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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Michael Soneff, Chris Spitz, Cathy Russell, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Reza Akef, Peter Culhane, Rick McGeagh, Danielle Samulon, Richard Blumenberg, Richard Wulliger, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, David Card, Gilbert Dembo

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick, David Peterson

Non-Voting Advisors and Alternates:  Bruce Schwartz, Kevin Niles, Leah Cox, Doria Anselmo, Carol Bruch, Matthew Rodman

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order and certified that a quorum was present at 7:02 pm.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Sue Kohl read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Maryam approved the minutes of November 10, 2016 and December 8, 2016 . 2) Upcoming meetings: 1/26/17. Caruso representatives re Village project update (tentatively expected to attend on 2/23/17); Cori Cross, MD & Jill Piscatella on the topic of early exposure to marijuana by high school aged youth and how to act to avoid having pot shops around our schools. 2/09/17. Shell Station owner/developer (Kohanoff); tentative discussions on the table for a Candidates forum for City Council District 11 Candidates.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.   Maryam (in the Treasurer’s absence) reported that PPCC has $39,427.66 COH, and there were no significant transactions in the last month (except for Gala expenses)The Gala generated net proceeds of $6,218.00, with some payments still outstanding. The Chair suggested a future conversation on what can be done with the money to benefit the community.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Caruso Village Project update.  Maryam Zar summarized a report on the Project from Caruso representative Michael Gazzano:

-Rain has prohibited them from working quite a bit the past couple weeks. They have rain delays assumed in the project schedule and there won’t be impacts to the grand opening date. They cannot excavate and haul on rainy days, which can apparently extend into the following day pending conditions onsite and at Potrero.

-No complaints from residents recently.

-The contractor has done a good job maintaining dust as best as possible. They are also reaching the more moist soil which helps mitigate dust.

-Pending weather, they are hoping to do some re-striping on Sunset Blvd next week. Nothing major, just adding some striping near our k-rail as required by LADOT.

7.1.2.    New Committee forming – PaliWorks CommitteeDeferred to 1/26.

7.1.3.    Theatre Palisades has a show opening this Friday, “Picnic.”  Please go to their website and buy tickets. (

7.1.4.    Pacific Palisades Park Advisory Board public meeting,  1/18/17, 7pm.

PPCC organizational representative Rick McGeagh is a PAB member and will be there. Maryam will attend to present an idea about having the center circle, now devoid of trees, turn into a community garden or green space of sorts.7.1.5. Shell station — update on DRB meeting 1/11/17. Maryam reported that the DRB approved the design portions. PPCC will hear from the owner/developer and discuss the conditional use issue on 2/9. This includes (a) hours of operation and (b) the sale of alcohol. Stuart Muller reported that the DRB had also considered and opined on use issues.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice Chair).

1) There will be an FAA hearing re flight path changes on 1/25/17, 5pm at Pali High, Mercer Hall; 2) update on home illegally constructeed on the corner of Brooktree & Greentree (Beglari): The house is now in foreclosure and owned by the bank.

7.2.2.    Chris Spitz (Chair Emeritus).

Updates: 1) Starbucks will no longer be pursuing the Evenings Program. It has been confirmed to us that the Program (beer and wine sales) will no longer be pursued at the Palisades Village store. 2) ADUs Ordinance (Granny flats in residential zones). Under a new state law, the city is required to permit ADUs, although the city can regulate them. The State law entirely controls the regulation until LA City passes its own rules. ADUs will remain illegal in hillside zones except for some exceptions, if the new city ordinance passes.  3) Sidewalk vending ordinance: PPCC has taken a position against legalization of sidewalk vending but urging that if legalization is to occur, it must be on an “opt-in” basis only. The Palisades BID and the Chamber of Commerce have taken similar positions. The City Council Public Works Committee is going forward with research on an ordinance NOT on an opt-in basis. CM Bonin has stated that he would support an opt-in system, but it appears that other Council members disagree. Some are concerned that undocumented immigrants could be deported for illegal sidewalk vending. We have been told to expect the matter to be heard soon in the full City Council.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Representatives.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large) – Recent meetings & PaliWorks Committee. Deferred to 1/26.

7.3.3.    Peter Culhane (Area 2) – Highlands & streets.

Peter reported that when residents in the Highlands dump furniture, it gets taken into the canyons by homeless people. Peter will be talking to CD11 about water run-off and encumbered gullies that are backing up. He will report again with an update.

7.3.4.    Sue Kohl (Area 5) – Area 5 & crime.

1) Sue reported that she had a couple of calls from neighbors who reported that burglars have attempted to break into homes. In both cases alarm systems went off and prevented entry. 2) Sue is working on a permit parking system around the Alphabet streets. Most of the residents in the Alphabets don’t particularly care about permit parking, but said they would be open to it if they are affected by project parking. A few streets (Embury, Monument, Via De La Paz, Albright and Bashford (corner) residents on these nearby streets are most concerned, and would have to sign necessary petitions. 75% of residents have to sign petitions in order for a restricted parking district to be approved by the city. Mike Bonin’s office has agreed to help go door to door. There would be no parking without a permit at night. Homes can get passes for guests and short term guests. Getting the permit requires going to the city. Audience suggestion: Wait and see what the fallout is. We are going to have a domino effect. Sue: The city was in favor of starting now. Lou Kamer noted that there have been long-term problems there. Rick Lemmo: New tenants are required to park in the building as a condition of their lease.

7.3.5.    Doug McCormick (Area 1 Alternate).

1) Doug attended a DONE meeting in Dec. on homelessness; PPCC is the only council to create a task force to deal with the problem. All of the homeless committee coordinators for all the 96 neighborhood council liaisons met. Few of them had a substantive plan for action. There are going to be monthly meetings. 2) There will be a PPTFH community meeting with Supervising Judge Michael Levanas on 1/23/17, 7pm at Palisades branch library; the subject is ‘service resistant’ homeless people. 3) The Palisades Homeless Count will take place on1/26/17, 5am at Pali High, Mercer Hall; sign up at The Count will substantiate HUD federal grants for housing and services.

7.3.6.    Reza Akef (Area 8).

1) Reza reported that there was a very productive meeting today coordinated by Sharon Shapiro of CD11 on the new LA Genesis Open to take place in February, sponsored by the new host organization, the Tiger Woods Foundation. Foundation representative Dave Klewan attended and all went well. 2) The Polo Fields community recently hired a security company to patrol parking and pickup at the end of school hours. The cost is $30/month to enforce no parking on Allenford. Maryam noted that all four LAUSD District 4 candidates will be at a candidates forum on February 2 at Paul Revere from 7pm-9pm.

7.4.    From Organizational Representatives.

7.4.1.    Rick Lemmo (Chamber of Commerce).  Rick reported that the Chamber will hold its annual Installation dinner at Riviera Country Club on January 19. The next speaker series event will be on March 25.

7.4.2.    Richard Blumenberg (Civic League).

Richard gave an update on the BMO/BHO and R1 Variation Zones Code Amendments. He reported that R1 zones are losing 25-30% of allowed square footage of construction. There are ratio changes. Bonus options are eliminated and there are limits on maximum grading. The Amendments also establish an encroachment plane from the setback line. Other changes: Sidewall articulation; limits driveway width.; eliminates the exemption for certain spaces; eliminates the exemption for green buildings; front facing attached garages will lose 200 sq. ft; changed the exemption for grading on hillside properties to count that grading under the house structure. The Amendments have been heard and approved by the City Planning Commission, were approved by the PLUM Committee, and were approved with modifications by the City Council on December, 7 2016.

Audience member Cheryl Zomber stated that she found an element of confusion about who Richard Blumenberg was speaking on behalf of and questioned his potential conflict of interest.  It was clarified that Richard was speaking on behalf of the Civic League. Maryam asked Zomber to address Board members with a more collegial and less menacing tone

7.4.3.    Barbara Marinacci (Palisades Beautiful) – NEXT Garden.  Deferred to 1/26.

7.4.4.    Bruce (Palisades PRIDE).  Bruce attended the recent WRAC LUPC (Westside Regional Alliance of Neighborhood and Community Councils Land Use Planning Committee) meeting, which included a briefing by LA Homeless Services Joint Powers Authority Homelessness. He reported that it will take 50 years at this rate to get enough housing.

7.4.5.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA).  Rick reported that there is a new tennis operator and other improvements at the park. Meetings will be taking place and the 21st and 22nd are the new deadlines to sign up. David Card noted that Rustic Canyon also has tennis courts that have been rehabilitated and the tennis shed is going to be rebuilt.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”) – Officer Edna Veloz, #39585,West Los Angeles Community Relations Office.

Officer Veloz has been with the Los Angeles Police Department for approximately 8 1/2 years. She’s been assigned to different details such as: Patrol Officer, Parole Compliance Unit Officer, Vice Investigative Officer and the West Los Angeles Community Relations Office working as an acting Senior Lead Officer (when Senior Leads are on vacation) and a Youth Service Officer. Officer Veloz update: Prowling/burglaries in the area. There were 4 “hot prowls.” A hot prowl is when someone comes inside the house when someone is home. Entries were through unlocked sliding glass doors. Two suspects were arrested in the Asilomar case. Her advice is to set home alarms and invest in doorbell replacements. 2015: 9 robberies, 11 in 2016. 2015: 28 aggravated assaults. 25 in 2016. 99 burglaries. Grand theft auto 2015: 18, 2016: 36. Thefts; 128 in 2015, 111 in 2016. An audience member thanked Maryam, the PPCC and LAPD for dealing with an RV owner who tried to set up in the neighborhood.  Office Veloz reported that Officer Rusty Redican has given out a number of citations on the beach over the last few weeks.  Cathy Russell asked whether signs stating no parking on the beach would be replaced. Sharon Shapiro said that the Council has a work order on file to replace the signs at the beach. The signs are still being enforced along the beach.  Audience question: what constitutes an RV? Can people in the neighborhood park their RVs? Officer Veloz reported that the reason that people are cited is because people are sleeping in them.Carole Bruch asked about families living in cars and RVs. Sharon Shapiro said that LAHSA and LAPD are doing outreach to families who are living in cars and RVs, working to find alternatives. The new 8502 regulations regarding RVs apply to neighborhoods and within 500 feet of sensitive locations. Enforcement will begin in early February.

7.5.2.    Sharon Shapiro – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, Field Deputy.

Sharon thanked the PPCC for its award ceremony. She reported that Rob Hancock, the project engineer on Potrero Canyon, is retiring and was honored by CM Bonin at a ceremony which some community members attended this week at the City Council meeting downtown. Pedro Garcia is the new project manager for the Potrero project. On street vending: CM Bonin wants to see an opt-in system. Not all of the other councilmembers agree, some want an opt-out system. It will be heard at the City Council on January 18. Maryam asked about the opt-out mechanism. Sharon noted that CM Buscaino has proposed rules. Those details have not yet been ironed out. Sharon said that as part of the proposed ordinance, vendors have to apply for a permit, and as part of the permit process street vendors have to agree to maintain the area. Maryam announced that to hear what happens, there is a call in number for the City Council. Chris Spitz asked Sharon to confirm that there is no draft ordinance as of now; Sharon confirmed that was the case. What percentage of nearby business owners will have to opt in or out? Will public comment be allowed at the City Council level? Sharon said she would find out. The legal requirement of notification is 72 hours notice. Regarding road repairs due to the rain – the city is sending street services out to repair large scale pot holes as quickly as possible. The problem is that when it’s wet, asphalt won’t adhere to the pothole, which means that the patch won’t take.

7.5.3.    Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, Field Deputy – Not present.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors — None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.     PPCC LUC (Howard Robinson, Chair) – Not present.

9.    General Public Comment.

Marge Gold expressed concern about the Caruso billboards on Sunset and stated that she believes they conflict with the Specific Plan. Maryam noted that the signs may be allowed under the MND. Cathy Russell said that the Subway flags may also violate the Specific Plan. Stuart Muller says that people need to file a complaint, rather than go to the DRB. Daphne Gronich said that the light-up monument sign at the Shell station is an issue. Maryam noted that they are going to try to put a dimmer on it.

10.    Old Business — None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Tiger Woods Foundation/Genesis Open Golf Tournament.

Dave Klewan, General Manager of the Open, reported that only organizers have multiple events on the tour. The Foundation intends to engage and be respectful of the community. They sponsor STEM youth programs. They are also working closely with the local Chamber. The Tiger Woods Foundation has a 10 year deal to manage the tournament.

11.2.    Sharon Commins on Re:code LA and other Planning and Land Use Topics.

Sharon is co-chair of the re:code LA Citizens Advisory Committee; co-chair of WRAC LUPC; and past chair, Mar Vista CC. She noted that the next guest speaker at WRAC- LUPC will be Tom Rothmann of the Planning Dept. The recode: LA Citizens Advisory Committee meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month from 6-8 pm at City Hall; parking can be arranged. re:code LA is not ReZone LA. The city is combining the zoning code with the phantom building code and the zoning administrator interpretations. All these codes will be combined in a web-based code. You should be able to punch in your address and see everything that’s relevant to the zoning. The use lists are up online. Context is the identity of the community: urban vs suburban. For more detail, refer to the spring 2016 slide presentation that’s up online. The ReCode website is Rezoning only happens when the land is mapped per state law. Cities have to provide a list of properties. On LA City’s website there is a list of every property in the city that can accommodate more growth. Governor Brown’s budget-housing will be a centerpiece of that. There will not be a lot of affordable housing money. Focus is on infill growth. The California Strategic Growth Council gives out the money from cap and trade. OPR implements state bill 743. Code amendment is moving through the system. It’s important that the community is very attentive and vocal during new development. There has been a YIMBY movement that is pro-density and urbanist. There is disdain for single family homes. Abundant Housing LA is an advocacy group on the Westside that is pro-density. The argument is that gentrification is happening in other neighborhoods because of a lack of density on the Westside. WRAC members can take whatever position they want on Preserve LA. ReCode is an easy political football. Reza noted that there are discrepancies in requirements for development, and there is a great deal of discretion in the Code. There would be a point system put in place, so that developers could pick and choose things that they would want to put in to meet requirements.

The Granny Flats ordinance would allow increased density.

12.    Adjournment.   Maryam adjourned the meeting.  [Note:  adjournment time not recorded.]


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Richard Cohen, Sue Kohl, Peter Culhane, David Kaplan, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, David Card, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Danielle Samulon, Cathy Russell, Lou Kamer, Rick McGeagh, Gilbert Dembo

Voting Alternates:  Susan Payne, Kelly Comras, Barbara Kohn

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  David Peterson, Doria Anselmo, Andy Frew, Quentin Fleming, Matthew Rodman, Ron Dean, Leah Cox, Carol Bruch

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7: 04pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Maryam read the Mission Statement.

3.     Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The Board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Maryam approved the minutes of January 12, 2017 as corrected.  2) Upcoming meetings: 2/9/17. Shell Station owner/developer (Kohanoff); tentative discussions on the table for a Candidates forum for City Council District 11 Candidates. 2/23/17. Caruso Village Project construction update (tentative),

5.     Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam reported that the agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that we have a bank balance of $39,873.66. We are getting close to a final tally on the Gala. The dinner lost $429, but the tribute book and auction brought in $7,147, for net proceeds of about $6718 to date.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.     Announcement of New EC members.

Maryam announced that two Executive Committee members have been approved by the officers. They are David Kaplan (area/elected representative; retaining his prior EC membership) and Susan Payne (organizational representative). The other members of the Executive Committee are the four officers and the Chair/President Emeritus. The appointments were pursuant to the PPCC Bylaws, Art. V.3.A.

7.1.2.    Caruso Village Project Construction Signage.

Maryam stated that the signage was being questioned by some and has been brought to the attention of Caruso and City officials. The City has said that a complaint must be brought to LADBS. This is not an action item for today. We have investigated and learned that Caruso believes the signage is within its rights. David Kaplan: He spoke with Michael Gazzano of Caruso, who has had conversations with a few others who have brought this to Caruso’s attention. They attempted to come to a satisfactory conclusion with those who are complaining but were unable to do so. At this point Caruso believes the construction signage is permitted under the MND for the project. David Peterson: Many people are in favor of the signage. David Kaplan: He was told that some people are complaining and others think the signage is fine. Peter Culhane: This is temporary; the construction signs will be gone in a year or so. Lou Kamer: He has spoken with some in support and some who have issues. One of the solutions may be that Caruso would alter the signs the next time they are updated, to show new tenants; this could be done in conjunction with the community, for example, schools might have contests for art to be selected so the signs would not just be promotion for the company but a link to the community. They are looking for a solution. David Kaplan: Michael Gazzano told him that these possibilities were discussed but have not been satisfactory thus far to those complaining; there is no agreement at this point in time. Susan Payne: How many are complaining? Maryam: We don’t know if it is more than a small number. Stuart Muller: Stuart announced that he has been appointed by the DRB to head up signage for the DRB; he invited community members to talk to him about any sign issues.

7.1.3.    PPCC fundraising and possibilities for using funds to support the community.

Maryam explained that we have been raising money for the last few years; the Gala has been the principal fundraising mechanism. She has been considering a spring community gathering/fundraiser. Maryam asked for everyone on the board to think about what we want to do if we start to raise more money. She stated that we might want to support other community organizations with monetary awards and believes this is within our bylaws. We will have board discussion about this at a future meeting.

7.1.4.    Palisades Recreation Center Park Advisory Board public meeting.

Maryam attended to present an idea for a community garden in the center circle. She was told that this area would likely be used for a parking lot in the future, so it would probably not be a good location. The PAB liked the idea for a community garden and suggested the possibility of using an area around the Bocce courts. The idea has been introduced.

7.1.5.     Shell station – clarifying issues on the table at PPCC.  Maryam stated that we are taking up this matter at our Feb. 9 meeting. The DRB has concluded its review and submitted findings. The PPCC board will now take up only two things: 1) hours of operation and 2) alcohol sales. We will not consider anything else.

7.1.6.    PPTFH Meeting Recap.

Maryam advised that the Homeless Count occurred this morning and went well. There are fewer homeless than last year. The Count was very well organized, there were no glitches and it was the 3rd count completed. PPTFH has met with OPCC for a one-year review and the results have been great; OPCC has engaged many people. Thirty were taken off the streets and more than a dozen have been housed. Sue Kohl: Where are the people who were not housed or taken off streets? Maryam: Many are transients; the OPCC team has engaged more than 90, who as a result are not free agents any longer; the team is conversing with them and some are accepting some form of service. The intermediate goal is to engage with the homeless and keep tabs on them.

7.1.7.    Naming de facto Co-Chairs of Communications Committee, Chris Spitz/Maryam Zar, and call for volunteers.  Maryam and Chris described the tasks that they have been handling, including social media, email and website postings, and asked for volunteers.

7.1.8.    West LA VA Neighbors Community Roundtable.  Maryam explained that we had a representative there who reported back that all was well. Janet Turner of Congressman Lieu’s office will report further.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair Emeritus) – WRAC Officer update.  Chris announced that Maryam has been elected by the leadership of the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils (WRAC) as Vice-Chair of WRAC. Chris and Maryam both reported that the WRAC leadership has praised PPCC for its important work on issues affecting not only the Palisades but the entire Westside of Los Angeles.

7.2.2.    Richard Cohen (Treasurer) re C-PAB.

He attended the meeting this week with our local LAPD Captain Tina Nieto. She reported that everyday there are protests at the Federal Building, which are taking away lots of resources; most SLOs are being pulled out for that duty. The Captain explained that handling of protests is not what it used to be; police meet with organizers in advance regarding who will be arrested and when, then they engage in arrests politely. If there is struggling, it is played for the camera. LAPD policy is not to play to the camera. The Captain says that crime is down substantially, but this may be due to heavy rains.   She commented on Councilman Bonin’s plan to put more police on the streets: sworn officers would be pulled off desk duty and put on special teams. The problem is that 20% of LAPD officers are on medical light duty at any time, that’s why they’re on desk duty. She is not sure what will happen with this.

7.2.3.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair).

Yesterday the City installed a bus bench on Entrada at Stassi Lane. He thanked Debbie Dyner Harris of CD11 and the project manager, Ferdy Chan. Regarding the FAA /workshop at Palisades High School: Many federal employees were in the room, along with representatives of Congressman Lieu, Councilman Bonin and more. The FAA representatives showed the attendees what the new NextGen plan is. The plan will start rolling out in April. Under the plan the airplanes will go by GPS rather than radar. There was discussion about the methods to be used to reduce airplane noise.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps — All reports deferred (except for reports regarding downed trees, which were discussed during Item 7.5.2).

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce) – Deferred.

7.4.2.    Barbara Marinacci (Palisades Beautiful) – Deferred.

7.4.3.    David Card (Rotary Club).  David gave information about the Rustic Canyon Recreation Center Kids Night Out & Galentines Day for Women, both events on Feb. 11, 2017 at Rustic Canyon.

7.4.4.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA) – Deferred.

7.4.5.    Sarah Conner (PPRA) — Not present; deferred.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”) – Not present.

7.5.2.    Sharon Shapiro – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, Field Deputy.

Sharon reported that many people volunteered at the Homeless Count; she thanked everyone who was there. The numbers are down overall. On behalf of Councilman Bonin she congratulated the new Chamber Chair Susan Payne and new Chamber board; she also thanked Adam Glazer for serving two terms as Chamber Chair. Regarding Mike’s introduction of a new police plan: there are a number of able-bodied sworn officers taking desk positions and he is asking for LAPD to look at the system similar to the system used by LAFD. She will send additional information. Regarding Sidewalk Vending: This will be heard on Jan. 31. What is being considered is a framework for a policy going forward, not an actual ordinance, which has not yet been drafted. The Entrada sidewalk project has been delayed due to rains; it will start again soon and they will be working overtime. She noted that there have been questions regarding LAMC sec. 85.02, the Code section dealing with vehicular dwelling. This is tied to zoning. There is no ability to live in a vehicle within 500 ft. of sensitive uses. There is no vehicle dwelling between 9pm-6am in residential zones. A map has been released but may not be entirely accurate. Mike is asking the City Attorney to look at use as well as zoning. The map will be changing. Danielle Samulon: There are downed trees in Area 3; this is unsafe; is there a timetable to remove them? Sharon: The City is swamped with many similar situations; there are very few emergency crews; her office will try to get Urban Forestry out. The priority is to make the lane passable. Sue Kohl: Many trees came down in Area 5 as well. Trees aren’t trimmed regularly. Sharon: The City only has resources for emergency situations. Mike does want proactive trimming; she assured us that we will get more trimming before the end of March. David Card: More trees have fallen on Bienveneda, and he asked for a warning light. Barbara Kohn: Regarding the map that will be changing, what will be changing exactly? Sharon: Some streets are coded incorrectly; she can’t say offhand which ones. Some are near sensitive uses that were not coded accurately. Chris Spitz: Residents are concerned about enforcement issues going forward. Maryam: PPCC will take this up on Feb. 23rd with SLO Michael Moore. Neighborhood Prosecutor Veronica de la Cruz Robles: She advised that enforcement is not tied to the map, which is illustrative only, but is based on the language of the Code itself. LAPD officers can decide on scene as to whether the activity is allowed.

7.5.3.    Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, Field Deputy.

The Congressman is sponsoring an art competition for high school students; they have until early April to submit applications. The 1st place winner will receive a trip to Washington, D.C. and their artwork will be exhibited in the Capitol. Each year there is a bipartisan Service Academy Day. This year it is on Feb. 12 from 1-4pm at LA Air Force Base, 400 N. Douglas St. El Segundo. Regarding the FAA matter: Congressman Lieu is a member of the Congressional Quiet Skies Coalition and supports efforts to keep airplane noise to a minimum. Regarding the WLA VA Neighbors Community Roundtable: The Master plan called for a Community Veteran Engagement board. The Board has been elected and will create a WLA campus subcommittee. Community members can apply to be on the subcommittee. The 1st town hall to introduce this will be in late Feb. or early March. Regarding the Brentwood dog park: half of the park is going away because the City is creating another dog park about ½ mile away at Westwood Recreation Center. The other half will stay in Brentwood.

7.5.4.    Veronica de la Cruz Robles – Office of the City Attorney, Mike Feuer.  Veronica reported that she continues to work with the Task Force on Homelessness. As our Neighborhood Prosecutor, Veronica also explained highlights of the marijuana law (see Item 11.1 below).

7.5.5.    Daniel Tamm — Officer of Mayor Eric Garcetti.

Daniel gave remarks on the Mayor’s Office of Public Engagement. He explained that the purpose of the Office is to bring City Hall to the neighborhoods. The Mayor is happy to come to events in the Palisades and wants to do a better job at dialogue with communities. Daniel gave some examples of the Mayor’s engagement. George Wolfberg: Is the 311 number active 24 hours a day? Daniel: No. This is a problem, for example, for people who may have their car towed mistakenly after 10pm and the signage directs people to call 311. Daniel said that he will put this in his report to the Mayor.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees — None.

9.    General Public Comment.   

Joe of Bryan’s Smile. This is a drug prevention program, which educates youth ages 10-18 and families on drug dangers. They attempt to open up lines of communication and have done work at Paul Revere and other area schools.

10.    Old Business — None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.     Potential impact of marijuana and/or marijuana laws on our area schools and teens.

Presenting: Cori Cross, MD & Jill Piscatella, along with Veronica de la Cruz Robles. Veronica: Prop 64 passed and will become effective Nov. 9. As of Nov. 9 smoking marijuana in public places by persons over 21 is allowed and is not a crime; it is allowed anywhere smoking is allowed. It is not a crime to smoke in public. Under 18: it’s an infraction. If between 18-20: an infraction and not a misdemeanor. The law allows marijuana possession up to 1 oz. by persons 21 and over, and it is legal under certain conditions. Persons can cultivate up to 6 plants under certain conditions in private residences. Sue Kohl: How will this be enforced around schools? Veronica: There are laws prohibiting possession around schools. She explained the rules and penalties for various offenses, and stressed that marijuana is not the same as yesteryear; it is much stronger and parents should be aware for our kids. It is no longer a felony to sell on school grounds.   Maryam: Is it practical for us to ask for more support for this issue from LAPD, since it is a misdemeanor only? Veronica: LAPD can still move forward with a misdemeanor. Also, it can still be a felony if large quantities are offered for sale rather than personal use. Carol Bruch: How is marijuana different now? Veronica: It is stronger. Lou Kamer: At what point will the City be thinking about new dispensaries or shops opening? Veronica: There are still officers working on illegal pot shops and there are special marijuana prosecutors who are working on illegal dispensaries under Prop D. They are using zoning laws. There are no locations in the Palisades under Prop D. Dick Wulliger: How will this be handled vis a vis the federal government? Veronica: The City recognizes it is a federal offense but has to also recognize that Prop 64 has passed. The federal government will take care of larger grower issues. Audience (Allison Holdorf Polhill): Pali High has an officer on the grounds who can take action if there is information that a child has drugs or a sale is going on. People need to speak up.

Dr. Corrine Cross: She is a pediatrician at Children’s Hospital LA. Jill Piscatella is Senior VP of a youth education foundation for the DEA in Washington, D.C. Dr. Cross: She explained that pot now has a much higher THC level. It is a completely different drug than yesteryear. She is worried about children who may be chronic users. Developing brains are different from adult brains. The consequences of higher TCH levels include: clinical depression and bipolar disease as children grow older. She cited specifics and statistics regarding the impact of marijuana use. The studies show very negative effects on intellectual function as a result of chronic use. There are drops in the average IQ levels, which are not reversible in children. Dr. Cross advocates for a strong safe zone around schools, with a 1-mile distance prohibition for pot shops.

David Peterson: Is the federal government enforcing federal law in Colorado and other sates where marijuana has been legalized? Jill Piscatella: They are focusing on trying to shut down bigger operations. Veronica: There are consequences for driving under the influence, including the same penalties as with alcohol, although there is currently no reliable test of TCH levels. David Kaplan: Right now pot shops are prohibited 1000 ft. from schools; is our commercial area subject to having pot shops? Veronica discussed Prop D and its interface with the new law.

Reza Akef: Wants to be fair and balanced. A discussion ensued about hazards, use, zoning, Prop D, etc. Gil Dembo: Wants Mike Bonin to bring to City Council a measure to regulate this and impose a 1-mile distance from schools. Maryam: This was agendized only as a discussion item. Quentin Fleming: There is imaging showing brain development until the mid – late twenties. Richard Cohen read from Prop 64 and explained that the new law already imposes a 600 ft. limitation from schools and other sensitive locations. He also read other provisions of the law for education, drug treatment programs and the like, and reminded everyone that the voters of the state have spoken.   Audience member: Some young people were in the audience and left before this discussion began; this should have been discussed earlier. Pali High student Griffin: He wishes greater emphasis can be placed on education programs. His friends don’t know about the things that chronic marijuana use can lead to. Dr. Cross: The problem is funding education programs. It all comes down to parents. Audience (Daphne Gronich): This is an issue for the Chamber and BID; store owners don’t have to rent to pot shops. Veronica: Her office has a tobacco unit with one prosecutor; maybe this can expand with marijuana. Barbara Kohn asked a question about licensing. Veronica: There will probably be new regulations. Audience: Question asked about other elements in marijuana; what is the other beneficial compound? Dr. Cross: CDD (the “good” compound) is being engineered out to create higher TCH levels. Davd Kaplan: We should do what we can to keep pot shops from opening up here. Rick McGeagh: Some of his private clients in commercial real estate are now inquiring about the possibility of getting higher rents from pot shop tenants. His institutional clients aren’t interested. Property owners in the Palisades might listen to us.

12.     Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:03pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Richard Cohen, Michael Soneff, Chris Spitz, Reza Akef, Peter Culhane, Lou Kamer, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, David Card, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Richard Blumenberg, Sarah Conner, Rick Lemmo

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick, Janet Anderson, Ted Mackie

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Amir Ebtehadj, Andy Frew, Kevin Niles, David Peterson, Carol Bruch, Doria Anselmo, Quentin Fleming, Matthew Rodman, Susan Payne

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:01pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Maryam read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Maryam deemed the minutes of January 26, 2017 approved.  2) Upcoming Meetings: 2/23/17. Vehicle Dwelling Ordinance discussion.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  The Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that the PPCC has a balance of $39,762.16.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Announcement regarding CD11 Candidates Forum.

Maryam explained that as WRAC Co-Chair she organized a neutral forum sponsored by WRAC for all the candidates to attend on February 27th at Windward School, a date which was believed to be originally acceptable to all the candidates. One challenger is withholding his confirmation and the other reneged after previously committing to attend the 2/27 WRAC forum. Another forum was organized by PPRA for 2/16 but not all candidates are expected to attend. Maryam advised that she will let the public know the status of the WRAC-sponsored forum and whether it is going forward in the near future.

7.1.2.    Caruso Village Project construction signage.  Maryam stated that Michael Gazzano of Caruso is present and will report on the status later in the meeting.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus) – WRAC LUPC update.

Chris explained that she and George Wolfberg are the PPCC representatives to this committee, which discusses land use matters pertinent to the Westside and at times recommends motions to the WRAC leadership. They attended the meeting last Sunday. Three motions were recommended to leadership, including one calling for figures as to population density and another calling for maximum build out numbers. The third motion involved a proposed Safe Parking Pilot Program, which is still in committee and has not yet been implemented. The committee is recommending to WRAC leadership that government properties be considered for this use. Chris and George raised a concern about overnight vehicle dwelling in beach parking lots. The committee did pass a motion which was believed to address this concern, however, Chris believes the language of the recommended motion may not be amenable to the PPCC. Maryam will address this with leadership. On short-term rentals: Chris reported that the home sharing ordinance has been drafted and will be heard soon in the PLUM committee. The ordinance includes a 180 day annual cap on short-term rentals; PPCC has called for a 30 day cap; other groups are asking for 60 days.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Peter Culhane (Area 2).  Peter stated that he had nothing new to report.

7.3.3.    Reza Akef (Area 8).  Reza reported that the Genesis Open will take place next weekend. No parking signs will be enforced starting on the 15th until Sunday the 19th.  HOAs have requested no exceptions. Ticketing will be taking place.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Barbara Marinacci (Palisades Beautiful) re NEXT Garden.

Barbara noted that Palisades Beautiful “works like hell” on all the Temescal gardens. She invited the community to come and check them out. The gardens should be beautiful in spring. Rec & Parks invested $60,000 in the garden some years ago. The hours are Tuesday from 3-5 and Saturday from 9-4.

7.4.3.    Janet Anderson (PPBA).

PAB public meeting update (parking). Janet is a member of the PAB, along with Rick McGeagh. She stated that the PAB meets quarterly. At the January meeting there was no update on the canyon, but they are trying to move forward with Bocce ball and parking. There was discussion of a possible community garden in the center island. They are forming a Task Force to discuss a dog park in the area. At Barrington Park there is a dog park, but they are reducing that park to half the size, and relocating one half to Westwood. Sharon Shapiro reported that Patricia Keane of CD11 is meeting with people on park-related issues.

7.4.4.    Sarah Conner (PPRA).

Measure S & overnight parking. Sarah reported that PPRA is working to support Measure S. She asked the community to research the issue. The PPRA board has expressed dissatisfaction with having stripes on different streets in the Palisades and residential parking. Sarah also announced that there will be a Candidates forum on February 16 sponsored by PPRA at University Synagogue in Brentwood from 7-9 pm. Registration required on Eventbrite. Sarah first stated that all three candidates would attend, but this statement was later corrected by CD11 Deputy Sharon Shapiro (see item 7.5.2 below).

7.4.5.   David Card (Rotary Club).

David reminded the board of the Galentine’s Day and Kids Night Out events at Rustic Canyon on Saturday February 11. He also reported that Randy Young recently visited the Rotary Club to give a presentation on the history of the Palisades.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”) – Not present.

7.5.2.    Sharon Shapiro – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, Field Deputy.

Prop O update: The work is moving along. The lane closure work is done and they are restriping that area. To lessen the impact, they will restripe on Saturday the 18th. The project is on track for the fall of next year (target November 2017). Right now they have nearly completed the building that will enclose the storm water treatment, and the pipe work is substantially completed. The lane should be reopened by the end of the month. Regarding the new vehicle dwelling rules: City Planning decided which streets to allow or not allow at night. The decision was based on zoning and the location of sensitive uses. Maryam: Veronica de la Cruz Robles from the City Attorney’s office will be here at the next meeting to answer questions; we will also have an LAPD detail to explain enforcement. Sharon noted that the population of people living in their vehicles is decreasing because of a month of outreach done by LAPD and LAHSA. There will be no new signage to go along with the new parking rules. Reza: Asked about potential mudslides and locations of concern. Sharon asked Reza to send the locations to her directly. Regarding the candidates forum: Sharon stated that organizers of the forum on the 16th were informed that the Councilmember would not attend and that the only such event that the Councilmember has confirmed to attend is the WRAC forum on the 27th.

7.5.3.    Lila Kalaf – Office of State Senator Ben Allen.

Lila noted that the new legislative session started last month. Senator Allen is the chair of the Education committee, Environmental Caucus. This includes environmental protection, transportation, arts education, and quality education. The deadline for new legislation is February 17th. The infrastructure package includes a statewide housing bond to increase funding for existing affordable housing programs.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors.

7.6.1.    Youth – Amir Ebtehadj.

Amir thanked Caruso for the security guard on Temescal. He announced various upcoming school events: Pali Elementary will have Jump Rope for Heart event on Valentine’s Day, featuring the Harlem Globetrotters. The Pali Elementary Founders Day event is on 2/13. Canyon Charter School is having a talent show. There is also a Pali High Story Corps event (called Human Kind) by the Drama Department, encouraging local Palisadians to come talk about their lives, which will be translated into skits.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    VPCLC – David Kaplan & Sue Kohl, Co-Chairs.

Michael Gazzano presented an update on the project in place of the Co-Chairs. He showed slides of the progress and hauling to date. He explained that the project hauling has been slightly delayed by heavy rains. There is dust mitigation with water trucks. Crossing guards are present at three intersections. Caruso has also hired three LADOT officers to help guide traffic. There is no exact date when hauling will end but it is expected by the end of March. Regarding the temporary safety barricades (incorrectly referred to by some as construction signage): The concern expressed by some residents to Michael is the use of the Caruso logo six times around the perimeter of the project. He has discussed the matter with those who have expressed concerns to attempt to address any problems. Michael has heard a rumor that an appeal or complaint may have been filed with the city challenging the legality of the barricades, but he has not received an actual notice of this appeal/complaint. Michael explained that the existing graphics will eventually be changed out with new tenants’ ads. The use of historical photos of the Palisades is also being considered. Michael showed examples of possible new graphics depicting photos of the Bay Theatre and Swarthmore in the 1950s or 60s, juxtaposed with renderings of the Caruso project plans. Another idea that Caruso is considering is holding a community drawing contest for Palisades schoolchildren, with the winning drawings to be displayed on the barricades and donations by Caruso to the winners’ schools. He showed a possible example of this graphic as well. Maryam invited Michael back to give updates in March & April.

9.    General Public Comment – None.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Shell Station – latest filings and community discussion.

Michael Kohanoff, one of the Shell station partners, and Neil Brower, Esq., part of the entitlement team, report that they have continued to meet with neighbors and the DRB. The DRB recommended approval of the design of the building. The station owners have further limited hours of operation. The building has changed mostly in design, with a slightly decreased square footage. It is about 900 sq. feet inside. Trash enclosures are now internal to the building. The only alcohol sold will be beer and wine, and the hours have been constrained. Two of the refrigerator units will be locked, and accessible only to the attendant. The owners are willing to discuss the hours. All purchaser IDs will be swiped.

Richard Finkel, the architect, discussed some of the minor changes. They will demolish the existing building, allowing more maneuvering on the property. The driveway will be at the back of the project. Pumps and tanks will be left in place. The project is now lower and is more modern, consistent with design feedback from the DRB. Site runoff will be collected and treated. Restrooms will be key-operated. The entire square footage is 2,750, with 915 being retail space. Maryam reiterated that the DRB has recommended approval of this project. The CUP application has been distributed, along with a memo from Ron Dean expressing his opinion. Maryam asked for the design plans to be provided so that they can be distributed to the public. David Kaplan asked about ingress and egress from the driveways onto Via. (No response noted.)

Maryam then directed the discussion to the hours of operation. She explained that the station owners have asked for extended hours. The hours being requested are 5 am – midnight. A required finding is that the service being offered is essential or beneficial to the community. Maryam asked what about the service is essential or beneficial? Saeed Kohanoff said that the community wants the service even beyond the requested hours. He noted that many people need gasoline early in the morning or late at night. Police and security companies congregated at the Mobil station that he formerly owned in order to take a coffee break. Maryam noted that security isn’t noted in the application. Would they consider a security person within certain hours? Saeed Kohanoff replied that they have closed circuit cameras, but that they never had any crime issues at the Mobil station. He also noted that they would be open to trying a security officer within certain hours.

Maryam then noted that the Specific Plan asks that the building be compatible within the area, or that incompatibility is mitigated, and that the project fits in with the commercial area. Saeed Kohanoff said that someone suggested an alarm or security light when exiting the easement in the back. Mr. Brower noted that they were well within the requirements of the Specific Plan in square footage, and the building is shorter than the buildings nearby. The use itself is within the base zoning and the additional zoning within the Specific Plan. The store is simply a shift from the previous store down the road. Mr. Finkel noted that there is no significant impact created by the traffic. Gas station traffic is based on the number of pumps. There are no additional pumps than there were before, so there is a negligible traffic impact. Traffic will no longer go around the building. Pumps will not be operational at night. There will be a buffer between the pump islands and the canopy. The building will mitigate sound and light. They are adding lots of landscaping. There will be greenery and brick at the back of the building.

Maryam asked about parking spaces for bicycles. Mr. Finkel: The plan has parking spaces for bikes. It’s not in the application, but there are bike racks. Chris Spitz asked when deliveries will occur. Saeed Kohanoff stated that deliveries will not occur during early morning or evening rush hour periods and will be within the operating hours. David Kaplan wondered if there is a necessity for beer and wine sales. Mr. Brower stated that the community needs gasoline at odd hours. Maryam asked if this is an undue concentration. Mr. Brower stated that moving the operation just down the street is not increasing density. He also said that the station needs to be open at 5 am for convenience of getting coffee or other things for people who must travel early in the morning. Richard Cohen asked about the hours the former Mobil station. Saeed Kohanoff stated that it was open 24 hours but the state law required alcohol sales to stop at 2am. He also stated in response to a question that there is no provision in the design for a bank teller window.

Maryam noted that there was discussion at the DRB about the need for a gas station. Lou Kamer noted that since October there have been 10 incidents of crime within a three-block radius. Saeed Kohanoff replied that his station is not the cause of any additional crime and there were no incidents of crime at the Mobil station. Daphne Gronich (audience) asked about additional lighting at night. Mr. Brower explained that most of the lights would be off when not in operation. The signage itself would not be oriented toward the condos; most lighting would be facing toward Sunset. Most of the light would come from the islands, and those would not change. Marge Gold (audience) said that she cannot see how the proposed hours of operation are essential to the community, and they’re not necessary in the Village. Ted Weitz (audience) stated that there is a convalescent home on the block, as well as a condo building across the alley. This is not the same location as the Mobil station—it is unique. The constant shutting of car doors, engine noise and noise with cars backing out is inevitable at the gas station. He stated his opinion that 7am-11pm are reasonable hours. He noted that the Caruso market will close at 9pm. There is no reason to keep the station open any later than they are allowed by right.

Jill Jones, a resident of the adjacent condo building, noted that they are 25 feet from the Shell station. Windows are close to the building. Residents can look right into the store. Lights will shine into the building. She stated that 11am-11pm operating hours is their right, and is what the community is asking for. Residents would be disturbed by 5am arrivals. The current operations are 6am-11 pm. Lou Kamer asked if there have been complaints about the existing Shell station. Jill noted that there have been complaints that have been addressed, but that extended hours would cause a huge problem. Saeed Kohanoff has been available at several meetings. She feels that he would listen to residents. The Shell station used to be open 24 hours. Michael Kohanoff noted that the original proposal was for 24 hours but they have now reduced the requested hours.

Maryam then turned the discussion to the sale of alcohol. The proposed alcohol sales hours are 10am-11pm. Saeed Kohanoff said they would have any hours where the community feels safe. Stuart Mueller (audience) stated that there is a chicken and egg problem, in that the station was there long before the condos were there. The building has more of an impact than the gas station. Maryam asked if we need another place that sells beer and wine, and if it is in keeping with the community. It was noted that of the 7 locations that will be selling alcohol at the Village project, two are offsite sales. Saeed Kohanoff explained that the Shell station will sell craft or high quality beer and wine only, with six packs and no individual cans or bottles of beer for sale. He also remarked on what he believed was the unfairness of taking away his right to sell alcohol

Maryam asked for the highest rating by volume of alcohol sold. Response: Malt liquor does not fall under beer and wine. The sales will be mostly craft brews and wine. The CUP application lists the maximum volume at 16%. Marge Gold (audience) stated that there is not an entitlement in the Specific Plan for alcohol. An audience member asked about the expected profits from beer and wine sales. Saeed Konaoff said that it varies based on location. Sue Kohl asked about requiring a driver license, and whether someone obviously over 21 will be carded. Saeed Kohnanoff replied that the drivers license must be swiped and anyone without an ID will not be served.

David Kaplan asked if there was a purpose for asking for the additional hour of alcohol sales over what is available at Gelsons. Mr. Brower said that he is amenable to additionally limiting the hours. Maryam asked whether their alcohol sales will adversely affect the community. (No response.) Ted Weitz (audience) remarked that at the last Council meeting there was a presentation about marijuana and the youth impact. 92% of high school seniors report consuming alcohol (NIH). Convenience stores are the easiest places for youth to purchase alcohol. It is close to the high school, near a middle school bus stop, and near the elementary schools. It will become a problem area because of straw sales. Reza Akef stated that it’s not fair to single out the Shell station. Maryam said there are good arguments on both sides. She will agendize this again for further discussion, possibly in March. There is no date yet for the CUP hearing.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:02pm.


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 Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Richard Cohen, George Wolfberg, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Lou Kamer, David Kaplan, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Richard Blumenberg, Sarah Conner, Gil Dembo, Katie Braude, Rick McGeagh.

Voting Alternates:  Kevin Niles, Carol Bruch, Andrew Sacks.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  David Peterson, Brian Deming, Barbara Kohn, Sharon Kilbride, Doug McCormick.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:06pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  George Wolfberg read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Maryam deemed the minutes of February 9, 2017 approved. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 3/9/17. Topics to be announced. 3/23/17. 1) Caruso Village Project report; 2) Shell Station discussion and motion. Carol Bruch asked to raise an additional agenda topic, claiming that the PPCC bylaws had been violated as a result of a letter by Maryam published in the Post in which she was identified as PPCC Chair. Chris Spitz raised a point of order, stating that if a bylaws violation is being claimed, proper process under the bylaws must be followed and that raising such a claim in this public manner was improper. Carol stated that she was raising this issue now on an emergency basis because the letter might be construed as a PPCC endorsement of Mike Bonin in light of the upcoming CD11 election. Maryam explained the circumstances, clarifying that she has not endorsed any candidate and had not written the letter in her capacity as PPCC Chair, having submitted the letter as an editorial to clarify the role of WRAC, and her position on the Exec Committee of both boards. Post Editor John Harlow was present and confirmed that the Post had on its own identified Maryam as PPCC Chair in the published letter. The matter was not pursued further.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $39,818.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Announcement regarding CD11 Candidates Forum.

Maryam stated that the WRAC-sponsored forum will go forward at Windward School in Mar Vista on Feb. 27th at 6:30pm. All three candidates will be present; two will attend in person and one by way of prerecorded responses of the same questions. The event will be live-streamed on the WRAC Facebook page. Further details will be distributed.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair).

George reported that the Santa Monica Canyon Civic Association (SMCCA) board holds monthly public meetings. This month’s meeting, held on the 21st, had an expected briefing from a developer on development in the Canyon Specific Plan Area as well as presentations by two candidates for City Council: Mike Bonin and Robin Rudisill. The other candidate showed up at the January meeting. George noted that these agenda items brought out a room full of attendees and SMCCA actually ran out of chairs—at least 64 people at the Rustic Canyon Recreation Center. Unfortunately, the developer did not have his ducks in a row and the board looks forward to hearing from him in the future. Regarding the Council race, this was announced as not being a debate; the two candidates made presentations and answered questions taking a little over 20 minutes each. The board agreed to share the cost of beach tunnel cleaning with the BOCA neighborhood group and authorized SMCCA’s counsel to enter into a settlement with the FAA regarding flight paths if possible.

7.2.2.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Chris explained that we have learned that Chipotle will be applying in the near future for a CUB to serve alcohol (beer, wine and margaritas) at the Village location. They will present to the board once the application is filed.   Regarding the Temporary Pole Top Distributing Station (TPTDS) at Sunset & Marquez Ave., Chris announced that PPCC has received notice of a hearing of the adjacent property owner’s appeal of issuance of a Coastal Development Permit for the TPTDS. The hearing will take place on March 8, 2017 at 10am before the Board of Public Works at Los Angeles City Hall, 200 N. Spring St., Rm. 350, Los Angeles. Comments or questions can be directed to Catalina Hernandez at 213-485-5756 or Chris noted that PPCC will send out the hearing notice with a meeting recap in the next email blast.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Danielle Samulon (Area 3).

Danielle explained that an issue in Area 3 is the extensive storm debris on Sunset between Arno Way/Bay Club Dr. and Bienveneda. She has been in touch with Sharon Shapiro of CD11 regarding the challenges in cleaning up Sunset. Danielle also reported that a Marquez resident is concerned about the proposed subdivision of a property in Marquez Knolls; MKPOA is concerned as well and has encouraged PPCC to look into the matter. Maryam advised that the PPCC has investigated the issue; she has had several communications with the Council office and a determination was made that the property was large enough to subdivide (10,000 sq. feet). Maryam also explained that there is a question as to how large typical lots are in the Palisades and whether this will set a precedent. Cheryl Zomber (audience) stated that the lot in question was 10,000 sq. feet so that each subdivided lot would be 5,000 sq. feet. She asked that MKPOA be kept in the loop if there are further communications about this issue and Maryam replied that they would be.

7.3.2.    Andrew Sacks (Area 8).

Andrew reported that the Genesis Open Golf Tournament went well this year under the new event organizer, the Tiger Woods Foundation. The residents had a successful pre-event meeting with the Foundation and CD11; there was some negative feedback but most of the feedback since the event took place was very positive; they look forward to a post-tournament meeting as to what went right and what went wrong. Daphne Gronich (audience) advised that the Foundation met in advance with Paul Revere staff and parent leaders; that the event went well in terms of Revere; and that Revere rep, Matt Rodman (also a PPCC Board member), would be included in the post-tournament meeting.

7.3.3.    Lou Kamer (At-Large).  Lou reported that he has been approached by some businesses on both Swarthmore and Sunset who state that business is down overall because of the hauling and Caruso project construction.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA).

Rick announced that the 2nd best day of the year in the Palisades (the first being July 4th) is coming up on March 11 with the annual PPBA Pancake Breakfast and Opening Day ceremonies at the Rec. Center. The Pancake Breakfast is from 7:30-10:30am and Opening ceremonies are at 9:30am. Breakfast tickets are $5 and all proceeds benefit PPBA.

7.4.2.    Sarah Conner (PPRA).

Sarah announced that PPRA hosted a fair debate at the CD11 Candidates Forum on February 16. She explained that PPRA’s mission is education and they did not endorse any candidate. 125 persons attended and the event was successful. The entire debate is posted on the PPRA Facebook page; segments are also posted, broken down by topics.

7.4.3.    Richard Blumenberg (PPCL).

Richard advised that he attended the City Council PLUM Committee meeting on February 14; the Committee passed the R1 Variations for the 25 areas of the city covered by the ICO amendments. Only a few areas are exempt: the ABCs and Huntington. Maps of the areas affected and information showing the restrictions can be found on the Planning or Neighborhood Conservation websites.

7.4.4.    Gil Dembo (TCA).  Gil reported that the connector trail from Temescal to Rivas Canyon has been closed due to mudslides; it is dangerous to use. New wooden stairs were installed in the Leacock Trail for hiker safety.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Michael Moore – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”), SLO.

Officers Matt Kirk (SLO Pico-Robertson area) and Paul Menchaca (West Traffic Division) were present with SLO Moore. Michael reported that the biggest crime issue in the Palisades is stolen vehicles, which are up 300% because of residents leaving their cars unlocked with keys inside. He believes this is most likely because of bush button engine starters. Maryam remarked that she has noticed there are more home break-ins with smashed windows. Is this a trend? Michael answered that it’s possible; this has been going on for the last year. Glass doors are an invitation to smash. There are companies that do window glazing to make it more difficult to break the glass. In 90% of cases if the resident has a noisy alarm system the suspect leaves or only takes items in the immediate area and doesn’t ransack the entire house. Carol Bruch asked if there is a car theft ring. Michael replied that he assumes a group has discovered this area is ripe for picking but we don’t know for sure. Michael also advised that he has a Twitter account: Mike@lapdSLO1. Chris Spitz stated that this has been added to our website.

Officer Menchaca then introduced himself and related that he works at the West Traffic Division in the CTSU, a unit that supports the community with traffic issues such as speeding, failing to obey stop signs, etc. This year LAPD is looking at Vision Zero, which is a goal to reduce vehicle and bicycle accidents by 20%. Residents can call the unit with any traffic issues at 213-473-0215 and speak with Mike Toth; residents should be prepared to give the time and date of the incident when calling. Officer Menchaca also reported that an Officer O’Dea has been working on motorcycle issues. He can be reached at the same phone number. Officer O’Dea has checked on the motorcycle group activity and some have been speeding. Officer Menchaca explained in regard to speed surveys that this allows LAPD to run lasers; it is in process but needs to be certified. He also explained that Sergeant Eun will be taking over the CTSU. The unit does not write up accident reports; different officers are assigned to that duty. George Wolfberg advocated for the use of drones to document traffic accidents. He explained that the clearance time using drones is only 15 minutes rather than hours, which is important for PCH accidents, and that Michigan is using drones for this purpose. Carol Bruch asked what citizens can do about repeated incidents of cars running red lights. Officer Menchaca replied that the officer has to see the violation. Gil Dembo stated that LADOT is responsible for traffic control officers and more officers are needed at Sunset and Church lane.

7.5.2.    Sharon Shapiro – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, Field Deputy.

Shapiro reported that traffic control officers were present at the Church Lane/Sunset intersection during the 405 construction. The Council office is aware that this is an intersection with an issue. Staffing availability and cost are factors in traffic control officer assignment; there is a recommendation for officers at Barrington and Bundy. Councilmember Bonin has proposed lane restriping at the 405 onramp NB; it is hoped that this will be done by the end of the month. Village School asked for the City to pump out water from a storm drain; crews are continuing to work overtime to do this and to clean up debris from the rains. Sharon explained the Councilmember’s recent motion to take more sworn police officers from administrative positions and put them back on patrol. She also explained his positions on ballot measures: He supports Measure M as a way to regulate the marijuana industry. He does not support Measure S because he feels it will exacerbate homelessness. Richard Blumenberg asked about when the R1 variations are expected to be in effect. Sharon will check with Tricia Keane and get back to us.

7.5.3.    Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, District Representative.

Janet advised that Congressman Lieu had a recent meeting with the VA regarding homelessness. The VA will be opening permanent supportive housing with 100 new units. This is in the planning stages. There is also a new project with an outside developer involving 3 or 4 nuisance hotels that will be converted to housing for homeless vets. Pacific Palisades was mentioned twice in the meeting: The VA will break ground this spring for a columbarium with10,000 units which Dick Littlestone of the Palisades had long lobbied for; the American Legion Post in the Palisades was also mentioned as a contributor to the LA National Museum to renovate the Bob Hope Chapel. Janet emphasized that Congressman Lieu welcomes constituent comments and suggestions.

7.5.4.    Veronica de la Cruz Robles – Office of City Attorney Mike Feuer, Deputy City Attorney/ WLA Neighborhood Prosecutor. See item 11.1 below.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    VPCLC.

David Kaplan, co-chair, reported on the status of the Caruso project construction barrier signage on Sunset. He spoke to Michael Williams with LADBS, who informed David that as the result of an inspection on February 21, it was determined that the signage is actually located on public property, which removes jurisdiction from LADBS. The Order to Comply previously issued by LADBS was therefore rescinded and the matter was referred to Public Works. In response to questions, David explained that he does not know what the current status is, other than there is no longer a matter pending with LADBS and the City is taking no action at this time.

9.    General Public Comment.

Eric Marshall asked for the Council to support the status of Los Angeles as a sanctuary city and oppose the Trump administration’s immigration policies. He noted that our police officers are already overextended and that the Palisades has a heritage of being a sanctuary for artists escaping the Nazis. He urged the Council to pass a resolution in support of the City’s sanctuary status and of other groups’ efforts to assist refugees, and in opposition to the use of local police to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement actions. Maryam thanked him and stated that she will consider the matter.Marge Gold inquired if the Chipotle CUB will come before the PPCC board and Maryam replied that this will occur.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Vehicle Dwelling Ordinance, LAMC 85.02.

Presenting: LAPD Senior Lead Officer Michael Moore and Deputy City Attorney/WLA Neighborhood Prosecutor Veronica de la Cruz Lopez [Robles]. Veronica explained that her office drafted the ordinance pursuant to the directive of the City Council. The Council wanted to regulate the practice of vehicle dwelling while not criminalizing the homeless. The new law is temporary and will expire on July 1, 2018, unless extended by ordinance. She passed out a handout and explained the various provisions of the ordinance as to where and when vehicular dwelling is allowed or prohibited. Veronica advised that outreach and education to the homeless has been ongoing by various agencies. Violations of the ordinance are infractions only; LAPD can write citations but there will be no misdemeanor arrests. She explained the different fines that can be imposed and the fact that officers do not have towing authority. A map was created to help the public understand the neighborhoods where vehicle dwelling is allowed or disallowed; this can be found online. The map is only for guidance to the public; citations will be issued by officers based on the actual ordinance language. In order to issue citations officers must find that at least two factors are present to show evidence of living in a vehicle, as set forth in the ordinance. Maryam asked whether the City Attorney has a “Heart” program that forgives the citation in exchange for community service. Veronica explained that there is such a program. Maryam also asked whether this ordinance will actually be a deterrent. SLO Michael Moore stated that Officer Rusty Redican has been working on outreach and has convinced many people living in vehicles along PCH to move to other areas based on the ordinance going into effect. They haven’t yet looked at other areas of the Palisades although he has information there may be some vehicle dwelling taking place on Palisades Dr. Michael encouraged residents to email him if they see any problem with vehicle dwelling. He believes that talking to individuals and letting them know the consequences has been effective. Sharon Kilbride also noted Rusty’s success in getting numerous RVs to move away from the area and she related an incident involving a vehicle parked near her home, in which the police found guns and drug paraphernalia; she emphasized that residents must report suspicious vehicles to the police. Gil Dembo asked if there is any size restriction on vehicles where people are dwelling. Michael said there is no size restriction; the criterion is simply whether there is evidence of living in the vehicle. Lou Kamer asked how this relates to abandoned vehicle law or related laws. Veronica advised that this ordinance only pertains to vehicle dwelling; it is in addition to other laws that may be applicable. If a car is left for 72 hours you can call the hotline for abandoned vehicles and they can remove the vehicle. Lou also asked whether the 500 ft. limit in the Vehicle Dwelling Ordinance refers to both public and private parks. Sharon Shapiro stated that this is determined by whether the area is zoned as park space.

11.2.    Measure S.

Presenting Yes on S: Marcia Hanscom and Ileana Wachtel. Presenting No on S: Brent Gaisford and Brian VanRiper.  The guest speakers presented respective arguments for and against the Measure and answered questions from the board and audience.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:03pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Richard Cohen, George Wolfberg, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Lou Kamer, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Richard Blumenberg, Sarah Conner, Gil Dembo, Katie Braude, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, Rick Mills, David Card, Peter Culhane.

Voting Alternates:  Andrew Wolfberg, Susan Payne.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Kevin Niles, Brian Deming, Barbara Kohn, Carol Bruch, Bruce Schwartz, Andy Frew, Ted Mackie.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:03pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Brian Deming read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced. Reza Akef explained from the audience that he was not attending the meeting as a board member (Area 8 Alternate Andrew Wolfberg was in attendance in Reza’s place as the voting member).

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Maryam deemed the minutes of February 23, 2017 (as distributed on March 9, 2017) approved. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 3/23/17, 1) Caruso Village Project report and Q/A; 2) Shell Station discussion and possible motion. 4/13/17: 1) WRAC-recommended motions regarding density; 2) Moku Sushi CUB; 3) appointment of Nominating Committee for PPCC officer nominees. 4/27/17. 1) PPTFH Count report; 2) (tentative) Bylaws amendments (first distribution). 5/11/17. 1) (tentative) Bylaws amendments discussion and vote; 2) (tentative) Bernheimer Gardens new property owners; 3) Nominating Committee announcement. 5/25/17. 1) MKPOA/PPCL presentation; 2) City Attorney as guest.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $41,764. There was one significant transaction: PPCC received a $2,000 contribution from Morgan Stanley, Richard’s employer, in honor of Richard’s volunteer service of many years.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Maryam welcomed the newly-appointed representative for Canyon Elementary School, Leiauna Anderson, as the Education Representative on the board. Leiauna replaces the former representative Dustin Hall, who due to work commitments is unable to continue serving in this capacity. Maryam thanked Dustin for his service.

7.1.2.    Regarding the recent election results, Maryam reported that Mike Bonin has been re-elected as our Councilman; there will be a runoff for the LAUSD District 4 seat between Steve Zimmer and Nick Melvoin; and Measure H passed while Measure S failed.

7.1.3.    Regarding Morgan Stanley, this was a $2,000 contribution from the Morgan Stanley Foundation. Maryam thanked Richard Cohen for his steady volunteer service to the board and Morgan Stanley for its generous contribution. A letter of thanks will be sent.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.   Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Chris reported that the Board of Public Works yesterday denied the adjacent property owners’ appeal of issuance of a Coastal Development Permit for the temporary pole top distributing station (TPTDS) at Sunset and Marquez. CD11 Westside District Director Debbie Dyner Harris attended the hearing and asked Chris to let the PPCC board know that the Board of Public Works indicated its concern with infrastructure projects that benefit the community; that work will not immediately commence on the PTDS because there are additional processes that must play out first; and that LADWP stated at the hearing that it is happy to continue conversations with the adjacent property owners. We received a Notice of Permit Issuance today, which indicates that the Coastal permit is issued and will become effective in 20 days unless a further appeal is filed. The project is also subject to dual jurisdiction under the Coastal Act and will require an additional permit from the California Coastal Commission.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Peter Culhane (Area 2).  Peter reported that there is an ongoing list of things to do in the Highlands and around town, and that he, Lou Kamer and Brian Deming are joining forces to get work done. They will keep everyone posted.

7.3.2.    Lou Kamer (At Large).

Lou reported that there will be a Chautauqua cleanup a week from Sunday at 8am; the goal is to make the pedestrian path walk-able so that it isn’t a trip hazard. He explained that this work will be outside of PPCC and is part of an ongoing process in which members of this board will help out and try to find what they can do themselves instead of waiting for the City to act. Many people have volunteered and want to work. He also reported that after hauling is over, they will think about talking to the City about further improvements on Chautauqua so that the roadway and vegetation can be a wonderful entrance to the Palisades. Lou will also be talking about pedestrian safety and crosswalks at a future PPCC meeting.

7.3.3.     (Add-on item) Sue Kohl (Area 5).

Sue announced that she has sent out notice to Alphabets Street residents for addresses with sidewalk trip hazards; she received 25-30 such addresses. The City is coming out on March 15 to do repair work. They do not fill potholes; they put asphalt over sidewalks which have been raised up and are a trip hazard due to tree roots. The work is to make sidewalks safe for pedestrians. Any addresses that are not completed will be added to the list for the next scheduled repair date.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA).

Rick announced that the annual PPBA Pancake Breakfast and Opening Day ceremonies will take place at the Palisades Rec. Center on March 11. The Pancake Breakfast is from 7:30-10:30am and Opening ceremonies are at 9:30am. Breakfast tickets are $5 and all proceeds benefit PPBA. Keanu Reeves will throw out the first ball.

7.4.2.    Sarah Conner (PPRA).

Sarah announced that PPRA was at the appeal hearing for the TPTDS. She reported that PPRA supports a pad-mounted alternative and maintains that the TPTDS was erected without notification or proper permits. PPRA’s position is that a pad-mount would be economically feasible, can be done quickly and would reduce visible blight. There will likely be an appeal by the adjacent property owners, which PPRA will support. PPRA encourages the community to switch to LED lighting and to consider getting (variable speed) pool motors since rebates are available. There may be as many as five additional TPTDS coming in the Palisades and PPRA believes we need alternative solutions. Brian Deming added that support for the pad-mounted alternative is not an effort to revive locating the TPTDS near Marquez Charter School. Maryam stated that she has invited the owners of the adjacent Bernheimer lot and LADWP representatives to attend our May 11 board meeting to present information, unless the issue is moot by then.

7.4.3.    Richard Blumenberg (PPCL).

Richard advised that the City Council yesterday passed the R1 Variation Zones for Pacific Palisades. The Council also voted the week before to pass the BMO-BHO Amendments. Once signed by the Mayor the ordinances will go into effect. Maps of the areas affected and information showing the restrictions can be found on the Planning or Neighborhood Conservation websites.

7.4.4.    David Card (PP Rotary).

David announced that Rustic Canyon Recreation Center will host its annual free Spring Festival and first annual Crafters Fair on April 15, from 11am-2pm (Festival) and 11am-4pm (Crafters Fair).  David explained that in addition to being the Rotary Club representative to PPCC, he is also a member of the Rustic Canyon Park Advisory Board and has therefore been reporting on Rustic Canyon Park events.

7.4.5.    (Add-on item) Gil Dembo (TCA).  Gil announced that TCA has a new Facebook page,

7.4.6.    (Add-on item) Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce).

Susan reported that the Chamber is hosting a new event this year, the Distinguished Speaker Series. The next event is on March 30, 8am at Pepperdine. The speaker will be Brendan Jacobson, Google Strategic Partnerships Manager. Pepperdine will provide breakfast. Tickets are $35/Chamber members, $45/general admission.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Michael Moore – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”), SLO – Not present.

7.5.2.    Sharon Shapiro – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, Field Deputy – Not present.

7.5.3.    Stephanie Cohen – Office of Assemblymember Richard Bloom, Field Representative – Not present.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    VPCLC (David Kaplan, Co-Chair).

David gave an update on the Caruso Village Project construction. He explained that the appeal of the Caruso signs by certain residents with LADBS was dismissed, and another appeal by these residents filed with the Public Works Department was in turn also dismissed. Caruso will be getting involved with local schools for a contest to select kids’ art to be placed on the fencing; Caruso VP Michael Gazzano will attend our March 23 board meeting to describe more about what they intend to do. Vintage Grocers will also come before us with their CUB application at a future date. David reminded the board that as part of PPCC’s approval of the project last year, we had suggested that Caruso start a fund to help with projects, particularly in the business district; Caruso has now agreed to donate $9,000 to the Park Advisory Board to help with addition of new parking. David also reported that Michael Gazzano advises that the hauling has been successful so far and will be done by end of this month if not sooner.

9.    General Public Comment.

Marge Gold announced that the Village Green will be “yarn-bombed” in honor of National Women’s History Month. She encouraged local schools to bring students to view the displays. Leiauna Anderson (new PPCC Education rep) will endeavor to let schools know about the project.

Daphne Gronich, PAPA President, reported that the first Parade volunteer meeting this year will take place next Monday at the American Legion at 6:30pm. All interested in becoming volunteers are welcome to attend.

Bill Bruns stated that the new library bookstore will be larger than the old Village Books space and should generate a lot of money for the library.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Friends of the Library.

Presentation by Laurel Garver and Rick Leslie, AIA. Laurel chairs the library bookstore and previously received the PPCC Golden Sparkplug award for her efforts. The new bookstore is an expanded version of the original bookstore. The Friends have been using an outdoor space on the patio to sell books, CDs and DVDs. They received a generous bequest from a longtime member, Jimmy Mitchell, which allows them to break ground on a larger interior bookstore. City approvals are required and there is a March 20 hearing with the Planning Dept. Laurel explained that the Friends are asking for PPCC to support the project. Rick Leslie is the project architect; he gave a brief presentation on the architectural plans and design. The new bookstore will be 1,100 sq. ft., much larger than the patio area, and will fill a triangular space inside between the teen and children’s sections, in back of the check-out desk. Sale proceeds will support library programs and supplement the purchase of books and materials for the library. Construction will take about 8 months; library services and use will remain the same during construction.

George Wolfberg made the following motion, seconded by Andrew Wolfberg: “PPCC supports the creation of a new bookstore within the Palisades Library.” The motion passed unanimously.

Chris Spitz then made a motion, seconded by Andrew Wolfberg, to add the following language to the previous motion: “We find the proposed bookstore to be a positive addition to the Palisades and understand that the proceeds from sales will continue to support library programs and supplement the purchase of books and materials for the Palisades Branch library.” The motion also passed unanimously.

11.2.    Earlham Construction Project (15210, 15214 & 15218 Earlham).

Invited to present: Reza Akef (developer) with soils engineer Dr. Hans Hoek (geologist with Byer Geotechnical) and grading engineer Jeffrey Wilson (geologist with the LADBS Grading Division); neighbors Brett Bjornson, Hart Levin, Mike Sultan and Randi & Paul Frisch. Maryam announced that Reza had recused himself as a board member and was attending the meeting as developer of the projects at the above addresses. Reza explained that the projects were started in 2014, when he sought to create homes on the site that blend in with the community. He submitted plans to the City for required structural and engineering study and approval. He selected Byer Geotechnical as the geologist for the projects. Byer has worked for over 45 years in the field, is very well-respected and one of the best in the region. Together with his geologist, Reza answered all questions the City had, including questions from the head of the LADBS Grading Division. Reza also met with community members many times, on over 6 occasions in the last year. He mailed 32 letters to his neighborhood about a community meeting in July. He explained that he is at the board meeting tonight because there has been a lot of misinformation and confusion about the projects and he wants to have a productive conversation and reach a solution. Reza showed the board plans of the three homes he plans to build. He reduced the roofline/height on two of the residences at the community’s request. On the third residence he had to add a bedroom on the roof due to the slope of the property but he did bring the roofline down. Reza explained these were four lots originally, not one lot; in the past the community has said it wants less density so he decided to take the four lots and make them into three 12,000 sq. ft. lots, which the Planning Dept. approved. Each home is about 6500 sq. ft. with a 3000 sq. ft. basement (which brings each to about 10,000 sq. ft.). The basement level is tucked under the dirt that no one will see. Reza explained that had he built two stories at street level he would have had to build a 10 ft. high retaining wall. He has lowered the heights as much as possible and pushed the projects deeper into the canyon, so that less is seen but more exists. Reza explained that the heights are lower than what is allowed under the Municipal Code, everything is minimized and no variances are sought.

Jeffrey Wilson of the LADBS Grading Division then spoke regarding geologic issues. He explained that he has been with the department for 11 years as a geologist. He has primary responsibility for review of geological and grading reports and is concerned for the safety of development in the community. Mr. Wilson advised that he is responsible for reviewing these projects. He is aware of the Potrero Canyon landslides and the City’s project to fill the Canyon to protect homes. The hillsides are now buttressed by fill, which protects the rim properties. The projects at issue are not relying on fill but instead are relying on friction piles being placed into bedrock. Mr. Wilson further stated that that is the standard practice, and the consulting geologist and City inspector have in fact determined where the bedrock is.

Reza then distributed a rendering showing rooflines of the projects viewed from the top down. He stated that the design of these homes minimizes impacts and that he has gone beyond the setbacks required by Coastal; most of the setbacks will be 10 feet. There will be larger open spaces between homes and increased green space. He is using less than 33% of the lots for the construction and is trying to do 60% landscaping around the homes, taking into account deed restrictions. Reza noted that this has been an extremely difficult process to go through. He must provide lateral support, including shoring with I-beams and lagging to support traffic overload on the adjacent street, and he must post a $250,000 bond. The lateral support work must be done before drilling starts for caissons and friction piles for the homes. Reza explained that he wants to be transparent and to answer any and all questions openly.

Neighbor Brett Bjornson spoke next. He passed out maps and showed posters of geologic conditions on Earlham. He disputed that there is now a 27% slope and spoke about drill holes being in 3 spots from which a 27% slope was assumed. He also showed pictures of the area from years ago showing a steep 80% slope. He discussed geologic activity near his home and at 15206 Earlham. Brett stated that at the bottom of the canyon there is a pond created by the fill. He maintains that there is no certified fill where Reza proposes to build. Brett also explained that he doubts the current geological report.

Soils Engineer Dr. Hans Hoek then explained that he is a geologist with Byer Geotechnical and wrote the geological report. He is a licensed geologist with a PhD in geology. He stated that Brett Bjornson’s assertions have little to do with geology and design. The arguments are based on surveys that were done in 1960s, 70s and 80s, before grading started. There are many detailed maps with contours of the canyon which show streams at different times. Dr. Hoek explained that Byer considered all that information and drilled 8 boring holes to look for bedrock. He stated that bedrock can be recognized in the borings. They identified where the bedrock was based on the 8 borings and interpolated where it was supposed to be. The slope is measured from the bottom where bedrock is found. The flatter the slope the more conservative the approach. Dr. Hoek disputed Brett’s presentation regarding the existing slope. He noted that no geologist has submitted a letter supporting Brett’s conclusions. Dr. Hoek stated that he has read all the reports and studies and the facts support his position regarding the geologic conditions. According to Dr. Hoek, all the homes will be completely supported by bedrock.

Neighbor Mike Sultan then spoke, noting that Reza’s father started 10 years ago trying to build four homes at the site, but those homes were never built. Mike maintained that instability has been a problem on Earlham for many years and that landslide no. 5 has never been removed under the Earlham bluffs. He stated that there are numerous reports from state agencies and from John Byer in the past regarding geologic conditions; Byer previously stated in a letter that nothing could be built there. Mike showed pictures of Potrero Canyon in the past and said that he believed dirt in tributary canyons has never been compacted or certified. The past pictures show a steep drop. Mike also opposes the projects due to their size. In his opinion a home of 10,000 sq. ft. on the bluff is out of character. He believes the homes will be four stories high on the backside. Mike explained that Reza has provided a wider view corridor but is allowed to build 1600 to 1800 sq. ft. more because of the expanded view corridor. Mike said that residents don’t want the view corridor. He is also concerned about conflicting geological reports, and he read from the 1993 letter from Byer. Mr. Wilson explained that since that letter was written, the canyon has been buttressed to a higher degree and made safer. Mike replied that the 1993 Recreation and Parks report regarding the finger canyon concluded that the bluffs can’t be certified for further development. Mr. Wilson reiterated that conditions have changed since then; the recent buttressing of the slope with fill creates safer conditions. Dr. Hoek added that originally it was believed there would not be structural fill; now in order to build a house the developer has to go 80 ft. down until piles are supported in the bedrock below; John Byer did not realize 20 years ago that people would be drilling holes for piles.

Maryam Zar noted that based on what has been explained the homes don’t rely on fill but on bedrock for support. She indicated that she understands the City will be regularly monitoring the progress of construction and asked whether residents distrust the City to do its work correctly. Brett replied that residents do distrust the City and he suggested that negligence or improper activity by the geologists is involved. Mike added that he wants assurances from the City and from a 3rd party geologist, although he also acknowledged that Reza has been transparent and has worked with the community.

David Kaplan, Area 6 rep, explained that this body is not going to issue any determination or make any statement to allow these projects to be built or not to be built. That is not our purpose or role. The intent here is to give everyone an opportunity to describe their positions and help them perhaps come to a resolution. It is not our intent to force anything down anyone’s throat, nor do we have a dog in this fight. David stated that he understands that there were written statements in the past that nothing should be built here, which may or may not be true now. In the event the degree of slope is 80% as some say, and holes are dug and it is determined that the bedrock is actually 50 ft. farther down than originally believed, that will be addressed by City monitoring. David suggested that if this occurs, pilings could be built to connect to bedrock no matter where the bedrock is located.

Brett then questioned the geologist’s interpolation of where bedrock is located and suggested the boring holes were strategically placed. Maryam asked why Dr. Hoek drilled in those particular spots. Dr. Hoek explained that they drilled 8 holes and the previous borings were done in different places. He tried to locate the bottom of the landslide and to get enough information to know where the bedrock is located. He did not strategically place borings to obtain the desired result.

Paul Green, a resident on Earlham, then spoke. He remembers an 80% slope in the past and believes there cannot be bedrock at 40 ft. Another resident, Chip Houghton, stated that there are many issues; this isn’t all black and white. He believes there is a need to follow through with concerns and he wants to make sure it’s done the right way.

Richard Cohen explained that PPCC does not take positions on residential projects such as this. We don’t normally consider by-right, single family construction and we aren’t capable of analyzing geology. Richard stated that we are fortunate to have highly respected professionals Mr. Wilson and Dr. Hoek at our meeting and it is inappropriate for anyone in attendance to use words like “negligence” or to suggest improper activity in connection with the geologists’ work. We should appreciate their having come to our meeting to provide information and to answer the community’s questions.

Andrew Wolfberg asked if there will be a drain installed and how will it make the projects safer for the community. Dr. Hoek replied that there will be a drain; currently there is erosion because of lack of a drain, but that condition will be fixed.

David Card remarked that there is curb drain at the bottom of Earlham, which was the cause of the Potrero landslide problem years ago. He asked what is happening with the curb drain. Rick Mills then stated that he assumes there are a host of conditions on the grading permits; as construction progresses and inspectors monitor the situation, any issues that arise such as bedrock variance will be addressed to meet grading requirements.

Regarding David Card’s question, Reza responded that he met with former Potrero Canyon project manager Rob Hancock of BOE. Reza posted a $250,000 bond and will be redrawing and building the curb storm drain and connecting it with the canyon storm drain. He must do significant dirt removal at the site. He also negotiated with Rob Hancock for the City to allow 450 truckloads of dirt to go directly into the canyon rather than be hauled from the site using residential streets.

Regarding Rick Mills’ statement, Reza explained that both Byer and the City Grading Division have reviewed all letters submitted by Brett. They have determined that the arguments in these letters have no merit and are irrelevant. A geological report was issued by Byer and set forth many conditions, including provisions for lateral support. As the projects progress, the City will monitor the situation and if there are any issues the projects will be halted until the problems can be resolved.

Brett advised that the projects will be appealed and he will not spend money on a geologist. David Kaplan encouraged all parties to work together to try and work out something that satisfies everyone. Susan Payne remarked that the information presented by Brett regarding geology was confusing and the neighbors should retain a geologist to do a geological report in order to substantiate their arguments. Rick Mills reiterated that the City will do its job and monitor the projects and if there are unforeseen conditions, Reza will be required to meet them. Maryam inquired whether the board was interested in taking any action or position in regard to these projects; no motion was made to take any board action or position.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:04 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Richard Cohen, George Wolfberg, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Lou Kamer, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Gil Dembo, Reza Akef, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, Rick Mills, David Card, Rick Lemmo.

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick, Alan Goldsmith, Bruce Schwartz, Barbara Kohn.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Kevin Niles, Brian Deming, Andy Frew, Ted Mackie, Ron Dean, Doria Anselmo.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:02pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chris Spitz read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Maryam deemed the minutes of March 9, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings 4/13/17. 1) WRAC-recommended motions regarding density; 2) Moku Sushi CUB. 4/27/17. 1) PPTFH Count report; 2) (tentative) Bylaws amendments (first distribution). 5/11/17. 1) (tentative) Bylaws amendments discussion and vote; 2) (tentative) Bernheimer Gardens new property owners; 3) Nominating Committee announcement. 5/25/17. 1) MKPOA/PPCL presentation; 2) City Attorney as guest.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $41,032. There was one significant transaction since the last meeting – payment of our D&O liability premium of $515. Renewal of our general liability policy will also be coming up in a couple of weeks.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Secretary announcement.  Maryam stated that due to his work commitments, Michael Soneff has had to resign as Secretary. Maryam has found a wonderful replacement and that is Allison Holdorff. Allison was one of the candidates in the recent election for the LAUSD School Board District 4 seat. She will be able to begin as PPCC’s Secretary in April. The board unanimously approved Allison’s appointment as Secretary.

7.1.2.    Nominating Committee (Officers election).  Maryam announced appointment of the Nominating Committee to recommend nominees for PPCC officers for the term beginning in July. The election will take place the first meeting in June. The Committee members are Dick Wulliger (Chair), Danielle Samulon, Barbara Marinacci and Rick McGeagh.

7.1.3.    Drug awareness programming at middle and high school.  Maryam explained that since PPCC addressed the issue of marijuana regulation, parents have emailed her with interest in the issue. She has lined up three days of lunchtime programming at Paul Revere Middle School for drug awareness; a representative of DEA will attend. Similar programming will also occur at the high school.

7.1.4.   Sharon Shapiro departure.  Maryam reported that unfortunately our area deputy Sharon Shapiro is no longer with the CD11 office. She stated that Debbie Dyner Harris of CD11 will report with further details.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice Chair).

George stated that this past Tuesday there were several hearings at the Planning Dept. for Coastal Development Permits for various parcels on DePauw. George and Gil Dembo both attended. George wanted to make sure that the hearing officer was aware of the Zoning Information Bulletin, which was drafted at the instigation of PPCC to inform people building on these lots that there is concern for the view shed from Canyon trails. We don’t want 12 ft. retaining walls on the edge of the canyon. The point was well made and was successful. One of the developers indicated that he was going to require a haul route on three of the sites. Reza is one of the builders on the rim and he is hauling soil directly into the canyon, thereby saving neighborhood streets from having the trucks. The other developer wants to do the same, and George put him in contact with the City Engineer in charge, Pedro Garcia. More soil isn’t needed for the canyon at this point but they will stay in contact in the event the opportunity arises in the future.

7.2.2.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Chris reported that the Executive Committee approved a letter from the Chair stating our longstanding and continuing support for the Zoning Information Bulletin guidelines with respect to development on the Potrero Canyon rim, in order to protect the view shed from Canyon trails, and also stating that we concur with the written comments of George Wolfberg in regard to certain DePauw rim developments which are applying for Coastal Development Permits. Anyone with questions about the Zoning Information Bulletin or PPCC’s position is welcome to contact Chris or George after the meeting. The letters can be viewed at the PPCC website.

Chris also reported that the proposed new Accessory Dwelling Units Ordinance was approved as amended in the City Council PLUM Committee on Tuesday. We are seeking information as to the approved amendments and will follow up as needed. The matter will next proceed to the full City Council for a vote. Please contact Chris with any questions about this ordinance.

Finally, Chris reminded the board that the recent zoning code changes, including the BMO-BHO code amendments and R1Variation Zones for the Palisades, are in effect as of last Friday. Residents can view the changes on the Planning Department/Neighborhood Conservation website, or for more information contact

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Sue Kohl (Area 5).

Sue announced that the City has repaired many sidewalks in the Alphabet Streets. They will return in September to repair more. A few addresses had to be referred to another agency but they are working hard. Sue also stated that Bruce Schwartz did all the work replanting the median at Sunset & Chautauqua and due to the heavy rains had to do it all over again. The board extended its thanks to Bruce.

7.3.2.    Lou Kamer (At Large).

Lou reported that a work party cleaned up the walkway on Chautauqua this past Sunday and it was great for the community to work together. A second work party will take place next month. Daphne Gronich presented to Lou the idea of approaching Revere students to come up with the next project that they think is important. Gil Dembo asked whether the walkway on Chautauqua should be paved by the City. Maryam said we will leave that to Debbie to address. Sue Kohl asked if any of the work was on private property. Lou explained that they only worked on the area that is City property, up to the curb. He explained that going along Chautauqua at some point the walkway becomes very thin until there is only private property with no sidewalk.

7.3.3.    Cathy Russell (Area 7).

Cathy explained that trees along Sunset have been trimmed. There is going to be a grove planting party on March 25. David Card explained that the grove planting work will take place on Saturday at Rustic Canyon Park at 9am. They will be pulling weeds and planting new Acacia, Eucalyptus and other trees. David stated that he and George will be there and invited all in the community to pitch in. Cathy also reported that the Rustic Canyon Park Spring Festival will take place on April 15 from 11am-2pm, as will a Crafters Fair from 11am-4pm. George announced that a grant was received for the City to put in a new sidewalk on Entrada. Because the street is above the gutter, the City will grind down the street to meet the new gutter.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA). Rick reported that the annual Spring Eggstravaganza will take place on April 15 from 10am-2pm at the Palisades Recreation Center, with an egg hunt and activities for babies-12 year olds. Please contact the park if you are interested in helping out.

7.4.2.    Rick Lemmo (Chamber of Commerce).  Rick announced that the Chamber’s next Distinguished Speaker Series event, previously scheduled for March 30, has been postponed due to a scheduling conflict with the speaker Brendan Jacobson. The event will be rescheduled. The Chamber is also hosting an after-hours mixer at Palisades High School on March 27, 2017 from 5:30-7:30pm.

7.5.     From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Michael Moore – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”), SLO.

Officer Moore stated that crime is starting to go down and people seem to have gotten the message about not leaving keys in cars. Richard Cohen asked about the incident that was reported involving an old woman in her car on Las Pulgas. Officer Moore had no information about that. Lou asked what can be done to mitigate problems with motorcycles. Officer Moore stated that LAPD is trying, but not a lot can be done about the noise. Past inspections have shown that the bikes are not altered to make excessive noise, and the noise is due to the fact that they are in a pack. The police must look for other violations such as speeding, failing to stop at lights, not having proper permits, etc. Officer Menchaca, who spoke at PPCC a few meetings ago, has been replaced. The West Traffic Division knows the motorcycles are an ongoing complaint. In response to a question from Chris Spitz, Officer Moore confirmed that Officer O’Dea is still working on motorcycle issues at West Traffic. Lou mentioned that there are ordinances in other areas that put heavy fines on excessive speeding and asked whether we can we do this. Richard Cohen said that speed laws are instituted by the State and we can’t do anything about that. Maryam asked if the police are issuing violations for speeding. Officer Moore explained that the police are around and do issue speeding citations, but the majority of violations are from vehicles other than motorcycles. Sometimes the police determine that the bikers are out of compliance and don’t have the proper motorcycle license. The bikers send out scouts in advance to see if LAPD are present along the route. Officer Moore also announced that we will have a new captain coming in, Brian Winling. It will be a smooth transition. David Card asked if bikers have qualifications to be riding on motorcycles. Officer Moore said that most do, and if not, the bikes are taken away. Richard Cohen explained that the largest group is the Ruthless Ryderz, who can be found online. There are certificates of appreciation for their toy drives on their FB page. They aren’t Hell’s Angels but are aggressive riders. Their attitude is that these are public roads and we’ll do as we please. Alan Goldsmith asked whether the criminal investigation of the fire on Michael Lane, when a woman was killed, has been resolved. Officer Moore explained that this would be by arson investigators and he doesn’t have information about that investigation. An audience member stated that she has seen immigration enforcement trucks in the area, along West Channel Rd. Does LAPD know about this? Officer Moore is aware but doesn’t have any information; LAPD is out of the loop in regard to immigration enforcement. Donna Vaccarino (audience) asked what recourse there is for residents who observe speeding in the Alphabet Streets. Officer Moore explained that LAPD uses the section of the law that allows citations to be issued based on whether the vehicle is traveling at an “unsafe speed” according to road and area conditions, regardless of the posted speed limit. However, an officer has to observe the incident. If residents observe speeding they can notify Officer Moore and he will get the information to West Traffic. LAPD will need license plate information and other details. Sometimes if it is a local resident Officer Moore will visit the person himself and this can be effective. Donna reported that in some adjacent communities Officer Moore is mentioned as someone who is on top of enforcement. Maryam thanked him for his efforts.

7.5.2.    Debbie Dyner Harris – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, District Director.

Debbie announced that Sharon Shapiro has moved on to other opportunities and is now working for Waste Management, a private company. She did not have time to say a proper farewell but on her behalf Debbie says thank you from Sharon. Debbie’s standards are very high for Sharon’s replacement. In the meantime, Debbie is here for whatever we need. She reported that Mike Bonin is grateful for our support in his election. He won with 72% of the vote district wide and owes his election significantly to the Palisades, which voted over 75% in support of Bonin. He will work very hard for us. CD11 was glad to be able to get the trees trimmed on Sunset. Debbie thanked Lou for his group cleanup effort. CD11 will be happy to work with them in the future and provide guidance. She reported that street medians are supposed to be maintained by the City but the City’s contractor walked off the job citywide and they don’t know when they are getting a new contractor. They will try to get help if there is a safety or visibility problem in the interim. Brian Deming asked about sending a message for Sharon, and Debbie said to send messages to her and she will forward on. Reza Akef asked if there is a way to get better advance notification regarding subcontractors working on the street for utilities. Debbie replied that she will try to connect with the Bureau of Street Services about this. Sometimes if a contractor doesn’t have permission they will call LAPD. CD11 doesn’t get notification during regular work hours. She will look into whether a system can be put in place for more advance notification. Maryam asked that PPCC also be informed in advance so that we can let the community know. Lou stated that he has been working on a Google WAZE program and he could put street closures in the program. Debbie will look into it.

7.5.3.    (Add on) Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, District Representative.

Janet reported that all are invited to a reception for the Congressional Art Competition on April 22, 2017, at the Wallis Annenberg Center. Artwork entries are still being invited. Winning artwork hangs in the Congress in Washington, D.C. Congressman Lieu introduced a cyber scholarship for students pursuing degrees in cyber security. He has co-sponsored a bill involving biofeedback for vets suffering from PTSD. He also wrote a letter to Homeland Security to increase public awareness of mobile phone security issues. Janet also reported that the summer 2017 internship program is now open; only students outside of LA are accepted for the summer program.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    Nominating Committee.

Dick Wulliger (Committee Chair) reported that the Committee is looking at four officer positions for the term commencing on July 1: Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary. The Committee would like to receive names of persons who are interested in running. Anyone can suggest potential nominees to Dick (email address on PPCC website); members may self-nominate. The Nominating Committee will meet and consider all potential nominees. At the first PPCC meeting in May the Committee will present its nominations. Board members can then nominate other persons for officer positions at the second meeting in May. The election of officers will occur at the first meeting in June.

9.    General Public Comment – None.

10.    Old Business.

10.1.    Shell Station – Matters of Hours of Operation and Sales of Alcohol.

Maryam announced that the minutes of the Feb. 9 PPCC meeting were distributed to the board and the parties on both sides are here to answer questions. She has received two letters submitted by the applicants and concerned neighbors. Maryam read first from the concerned neighbors’ letter in opposition to the application for operating hours and a CUB, in which the reasons for their opposition were given. She then read from a letter by the applicant Saeed Kohaneff, giving his position and updates on the status of negotiations regarding the matter. Maryam stated that there were two issues that the board would be discussing: operating hours and alcohol sales.

A.  Operating hours: Barbara Kohn offered to read draft minutes of what was approved at the DRB; they approved the design and also made comments about the use which were not forwarded to the Director of Planning. Maryam indicated that this would be deferred until later in the meeting if there is time. Andy Frew: What are the current working hours? Michael Kohaneff: 6am-11pm. The City allows 7am-11pm. Andy: Do they have CUP in place for 6am-11pm? Michael K: Those are the original hours for the site that predate the CUP process; they are operating on grandfathered hours. David Card: What is the applicant now proposing now for operating hours? Michael K: We are asking for 5am- midnight. Rick Lemmo: What are you asking for alcohol sales hours? Michael K: 8am-10pm, but we are flexible. David Kaplan: Of the 272 names on an opposing petition, how many are outside the immediate area? Sandra Eddy (audience): At least 80% are in the condo area. Reza Akef: Regarding protection for kids, is swiping of the IDs required for everyone, including adults? Michael K: Yes, the register won’t allow the transaction if no ID is swiped. Reza: What other measures are there? Michael K: They are considering putting in refrigerators behind the cashier so only the cashiers would have access to the alcohol. Alan Goldsmith: What types of wine and beer will be sold? Michael K: Only craft beers, 6-packs or more, and higher end wines, with the cheapest bottles at $19.99. Lou Kamer: Many kids are getting alcohol purchased by adults and brought to them; the applicants have the burden of proof that this isn’t a detriment to the community. What is your response beyond locking cabinets; how does this use protect the community? Reza: Parents can go to Ralphs and Gelson’s and buy alcohol for kids; it is not fair to hold Mr. Kohaneff to that standard. Reza agrees there should be a plan for the village, but it is not fair to subject Mr. Kohaneff to a unilateral approach. Reza watches people go into Ralphs and buy items for the homeless. Maryam: Research shows that most underage persons access alcohol through their own home. She will agendize a broader discussion at a future date about alcohol sales in Pacific Palisades. Michael K: They will have a huge advantage over Ralphs in terms of security, because the cashier will have the ability via security camera to see if kids are outside and whether adults are buying alcohol for them. Lou: He is concerned about proximity to homes and safe routes to school. Is this an appropriate use for this area? Michael K: They have never had any violations in 10 years at their locations. Richard Cohen: As a rule the PPCC board doesn’t take positions in favor of development. There have been only two notable exceptions – a Sunrise height variance and the Caruso project. He doesn’t think there would be a 2/3 consensus in favor of this application. On the other hand, the applicants were responsible in their operations at the Mobil station and now have moved to Shell; it seems fair that they should have a shot at doing the business they intend to do at property which they own. Richard would be reluctant to deny them the right to do that business. But he is also concerned about favoring the project in the face of the neighbors’ concerns. Excellent arguments have been presented on both sides. He doesn’t see a potential for a consensus and there may not be a point in beating a dead horse. Sue Kohl: Why do the applicants want to operate 5am-midnight? Michael K: Between 11-12pm and between 5-6am are busy times; with the Caruso project open they want to be able to service workers and people leaving movies and stores. This is a convenience for the community. No alcohol will be sold after 10pm. Doug McCormick: He is in favor of having a broad discussion on the larger topic of alcohol. We have the responsibility to set the tenor for the community we live in. Gil Dembo: We need to look at the reality that any new gas station that goes up anywhere has some kind of convenience adjacent or included in it. This is the way of the future. We don’t have control over businesses. Maryam: In the prior DRB discussions the point was made that gas stations are a convenience and there may be fewer and fewer of them because gas is not lucrative; to be profitable they need mini marts and have stopped doing car repairs. David Kaplan: This dispute between an operator and neighbors is a classic dispute. He doesn’t understand the reliance on the argument about impact on children. Ralphs, Gelson’s and CVS all sell alcohol and are down the street. What makes this mini mart more susceptible to children getting alcohol than any other place? David thinks this concern is excessive. Ron Dean: By right they can’t have alcohol and can’t change their hours. They are asking for an exception. The law says several conditions must be met. He does not feel the board is being rational. Maryam: The hours they are given are 7am-11pm without a CUP, but they are grandfathered in from 6am-11pm. They now want 5am-midnight. Rick Lemmo: The opinion of the Chamber of Commerce is that first, you must look at the history; in this case they’ve run a good business. Next, is what they are asking for out of the ordinary? No. And are they willing to curtail something to make the neighborhood happy? Yes, they are curtailing alcohol sales. In addition, between 5-6am and 11pm-midnight they are offering things that are beneficial to the community. The Chamber therefore supports the requested operating hours of 5am-midnight and also the requested alcohol sales hours. Barbara Kohn: This board had a similar conversation about the Starbucks Highlands operating hours; the board voted that a 5am opening was too early due to the proximity of apartments across the street. Chris Spitz pointed out that the position was taken because Starbucks was going to have early morning deliveries, but we were told at the prior meeting that is not the case with the Shell Station. Michael K: They will not be doing early morning deliveries. Marge Gold: The 76 station operating hours are 6am-11pm; this is the same thing the neighbors are asking here.

Rick Lemmo moved on behalf of the Chamber to recommend approving the applicants’ proposed operating hours of 5am-midnight. Reza Akef seconded the motion. A vote was taken and the motion failed for lack of the required 2/3 vote for passage. Rick Mills then moved to affirm the hours of operation from 6am-11pm. The motion failed for lack of a second.

B.  Alcohol sales: Michael K reiterated that the proposed alcohol sales hours are 8am-10pm. The hours at the other location were 8-2am. Marge Gold (audience): No gas station with a mini mart within the Specific Plan area sells alcohol. Cathy Russell: Mobil did sell alcohol prior to being closed. Brian Deming: Why was Mobil different? Ron Dean: They were grandfathered in and were located in a business district, not near residences. Maryam: This isn’t unprecedented in the City; Mobil also predated the requirement for a CUB. Doug McCormick: As PPTFH Chair he works with the State Beach liquor store re homelessness.

Reza moved for PPCC not to take a position and to allow the parties to work out their differences themselves. David Kaplan seconded the motion. The motion passed by a vote in favor by at least 2/3 of members voting.

10.2.    Caruso Construction Project.

Update from Michael Gazzano, VP of Development and Project Manager for the Caruso Village Project.

Michael reported that Caruso received requests for a viewing window to allow residents to see the progress of construction, and that has now been installed on Sunset Blvd. People are excited to be able to view the construction and have thanked Caruso. Michael invited all to come and visit the viewing window to see the progress. The status of the project as of today is that they have reached the bottom of the parking structure, between 30-40 ft. deep. They are in community partnerships with the Park Advisory Board and PRIDE to work on initiatives in the near future, to be determined. Michael explained that the unprecedented rain has impacted the hauling. They have been hit by 40 days of rain delays. It takes 2-3 days after rains for soil to dry out, which means roughly two months of delays. However, they are still on schedule for the grand opening in summer 2018. They have reached the bottom of the hole as of today, but some soil still needs to be brought out. The previous soil removal was done with mass excavation, but now there is a need for more surgical soil excavation. Foundation work and other bits of the project are starting but they need to re-sequence some activities; hauling will continue for the remaining soil. There will be some relief for the community, in that hauling hours will be reduced and will now will start at 9am and end at 5pm. Caruso will also be using smaller trucks, shortened from 65 ft. to 26 ft. The number of truck trips has been significantly reduced, by 90% or fewer. They will not be hauling every day. Hauling will continue until April/May. The next step is to start foundation work this week, but the heavy concrete pour days won’t be for a while; Michael will update the community when that is to occur. The number of concrete trucks used for foundation work will be significantly less than the number of hauling trucks; the concrete trucks won’t use Chautauqua but instead will use Temescal Canyon both ways. Regarding the construction barricades: Caruso would like to put up new graphics but the issue is still pending. Complaints were filed with the City and some have been dismissed. They look forward to being able to add the new graphics, which will be artwork from school kids and historical pictures. David Kaplan: Will the dirt continue to go into the canyon? Michael: Yes, the hauling trucks will continue to go down Chautauqua and then into Potrero. Bruce Schwartz: Have you ever hit water? Michael: No, water is at 90 ft. and Caruso is only going down 40 ft. Alan Goldsmith: He understands that foundation concrete trucks and hauling trucks will not be operating on the same day. Cathy Russell: Will there be a number of concrete trucks coming all at once? Michael: Yes, there will be a few days like that when they are pouring big slabs; Caruso will give advance notice to the community. The concrete truck route will be up and down Temescal Canyon. Sue Pascoe: Is Caruso aware of DWP work putting in vaults for pole tops and that certain lanes on Sunset will be closed while the work is ongoing between March-June? Michael: He will stay in touch with the City and will coordinate regarding possible impediments. Lou: Will concrete pouring take place over spring break or into the summer? Michael: It will be throughout. David Kaplan: He understands they will go down to one or two smaller trucks for hauling going forward – how many trucks were used for the main soil hauling? Michael: Between 10-12 trucks had been used for soil hauling so going down to one or two trucks for the remainder is significant. David Card: The Caruso trucks back up and block lanes on Sunset going east; there is concern that when the project is open for business traffic going into the project will also block lanes. Michael: He is happy to talk to LADOT to make traffic light adjustments as needed; Caruso wants people to arrive conveniently at the project. Rick Mills: Can you say anything about new business tenants? Michael: The leasing of Vintage has been announced; they also have agreements with Benton’s and are talking to other existing tenants. Nothing is finalized; they are in many negotiations with exciting concepts, but nothing public yet. Nicole Howard (audience): What were the objections to the barricades? Michael: Some people didn’t like the name of the company on the signs; Caruso tried to work with them and wants to do a local art contest with schools for kids’ artwork, plus historical photos to be placed on the barricades, but then complaints were filed with the City; some were thrown out and there is another current one that the City doesn’t know what to do with. The new graphics are on hold until they can get resolution. Donna Vaccarino (audience): She is concerned about the schedule and volume of trucks coming in to deliver construction materials. Michael: He will return and update us on that. Marge Gold (audience): Will they open temporary offices in the Paliskates site? Michael: This may happen in the future. Daphne Gronich (audience): Traffic on Sunset going east (coming from west of Temescal Canyon) is a significant problem for people going to schools such as Revere. She suggests adjusting the hours when big hauls occur. Michael: They will be mindful of this.

11.    New Business – None.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 8:55pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Gil Dembo, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, David Card, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg.

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick, Susan Payne.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Amir Ebtehadj, Sharon Kilbride,  Carol Bruch, David Peterson, Quentin Fleming, Ted Mackie, Kevin Niles.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:02pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chris Spitz read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience. The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Maryam deemed the minutes of March 23, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 4/27/17. 1) Moku Sushi CUB, along with (new) Kayndaves and (tentative) Chipotle CUBs & broader discussion on alcohol in Pacific Palisades. 5/11/17. 1) Bernheimer Gardens new property owners & DWP discussion of temp pole top distribution station at Sunset and Marquez (lower); 2) Fire Station Captains on Duty, Valdez & Mitchell, to talk about Fire Service Day on 5/13 and the state of fire and emergency related issues in Pacific Palisades; 3) MKPOA/PPCL presentation; 4) Nominating Committee announcement of nominees for PPCC officers, 2017-2018 term. 5/25/17. 1) City Attorney Mike Feuer as guest.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $40,078. Since the last meeting our general liability premium was paid in the amount of $800.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Maryam announced that Stephanie Cohen, Field Representative to Assemblymember Bloom, will be leaving that position and moving on to become District Director, Westside/Metropolitan Region for Supervisor Sheila Kuehl.

7.1.2.    Maryam explained the purpose and role of PPCC on Nextdoor. We are endowed with this platform through EmpowerLA, for the purpose of imparting information to the public. We do not generally take part in exchanges on Nextdoor but use our platform as a way to put out information related to the PPCC and our work. Maryam explained she does not have a personal presence on Nextdoor.

7.1.3.    Maryam reported that WRAC is working to arrange an LAUSD Candidates Forum on the Westside for April 23, 2017 at University High School.

7.2.    From Officers – None.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large).  Lou announced that the PAPA parade theme submissions are open. The parade is coming up. Theme suggestions are due by 5/5/17.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Sarah Conner (PPRA).  Sarah gave an update on the temporary pole top distributing station (TPTDS), explaining that an appeal was filed with the CCC.

7.4.2.    David Card (PP Rotary).  David announced that there will be two spring events at Rustic Canyon on April 15: the Spring Festival, 11am-2pm, and Crafters Fair, 11am-4pm.

7.4.3.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA).  Rick announced the Eggstravaganza at the Palisades Recreation center coming up on Sunday April 16. Maryam interjected the recent addition of the Minors Basketball Champions to the 4th of July Parade. Rick affirmed that they had won their league championship and would be seeking to be included in the parade, alongside the PPBA Baseball teams.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Captain III, Tina Nieto – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”).

Captain Nieto reported that Officer Redican (“Rusty”) previously rode a bike because he liked riding a bike and now Rusty is going into the Z unit where he will be in a car. His interactions will be recorded. Rusty will continue to be present in the Palisades. Nothing has changed with Rusty’s coverage of the Palisades. He will be more visible in a black and white vehicle. The Transient Unit will be coming to the Palisades earlier in the day. Palisades has a dedicated A Car. The Z Unit is the unit that will continue to patrol the beach, and will not be pulled out of the Palisades. Captain Nieto suggested we work to gain a dedicated beach unit (“fixed position”) to ensure the beach is protected year-round. She has to reallocate some of her resources to other beaches, like Venice, to ensure that those trouble spots across her command are covered. A “fixed position’ beach patrol that is budgeted would be the way to keep this year-round detail along our shoreline. Captain Nieto noted that the shoreline patrol unit is a beach detail, not a bike detail per se.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors.

7.6.1.    Amir Ebtehadj (Youth Advisor) announced that Friday April 21st is Earth Day; on April 23rd there will be a beach clean up with St. Matthew’s. He ceded the floor to Lilliana Zar, who reported there will be a Science March on April 22nd at Pershing Square in connection with Earth Day. Lilliana is a Youth Ambassador for the March and is part of the national student outreach team. There is a March going on in every continent. Palisadian and March leader, Andrea Muller, also spoke and stressed that the March for Science needs additional volunteers. They are also looking for donations. Andrea is organizing a breakfast and a lunch. Checkers in downtown will be the starting point. More information is at

8.    Reports from Committees – None.

9.    General Public Comment.

Ileana Watchtel provided a statement and handout regarding Measure S.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.     New Business.

11.1.    Captain II, Valencia Thomas, from LAPD West Traffic Division.

Captain Thomas explained that the fatal traffic collision last Sunday involved 4 motorcycles and a vehicle driven by a minor. The accident resulted in a loss of life. Speeding has been brought to Captain Thomas’ attention. She has increased the number of officers related to traffic and speeding. The investigation regarding this accident is ongoing and will take a while longer. She is investigating allegations regarding groups of motorcycles driving fast. The investigation should take approximately 30 days or more. She may need to determine if there are engineering issues (hedges, etc., items impacting the flow of traffic). She suggested the department may embark on a community campaign to address safe driving, including increasing education at schools and within the community. She said she will form a “Strategic Team” to work with PPCC and the community on matters that involve traffic and safety.

Maryam asked if PPCC would be apprised of developments/conclusions within their investigative report related to engineering. Captain Thomas assured Maryam such results would be shared. Sue Kohl made note that the discussion of speed, safety and traffic, particularly as related to motorcycle gangs riding through, has been a topic of ongoing conversation. What can the department do to deter this behavior – maybe undercover cops, she asked. Captain Thomas said the presence of officers is a deterrent and she may increase them during the times the department has been able to determine the motorcycles pass through. Resident Paula Leonhauser stressed that speed has created an unsafe situation for this community. David Card stressed that the intersection of Chautauqua and Sunset is unsafe and suggested engineering may be needed. Quentin Fleming said he has been on the board for the last 10 years and this is an ongoing problem. Lou Kamer asked whether the Vision Zero Plan is implemented in the Palisades. Captain Thomas assured Lou that the Vision Zero Plan applies to the Palisades. Captain Thomas also reiterated that she will form the Strategic Team where community members would be asked to participate and she will work with PPCC. Both Chris Spitz and Maryam asked Captain Thomas to confirm that she would coordinate with PPCC regarding the Strategic Team’s formation. Captain Thomas assured the group that she would coordinate with Maryam.

Lou Kamer then made the following motion:

“Given the increase in vehicular speed, noise, and density in our community, including disruptive and dangerous driving by motorcycle groups and cars that is currently unenforceable over the long run, we ask for a cooperative taskforce to be convened between Palisades community leaders, residents, and members of our local and state government entities, to investigate and implement innovative solutions in accordance with the Mayor’s adoption of the Vision Zero plan to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. These new engineering, education, and enforcement standards will act to change the dynamic of a longstanding and tenable danger to our community by unsafe drivers while engaging our community. We ask for the support of this cooperative, information sharing and learning initiative from CD11, LADOT, LAPD, and the Mayor’s Office.”

Sarah Conner seconded the motion before the Chair had a chance to restate the motion. Maryam called for discussion to be deferred in the interest of time, stating that we had another agenda item waiting to be heard, which was an important community concern and had a motion that would need to be considered. Richard Cohen then moved to postpone the motion by Lou Kamer indefinitely. Richard’s motion was not seconded. Due to time constraints Maryam deferred consideration of the motion by Lou Kamer to the next meeting.

11.2.    PPTFH President and team.

a)  Kim Clary – Head of the Pacific Palisades Homeless Count sub-committee of the PPTFH. Kim reported that the 2017 Count was a success and that we counted fewer homeless individuals than the year before. The Palisades homeless count was conducted in January 2017, early in the morning to capture all those who have slept in the Palisades. The work of the homeless task force seems to have been successful, with the count reflecting a 53% decrease in homelessness in Pacific Palisades.

b)  Sharon Kilbride – Chair of the Enforcement Committee of the PPTFH. Sharon reported that volunteers locate encampments on the beaches and the bluffs working hand-in-hand with LAPD and Beach Patrol. Prior to PPTFH there were 57 established encampments. Currently, as of March 2017, there were only 10 active encampments. LAFD is working with PPTFH to provide signs. Officer Redican and Jimmy worked hand-in-hand to locate and provide services to the homeless. AB 109 will release more criminals and therefore PPCC should encourage the retention of Officer Redican – the enforcement effort (Beach detail). Officer Redican explained that the level of success is from input from the citizens. The amount of work that PPTFH does is critical. It takes significant time working with the homeless population to get them to accept services.

c)  Doug McCormick – President of PPTFH. Doug indicated that last year 35% of the homeless who were engaged are now off the streets. He indicated that a critical factor in that success has been a balance of the Beach Patrol with the Outreach Team from the organization previously called OPCC. He updated the Board on the general plan and activity of the task force, and cited the statistic showing the number of people helped transition off the streets and into services as a measure of their success. He stated that PPTFH would fail if this did not continue. He suggested that the Palisades should have not just two officers but a full-time team of one lead and four officers.

George Wolfberg then made the following motion:

“Given the crucial role that the discretionary beach patrol (comprised of two officers on bicycles) has had on the community’s ability to cope with homelessness and the progress made by the PPTFH in transitioning dozens of homeless individuals living on the beaches and bluffs of Pacific Palisades out of homelessness, Pacific Palisades Community Council urges the City of Los Angeles to fund full time shoreline detail as a “fixed position” with a complete team of officers to continue the work that has been done thus far, and maintain the effective enforcement coupled with services strategy which has produced remarkable results.”

Richard Cohen seconded the motion.

Discussion: Patrick Hart provided specific examples of recent homeless activity involving fire starters and other dangerous activity. Hart stressed that Rusty was brilliant in addressing the psychological and strategic needs of the homeless.

The motion passed unanimously. Maryam announced that she would work with the Executive Committee, the Task Force and our police team to craft a letter that makes our position clear to our City Councilman as well as the Office of the Police Chief.

Police Commissioner Steve Soboroff then asked to address the board. He stated that there is a long line of communities that need resources and that the Palisades was simply not one of them. Still, he was impressed with our community’s ability to responsibly address issues regarding homelessness and policing. He highlighted that the PPTFH is an example of measurable results. He thought there may be a creative way with the Police Foundation to fund additional resources. He suggested we define what we need and raise the money. Get an LAPD t-shirt and wear sunglasses – it can serve as a deterrent.

Richard Cohen reminded everyone that we cannot raise money to acquire more police protection, but that we can raise money for more equipment. Maryam recapped the discussion regarding the need for police resources along the shoreline by reminding everyone that this was not a policing resource we sought simply for our community, but to ensure the continuum of enforcement along the shoreline from Malibu (where the Sherriff has a presence) to SM (where SMPD is robust) down to Venice and beyond where OWB focuses its resources. If we don’t have a robust presence along our shoreline, we will become a catch-all for transient and homeless activity, so this call for a fixed position line item for our beaches and bluffs benefits the entire City and not just this community.

11.3.    Due to time constraints Maryam deferred the two WRAC motions regarding City Planning and density to the next meeting.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:00 pm. 


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Chris Spitz, Sue Kohl, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Peter Culhane, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, David Card, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg.

Voting Alternates:  Steve Boyers, Susan Payne.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Howard Robinson, Doria Anselmo, Bruce Schwartz, Kevin Niles.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:02 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission. Sarah Conner read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Maryam deemed the minutes of April 13, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 5/11/17. 1) Bernheimer Gardens property owners & DWP discussion of temp pole top pad mount; 2) Fire Station Captains on duty, Valdez & Mitchell; 4) MKPOA/PPCL presentations; 5) Nominating Committee announcement of nominees for PPCC officers, 2017-2018 term. 5/25/17. 1) City Attorney Mike Feuer as guest.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  In the absence of Richard Cohen, Allison Holdorff Polhill reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $39,901. There was a transaction in the amount of $192 for the LAUSD forum.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Maryam reported that she has formed a new PPCC Land Use Committee (LUC), with Howard Robinson as Chair; members: Howard Robinson (Chair), Reza Akef, Richard Blumenberg, Sarah Conner, Gilbert Dembo, Rick Mills, Chris Spitz, George Wolfberg and Maryam Zar (ex officio).   See “Formation Memo” attached.

7.1.2.    The Chair announced that a possible Palisades Art Walk is in the works.  She had brought up the idea to then Chair, Chris Spitz, a couple of years ago, and has since approached CD11 for support. Councilmember Bonin has pledged that the Council District will waive the permit fees and provide some tables and chairs to assist the launch of our Palisades Art Walk. She suggested a joinder of efforts with the Pacific Palisades Chamber, since they are familiar with this kind of event. The Chamber of Commerce board has unanimously agreed to participate with PPCC. Maryam asked if any members had objections to PPCC going forward. There were no objections to the Art Walk to the joinder of efforts with the PP Chamber on the Art Walk. Maryam told members to expect the project to go forward with more information forthcoming. The Art Walk is now being considered for Fall 2018. Daphne Gronich (audience) suggested that Pali High student Zack Eastland, who spoke to the board about a possible graffiti art project, join a committee for the Art Walk. Allison Holdorff Polhill announced that this weekend at Pali High an art festival, Human Kind, created by the students at PCHS under the supervision of Nancy Fracchiolla, is taking place: 4.28.17 & 4.29.17, 7:30 pm and 9 pm, and 4.30.17, 8 pm.

7.1.3.    Maryam announced that the Fire Captains on duty will be at PPCC’s next meeting to discuss Fire Service Day and the Station’s work.  She would like PPCC to honor our firefighters with a certificate and asked board members sign a matted frame (provided) for the certificate to be presented on May 11th.

7.1.4.    Maryam advised that SLO Moore is requesting information from residents regarding beach overnight camping.  There is a challenge to an ordinance prohibiting overnight camping on the beach. SLO Moore has suggested that residents send emails laying out their non-homelessness related concerns related to beach overnight camping. SLO Moore can be contacted via email at; other contact information for him is on the PPCC website (Resources/Government/Other Contacts).

7.1.5.    Two letters reflecting the Board position on motions or discussion were recently sent to the City: (a) the motion to support a year round beach detail, (b) the outcome of the Shell Station discussion. The two letters are posted on the PPCC website [Documents/Motions & Positions].

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.2.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair) and Lou Kamer (At-large Rep) met with a representative of Bonin’s office (Jessie Holzer, CD 11 Mobility Deputy) regarding Chautauqua/Entrada/PCH improvements.  They reported that CD 11 has support from DOT regarding a lengthy list of items to improve our community including refreshing the paint, other traffic issues. Maryam clarified that CD11 had submitted a list of improvement ideas for PPCC consideration. That list was the topic of the meeting discussion. What transpired from the meeting was a need to involve Caltrans (since PCH is maintained by them). Maryam has already sent an email to ASM Bloom’s office asking them to engage Caltrans and place this item for discussion on the next PCH Task force meeting (which our Transportation Adviser, Patti Post and our Vice Chair, George Wolfberg attend representing Pacific Palisades and the PPCC).

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Danielle Samulon (Area 3 Rep) expressed thanks to all who have donated to the families who are victims of the recent house fire in Area 3.

7.3.2.    Sue Kohl (Area 5 Rep) gave an update regarding the Caruso project.  Hauling is down to two times a week. Caruso does not anticipate any delays. Everything is going well and as planned. By the late summer/early fall of 2018 the project should be completed. Caruso is working with local schools to contribute student artwork to the construction barrier, which will also include historical pictures of the Palisades. Caruso is donating monies to local schools that are providing artwork.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    David Card (Rotary Club rep) announced that on May 20th the 4th annual “All In For Kids Texas Hold‘em poker tournament/fundraiser” will take place at the Presbyterian Church, from 5-11pm. $200 buy-in is the minimum requirement. The prize pool is approximately $5,000. This is a joint effort between the local YMCA and Rotary Club which benefits various youth organizations. Registration at

David also announced that graffiti has increased at the mouth of Potrero Canyon on both a wall along the bluff road and a wall at PCH.. He has reached out to Debbie Dyner-Harris and she has pledged to contact (City vendor) Pacific Graffiti Solutions to come and clean up. Maryam said she was on the string and would follow up if she didn’t see anything happening.

7.4.2.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce alternate) reported that on May 7, 10am-2pm, the annual Expo & Exotic/Classic Automobiles Show will take place on Antioch/Swarthmore and Via de la Paz, with 74 automobiles, 32 booths, big reptiles, martial arts, a petting zoo, food trucks and music. On May 18, 5-7pm, there will a Chamber mixer at Taste.

8.    Reports from Committees — None.

9.    General Public Comment.

Paula Leonhauser (resident) reported there is a need for more police presence. She went to Fire Station 69 and they confirmed that there is nothing they can do directly. They do not understand why LAPD is not doing more as far as monitoring & citations. Maryam said she had talked with Captain Thomas to maintain the momentum on traffic enforcement presence, and hoped the visibility of enforcement would serve as a deterrent to violations of traffic laws. She said she was pressing Captain Thomas to commit to forming a strategic group working in conjunction with PPCC EC (plus) to help move things along now that there is a sense of urgency. Maryam invited Paula to participate with the PPCC. Tom Creed (resident) asked, “How do we address the configuration of Sunset?” Maryam indicated that this would be a difficult conversation, and could perhaps be had at a later date.

Lynn Hylen (resident) reported that on January 27, 2017, Mike Bonin passed a resolution to form a dog park working group for the Palisades. She asked for PPCC cooperation to make the group productive and effective.

Zach Eastland (PCHS student) talked about the increase of graffiti and acknowledged that young students are trying to express themselves. He suggested that maybe there could be a specific area where young people could be artistic. George Wolfberg suggested the possibility of Zach becoming a PPCC youth advisor. Maryam asked Zach to contact her.

Rick Mills suggested that PCHS driver education may be necessary.

10.    Old Business.

10.1.    Motion to form a traffic safety task force (Lou Kamer, At-large Rep).

Motion made and seconded at the previous meeting; discussion on the motion deferred until tonight’s meeting.  Maryam gave an update regarding her recent communications about forming a Strategic Team with LAPD West Traffic Captain Valencia Thomas.  George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair; presiding during brief absence from the room by the Chair) then made a motion to amend the previous motion as follows:

“Since the LAPD will be forming a Strategic Team to work with the community and PPCC to increase safety in the Palisades in light of recent events, and

As the function of the PPCC is to act as a community forum for exploring the concerns of residents and businesses in the Pacific Palisades on issues such as this;

The PPCC formally supports the City’s Vision Zero Initiative for eliminating traffic deaths by 2020.”

Lou Kamer seconded the motion. The motion as amended passed unanimously without discussion.

10.2.    WRAC-recommended motions re planning & density (deferred from the previous meeting).

Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus) explained that these two motions were originally recommended to the WRAC leadership by the WRAC Land Use & Planning Committee, on which she and George Wolfberg sit. The motions are now being recommended by WRAC leadership because the requested data will be important in the expected upcoming process of amending Community and Specific Plans. Chris stated that the motions are being made to the board by the Executive Committee, and that a second is therefore not required. Board voting on each motion was taken separately after discussion.

Motion A. “The Westside Regional Alliance of Councils [PPCC] formally requests that LA City Planning compute the maximum build out under existing zoning for low, medium and high density residential zones as well as commercial zones. These calculations shall include the highest possible SB 1818 and JJJ density bonuses, as well as Accessory Dwelling units [‘granny flats’] for each of the neighborhood and community councils in the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils area.” The motion passed unanimously.

Motion B. “The Westside Regional Alliance of Councils formally requests updated current figures on population and population density in the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils area and including a comparison to 2010 figures.” The motion passed unanimously.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Amendment of previously approved minutes (1/12/17).

Motion by Danielle Samulon (Area 3 Rep) to remove the last sentence in section 7.4.2 of the 1/12/17 minutes.  Motion withdrawn by Danielle at the request of Area 3 resident who originally had wanted the motion to be made.

11.2.    Recent CUB applications and general discussion of alcohol sales in the Palisades.

A.  Moku Sushi (proposed on-site sale/consumption of full line of alcoholic beverages; hearing date 5/8/17).  Presenting: Dafne Gokcen, F.E. Design & Consulting.  Daphne stated that Moku Sushi opened in 2014. The restaurant wants to upgrade from a beer and wine license to a full line of alcohol and change their opening time from 11am Saturday and Sunday to 8am Saturday and Sunday.   There will not be a separate bar and alcohol will be served at tables or the sushi counter with food service. Christian Irwin, property owner and local resident, presented information regarding their property and tenants. Mr. Irwin explained that he monitors his plaza and will be responsive to community needs. Reza Akef suggested that the PPCC evaluate CUB applications in the aggregate. Other members stated that the applications should be evaluated separately. Several members expressed support for the CUB application.

B.   KaynDaves (proposed on-site sale/consumption of full line of alcoholic beverages; hearing date 5/8/17). Presenting: Richard Herman, RS Herman Architects; Dave Light, owner/applicant. Richard Hermann stated that KaynDaves has enjoyed serving the Palisades beer and wine for the last 25 years. Dave is extremely responsible. Dave explained that the time is right to obtain a liquor license with the competition that will be coming in the near future with the Caruso project. There will not be a separate bar and alcohol will be served at tables with food service. There may be more traffic after the movies with the Caruso project and KaynDaves may want to extend their hours. Rick Mills, Sue Kohl, Chris Spitz, Howard Robinson, Lou Kamer and others complimented Dave and KaynDaves for being a responsible, family run restaurant and indicated support for the CUB application.

Sarah Conner moved that PPCC support both the Moku Sushi and KaynDaves CUB applications (onsite sale/consumption of full line of alcoholic beverages). Richard Blumenberg seconded the motion. A motion by Reza Akef to amend the motion to indicate that support was conditioned on there not being a separate bar in the restaurants was withdrawn by Reza after several members expressed the view that such an amendment was not necessary and/or not enforceable. During discussion of the motion, members emphasized that they supported the CUB applications because the restaurants were responsibly run, had been operating without incident for many years serving beer and wine, and their owners/operators were known to the community. The motion passed unanimously. No position was taken on the requested operating hours for either restaurant.

C.  General discussion of alcohol sales.

Discussion on a general overview of our disposition on alcohol in the Palisades was not had in any formal way. Members indicated that they perceive restaurants in a different class of alcohol vendors, particularly if the restaurant is family owned, has a track record of responsible operation, and with deep roots in the community.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 8:46 pm.

ATTACHMENT:  ITEM 7.1.1 — LUC Formation Memo

Pacific Palisades Community Council


Date:  April 27, 2017

Submitted by:
Maryam Zar, Chair, Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC)

Submitted to:
Howard Robinson, Chair, PPCC Land Use Committee (LUC) & the PPCC Board

Re:      Formation of PPCC LUC & Appointment of Members


The purpose of the LUC is to help standardize and professionalize the PPCC Board’s consideration of zoning and land use related issues by offering thorough, consistent and well-researched analysis and recommendations to the Board.


From 2010-2014, previous LUCs appointed by former PPCC Chairs reviewed and made recommendations to the Board on significant land use matters. In late 2014, the PPCC Chair appointed an ad-hoc Village Project Land Use Committee (VPLUC) for the focused task of reviewing the Caruso Village Project proposal. The VPLUC completed its work in 2016.

Pursuant to Article V, Section 4 of the PPCC bylaws, the Chair has authority to establish committees and to appoint committee chairs and members. On August 25, 2016, I appointed Howard Robinson to Chair a new PPCC LUC. I am now appointing eight (8) committee members, who are all versed and vested in local land use. The LUC can now begin committee operations.

Work of the Committee

There are a number of active City-sponsored land use policy initiatives and individual real estate development projects that will significantly affect our community. PPCC desires to effectively advise the City regarding these issues, which require a level of analysis that the full PPCC Board is not able to provide. This the need for the specific expertise of the LUC.

The following pending land use policy initiatives could be reviewed by the LUC:

  • Development and adoption of a Coastal Zone Local Coastal Program (LCP), including an updated Land Use Plan and a Local Implementation Plan
  • Review and update of the Brentwood/Pacific Palisades Community Plan
  • Review and update of the Pacific Palisades Commercial Village and Neighborhood Specific Plan
  • ReCode LA (updated City-wide zoning code)

Regarding individual real estate development projects, the LUC’s approach should mirror the PPCC’s policies. PPCC does not generally get involved in single family dwelling cases, except when variances or other code waivers are being requested. There are exceptions for cases of particular sensitivity or prior PPCC interest, such as the homes around the rim of Potrero Canyon. For commercial projects or larger multi-family residential projects, it is PPCC’s policy to review those projects only where variances or other code waivers are requested by the applicant, or when there is substantial community interest in a particular project. The LUC will review and comment on which projects or policies to address. Additional policies for the work of the LUC can be developed by PPCC upon recommendation from the LUC. There are numerous LUCs active in Los Angeles and the LUC can review their relevant policies.

One of the committee’s early tasks should be to write out specific policies and procedures in order for stakeholders to clearly understand the role and function of the LUC.

Committee Structure and Guidelines:

  • LUC to consist of 8 members, appointed by the PPCC Chair.
  • LUC meetings to be held monthly or as needed.
  • The LUC will be advisory only to the PPCC Board and would have no independent authority to speak on behalf of PPCC or the Board.
  • The LUC’s work and recommendations should adhere to the PPCC Guiding Principles, found at Appendix D of the bylaws.
  • Individuals eligible to serve on the LUC should include any Pacific Palisades resident, any representative of an organization with a Board seat per PPCC by-laws, or any person deemed by the PPCC Chair to have beneficial experience or knowledge helpful to the work of the LUC.
  • The LUC should include members of the PPCC Board as a representative or alternate and should strive to include at least one member who has in the past served on the Pacific Palisades Design Review Board.

Committee Members

The following people have been appointed to serve on the LUC:

  • Howard Robinson – Chair
  • Chris Spitz
  • George Wolfberg
  • Sarah Conner
  • Rick Mills
  • Gil Dembo
  • Richard Blumenberg
  • Reza Akef

These individuals each have unique and valuable experience in land use and/or real estate development issues and collectively will form a strong committee to advise the PPCC Board on the relevant issues outlined above.

I congratulate the Chair and members of this fine committee.

[See also on our website]


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Gil Dembo, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, David Card, Rick Lemmo, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg.

Voting Alternates:  Alan Goldsmith, Robin Meyers.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Carol Bruch, Dona Anselmo, Kevin Niles, Bruce Schwartz, Brian Deming.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair, Maryam Zar, called the meeting to order at 7:03 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Maryam Zar read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Maryam deemed the minutes of April 27, 2017 approved. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 5/25/17. City Attorney.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $39,556. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting. Richard also announced the passing on May 9th of long time PPCC Board member Ted Mackie — TCA Alternate, former PPCC Webmaster, Golden Sparkplug Awardee, PPCC “Treasurer Emeritus,” TCA board member and owner of Ted’s Palisades Bikes on Via de la Paz for many years. He noted that PPCC remembers Ted with fondness and gratitude for his outstanding service to the board and the entire Palisades community.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Palisadian-Post Signage has been approved by operation of law (the Permit Streamlining Act), per court order, following the failure of City Planning Department to act timely.

7.1.2.    Letter regarding motion to support Vision Zero was sent. [See website – Documents/Motions & Positions.]

7.1.4.    Maryam asked for volunteers from the board to serve on a newly forming Pacific Palisades Dog Park Working Group.

7.1.5.    West LAPD Traffic Division has deployed several task forces to the Palisades on Wednesdays and Sundays to try and deter reckless driving/riding and cite violators. Capt. Thomas has been in touch; and has assigned a lead Sgt (Eun) to communicate with PPCC (through the Chair for now), and lead officer Michael Basaker as our Traffic division liaison.

7.2    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice Chair) gave a PCH Task Force update.

The Task Force meets quarterly and is chaired by state elected officials representing districts fronting on PCH between the McClure Tunnel and Ventura County. Meetings usually are held in a government building. Because of the dedication of a safety beacon light at the Malibu Village Mobile Home Park, the task force decided to meet at mobile home park. The beacon is a robust stop light to assist pedestrians crossing PCH. Sen. Stern, Sen. Bloom and Mike Bonin were present. Senator Stern chaired the meeting. Councilman Bonin attended the dedication and needed to attend the LA City Council meeting so missed the Task Force meeting. Meeting highlights included a progress report on the City of Santa Monica’s project to replace the bridge that goes to the pier. George briefed the Task Force regarding problems at the highway intersection with Chautauqua and West Channel Road. Drivers frequently end up in the incorrect turning lane. The City of Los Angeles is planning to improve signage on city streets leading to the highway. George urged that Caltrans look at signage on the highway which is Caltrans responsibility. Senator Stern asked Caltrans to report back at the next meeting. Caltrans will be widening the highway near the Bel Air Bay Club next year to enhance bicyclists’ safety. The LA City Engineer gave a brief update on the Potrero Canyon Park Project. All necessary sign-offs have been received except for a highway right-of-entry from Caltrans for a portion of the project which will be constructed on the former PCH right of way. The City hopes to award a construction contract in about one year. George also announced that Entrada Dr. in Santa Monica Canyon between Adelaide Dr. and Amalfi Dr. will be reconstructed and repaved on weekends through approximately the Memorial Day weekend and drivers are urged to avoid the area.

George also attended the monthly meeting of the WRAC Land Use Planning committee. Highlights of the May meeting included discussion of planning around Expo Line stations and also along Pico Blvd. where residents are pushing back against possible highrise residential construction. The project near Exposition and Sepulveda, formerly known as the “Casden Project” was discussed. It is not known who is the developer or whether their proposal will be moving residential units 500 feet from the freeway for safety of residents from air pollution. A project to construct four homes and an auditorium on Sepulveda between the Getty Museum and Mountaingate is also in the works. Finally, the City is moving along with an ordinance to regulate signs on construction fences.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-large rep).  The 4th of July Parade Committee is asking for different floats per area within the Palisades. Children will be encouraged to design and build floats. To date funds are not available. Daphne Gronich stated that the Parade Committee cannot fund the floats and many areas can fundraise independently.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Dick Wulliger (PP Historical Society).  An event will take place on May 15, 2017 at 7 pm in Theatre Palisades. There will be a Powerpoint presentation on Los Leones regarding its past, present and future.

7.4.2.    Susan Payne (PP Chamber of Commerce; not present).  Richard Blumemberg reported that the next Chamber mixer will be held at Taste; May 18 at 5 PM.

7.4.3.    David Card (Palisades Rotary).   The Texas Hold ‘em poker fundraiser will take place on Saturday May 20 from 5 pm until late, with a $200 buy in. There is a new fence and cactus weeding & clean-up has taken place at the pump station landscaping at PCH & Temescal; this was an Eagle Scout project – deterrent cactus.

7.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives.

7.5.1.   Officer Veloz – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”).  Officer Veloz reported that crime is down. Burglaries are happening through the rear of homes. A surveillance system similar to Ring is advisable. West Traffic is working on the motorcycle issues. Officer Veloz provided a list with emergency phone numbers.

7.5.2.    Debbie Dyner-Harris – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, District Director. Debbie announced that the incoming Field Deputy Officer for the Palisades will be Lisa Cahill. Lisa was formerly with Tree People.

7.5.3.    Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, District Representative – Not present.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    Nominating Committee (Richard Wulliger, Chair) – Officer Nominations, 2017-18 term.

Richard reported that the Committee met and recommended all current officers be re-elected to a new one-year term. The Committee’s officer nominees are: Maryam Zar, Chair; George Wolfberg, Vice Chair; Richard Cohen, Treasurer; and Allison Holdorff Polhill, Secretary. Richard also announced that nominations from Board members are open until 15 minutes prior to close of the meeting of May 25 (Bylaws VII, Sec. 2).

9.    General Public Comment.

Paula Leonhausner outlined her timeline addressing alleged speeding Ruthless Ryders. She wanted to increase the police presence and ensure speeding was reduced. She presented a letter from Chief Charlie Beck acknowledging her outreach. There will be a “private” informational meeting organized by her in the near future (not open to the public). On Nextdoor, 50 to 100 people have expressed their concerns regarding Ruthless Ryders. Maryam stated that she is working on organizing a Town Hall – public meeting this summer – with Sgt Eun and relevant officers.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    [Dog Park Working Group.]

Maryam moved to support Councilmember Bonin’s motion to form a Pacific Palisades Dog Park Working Group & support PPPAB formation of such working group.

“Motion to support Pacific Palisades Park Advisory Board on the formation of a Dog Park Working Group, in keeping with the Motion by Council Member Bonin instructing Department of Recreation and Parks to work with CD11 to establish a community-based Pacific Palisades Dog Park Working Group, in order to assess potential locations, identify potential funding sources, and conduct community outreach for the creation of a dog park.”

Gil Dembo seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

11.2.    LADWP & Bernheimer Gardens discussion on Pole Top Distributing Station (PTDS) progress (LADWP) and pad mount request.

Owners:  Steven Sommers/Christopher Damon; additional speaker: Electrical Suntricity CEO Emil Khalil, PhD. Steven Sommers and Christopher Damon are new owners of a property adjacent to the PTDS location. They have accepted that there is going to be a PTDS adjacent to their property. Sommers suggested that rather than a PTDS they could have a pad mounted transformer system where power will be distributed on the ground on their property along Sunset. Sommers and Damon have agreed to grant an easement in perpetuity to the City of Los Angeles in order to distribute power on the ground. LADWP was about to put a PTDS in the public right of way adjacent to this property but did not have a coastal permit initially. 2,500 signatures have been collected to halt this project and look at the pad mount alternative. Sommers stated that the LA General Plan – Mobility Plan 2035 states “where undergrounding of such utilities is not feasible, all such new or relocated utility shall screened to reduce their visibility from the Scenic highway.” Specs for the pad mounted transformer were taken directly out of the LADWP handbook.

The LADWP rep presented regarding issues for the PTDS-198 Service Area. There is a need for reliable power but they are concerned about the amount of timeLADWP said they would have to re-engineer the substation if it were to be moved to a pad-mount at this juncture, and would have to re-start the permitting process, delaying the project in unforeseeable ways. The current path would be 3 months (without legal delays planned by the new property owners). DWP speculated if the pad mount is pursued it could take 12 months to three years before power is restored. Reza Akef disagreed with LADWP and indicated that this project could be green lighted. Reza disagreed that a CUP would be necessary. LADWP indicated it is possible for pad mounts to be used to service the larger area although LADWP will have to conduct further research on the required technology and engineering. LADWP also stated that  here will be multiple PTDS, 3 or 4, coming to the Palisades in the future. The pad mount could be conceived as more of a permanent solution.

Sommers argued that a unique opportunity has presented itself here for LADWP to take advantage of available land to try a pad-mounted option, in a scenic location that impacts Palisadians daily. Some board members argued for quick reliable power and an unimpeded path for LADWP to finish this PTDS; while others advocated for protection of views along Sunset and the preservation of the character of the Palisades without electric poles overhead. The At-large rep suggested a continuation of the pole-top as planned with the promise of a pad mount at a later date, when LADWP can complete the necessary engineering work and dismount the pole top. After a pause in which the parties went out of the room to discuss the matter further, Debbie Dyner-Harris returned to the room and reported that the suggestion was met with positive reaction by the parties and they have begun discussion toward that end.

11.3.    Palisadian Post signage.

Recap of recent events; course of action/discussion. Maryam reported on the recent court order approving a sign permit application by the Palisadian Post, for signage atop the 881 Alma Real building, which had been recommended against by the DRB, denied by the Director of Planning, and denied again by the West LA Area Planning Commission (on appeal). The sign permit was nevertheless approved, by operation of law, in an LA Superior Court decision pursuant to a lawsuit brought by the Post, invoking an obscure state law called the Permit Streamlining Act, which was triggered due to the inordinate delay by the Department of City Planning to issue a determination. The City has now been ordered to issue the permit and the City Attorney has declined to appeal. After discussion Rick Mills moved that:

“The Executive Committee of the Pacific Palisades Community Council write a letter to the owner of the Palisadian-Post asking him to show his support and respect for the community, which has demonstrated its objection to the sign by the denial of his proposed large parapet-level signage at the top of the Palisades Village Center office building by both the Pacific Palisades Design Review Board and the West Los Angeles Area Planning Commission.”

Richard Blumenberg seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Maryam stated that she would attend the WLA APC hearing on May 17th and speak on behalf of PPCC.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:00 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Gil Dembo, David Card, Rick Lemmo, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg.

Voting Alternates:  Brenda Theveny, Margarita Pagliai, Brian Deming.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  David Peterson, Kelly Comras, Bruce Schwartz, Ron Dean, Amir Ebtehadj. 

1.     Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:05 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Lou Kamer read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Maryam deemed the minutes of May 11 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 6/8/17. 1) Officer candidates forum (if necessary) and election of officers, 2017-2018 term; 2) Planning & zoning update & clarification by CD11 Planning Director Tricia Keane; 3) Traffic safety update by West LA Traffic officer in charge for the Palisades, Ryan Basaker. 6/22/17. 1) City Attorney Mike Feuer as guest. 2) Chipotle Palisades Village CUB presentation. 7/27/17 and 8/24/17 (one meeting only in July and August): topics to be announced. Summer Town Hall on traffic safety (date TBD). Assemblymember Bloom will also attend a future meeting to discuss state legislation (date TBD).

5.     Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $39,477.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Election of PPCC Officers, 2017-2018 Term.

Maryam reminded the Board that nominations by voting Board members of eligible candidates for officer positions (in addition to the nominees already announced) will be open until 15 minutes before the close of Board meeting (scheduled close 9pm). The election will take place on June 8, 2017. At 15 minutes prior to the close of the meeting Maryam asked for additional officer nominations. None were received.

7.1.2.    Recent information regarding the Palisadian Post sign matter.

Maryam stated that she attended the WLA APC hearing on May 17 and also submitted a letter which is on the PPCC website at The Commissioners unanimously voted to affirm the LA Superior Court order on the Petition for Writ of Mandate filed by the Post, holding that the sign permit application had been approved by operation of the Permit Streamlining Act.

7.1.3.    Chautauqua light investigation.  Maryam explained that the City has determined that they would put in a dedicated left hand turn lane signal.

7.1.4.    Beach Patrol.  Maryam announced that she received a letter signed by LAPD Deputy Chief Dennis Cato requesting a line item for a full beach detail not just for the Palisades but for all shoreline patrols. They have committed to sustain the patrol.

7.1.5.    Dog Park Working Group.  Maryam stated that Susan Payne and Lou Kamer are appointed to the Dog Park Working Group representing PPCC, and David Card as Adviser.

7.1.4.    Pali-Art Fair Update.  Maryam announced that an Art Fair is likely going to take place on September 10, 2017.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair) reported that the EmpowerLA Budget Day is scheduled for Saturday, June 24, 2017 at 8:30 am. George has attended this for many years on behalf of PPCC but cannot do so this year. Anyone interested in attending should contact George or RSVP to:

7.2.2.    Richard Cohen (Treasurer) gave a report on the recent CPAB meeting.  The Captain is attempting to get budget approval for $1.5 million for overtime to fund the beach patrol. She has not heard back. PPCC should learn soon. Plan B is to keep Rusty in the Z car.

7.2.3.   Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus) explained that PPCC has been advocating for appropriate cell tower regulation.  A new bill, SB 649, is being taken up in the Senate that will exempt all “small cell” wireless facilities from local discretionary regulation, except in historic and coastal zones. A resolution in opposition is pending in LA City Council on the grounds that the bill would strip the City of local control over these facilities. PPCC had written a letter in opposition to a prior iteration of this bill last year (AB 2788). Maryam and Chris have communicated with Senator Allen regarding this issue. He has asked for input on possible bill amendments and Maryam will reply.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-large).

Regarding the Chautauqua left turn pocket, Lou reported that he has put through a request for a left turn arrow. The initial results from a study by the City indicated that this was not necessary. Lou went back to the City and noted a number of near misses. Mo Bloforshan of LADOT re-analyzed the intersection and decided to put in a protected green, yellow, red turn light. Concerns were raised regarding back up of left turn lane into the flow of Sunset traffic. Maryam pledged to make sure the City monitors the lane and adjust light timing to accommodate the flow/stoppage of cars.

Lou explained that he presented a list of cross walk painting/upgrades to the City. LADOT has asked the PPCC to affirm the list. Priorities are: Swarthmore/Antioch; Alma Real/La Cruz; Via del la Paz/Antioch; La Cruz/Swarthmore; Alma Real across from Ralphs; Alma Real/Toyopa; Swarthmore/Bowdoin; and Albright/Charm Acres. Board members objected that the list seemed too centered in and around the village. Lou explained that these were initially envisioned as safe routes to school areas, concentrated in the village. Reza Akef (Area 8) and George Wolfberg (VP) argued that other schools such as Paul Revere and Canyon Elementary also were in need of upgraded/refreshed crosswalks. In conversation the board agreed that more input from various ‘Areas’ should be sought before the list is made final. The sense of the board was that the list was too focused on the village and needed more community-wide input/scope to better represent the needs of the entire Palisades. Maryam suggested, after listening to board input, that the first two items on the list presented by the At-large rep as a result of his surveying and research could be affirmed as priorities, and would reflect that to the City. She noted that the City progresses slowly and that this would give us time to consider/debate more options at PPCC, while still being responsive to the City on the issue of crosswalk priorities.

7.3.2.    Reza Akef (Area 8) stated that he has a residential project in development on the rim of Potrero Canyon in Area 6 that was vandalized by Pali High students who came up through the Canyon.  He explained that he cannot put up any six foot fence around the property until he receives approval of the Coastal Commission. He has hired a security patrol which monitors the property several times a day.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    David Card (Rotary Club).  David announced that the Rotary is awarding student scholarships at Paul Revere awards night on May 31st, as a result of the successful Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Fundraiser. Award winners receive $500 each.

7.4.2.    Richard Wulliger (Historical Society).  Richard announced that on June 8th at 12:30pm the annual Palisades Historical Society Membership Luncheon will take place at Aldersgate Retreat Center on Haverford. Eric Dugdale will speak on the history of Aldersgate and new officers will be installed. Richard also reported that PCHS student Shannon Lee received an award from the Historical Society.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Lisa Cahill – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, CD11.  Lisa introduced herself as the new CD11 Deputy for Brentwood and Pacific Paisadses. She is familiar with the District and was formerly with Tree People. Her email is

7.5.2.    Janet Turner – Office of Congressman Ted Lieu, District Representative. Janet reported that the Congressman co-sponsored the Modernizing Government Technology Act of 2017; he is on the Bi-Partisan Committee to Enhance Cybersecurity; he has worked on legislation regarding the Homeless Act for non-profits to provide legal services for Veterans. Congressman Lieu and his colleagues are presenting their own bold infrastructure proposal to create millions of jobs.

7.5.3.    Daniel Tamm – Office of Mayor Garcetti.

Daniel gave information about the Affordable Housing Ordinance – legalizing certain unpermitted units and ensuring housing is safe and habitable is one piece of a larger component. There is an Affordable Housing Linkage Fee – basically a trust fund for the development of housing. Mayor Garcetti wants to focus on Vision Zero and on fixing the streets. $25 million has been allocated to Vision Zero and $31-$34 million has been allocated to the “D” and “F” streets. Daniel suggested that the Palisadian Post sign is under litigation. Maryam clarified PPCC was under the impression that the sign has been litigated. Proposition HHH passed November 8, 2017. The Mayor is currently going to do an educational campaign about what permanent supportive housing looks like. An implementation roll out document was presented. Over the next two years an Open Space Vision Survey will take place.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors.

7.6.1.    Amir Ebtehadj (Youth) reported that the Paul Revere Talent Show is June 6th.  PCHS will have a series of concerts starting on May 30 and June 1.  June 8th is the PCHS Graduation. The Village School Graduation and St. Matthew’s Parish School Culmination are both scheduled for June 13th. PCHS also has Student Ambassadors; if you have an event where you need student volunteers please let Amir know.

7.6.2.   Ron Dean (Legal Advisor) commented on the Palisadian Post Sign matter and urged the Board to contemplate proper action against the City and the applicant. (See additional comments in Sec. 10.1 below.)

8.    Reports from Committees – None.

9.    General Public Comment – None.

10.    Old Business.

10.1.    Permit Streamlining Act/Pali Post sign matter.

Ezra Gale, CD 11 Senior Planner, presented information regarding the Permit Streamlining Act and the recent WLA APC hearing regarding the Pali Post sign permit. The Permit Streamlining Act was discussed. Ezra stated that a timeline prepared by Chris Spitz was accurate; the timeline is on the PPCC website ( He also explained that the matter has been litigated and the APC was required to reverse itself and grant the appeal because of the Court order granting the Petition for Writ of Mandate and holding that the permit application had been “deemed approved” by operation of law. Ezra advised that the City is now considering three steps to try and prevent another “deemed approved” situation in the future. First, it has been determined that the Planning Dept. does not have a proper tracking system for streamlined items, so the Dept. is looking into initiating an internal digital tagging system that would warn of upcoming deadlines. He explained that although permit applicants may not be asked to waive their rights under the Act, asking them to voluntarily extend the time for deadlines is another option for the future. The third solution would be to move the CEQA determination so that it occurs at the same time as the determination on the application. Chris remarked that she believed this would be the best way to solve the problem since the deadline is triggered by the CEQA determination. Ezra indicated that some of these options are implemented by other cities and Planning is determining if they can be implemented here as well. A digital tagging system can still be prone to error, so implementing all three options would be important to try and prevent the same situation from re-occurring. Ezra stated that in Council District 11 this is the first instance where this has occurred. He also announced that the City Attorney will not take up an appeal based upon their internal discussions. Ron Dean stated that the City should change the law and provide a 30 day notice of intent to file an appeal under the Act, in order to alert communities and the Planning Department of the impending application of the law. He also suggested that PPCC should file a claim against the Act. Maryam stated that all of our local control and suggestions have been dismissed. Daphne Gronich gave her opinion that the City should appeal. She asked if there is a revocation process. David Kaplan asked what the date would be to appeal. There was no direct answer to this question although Board and audience members believed it would be soon. There was discussion about the Court order, and Chris attempted to clarify that the judge made a technical decision based on a 9th Circuit Court of Appeal case having to do with the required language in the public notice having been satisfied at a certain date, thereby triggering the time allowed for the City to issue a timely determination.   Ezra stated that he will obtain information on whether the permit to be issued will be revocable.

10.2.    City General Plan and Community Plans post-Measure S/developments.

Report by Ileana Wachtel, former Measure S spokesperson. Ileana met with the Mayor regarding transparency. Their next meeting is on June 7, 2017 from 2 – 4 pm in City Hall. She said it is important to have community involvement. LA is losing its urban forest. Community input is important.

11.    New Business – None.

12.    Adjournment.  Maryam adjourned the meeting at 9:09 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar (Chair), George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair), Allison Holdorff Polhill (Secretary), Richard Cohen (Treasurer), Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Rick McGeagh, Leiauna Anderson, David Card, Richard Blumenberg.

Voting Alternates:  Eric Dugdale.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Brian Deming, Doria Anselmo, Matthew Rodman, Leah Cox.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair called the meeting to order at 7:08 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chair read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Chair deemed the minutes of May 25th, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 6/22/17. 1) City Attorney Mike Feuer as guest. 2) WRAC-Recommended Motions. 7/27/17. 1) Chipotle CUB. 2) Sam’s CUB. There will only be one meeting in the months of July and August. Those are currently scheduled for 7/27 and 8/24.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Chair announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $38,273. A check was written to the Palisades Parade Association since the last meeting.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    881 Alma Real/Pali Post Signage updates.

Chair announced that this labors on. There was unofficial outreach with no acknowledgement or response from Smolinisky (Post owner). The EC has now written and sent a letter to Smolinisky, per recent Board motion (letter posted on the PPCC website). Councilmember Bonin’s office assured our Chair just this week that local organizations did their work as they were expected to, and for an inexplicable reason the Planning Department dropped the ball by failing to issue a timely determination letter.

7.1.2.    Maryam thanked Bruce Schwartz for his selfless volunteer efforts to beautify Sunset and revive a neglected median with flowers and plantings.  She referred to him as a horticultural genius.

7.1.3.    Update on homelessness.  Chair announced that “Timmy” has left the Palisades beyond State boundaries.

7.1.4.    Chair stated that she was confirmed and sworn in as Commissioner on the City Commission for the Status of Women on 6/6/17.  She was appointed by the Mayor in April 2017.

7.1.5.    Chair reported that regarding the pole-top distributing station at Sunset & Marquez Pl., the Coastal Commission unanimously ruled in favor of LADWP and did not find a credible issue of substance raised by the appellant.  Next: Coastal Development Permit and Construction.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair).  George reported on the City Open Spaces meeting (6/7/17). The State of California mandates that Cities have an Open Space Plan. The Planning Department is motivated to update the Open Space Plan (has not been updated for 50 years). A task force has been created. Ileana Wachtel and others requested a public meeting. On June 7th George Wolfberg and others met with the City regarding the Open Space Plan. LA City has created a website:

7.2.2.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Chris reported on WRAC LUPC issues, including SB 649 (a bill to regulate so-called “small cell” wireless facilities in the public right of way and other property). SB 649 removes local discretionary decision making over cell towers and severely restricts local control. The bill passed in the California Senate by all but one vote; Ben Allen was a “No Vote Recorded.” Bonin’s office is opposed. A resolution in opposition is pending in City Council. WRAC LUPC recommended a motion in opposition to SB 649, which, if passed in leadership, will go to member councils for a vote, per WRAC process. Chris also reported on a WRAC LUPC motion, suggested by PPCC, that will go to leadership, regarding the Permit Streamlining Act. This motion calls for concrete measures by Planning to prevent further violations of the Act as occurred in the Palisades with the Palisadian Post signage (such as tagging of all relevant deadlines). Maryam added that per her suggested amendment this motion also calls for notice to the affected councils of all relevant deadlines. This was added in an effort to give notice, and perhaps help guard against, the operation of law overriding local control in the future. As with all WRAC LUPC-recommended motions, if passed in leadership this motion will come to PPCC for a vote.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-large Rep).

Crosswalk update, Vision Zero, Safe Routes to School. Lou reported regarding Vision Zero that the first year they had a 43% increase in fatalities. They have altered their system to identify “near miss” intersections. Regarding Safe Routes to Schools, he stated that this identifies safe routes from residential areas to schools. He also reported that community floats will be created for the 4th of July Parade. RING is the sponsor. See more float information at

Maryam reminded PPCC members to submit their input regarding crosswalks in their respective areas that they think need restriping, and should perhaps be added to the list of priorities to be considered by the City.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    David Card (Rotary Club) reported that at the bottom of Temescal an Eagle Scout has completed his project. David Card stated that Entrada was going to be closed again this weekend.

7.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives.

7.5.1.    Lisa Cahill (Palisades-Brentwood Deputy, office of Councilmember Mike Bonin/CD11).

Lisa thanked PPCC for welcoming her. Regarding the fire in Mandeville Canyon, she reported that Councilmember Bonin put a public spotlight on the availability of only one “water dropping” helicopter to battle the recent Mandeville fire, and requested that maintenance on additional helicopters be expedited. Chair noted a recent issue in the Palisades involving a homeless man with a dangerous wound who was loitering at the park and had sullied the sidewalk with what may have been contagious body fluids. CD11 was asked to call HazMat, but instead, park staff were asked to clean the mess. They did, apparently satisfactorily, but can we count on CD11 to be responsive to our needs, for example alert HazMat for us when need be, now that there’s a new FD? Reza Akef noted that gravel rocks are coming down hillsides and spilling onto Sunset. Patrick Hart suggested that Temescal brush posed a fire hazard for the upcoming 4th of July fireworks planned in the Palisades. Daphne Gronich stated that LAFD and LAPD were going to close Temescal during the 4th of July Fireworks. Station 69 is doing ongoing brush clearance inspections. Lisa said she would look into all and get back to us.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors — None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    VPCLC (David Kaplan and Sue Kohl, Co-Chairs).

David reported that 10 students won the art contest sponsored by Caruso for the construction barriers, with one student from Palisades Elementary being the overall winner. The art will be displayed on the part of the barrier wall facing Swarthmore, which was chosen because it is the safer side of the fence for artwork that may attract the attention of drivers who may want to view the art. He also reported that the 1st and 2nd parking decks of the project have been completed.

9.    General Public Comment – None.

10.    Old Business.

10.1.    [Traffic and Safety.]

Officers Ryan Basaker & Patrick O’Dea joined PPCC to speak about enforcement efforts for traffic and safety in Pacific Palisades.  Ryan Basaker reported that he and Officer Patrick O’Dea are assigned to the Palisades area. Task Forces comprised of four officers have been successful dealing with motorcycle issues. Officer Patrick O’Dea reported that motorcyclists congregate in the valley or in Hollywood from all over California. Since the recent fatality, there have been more task forces covering this area. Multiple bikes have been impounded and many tickets have been handed out. There are limited amount of funds for these details and they are trying to get overtime details to try and work on Wednesday night to combat the motorcycle issue.

Over the course of 24 hours they conducted a speed survey east of Palisades Drive. The survey found 6,884 cars with an average speed of 33.8 mph. The highest speed was 58 mph. 85th percentile of the vehicles was 38 mph. Richard Cohen suggested that our community should recognize that the officers are constrained by the law and resources. A discussion ensued regarding additional penalties for cyclists riding together and intending to break the law. Speed surveys are expired and need to be conducted as soon as possible.

10.2.    [Planning, Zoning, Baseline Mansionization.]

Tricia Keane – Director of Planning, office of Councilmember Mike Bonin/CD 11.  Tricia joined PPCC to report on and discuss planning issues, zoning and Baseline Mansionization matters. She reported that the Palisades has coastal zones, “flat” zones, hillside zones and coastal zones with hillsides. Hillside and coastal is dependent upon land that was re-zoned. The new plans apply to R1 zones. Flat R1 zones buildings are required to meet an encroachment plane. As buildings get taller, there are regulations to maintain light and air. Most of the Palisades changed to an R1V1 zone. Lot size determines the size of the home. Tricia indicated that the planning is outlined for single family dwellings and a link will be provided to Chair. She gave the ZIMAS website:

Tricia also reported that regarding SB 649 (small cell wireless facilities bill), Councilmember Bonin shares the community’s concerns and believes that the bill does not support local control. He will be writing letters to the Assemblymembers who represent constituents of CD11, including Assemblymember Bloom.

Reza Akef raised a concern regarding whether LADWP has the proper infrastructure to handle requests for singular home transformers. LADWP requires transformers for each new home built.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Tim Harter, Sr. Field Representative, Assemblymember Bloom – was to discuss housing bills proposed by the ASM, and those being considered at the Assembly; as well as discussion on recent cell tower developments at the State level — Not in attendance. Chair will reschedule.

11.2.    Officer Elections.

Doria Anselmo & Brian Deming, non-voting board members, served as ballot counters.  Maryam announced that PPCC’s accountant was asked to attend per the bylaws but was not able to attend. Ballots were distributed and the vote taken. Maryam stated that 20 voting members were present and 11 (a majority) were needed to elect each officer, per the bylaws. After counting the votes, Brian announced the vote totals as follows: Maryam Zar, Chair – 19 votes, George Wolfberg, Vice Chair – 20 votes, Richard Cohen, Treasurer – 19 votes, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Secretary – 20 votes. The Chair thanked the counters and the Board, and announced that all officers have been re-elected for the 2017-2018 term, which begins on July 1, 2017.

12.    Adjournment.  The Chair adjourned the meeting at 8:53 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Sue Kohl, Cathy Russell, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Leiauna Anderson, Sarah Conner, Danielle Samulon.

Voting Alternates:  Susan Payne, Leah Cox, Carol Bruch, Kelly Comras, Brenda Theveny.

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Brian Deming.

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:04 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Sue Kohl read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: The Chair deemed the minutes of June 8, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 7/27/17. 1) Chipotle CUB. 2) Sam’s Restaurant CUB. 3) WRAC-Recommended Motions – (a) Open Space Element/GP Process Transparency, (b) Planning Bulletins, (c) Department of City Planning Safeguards. 8/24/17. 1) ASM Bloom Field Deputy Tim Harter and new Pacific Palisades Field Deputy, Melissa Kaufler – (a) Housing Bills (b) Cell Tower regulation (SB 649) status & commitment to local controls. 2) Sgt. Eun, from West LAPD Traffic. There will only be one meeting in the months of July and August.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  The Chair announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Deferred due to Richard Cohen’s absence. The Chair announced that there were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    PAPA wagon+ (4th of July parade).  The Chair announced that PPCC will have a larger wagon than usual in the parade. If any board members would like to ride there is room for 6 more. Daphne Gronich reported that PAPA still needs volunteers, primarily banner carriers.

7.1.2.    881 Alma Real/Pali Post Signage updates.  The Chair indicated that a further update will be given at the next meeting.

7.1.3.    STRs/Home Sharing Ordinance update.  A letter approved by the EC is available at

7.1.4.    DWP fence construction at Marquez site.  The Chair explained that the fence around the site will be fortified.

7.1.5.    DOT (Caltrans) study on possibilities for adding 3rd left turn lane from Temescal to PCH. The Chair stated that DOT (Caltrans) is doing a study on the possibility of adding a 3rd left lane on Temescal Canyon at PCH (southbound). See alternatives at

7.1.6.    Discussion with LAPD Sgt. Eun following Officer Basaker and O’Dea presentations; update regarding speed surveys and funding for task forces.  The Chair has had discussions with Sgt. Eun about the surveys and funding. He will attend our August meeting.

7.1.7.    Update from LAPD Dep. Chief of Police, Dennis Kato, regarding additional officer deployment on bus routes and reinforcement of beach patrol during busy summer months. Dep. Chief Kato has asked to deploy officers on bus routes to stem the flow of homelessness when it poses a health and safety risk and he supports reinforcement of the beach patrol during the summer.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Cell tower regulation (SB 649) update.  Chris announced that a letter in opposition to the bill was approved by the E.C. and sent to Assemblymember Bloom ( We recently learned that the bill will be heard in the Assembly Local Government Committee on June 28 and that comments to the Committee were due as of June 22; a second letter was then sent to the Committee and to ASMs Bloom and Ridley-Thomas, both of whom are members of the Committee ( Opposition letters have been sent by some of our members, including PPRA and Peter Culhane. Strong opposition has also been submitted by the County of Los Angeles, Councilmember Koretz and Councilmember Bonin, as well as by WRAC (letters on PPCC website under Resources/Presentations to PPCC). The City of Los Angeles has not weighed in yet because a resolution in opposition is still pending in committee and hasn’t been voted on. Chris will keep everyone informed of the status.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Carol Bruch (Area 4 first alternate).

Carol reported in Rick Mills’ absence that a meeting recently took place with 25 neighbors in the Las Pulgas Canyon area, at which another resident, Cosimo Pizzulli, presented plans for development of 8 plots. She explained that he is seeking approval in concept for the development from the Planning Dept. He does not plan to build the buildings himself, but if approved the plans would be available to the purchaser who would have to go through the Planning process under new rules. Cosimo filed his application under the old rules. He stated that he is not pushing any of the limits (whether under old or new rules) and is being more conservative. Some of these plots are on septic tanks and Cosimo told neighbors that he proposes to build sewer lines connected to the City line. The plan would be for the new lines to be privately owned. Neighbors expressed concern about geological issues; Cosimo informed them that no new caissons are needed and the geology is safe. The neighbors will be meeting to study old files related to development and geology of the area. Brenda Theveny stated that the files are over 30 years old; there are many old geological studies and documents they will need to review. Carol also announced that Cosimo will seek approval from the Civic League at its June 26 meeting at 7:30pm in the Methodist Church. Sarah Conner asked whether hydrological issues will be addressed. Carol explained that the neighbors will be looking at all concerns related to a creek in the area and the stability of the canyon and road. She indicated that Cosimo maintains that the area where houses will be located along Marquette is distant from where the slope into the canyon is located, but residents who attended the meeting are deeply concerned about geologic safety, the impact on the road and the installation of a private sewer line as opposed to a City-managed sewer line.

7.3.2.    Leah Cox (Area 2 second alternate).

In Peter Culhane’s absence, Leah reported that Peter attended a recent meeting with Dave Dwyer (chair of the Highlands Presidents Council), Lisa Cahill of CD11, and Bruce Schwartz of PRIDE. They discussed several issues involving graffiti, street signage, illegal signs, dead trees, overgrown trees, unsafe structures, broken chain link fencing, a utility pole that has been in a right of way for 12 months, the trail head at 16701 Via la Costa, and standing water in swales in canyon areas in the Highlands off of Palisades Dr. These swales have never been cleaned out. There is a great deal of water there and concern about mosquitos and the Zika virus. This is a public health hazard. Lisa Cahill reported that Vector Control inspected the swales and initially found no mosquitos. A supervisor will return for further inspection. The plan is to drain the smaller areas first. Some of the larger ones are actually 1/4 acre ecosystems and funds will have to be budgeted over the next year to take care of these.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce).

Update on Chamber and Dog Park Working Group. Susan reported that the first meeting of the Dog Park Working Group took place on June 15 at CD11. Four officials from Rec & Parks (RAP) were present and all said it was important that they be there. Six Working Group members were there. There was discussion about what people are looking for and funding for a dog park, which will be very expensive. A new dog park will be going in on Veteran near Wilshire. There are 8 pages of City requirements for a dog park, including a prohibition on siting within 150 ft. from any house. The new dog park was approved even though it didn’t meet all of the City requirements. The Working Group is looking at all dog parks and investigating sites in the Palisades. They have ruled out several in advance. The dog park would most likely be located under a lease on land owned by RAP or CalTrans. The RAP officials at the meeting indicated they were excited about the possibility of a Palisades dog park. The meeting was very positive and everyone feels the dog park possibility is closer than it’s ever been. Dog park advocate Leslie Campbell (audience) stated that while they are encouraged, this is still a long process and there are no guarantees. Susan explained that sites that were ruled out include the fire road at top of Lachman; Temescal Gateway Park; the DWP site on Marquez; an area north of the Highlands Plaza on Sunset; and the old Bernheimer lot (now purchased by new owners). She stated that a possible location may be on Temescal Canyon Road south of the high school. The discussions will continue.

Other announcements from Susan.  1) The 20th annual Palisades Sidewalk Sale will take place on Saturday June 24th in the Village. There will be deep discounts and everyone is invited.  2) Caruso has signed a lease with Cinepolis to manage the Bay Theater; Cinepolis is a luxury theater operator based in Dallas. They are very successful and operate 16 theaters at this time, including one at a Caurso development in Westlake.

7.4.2.    Barbara Marinacci (Palisades Beautiful).

Report on illegal dumping. Barbara explained that a fatal, fungal tree disease caused by tiny beetles smaller than fleas is killing off over 100 species of trees. The disease is spreading and has hit Brentwood. The mission of Palisades Beautiful is to plant trees and it wants to keep live trees in our area. Barbara stated that she’s not sure if the dumping of tree stumps and cut wood on Temescal Canyon Road is illegal but it is not being monitored. She explained that the problem is that the fungal disease is being transported by the beetles and the disease is spread in cut wood. There was discussion about the fact that many residents view the dumping of wood on Temescal as a positive tradition in the Palisades; however, residents may not be aware of the problem of cut wood spreading the fatal disease. Lisa Cahill of CD11 stated that she will look into this with experts at Tree People. She indicated that the beetle disease is pervasive statewide and there is no real solution at this time other than minimizing the amount of wood being left around.

7.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    Stephanie Cohen, District Director, West-Metro LA Field Office (Office of LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl).  Due to time constraints Stephanie was unable to stay and give a report. The Chair welcomed her and invited her to return in August.

7.5.2.    Lisa Cahill, Palisades-Brentwood Field Deputy, Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin.

Lisa gave several announcements: 1) The Brentwood newsstand lease was not renewed by Whole Foods; Bonin wrote letter of support and there will be a gathering/celebration at the newsstand this Saturday with a petition to try and urge Whole Foods to let the newsstand remain.  2) Hazmat concern and/or other emergency situations involving boulders and rocks spilling into roadways: We should used the same 800 numbers we already know, plus 311; the City will try to triage and take care of problems as soon as possible; call Lisa if the issue is not being handled quickly enough. Daphne Gronich (audience): 311 is not being monitored as frequently on weekends; what should we do in those situations? DWP has a 24 hour customer service line, but Daphne said she couldn’t get through that line either. 3) The Santa Monica Fire Dept. will conduct training exercises next week in Potrero Canyon; there will be 3 hour shifts, with trucks and helicopters; Lisa doesn’t know exact dates but will try and find out for us. 4) The presence of swales in the Highlands off of Palisades Dr. with standing water is a priority and CD11 is working on that. There are no mosquitoes presently according to Vector Control. A supervisor will come out tomorrow to look at all the sites. The work will be coordinated with all departments. 5) Asilomar: this is in the first phase of dewatering and there will be community meetings and more information provided. 6) Great Streets project on Venice and Safety projects on Vista del Mar: some constituents are happy and some aren’t.

Chris thanked Mike for his outstanding letter re SB 649; Lisa will convey the message.

The Chair said that LAPD thinks that if more task forces can be implemented this might impact motorcycle activity. However, they need overtime funding for the task forces (otherwise they will be diverted, funding for task forces will run out and motorcycle activity will increase). She asked Lisa to follow up and let us know if it’s an option for us to secure special or overtime funding for these task forces to operate from the 405 to PCH; Lisa will convey the message.

7.5.3.    Daniel Tamm, Westside Area Representative for Mayor Garcetti.

Regarding religious tolerance, Daniel announced that the Mayor participates in many interfaith events. Daniel is also the Mayor’s Interfaith Representative and he has been working with an Interfaith Collective on “Days of Compassion,” which is realizing the intent of Prop HHH and Prop H – with a focus on the building of permanent supportive housing everywhere in LA. He stated that all communities should welcome the building of such housing on a variety of parcels, repurposed property, under-utilized real estate, etc. The City, County, LAHSA, local councils and interfaith groups have been working together on this issue. The Mayor asks for our support for the Housing Impact Trust Fund (“linkage fee”). The Fund is intended to incentivize the building of housing, with developers helping fund certain projects. This is now in a Council committee but there is not 100% support. Cathy Russell: would imposition of this fee discourage the building of housing? Daniel: studies have shown this would not happen; other cities are setting higher fees on development and they keep building. Daniel reported that the estimated revenue would be about $100 million a year. The goal is to build at least 1000 units a year. The Chair announced that PPCC may take up the matter of the linkage fee and whether PPCC wishes to support at the next board meeting.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees – None.

9.    General Public Comment.

Daphne Gronich (PAPA) asked that residents not call PAPA to complain if chairs are put out on sidewalks more than 24 hours before the parade. She also announced that they are shifting the fireworks to the pool side of the high school; parking and “no stopping” restrictions will still be in force. There is a need to keep the streets clear for safety reasons.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer, guest speaker.

Mike thanked the PPCC board for having him. He introduced our Neighborhood Prosecutor Veronica de la Cruz-Robles and emphasized that his focus is on neighborhoods. He also introduced Lara Drina Schwartz, a prosecutor in his office who had formerly worked with Stuart House (the Rape Treatment Center) in prosecuting cases of abuse. She has now shifted positions and is in charge of a program involving kids living in traumatized environments, in which according to recent science their brains don’t develop properly and they never reach what they were biologically intended to be. Mike wants to develop partnerships to intervene, interact and work on this issue.

Mike explained that he is one of three citywide office holders – the Mayor, the Controller & himself. The City Attorney essentially has three roles. First, he advises the City on every issue with legal aspects. He is also involved in civil litigation, either defending the City in lawsuits or affirmatively suing on behalf of the City, its citizens or the State. Mike has tried to take cases on the defensive side and turn them around to make a positive benefit for the City. He described examples such as the Wells Fargo lawsuit and suits against major retailers for false advertising regarding pricing, and against hospitals for dumping homeless. The third category of the City Attorney’s work involves prosecution of misdemeanors. These include domestic violence, elder abuse, drunk driving, vandalism and graffiti. They prosecute between 45,000-50,000 cases a year. An important measure is that they are reducing the likelihood of recidivism. In this category, has tried to lead the way in Los Angeles and nationally on criminal justice reform. He instituted the Neighborhood Justice Program, in which volunteers are trained in principles of restorative justice. He cited examples of individuals whose lives have been positively impacted by the program. The Neighborhood Justice Program has resulted in a less than 5% recidivism rate.

Mike also advised that he has formed a nationwide coalition of prosecutors who are working on the issue of gun violence.

Regarding homelessness, Mike explained that he has long been involved with the issue. As former Director of Bet Tzedek, he went to homeless shelters throughout the county. His pitch is that we shouldn’t do things the way we used to do. His office won a $6 million grant to coordinate mobile teams to go out on the streets and intervene with homeless before they enter the justice systems. He has also instituted homeless citation clinics. These clinics go out to neighborhoods throughout the region. They are organized in advance, the homeless are told when there will be a clinic, and they are given advice about low-level citations. The City Attorney’s office explains that it will work with individuals to erase their citations, but in return they need to perform community obligations for homeless services providers who come to the clinic. This has been a transformative program. Mike is also is leading an effort to transform vagrant hotels throughout the City to house the homeless.

The Chair thanked him and commented on his idea about using hotels; some are detrimental or not protective, and he is transforming this into something positive. She also acknowledged the benefits of the Neighborhood Justice Program, which she went through.

Carol Bruch asked what the City Attorney is doing about religious intolerance. Mike explained that he is personally involved in this issue. On Tuesday night he went to the Culver City mosque for Ramadan. He has spoken there before and also at many other mosques. He is Jewish and thinks this is really important. He also went to LAX on the night the travel ban was first instituted to try and secure the release of detainees. He explained that he asked the person in charge for their authority in holding detainees but couldn’t get answers to his questions. It is very important to him to prevent hate crimes.

Sue Pascoe asked how she can get Councilmember Bonin’s office to release emails she has been asking for under the Public Records Act since July 2016. Mike explained that the City Attorney’s office gives advice to City officials regarding the requirements of the law. The City aspires to comply with every law, including the Public Records Act. The City Attorney can’t direct City officials what to do; his office can only advise. He also stated that he cannot speak to what’s happening in this specific instance. He is the lawyer for the City and his client is the City. The City Charter says that the City Attorney is the lawyer for the municipal corporation of the City of Los Angeles (this includes the Mayor, the City Council and all City Departments). Councilmember Bonin would be his client for purposes of this issue. Mike therefore can’t state what his office may have told the Councilmember as that would violate privileges.

Sarah Conner stated that she is seeing more and more graffiti and asked what can be done about the issue. Mike stated that this is an important issue; graffiti often signifies gang activity. There is a number to call to report it. Chris Spitz noted that the number, including a phone app, are on the PPCC website under Resources/Government Contacts. Mike explained that his office engages in efforts to eradicate the problem by sentencing offenders to clean up graffiti. This is the “broken windows” theory of law enforcement; City officials seek to intervene to create conditions where it’s not ok to do the offending act, such as graffiti.

Donna Vaccarino (audience) asked whether the City allows for disclosure of ex parte communications.   Mike stated that he assumes she is speaking about a Planning Commissioner having meetings with one side. Donna asked what if a Commissioner stated he has had an ex parte communication? Mike replied that his office has given advice when that occurs; he cannot speak to this due to pending litigation.

Patrick Hart (audience) commented that he is interested in hearing about the task force going out onto the street. He stated that we are seeing an increasing number of very mentally disturbed individuals coming here from buses. How can we deal with this? Mike explained that Measure H is the county initiative that will provide $1 billion over time for homeless services. There have been some efforts in the past to take teams to the streets for intervention. The County Supervisors have authorized funds for more of this activity. A complement of mental health advocates is needed and that will be provided through Measure H. Believes they will be deployed in the next few months. The Chair described what PPTFH is doing in terms of sending out outreach workers to work with the homeless. How can we be assured that we get the mental health component? Mike suggested that we work with Sheila Kuehl’s office because the County oversees Measure H.

Ted Weitz (audience) asked in regard to the Pali Post sign issue whether the City Attorney has authority to file a civil nuisance suit if an over-illuminated large sign is being maintained contrary to community standards. Mike explained that his office has brought nuisance actions in cases involving serious matters such as homes selling cocaine or other drugs but hasn’t done so to his knowledge in a case involving a sign. He would have to look at the specific attributes of the sign to see if it would warrant a nuisance action. Regarding this particular sign, Mike further explained that the judge said the City Departments involved took too long and therefore the permit was deemed approved. His offices very much wants to be a constructive player to make sure it doesn’t happen again in the future. Again, however, he can’t direct City Departments to do anything. He has instructed his risk management attorneys to work with the City Departments to prevent problems from occurring later on. The Chair asked whether we could have been told earlier on that this had been going on in court. Mike responded that there might be ways to do that going forward. The Chair also asked if there is a counterpart to Veronica (the Neighborhood Prosecutor) regarding civil issues. Mike explained that they don’t have resources to hire extra people to be a counterpart to Veronica regarding pending civil litigation. Chris Spitz asked whether CD11 would have been told about the sign lawsuit when it was filed; Mike replied that he didn’t know.

Carol Bruch asked whether there are any plans to make various forms of funding available to condo owners and others for seismic retrofitting. Mike replied that didn’t know. Daniel Tamm added that he also didn’t know the answer but can find out.

Donna Vaccarino (audience) commented in regard to the sign issue that she doesn’t understand how the City Attorney could have presented incorrect information to the judge. Mike responded that he isn’t aware of any incorrect information being proffered in that case. He hopes that when his lawyers go to court they provide precise, accurate information. The City Attorney would never give incorrect information knowingly.

An audience member asked about using vagrant hotels for the homeless; is there a pilot program and who is the coordinator? Mike stated that they are still sorting this out to make the program take place. Capri Maddox is his special assistant in his office who is working on this. The goal is to have the hotel program in place soon, within 2 or 3 months. The Chair and board thanked Mike for his presentation.

12.   Adjournment.  The Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:07 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, Chris Spitz [acting Secretary], Richard Cohen, George Wolfberg, Sue Kohl, Cathy Russell, Barbara Marinacci, Sarah Conner, Danielle Samulon, Reza Akef, Gilbert Dembo, Rick McGeagh, David Card, Peter Culhane, Lou Kamer, Rick Mills

Voting Alternates:  Kevin Niles, Doug McCormick, Eric Dugdale

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Amir Ebtehadj, Brenda Theveny, Quentin Fleming, Matthew Rodman

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  The Chair read the Mission Statement. She explained that she would be mindful of time as the meeting must conclude by 9pm.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:The Chair deemed the minutes of June 22, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 8/24/17. 1) ASM Bloom Field Deputy Tim Harter and new Pacific Palisades Field Deputy, Melissa Kaufler – (a) Housing Bills, (b) Cell Tower regulation (SB 649) status & commitment to local control. 2) Sgt. Eun, from West LAPD Traffic. There will only be one meeting in the month of August.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  The Chair announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a current bank account balance of $38,115. He provided his annual Treasurer’s Report for the period June 1, 2016 through May 31, 2017. As of May 31, our balance was $39,477. Further information is provided in the attached Report, which Richard explained in detail. Richard stated that he is very concerned about the state of our finances. We are not receiving regular donations in the form of membership dues.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Stuart Muller recognition & farewell.

Maryam acknowledged and thanked Stuart, a longtime former board member, who is retiring and leaving the Palisades. Stuart served as PPCC Area 6 representative from 1994 – 2016. He spoke about his life, his experience and his work in the community. Several persons acknowledged Stuart with farewell remarks and praise, including George Wolfberg, Donna Vaccarino, Barbara Marinacci, Barbara Kohn, Eric Dugdale and Rick Mills. The Chair read a message from Norman Kulla. Certificates and thanks were presented by Janet Turner on behalf of Congressman Lieu and Lisa Cahill on behalf of Councilman Bonin.

7.1.2.    The Chair gave a traffic update from LAPD.

The Sunday traffic task force was on Sunday 7/9. It resulted in tickets (50/50 motorcycles and cars) and impounds. On 7/19 and 7/26 LAPD conducted Wed. night task forces. On both nights, the turnout of the problematic motorcyclists was very minimal, and no Ruthless Ryderz (RR) were seen in the area. LAPD did cite and impound a few motorcycles here and there, but nothing serious. Sunday activities have subsided significantly as well. On the last few Sundays, no RR were seen at all, just casual weekend riders.

7.1.3.    Affordable Housing linkage fee.  The Mayor supports this proposal and has requested the support of neighborhood and community councils. The Chair suggested that members contact her if they are interested in having PPCC take this up.

7.1.4.    Appointment of committees and advisors as of July 1, 2017.

The Chair announced that she is reappointing the LUC, which had its first meeting today. The members are Howard Davidson (Chair), Reza Akef, Richard Blumenberg, Sarah Conner, Rick Mills, Chris Spitz and George Wolfberg. She will advise on all other appointments in August.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair/Pres. Emeritus) – Cell Tower (SB 649) update.

The bill would eliminate local control over installation of cells towers in the public rights of way and on public property statewide. It is widely opposed, including by Assemblymember Bloom and Senator Allen, but it passed in the Senate and has already passed in two Assembly committees. A vote in the full Assembly is expected soon. Opponents will be asking the Governor to veto the bill should it pass in the Assembly. Chris has been working with statewide coalitions and WRAC members and will continue to provide updates.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large Representative).

Because of the recent power blackout, Lou is focused on continuing Flo Elfant’s work on emergency preparedness, and he is also moving ahead with safety and security issues apart from his role as At-large rep. He wants to educate the community as to what to do to prepare in an emergency. He is also concerned with various construction-related issues, such as dumpsters blocking streets, sidewalks being broken, workers leaving trash and urinating in public; he believes something needs to be done to protect our neighborhoods and quality of life. Gil Dembo reported that workers on a nearby development are using Los Liones Canyon as a dumping ground and also urinating in public. TCA is cleaning up. Board members suggested various solutions to these problems. The Chair suggested that Lou create an action plan.

7.3.2.    Rick Mills (Area 4 Representative).  Eight homes are being proposed along Marquette St. This has gone to the Civic League once and will go again; the neighbors are communicating with the developer.

7.3.3.    Peter Culhane (Area 2 Representative).  Congratulated Lisa Cahill, Bruce Schwartz and Dave Dwyer (Highlands Council President) for helping on recent problems in the area, including missing DOT signs, clogged basins along Palisades Dr. and other issues.  He also described several other “quality of life” problems that he’s been working on with the Areas 1 and 3 reps involving those areas.

7.3.4.    Cathy Russell (Area 7 Representative) – Aircraft noise update.  An amendment to HR 2997 is being proposed which would require the FAA to increase accountability by meeting periodically with residents regarding commercial aircraft noise. People are urged to contact Congressman Lieu to support that bill.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce alternate) – Not present.  In her absence the Chair reported that there will be a mixer on 8/24 at the dentist’s office at 881 Alma Real from 5:30-7:30pm.  On Sept. 5 there will be a Business to Business event which will include speakers Elyse Walker and the owner of Café Vida.

7.4.2.    Barbara Marinacci (Palisades Beautiful).  Temescal Canyon Road wood dumping — deferred to Lisa Cahill [CD11 Deputy] for the update.

7.4.3.    Rick McGeagh (PPBA).  Reported on extensive improvement work ongoing at the Palisades Recreation Center and park.

7.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives.

7.5.1.    Janet Turner; Office of Representative Ted Lieu.

Janet reported that the Congressman is on the Quiet Skies Caucus. She announced various prizes/contests and scholarships. She also left handouts for applications for admission to one of the service academies. Congressman Lieu is sponsoring the New Collar Jobs Act, which provides for re-educating industrial workers in cyber security skills.

7.5.2.    Lisa Cahill; Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin.

Lisa thanked the parade organizers for their great work on the 4th of July. The CD11 interns, including Amir Ebtehadj and another young person from the Palisades, are doing outstanding jobs. Regarding traffic: Mike has tried techniques to abate traffic issues on Vista del Mar and on Venice Blvd, with mixed reactions. Lisa encouraged viewing of a video on the CD11 website explaining what is happening with traffic. CD11 is also looking at variety of solutions if the RR problem reemerges. There is a spike in crime in Brentwood, but not so much here. LAPD is responding. Most are crimes of opportunity. Many City departments are working on fixing the drainage problem with the basins along Palisades Dr. Regarding wood dumping on Temescal Canyon: This has been going on for 35 years. The City is taking steps to fix the problem. It’s a pedestrian and traffic hazard. It will take time. The Bureau of Sanitation is picking up the wood. The Bureau of Street Services and Recreation & Parks are working on signage for enforcement. A long-term change in behavior is needed. They are working on providing an alternative for dumping and a long-term solution. The Chair acknowledged Barbara Marinacci for her role in bringing this to our attention. Lisa reported that there was a fire safety event on Haverford with LAFD. They looked at smoke alarms, which should be re-evaluated every few years. A fire review meeting took place in Mandeville. There will be a tree giveaway on Sunday at the Palisades Farmers Market. Mike will be there part of the time. The Chair raised the issue of the crosswalk on the east side of Allenford in Area 8. A work order was issued to eliminate one of the crosswalks. Lisa explained that the City decided that would be a good thing. She is not sure of the timeline. There has been no debate. It is believed this will improve traffic flow. Reza Akef disagreed with the crosswalk to be removed. Lisa stated that this is to be discussed further.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    PPCC LUC (Howard Robinson, LUC Chair) – Not present.  The Chair announced that the LUC held its first public meeting this evening before the Board meeting; information about the LUC and upcoming meetings will be posted on the PPCC website.

9.    General Public Comment – None.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Chipotle on Sunset – seeking onsite beer sales.

Valerie Sacks of Liquor presented, along with the manager of this location; he manages 10 stores, including Brentwood. Chipotle is seeking a CUB to serve beer as well as a Type 41 license from the state (beer and wine – there is no ABC license only for beer). They request our support or non-opposition. Chipotle describes itself as a hybrid-step up above fast food. They have a commitment to sustainability. They serve beer at hundreds of locations with no problems, including their store on the UCLA campus where patrons include students under and over 21. They have not been cited for ABC violations and there have been no complaints. Chipotle has systems and procedures in place to be sure beer sales are managed properly. They look for people who appear to be under 40 to card. This is based on human judgment. Cashiers are taught and trained for a week, and then validated by the GM. A card swiping system can’t be put in place. Persons under 21 can work there but the GMs have to be over 21. ABC regulations don’t require cashiers to be 21.

Rick Mills: Expressed concern about supervision over all customers. Would beer be allowed outside? How can they properly supervise patrons? A: It’s a good layout because it’s so small, and workers have good vision for anything going on. They will have staff making rounds checking and touching tables. Alcohol must be consumed in the store; there is a sign that you can’t take alcohol outside on the patio. Sarah Conner: How will you monitor the patrons and beer left on the table? A: They have bussers who clean tables regularly. Richard Blumenberg: Expressed concern with the layout, which is small, with shared tables. Q: Why are you applying only for a Type 41 license? A: They originally applied for a license to sell a full alcohol line (Type 47) for flexibility in order to serve beer and margaritas. Corporate then said they weren’t going to apply for Type 47 licenses any longer so they changed the application to a Type 41. Chair: Why are you applying to serve alcohol at all? A: Chipotle caters to people who would like beer with their burrito. Chris Spitz: Has eaten at many Chipotle restaurants in the region; all serve beer and she has not noticed a problem in other stores. How will the beer be served? A: Bottles are behind counter in a locked cooler. The cashier opens the bottles. There is a three drink maximum. The workers are taught to refuse service if the patron is inebriated. Lou Kamer: Understands this is a directive from corporate; described the number of establishments to be serving alcohol within 1000 ft. in the Village and asked presenters if they would feel comfortable if they lived here with another establishment serving alcohol? A: That depends on the operator. Chipotle has been established 24 years and has a good track record with almost no issues with alcohol. Sandy Eddy (audience): Has concerns about the increasing numbers, the proximity to schools and the volume of kids in the store who can’t be supervised. Julie (audience): Has lived here for 15 years; she is a young person exited about Chipotle coming, as it is a place where she can relax after work and have a beer in a casual environment. She feels it would be a wonderful addition to the community. Rick McGeagh: Is ecstatic to have Chipotle in the Palisades. The environment doesn’t lend itself to intoxication. Kids won’t spend $5 for a beer there. Richard Cohen: If a grownup wants to have a beer with their burrito, he has no problem with that. The beer will be locked up and patrons will have to go through a gatekeeper to buy beer. There are other places in the community that sell beer and other alcohol, such as CVS and the grocery stores, where kids are present but you must go through a gatekeeper to buy beer. Matthew Rodman: The layout is unlike any other restaurant, with a communal table where beer bottles could be left; in his opinion the layout doesn’t lend itself to beer sales. Q: What about the saturation point argument? A: It is unfair to single out Chipotle for that argument.

The Chair stated that there appeared to be no consensus. No motion was made either to support or oppose the CUB request and no action was taken on the matter.

11.2.    Sam’s Restaurant – seeking expanded operating hours and bar (full liquor).

Larry Mondragon presenting.   The owner wants to be open from 11am to 1am (the hours are now 6pm to 11pm). He also wants to add a fixed bar with 8 seats (6 bar stools and two wheelchair accessible seats/stools). They are doing renovations to move a restroom. Seating will not be increased; there will be no change in square footage, and it will continue to be high quality restaurant with a high Zagat rating. They are proposing three conditions for the bar: 1) the bar wouldn’t be open unless the kitchen is open; it is an adjunct to the function of the restaurant; 2) There will always be food available at the bar; 3) There will be no standing bar service; patrons must be seated to have a drink. Valet parking will continue. There will be no music or dancing. No complaints have been received from neighbors. Sam’s currently has a full alcohol license.

Gil Dembo: Are there arrangements for offsite parking? A: Yes, they have a valet parking arrangement, 200 ft down the street, in a lot on the same side of Channel. There will be a longer period of service; this not result in a more intense volume, because more people will be served over a longer period of time. Q: What is going on with the Hungry Cat (grey) building on the corner? A: It is empty and they are now looking for a tenant. George Wolfberg: Sam’s is his neighborhood restaurant; the food is fabulous and Sam is wonderful. Sam is on site. George hasn’t heard of any problems. Q: What time will the parking valet end? A: Valet service will continue to 1am. Cathy Russell: There have been complaints from neighbors about other restaurants, regarding noise and parking spaces; she is just raising a concern as there is proximity to PCH and residential. A: The zoning is mixed use and there have been no complaints with Sam’s.

Richard Cohen made the following motion: “We recognize that Sam has been a responsible operator and has not offended the neighbors; we would like to see our local restauranteur succeed, and therefore we have no objection to the Sam’s Restaurant CUB requests.” Second by George Wolfberg: Discussion of other nearby restaurants’ operating hours. Vote: the motion passed unanimously.

11.3.    WRAC-Recommended Motions – Deferred due to lack of time.

12.    Adjournment.  The Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:01 pm.

ATTACHMENT:  ITEM 6 – Treasurer’s Report

PPCC Treasurer’s Report June 1, 2016 – May 31, 2017
Balance 6/1/2016 35,944
Balance 5/31/2017 39,477
Increase in Funds 3,533
Regular Contributions (includes $2,000 from MS) 2,536
Operating Expenses
Rent 1,026
Insurance 1,315
Data and Election Related 2,399
Tax Prep 275
Misc 806
Total Operating Expenses 5,821
Operating Loss -3,285
Dinner & Tribute Revenue 15,706
Event Costs 8,888
Event Profit 6,818
Increase in Funds 3,533



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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, Reza Akef, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Cathy Russell, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Gil Dembo, David Card

Voting Alternates:  Susan Payne, Barbara Kohn, Alan Goldsmith, Howard Robinson, Margarita Pagliai

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Carol Bruch, Kevin Niles, Doug McCormick 

1.    Certification of Quorum.  The Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:05 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  David Kaplan read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: The Chair deemed the minutes of July 27, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 9/14/17. Sr. Crime presentation – West LAPD Detective unit; Leah Garland, Food & Water Watch. 9/28/17. Caruso Village Project update; Bylaws Committee, suggested review. 10/12/17. Sgt. Danny Eun from West LAPD Traffic.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  The Chair announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $38,006.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    Reappointing existing committees and appointing new ones – Deferred.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Richard Cohen (Treasurer).

Richard reported that he and Patti Post attended the PCH Taskforce meeting on 8.24.17. He reported that PCH & West Channel will shortly be improved in several ways including installation of new crash cushions and replacement of bollards which have caused damage to passing cars. PCH & Temescal – Caltrans in answer to a question reported that PCH is not wide enough to allow 3 left-turn lanes from Temescal Canyon west bound to PCH southbound. Potrero Canyon – State and City are working on state relinquishment of property on the inland side of PCH adjacent to PCH and Potrero so the City can operate and maintain the land as part of Potrero Canyon park . PCH west of Coastline Drive – LA County is working on establishing a restricted parking zone to discourage camping. A taskforce conducted on 7.19.17 to address motorcycle activity involved multiple agencies and was a reported success.

The Chair noted that at PPCC’s request, CD11 had worked with BOE to devise a list of possible alternatives when contemplating the creation of 3rd left turn lane. This can be found on our website, she stated.

7.2.2.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus).

Chris reported that SB 649, which would eliminate local discretionary control over cell towers in the public right of way and on public property, is moving through the legislature with a possible vote in the Assembly Appropriations Committee (where the bill is now in suspense) possibly expected next week. Assembly Member Bloom is opposed. 11 of 13 members of WRAC are opposed. The City has not yet passed a resolution in opposition. Chris advocates for all concerned to write letters to the Governor urging him to veto the bill should it pass in the Assembly. Chris also reminded the board that she has been inputting calendar information on the PPCC website; she asked all member organizations to provide her in advance with dates and details for any public meetings and activities.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large).

Lou suggested that PPCC has been inconsistent in approving alcohol licensing agreements. He recommended that rather than individually approve of alcohol licenses, PPCC should have a discussion and create a standard of review for CUBs. The Chair agreed. Generally, PPCC does not approve or disapprove of CUBs. Carol Bruch suggested that PPCC conduct research on other similar cities to determine whether they have specific ratios. David Card suggested that purveyors of the alcohol should be responsible. Susan Payne agrees with David Card. Howard Robinson suggested that CUBs are a discretionary land use issue and that this matter should be referred to the Land Use Committee to create a standard of review. Alan Goldsmith questioned whether PPCC was able to influence the City. When there is no consensus, the City does not look to PPCC. Richard Cohen indicated that most liquor licenses do not pose a threat to the community. Fine restaurants and a Vintage Market do not pose a problem. David Kaplan suggested if PPCC does not approve of the CUBs in the Palisades, people will consume alcohol outside the Palisades and drive in. Tom Creed (audience) complimented Lou for bringing this conversation forward. The Chair agreed to refer the matter to the PPCC LUC for a set of standard guidelines PPCC can follow in discussions of upcoming CUBs. She noted that the City looks to us for consensus, and weighs it heavily when/if we can show consensus in opposition. Otherwise, they apply their own standards of review, and hold public hearings to hear from individuals impacted in the community.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    David Card (Rotary Club).  David announced that Rustic Canyon Recreation Center is hosting its annual gala Rustic Night fundraiser on 9/23/17. To purchase tickets go to

7.4.2.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce).  Susan reported there will be a free Speaker Series Event on 9/5/17 from 7-9pm at the Women’s Club. Go online to the Chamber of Commerce website and register. Successful business owners of Café Vida and Elyse Walker will speak about how to develop thriving businesses.

7.5.     From Governmental Representatives.

7.5.1.    LAPD Officer Michael Moore, Palisades SLO.

Michael reported that crime is down 13%. He stated that Caption Tina Nieto has taken a new position as Police Chief of the City of Marina. The Beach/Homeless detail will continue to be deployed.

7.5.3.    Lisa Cahill; Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin – Deferred.

7.5.4.    Fernando Morales, Office of County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl.

Fernando reported that more monies will be going onto housing. Flex funds are back and available for homeless transitions. Multi-disciplinary teams will be rolling out into local communities; Women and Girls initiative; Movement away from Polystyrene; Conservatorship; $75,000 for each project.

7.5.5.    Tim Harter, Office of State Assemblymember Richard Bloom.

Tim explained that ASM Bloom introduced 13 housing bills because CA is not producing enough homes, in particular low-income homes. LA County needs more low-income housing. AB 1505 restores the ability of the government to takeover rental housing. AB 1506 allows for localities to enact rent control. AB 1521 increases funding for affordable housing. SB 35 stimulates construction of affordable housing.

7.5.6.    Allison Towle, Office of State Senator Ben Allen.

Allison suggested that ideas for bills should be submitted to the Senator. Local support of proposed bills is important. SB 35 (Wiener) allows for streamlined development of previously developed urban parcels for critically needed housing. Sen. Allen is running a package of bills known as Preserve California. SB 235, Judicial Ballot Designation – limits candidates’ creative job descriptions. SB162 prohibits marijuana merchandising. Sen. Allen and LAUSD Board Member Nick Melvoin are coordinating a College Application Day at Fairfax High School on 10/14/17 from 10 am to 1:00 pm. Volunteers are welcome to assist high school students with college essays and UC applications.

7.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.    Village Project Community Liaison Committee (VPCLC); David Kaplan, Co-Chair.

David reported that the Caruso Village Project is running on time. PRIDE will be involved in coordinating off-site harmonizing streetscape improvements with Caruso and other community organizations. The Chair has appointed David and Chris Spitz to represent PPCC in the effort.

8.2.    Land Use Committee (LUC); Howard Robinson, Chair.

Howard reported that the Committee had a public meeting today before the PPCC board meeting and held an initial discussion of the ADUs (granny flats) ordinance. He also announced that he, the PPCC Chair and Chris Spitz had a meeting with new Senior City Planner Debbie Lawrence to discuss Planning process related to the Permit Streamlining Act (PSA) and notice to PPCC of planning and land use hearings and deadlines. Debbie is working to institute procedures to prevent future invocation of the PSA and she has committed to relaying to PPCC all deadlines and hearing notices in short order.

9.    General Public Comment.

Leah Garland, Food & Water Watch, stated their group is standing together against neighborhood oil drilling. They have put forward a motion calling for studying the health impact of neighborhood drilling. Ms. Garland passed out a magazine entitled, “Drilling Down.” 628,000 people live close to active drilling; most are low income.

Faith, Food & Water Watch, stated that the largest gas blowout was in the San Fernando Valley (SFV). Playa del Rey has a similar gas storage facility to SFV.

10.    Old Business – WRAC-recommended motions; deferred due to lack of time.

11.     New Business – None.

12.    Adjournment.  The Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:02pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  George Wolfberg [acting Chair], Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Gil Dembo, David Card, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Brian Deming

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Vice Chair George Wolfberg (Presiding Officer in the Chair’s absence) called the meeting to order at 7:01 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Rick Mills read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: George deemed the minutes of July 27, 2017, approved as corrected. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 9/28/17. (1) Caruso Village Project update; (2) By Laws Committee, suggested review. 10/12/17. (1) Sgt. Danny Eun from West LAPD Traffic. (2) Stephanie Cohen, District Director, County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. 10/26/17. (1) PTFH enforcement and results report.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  George announced that the Agenda is as distributed with the exception that the report on scams by Officer Cho (Item 11.1) will follow Officer Moore’s report.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $37,952.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

7.1.    From the Chair.

7.1.1.    At the Presiding Officer’s request, Chris Spitz reported that Niall Huffman of the Planning Dept. has advised that the City Planning Commission (CPC) this morning approved the draft Commercial Cannabis Location Restriction Ordinance with minor revisions (none having to do with the buffer zones or distance restriction). The Ordinance will next go to a City Council Committee for review (date unknown).

7.1.2.    Appointing existing committees and advisors.

The Presiding Officer announced the following appointments / re-appointments by the Chair: The Bylaws Committee will be comprised of co-chairs George Wolfberg and Richard Cohen as well as David Kaplan, Chris Spitz and Allison Holdorff Polhill. The Land Use Committee (LUC) was announced on July 27. The Village Project Community Liaison Committee (VPCLC) will be co-chaired by David Kaplan and Sue Kohl and include a stakeholder member from Caruso (Michael Gazzano/Rick Lemmo), Susan Payne (representing the Chamber), David Peterson (representing PRIDE), Patti Post (Transportation Advisor), Chris Spitz (Chair Emeritus), and a representative from Council District 11 as Committee Advisor. Patti Post is reappointed as Transportation Advisor and Sharon Kilbride is reappointed as Homelessness Advisor.

7.1.3.    Appointing new committee and advisors.  The new safety committee appointment is deferred.

7.1.3.a.   Youth Advisor(s).  Position(s) currently vacant. The Chair will conduct community outreach and intends to appoint a PCHS student and another high school student from the Palisades (appointments subject to consent of the board).

7.1.3.b.    Legal Advisor.  Position currently vacant and a search by the Chair is ongoing (appointment subject to consent of the board).

7.1.4.    Housing & Homelessness.  Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) Ordinance; hearings scheduled (1st hearing Sept 25th, 5-7pm; 2nd hearing Sept 28th at City Hall) & community meetings are planned.

7.2.    From Officers.

7.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair Emeritus).

Chris reported that SB 649 passed this week by narrow vote margins in both the State Assembly and Senate. “No” votes included Assemblymember Bloom and Senator Allen.  The bill will now go to the Governor for signing. The coalitions in opposition are actively lobbying the Governor to veto the bill. Chris stated that PPCC will also write a letter urging a veto.

7.2.2.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair).

George announced that he attended the annual Neighborhood Council Congress last Saturday at City Hall.  The event was a success. Numerous elected officials, agency representatives and community leaders (over 800) attended. There were many workshops and he learned a great deal.

7.3.    From At-Large and Area Representatives.

7.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large Rep) reported on community safety work involving efforts to improve construction dumpster placement.  He is serving with Susan Payne (representing PPCC) on the community dog park committee. They are surveying the Palisades for appropriate areas and will look throughout the city for examples of high functioning dog parks.

7.3.2.    Cathy Russell (Area 7 Rep) reported there will be an event at Rustic Canyon Park – Bake and Gather – Relief for Hurricane Harvey victims, on September 16, 2017, from 9 am to 11 am.

7.4.    From Organizational Reps.

7.4.1.    Sarah Conner (PPRA) reported on PPRA upcoming activities and events.

7.4.2.    David Card (Rotary Club) reported on the annual fundraiser for the Rustic Canyon Recreation Center, Rustic Night.  The overall goal is to rehabilitate the entire historic clubhouse by its 100-year anniversary, 2023. The fundraiser will be held on September 23, 2017. Go to: to get tickets. There also will be a “speed tennis” event on the morning of the 23rd at 9 am. David Card will be honored at the Hula-themed event in the evening.

7.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives.

7.5.1.    LAPD Officer Michael Moore, Palisades SLO, reported that crime is down, but officers are reporting seeing garage doors left opened and cars are left unlocked.  Keep in mind even though this is a safe community, residents should take precautions.

7.5.2.    LAPD Officer Kristin Cho reported on scams.  She presented a Power Point regarding financial elder abuse common scams, sweetheart/romance scams, grandparent scams, IRS scams, pre-paid debit card scams and more. What to do: stop communicating with scammers and stop sending money etc. Contact Officer Cho at 310.444.1567 or

7.5.3.    Lisa Cahill, Palisades-Brentwood Field Deputy, Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin.

Lisa reported that the cleaning of the concrete basins along Palisades Drive and the Highlands is a work in progress and they are trying to finish the project prior to the rainy season. There are areas that have naturally occurring water percolating through the ground. Naturally occurring systems are not a worry for mosquitos. The official working for LA County Basin Vector Control found mosquito larva and sprayed. Temescal Canyon Rd. has new “do not dump” signs posted to prevent the dumping of wood. More signs are coming soon in English and Spanish with information regarding fines. The City is determining whether cameras can be put in place. Chris Spitz asked whether signs could be posted notifying the public about the danger posed by the Shot Hole Borer Beetle infestation of trees. Lisa stated that they will consider adding such signage; these tiny beetles are very dangerous and can be transferred and destroy trees at your home and in your neighborhood. Lisa received a concern regarding the Alphabet streets – lots of stop signs are being obscured in the Alphabets. She personally verified there were 16 stop signs obscured. The City has ensured that stop signs can be seen. Regarding the Homeless Task Force – a call was made to pick up a pile of homeless camp remains which was placed on State (Caltrans) property. Danielle Samulon relayed that there is an unfinished home on Bollinger that presents a public safety hazard because it has been abandoned. Lisa suggested that 311 should be used and if that does not result in action, she should be called. Lisa will use her best efforts to have the City enforce orders.

7.5.4.    Janet Turner, District Representative, Office of Congressman Ted Lieu.  Janet reported that Congressman Lieu sent a letter to the House to investigate how and why the Equifax security breach occurred. He has co-sponsored the DREAM ACT and HOPE ACT. He voted to increase funding for cyber security scholarships. He has increased R&D for direct energy program. If you are applying for a grant, the Congressman will consider writing a letter of recommendation.

8.    Reports from Committees.

8.1.1.    Bylaws Committee (Richard Cohen & George Wolfberg, Co-Chairs).

Richard provided the board with a list of topics that the Committee will be considering for possible future Bylaws amendments, including: providing for uniform voting standards for different actions; removing some organizations that are being disbanded or are no longer active; revising officer election provisions (e.g., allowing vote by acclamation); editing Mission Statement language; allowing straw polls/direction of board votes; addressing agenda-setting policy with criteria for priorities (e.g., whether an issue is urgent or local); amending elected representative election criteria and rules (e.g., allowing one vote per resident instead of per household); and making various technical language corrections. The Committee will report back to the board with any recommendations. Anyone with questions, suggestions or concerns should contact Richard or George.

8.1.2.    Village Project Community Liaison Committee (VPCLC; Sue Kohl, Co-Chair).

Sue reported on a Caruso construction site visit. Two weeks ago she and few other board members took a tour of the project.   Even though Caruso lost 40 days due to rain, the project is ahead of schedule. Above ground construction should begin in a few months. Construction workers will be able to park in the underground garage at that point. The project should be open in July 2018. Chris Spitz reported they have a countdown clock for the project at the site office. Sue also reported that the Area Planning Commission denied the appeal by POV of the Vintage Grocers’ Plan Approval; as a result the market’s hours will be from 7am-10pm and off-site alcohol sales will be allowed.

9.    General Public Comment.

Robert Flick, a resident, stated that he opposes a project at 1525 Palisades Drive for an eldercare facility. He was advised to contact LUC Chair Howard Robinson.

10.     Old Business.

10.1.    WRAC-Recommended Motions.

1. Transparency in General Plan development process (sponsored by George Wolfberg and seconded by Chris Spitz). Following description of the motion and discussion, a vote was taken and the motion passed unanimouslyas follows:

“Pacific Palisades Community Council requests that Planning Department Work Group meetings now underway about our shared ideas and ideals for the Los Angeles General Plan and its many Elements be made fully transparent, be set at evening and weekend hours; be open to the public as of now; include representatives from the Neighborhood/Community Council system; and expand from the four meetings, now nearly completed in closed-door meetings, to four additional meetings that follow the above prescription.

“Minutes and general discussion notes should be made publicly available from past and future meetings.

“We further request, in the same vein, that the Mayor’s Planning Task Force and Transportation Infrastructure Steering Committee for the General Plan be made fully transparent, be set at evening and weekend hours; be open to the public as of now; and expand its closed-door meetings to several additional meetings that follow the above prescription.”

2.  Open Space Element update of General Plan (sponsored by George Wolfberg and seconded by Chris Spitz).  Following description of the motion and discussion, a vote was taken and the motion passed unanimously, as follows:

“The Planning Dept. shall open all advisory group meetings, provide agendas and minutes, include public comment and release the membership and composition of the General Plan Elements updates’ advisory working groups.

“ReCodeLA Citizen’s Zoning Advisory Committee should be the example used for the General Plan Elements updates. ReCodeLA’s review work is a transparent process, and agendas and minutes are available. Meetings are open, and public comment is included when time permits.” 

3.  Reserved seating for Board Representatives with a CIS or Board Resolution
(sponsored by George Wolfberg and seconded by Chris Spitz). Following description of the motion and discussion, a vote was taken and the motion passed unanimouslyas follows:

Refers to City Council file 15-0524

“In the interest of ensuring that local constituencies represented by Los Angeles Neighborhood Councils [and Community Councils] are heard, Pacific Palisades Community Council requests that seating be reserved at City departmental hearings, commission meetings, and Council meetings for members of Neighborhood and Community Councils.

“Pacific Palisades Community Council further requests that the City Council introduce a motion to amend the Administrative Code (Section 22.819) to reflect this policy.”

4.  Changes to proposed City cannabis regulations (consideration of draft ordinances) — Deferred, in light of the CPC’s earlier approval of the draft Commercial Cannabis Location Restriction Ordinance.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Sr. Detective, LAPD, Elder Crime Unit.  See 8.5.2, above.

12.    Adjournment.  The Presiding Officer adjourned the meeting at 8:35 pm.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Reza Akef, Rick Mills, Peter Culhane, Lou Kamer, Barbara Marinacci, Dick Wulliger, Gil Dembo, Rick McGeagh, David Card, Rick Lemmo, Sarah Conner, Richard Blumenberg

Voting Alternates:  Doug McCormick, Marilyn Wexler

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  David Peterson

1.    Certification of Quorum. The Chair, Maryam Zar, called the meeting to order at 7:07 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chair read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes:Chair deemed the minutes of July 27th, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming Meetings: 10/12/17. 1) Sgt. Danny Eun from West LAPD Traffic. 2) Stephanie Cohen, County Supervisor field office Rep. 10/26/17. 1) PTFH enforcement and results report.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Maryam announced that the Agenda is as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $37,873.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    General Public Comment.

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair.

8.1.1.    Report on City Cannabis Location Ordinance.  Discussion regarding buffering sensitive sites, parks, schools and beaches. Brentwood Community Council asked for a 1000 feet buffer zone. City Ordinance will establish 800 feet.

8.1.2.    Appointing new committee and advisors.

  1. Chair suggested Harris Patrick Culhane for Youth Advisor. Announcement will be made soon.
  2. Chair appointed Lindsay Conner as PPCC’s Legal Advisor. There were no objections to this appointment. At the suggestion of the Treasurer, Chair will invite Lindsay to attend the next meeting to be introduced to the Board.

[Note:  Item 8.1.3 not included.]

8.1.4.a.    Winter Gala.  George Wolfberg will chair the Award Selection Committee (ASC); members include: Daphne Gronich, Steve Boyers, Andy Frew, Marie Steckmest.

8.1.4.b.    Peter Culhane will chair the Holiday Dinner and Awards Gala. The event will take place on December 14, 2017 and the venue will be Gladstone’s.

8.1.4.c.    Nominations for Citizen of the Year and Golden Sparkplug awards are now open.  See document attached.

8.1.5.    New Organizational Reps rotating onto the Board for a term beginning October 1 2017 and ending September 30, 2018.  See document attached.

8.1.6.   No announcement made.

8.2.    From Officers.

8.2.1.    Chair Emeritus, Chris Spitz, SB 649 update since Senate vote. PPCC letter urging a veto sent to Governor: SB-649-Gov.fin_.pdf. A letter was also sent by WRAC:

8.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

8.3.1.    Reza Akef (Area 8 Rep) reported that DWP will be installing a 20” x 40’ underground vault in front of his driveway; and announced an accident involving a student at Paul Revere Middle School.

8.4.    From Organizational Reps.

8.4.1.    Rick McGeagh, PAB & PPBA.  Spooktacular announcement, Saturday October 28, 2017, 3 pm to 7 pm at Palisades Recreation Center.

8.4.2.    Sarah Conner, PPRA, reported their position with respect to a single family construction project on Lachman Lane, which has been met with community opposition.

8.5.    From Governmental Representatives.

8.5.1.    Michael Moore – Los Angeles Police Department (“LAPD”) — Not in attendance.

8.5.2.    Lisa Cahill – Office of Councilman Mike Bonin, District Director.

Lisa reported that there is a senior care facility proposed to be constructed in the Highlands. (Chair explained, and Howard Robinson (LUC Chair) confirmed, that he would ask for the comment period on this project to be prolonged so that the PPCC LUC could review the matter and comment, if appropriate.) Coastal Development Permit hearing will be on October 5, 2017 regarding the beach curfew. Comments are due by October 6. Councilman Bonin took action regarding Hepatitis A outbreak allowing for public restrooms to be opened all night. Although “road diets” have been implemented in other areas of CD11, there will not be “road diets” in the Palisades. Speed humps – CD 11 keeps an internal list of requests for speed humps. DOT evaluates 30 projects per year. CD11 residents responding to the call quickly filled the online request interface for speed humps. CD11 keeps a running list, however, and Palisadians can email Lisa with their continued suggestions.

8.6.    From PPCC Advisors.

9.    Reports from Committees.

9.1.    PPCC LUC.

Meeting on 9/28, 5-6:30 pm; report from Chair Howard Robinson.  LUC met and had a discussion regarding policy and procedures; resolved to review the Highlands senior center project; discussed alcohol standards and will continue to work on standardizing CUB review guidelines for PPCC.

10.    Old Business.

10.1.    Update on Caruso Village Project from Caruso.

Michael Gazzano presented a video on the construction progress to date. He discussed new tenants, construction workers taking shuttles and parking well beyond the project and various plans to meet the community’s needs. He was asked several questions. Energy efficient, green technology and sustainable processes for watering and electricity are in the works. There will be between 40 and 45 tenants occupying the premises. There will be eight residential units for rent.

Mr. Gazzano reported that Caruso will be funding landscape architects in drafting plans for harmonizing improvements in the village as part of the project spearheaded by PRIDE with John Padden taking the lead.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Overnight beach camping ordinance, LAMC 63.44, restricting beach access from midnight to 5 am.

Discussion & motion. (see also content/uploads/2016/03/PPCC-letter-re-storage-ords.pdf and content/uploads/2017/04/Beach-detail-and-motion.pdf).

Motion passed unanimously: “PPCC supports the Coastal Development Permit which would continue to implement LAMC 63.44 B 14 (b), restricting access to beaches from midnight to 5am, in the interest of public safety, quality of life and environmental considerations that impact residential neighborhoods along the shoreline in Pacific Palisades.”

12.    Adjournment.  Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:00pm.

ATTACHMENT:  ITEM 8.1.4.c. – Awards Nominations Information

Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC) is pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted from the community for the 2017 Citizen of the Year and Golden Sparkplug Awards, to be presented at the PPCC annual holiday party on December 14, 2017, at Gladstone’s Restaurant (event details to follow). Nominations should be submitted to (email preferred) or to P.O. Box 1131, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272. The deadline for receipt of nominations is midnight on October 28, 2017.

The Citizen of the Year Award honors long term, steady, reliable and continuing outstanding volunteer service as well as a recent extraordinary accomplishment by an individual that resulted in a substantial benefit to the Palisades community at large. The recipient must be an adult resident of the Palisades at the time the accomplishment and long term services were rendered.

The Golden Sparkplug Award honors those citizens who ignite original ideas and projects into community action that benefit Palisadians throughout the community. The project must have been initiated, in progress or completed during the current or prior calendar year. Adults and youth are both eligible, and must either own real property in, reside in or operate a business in the Palisades at the time the services were rendered.

In the case of both Awards, the services, accomplishment or project must have been voluntary and not related to the nominee’s business or occupation. Neither Award can be given to PPCC board members based on services directly related to their responsibilities as board members, although such services may be considered as a qualifying factor in the case of nominees for the Citizen Award. The Award recipients are based on the quality of work and benefits achieved, not the quantity of nominations.

For further information about Award requirements, go to, or email 


Business & Commerce
Chamber of Commerce: Rick Lemmo
Alternate: Susan Payne

Culture, Ethics & Aesthetics
Theatre Palisades, Andy Frew
Alternate: Friends of the Library, Sandy Eddy

Seven Arrows Elementary School, Margarita Pagliai
Alternate: Marquez Charter School, Jenny Hope Cote

Historical Society: Dick Wulliger
Alternate: Eric Dugdale

Civic Organizations
PRIDE, Bruce Schwartz
Alternate: Civic League, Richard Blumenberg

AYSO, Janet Anderson
Alternate: YMCA, Jim Kirtley

Temescal Canyon Association, Gil Dembo
Alternate: Brenda Theveny

Service Clubs
American Legion, David Card
Alternate: Optimist Club, Jody Margulies

Residents Association
Pacific Palisades Residents Association, Sarah Rena Conner
Alternate: Barbara Kohn


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Holdorff Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Rick Mills, Dick Wulliger, Sarah Conner, Janet Anderson, Margarita Pagliai

Voting Alternates:  Susan Payne, Jody Margulies, Brenda Theveny, Sandra Eddy

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Leah Cox, Amir Ebtehadj, Lindsay Conner

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:02 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chair read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Chair deemed the minutes of September 28, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming meetings: 10/26/17. 1) PTFH enforcement and results report; 2) Proposed Bylaws amendments, 2nd distribution and motion; 3) (Tentative) 1525 Palisades Dr. 11/9/17. 1) Announcement of Citizen of the Year and Golden Sparkplug Honorees. 12/14/17. Annual Holiday Meeting and Awards Gala at Gladstone’s.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Chair announced that the agenda was as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen (Treasurer) reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $37,819.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    General Public Comment on local issues – None.

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair.

8.1.1.    New Elected Representative member of the Executive Committee (Bylaws Art. V.3.A).  Chair announced that at her request the PPCC officers have elected Danielle Samulon as the Elected Representative member of the Executive Committee, replacing David Kaplan. Chair thanked David for his service.

8.1.2.    Appointing new Advisors with consent of the board (Bylaws Art. V.I.B and XIV):

1) Youth Advisors:  The board unanimously consented to the appointment of Amir Ebtehadj (public school – Palisades Charter High School; Youth Advisor the previous term) and Harris Patrick Culhane (private school – Brentwood School) as PPCC’s Youth Advisors. Harris will attend an upcoming meeting to be introduced to the board. Amir will help us conduct a search at Pali High for a new Youth Advisor, and in the process, establish a mechanism by which following PPCC Chairs can seek applications and find Youth Advisors. Amir and Patrick will, together, help write a road-map for future Advisors representing the voice of Palisadian youth.

2) Legal Advisor:  Chair introduced Lindsay Conner, who summarized his professional background and extensive legal experience and confirmed that he is married to board member Sarah Conner. Regarding potential conflicts of interest, Lindsay assured the board that he would recuse himself on any matters in which his spouse is involved. Regarding past situations involving board members who individually sought advice from the Legal Advisor, Lindsay confirmed he would be Advisor only to the Chair and the board as a whole, not to individual board members. With this information the board unanimously reconfirmed their consent to Lindsay’s appointment as PPCC Legal Advisor.

8.1.3.    Chair welcomed new Organizational Representatives rotating onto the board for the term beginning October 1, 2017 and ending September 30, 2018. See attachment below for list of new Organizational members.

8.1.4.    New member of Awards Selection Committee. Chair announced that the Awards Selection Committee members are now: Chair George Wolfberg, Daphne Gronich, Andy Frew, Steve Boyers and Sylvia Boyd (Marie Steckmest, previously appointed, is unable to serve but gives her blessings to Sylvia).  Awards nomination process:

8.2.    From Officers.

8.2.1.    Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus) provided an SB 649 update; deadline for Governor to sign or veto bill – Oct. 15, 2017.  She and the opposition coalitions are still waiting for an update. No action has taken place to date.

8.2.2.    George Wolfberg (Vice Chair) gave an update on the Beach Curfew Ordinance (LAMC 66.34) CDP hearing.

A determination was not made at the hearing and the deadline to submit comments was extended to October 11. George spoke at the hearing in support of PPCC’s letter submitted on September 28, 2017: He explained that the City did not get approval of the beach access restriction initially and is going through the approval process now because of a legal challenge by some Venice residents. Beach closure from midnight to 5am will continue during the CDP process but could eventually be lifted or subject to conditions. It is important for community voices to be heard on the record.

8.2.3.    Allison Holdorff Polhill (Secretary) provided an update on LAUSD District 4, Office of Nick Melvoin. 10/14/17 UC App Day – Fairfax High; 10/23rd Paul Revere Charter Middle School 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm- Parent Forum Regarding Board Member Nick Melvoin’s TECH App October 30th Orville Wright Middle School 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm Parent Forum Regarding Board Member Nick Melvoin’s Resolution for a TECH App; 11/13/17 Parent Facilities Forum with LAUSD’s Chief of Facilities.

8.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

8.3.1.    Lou Kamer (At-Large Rep) reported on speeding drivers in the Alphabets. He also announced that on October 14th volunteers with the Homeless Task Force will clean up abandoned camps in lower Temescal Canyon.

8.3.2.    Rick Mills (Area 4 Rep) reported on the scoping meeting on October 10th regarding the Asilomar Blvd. slope repair project draft EIR. The City will be conducting a new test called “deep soil mixing.” Responses to all public comments must be in the draft EIR.

8.4.    From Organizational Reps.

8.4.1.    Dick Wulliger (Historical Society) announced that Laura Rosenzweig, author of “Hollywood’s Spies,” will be the featured speaker at an event sponsored by PPHS at Theatre Palisades on October 25th. There is no charge for admission.

8.4.2.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce) reported that the Chamber is having a networking breakfast on October 25th at Taste. $10 per person. On November 7th there will be a holiday mixer at the Luxe Brentwood Hotel; Tiger Wood’s organization Genesis Open is sponsoring and will provide the food. A motor coach can take 50 people to this event. $25 per person. December 1st is the date for the annual Chamber holiday “Ho Ho Ho” event, featuring Santa Claus.

8.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives.

8.5.1.    Sgt. Danny Eun (LAPD Traffic) reported on traffic and enforcement efforts.

He explained that the investigation regarding the fatality that occurred on Sunset and Chautauqua is still pending to determine the speed of all the parties involved. Regarding the “Ruthless Ryderz” problem – this requires an ongoing effort to work on a long-term solution. Continuous enforcement is difficult to maintain. LAPD will continue to enforce speeding along Sunset. Some bikes have been tricked out. The motorcycle task force focuses on Wednesday nights on average once or twice a month. The community has been providing input that this enforcement has been effective. Public education is critical to decrease speed. George Wolfberg informed the board that a portion of the police budget is funded by fees, fines and forfeitures. There is a contractor doing speed studies in the district now, and may be studying Sunset Blvd at some point in the near future. Sgt Eun will keep us posted. Sgt Eun informed the Board that Captain Valencia Thomas had assumed the role of Capt III at the West LA LAPD Bureau Office. She would be the commanding officer now for West LAPD. Officer Wendling is her 2nd in command. The Traffic Division also has a new Captain: Gary Walters. Sgt. Eun will be sending an intro between the Chair and his new Commanding Officer.

Traffic Officer Clifford introduced himself as the new evening traffic enforcement officer serving the Palisades. He will be staking out Temescal Canyon and Palisades Drive, and has already conducted his work on several Sundays, where he has cited Palisadians as well as others.

Palisades Senior Lead Officer Michael Moore (LAPD) reported that crime is down 16%. He also introduced Officer Maria Gray, who was in attendance and is the Brentwood SLO covering a portion of the Riviera.

Karen Ridgely (audience) described ongoing problems with youth congregating and parking illegally at night in the cul-de-sac at the east end of Asilomar. She was advised that concerned neighbors should work with Officer Moore and also consider engaging a security firm with knowledge of the problem, such as Palisades Patrol, to regularly patrol the area.

8.5.2.    Stephanie Cohen (District Director, West Metro-LA Field Office, Supervisor Sheila Kuehl).

Stephanie reported on County and housing updates. Supervisor Kuehl has opened a West LA Office in WLA City Hall. The region is vast. Regarding homelessness – Measure HHH has for six months been the subject of a Supervisors’ working group. Funding will be spent in seven categories including 21 strategies. Money has been collected starting on October 1st. RFPs will come out on a rolling basis. The Supervisors approved of funding to keep an Armory in the Valley open exclusively for homeless women.

Regarding Hepatitis A – the County has been providing free vaccinations, with a focus on Venice, Skid Row and parts of the Valley. The Supervisor is attempting to get the City to address this public health crisis.

Regarding water/environmental matters – there is a plan to capture storm drain water. There is also an initiative to support construction of “cool roofs.” As temperatures rise there is a need for cool roofs.

The County has also asked the Office of Public Guardian to prepare a report regarding guardianships/conservatorship.

8.5.3.    Debbie Dyner Harris (District Director, Office of Councilmember Mike Bonin) reported on Great Streets, mobility measures and more.

Regarding trash – business owners (buildings with three units or larger) have a new trash franchise system. Our District was assigned Athens Trash Service. In some capacity it has been messy – missed pick-ups and price increases. Councilmember Bonin has been concerned about this system and has been writing many letters and making calls. Trucks must be zero emissions; only one truck can come into a franchise area instead of many trucks in the past. Multi-family buildings and restaurants will now recycle.

Regarding the Great Streets Program – each Council district identified a street to participate. Councilmember Bonin identified Venice Blvd. in Council District 11. Debbie reaffirmed there will be no “road diets” in the Palisades.

Regarding Fire Roads and emergency access roads, Debbie said CD11 had asked local LFD to survey those roads and ensure that they are unencumbered and usable in the event of an emergency.

Regarding street resurfacing – resurfacing of Chautauqua from Sunset to PCH will take place this fiscal year. Completion of the resurfacing of Palisades Drive is expected to be scheduled soon.

Randy Plaskoff (audience) introduced himself as a nine-year Palisades resident with a traffic plan for the entire Westside. He will be conducting a survey in the near future.

8.6.    From PPCC Advisors.

8.6.1.    Youth Advisor (Amir Ebtehadj, Palisades Charter High School).

Amir reported that his service on the board has been an amazing opportunity for learning from PPCC. Announcements: there is a big homecoming game at Stadium by the Sea on October 20, 2017. The school’s donor brick campaign to fund the new running track is ongoing. There will be a large volunteer food drive event on November 4 at Pali High, sponsored by Palisades Lutheran Church, the Chamber of Commerce and the Pali High student body and administration. Palisades Ambassadors from Pali High are available and eager to come and assist at community events. Because Amir is a senior he will assist the Chair in the process of finding a new Youth Advisor from Pali High (the public school Youth Advisor).

9.    Reports from Committees.

9.1.    Bylaws Committee (George Wolfberg and Richard Cohen, Co-Chairs).

First Distribution of proposed amendments to the PPCC Bylaws, Standing Rules and Attachment A (Election Procedures). See 1) Committee Report ( and 2) draft of proposed amendments, distributed concurrently with the meeting agenda via PPCC email (“Clean” draft plus “Redline”). George read from the Committee Report and provided additional detail on some of the amendments. He also explained that motions by the Bylaws Committee for Board approval of the proposed Redline amendments will be discussed and voted on at the October 26, 2017 meeting, at the time of the required Second Distribution. Daphne Gronich (audience) asked a question regarding the “agenda setting process” amendments, which the Co-Chairs explained.

9.2.    Awards Selection Committee (George Wolfberg, Chair).  Report not given due to time constraints.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business – None.

12.    Adjournment.  Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:00 pm. 


Business & Commerce

Chamber of Commerce, Rick Lemmo

Alternate: Susan Payne

Culture, Ethics & Aesthetics

Theatre Palisades, Andy Frew

Alternate: Friends of the Library, Sandy Eddy


Seven Arrows Elementary School, Margarita Pagliai

Alternate: Marquez Charter School, Jenny Hope Cote


Historical Society, Dick Wulliger

Alternate: Eric Dugdale

Civic Organizations

PRIDE, Bruce Schwartz

Alternate: Civic League, Richard Blumenberg


AYSO, Janet Anderson

Alternate: YMCA, Jim Kirtley


Temescal Canyon Association, Gil Dembo

Alternate: Brenda Theveny

Service Clubs

American Legion, David Card

Alternate: Optimist Club, Jody Margulies

Residents Association

Pacific Palisades Residents Association, Sarah Rena Conner

Alternate: Barbara Kohn


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz (Acting Secretary), David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Katie Braude, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Rick Mills, Richard Wulliger, Janet Anderson, Margarita Pagliai, Gil Dembo, David Card, Rick Lemmo, Andy Frew

Voting Alternates:  Richard Blumenberg, Andrew Wolfberg

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Leah Cox, Jody Margulies, Howard Robinson, David Peterson

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chair read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Chair deemed the minutes of October 12, 2017 approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming meetings: No announcement.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Chair announced that the agenda was as distributed. She also announced that due to timing considerations all announcements would be deferred until after the Committee reports (Item 9).

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen (Treasurer) reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $37,740.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    General Public Comment on local issues – None.

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair.

8.1.1.    Chair announced that the Dog Park Working Group would like to apply for a grant for funding. They cannot raise funds on their own because they aren’t a 501(c)(3) and have inquired whether or not a local organization can act as their 501(C)(3). The Chair suggested PPCC act as a conduit for fundraising. Chair asked if there were any objections. Treasurer Richard Cohen objected and stated that we need more information before making any decision; he would need to research whether this would be appropriate and legal. He also asked whether any sites have been identified. Janet Anderson (AYSO) stated that she is on the Park Board and two potential sites have been identified, both on lower Temescal Canyon Dr. (one near the playground and the other to the north of that area). The matter will be deferred for a full presentation and more information at a later date.

8.2.    From Officers.

8.2.1.     Chris Spitz (Chair/President Emeritus) distributed the attached written report on the status of SB 649 and the proposed Short Term Rentals (Home Sharing) Ordinance.

8.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps – None.

8.4.    From Organizational Reps.

8.4.1.    Rick Lemmo (Chamber of Commerce) reminded the board of the Chamber’s holiday mixer on November 7th at the Luxe Brentwood Hotel, sponsored by Tiger Wood’s organization Genesis Open.

8.5.    From Government Offices/Representatives – None.

8.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

9.    Reports from Committees.

9.1.    Awards Selection Committee (George Wolfberg, Chair).  George orally gave the attached Committee Report.

9.2.    Land Use Committee (LUC) (Howard Robinson, Chair).

Report on LUC meeting regarding proposed 1525 Palisades Dr. eldercare facility; possible Committee recommendation and board motion. Chair Maryam Zar announced that the LUC Chair would give his report following presentations by the developer/applicant and residents/opponents. She also explained that time permitting there would be opportunity for public comment. Resident Robert Flick of Highlanders United for Good (HUG) spoke first in opposition to the project and specified a number of concerns, including building height, density and compatibility with the surrounding area; its location adjacent to zoned open space; and the Categorical Exemption from CEQA recommended by Planning staff. Kevin McDonnell, attorney representing the developer/applicant Rony Shram, then explained that the proposed use is permitted in the C-1 zone; that the project is Code-compliant and does not require a variance or a CUP; the building will be no more than 4 stories high, with a 2-level subterranean garage and sufficient parking for all employees (there will be 67 parking spaces, in excess of Code requirements); and the building will be no higher than 45 ft. measured from the lowest point five feet from the edge of the building and 39 ft. in perceived height from Palisades Dr. Asked if the height could be lowered, Mr. McDonnell indicated that a height reduction could be explored but he doesn’t know if that could be supported.

Howard then reported that the LUC held a one-and-a-half hour meeting immediately preceding the board meeting. The sole topic was the proposed eldercare facility. Presentations were made by the developer/applicant and his attorney and by representatives of HUG, and there was extensive public comment followed by discussion among the LUC members.

Howard advised the board that prior to the meeting he had personally reviewed the project plans at the City Planning Dept. offices and had made the plans and background materials available to LUC members prior to the meeting. He explained that at the meeting, the members discussed the plans and required findings under the Coastal Act and Code. At Howard’s recommendation the LUC did not take up the Planning staff recommendation to issue a Categorical Exemption because the CEQA issues are highly technical and the LUC does not have sufficient expertise to comment. He noted that there will be several opportunities to comment on environmental issues as the process proceeds.

After discussion, the LUC then voted to recommend that the PPCC board find that the use is appropriate, but that a number of concerns were raised on which the LUC could not reach consensus: 1) safety of residents in case of emergency; 2) access for employees; 3) noise and disruption; 4) height; and 5) number of units. Howard reiterated that there was no consensus to make a firm recommendation on these matters.

Howard also explained the reason why PPCC was taking this up on October 26: A hearing on the application took place on October 4, which he attended; at his request the Zoning Administrator held the file open for 30 days to allow comment by PPCC. The ZA, Howard said, pledged to keep the file open for at least 30 days. Presumably, October 26 is the only scheduled board meeting before the deadline for comment ends.

Comments and questions from the audience and board were then taken. Project opponents expressed various concerns, including those referenced by Mr. Flick as well as concerns about ingress and egress, safety, emergency access, noise, disruption and outdoor light.

Regarding concerns about ingress and egress, Howard stated that the plans do indicate directional arrows going both in and out of the driveway on Palisades Dr. Mr. Shram assured the board and audience that this was an error in drafting which will be corrected; the driveway on Palisades Dr. will be exit only and the sole entrance will be on Vereda de la Montura. Mr. Shram also assured the board and audience that he will be responsive to complaints about outdoor light.

Regarding concerns about safety and access in an emergency, Mr. Shram stated that he explained all these concerns to LAFD Assistant Chief Patrick Butler, who advised that he (Chief Butler) believes this is an “excellent” location for this facility and he sees no problem with emergency access.

Regarding CEQA concerns, several board members stated agreement with Howard and the LUC that PPCC does not have sufficient expertise to comment at this time and that there would be further opportunities for comment going forward.

After extensive discussion, Richard Cohen made a motion, seconded by Chris Spitz, to affirm the use as appropriate and to note that community members have raised certain concerns. Discussion continued, and the Chair bought up the issue of the building height. She noted, as had been noted previously at the LUC by Rick Mills and again in discussion at PPCC, that in no place in Pacific Palisades is it permissible to have commercial building heights taller than 35 feet. She asked how high the proposed eldercare center would be, and was told it would be 39 feet at its highest perceived point. The Chair noted that along the Sunset commercial corridor the height limit for buildings is 35 feet, and in Pacific Palisades Commercial Village and Neighborhoods Specific Plan (which admittedly does not apply to the Highlands), the height limit imposed in commercial areas across the Palisades is 30 feet. She asked the developer to be mindful of the current 4 to 9 feet of building height that would seem inappropriate and inconsistent with the rest of the Palisades, and asked them to consider reducing the height. The applicant team of McDonnell and Shram pledged they would. Several “friendly” amendments to the motion language were then made, discussed and accepted by the board. The final amended motion was read aloud as follows:

PPCC finds that the proposed eldercare facility is an appropriate use. We note community concerns about height, safety, access, noise, disruption and proximity to zoned open space. The developer assures us that the Palisades Dr. driveway will be modified to exit only. Further, the developer assures us that he will be responsive to complaints about outdoor light.”

A vote was taken and the motion passed.

9.3.    Bylaws Committee (George Wolfberg and Richard Cohen, Co-Chairs).

Second Distribution of proposed amendments to the PPCC Bylaws, Standing Rules and Attachment A (Election Procedure). See 1) attached Committee Report and 2) draft of proposed amendments distributed concurrently with the meeting agenda via PPCC email (“Clean” draft plus “Redline”). George orally read the attached Report and provided additional detail regarding each of the motions below, which were moved and seconded by the Bylaws Committee. Questions were asked about 1) the public comment process (Danielle Samulon); 2) how to verify that voters are actually 18 years old (Cathy Russell); 3) the agenda setting process (Lou Kamer); and 4) possibly mandating an alternate method to online voting (Eric Marshall, audience). The Co-Chairs answered all questions, explained the amendments and other relevant bylaws provisions, and related past PPCC practices and experience related to the questions. The Co-Chairs reiterated that the Attachment A amendments allow the Election Committee to provide for alternative voting methods to assist voters who may not be able to access online voting; Chair gave assurances that a non-digital voting method would be provided for in the next election cycle. It was also noted that the bylaws may be amended again in the future. Daphne Gronich (audience) suggested that we have a sign-in sheet for audience members (not as a bylaws matter). Following discussion, votes were taken on each of the following motions, in order:

Motion A: Approval of amendments to the Bylaws (including Appendix A). Passed.

Motion B: Approval of amendments to the Standing Rules (Appendix C). Passed.

Motion C: Approval of amendments to Attachment A (Election Procedure). Passed.

9.2.    Awards Selection Committee (George Wolfberg, Chair). George orally read the attached Committee Report.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business – None.

12.    Adjournment. Chair adjourned the meeting at 9:00 pm.



Regarding SB 649: Governor Brown vetoed the bill on October 15, 2017. In his veto statement the Governor acknowledged the value of 5G technology but also affirmed the need to preserve local government control. A revised bill is expected to be introduced in the State legislature in the coming months. We will monitor. We are also pressing the City Council to take up the matter of necessary revisions to the City’s Above Ground Facilities Ordinance (regulation of cell towers and other structures in the public right of way), stalled in the Public Works Committee for almost two years. The Council File expires on December 8 and we will seek an extension if necessary and possible.

Regarding the Short Term Rentals (STRs) / Home-Sharing Ordinance: This matter was heard once again in PLUM on October 24. Chris was among hundreds of interested persons in attendance. She was called first to speak in the line-up of Neighborhood Councils and she presented PPCC’s position as expressed in the three letters that are posted on our website. No action was taken and the matter will be subject to further Planning reports and Committee hearings. The Committee members gave some indication of additional amendments they would like to see, including providing for a CUP process to 1) allow rental of second homes or “vacation homes” on a short-term basis, and 2) allow homeowners individually to exceed the annual cap on STRs. Councilmember Englander stated that he wished to see no cap on STRs; currently, the proposed cap, approved by the CPC, is 180 days. We were also informed that short term rental of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs / Granny Flats) will not be permitted unless the unit itself is the primary residence of the property owner; if the owner actually resides in the main residence, any ADU on the property cannot be a legal STR.

Councilmember Bonin did not attend the hearing but Councilmember Koretz of CD5 attended and spoke. Among other things, based on his District’s feedback he wants to see a 90 day cap and more rigorous penalties for offenses, he is opposed to second home STRs and he wishes to restrict home sharing in high fire hazard severity zones. In her remarks Chris thanked Councilmember Koretz and also advised the Committee that PPCC would like to comment at the appropriate time on the proposed CUP process for vacation homes or rentals that exceed the annual cap, should these new provisions be included in an amended draft ordinance. We have been told that Committee staff members have stated that they were glad that PPCC and other community leaders/councils (from Brentwood, Bel Air Beverly Crest, Westchester-Playa del Rey and Westwood) were able to attend and testify.


Report of PPCC Awards Selection Committee

Handing out awards has been a PPCC tradition since 1974. The signature award is called the Golden Sparkplug Award.

The Golden Sparkplug Award honors those citizens who ignite original ideas and projects into community action that benefit Palisadians throughout the community. The project must have been initiated, in progress or completed during the current or prior calendar year. Adults and youth are both eligible, and must either own real property in, reside in or operate a business in the Palisades at the time the services were rendered.

Also, we have the prestigious Citizen of the Year Award, created by the Palisadian Post in 1947 which is awarded nearly every year. Since the paper decided it no longer wanted to present the Citizen award, the Community Council has taken it over:

The Citizen of the Year Award honors long term, steady, reliable and continuing outstanding volunteer service as well as a recent extraordinary accomplishment by an individual that resulted in a substantial benefit to the Palisades community at large. The recipient must be an adult resident of the Palisades at the time the accomplishment and long term services were rendered.

In the case of both Awards, the services, accomplishment or project must have been voluntary and not related to the nominee’s business or occupation. Neither Award can be given to PPCC board members based on services directly related to their responsibilities as board members, although such services may be considered as a qualifying factor in case of nominees for the Citizen Award. The Awards are based on the quality of work and benefits achieved, not the quantity of nominations.

And, there are other awards for the Awards Selection Committee to sort out. Prior to the Committee selecting a person or persons for an award, the Committee Chair shall circulate by email to other current members of the Board a list of those persons who have been nominated and ask that if any member of the Board desires to submit confidential comments about any nominee, they should submit any comments to the ASC Chair to be received within five days. So, all board members have a part to play. Look for this email in your mailbox this Sunday.

The awards are presented at our holiday party on Dec. 14, in lieu of a board meeting. Save this date! Our Chair has put me in charge of an awesome committee including past Citizen of the Year Daphne Gronich, Steve Boyers, Sylvia Boyd and Andy Frew. For all the details go to and click on DOCUMENTS/AWARD GUIDELINES. Submit nominations to Entry deadline is midnight this Saturday.


Report of PPCC Bylaws Committee

The PPCC Bylaws govern how we are organized and operate: what we do and how we do it. The Mission Statement read at the start of each PPCC Board meeting comes verbatim from our bylaws. The Bylaws have been incrementally changed numerous times over the years. There are many authors and occasionally terminology can become confusing.

The Bylaws Committee reviewed and discussed suggestions made over the past year or so and proposes numerous, mainly minor changes. Two documents were sent to each board member for review and were published on our website: a red-line (underline/strikeout) version so each and every recommended change is highlighted and a final “clean” draft for voting purposes. Before any bylaw amendments may be adopted, they must be distributed with the agenda for two consecutive PPCC meetings per Bylaws Article XII. So, the proposed changed document was introduced, in this case, at the first meeting in October, and if all goes smoothly it is to be voted upon tonight. Parts of the document (“Attachments”) are not actually part of the bylaws and could have been adopted at the first meeting in October without second distribution. At the Committee’s recommendation, however, all the changes are proposed to be voted tonight at the second distribution.

Many of the changes are minor and have been recommended to assure clarity and consistency of terminology and uniformity of application of Bylaws provisions. Here is a rundown on the substantive changes:

  • Permit vote for unopposed PPCC officer candidates by acclamation instead of paper vote. (Art. VII)
  • Move up the deadline for Organizations in single organization categories to designate who will represent them for the ensuing fiscal year. (Art. VIII)
  • Providing to the Chair flexibility in dealing with requests to add items to the board agenda,
  • In Bylaws Appendix “A”, retitling “Cultural, Ethics and Aesthetics” category to “Culture and Aesthetics” and deleting two service clubs no longer active in Pacific Palisades, and
  • Several changes to Bylaws Attachment “A” primarily to institutionalize our phase over to electronic balloting as the mailing of 10,000+ newsletters with included ballots has proved impractical. The PPCC Code of Conduct will apply to the candidates. The committee took care to recognize that on-line voting poses a challenge for a few residents by empowering the Election Committee to devise methods to facilitate voting. Two other significant changes will lower the voting age to 18 and eliminate the “one vote per household” rule thus allowing every qualified individual to vote.

So, the committee moves that the proposed recommended changes be adopted tonight. Because of slight differences in voting criteria, three votes are required.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Rick Mills, Peter Culhane, Lou Kamer, Rick Mills, Richard Wulliger, Janet Anderson, Gil Dembo, David Card, Reza Akef

Voting Alternates:  Brian Deming, Barbara Kohn, Susan Payne, Jenny Hope Cote

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Jody Margulies, Carol Bruch, Brenda Theveny, Sharon Kilbride, Harris Culhane

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Chair read the Mission Statement.

3.     Introduction of the Board and Audience.  The board and audience were introduced.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: Chair deemed the minutes of October 26, 2017, approved as distributed. 2) Upcoming meetings: December 14, 2017.  Holiday Meeting and Awards Gala at Gladstones.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  Chair announced that the agenda was as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.  Richard Cohen (Treasurer) reported that PPCC has a bank account balance of $37,686.40. There were no significant transactions since the last meeting.

7.    General Public Comment on local issues – None.

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair.

8.1.1.    Chair announced that the Holiday Meeting & Awards Gala celebrating the 2017 Awards Honorees with take place on December 14, 2017 at Gladstones.  Additional information and invitations will be coming soon.

8.2.    From Officers.

8.2.1.    George Wolfberg (Vice-Chair) reported that the City has approved the Coastal Development Permit allowing the beach curfew to continue, with conditions that were not described in the notice we received. The deadline to file an appeal is November 20, 2017.

Regarding Potrero Canyon, George explained that there is a Planning Dept. Zoning Information (ZI) Bulletin that applies to all Canyon rim properties and prevents owners from erecting massive retaining walls or structures on the rim. PPCC supports the ZI Bulletin. The City recently mistakenly issued a building permit for a homeowner to erect structures on the rim in violation of the ZI Bulletin; we understand that the permit has been or may be revoked, but construction appears to be continuing.

8.3.    From At-Large and Area Reps.

8.3.1.    Brian Deming (Area 3 Second Alternate) reported that the owners of the former Bernheimer Gardens property have completely cleared the brush. Three homes rather than four will be constructed on the lot. Responding to an inquiry from Peter Culhane, Brian stated that he will ask the owners to clear the curb along Sunset Blvd.  Brian also announced that the pole top distributing station adjacent to the property has been powered up.

8.3.2.    Lou Kamer (At Large Rep) announced that MADD has been making resources available to teens regarding cannabis.

He also stated that he is interested in knowing how reps communicate with their constituents. He is aware that Sue Kohl regularly communicates via email with Area 5 residents. Peter Culhane stated that in Area 2, the Summit Club (the largest Highlands HOA) has set up a reverse 911 system to alert residents in case of emergencies; other Highlands HOAs may also be participating. David Kaplan stated that he communicates with the Huntington HOA and other residents via email. He explained that not all reps have organized HOAs in their areas. Chris Spitz reported that Cathy Russell regularly participates in SMCCA meetings and communicates with residents. There was brief discussion about ways in which PPCC can communicate with Palisadians about emergencies and matters of interest. Jenny Hope Cote offered to assist with communications.

8.4.    From Organizational Reps.

8.4.1.    Susan Payne (Chamber of Commerce) stated that the November 7 Genesis Open event at the Luxe Hotel was a success. She announced upcoming Chamber-sponsored events: The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday 11/24 through Sunday 11/26 – Shop Local in the Palisades. Friday 12/1 – Holiday Ho Ho Ho featuring Santa Claus at Antioch & Swarthmore in the Village. Saturday 1/20/18: Kevin Nealon & Friends Comedy Event at the Woman’s Club, honoring Arnie Wishnick.

8.4.2.    Sandy Eddy (Friends of the Library) announced that the Friends will sponsor a Library Parking Lot Book Sale on December 9 from 9am-3pm. No book donations will be accepted in December and January. They will begin accepting donations again in Feb. 2018. The proposed new store within the library has been stuck in the City Attorney’s office. The Woman’s Club Home Tour & Boutique will take place this Sunday, November 12.

8.4.3.    Gil Dembo (TCA) reported that TCA will hold its annual meeting on December 4 at 7pm in the Temescal Canyon Dining Hall. Sen. Ben Allen will speak on the Santa Monica Mountains.

8.4.4.    David Card (American Legion).

David reminded everyone that Veterans Day is on November 11. American Legion Post 283 members will give brief Veterans Day talks to local classes and school assemblies. There will be a ceremony at the National Cemetery in Brentwood/Westwood. It’s also traditional to fly the American flag. David reported that he is working with a Boy Scout to improve a median on Sunset at Las Lomas. He also announced that there will be a ceremony honoring Sgt. Henry Johnson, the first African American soldier to fight in World War I at the National Cemetery tomorrow afternoon at 5 pm. There will be an Open House in Bldg. 3 on Saturday from 11-2 pm to raise monies to fix the church. David explained the custom of wearing poppy lapel pins in remembrance of the armistice at the end of WWI. He then recited a famous poem associated with WWI and the armistice: “In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae (“In Flanders fields the poppies grow, between the crosses row on row. . . .”).

8.5.   From Government Offices/Representatives.

8.5.1.   In the absence of Janet Turner, District Representative for Congressman Ted Lieu, Chair announced there will be a Town Hall hosted by Congressman Lieu at the Wadsworth Theatre, November 10, from 2-3:30 pm.

8.5.2.    Neighborhood Prosecutor Veronica de La Cruz-Robles reported that other neighborhoods are curious about the success of the Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness (PPTFH). She discussed a Citation Clinic to assist individuals to be gainfully employed.

8.5.3.    Lisa Cahill, Brentwood-Palisades Field Deputy for Councilman Mike Bonin/CD11, discussed a protective tree ordinance. She also reported that the Highlands catchment basins project is almost coming to a conclusion, and that signs against wood dumping on Temescal Canyon have been effective. Councilman Bonin has been to sites where workers were not following work hour permits and there is a holiday moratorium on road construction.

8.6.    From PPCC Advisors – None.

9.    Reports from Committees.

9.1.    Awards Selection Committee (George Wolfberg, Chair).

George announced the 2017 Honorees: Citizen of the Year Bruce Schwartz; Golden Sparkplugs Matthew Rodman, Tom Creed, Marie Steckmest and Debbie Warfel; Pride of the Palisades Nancy Klopper. George explained each of their accomplishments and read from the attached Committee Report. He also encouraged attendance at the Awards Gala on December 14.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    Report from Oversight Committee and Enforcement Committee of the PPTFH.

Sharon Kilbride, PPCC Homelessness Advisor and PPTFH board member, reported that the Enforcement Committee monitors from Santa Monica Canyon to Castellammare. Every Monday except the 4th Monday of each month the Enforcement Committee task force is out monitoring the homeless population with Recreation and Parks. The homeless count is down 50% in Pacific Palisades. Since 2015, outreach has decreased the amount of homeless encampments. Tom Creed has helped significantly to track the encampments. Sharon also announced that on November 13 from 7-8:30 pm, PPTFH will hold a community meeting at the Palisades Branch Library featuring three formerly homeless individuals who will share their experiences.

12.    Adjournment.  Chair adjourned the meeting at 8:35 pm.



Six dedicated Palisadians will be honored at the Pacific Palisades Community Council annual holiday party on December 14 at Gladstones Restaurant.

Bruce Schwartz has been named “Citizen of the Year,” continuing a steady stream of dedicated residents honored since 1947. Bruce was instrumental in initiating the “Safety on Sunset” program in 2012, receiving a Golden Sparkplug for his efforts. Bruce has been the Homeless Task Force liaison to the Fire Department and was the driving force behind obtaining and installing signs to prevent trespassing and camping in hazardous hillside areas. He has repeatedly helped former PPCC Citizen of the Year Sharon Kilbride with homeless cleanup efforts in our commercial village and other areas of the Palisades. Bruce is president of PRIDE and has single-handedly planted flowers at forlorn medians and bus stops in the community. He has also supported a variety of other community improvement projects including spearheading the Fire Hazard signs along the bluffs and helping nudge the city to clean-up of dangerous swales with standing water along Palisades Drive. Bruce is a selfless, unsung hero of our community and a most worthy Citizen of the Year.

Matthew Rodman has been an extraordinary advocate for student safety during congested student drop-off periods, personally directing traffic every school morning in front of the school. Matthew also worked with the school district and several bus operators to get more students onto buses, reducing daily car trips by 543 during the current school year, a stunning accomplishment. Mathew also assists from morning to evening with the 4th of July Parade, concert and fireworks and the PPCC is honored to present him with a Golden Sparkplug Award.

Marie Steckmest, a community icon, former Citizen of the Year and Golden Sparkplug winner, once again will receive a Golden Sparkplug Award for creating a robust garden program at Marquez School and integrating it with each grade level curriculum. Marie’s work creates excitement and awareness for sustainable living and environmental mindfulness, while also teaching the kids to grow, compost and mulch. Yes, Children enjoy pulling weeds and eating the vegetables they have grown in the raised beds on the schoolyard, thanks to “Miss Marie!”

Debbie Warfel woke up one morning to the sounds of low-flying commercial aircraft heading toward LAX over Pacific Palisades. The FAA’s Next-Gen is a gps-guided system that replaces the old radar system. It is supposed to save fuel through more accurate flight patterns, but the result has been many flights “short-cutting” across our community at lower altitudes than past practice. Debbie sprang into action, quickly learning that the FAA had closed comment on the new program and who knew there would be such a dramatic change in flight paths? Nevertheless, Debbie contacted the FAA, LAX Noise Roundtable, and numerous elected officials including our representatives in Congress. She worked through the Santa Monica Canyon Civic Association to raise the funds to hire an aviation attorney to represent us with the FAA. Just this past week, Senator Feinstein wrote a strongly worded letter of support to the FAA. Debbie’s lawyers are working through the federal court in Washington DC to reach an amicable settlement. Debbie is a worthy Golden Sparkplug Award honoree.

Tom Creed noticed that when local homeless people accepted services to transition out of homelessness, a massive amount of detritus remained on our hillsides posing a fire hazard to the community. Tom mapped out all the encampments and spent countless days on cleanup duty. He initiated project CLEANup to marshal the resources needed to accomplish this major effort. He designed an email account and recruited 30 volunteers to remove all 19 abandoned encampments along Temescal Canyon Rd., filling a 40-yard dumpster. Among the members of the cleanup team were representatives from the City, and a formerly homeless man from the Palisades! For springing into action and making our community cleaner and safer, Tom is well deserving of a Golden Sparkplug Award.

Nancy Klopper, a long-time Palisadian has been selected for the Pride of the Palsades Award. You may recall that LA Times columnist Steve Lopez wrote a heart wrenching piece about Nancy’s work in tracking down the Norwegian parents of a severely mentally ill homeless woman nicknamed “Pretty Blonde.” In a way, that was the easy part. In order to complete a family reunion, the parents, who thought their daughter might be dead, had to be flown to LA, reunited and housed while their daughter was treated, pro-bono, at UCLA Hospital and upon completion of treatment, all flown back to Europe with a UCLA caregiver assisting. None of this would have happened without Nancy’s connective reach and tireless work. Her efforts were discouraged at first, but she persevered and the homeless woman code named “Pretty Blonde” is now in the care of her family. Nancy also has been a valued behind-the-scenes PAPA volunteer for 4th of July Parade. For her strong community spirit as well as perseverance in the face of challenges dealing with a chronically homeless and mentally ill woman, Nancy is most deserving of the Pride of the Palisades Award. This is not an annual award and it takes a special person like Nancy to earn this special recognition.


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Voting Members in Attendance:  Maryam Zar, George Wolfberg, Allison Polhill, Richard Cohen, Chris Spitz, David Kaplan, Sue Kohl, Peter Culhane, Cathy Russell, Danielle Samulon, Lou Kamer, Gil Dembo, Sarah Conner, Bruce Schwartz

Voting Alternates:  Susan Payne, Jenny Hope Cote, Kelly Comras, Andrew Wolfberg

Non-voting Advisors and Alternates:  Richard Blumenberg, Barbara Kohn, Matthew Rodman, Steve Boyers, Marilyn Wexler, Sharon Kilbride

1.    Certification of Quorum.  Chair Maryam Zar called the meeting to order at 7:05 pm and certified that a quorum was present.

2.    Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  Event Host Sam Lagana read the Mission Statement.

3.    Introduction of Board and Audience.  Waived by the Chair. Chair/President Emeritus Chris Spitz and Vice-Chair George Wolfberg introduced the past honorees in attendance.

4.    Approval of Minutes & Upcoming Meetings.  1) Approval of Minutes: distribution and approval of 11/9/17 minutes deferred. 2) Upcoming meetings: 1/11/18 and 1/25/18.

5.    Consideration of Agenda.  The agenda was as distributed.

6.    Treasurer’s Report – Deferred to 1/11/18.

7.    General Public Comment on local issues – Deferred to 1/11/18.

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns – Deferred to 1/11/18.

9.    Reports from Committees – None.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    2017 PPCC Awards Presentation.

Event Committee Chair Peter Culhane introduced Event Host Sam Lagana, who in turn welcomed all in attendance and introduced the Awards presenters. The Chair, members of the Board and the Awards Selection Committee, past Awardees and Elected Officials and their representatives recognized the Awardees and presented awards and certificates as follows: Citizen of the Year – Bruce Schwartz. Golden Sparkplugs – Tom Creed, Matthew Rodman, Marie Steckmest and Debbie Warfel. Pride of the Palisades – Nancy Klopper. Special recognition was also given to Rusty Redican and other LAPD officers for their service to the community. Silent and Live Auctions followed.

12.    Adjournment.  Secretary at the Chair’s direction adjourned the meeting at 9:30 pm.


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