Thursday, January 29, 2009

A Great Night For The People Of Sierra Madre

"When morality comes up against profit, it is seldom that profit loses." - Shirley Chisholm

So what could possibly be wrong here? After years of being promised an empowered Canyon Zoning Committee by less forthcoming earlier incarnations of the Sierra Madre City Council, and after years of hearing how The Canyon might actually even get a Zoning Law (something that also never quite seemed to happen), all of these things actually came to a happy conclusion Tuesday evening. And the people picked to run it? Residents with over 30 years here in town, people who combine unique professional qualifications and a strong dedication to the place they've called home for much of their adult lives. Democracy in action, right? People calling the shots on the affairs of their own neighborhood despite the wishes of those whose outside agendas might not be in line with what the people living there want.

Isn't this pretty much the American civic dream we all learned about in Social Studies class? Citizens taking real responsibility for their community affairs and circumstances? Who could possibly have a problem with that?

Well, apparently John Buchanan and Joe Mosca for two. You see, it would appear that the strongly preservationist bent of the 5 people chosen by the City Council majority to run the Canyon Zoning Committee didn't make them feel exactly comfortable. And if your loyalties are with the folks who would want to build generic lot to lot McMansions in this unique and beautiful place rather than adhering to the wishes of those actually living there, you'd probably have thought you were having a pretty bad night as well. And it definitely was an unfortunate evening for privileged remote control governance and those who seek economic advantage through the imposing of bad faith on good people.

And it was great TV as well. I mean, what could possibly be more entertaining than watching those two squirm? The attempt to portray oneself as caring deeply about something while engaging in actions that are 180 degrees to the south of your performance is never easy, and I am happy to report that John and Joe both failed miserably in that difficult role.

One more item from Tuesday evening. Once again a comedic interlude was provided by the Mountain Views "Observer." Although this time it didn't involve the paper's publisher running around the room loudly threatening to sue any City Council member daring to say things she'd prefer nobody ever hear. No, this week it was about legal advertising that the City paid to see in the MVO, but for some reason didn't make it to print within the promised time. Because of this lapse a discussion on the important matter of solar panels had to be shelved for another meeting.

Dorothy put it best. There is no place like home.


  1. John Buchanan and Joe Mosca pushed hard for pro-development friend, Glenn Lambdin.
    The same Glenn Lambdin who sues his Sierra Madre neighbors, with a harassment suit over wording on the ballot of Measure V.He was part of the NO on V campaign against over development of downtown. Measure V got a good percentage of their YES votes from Sierra Madre Canyon.
    The people who reside in the canyon voted overwelmingly for MaryAnn MacGillivray for city council.
    MacGillivray sent personally letters to the canyon residents, promising them a CANYON ZONING LAW. She is keeping her promise. What a concept, an elected official who keeps their promise! We have two more on the council who also kept their promise to the people, often at great personal sacrifice.
    Mayor Kurt Zimmerman and Councilmember Don Watts. Zimmerman, Watts and MOSCA all promised to allow a vote on the DSP.......Mosca quickly did a flip flop and voted against the people having the right to vote. Forcing ZIMMERMAN and WATTS (at their own expense for the most part)to help the people vote, after citizens got nearly 2,000 signatures to put Measure V on the ballot. The people WON, YES on V passed, despite the efforts of Glenn Lambdin, Bart Doyle, Joe Mosca, Enid Joffe, Rob Stockley and the rest of the "dirts".
    MOSCA betrayed the folks who voted for him, lied to them. Mosca continues to push his pro-development agenda on our city council. John Buchanan has never kept his campaign promises concerning development.
    Sierra Madre is fortunate to have 3 councilmembers, Zimmerman, Watts and MacGillivray to are working very hard in difficult times to keep Sierra Madre financially sound. They are succeeding. We have a grand chance of getting the former SNF
    transformed into something the community will be very pleased to have.
    Our economy will improve, and Sierra Madre will move forward, still maintaining our beautiful small town.
    Mayor Zimmerman, Councilman Watts, and Mayor Pro-tem MaryAnn........A BIG HUG AND THANK YOU FROM THE RESIDENTS OF THE CANYON!!!!!!!!!!

  2. If Glenn wanted Canyon Zoning why didn't he make sure it was completed while he was on the City Council? Since it was not done under his watch, I assume he did not want it then nor does he really want it now.

  3. Good point. And he could have had the old church at 186 W. Highland designated as a historical whatever when he was Mayor as well. But he didn't.

  4. I was waiting for Joe to ask for a break because he was so distraught.

  5. Wow,
    Pasta and Also Anonymous.......
    You're right!
    Although, I don't think Glenn would have been a proper selection due to the fact he does construction work up there. Conflict of interest? Others are qualified in building issues, but without financial gain to themselves.
    I do know that at least three of the people who were selected have remodeled their own homes......did it themselves. They know about building.
    Caroline Brown, Marie Graham and Sherry Robison.
    Caroline needs no introduction, everyone knows what she does for this community. Fire Safety Council, Mountain Conservancy, etc.
    Marie Graham is well known by many, as former owner and operator of the old Texico station in town. Marie is currently in law enforcemnt with the L.A.P.D. and Civil Defense. Marie has lived here in the canyon all her life.
    Sherry Robison is a Hospice RN, she has been a case manager and a staff developer in Arcadia and at the former SNF in Sierra Madre.
    These women have lived in the canyon between 30 and 40 years each.
    The two gentlemen selected for the committee are John Herrmann, community activist, historian and Jim Monachino, also a community activist and financial expert.
    The canyon will FINALLY get proper a proper zoning code.

  6. Congratulations to everyone in the canyon! Caroline, Marie, John, Jim and Sherry will protect you from the overdevilopment that has ruined so many other places. Let's all be grateful to them, and to the council members who brought this about - Zimmerman, MacGillivray and Watts.
    And just by the way, canyonites - watch your backs. Any lots that are in play, or will be soon, are potential problems. The devilopers will do their best to get away with whatever they can before any new codes are in place.

  7. Be sure to pick up your copy of The Sierra Madre Weekly today. Got my copy downtown this morning. And there are 2 Tattler articles in this week's issue! And Pasta's comment on the 710 Tunnel is quoted as well.

    We're breaking through ...

  8. Hey, somebody better tell the canyon committee to request a moratorium. Or it might be too late already. Anyone know how busy Development Services was yesterday, accepting & dating applications??

  9. Congrats, Sir Eric,
    our researchers need to get busy on Sierra Business Owner's good question.
    Let's watch those applications, friends.
    The name Glenn Lambdin makes my blood boil!
    Remember, he USED Bart Doyle's Building Industry Assoc. LAWYERS to SUE, Kurt Zimmerman, Kevin Dunn,et all on the wording of Measure V on the ballot......then had the b***s to go on the vile downtowndirt website and claim he used his own money.
    Then posted he WON the case. Kinda reminds us of Harriet Susan Henderson rushing down to Kiwanis and claiming she won the case Katina Dunn actually DID WIN against her.
    Harriet and Glenn are two peas in a pod.
    By the way, Lambdin, if you're reading this, we have printouts of your posts to downtown dirt.

  10. Yes, a moratorium will help. This is the third round of effort to draft a canyon zone. The problem is that every previous committee has made some inroad and recognized the problems with lot size, natural environment, etc. and the City has stopped at that point. Even Glenn can't control what happens after they've drafted the ordinances. The point is that this cool committee has a place to start. Helpfully, Caroline attended many of the meetings of the last committee and knows what happened. Now if we can avoid starting from scratch and act while we have a supportive Council majority, the Canyon Ordinance that was part of the general plan could actually get passed.

  11. Damn. Now we're cooking with gas. So much is happening all of a sudden. Who'd have that that things would someday get this good? As anyone who lived through the bad old days can tell you, its just so much better now!

  12. Ah, such a beautiful little town. Who would want to mess it up? Also, property values INCREASE for places with so much natural beauty. I believe these sticks-in-spokes people have created some havoc. Why was it such a battle to fight them? There is stubbornness, revenge, a need to be right. The sticks-in-spokes people were also serving an agenda other than the city's. And, my guess is, there was big money involved.

  13. Yes, anonymous @12:32, probably big money. But what is it people think they are going to buy that makes pillaging worth it? A clean conscience?

  14. Perhaps a well-feathered nest, since quite a few political careers have been dashed at the end of this all. Or maybe city council seats were a means to an end, with no political future planned. Hard to elect people with massive gaps in credibility. I thought it was quite funny at the city council meeting with council member John Buchanan crowing about the book of the month - Farenheit 451 - about censorship - and he introduced Jim Snider and the Cumquat to quash and intimidate free speech. Remember, he only apologized for it just before the election - too late! That site raged for months despite public pleadings by one of our most senior and brilliant citizens to stop it. Buchanan is the height of hypocrisy. He got re-elected because there was no free press at the time. Thank you, Sir Eric, for coming forth.

  15. Remember everyone....Sir Eric's Tattler is now featured in The Sierra Madre Weekly, you'll find at most news racks around town. Please pick up copies for friends. Spread the word and patronize their sponsers....yes, even the realtors!
    Anonymous at 1:04 pm........great post!

  16. SMFD new hours to be posted June 1 Mon-Fri 12A-12p You heard it here first. BN


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