Sunday, January 30, 2022

Sierra Madre: Some city halls never learn

Mod: My column from the Sunday edition Opinion section of the Pasadena Star News. Yes, the passionless development at the Monastery is going on the ballot. Vote often.



Sierra Madre: Some city halls never learn (Pasadena Star News link): At the Sierra Madre City Council meeting Jan. 11, City Clerk Laura Aguilar announced resident emails would no longer be read aloud, but only posted to their website for the sake of “transparency.” Resident Gary Hood pointed out that much of the city’s population is aging and relies on televised council meetings for their information. No response.

The Mater Dolorosa development’s Environmental Impact Report was promised for February, but showed up weeks early. Perhaps because omicron is waning, and public meetings are possible soon? Preserve Sierra Madre, one of two organizations fighting the unpopular development, was told there would only be five meetings after the EIR emerged — two at the Planning Commission, two City Council. The other one? The lawyers? When you consider the city has only 60 days, that timeline seems swampy.

Planning boss Vince Gonzalez informed the Planning Commission that emails shall no longer be read there, either. You could see the shock on the faces of the commissioners, including a blindsided Chairman Pevsner.

Concerned residents contacted four of the five council members individually, so it wouldn’t violate the Brown Act. Rachelle Arizmendi was left out for obvious reasons. Some council members didn’t respond. An excerpt from that  disregarded email:

“We residents increasingly feel that we do not have a Council that listens to us. We are limited to three minutes on the dot when speaking, nothing anyone has said seems to be taken into consideration. We implored them to read the statements rebutting the draft EIR for the Meadows project … When the EIR was published for the change in the General Plan, the rebuttals to it were not responded to in any meaningful way. Director Gonzalez alone received 90 emails questioning and rebutting the DEIR for the Meadows project. “

In a letter published in the city’s weekly newspaper, resident Deb Sheridan noted:

“The City of Sierra Madre promised transparency in our local government. Mistrust of government at all levels has increased exponentially the last several years, and our fair city of Sierra Madre has added to this. Sierra Madre has failed to inform anyone about SWB9 and SB10, and took no action. Now the City is not being forthright about the zone change request from the Monastery Retreat Center.”

One resident told me that for the first time in her 30 years in town Sierra Madre’s government is aggressively hiding its actions from the community. A year ago the City Council reduced the Planning Commission from seven members to five, then took away design review standards and assigned them to their staff. Transparency is now gone.

It is disturbing that in these COVID-ravaged times Sierra Madre’s City Council members decided they are too busy to hear from their constituents unless they show up in person. Besides, residents don’t get paid by the appearance like they do. Nor do they have a hardly disinterested city staff finding novel ways to disenfranchise the community.

You have to wonder which consultant taught them such techniques. Truly undemocratic, and sadly in-line with much of what we’re seeing elsewhere.

But that is not where the story ends. The other organization fighting Monastery McMansionization made this announcement last Tuesday:

Protect Sierra MadreStop the Housing Project has filed an Initiative to place an Ordinance on the Ballot in this year’s election to be voted on by all registered voters in Sierra Madre. It would change the zoning of the Monastery parcel (Mater Dolorosa) from Institutional to Hillside Residential Zone. A petition with signatures of 10% of Sierra Madre registered voters will put the question on the ballot.”

Remember Measure V in 2007? This is the second time in 15 years Sierra Madre residents have been forced to use the ballot. Some city halls never learn.

sierramadretattler.blogspot.com

38 comments:

  1. Trump calls for 'the biggest protest we have ever had' in DC and other cities if prosecutors investigating him 'do anything illegal'.

    Speaking at a Texas rally, former (FAILED) President Donald Trump called for nationwide protests if prosecutors investigating him and his businesses "do anything illegal."

    In the speech, he appeared to link the investigations to his baseless claim that the 2020 election was rigged, which led to the January 6 Capitol riot.

    "If these radical, vicious, racist prosecutors do anything wrong or illegal, I hope we are going to have in this country the biggest protest we have ever had in Washington DC, in New York, in Atlanta and elsewhere because our country and our elections are corrupt," Trump told the crowd in Conroe, Texas on Saturday night.

    https://news.yahoo.com/trump-calls-biggest-protest-ever-111330246.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Forget politics. Trump is a criminal who, every time he opens his mouth, is calculating how to avoid jail.

      Delete
  2. Confronting history, to heal a nation
    Attorney Bryan Stevenson, author of the bestseller "Just Mercy," has helped to save 145 wrongly-convicted prisoners from execution, but these days the man behind Montgomery, Alabama's National Memorial for Peace and Justice might be better known his other job: educating Americans about the legacy of slavery and racial violence in this country. Stevenson talks with correspondent David Pogue about confronting history as a first step in healing, and gives a tour of the brand new Legacy Museum in Montgomery.

    https://news.yahoo.com/confronting-history-heal-nation-140700684.html

    ReplyDelete
  3. Where did you find that Sierra Madre News picture?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The whole edition can be found at this link.

      https://archive.org/details/csie_002074/mode/2up

      Delete
    2. Apparently back in 1947 the development the fathers at Mater Dolorosa wanted were new chapels. Now they want to make millions cramming mini-mansions on the little acre God forgot.

      Times have certainly changed.

      Delete
  4. US pushes for better tap water but must win over wary public, Glendora, Ca. has some of the worst water for trying to drink, should be classified as non potable water. How is Sierria Madre water compare?

    Angela Stamps won’t drink water from her faucet, showers less and no longer takes the baths she once found relaxing. She cooks with tap water but sometimes skips rinsing her produce.

    Even though the amount of lead in Flint, Michigan's tap water has been well below a key state threshold for several years, she hasn't been able to stop worrying since going through the trauma of the city's lead crisis.

    “I just don’t trust it,” she said.
    The issue will hit home in many cities and towns as the Biden administration pushes to replace millions of lead service lines in the U.S. that can leach lead into drinking water. In addition, tightened testing standards might reveal higher lead levels and put more communities on notice about problems.

    https://news.yahoo.com/us-pushes-better-tap-water-140816472.html

    ReplyDelete
  5. 'It takes so much effort to get a law changed': Why the Wildlife Department wants authority over licenses, fees.
    The white members of Oklahoma legislative bodies are criminals who want to once again steal monies from the Indian controlled state.

    https://news.yahoo.com/takes-much-effort-law-changed-110027199.html

    ReplyDelete
  6. Republican-led Pennsylvania court deems mail-in voting law unconstitutional

    What they're saying: "If presented to the people, a constitutional amendment… is likely to be adopted. But a constitutional amendment must be presented to the people" before legislation like Act 77 can take effect, the court wrote in its opinion.

    The other side: "The strength of our democracy and our country depends on eligible voters casting their ballot and selecting their leaders," Wolf's office said.

    "We need leaders to support removing more barriers to voting, not trying to silence the people."

    https://news.yahoo.com/republican-led-pennsylvania-court-deems-153638046.html

    ReplyDelete
  7. More republican Blow-Hard traitors with threats too!
    Trump vows the GOP will investigate 'Biden corruption' if they retake Congress in the midterm elections.

    Donald Trump said Republicans would investigate "the Biden corruption" if they retake Congress in the midterms.

    Speaking at a Texas rally, Trump also complained about investigations into the Capitol riot and his finances.

    Some GOP politicians have pledged reprisals against Democrats in response to the Jan. 6 committee investigation.

    Speaking at a rally in Texas, former President Donald Trump said Republicans would investigate President Joe Biden for corruption if they retake Congress in the midterm elections.

    "Biden has the real scandals. And rest assured, when Republicans retake Congress, the Biden corruption will be investigated and exposed by Congress," Trump told supporters in Conroe, Texas, on Saturday night.

    https://news.yahoo.com/trump-vows-gop-investigate-biden-143730627.html

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank goodness the people who are advocating for the well being of the whole town finally figured out they had to sue!!
    Ya think it's just finding the right law already on the books, and that is not true. Developers will do anything to get what they want, so the only way to slow them down is to get lawyers.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Damn the "Don" Donald Trump. That poor excuse of a man appears to be in cahoots with the KGB Russian President in destroying the United States of America. When are all Americans going to wake up and see this traitor for who he really is. When is he going to be tried for treason and put in jail? The "Don" shows you if you have enough money for lawyers, you can get away with anything.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Parents move into Sierra Madre to raise a family with no regard or clue to the work generations have put into preserving our little community and keeping it a place you want to live. This community has fought Sacramento, builders and many others trying to profit off of our little village in the big city, shame on you!

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  11. 9:06, and anyone who cares - lawyers cost money, please donate to Protect Sierra Madre, if you can. Any amount helps. Donate your time too - it is amazing how many Madreans don't know what is going on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is why the city has pulled things like reading emails at city council and planning commission meetings. They are trying to cover this Mater Dolorosa mess up as much as possible.

      Delete
    2. Gee, and here Ithought they were all about transparency.

      Delete
  12. Police officer fired after body-cam footage caught him tasering a 64-year-old man in a wheelchair 4 times.

    A Florida police officer has been fired after tasering a 64-year-old in a wheelchair multiple times, the St. Petersburg Police Chief said.

    The incident took place in June when officer Matthew Cavinder and his partner responded to a call that Timothy Grant was trespassing at a gas station, according to Fox 13.

    They ran Grant's name and discovered he had five active warrants when they arrived.

    Body-camera footage shows the officers arresting Grant, who is sitting in a wheelchair. Footage shows them attempting to lift him and telling him to stand up.

    https://news.yahoo.com/police-officer-fired-body-cam-162626639.html

    ReplyDelete
  13. Passionists order, Catholic dioceses didn’t reveal predator deacon in their midst

    https://chicago.suntimes.com/2021/4/16/22386205/passionists-immaculate-conception-deacon-child-sex-abuse-james-griffith-catholic-religious-orders

    ReplyDelete
  14. Former Passionist priest, who once served in Pittsburgh, gets probation for 'unnatural acts' on a minor

    https://triblive.com/news/world/former-pittsburgh-priest-gets-probation-for-unnatural-acts-on-a-minor/

    ReplyDelete
  15. The church covered up the crimes of Father Daniel Lyne

    The Catholic religious order of Passionist priests covered up for a serious child-abuser, Father Daniel Lyne, while he committed sexual crimes against teenage boys who were aspiring to become Catholic priests. In 2002, while Daniel Lyne was facing the likelihood of a criminal prosecution, he suddenly died — just in time, before court proceedings could begin. Thus, he evaded a possible jail sentence. Daniel Lyne's fellow-priests are remaining silent about his crimes.

    http://www.brokenrites.org.au/drupal/node/156

    ReplyDelete
  16. We are a 3.2 sq mile town butted up against a high fire zone with wildlife that roams the city. Our wells have run dry and water is costly. The town is already so crowded that you have to walk a distance and cross a busy street to get to a restaurant. Out of town hikers flood into the streets next to the trails on the weekends creating a situation that is dangerous for residents and wildlife. At's about time our City Council steps up to the plate in keeping their promise of protecting our community and way of life.

    ReplyDelete
  17. The word is hamlet, not village!
    Unfortunately graft and discrimination prevailed in Sierria Madre, Ca. and it all came crashing down.
    Living with in there means has been a problem for Sierria Madre, ca.
    Poor planning and execution of those plans or pipe dreams have placed Sierria Madre in a corner.
    You all need to clean house and get moving along in 2022.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This message was brought to you by High Sierria Pipe Dreams Inc.

      Delete
  18. When the two John's on the last city council reduced the planning commissioners to 5 and took design review away from the planning commission and gave it to the Planning & Community Preservation Director, Vincent Gonzalez, we knew something was not right. On the Planning Commission we had 2 architects and residents who knew and cared about preserving our small town. Does anyone know what qualifications Mr. Gonzalez possessed when he was hired by Elaine Aguilar or what his qualification are now to handle his job?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They were cutting down on volunteer planning commissioners to save money.

      Delete
  19. Living next to Mr. Wilson trail head is not a pleasure anymore. Today before 6 am we were woken to loud music and voices of hikers dressing to make the hike. I feel sorry for you neighbors living next to the Monastery where they want to build 42 track homes and another park right off of Carter. That will give a town of 11,000 people it's 6th or 7th park for people with no consideration of the displaced wildlife.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One of the most hypocritical of Sierra Madre's claims is that, as a city, it cares about wildlife.

      Delete
  20. Parents struggle after monthly child tax credit payments end, in West Virgina
    Senate negotiations stalled
    Manchin effectively put the negotiations over the Build Back Better package on ice last month when he said he could not support the provisions, particularly the enhanced child tax credit.

    The Senate has said it plans to revisit the package and possibly change or break up the proposals into ones that Manchin and other moderate Democrats would approve.
    However, President Joe Biden recently acknowledged that the beefed-up credit might wind up on the cutting room floor.
    Democratic supporters of the enhanced credit aren't giving up so easily. Five senators -- Michael Bennet of Colorado, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Raphael Warnock of Georgia and Ron Wyden of Oregon -- last week wrote a letter to Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris urging them to "secure" an extension of the credit.

    https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/30/politics/child-tax-credit-child-poverty/index.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope the Democrats bring home to the West Virginia voters that it is Manchin's fault.

      Delete
  21. What about the Sierria Madre, ca. pervert that got caught at the Canadian Boarder?

    ReplyDelete
  22. If they are moving along with the monastery development, why not move along 1 Carter?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Two pockets of the McMansion cancer.

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    2. They are. Haven't you been up there, recently to see the No Trespassing signs, and the story poles?

      Delete
  23. will the sm perv be allowed to buy one of the monastery houses?

    ReplyDelete
  24. Ironically, that newspaper headline was when the Monastery wanted to be put in the Institutional zone and the city refused and forced then to stay in a Residential zone. Basically, whatever zoning change the Monastery ever wants the city says no, even if it is what the city previously wanted. Now the Burn the Monastery group is trying to force the entire Monastery into a different residential zone to hamstring them even more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Burn the Monastery."

      How dramatic. I'd prefer to say they're protecting the monastery against that damn fools currently running it.

      Delete
    2. Jolly old Father Higgins is building 3,300 sq ft McChapels. The only difference is people will live in them.

      Delete
  25. This article got to #3 on the PSN 'Most Popular' chart. I added a screen shot to the post.

    Funny thing about this is there are two charts. One for people who read on smart phones, and one for people who read on computers. The chart you see when you are on your cell phone is always very different from the one you'll see when sitting at your computer.

    That #3 peak happened at a little after 9am this morning on the computer chart. Right around the time all the employees at SM City Hall would have clocked in.

    ReplyDelete

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