Return to 2024 Minutes


1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  The meeting was called to order at 6:05PM and Karen Ridgley read the community Council mission:  

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
Voting members present: Maryam Zar, Sue Kohl, Jenny Li, Dave Card, Beth Holden Garland, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Kimberly Bloom, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Andrew Wolfberg, Chris Spitz, Bruce Schwartz, Aileen Haugh, Alisa Wolfson, Eric Dugdale, Kevin Niles, Genevieve Bostic, Ryan Craig, Hagop Tchakerian, Courtney Macker.

Non-voting members present: Cindi Young, Joanna Spak, Diana Daniele, Nancy Niles, Michael Edlen, Daphne Gronich, Betsy Handler, Harlan Hogue, Andy Frew, Richard Blumenberg, James Alexakis.

3.   Introduction of attendees.
Introduction of new CD 11 District Director, Juan Fregoso, introduced himself and gave some background as to his experience and path to CD 11. He pledged to meet with the community on February 21st.  He said he’d confirm a date for an onsite tour of the Palisades and a meet and greet with the community. In the last year he was the Director of Homelessness and Housing for Councilwoman Park. He has been with the City of LA for 9 years (CD 13 previously/Mitch O’Farrell) and so he’s new to the District but not new to the City. He was Field Deputy for Echo Park and Elysian Park and brings that experience to this role. He still oversees homelessness, as well as the District and CD 11 deputies. Part of the big vision is advocating for additional resources in the Coastal Zone. These efforts focus on additional resources to address tourism, disaster impact and more. He is currently hoping to secure a Coastal Care Plus team for the coastal zone. He is also looking to secure dedicated coastal rangers and dedicated DOT support for the coastal zone – but budgeting is an issue and that’s where they are advocating.  Juan was asked when the bridge project contractor, Jacobs, would be coming to the community for feedback. He said that would be in March. The trail project is still ”slogging through.”

Michael Amster also introduced Dellarose Santos, who is a former LAHSA member and has a great deal of outreach experience and will be assisting the West LA office in the field with casework as well as focus on larger plans to address homelessness in the Northern part of the District. She said she looked forward to working with us all. She will help handle maintenance and infrastructure issues, as well as homeless issues and individualized case work. Questions arose regarding sidewalk repairs. Michael Amster said there is a long queue for those repairs and can take up to 10 years – and is a result of a class action lawsuit for failure to provide accessibility as required by federal law, that was settled by LA City several years ago. Michael said he and Dellarose work as a team and he remains our main point of contact.

LAPD SLO Brian Espin introduced Alisha Jordan, new Patrol Captain for West LA. Captain Jordan said she is excited about being here in West LA again – was here in 2001 as Sergeant. She’s been the Patrol Captain for 8 weeks. She looks forward to getting acquainted with Pacific Palisades. Has worked in investigations, narcotics and as a detective for the last almost 20 years. She enjoys the job and taking care of the community seriously. Every day, she speaks with her officers so they know what she expects and how they can communicate better to benefit the community. She looks forward to hearing from us to learn how to serve us better. She explained that she’s responsible for patrol rounds and indications of where for them to go or concentrate their rounds if there are problem spots. She likes hearing from the community and communicates with Brian daily. She likes to hear from the SLOs as well as the patrol officers. She often stays late to ensure that the officers have access to her. She also listens to her leadership team: sergeants and watch commander as well as SLOs. She plans to go out with them and learn more about her area of command. Dave Card told her about the PCH Task Force and encouraged her to attend. Captain Jordan said she has been working with LAPD Traffic West, and knows there was a traffic task force underway the last two days. She also said she’d be mindful of issues that arise related to the Genesis Golf Tournament coming to town soon, including traffic control and appropriate public conflict, including drinking in public. There were also questions about motorcycle and motorized bike gangs riding through town.  Captain Jordan said she’s heard about this and was working out the best time and manner to deploy officers in the most effective way.  Brian Espin said he would have more on this.

4.   Approval of Minutes:  The minutes for January 25, 2024 were approved.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings.
The agenda was considered as presented.  The President announced that Jackie Wiley, Outreach Specialist from CA Dept of Financial Protection & Innovation would be our guest on February 22nd and the March 14th meeting would be hybrid with an in-person element at the Palisades Library meeting room.

6.   Treasurer’s Report. 
The Treasurer reported that our balance was $58,856.70.  An outstanding check for the Park still remains to be cashed. We had a little more income from the wine fundraiser.  The President explained that PPCC took in a $7500 donation from a Palisades Recreation Center patron who wished to donate by credit card, and that we will remit the donation (minus any fees charged to us by the PayPal processor) to the Palisades Community Center Committee, a local 501(C)(3) which accepts and disperses donations for the Park.

7.   General Public Comment.  There was no general public comment. 

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President reported on positions and letters/significant correspondence since the last meeting: , and from last meeting:

8.1.2.   The President gave an update regarding cameras for open spaces and that she has spoken to LA Parks Foundation tech people who informed her and VP Sue Kohl that we would have to use RAP tech and suggested we invest in an electric systems upgrade at the Park in order to accommodate cameras as well as better lights – both of which RAP offers and has implemented in other parks. He suggested we advocate with the Council Office for budgeting.  The President said she would invite him to an upcoming meeting to tell us more and take questions. We are also considering foot patrols using a RAP vendor in order to help put more eyeballs on and around our park problem spots (to help LAPD). See more from Sue Kohl report, item 8.2.1. below.

8.1.3.   The President confirmed that Michael Amster has confirmed that Jacobs Engineering will begin community outreach surrounding the bridge project, in March.

8.1.4.   See above.

8.1.5.   The President reminded everyone that the LA Park Commission will meet in Pacific Palisades, at the Rec Center on March 21st.  The EC will send a letter of welcome and highlight out priority concerns, before then.

8.1.6.   The President informed the board that she had recently learned that Al Fresco dining alcohol sales permits are planned to be issued through a ministerial “administrative process” with no community notice requirement. She wanted the board to be aware in case we wished to comment on that.

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus.

8.2.1.   Sue Kohl, Vice President, reported that her talk with RAP tech Jimmy Newsome was that cameras can’t be done without better lights, the lights need a new electric infrastructure, and he thought we needed about 15 cameras. He said a minimum $500,000 investment in the electric infrastructure upgrade was needed. Flock reps then called off the meeting planned for the next day. Hagob Tchakerian (Rotary/Service Clubs Alternate) suggested cameras on the main office building, which the President said the tech people said could be done. He also suggested that the cost was too high, but the President explained that the City has its own fees that tend to be exorbitantly high, but they are as they are. He also said Potrero Canyon had electric infrastructure because it has sprinklers. The President affirmed that Chair Emeritus Dave Card had confirmed that that’s true. Dave Card said there is a comprehensive electric blueprint that should be studied before an assumption is made that there is insufficient electric infrastructure to accommodate lights and cameras.

8.2.2.   Beth Holden-Garland, Secretary – no updates.

8.2.3.   Dave Card, Chair Emeritus – no updates.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives.

8.3.1.   Cindi Young, Area One 1st Alternate, reported that PPTFH remains in limbo as to substantive responses from the County to assert whether beach areas were counted in the LAHSA Point in Time homeless count.

8.3.2.   Murray Levy, Area One Primary rep, had no Hillside construction updates.

8.3.3.   Karen Ridgley, Area Four Primary rep, said rain issues persist at both the Palisades Bowl as well as Tahitian Terrace communities but both areas report having seen some improvement in the runoff and rain issues.  The Las Casas storm drain issue persists, and they hope CD11 can help secure a commitment for more storm drains being constructed at Las Casas, so as to stave off the kind of pooled runoff water that encroaches into the street, making it impassable.  She also mentioned construction noise which goes on now on Saturdays.  There was some disagreement as to the necessity of Saturdays (though the end of April), and the President said she would help resolve that communication break down and see if we can keep Saturdays off the construction schedule.  Daphne Gronich, Area Four 2nd Alternate, asked about a video of intruders in Asilomar bluffs/Seabec Circle sent by LeeAnne Sanderson (Area Four 1st Alternate) and also requested that talks continue regarding mitigation of water run off on Las Casas.  The President asked Michael Amster to follow up.  SLO Espin said he send the video to the crime analysis division and is waiting for follow up or identification information. He will keep us posted. SLO Espin was asked to do more to put information out to the community when crime occurs. Courtney Macker, PPRA Primary rep, asked if in his absence someone else at the West LA headquarters could send notifications and inform the community of crime occurring or things to be watchful for.  Haldis Toppel, Area Three Primary rep, shared that in the past she had her “e-cam” messages which she compiled with information that she was able to get from the LAPD West headquarters by calling the front office and asking for information.  The President said she was glad Haldis reminded us all that she provided this citizen service to the community for a very long time, and lamented her inability to call and get similar caliber information any longer.  The President asked SLO Espin to confer with his LAPD command team and come up with a way to get information flowing to Palisadians.

8.3.4.   Chris Spitz, At-Large rep, gave a presentation about a pilot measure regarding street takeovers citywide, which is an activity that disrupts communities. The intersection of PCH and Temescal Canyon Road is one of the top five areas of concern for street takeovers in LAPD’s West division.  According to a police report, during 2020-2022 there was some concern over instances involving vehicles doing “doughnuts” on Temescal (although not in the PCH intersection), and now CD11 (Kevin Brunke) and LAPD (Brian Espin) are willing to work with us to see if this activity is still ongoing.  There had been a suggestion to add surveillance cameras or rumble bars – but we’re told that the measure most likely to be utilized on Temescal, if warranted, would be hardening the center line with bollards that prevent doughnuts (and u-turns).  Mr. Brunke assured Ms. Spitz that community input would be sought before any installation occurs and that our Field Deputy Michael Amster would be our liaison on this matter.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives.  None.

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives (as available).

8.5.1.   Brian Espin, Senior Lead Officer (SLO) Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), reported on the home invasion on Charmel. The suspect is still in custody because this was violent as an armed invasion.

SLO Espin also reported that we’ve seen more of the motorcycle gangs. Last week a gang of young people on bikes went to the Chevron store in the Palisades and looted it (took items).  This will appear in the next crime report.  Brian says he knows they also steal from CVS, but they don’t report it (they file for insurance and let it go, it seems).

The President asked about the response time to the “hot prowl” that involved a deadly weapon.  SLO Espin said they knew who the offender was though a network of tracking task forces that have been implemented throughout LA.  In the case of the invasion on Charmel, the offender was being watched and so he was able to be apprehended quickly.  SLO Espin stressed the importance of cameras which helped in identifying the suspect. SLO Espin also said that a Street Racer task force was deployed, by Capt. Gabaldon after hearing from the community regarding fast cars peeling through our village streets and could be seen on the roads today. The President read an email exchange with the Captain and thanked him for the quick turnaround.  SLO Espin said they use social media and photographs to identify and find the speeding drivers.
Alisa Wolfson (Canyon School/Education Primary) asked if the home invasion was related to another break-in in the neighborhood.  SLO Espin said the suspect is responsible for a few burglaries in the Palisades.

8.5.2.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Pacific Palisades & Brentwood, reported that as to the street takeover program, the LA Dept. of Transportation is happy to have conversations with the community. Measure HLA is on the March ballot, and if it passes, CM Park has made a motion to figure out how to implement HLA, if it were to pass.
Streets LA, LADWP and LA SAN report 600 mud or landslide reports across the city and more than half have been addressed.  460 tree emergencies have been reported with more than 90% addressed. Locations in Pacific Palisades are also being addressed.  Michael introduced a Feb. Winter Storm County survey. He’d like Palisadians to take the survey.

Michael further reported that Jacobs will conduct outreach for the bridge project feedback in March.

He also said that the grading at the Paseo Miramar project is almost done, so the bulk of the impact on the community has passed.

8.5.3.   Radmehr Nowroozi, SD 24, Field Representative, Palisades, Brentwood, Westwood and Westside, was not present.

8.5.4.   Skylar Payab, AD 42, Field Deputy, Pacific Palisades & Brentwood, was not present.

8.5.5.   Marian Ensley, West Area Representative, Mayor Karen Bass, was not present.

8.5.6.   Zac Gaidzick, Coastal and Westside Field Deputy, County Supervisor, Lindsey Horvath, was not present.

8.5.7.   Allison Holdorff (senior advisor to LAUSD Board Member Nick Melvoin) reported that in August, LAUSD will install cameras at Revere.  She also noted that Kenter Canyon will have a great community building event over the weekend. The President asked why the cameras took three years from approval to installation, and why so expensive.  Ms. Holdorff explained that this was a district-wide camera program, so they shelved the original order and funded this new one with special purchase orders and a new timeline. They saved a ton of money and are rolling the cameras out as fast as they can.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.  None.

9.   Reports from PPCC Committees.

9.1.   Committee of the Three Chairs (David Card, Chair; Chris Spitz and Maryam Zar).  The committee nominated Daliah Setareh as the 2nd Alternate for Area Eight, to join the team of Andrew Wolfberg (Primary) and Eli Safaie-Kia (1st Alternate). Daliah was confirmed without objection. The board welcomed her to the PPCC.

9.2.   PPCC Land Use Committee (LUC/ Chris Spitz, Chair).  The LUC recommended that the board adopt the letter linked below as a statement of opposition to a proposal by the LA Dept. of City Planning (DCP) to change construction noise thresholds.  DCP proposes lowering these thresholds without submitting to a community comment and City Council review process.  LUC recommends opposition to both the substantive lowering of thresholds as well as the streamlined process of adopting the changes.

The proposed position was presented to the Board after discussion and review of relevant materials.  See the LUC report at: The board unanimously approved the position and the following letter:

10.   Old Business.  None.

11.   New Business.

11.1.   Motion re Gas-Powered Leaf Blowers.  Resilient Palisades (Ryan Craig) and Chris Spitz made a motion in strong support of CF 24-0055, requesting support for measures to enforce the city’s restriction on gas-powered leaf blowers. No second was necessary because the motion was brought by two voting members.

Motion Background:  Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC) has long-supported regulations restricting the use of gas-powered leaf blowers in residential neighborhoods. Advocacy by determined, environmentally conscious Palisadians led to enactment of the existing ban in Los Angeles.  A respected community environmental organization and member of the PPCC board, Resilient Palisades, has engaged in educational outreach campaigns to Palisadians and gardeners (in both English and Spanish) on harm caused by gas-powered blowers.  In addition, in 2023, Resilient Palisades coordinated and funded purchases of nearly 50 commercial electric blowers for gardeners who work in the Palisades and committed to give up their gas-powered blowers.  Unfortunately, over the years PPCC has regularly heard reports about residents’ illegal use of gas-powered leaf blowers and inadequate enforcement of the ban.

Motion:  PPCC strongly supports the motion in Council File 24-0055 (Raman), requesting a report-back on measures to better enforce the City’s longstanding restriction on gas-powered leaf blowers within 500 ft. of residences, as well as development of an educational program and outreach to residents, landscapers and gardeners with information about the current regulations, the environmental impact and available rebate and trade-in programs.

12.   Adjournment.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:40PM.

Return to 2024 Minutes