MINUTES FROM MARCH 10th 2022
Voting Members in Attendance: David Card, David Kaplan, Richard Cohen, Sue Kohl, Joanna Spak, Jenny Li, Steve Cron, Haldis Toppel, Alan Goldsmith, Fay Vahdani, Andy Frew, Janet Anderson, Brenda Theveny
Voting Alternates: Rick Mills, Jessica Rogers, Karyn Weber, Barbara Kohn, Richard Blumenberg
Non-voting Advisors and Alternates: Pam McGranahan, Jackson Walter, Rick McGeagh, Marilyn Wexler, Cindy Kirven, Lee Anne Sanderson, Gil Dembo, Michael Edlen
1. Call to order and reading of Mission Statement. The Chair David Card called the meeting to order at 6:00 pm. The Chair 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 February 24, 2022 were approved. Upcoming meetings: March 24, 2022: (1) LAFD brush clearance presentation; (2) Motion to add Resilient Palisades to Appendix A to the Bylaws (“Organizations Eligible to Send Representatives”); (3) First distribution of proposed Bylaws Amendments; (4) (As time allows) WRAC-recommended motion re “cool asphalt” paving. April 14, 2022: (1) Disaster preparedness update by K.C. Soll, CERT coordinator; (2) Second distribution and vote on proposed Bylaws Amendments.
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 $58,435.05. There have been no significant transactions since the Treasurer’s last report.
7. General Public Comment.
7.1. Trina Saltzman (resident) expressed concerns about problems with the Metropolis parking app at the Bank of America lot. She has a smart phone but due to the problems she no longer uses the lot and instead parks on the street when visiting Starbucks or the Bank; she sometimes visits the Bank of America on 26th Street in Brentwood where there is a big parking lot, to avoid having to deal with parking problems at the branch in the Palisades.
8. Reports, Announcements and Concerns.
8.1. From the Chair/Presiding Officer.
8.1.1. George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon: (1) Link to download landscaping plans on PPCC website; (2) Update on PPCC request for a City presentation. A link to download the plans was received and has been posted on the PPCC website [see: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ZNV38_oSonjIlrLExnK2dPtxzCsIQ5Lc/view]. Noah Fleishman had said he would provide an update during government reports but he was unable to attend.
8.1.2. [New] There will be a closure of one lane of PCH northbound between Chautauqua and Temescal Canyon Blvd. to replace a 30” water main. The closure will begin on March 21st, with a target end date in June.
8.2. From Officers.
8.2.1. Richard Cohen (Treasurer). The Executive Committee submitted a letter to City officials on March 7, 2022, requesting written answers to questions, which will be included in the minutes [https://pacpalicc.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/PPCC-EC-Potrero-Questions-1.pdf].
8.3. From Area and At-large Representatives.
8.3.1. Jenny Li (Area 7 Representative) reported on a follow up by the Metropolis Parking App representative to questions at the February 24, 2022 PPCC board meeting. A memo with answers from Corey Owens of Metropolis has been forwarded to the PPCC board. [See: https://pacpalicc.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/Metropolis-Follow-Up.pdf.] Ms. Li further explained that a 10-minute grace period is provided; that Metropolis enforces restrictions on handicap parking spots but that everyone must pay to park, including those with ADA placards; that phone validations with the QR code work for two hours; that those who do not pay will be billed for the $70.25 penalty. There was no explanation as to how Metropolis finds persons who do not pay. The daily maximum charge is $20 regardless of whether you sign up in advance but run over. We may invite the landlord to attend a PPCC meeting to address concerns at a later date. Haldis Toppel (Area 3 Representative): She was at Bank of America today and there was no enforcement; the attendant says that is the case.
8.3.2. Alan Goldsmith (At-large Representative) suggested that board members add their titles to their “squares” during Zoom board meetings.
8.3.3. Sue Kohl (Area 5 Representative) asked whether PPCC may return to in-person meetings. The Treasurer explained that the community room at the library is needed for storage and the hours are limited. We may revisit this in a few months.
8.4. From Organizational Representatives.
8.4.1. Andy Frew (Theatre Palisades) reported that the Theatre is returning with live performances of Neil Simon’s “The Prisoner of Second Avenue,” beginning on March 25th through May 1st.
8.4.2. Rick McGeagh (PPBA) announced that the PPBA baseball season begins this Saturday at 7:30am – a very happy day in the Palisades. Sue Kohl (Area 5 Representative) added that there will also be the traditional PPBA pancake breakfast.
8.4.3. Barbara Kohn (PP Historical Society) advised that the Centennial celebration will take place on May 3 and there is a sign-up on the Society’s website [https://www.pacificpalisadeshistory.org]. A commemorative blanket is also being sold on the website. Please re-register in order to ensure a seat at the event.
8.5. From Government Offices / Representatives – Contact information available at: https://pacpalicc.org/index.php/government-contacts/
8.5.1. LAPD presentation on public safety and community-police engagement (3rd in a series) – Capt. Jonathan Tom (Commanding Officer, West LA Division), SLO Brian Espin, Sgt. Scott Alpert.
SLO Espin presented a slide show focusing on community involvement with LAPD/West LA Division. He discussed opportunities for involvement such as the Volunteer Community Police and the Reserves. He stressed that the West LA station is available for calls, both emergency and otherwise. The front desk is open for business between 7am and 11pm daily.
The West LA Division will be sending out postcards to Westside residents with contact instructions as to all crimes and other problems tha citizens encounter. There is an anti-terrorism app available. Contact WLA@lapd.online. SLO Espin also noted that there will be a “Coffee with West LA Division Detectives” on March 24th from 7-9am at the West LA station. The Chair thanked SLO Espin for the presentation.
Various questions and comments were then raised by board and community members and additional information was provided by Capt. Tom. Topics included how to follow LAPD; the agencies participating in hillside sweeps which will occur on May 18 and June 15; the importance of watching out for misinformation on Nextdoor; and LAPD’s enforcement of no overnight parking on PCH. The Chair thanked Capt. Tom. Additional information was provided about the postcard which the American Legion is working on and will pay to mail to all Palisades residents. Jim Cragg (Commander, American Legion Palisades Post 283) explained that the postcard will include phone numbers to call in various situations. Mr. Cragg also announced that on April 2 in the Palisades Park, the Legion will offer CPR and Stop the Bleed training for Legion members and the community.
8.5.2. Janet Turner (Deputy District Director, U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu). Ms. Turner explained that Congressman Lieu and Senator Padilla have introduced comprehensive legislation in the House and Senate, called the “Housing for All Act of 2022,” that would invest in proven solutions to address critical affordable housing shortages in California and across the country. A USPS reform bill has finally passed in Congress which will hopefully be a big shot in the arm for postal service on the Westside.
With regard to community project funding (previously called “earmarks”), Ms. Turner reported that 10 projects had been approved for a total of $11 million last year. They are now racing to put in a list of projects for this year. She has reached out to PRIDE for beautification projects and also suggested a possible upgrade to the Recreation Center for ADA accessibility. PPCC as a 501(c)(3) or the City could submit a request. The deadline for applying for project funding is March 18th. The Chair: He has forwarded the Community Project funding program information to CD11 and Recreation & Parks Department suggesting possible ideas for funding, including an upgrade to ADA for the children’s playground at the Recreation Center and for a trail connecting the mouths of Potrero and Temescal Canyons. Sue Kohl: The bathrooms at the Recreation Center also badly need work. Leslie Campbell (resident/dog park group founder): She hopes that some of the funding can go toward the Palisades dog park project. The dog park group could apply as a 501(c)(3). Ms. Turner will forward the information to Ms. Campbell.
8.6. From PPCC Advisors.
8.6.1. Pam McGranahan (Homelessness Advisor) gave an update on the recent Point in Time Homeless Count, sponsored by the Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness. She reported that the Count went well; the preliminary number of homeless is the same as in the 2020 Count, but cannot be officially reported until approved. More people were found in RVs and in cars because of the limits on enforcement during COVID, especially on PCH south of Sunset. The Beach Patrol is checking the hillsides once a week and so far this winter no one has been found in these fire areas. Ms. McGranahan is concerned that this may change as the weather improves. The Via de las Olas bluff areas must be patrolled by foot now, as the “Mule” (utility vehicle) cannot get up the washed-out trail. A special hillside blitz is being planned for May 18th in a multi-agency effort on the same day to find any encampments in the entire hillside area.
9. Reports from Committees.
9.1. PPCC Candidates Forum Committee (Jenny Li, Committee Chair). Update on BCC-PPCC Forum.
Ms. Li announced that the CD 11 Candidates Forum will be held via Zoom webinar on Tuesday, May 3 at 7pm. Confirmed candidates include Erin Darling, Greg Good, Jim Murez, Mike Newhouse, Traci Park and Allison Polhill. Candidates’ website links will be sent out to the community.
The Committee is inviting input from the community on forum topics and questions for the candidates. Please submit suggestions for topics or questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
9.2. PPCC Palisades Forestry Committee (PFC/Cindy Kirven, Chair). Update on PFC tree-planting projects; request for Board approval of possible press release.
Ms. Kirven announced the upcoming planting of street trees along Hartzell St. on March 24. The next effort will involve planting of street trees along Via de la Paz from Bestor to Via de las Olas. These installations continue the aim of planting “100 Trees for 100 Years, honoring the Palisades’ Centennial celebration. A Coast Live Oak was planted at Founders Oak island on January 14th, in conjunction with the Historical Society; this was the first of many trees that are expected to be planted along more residential streets and in public park areas such as the park at Palisades Recreation Center. Additional trees are aimed to be planted at the Veterans Gardens and the tennis center.
Ms. Kirven requested the Board’s approval of a press release announcing these events, which has been forwarded to the board. The press release was also posted on the screen [see: https://pacpalicc.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/Tree-Planting-Press-Release.pdf].
The Chair then asked if any board members objected to the press release. There were no objections or abstentions. The Chair stated that the press release was therefore approved.
10. Old Business – None.
11. New Business.
11.1. See Item 8.5.1 above.
11.2. Update on the Pali Micro Grid and other projects – Ryan Craig, Resilient Palisades.
Mr. Craig, a member of the Resilient Palisades’ Clean Energy Resilience Team, provided an update on the status of the Pali Micro Grid program. He related that 80 residents have requested proposals for roof top solar installation. The first phase involves screening four contractors to offer solar panels and battery programs. With one request you can get four quotes. Resilient Palisades wants to get the word out to Palisadians to go solar.
Mr. Craig also provided information about other Resilient Palisades projects, including the Gas Free Gardens campaign to educate residents and gardeners in order to eliminate gas-powered blowers and other equipment, and the Zero Waste program to encourage the use of reusable produce bags. They are also planning an Earth Day event, possibly at Will Rogers, on April 16th. Residents are invited to visit the Resilient Palisades website for more information [https://resilientpalisades.org].
12. Adjournment. The meeting was adjourned at 7:33pm.