity.
    Just because a house may be on that list and "yet may have no historical ... regardless " IS NOT THE SAME as being on a State Registry.
    The repair of the outside of a home is always treated with scrutiny by the Planning Commission, unless the owners have not applied for permits.
    The Historical record keeping will give a house some background and reference point when comming before the Commission, especially those homes, where no permit was obtained.
    There are no ordinances that direct a homeowner as to the interiors of a house; that is common sense.
    "A man's home is his castle", how you decorate or preserve the interior is "your" own business and sense of taste, or lack thereof.

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    1. The historic resource report was paid for by Kefalas. Was he ripped off?

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    2. Hey, you're the trump guy!

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  2. It would appear that Attorney Carlson is attempting to portray Mr. Kefalas as a victim. I guess we'll need to see how that plays.

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  3. Just put it back the way it was. Heard a bunch of neighbors signed a letter to get it rebuilt ASAP.

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    1. Nosey neighbors

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    2. Funny how that city published all the letters from preserve Sierra Madre, but not the neighbors letters. Didn't fit the narrative I guess...

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    3. I don't think these neighbors are overly pleased with Special K right now. They just want the damage fixed.

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    4. I guess we will never know without reading the letters...
      my guess is the opposite is true, which is why we haven't seen them.

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    5. Why do you constantly feel the need to call him names?

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    6. 9:32- I don't know why people do that. Projecting emotion in such a cheap way weakens one's argument; even when it's a winning argument. People just tune out.

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    7. Most people are not robots. It is also possible to express disrespect on a blog.

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    8. A bunch of neighbors?
      Or the one who has shown up at meetings, who is said to be related to the Kefalas family?

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    9. Most of the signatures were not neighbors. I have copies.

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    10. Why don't you?

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    11. It's a public record. Go look for yourself. Do your own legwork for a change.

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    12. You want me to prove the letters you have are what you say they are?

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  4. We all pay a lot of taxes to this city, and expect that in exchange it will protect us by enforcing its laws, codes and ordinances. If the city govt does not do this, what is it we are paying for?

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    1. My bet is Carlson hopes the city is willing to work out a compromise to avoid going to court. This is all a bluff.

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    2. Water bond debt.

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    3. Based on the unanimity shown by the city council on the demolition ordinance Tuesday evening, the city will fight.

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  5. Kefalas set the tone for each interaction with the commissioners. He was disrespectful, scornful and wouldn't listen.

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    1. I'm not sure what meeting you were watching, but that's not what I saw. I recall the word "Liar" got thrown out. "Not trustworthy" was another. So who was being disrespectful again? Obviously everyone will view things based on their own biases, but this is a great microcosm of what is going on in our world. Make up your mind based on your biases, don't listen to anyone else's point of view, and stick to your guns...

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    2. Sometimes passions run high. Particularly when issues like this are being discussed. How much better things would be now if Mr. Kefalas had simply followed the law.

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    3. I don't see how he didn't. City staff wanted him to change the roofing plan to meet code and the director signed off on it. If they only wanted to change one section, they should have "bubbled" the area like most professionals do, not written a vague directive. For something so seemingly important to them, they really made no effort to be clear. I don't see how you blame Kefalas in this instance.

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    4. So was this signed off on, or only give a "vague directive?" You are going in two directions at once.

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    5. The directive was written on the plan vaguely which was signed by the director.

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  6. City Council members may not interact with the public, the way the Planning Commision interacted with Mr. Kefalas.
    At this point, not sure of any codes of conduct.
    Now that the City has addresses these "loop holes"in this area of Demolition; maybe the Commissioners and homeowners can "work" out the safty issues of the re build.

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    Replies
    1. just like private citizens may not conduct diplomacy with foreign countries. Like Russia.

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  7. I wonder if the residents of Sierra Madre are aware that if they have a home built before 1947, they now have to pay $5k for a historical survey before they replace their windows or add on to their homes. This is a gross over reach of the hand of government.

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    1. Most people in town do not want to see this city go the way of Arcadia.

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    2. ....so throw out the baby with the bath water?

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    3. No. Just keep the city as it is.

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    4. I wasn't aware. Can you provide a link ?

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    5. http://cityofsierramadre.hosted.civiclive.com/common/pages/DisplayFile.aspx?itemId=6559228

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    6. If you have a home built before 1947 why would you want to substantively modify it. Just buy a different home, we don't need the history of our city destroyed so that some cheap bad restaurant owner can flip a Mcmansion for profit down the line. There should be regulations in this city.

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

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  9. Trump caught lying again- this time about claiming to have graduated at the top of his class at Wharton:


    The program does list, “20 Wharton award and prize recipients, 15 cum laude recipients, four magna cum laude recipients and two summa cum laude recipients for the Class of 1968. Trump’s name appears nowhere on those lists.”

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    1. Must be the media's fault.

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  10. The Press is dishonest, not all of them, but many of them.
    I agree.
    I like the platform of taking the messages straight to the people, hearing from the President directly.
    The President is speaking openly to the people and saying that he has inherited "a mess". This is why he received an overwhelming number of Electrol votes, 306 votes to be exact, the most since Ronald Regan. Which is how a President is selected in this Country, from Electrol voting.The President is at a 55% support from the American public. To date, he has accomplished more in these few weeks than any other Elected Official in office, all this without a full cabinet. Thank you President Trump. History will portray that you were the right person at the right time for this Country.

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    1. we need to see the truth beyond propaganda sites like breitbart and Fox News which are extensions of right wing oligarchs.

      Trump's tweets his twitter fans are not news. The amplification of his falsehoods Does not create facts.

      See the John Oliver link at the bottom of yesterday's blog for a true understanding of what is going on here.

      Trump guy, please, really, you should watch it too.

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    2. Like a loyal stenographer, Trump guy just recites Trump's lies. And just as non-college white supporters are too lazy to get an education or retrain for our modern economy, Trump guy is too lazy to do the simplest fact checking.

      Claim:

      Trump electoral votes: "306 votes to be exact, the most since Ronald Reagan."

      Facts:

      2012 Obama 332
      2008 Obama 365
      1996 Clinton 379
      1992 Clinton 370
      1988 H.W. 426

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    3. Trump is a Trump Troll.

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  11. 9:24am. Finally a voice in the wilderness. You understand what has transpired. Thank you.

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  12. MORE FAKE NEWS, from the trump troll who just admitted that he only gets his news directly from trump:

    Trump falsely claims that his electoral college victory this past November was the biggest since Ronald Reagan’s.With 306 electoral college votes, Trump’s margin of victory last year was smaller than not only Ronald Reagan’s, but also George H.W. Bush’s victory in 1988, Bill Clinton’s two victories in 1992 and 1996, and Barack Obama’s two wins in 2008 and 2012.When confronted by this, Trump simply replied that he “was given that information,” without acknowledging that the information was false.

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  13. I suppose that Hillary Clinton ment to say "Oscar de Latrena was a immigrant" that never used any illegal lowest paid foreign workers outside of the U.S., when creating his clothing lines.

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    1. You can't distract your way out of this. Your fake arguments about 'draining the swamp' and Trump being free of corruption are proven false here daily.

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  14. POTATO - PATAATOE
    TOMATO - TOMAATO

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  15. 3:08pm. How about the "white uneducated lazy retrain"? Because we're all out working hard, sometimes two or theree jobs ( Obamanomics, made "us" do it ya know) to support your Mindless, Welfare, butt.

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    1. Trump troll: stop posting false facts here.

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    2. Trump troll is a boring fool.

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    3. 3:08 here. 3:46 should thank Obama that he has a job after W and his cronies cratered the economy.

      Non-college white males may want to keep manufacturing buggy whips, but those days are gone.

      Not everyone needs a college education, but everyone needs a skill appropriate to the times in which we exist. Go get one.

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  17. You Sierra Madreians got your preservation act together!! If that Darling house were in Arcadia, ol Roger Chandler himself would have driven the demo bulldozer thru it. Be glad you have residents who care and not the hideous mansions like arcadia is swimming in.

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  18. 10:15 - are you Trump's speechwriter? All your "facts" came out of his so called speech.

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  19. Just watching CNN, and the so called news conference. A black reporter asked when he was going to meet with the black caucus. He told her she should set it up, because Chuck Shumer told them not to talk to him.

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