MINUTES FROM FEBRUARY 10th 2022
Voting Members in Attendance: David Card, David Kaplan, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, Sue Kohl, Karen Ridgley, Haldis Toppel, Reza Akef, Beth Holden-Garland, Jenny Li, Alan Goldsmith, John Padden, Brenda Theveny, Fay Vahdani, Andy Frew
Voting Alternates: Greg Heidt, Don Scott, Karyn Weber, Melanie Bouer, Judy Orsini
Non-voting Advisors and Alternates: Jack Coleman, Jackson Walter, Sharon Kilbride, Kimberly Bloom, Jessica Rogers, Mary Mueller, Michael Edlen
1. Call to order and reading of Mission Statement. The Chair David Card called the meeting to order at 6:00 pm. David Kaplan read the Mission Statement.
2. Introduction of Zoom engineer. Zoom engineer Alex Ponting was introduced.
3. Roll call of voting members and certification of quorum. The Chair called the roll of voting members and certified that there was a quorum.
4. Approval of Minutes. The minutes of January 27, 2022 were approved as corrected. Upcoming meetings: February 24, 2022: (1) LAPD presentation on public safety and community/police engagement (3rd in a series); (2) Presentation on Metropolis parking app. March 10, 2022: Topics to be announced.
5. Consideration of Agenda. Agenda items may be taken out of order at the discretion of the Chair.
6. Treasurer’s Report. The Treasurer Richard Cohen reported that PPCC’s balance is $58,771.38. There have been no significant transactions since the Treasurer’s last report.
7. General Public Comment – None.
8. Reports, Announcements and Concerns.
8.1. From the Chair/Presiding Officer.
8.1.1. Update re Palisades zoning/request to extend BMO to R1/non-hillside/coastal areas.
The PPCC position letter was sent to CD 11 and from there it was sent to the Planning Dept. CD 11 Sr. Planning Deputy Jason Douglas has advised that CD 11 will be seeking an extension of the Council File which otherwise expires at the beginning of March. He will also be speaking with the Planning Dept. about this matter and has been in contact with PPCC LUC Chair Howard Robinson. We are urging action as soon as possible on PPCC’s request to extend the BMO to the areas of the Palisades that have all three characteristics (R1/non-hillside/coastal). In addition, Mr. Robinson is working with CD 11 to obtain an additional map that will eventually be posted on the PPCC website and that we believe will be helpful to the community in ascertaining relevant development rules for residential properties in the Palisades.
8.1.2. New: CD 11 Candidates Forum/ad hoc committee. There are many candidates for the CD 11 position and the deadline to file is coming up in the next few days. The primary election is in June. The Chair has spoken with Brentwood Community Council Chair Carolyn Jordan about tentatively holding a joint PPCC/BCC Candidates Forum for all CD 11 candidates who wish to join in the forum. Brentwood and the Palisades are communities of interest that share designated Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone status and have common experience with wildfires and evacuations due to our location in the Santa Monica Mountains. BCC is creating a Candidates Forum committee and is tentatively interested in joining with PPCC. One of BCC’s board members is an experienced debate moderator. The Chair asked for volunteers from PPCC to work on a committee together with BCC to put together a CD 11 Candidates Forum and possibly other fora for elected positions. Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Jenny Li, Kimberly Bloom and the Secretary volunteered.
8.2. From Officers.
8.2.1. Chris Spitz (PPCC Secretary). The Secretary explained that right before the meeting tonight she received a message from the Planning Dept. that an “SB 9 implementation memo” has been prepared. She explained the memo briefly, noting that she has not had time to review the contents thoroughly. It appears that some restrictions on SB 9 development may be applied to hillside properties that are identified as being in sensitive habitat areas.
8.3. From Area and At-large Representatives.
8.3.1. Alan Goldsmith (At-large Representative). He has visited the new Angelini restaurant in Palisades Village and reports that there is a high level of enthusiasm for the restaurant.
8.3.2. Sue Kohl (Area 5 Representative) expressed concerns relative to a letter to the editor that was in the Palisadian Post about matters involving Potrero Canyon. Ms. Kohl indicated that she was unaware of some of the elements under construction and requested that this be agendized for a presentation and explanation by City officials to PPCC. Karen Ridgley (Area 4 Representative), the Treasurer and the Secretary also expressed concerns and asked for such a presentation by City officials. The Secretary advised that Matt Quiat (Area 6 Representative; the area where Potrero Canyon is located) could not attend the meeting tonight but is aware of residents’ concerns and also requests that the matter be agendized. The Chair indicated that this would be considered.
8.3.2. Haldis Toppel (Area 3 Representative). She believes more time should be allowed on the agenda for area representatives to speak as they are elected to be the voices of the community.
8.4. From Organizational Representatives
8.4.1. Don Scott (PP Optimists Club). The Optimists Club meets every Tuesday at 10am via Zoom; there are interesting speakers and presentations at each meeting.
8.5. From Government Offices / Representatives – Contact information available at: https://pacpalicc.org/index.php/government-contacts/
8.5.1. LAPD Capt. Jonathan Tom (Commanding Officer, West LA Division), other LAPD officers/personnel: presentation on public safety and community-police engagement (2nd in a series).
LAPD Sgt. Scott Alpert attended, along with SLO Brian Espin. Sgt. Alpert explained that Capt. Tom was unable to attend as he was assigned to Super Bowl duty, and that the Sgt. Alpert and SLO Espin would be the presenters. They then presented a slide show focusing on West Bureau and West Los Angeles Division operations and structure. Topics covered during the presentation included extra police deployment and monitoring that will occur over the weekend to ensure safety during the Super Bowl; the communities that are within the WLA division; LAPD short staffing; the size of the WLA area relative to the number of basic cars (7 basic cars in an area of 65 sq. miles); the importance of having a line of communications with community members, including via emails and phone calls; the types of LAPD operations and resources available to LAPD; the locations where violent crimes most often occur in WLA (according to statistics); comparisons with crimes statistics in other divisions; the locations where property crimes most often occur in the Palisades (along the Sunset corridor, Temescal Canyon Blvd. and W. Channel/Entrada); the status of homeless encampments and the transitory status of most homeless individuals found in the Palisades; and LAPD’s relationship with private security. They emphasized that LAPD relies on communications with community members and private security companies for information-sharing about crimes.
During Q&A, Sgt. Alpert and SLO Espin responded to a variety of questions and comments, including the length of time callers are on hold when reporting incidents; the extra protection that will be provided to our area during the Super Bowl weekend; and the inaccessibility of the Via de las Olas bluff area due to damage to service roads after recent slides in the area (concern raised by Sharon Kilbride, PPCC Homelessness Advisor and PPTFH co-President). Ms. Kilbride explained that homeless individuals camp in the restricted bluff area and regular monitoring by the beach patrol is necessary to protect the community; she also explained that this area, including service roads, is within the jurisdiction of the City Recreation and Parks Dept. SLO Espin confirmed that he has been unable to access the area due to damage to the service roads from recent slides, that Recreation and Parks staff needs to go up and maintain the roads, and that the Potrero Canyon project manager is aware of the slides. In response to a question from Karen Ridgley as to whether park rangers will be assigned to Potrero Canyon, Sgt. Alpert stated that LAPD Chief Moore will attempt to arrange for more park rangers. The Chair thanked Sgt. Alpert and SLO Espin for their presentation.
8.5.2. Noah Fleishman (Palisades Deputy, CM Mike Bonin). The Councilmember’s motion in Council file 21-1071, to increase public access and diversity to the coastal zone, has passed in City Council. The Councilmember also submitted a motion yesterday asking for the City Attorney to report back on litigation related to the Temescal Ridge trail head. There is an effort to maintain public access to the trail.
Additional announcements: Chief Terrazas will step down from LAFD. He has nominated Deputy Fire Chief Kristin Crowley to become the first female chief of LAFD. The beach clean-up with the WLA Boy Scout troop last Sunday was successful. LADOT has been informed about an incident involving a jogger who was struck by car on Sunset at Bienveneda. LADOT is studying what measures can be taken that might make the location safer. The golf tournament at Riviera CC is next week. A map with parking restrictions will be posted. Residents should call LADOT if any problems are observed. There will be traffic around the Super Bowl and Mr. Fleishman advises everyone to avoid the area in Inglewood unless attending the game. He does not have an update on the issue involving the Riviera CC’s use of the Longworth gate for non-maintenance purposes. Reza and another resident have been in contact about this with Len Nguyen of CD 11.
8.6. From PPCC Advisors. None.
9. Reports from Committees.
9.1. See Item 10.1 below.
10. Old Business.
10.1. (As time allows) WRAC-recommended motion, sponsored by the Executive Committee: Support for CF 21- 0002-S186 (Koretz); resolution calling for the City to support (as a state legislative policy) including SB 9 sites as an addendum to the Housing Element.
The Secretary and Chair introduced and explained the motion on behalf of the Executive Committee. No second was necessary as the motion was made by a committee of more than one voting member. Discussion was called but there was none. A vote was then taken; result: unanimous in favor of the motion.
11. New Business.
11.1. See item 8.5.1 above (discussion only).
12. Adjournment. The meeting was adjourned at 7:19 pm.