Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A Novel Plan To Deal With Abandoned Properties

For quite a while now this City has discussed the rather sad condition of the Skilled Nursing Facility. And as unpleasant as this blighted property has been for this town, you really do need to step back and ask yourself a question. What if instead of being the exception, it was the rule? What if instead of one blighted property, half of the buildings in downtown Sierra Madre were in that condition? With a significant portion of the residential properties as well? Because there are places that are like that, and some of them aren't really all that far away.

Of course, with the SNF all we need to do is wait for another 60 or so days when our Blight Ordinance kicks in and the responsible party (the property's owner) begins to realize that there are consequences to allowing so visible a commercial property to sit and rot. And even he must be realizing that hell will freeze over before this City will ever again elect a government that will cut him that measure of slack. The Shenanigan Era is over, and with it the freedom to turn investment properties into eyesores.

But not every place is as fortunate as the one we live in. The solutions to their problems are nowhere near as simple. And the website Mint Life nicely details some of the worst casualties of the real estate market collapse. In an article there entitled Modern Day Ghost Towns of Abandoned Real Estate, some of the worst cases are described. I've picked out a few of the more regional ones.

Riverside County, California - It is ... important to note that this area was a known hub for building up Southern California's rapid suburban sprawl - not only was this one of the state's regions with the most expansion, but it was also an area that furnished many of the construction companies with cheap labor that made surrounding communities' growth possible. By August of 2008, the median price of a home in Riverside County dropped to $220k, the first time it had dipped under $300k since the 1990s. In some Riverside County neighborhoods, as many as 20% of all homes have been foreclosed and now sit vacant.

Stockton, California - Currently, 90% of all sales in the greater Stockton region are either foreclosures or short sales. The median house price dropped to $237k by December '08, the lowest it has been since February 2003. It is estimated that housing prices in former boom markets are more than 40% off what they had been leading up to 2007.

Las Vegas - Just over a year ago, the Greater Las Vegas Board of Realtors calculated that 45% of the 22,000 single family houses for sale at the time were actually vacant. Most of all these were houses abandoned by new area residents, or investment properties by the area's thousands of speculators who were drawn to the region because of its recent track record of housing price increases. Squatters are increasingly seen occupying the abandoned properties.

North Los Angeles County, California - With the vision of urban sprawl connecting Los Angeles to Bakersfield and the plans for a train connecting the two, builders began winding through the hills to the north from LA. Today, in Antelope Valley, for example, it is not unusual for long-term rental property owners to have to deal with tenants who recently lost their home to foreclosure and are having difficulty getting back on their feet. In some cases, tenants do everything from the typical stripping of copper wire to be sold to the more bizarre use of cabinets for firewood. Abandoned investment properties are on the rise.

So all that said, where is that novel plan to deal with abandoned properties you ask? Well, for that we will need to turn to the BBC News website to get the lowdown.

Fake shops 'revive' high street - With 140 empty shops in the borough, council bosses think they have come up with a unique way of ensuring shopping areas remain as vibrant as ever. The first empty shop unit to be given a makeover with a "flat pack" shop front is in Whitley Bay. North Tyneside Council said the move was cost-effective and would help to attract new investment. The council said the fake shop in Whitley bay - which alone has 49 empty units - has been welcomed by traders and shoppers.

The government-funded project involves colorful graphic designs featuring a range of different shop types, which are either taped inside the windows or screwed to the fascia so they can be removed and reused as required. Karen Goldfinch, chair of Whitley Bay Chamber of Trade, said: "It's an excellent way of promoting how a unit can be used, perhaps inspiring new businesses to come into town."

A very interesting solution. Rather than just allowing shops to sit empty and forlorn in the middle of a shopping area, these folks have begun taping colorful pictures of bustling business up on the empty store front windows in order to at least give the impression that prosperity is being practiced there.

Somebody has got to get this outfit's phone number over to whoever it is that owns the Skilled Nursing Facility. Faced with substantial fines in around 60 days, perhaps the owner'd be interested in purchasing a full set of window pictures to paste on the boards up where the real ones used to be. Personally I'd suggest he get the ones with the pictures of flowerpots included.

Of course, the best solution would be for the LLC owning the SNF to just sell the property and let market values determine which businesses will and will not be able to set up shop there. The artificially high price these people have been asking for the place these last few years has pretty much discouraged any serious interest in the place. You can only wonder what it is they think they're holding out for. Hopefully the blight fines will help motivate them.

Bonus Coverage: Is this the first time the Pasadena Star News has made its Sierra Madre candidate endorsements without actually speaking to all the candidates? That the PSN's editorial posse would actually choose those candidates favored by the decidedly big development forward San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership (AT&T, Majestic Realty, Edison, The Gas Company - aka Joe Mosca's employer) should be no surprise given they are employed by one of that organization's chief sponsors. And just like all of their favored "slow growth" candidates, the Star News was against Measure V as well. Just the way it goes. But to not even make a phone call with a question or two? Just for appearances sake? Seems both elite and rather remote of them.

Bonus Coverage Two: Spoke with Frank Girardot at the Pasadena Star News and he confirmed that they had not spoken to the candidates before making their call on the Sierra Madre election this April 13. The reason being they didn't want to "take up any of the candidates' valuable time."


  1. Big fan of Heather AllenMarch 23, 2010 at 6:48 AM

    It's as we suspected! A coven of DIRTS held a coffee over the weekend at the home of a supporter of Beth Buck and her Downtown Dirts for one of their candidates and who should be an invited speaker - to explain how Measure V was behind the boarded up storefronts and the loss of income to downtown businesses but the puppet master himself, Bart Doyle! Shades of the LLC's and their "coffees" to sell shares in Montecito Development. Anyway, this particular coffee was also attended by Sierra Madre's own version of Joan of Arc, Ms. Heather Allen, who confronted Bart with the true facts of Measure V and not his BIA/CRA-laced crazy town version for half-wits, matched his rhetoric point by point and uttered her now famous clincher, "You are a liar". I have it on reliable authority that Ms. Allen isn't a regular Tattler reader but for those of you who are, seek her out and give her huge props! Heather Allen is an authentic Sierra Madre heroine.

  2. In the Beth Buchanan-Doyle alternative universe everyone is responsible for the lamentable state of the Skilled Nursing Facility except the owner. That set of individuals being, of course, victims.

  3. Coming to tonight's City Council meeting? As the run up to the March 13th election shifts into high gear you can expect much entertainment. See Joe Mosca turn on the spit, watch Ms. Walsh's now famous windmill impersonation, and listen to Josh Moran once again campaign for his family to be elected to Council. If you can't make it to Council Chambers be sure and tune in. Have the popcorn ready about 6:30 pm and invite a few neighbors. After all, it's our town, our government, and we dang well better pay attention!

  4. You've of course heard about candidates who have gotten elected riding on the coattails of a stronger candidate. But have you ever heard of one running for office by tying himself to his mother's apron strings? Can it be what we have here isn't a Manchurian candidate, but rather an Oedipal one?

  5. Is there anyone who doesn't understand that the owners of the SNF purposely boarded up the windows, shut off the water, and left the entire site to deteriorate just to give the finger to Sierra Madre? Someone, perhaps the attorney(s) advising them on the DSP, said the City's position will change in the next election -- make it ugly and they'll give you what you want. Never counting on the residents standing up to the reign of realtors' and developers' terror. We've all lost friends in this battle. Do I want to be reconciled with people willing to sell their neighbors' and children's interests for a quick buck? Not by a long shot.

    Vote Alcorn, Crawford and Watts! They have our best interests in their hearts.


    Larry Wilson - taking a break from his career as a professional name dropper and sayer of nothing - has just endorsed the "establishment" candidates. What a shock!

    In doing so he displayed a grip on the facts far weaker than his grip on the names in the social register.

    Larry Boy, did you know there was a DSP calling for hundreds of new condos? Did you know Joe Mosca voted to pursue the DSP in the face of campaign promises to kill it?

    Larry Boy, Did you know that Joe Mosca was so engaged in local bodies like SCAG that he did not bother to attend meetings?

    Did you know it was the unwashed mayor and Don Watts who actually engaged SCAG to reduce our population and employment projections, which will reduce the housing allotment and the pressure to develop downtown and the hillsides?

    Finally Larry Boy, did you know we would not have had Measure V or years of discord had Joe Mosca simply honored his word and put the DSP up for a vote. In fact, it is Joe Mosca (a newcomer to town, which in old money Larry Land is a negative) who has caused the discord.

    No Larry, you didn't know this. Which is why you, from the comfort of your family salon in Oldest Pasadena, can write a Sierra Madre endorsement without mentioning the DSP or Measure V. Please, for the sake of us all. Go back to being a hanger on and dropping names. It is what you are made for.

    As for me, I endorse whole heartedly my neighbors and friends Don Watts, Pat Alcorn and John Crawford. They will return the town to its values:


    Your neighbor, Right Wing Rick.

  7. What a great post RWR!

    Heather Allen? If you are reading this, you just moved way up in CLASS in Old Kentucky's handicap.

  8. Well, that should pretty much do in the Moscateers. Anyone
    the Passively Startled News endorses ends up on the losing

  9. Great article today! Ghost towns abound all over the southland and imagine trying to live in a house that you bought in a barely finished, but overly promised, development. Lonely. What a bitter commute from Adelanto or Yucca Valley!
    Great post by RWR, too.

  10. Watts, Crawford, and Alcorn really dodged the Star News kiss of death endorcement. Anyone the Star New endorces bites the dust. Just ask Enid and Tonja.

  11. Heather...you are my hero.

  12. One of the wackiest of all the fibs in the Star "News" endorsement
    is that those not supporting the Moscateers are new in town. Can
    you think of anything more ridiculous than that? Newer than who,
    Joe Mosca? Not quite sure that is possible.

  13. Isn't neat that Josh Moran showed up in town, just in time to file to run, so we can all join hands and sing Cumbaya for a more Utopian Sierra Madre?
    Can't we all just get along!

  14. If there was ever a time to cancel a subscription, this has to be it..Enough with inertia!

  15. Ironic that I just received a special offer on a Star News subscription in the mail. Into the trash that one goes.

  16. This election is about attempting to reverse Measure V,
    and returning to the DSP of high density buildings.
    The SNF has sat unleased, and unsold because of the LLC of ex-City Council people wanting their money out of it.

  17. The Star-News is also a Leadership Package sponsor for the San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership, along with local water and sanitation districts and the developers.

    That's also why the "paper water" is never a problem and we don't hear about what's going on with our resources and their allocation.


  18. It's about time someone called out Barton Fink Doyle for his transgressions against the residents of Sierra Madre - too bad that incident isn't on videotape. Heather doesn't have anything to lose, so she can go on attack (but watch out, for those who are at all vulnerable, because the dirts will sic the dogs on you if they can - freedom of speech is not one of the constitutional guarantees that this group treasures, though it claims to be an all-American, patriotic organization...). Maybe Heather should apply for a job as reporter at PSN - and ask for the assignment of covering Sierra Madre. Certainly we'd get fairer coverage and the PSN might actually get some subscription renewals.

    That said, anyone supporting Joe Mosca must either have a screw loose or must support his agenda of bringing overdevelopment into this town. I would think that many of the Democrats in town would either be abandoning that party's ship over Joe's recent endorsement or at least calling into party headquarters to complain. He really must be mentally ill on so many levels that it's incomprehensible.

  19. Former PSN subscriberMarch 23, 2010 at 9:02 AM

    Larry Wilson doesn't give a fig who gets on the Sierra Madre City Council. But who does? And who is a good friend of the PSN and Larry Wilson? Kathy Childs that's who. And who is desperately treading water in her Chanel knock offs until she can turn the Montecito property she and Steve Heyerdorf own into cash dollars? Kathy Childs. So today's Larry Wilson attempt at savaging Alcorn, Crawford and Watts is nothing more than Kathy Childs calling in markers.

    Go ahead and cancel your PSN subscription AND TELL THEM WHY!!!

  20. Item 5 on the city council agenda is to remove the moratorium on the Mills Act. This will be a step to helping to preserve Sierra Madre's historic properties. Go to the meeting and support this.

  21. I've got a question, why does the Tribune even "endorse" candidates?

    If you buy into the concept that a paper should be reporting the news and presenting an unbiased account of events, then why?

    I am reminded of the infamous Hearst Newspaper group that used the power of the paper to shape politics and the views of citizens by often times providing false and misleading information.

    I doubt there are many people today that will be influenced by a hand full of mysterious editors who know little about local issues and who prefer to further their own agendas. The Tribune has ZERO credibility and that is one of the reasons the newspaper industry is on it's last leg.

    Subscriptions will continue to shrink, but there will always be some who to choose to purchase the paper.....after all, many of us will need the paper to line our parakeet cages.

  22. Who owns the SNF?

  23. I agree with 8:50

    I'll add anyone who would associate with Bart Doyle either has financial gains (against your neighbors) or a screw loose and needs to seek professional help.

    This man Doyle has nearly destroyed this town, he is like a horrible disease, we keep fighting.
    Well, thanks to people like Mayor MacGillivray, former mayor Kurt Zimmerman, Mayor Pro-tem Don Watts, the town is putting up one HELL of a fight to stay free.
    John Crawford and Pat Alcorn will insure this fight can and will be won. We need to elect them.
    We need to re-elect Don and we need to run Bart Doyle's dirts back in the caves they belong in.
    They are what's wrong with California, not just Sierra Madre!

    Thanks again Heather for telling that "disease" Doyle off. This is a man who needs to be shunned and run out of town, along with Mosca and Moron.

  24. gilman!

    Good idea about the bird cage paper!

    Even better is to use the Mountain Views News, published by that criminal Harriet Susan Henderson, use it for pee pee pads for puppies!
    I have a friend with a new puppy who took a little dump right on her column! I kid you not!

  25. The sad thing about newspapers these days is that they can no longer attract ad revenues in amounts big enough to maintain their editorial independence. Instead they have to kowtow to the big local economic interests like Edison and Sempra in order to keep the patronage flowing. So of course they're going to support the big development slate. It's how they keep the lights on.

    So to speak.

  26. Dear Right Wing Rick, what did you mean by "unwashed mayor"?

  27. 9:39, If I may guess what the brilliant and accurate Right Wing Rick meant, he was being sarcastic - as in the Dirts characterize MaryAnn with such acrimony, they imply she is "unwashed."

  28. I think Rick was talking about Kurt Zimmerman, the term was not meant to be derogatory...just a reflection of the dirtbags opinion of Kurt.
    Kurt is a classy man, the dirts don't know the meaning of the word.

  29. There isn't one damn dirt in this town who can hold a candle to MaryAnn MacGillivray.

    She can outsmart and out class every single one of them! Every single one.
    She has more integrity and decency than any of them have ever had in their entire lives.

  30. What an insult! Pat Alcorn has lived in town longer than Mosca and Moran have been alive serving in a volunteer capacity and attending meetings regularly. Don Watts served on the Planning Commission and the City Council. John Crawford has lived here 10 years.

    Mosca has been in town less than a year when he unpacked his carpet bag and began lying to voters to get elected, credentialed only by belonging to a neighborhood association. Moran only registered to vote days before the filing period for City Council ended. Walsh just flat out doesn't have a clue in spite of the fact that she has 25 years of tap dancing experience.

    Larry, stick to art openings and old ladies dripping ethnic jewelry who so adore seeing their names in print. It's a little late in the eyrie faerie career of social art gossip critic to convert to political hack.

  31. Larry is unavailable right now. Ed Roski
    sent him out for coffee.

  32. The term "unwashed" was used in ironic reference to the view of the Mayor that our society columnist Larry Boy holds. It is not my view.

    Let me be clear. The Mayor - whom I am honored to share St. Rita's pews with - is an outstanding and able public servant, who has ably served our town.

    As the great Woody Allen wrote, "half of the battle is showing up." Unlike Joe Mosca, our great Mayor showed up at SCAG and delivered. That, Larry Boy, is regional engagement.

  33. Larry Wilson can't stand the fact that Sierra Madre doesn't have condominiums fouling its fair city. He wants all cities in the SGV to look like Pasadena's east side of the Arroyo and Union Street - towers to the great god development and the angels of real estate.

  34. It has just occurred to me that Mr. Doyle has probably already contacted Jerry Brown and asked him to focus on overturning Measure V.
    Anybody want to bet?

  35. Big fan of Harry Potter, not so much Bart DoyleMarch 23, 2010 at 11:14 AM

    Methinkith Mr. Doyle is calling on a higher power to overturn Measure V! Another round of losses won't look so good on his resume. Since 2006 he's consistently lost both in elections in Sierra Madre and and the biggie career changing El Monte Transit Village. Now know to associate with embezzlers and dementors as well as snake oil salesmen, he's attempting to burnish his image by lurking in darkened living rooms and seedy venues explaining his former (and I might add losing) schemes to enrich a small group of realtors and contractors who hitched their fortunes to his wagon. Much like Lord Voldemort.

  36. So I spoke with Frank Girardot at the PSN (etc) and he confirmed that they did not speak to the candidates before the editorial decision was made. The reason being that they "didn't want to take up the candidates valuable time." But he did say they went to the Kiwanis debate, and I did see them there. Or at least the first half of it because they were long gone by the time it ended.

    The anecdotal evidence to me is that this endorsement was agenda based and had nothing to do with what is really going on here. As they have before before, the PSN nod went to the big development slate. Apparently that is all they care about.

  37. Here's one of my favorite and true stories about Bart Doyle.

    During the run-up to the Measure V election, Doyle contacted Housing and Community Development (HCD) in Sacramento and had the HCD send the City a letter criticizing Measure V.

    Doyle's scheme came to light when the letter from the HCD was published on the Downtown Dirt website before the City even received it. Councilman Kurt Zimmerman smelled a rat and called the HCD to ask why the Downtown Dirt website received a copy of the letter before the City. Somebody fairly high up in the HCD told Zimmerman that Doyle had requested the letter and that the HCD had determined to send the letter to Doyle first.

  38. Wasn't Doyle involved with sticking Sierra Madre with higher RHNA (low income housing numbers) too?

  39. What is/are the owner/s of the SNF waiting for? It must be that a deteriorating property is more valuable to them than selling.
    Some kind of tax write off?

  40. SM dodged a bullet - so farMarch 23, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    11:26 has posted all anyone needs to know about Bart Doyle:

    "Doyle contacted Housing and Community Development (HCD) in Sacramento and had the HCD send the City a letter criticizing Measure V. "

  41. 2:02, you nailed it. The COE for a SNF has expired and is difficult to renew. The chances of another medical facility coming in are very slim. More than likely they're waiting for the DSP to be overturned so that the 56 condos over underground parking that was designed by Fred Wesley can be permitted and built. Big, big dollars if the RE market ever comes back.

  42. 2:14 I know you meant overturning Measure V to allow the DSP to be resurrected.
    Well shame on them, and who are they?
    Can't we get the names of the owners of that place?

  43. You are correct. Thank you. The wild eyes and foam sometimes get in the way of accuracy.

  44. If no one fills out and returns the Census it will scew the numbers to Sac and DC, lets go "off-the-grid" to hell with them all, I got a case of three inch shells!

  45. Let me tell you people something.
    If Bart Doyle's dirts take back control of your city council, we lose Measure V.
    They will also use EMINENT DOMAIN to develop every square inch of this city.
    Don't think they won't.
    It's later than you think. We may not be able to save California, but we should be able to save Sierra Madre.
    You all better get out and fight.
    Liar/Lobbyist Democratic Party endorsed Mosca must be rejected and the two dupes running with him.
    Fight back, Sierra Madre. Fight back.
    These naive people, on both sides, who say
    "oh, if we're nice to them, they'll be nice to us" NO THEY WON"T! THEY'LL take away your freedom, your freedom of speech and likely your home if it suits their purpose. You'll all be tax slaves of Sacramento.

  46. Since we're talking about Blight as well as blighters, what about all the derelict residential properties in town? When is code enforcement going to start doing its job?

    Driving north up San Carlos St through Arcadia (from Foothill) to Sierra Madre is a real eye opener. All the beautiful, well-kept, single family homes in that area of Arcadia are a testament to good neighbors and responsible property owners.

    Then you cross Orange Grove and enter Sierra Madre. Night and Day! The condition of the properties and the houses on some of the lots make Sierra Madre look like it's on a downward spiral towards slumville.

    Isn't it interesting, upon reflection, that most of the Blighted residential properties in Sierra Madre are owned by Dirts (such as Doyle and Stockly). If they're so concerned about raising Sierra Madre's property values and property tax revenues, why don't they start by fixing up their own properties?

  47. Who of you that are yapping on the blog today is aware that there is a mulifamily development planned on 298-306 Mariposa? How big is it going to be? Is it low income? Is it senior housing? How high will it be? Have you seen the plans? It is on the agenda for a demo permit fee waiver. Quit rehashing the old stuff we have heard over and over.

  48. Anon 3:29

    You said it! There are a lot of property owners in Sierra Madre that need to get off their butts and start maintaining their properties. Whether they are Dirts or not, they sure are cheap and lazy.

  49. 3:50, we've discussed that property on the blog before. It is outside of the area protected by Measure V.

  50. 3:50

    If you're so concerned then why don't you do that research and share it with the rest of us? Perhaps you should do the things that you believe need to be done instead of insisting that others do them.

    Too many Chiefs, not enough Indians.

  51. 4:00, that means that the regular zoning/General Plan requirements apply, yes?
    Or will the developer be suing the city for 'exemptions'?
    Will the development of that property count towards RHNA obligations?
    Will CEQA apply?
    I'd be very nervous if I lived next door.
    Anybody know who the developer is?

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

  53. don't think we should worry bout MariposaMarch 23, 2010 at 4:47 PM

    Mariposa is R3, most likely apts like the ones between Lima and Sunnyside. Not a big change in the buildings we already have...

  54. MaryAnn's FaithfulMarch 23, 2010 at 5:00 PM

    Big Fan of Heather Allen,

    That reminds me of a similar event at Cafe 322 several years ago during the Measure V campaign. Maybe we should get Ms. Allen and that chap together. It could be a match made in Heaven (ie Sierra Madre). Who knows...maybe they could produce a bunch of strong-willed, activist offspring.


  55. Right Wing Rick: Larry knows all of what you are telling him here on the Tattler. The fact is, he does not care. He is a media manipulator, nothing more, nothing less. Issues have nothing to do with it. Agendas, everything.

    Like his boss Frank. Not take up the candidate's "valuable time"? How like the Star-News. They endorse candidates based on which side their bread is buttered on, and in turn, butter the bread of their host.

    But their endorsements never mean much. People are aware of just how sincere that paper is. And nothing, certainly not a Star-News endorsement, is going to stop this landslide. A new era in Sierra Madre politics has begun.

  56. the continued issue of extreme pressure of the real estate agents, building industry associations and development profiteers will not stop until they build out Sierra Madre to maximize short term profits for a fews, regardless of the long term consequences to the city

    for this reason, I cannot vote for Josh Moran, he is directly tied to the real estate industry and has no business on the Council making decisions about development, his immediate family are real estate agents, he has a real estate license he can easily renew and have inside information regarding develoment that could be used improperly

    he just doesn't belong on the Council, he can not add anything and just about any voice he states or decision he makes will be tainted, he'd most certainly have to recuse himself from many Council discussions because of his direct business conflict

    bottom line, Moran is a conflict to a smooth running and is too biased towards real estate development to be impartial and balanced

  57. Hey there 3:53--Been around Sierra Madre a lot lately canvassing--there are a lot of properties that are derilect--it takes a lot of money to keep up a property and if you cannot do it yourself as a homeowner or landlord you have to hire it out. Lots and lots of deferred maintenance. I would not hammer our citizens too much over this, expecially if you come through the upper reaches of wealthy Arcadia into Sierra Madre. Be fare!

  58. I agree Mon oeil. People are not exactly rolling in dough, and as one of my wonderful Sierra Madre neighbors says, just stay ahead of the health department.

  59. Wow! A buyer for the SNF! You rock Don Watts!

  60. Mon oeil

    Your argument is flawed in that it assumes that properties become derelict in a short period of time. The fact is, these properties were derelict when the economy was booming.

    The current condition of the derelict properties in Sierra Madre did not happen in just the last year. They are a result of many years of neglect.

    Furthermore, one does not need to be rich to take care of their property. You don't need to be rich to rake leaves, mow the lawn, trim trees and put a coat of paint on every 10 years or so. You don't need to be rich to clean out your garage or get rid of the old jalopy sitting on the front yard.

    As far as I'm concerned, if one wants to live like trailer trash, then let them move to a trailer park. And, if you are one of those people, I'd be happy to help you pack.

  61. Teryl Willis, David Darbyshire, Shirley Moore and Fay Angus!!!!!!!!!!!

    God Bless you all! May the truth prevail!

    They just exposed Mosca for the liar and fraud he is.

    Mayor MacGillivray should have thrown Mosca out of the chamber, as he was totally out of order!

    How could anyone vote for this creep, Joe Mosca?

  62. Thank you John Crawford for uncovering Joe AGAIN!!!March 23, 2010 at 8:18 PM

    I only subscribe to DirecTV and I hope NEUROBLAST will have it up asap.

    Thank you to our fabulous and intelligent 4 Sierra Madre residents who always have worked to keep Sierra Madre from becoming Doyleville.I hope they made Joe red as a beet. I am sure he will find time to blabble on and on. When will we hear how he took credit on his 2 postcards for doing something which DON AND KURT DID???

    That needs to be put on a Speeker phone blasting in Kersting Ct all day Saturdays!

  63. I've heard a rumor that Watts, Alcorn and Crawford will be endorsed by a local paper. That would be great news.

    I know that the three amigos can keep the "us vs. them" attitude that the Sierra Madre council needs.

  64. There are two political factions within Sierra Madre. "Us vs. Them," and "Them vs. Us."

    Which side are you on?

  65. I can't believe how indecisive and confused Mr. Watts was tonight... not someone I will be voting for

  66. Mr. Watts was the only one who sees the ordinance although legal is flawed.(it was passed by people who did not understand building impact fees) He is not confused. You just don't understand a very complicated legal subject.

  67. I suspect Mr. Watts is speaking at too high a level for 9:35. No wonder the poster is a Moscateer. Rational thought gives those who can only deal with issues on an emotional level a headache.

  68. Don requires a thoughtful audience - he's not a big ego boy showboat, so it's actually necessary to listen to the words he says. Those words are predictably reasonable and insightful.

    Hey that developer's consultant sure sounded like he's been in law school....and did anybody else think it's kind of funny that he was making a strong argument for why SCAG's RHNA numbers are absurd?

  69. Sorry, not a Moscateer, I'm an Engineer... and I do understand rational thought. I'm confused not at the fact that he doesn't realize that the number of fixtures doesn't have a linear correlation with the number of people that live in a building, but that he couldn't separate the task that was at hand. Whether or not the project was out of allignment with the ordinance. It's that simple... The good thing is that the ordinance punishes for high density developement, something I would think everyone on this list would approve of, but that seems to be lost...

  70. 8:29, whichever us or them you're with, is the one I'm not - or is that being too divisive for you? Sort of like Mr. Mosca tonight, when he was violating the correct protocol of the meeting - I think Ms. Moore might have pushed him to the point where he showed who he really is.

  71. The ordinance does not "punish" high density development. The ordinance is made to support the town's infrastructure and the needs of the residents. The Director of Development Services was pretty clear.
    Anybody think the developer will sue?

  72. I'm sorry 10:16, but how do the fees not punish high density development? They are assessed per unit, which would seem to charge developers of high density development more than those of low density development. Please elaborate...

  73. You assume the idea was punishment. It was not.
    The idea of the fees is to protect the city and the residents who are here and who are building here - providing public safety (and if you know anything about this town, you know that our police department alone costs us 51% of our budget), water infrastructure, streets - and new construction is hell on streets - and all the other costs that go to keeping the city alive and well.
    That's what the fees are for. Why do you interpret sound municipal planning as punishment?

  74. Thanks for the clarification... I do understand what the costs of the city are, and why they assess fees. I am only calling it "punishment", as it is more costly for someone to build high density development than it is to build low density development. Maybe the wrong choice of words, but when it costs one amount to build a 3000 sq. ft. single family development, and more to build a 3000 sq. ft. multi-family building, there is definitely a "penalty" to pay. And I don’t think that it is entirely wrong. If we take this issue to the extremes, you can’t tell me that if a 600 sq. ft. house averages 1 person, that an 4,800 sq. ft. house averages 8 people; however, I think that we should get back to the issue, which is the fact that Mr. Watts couldn't separate the task that was at hand. And for that, I am truly disappointed.

  75. Yeah, no AIA architect could ever deal with these kinds of things like planning savants Nancy Walsh or Josh Moran could...

  76. It has come to my attention that a comment was posted on this blog yesterday at 6:38 a.m. I have no idea who wrote that comment. For clarification, I never told Mr. Doyle "You are a liar."

    In my opinion, Mr. Doyle misrepresented the facts about Measure V (while speaking at the coffee). So I took the opportunity to politely correct his mis-statements. I did my best to defend the truth. But I never called him a "liar".


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