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Unless otherwise noted, all meetings through the current officers’ term (June 30,  2023) held via Zoom videoconference and recorded for secretarial purposes only.


1.    Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission. 
The President called the meeting to order at 6:08pm. Sue Kohl read the PPCC mission.

2.    Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
The President called roll and certified that we had quorum.

Voting board members present: Maryam Zar, Randy Young, Jenny Li, Beth HoldenGarland, David Card, Murray Levy, Bruce Schwartz, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Kimberly Bloom, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Reza Akef, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Greg Heidt, Barbara Kohn, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker.

Non-voting board members present: Joanna Spak, Nancy Niles, Michael Edlen, Leeanne Sanderson, Sue Kohl, Rick McGeagh, Kevin Niles.

3.    Introduction of attendees.
The President deferred introduction of all attendees, but did introduce guest speaker: Donna Arrechea, Director, 3-1-1 Call Center. Donna recommended the use of the MY LA 311 services and mobile app to report service requests like park maintenance, trees down, graffiti, tree dumping, etc. Donna was short with time, but willing to come back to attend another meeting and answer questions.  Sidewalks, she said, are generally the homeowner’s responsibility in LA, but the city will step in to make sure sidewalks are accessible. There is a 7 to 10-year request time. The President thanked Ms. Arrechea and invited her to come back to another meeting with questions sent in advance. A comment in the chat said the 311 app has been effective for graffiti removal.  Chris Spitz (At-large rep.) noted that the PPCC website has a link to the 311 app.

4.    Approval of Minutes.
The minutes of November 10, 2022 were approved without objection.

5.    Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings.
The President noted that on January 26th, we will have a presentation by Alex Helou, Assistant Director at LA Sanitation, as well as Deborah Hong from LADWP.  We might also meet the new CD11 Field Deputy.

6.    Treasurer’s Report.
Following the PPCC Holiday Dinner and Gala event, the bank balance is $55,659.52. This balance is higher than what we began with in July. Thanked Karen Ridgley and Haldis Toppel, Event Committee Co-Chairs, for their help in tallying the income/expenses of the gala.    

7.    General Public Comment — None. 

8.    Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.  The President announced that she hosted a walk-through of Potrero Canyon Park with Area and At-large Reps in order to have a more informed conversation around park issues at this, and other, meetings. She will be appointing a committee.

8.1.2.   She announced that she has met with Traci Park and Gaby Medina regarding Palisadian matters, including Potrero issues.

8.1.3.  The President noted that LADWP will present to our Board next time we meet.

8.2.    From Officers.

8.2.1.   Randy Young announced a presentation he will be making about Potrero Canyon on January 17th at 7pm at Theater Palisades for the Historical Society. Reservations are available online.

8.2.2.   From At-Large and Area Representatives.

8.3.1 [numbering incorrect].  Reza Akef, Area 8, announced that February Genesis Golf Open sponsored by the Tiger Woods Foundation is upon us. Please let him know of any issues, poor experiences, concerns about the open.

8.2.3.   Karen Ridgley, Area 4, a tree on Las Casas needs to be removed. Asks, how do we go about getting basic city service to do what is necessary? Also, vehicles are driving up on curbs near Asilomar Park and the curbs are damaged. Need curb repairs. The President said CD11 is hiring a new Palisades field deputy who may help. Also, please call the fire department about dangerous trees.

8.3.    From Organizational Representatives.

8.3.1.   Kevin Niles, American Legion, announced the Grand Opening of the  American Legion: Sat Jan 28th , from 2pm to 6pm at the American Legion location. There will be a street closure from Swarthmore to Alma Real and a ribbon cutting ceremony at 3pm. All are invited. An invitation with a QR code for RSVP has been shared. The President noted that she is not at her usual laptop because of heavy traffic on PCH so she diverted to the home of her parents where she does not have a laptop and is working off her telephone and will not be able to share the invitation on screen but will include it in the minutes. See the invitation [link] below.

8.3.2.   Rick McGeagh, PPBA, announced that the PPBA will be holding evaluations for approximately 500 kids on Saturday January 20th and Sunday January 21st. Also reported a sinkhole in the path around the field. Will be following up with RAP and city maintenance people, and are hoping it is addressed before the next set of rains.

8.4.   From Government Offices / Representatives.

8.4.1.   Brian Espin.  LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades.
Officer Espin showed us the “heat map” of crime density and gave us a year-on-year report of Palisades crime statistics. He noted that last year we saw an increase in rapes (5 in 2022 versus 3 in 2021). These were not stranger rapes and all involved intoxication of some sort. He said we were higher in robberies at PCH and Sunset Blvd., but lower also in Aggravated Assaults. Problem spots are evenings down by PCH. Burglaries saw an up-tick during the week of Christmas, when we had 8 or 9 in the area. Other than that, we have been trending well for most of the year. He attributes the lower statistics to community vigilance and the Beach Unit with 7 days coverage using 4 officers. They’ve been out each day with PPTFH volunteers and are clearing out encampments. Bluffs are clear now, but that may change. He suggested we keep LAPD and the PPTFH aware if we see anything.  Area 6 Rep, Cindy Simon, voiced general concern over the uptick in robberies and home break-ins.  The President said she’d like to see the Palisades car not have to leave. SLO Espin said he’d like to see that as well. Reported three crimes in the first week of January.  SLO Espin noted that on February 25th, LAPD will be holding its Safety Fair at West LA Station.  The Fair will include catalytic converter etching, and SLOs along with Captains will be available to answer questions.

8.4.2.   Zac Gaidzik, (temporary) Deputy, County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, District 3.  Zach reports that Supervisor Horvath passed a motion co-authored by Sup. Barker, declaring a homelessness emergency across LA County.  This ensures that all resources are being used to deal with homelessness. Also co-authored a motion to make Narcan (Naloxone), available to all emergency providers as LA sees a rise in overdoses across LA. These drugs can save the lives of people who are experiencing an overdose that may otherwise be fatal. These are widely used by EMS and by first responders with no significant adverse reaction. Notes the PIT homeless count coming up on January 25th  and informs us that youth homelessness, particularly among LGBTQ + populations, is on the rise and that Supervisor Horvath is focused on addressing this troubling trend. The President welcomed Zach as part of the newly elected Sup. Horvath team, and congratulated Lindsey Horvath again on her election to the LA County Board of Supervisors.

8.4.3.   Gabriela Medina, CD11 District Director, Councilmember Traci Park.
Gaby introduced herself as the Councilwoman’s new District Director. She started in City Council as a staffer in 2012, with CM Joe Buscaino. They are hiring a new field deputy on Friday. CM Park has introduced the Potrero Canyon Park hours motion, as well as a new 41.18 motion. In partnership with law enforcement and community leaders, they’ve identified problem spots to address. They have implemented outreach to address homelessness through a compassionate lens with choices for housing, and have housed 100 individuals already.  This is part of the “Inside Safe” program (Mayor Bass), and are hopeful they’ll house more because this is the “number one” issue in the district. Her next priority is public safety.

She looks forward to working with all of us. “There is no issue too small or too large.” CM Park sends her regards.

Said she is in conversations with Sonya Jimenez and Jasmine Dowlatshahi from RAP and plans a walk though Potrero Canyon Park in order to address some of the issues that remain unresolved. Wants to streamline communication but promises they are on top of Park issues.

Veronica de la Cruz Robles was also at the meeting, and said she’s known Gaby Medina for years and works well with her. The President said she was glad to see the tripartite of good working relationships between the Council Office, LAPD and the Office of the City Attorney. Veronica said no changes have been made to staff or policy under newly elected City Attorney, Heidi Feldstein Soto.

8.4.4.   Rad Nowroozi introduced himself as Senator Ben Allen’s Field Deputy (SD 24). Also said he is the Caltrans rep to the community. The big news this week in the state capital was the budget announcement – instead of a surplus there is a projected 22billion-dollar shortfall. There is a rainy-day fund, that was set up in past years when there had been a surplus, so the state is doing fine. The two parts of the budget that are most impacted are transportation and the environment (two matters Ben Allen works on).  The President asked Rad to put us in touch with Caltrans over important local matters which can be discussed offline.

8.5.    From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.

8.5.1.    Lou Kamer, PPCC Transportation Advisor.  Lou reported that PCH back up northbound around Entrada has been submitted to Caltrans and they somehow lost the thread. Light maintenance crews will be looking at the intersection to implement improvements and repairs.

Regarding flooding on PCH, we were told that PCH dips in that area and because of the runoff, there was flooding there. Caltrans has found a temporary way to move that water away, but they are looking for LA City BOE to come up with a permanent solution or ways to pump or divert the water from that area.

Also gave update regarding the Caltrans staging/dumping area along PCH – they are looking to find a solution for better use of that space.

Closing the gaps in the walls next to Casentino. Asked Caltrans maintenance to close those gaps, but they say they need right of way/access in those spots. Lou reported that he would continue to try to close those gaps for community safety and fire prevention purposes.

8.6.    Sharon Kilbride, Homelessness Advisor.  PPTFH needs volunteers for the Point In Time 2023 homeless count on January 25th.  Start time: 5/5:30 am from Corpus Christi gymnasium.  Please email to sign up and volunteer.  Sharon also announced that Dave Morena, who has spearheaded the PIT Homeless count since the first year that the PPTFH undertook that endeavor and developed the Palisades process (which often works better than the county’s), has passed away. This year PPTFH needs “all hands on deck.”  The homeless count will take place on January 25th. The board expressed its genuine condolences to the Clary/Morena family and urged people to volunteer.

8.6.1.   Chris Spitz, PPCC Primary rep to WRAC  – Deferred.

8.6.2.   K.C. Soll, Cert and Emergency Preparedness Liaison.
Structural problems under Sunset with water to feeder areas.  If there is a major earthquake, we will have difficulty delivering clean water so she proposes that people get together with neighbors and achieve neighborhood water security, in case of a major earthquake. The infrastructure is elderly so everyone should consider getting a 55-gallon water barrel into their garage – it could save lives.  Email her at

9.    Reports from Committees.

9.1.    Palisades Forestry Committee, David Card, Chair.
PFC successfully arranged for the planting of 6 new trees at the Palisades Recreation Center. El Medio is the next street they will address, so this month they will be walking up there looking for vacancies for street trees. Will Rogers State Park will have 100 new seedlings which are being grown in Ojai at a specialty nursery for later planting, along with 50 peppers (purchased by Will Rogers Foundation). Next areas will be Via de la Paz and some spots in SM.

9.2.    Holiday Event Committee, Sue Kohl (recap of Holiday event).
December 8th at Cheadle Hall, the event was a huge success. Sue thanked the awards committee chaired by Nancy and Kevin Niles, as well as the Event Committee, chaired by Haldis Toppel, with Karen Ridgley, Cindy Simon and Genevieve Bostic. The presentation of awards went well – awarded to Mike Lanning, James Cragg, Cindy Simon, Tracy Price, Hazel Tate and the Pacific Palisades Historical Society Centennial Celebration Committee.  New Councilmember Traci Park, as well as LAUSD Board VP Nick Melvoin, Janet Turner, Noah Fleishman, Sam Liu and others were on hand to present the scrolls and certificates to our honorees, and to thank them for their volunteer work in the community.

The President thanked the Event Committee and apologized for having been down with COVID for this important event. She thanked Sue Kohl for stepping in and managing the event so beautifully, and also mentioned the assistance of Kevin Niles, Genevieve Bostic, Beth Holden-Garland, and Sue Pascoe in giving the PPCC awards to the honorees and helping celebrate their important contributions to the Palisades.

10.    Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.    L.A. City 3-1-1 App Presentation (by Donna Arrechea, Director, 3-1-1 Call Center).  Deferred – asked to come back for remarks and responses to curated questions (see also Item 3 above).

11.2.    Smoking on film/movie sets (by Larry Watts, BCC)  – Deferred.

11.3.   George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon (GWPPC).

11.3.1.    Motion to Secure Park Rangers:
Motion made by At-large Rep Chris Spitz and co-sponsored by Area 6 Reps Cindy Simon and Quentin Fleming, passed unanimously.

“Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC), in the interest of public health and safety, urges Council District 11 to secure the regular service of the Los Angeles City Park Rangers to ensure that Park Rangers are assigned to monitor George Wolfberg

Park at Potrero Canyon on a daily basis so that proper usage of this passive, unattended  Park can be enforced in accordance with all laws, including ensuring that users are not  gaining access to the Park before or after operating hours and that users are not trapped or otherwise remaining in the Park after the intended sunset closing time.”

11.3.2.    Discussion and possible motion regarding standing water:
Motion made by Chris Spitz (At-large Rep), seconded by Karen Ridgle (Area 4 Rep), passes unanimously after brief explanation of possible standing water and the need for vector control monitoring until either the water is moving or is treated sufficiently to prevent a threat of gathering mosquitos.

“PPCC recognizes a current need for L.A. County Vector Control to support the opening of the George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon (GWPPC) and asks CD11 and RAP to request Vector Control personnel, on a regular basis, to test/monitor standing water gathering at various spots along the riparian way in GWPCC, until the conditions causing standing water in the riparian way are identified and corrected and/or the proposed pump which is intended to effectively recirculate the riparian water begins to function properly and ensures a moving stream that prevents the collection of standing water and/or the chance of mosquitos or other hazards associated with standing water.”

11.3.3.   Discussion and possible motion/s regarding observations made during our walk through:
A) Approved a formal “thank you” to be sent to Congressman Ted Lieu for securing $1.15 Million in the Omnibus bill for the Lateral Trail linking GWPPC with Temescal Canyon Park.

B) A request to Mayor Karen Bass and/or Councilwoman Traci Park to secure the additional short-fall for the Lateral Trail (now estimated by BOE to cost over $3M) did not pass.

  • Members wanted to understand why we need more money and would like some answers from City BOE as to costs and feasibility. Rob Weber (Legal Advisor and longtime community member working on Potrero Canyon Park issues), noted that the City and Caltrans must come to an agreement so that the path can cross the Caltrans right of way to progress. We need that first. This can all be one ask because we need to understand what the money is for, and when Caltrans and the City will come together and implement an agreement for access. Then we can begin to talk about what the path looks like and how much it will cost.
  • The President will follow up with our state representatives to help bring Caltrans and the City together. Dave Card says he has seen a line drawing of the path but there has been no real feasibility study done or detailed plans shared with the community because the City hasn’t had the money in place to begin the work. Now they have the money and should begin the engineering work to design and implement the lateral trail, notably required by the Coastal permit. Chris Spitz notes that the bridge still needs Coastal Commission approval.

C) Slope erosion – the board noted that there has been substantial slope erosion in various areas of GWPPC that must be addressed and repaired by City engineers before it damages the pedestrian trail.

  • There are other observable areas of slippage in areas of the canyon which all need repairs. There has now been an eye-opening slippage beneath the baseball field as well as the area to the right of the Frontera entrance.
  • Rick McGeagh and Sue Kohl (Area 7 and 5 First Alternates, respectively) pointed out great areas of slippage. Chris Spitz (At-large Rep) also noted fissures along the Friends Street trail. The President noted that the City has become aware of the fissures and are working on it. We will monitor, and report back. This issue will also be pointed out at the Park Advisory Board meeting where RAP members will be present. Will report back on engineering solutions proposed.
  • The President will inform the City about soil slippage along the trail, at the Frontera gate, the Friends Street fissures, the baseball field hole and the slope below it, and ask for them to be repaired.

D) Biking – Electric, battery operated or motorized bikes and scooters to be prohibited; pedal bikes and non-motorized scooters allowed only on the 12-ft. wide, main pedestrian trail (appropriate “no motorized vehicles” LAMC section added to the signage)  – Tabled.

E) Linking QR code to GWPPC family information and signage  – Tabled.

F) Dogs off leash – urge City to seriously pursue dog park in Pacific Palisades. – Affirmed in keeping with previously approved motion to support.

G) Wires and plastic pipe(s) sticking out along the pedestrian pathway – it was agreed that we would ask the City to address.

  • Randy Young suggested that this is a breaking-in time which requires a blueprint of walkthrough/inspection.
  • The President reiterated that she will be appointing a Potrero Canyon Monitoring Committee, which will aim to monitor ongoing issues and successes at Potrero Canyon Park, including implementing regular walk-abouts with city officials and community members, as well as streamlined communication, maintenance contract monitoring, weeding and more.

H) Gates: all pedestrian gates must function properly (latched fully-closed automatically at sunset and opened automatically at sunrise); the Rhino gate at the end of the pedestrian trail should be operable, or gaps created on both sides of the gate posts that are just wide enough for pedestrian passage, so pedestrians can gain access to the rest of the trail which descends down to the mouth of the canyon (to where the Lateral Trail would begin).

– Chris Spitz (At-large Rep) described some latching problems at gates but reported that both the Friends Street and the Frontera gate locking mechanisms have been corrected and seem to be operating properly  – Rhino gate not addressed.

I) Fencing at Frontera Entrance:  Fencing to the left side of the vehicle gate (when entering GWPPC) should be raised to a height of 6 ft. from the top of the curb/retaining wall where persons have been observed climbing over the now-lower fencing at that point in order to gain access at nighttime.

– Chris Spitz (At-large Rep) reports that people are climbing the lower part of the gate. The President reports that the City has acknowledged that the fencing needs to be made uniform at 6 feet. Board agrees that the City should be made aware, and that repairs or adjustments should be forthcoming. If corrections are not made, we will have the committee follow up.

– Karen Ridgley (Area 4 Rep) brought up the self-cleaning bathrooms at Potrero. The President says she will bring it to the attention of RAP and believes this will be the kind of ongoing monitoring that the new committee will concern itself with.

J) Additional signage on pedestrian gates:  Add clear signs on the Frontera, baseball field and Friends St. gates stating to the effect “Park Closed (No Entry) Sunset to Sunrise.” There should be a passive park sign at each entry  – Tabled.

11.4.   Interactive Kiosk Experience (IKE) Program – discussion and motion (recommended by WRAC: to oppose the City’s proposed IKE program.

– Motion made by Chris Spitz (At-large Primary) and seconded by Karen Ridgley (Area 4 Primary) passed unanimously:

“Pacific Palisades Community Council opposes the IKE program present in Council File 22-1154 for the following reasons:

  • This project may result in the installation of digital advertising structures along designated Scenic Highways for which Scenic Corridor Plans have not been adopted, such as Sunset Blvd.; as such, the project violates the Mobility Element of the City’s General Plan (Appendix B, Scenic Highways Guidelines).There is no local competitive bidding process.
  • This project needs a financial analysis, as it is using public space to generate revenue. This project may have negative environmental impacts and there is no environmental review (CEQA).
  • This project creates visual pollution
  • This project is a source of driver distraction and poses a threat to safe driving.”

12.    Adjournment. The meeting was adjourned at 8:13pm.

[ATTACHMENT — Item 8.3.1:  Link to invitation:]


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.

The President called the meeting to order at 6:03pm. Karen Ridgley read the PPCC Mission Statement.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.

Voting members present: Maryam Zar, David Card, Jenny Li, Beth Holden-Garland, Randy Young, Murray Levy, Diana Danielle, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Kimberly Bloom, Quentin Fleming, Julie Silliman, Rick McGeagh, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Greg Heidt, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker.

Non-voting Alternates present:  Kevin Niles, Joanna Spak, Michael Edlen, Nancy Niles, Daphne Gronich, Sue Kohl.

3.   Introduction of attendees.

The President noted Deborah Hong from LADWP and Alex Helou, Assistant Director at LA Sanitation, as attending the meeting and making presentations.

4.   Approval of Minutes: The January 12, 2023 minutes were approved with one amendment which was to correct that language of the IKE motion which passed at the last meeting.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings:

The agenda was considered as presented. The President noted highlights of upcoming meetings: February 9: Congressman Brad Sherman, Donna Arrechea – LA City 311 App.
March 23: Presentation by Brian Hale, LADOT Chief of Parking Enforcement and Tim Fremaux, Sr. Transportation Engineer, LADOT – to discuss parking issues as well as crosswalks and updates on intersections.  The President reminded the board to send in their questions for Donna Arrechea.

6.   Treasurer’s Report. 

Randy Young reported that all expenses from the Holiday event have been paid and our account balance is $54,250. Next month he will take the finances to get our filing done for end of year tax returns.

7.   General Public Comment.  None

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.    From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President informed the board that the Department of Cannabis Regulation will be notifying PPCC (and BCC) when businesses receive temporary approvals to operate in our community. This was noticed to us by CM Traci Park’s office to whom we had made this request (following the “Cookies” cannabis dispensary which opened on San Vicente Blvd., in Brentwood).

8.1.2.   The President announced that she would be appointing three members to the Joint BCC Committee to work on all common matters related to cannabis dispensaries. BCC has appointed four people.  Haldis Toppel (Area 3 Rep) volunteered for PPCC.

8.1.3.   The President provided a recap of the PAB board meeting which took place the day before. She informed the board that per RAP, the park staff had contacted County Vector Control, and someone had come out and tested the water. They had determined that the recent rains had flushed out the standing water and there was no trace of mosquitos or evidence of staid water at the time of the visit. But the water was treated, and plans are in place for regular vector control visits until further notice.

The PAB board was also told that various instances and locations of soil slippage were known to the BOE team and were being addressed. RAP informed the PAB board that the contractor had not yet taken over park management from LA BOE, but when they do, Maintenance Supervisor, Robert Buenrostro, will be reporting to the PAB regularly.

On the topic of park ranger support, the PAB moved to ask that Potrero Park be deemed a “Regional Park” and with it, receive all the resources available and appropriate for such a designation, including ranger support (and Quimby money for ADA compliant bathrooms). Bathrooms, fencing and other matters were also noted and being addressed.

8.1.4.   The President said she was going to impart to the board her contemporaneous impression of the LADWP scoping meeting after having listened to the public event, but in light of DWP’s announcement tonight thinks it is now not necessary.

8.1.5.   The President encouraged all to write-in as public comment to council file 23-4118-S1 at: which designates “prohibited locations” for the enforcement of 41.18. (the amended version of which no longer requires prohibited locations to be specified as a requisite for enforcement), and said PPCC had written its own letter as well. [See:]

8.1.6.   The President provided an update regarding conversations with State officials since our last meeting and the motion to get our State reps to help bring the City and Caltrans together over the lateral trail (plan and costs). She announced that she and two other Board members had met with Sen. Ben Allen’s staff to review the lateral trail and to go over what we need from them in order to bring everyone together — especially, to get Caltrans and the City to enter into a collaborative agreement so that BOE can have access to assess the feasibility of the trail and provide to this community an estimate of time and costs.

8.1.7.   Formation of Potrero Canyon Community Committee (for monitoring or oversight) to monitor issues in the canyon and to streamline communication with the City so that the City knows what those issues are and can address them as they arise.

  1. Jenny Li (Vice-President)
  2. Dave Card (Chair Emeritus)
  3. Chris Spitz (At-large Rep)
  4. Rob Weber (Legal Advisor)
  5. Julie Silliman (Area 7 Rep)
  6. Cindy Simon (Area 6 Rep)
  7. Caroline Wittcoff (West rim resident)
  8. Sue Kohl (Area 5 1st Alternate)
  9. Rick McGeagh (PPBA Rep & Area 7 1st Alternate)
  10. John Padden (Palisades PRIDE Rep)

8.1.8.   The President proposed a discussion of formation of a Street Services Priority Committee comprised of Area reps (a similar committee was formed in 2005 and was very effective). The consensus was to wait until the upcoming discussion with Donna Arrechea from LA 311 to see if this committee would be useful or if the 311 app is now effective enough that we do not need a prioritizing committee, since things have changed so much.  Rick McGeagh said the city street leading up to the Palisades Recreation Center needs paving and was wondering if we were to have a list of priorities, could we hasten these street services. There was another huge pothole in front of the American Legion and the post office. Brian Espin suggests we continue to use the 311 app, which records all submissions.

8.1.9.   The President offered her own, as well as the community’s, heartfelt condolences on the passing of David Morena, who was one of the founders of the PPTFH, and spearheaded the very first PIT Count held by Pacific Palisades, exceeding expectations and setting the standard for homeless count organization. He will be missed and we offer our deepest sympathies to Kim Clary and her family. Our condolences to Kim Clary, the community and to PPTFH.

8.2.   From Officers

8.2.1.   Jenny Li (Vice-President) reported that she had met with the new joint Palisades/Malibu Chamber Vice President, Robyn Ritter Simon, and announced that they are looking for Palisadian board members. Jenny suggested that Palisadians get involved and become members. She offered people to email her for more information and to be put in touch with the new chamber people.

8.2.2.   Beth Holden-Garland (Secretary) reported that we have set up an Instagram account for PPCC (@pacPalicc), and encouraged everyone to click over and follow us.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area RepresentativesNone.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives

8.4.1.   Rick McGeagh (PPBA Rep) announced that PPBA had a record number of kids participating in evaluations, and that baseball season will begin (with 520 kids participating) on Feb 11th and the pancake breakfast will be on March 18.

8.4.2.   Shirley Haggstrom (TCA Rep) invited everyone to join TCA on Sunday, January 29 for an historic hike to Murphy Ranch (about four miles).  Bring water and a snack, and wear sturdy shoes. Meet on Latimer Rd., see also .

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives

8.5.1.   Brian Espin, LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades, reported that there have been five burglaries reported so far in January, and that is higher than the same month last year. Please be vigilant, make sure you lock doors and clear areas that may provide climbing or scaling opportunities to upstairs or balconies. Tesla vehicles have recording feature (sentry mode) that can be helpful in solving crimes. Please leave those on. Courtney Macker (PPRA Rep) reported on RVs on Via Floresta. Brian Espin said he would drive over and make sure he is informed and aware.

8.5.2.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Councilmember Traci Park, introduced himself to the community, and said he just started on Friday after working for ASM Mike Fong. He feels “an amazing energy” at the Councilmember’s office and pledged he would be active in Pacific Palisades and Brentwood. He announced that the CD11 office has already housed over 100 people in Venice and is working hard to impact homelessness. He will be helping us with city services and attending PPCC meetings going forward. He pledged his support and attention to our two communities.

8.5.3.   Taleen Keuroghlian, Congressman Brad Sherman, Field Representative for the area, introduced herself and explained that the Palisades is a new neighborhood for Congressman Brad Sherman. Described their field services out of the Sherman Oaks office and invited all to the Telephone Town Hall on February 2nd.  Confirmed that Congressman Sherman will be at the next PPCC meeting and will be taking questions.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC RepresentativesNone.

9.   Reports from Committees.

9.1.   Holiday Event Committee.  Haldis Toppel, Committee Chair, reported that the 2022 Holiday and Gala event was a success and made back most of its expenditures. The committee had budgeted selling 130 tickets and sold 96. The event emerged with a $400 loss. A detailed report of costs and income has been sent to Randy Young, Treasurer and will be studied for next year. Haldis thanked the members of the Event Committee and the board for their support. The President said she made up for the $400 shortfall in real time with an online donation.

10.   Old Business – None.

11.    New Business.

11.1.   Smoking on film/movie sets.

Larry Watts, Brentwood Community Council (BCC) Vice Chairman, made a presentation to  the board regarding the widespread smoking that is common on film sets. He informed the  board that a BCC board member had seen someone smoking on a film set in a Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone in Brentwood and brought this to the attention of the off-duty LAPD officer providing security on the set. The Officer ignored the violation and said enforcing the ordinance was “not his job.” Mr. Watts informed us that permits issued by FilmLA include language requiring film production companies to comply with applicable laws and regulations, but enforcement of LAMC § 57.4908.6, which prohibits smoking, seems to slip through the cracks.

Chris Spitz (PPCC At-large Rep) made a motion for PPCC to consider [see text below]. Maryam Zar seconded the motion. Chris Spitz announced that the BCC, PPCC and Bel Air-Beverly Crest NC have each adopted similar resolutions urging the City to bring this matter to the attention of film set crews and managers. Larry Watts informed PPCC about the recent motion passed by BCC, prohibiting smoking on film sets in/near the VHFHSZs and asking the City’s Film Coordinator and Industry Liaison to ensure proper enforcement of no smoking on film sets, through the authority of the Motion Picture and Television Manager.

A vote was taken and the motion below passed unanimously by the PPCC board, as follows:

“WHEREAS the entirety of Pacific Palisades is in the Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone (VHFHSZ);
WHEREAS outdoor smoking is prohibited in the VHFHSZ;
WHEREAS, permits for film shoots are regularly issued by FilmLA for locations within a VHFHSZ;
WHEREAS, film permits can and do contain special conditions for numerous locations within the City;
WHEREAS, there are currently no special conditions limiting smoking included in film permits issued by FilmLA for locations within a VHFHSZ; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Public Works has a dedicated Motion Picture and Television Manager, to act as the FilmLA contract administrator;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the Pacific Palisades Community Council (PPCC) urges the Motion Picture and Television Manager for the Board of Public Works to require FilmLA to include a specific no outdoor smoking prohibition in all film permits issued for locations within a VHFHSZ.”

11.2.   George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon (GWPPC).

The President brought up discussion and possible motion on the two issues below.

A) Signage: Linking QR code to GWPPC family information and signage.

B) Biking – Electric, battery operated or motorized bikes and scooters to be prohibited; pedal bikes and non-motorized scooters allowed only on the 12-ft. wide, main pedestrian trail (“no motorized vehicles” LAMC section added to the signage).

C) Wires and plastic pipe(s) sticking out along the pedestrian pathway – city to address.

Dave Card suggested that we table these items and, instead, send them to the newly formed oversight committee to discuss these issues in a complete way and bring recommendations/committee consensus to the PPCC board. Chris Spitz concurred. Julie Silliman says it’s clear that some additional park signs are needed because prohibited behavior is occurring at the park, but the signs need to be coordinated with what’s already there so we don’t have too much signage. Tone and visuals are important and QR codes are a good thing to have on signs and can be helpful as a tool to offer additional information. In our case, it might be an issue to see what website to connect to:  LA City’s website or the Wolfberg family website which is also linked on our website and which Dianne Wolfberg (resident; in attendance) also put in the chat. The President suggested that this will be discussed at the new committee with suggestions/recommendations brought to the board. Dave Card concurred that we should guard against “sign pollution”, and all agreed that these issues should go to the new committee for discussion.  Diane Wolfberg also suggested that we keep photographs of the development/evolution of the park and its plantings as they grow. 

11.3.   Alex Helou, LA Sanitation.

Mr. Helou and Paul Cobian of LA Sanitation gave a Power Point presentation on recycling and the new curbside composting program.  [See the presentation here:]

11.4.   Deborah Hong, LADWP Community Affairs Liaison.

Ms. Hong announced that she would turn the presentation over to Katherine Rubin, LADWP Director of Environmental Affairs.  The presentation was intended to be focused on the impending Environmental Study on the proposed substation at the property owned by LADWP on Marquez Avenue, next to Marquez Charter Elementary School.  However, Ms. Rubin read a statement announcing that there would be no presentation because LADWP was going back to “model the options” for Pacific Palisades, and would return to the community and work with us to consider a substation in the Palisades, because the community needs the provision of reliable electricity. The President allowed board and public comment, nonetheless.  Before closing their presentation time, LADWP made clear that they did not make a presentation at PPCC on this day because they would not be going forward with the Environmental Study for the proposed Marquez site for a substation, and while they did not say the location was no longer an option, they did say that they were listening to the community feedback and were going to “remodel” their options. Ms. Rubin encouraged everyone to continue to comment at, and to please include name and email. [See the video of the announcement and Q/A here:]

12.  Adjournment. The President adjourned the meeting at 8:10pm.


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.
The meeting was called to order at 6:03pm.  Beth Holden-Garland read the Community Council mission.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
The Chair certified that there was quorum.

Voting members in Attendance: Maryam Zar, David Card, Jenny Li, Randy Young, Beth Holden-Garland, Murray Levy, Steve Cron. Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Kimberly Bloom, Julie Silliman, Reza Akef, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Alisa Wolfson, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Genevieve Bostic, Courtney Macker, Rick McGeagh.

Non voting board members in attendance: Joanna Spak, Bruce Schwartz, Michael Edlen, Sue Kohl, Daphne Gronich, Ryan Craig, Jessica Rogers.

3.   Introduction of attendees.
US Congressman, Brad Sherman
Joey Castruita, LADWP Water Systems Superintendent

4.   Approval of Minutes:  The January 26, 2023 were approved as presented

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings.
The agenda was considered as presented.

6.   Treasurer’s Report.
Randy Young reported that PPCC has $53,790.63 as of February 1, 2023. The Treasurer reported that he is putting together annual information for our accountant and will go over that at the appropriate time.

7.   General Public Comment.  None

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President announced she’s been informed by the Council Office that Streets LA is willing to meet with us and discuss the elements of the new street furniture/bus shelter program that we would not like to see implemented here in PP.

8.1.2.   The President informed everyone that she and a few others have met with ASM Irwin to talk about the need to bring Caltrans and BOE to the table over access and forward plans/engineering foe the lateral trail. She further said that Sen ben Allen’s office had informed her that they had a meeting set up with Caltrans after having discussed joint matters with the office of Traci Park, but Caltrans cancelled that meeting at the last minute. A call is being planned for new updates and both State Assemblymember Irwin, and State Senator Allen are now working and pressing on our behalf to bring the parties together and asses next steps for the lateral trail connecting Potrero Canyon Park to the beach.

8.1.3.   The President announced that the first meeting of the Potrero Canyon Park Oversight Committee had convened, and members had laid out the purpose of the committee and the scope of its work. Members worked well together and laid out early goals which include working on signage and ensuring that dogs are not off-leash in the park (detrimental to the habitat and topography) but support the long-planned dog park in the Palisades. A letter has been sent on behalf of the community, following that meeting, and has already been acknowledged. (See letter: ).

8.2.   From Officers.

8.2.1.   Jenny Li, VP, reported that she has set up an email for the Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee (PCOC): This is a repository for emails where we will collect suggestions and input from the community regarding Potrero Canyon, discuss within the committee, and field to the appropriate agencies for maximum effect, engagement and responsiveness. There will be an auto response that writers will receive, and be assured that we have received their communication, and the committee will address their concerns/observations.

Jenny also reported on the Malibu Palisades Chamber but noted that after conversations with the new Chamber folks, there seems to be little traction in the Palisades, even though they’ve been trying outreach among Palisades businesses. Noted that they are looking for Palisadians and encouraged board members to investigate membership. She also suggested that they make a presentation to the board.

Kimberly Bloom commented that the Potrero Committee needs to report to area reps so they can inform their constituents and respond to their queries. She would like to know where to go to see the repairs/improvements that are being down/issues been fixed. The President responded that those replies would come from the Committee, as information becomes available.

Kimberly also suggested that people join the Chamber. She said she’d be joining the Chamber and encouraged all others to do the same. The President suggested that Kimberly Bloom be in touch with the new Chamber leaders so she can help them develop some outreach strategies to Palisadian businesses. She believes the value proposition is the key factor in gaining new members. Suggested we list Chamber members who are Palisadian businesses. The President said that for as long as the Chamber is not a member of the PPCC board, we could not so that, but she would welcome a Chamber presentation to the board.

John Padden reminded all that the character of the Chamber has evolved from the brick-and-mortar presence to an online presence, the question is: what the Chamber is going to be able to do for local businesses. The question is, what is the value proposition?

8.2.2.   Beth Holden-Garland, Secretary, reported that Instagram and Facebook are active, and asked all to please follow. We have most recently posted about a Community Clean-up on Saturday, March 4th, from 9 am to noon, hosted by the Palisades Y, the Palisades Ambassadors and the Village Green.

8.4.   From At-Large and Area Representatives.

8.4.1.   Haldis Toppel, Area Three Rep – spoke about the flooding during the LAWD presentation (see below).

8.4.2.   Chris Spitz, At-large Rep – spoke about the need for a letter in support of proposed amendment to the ordinance that would codify PCP as a sunrise to sunset park. She submitted a letter as an individual and the PPCC subsequently submitted a letter to the Neighborhoods and Community Enrichment Committee of City Council (Hernandez, Lee, Hutt) on behalf of the organization, based on past principles. See the letter here:

8.4.3.   Karen Ridgley, Area Four Rep – reported that the Asilomar Bluffs had some graffiti sprayed on benches. She reported it to 311 and it has been cleaned. She has also reported the continuing wood/log dump along Temescal Canyon Rd., but has been told she needs an address, which the location does not have. The President said she’d inquire with Donna Arrechea of 311 as to how to flag the request in the appropriate category (illegal dumping without a specific address).  Karen Ridgley noted that these dumpings are unsafe as well as a blight.

She also reported that the Asilomar View Park will undergo a major project to stabilize the bluff. A start date has not yet been provided but it will take 270 days to finish. The President shared the power point that was sent to us with respect to the project and the timeline. (See )

8.4.4.   Reza Akef, Area Eight Rep, reported a swastika having been spray painted on his construction sight bordering Potrero Canyon. He said the four-foot fence currently installed is an issue because it is a lower height than the private fences that are six feet high, and the step effectively creates a ladder into people’s yards. Reza has discussed this with BOE and they are also worried about this height discrepancy. The issue of fence security, he says, must be addressed.

8.5.   From Organizational Representatives.

8.5.1.   YMCA – the President reported that a community gardening event will be held at the Village Green, Saturday March 4, 9-noon, sponsored by YMCA and the Palisades Ambassadors

8.5.2.   PPBA – Sue Kohl reported that the PPBA breakfast date has been changed to March 11th.

8.5.3.   TCA – Shirley Haggstrom and Randy Young reported that TCA hike last week went very well.

8.6.   From Government Offices / Representatives.

8.6.1.   Brian Espin, LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades:
SLO Espin reported on the attempted rape at Will Rogers each on Saturday at 6:30pm. A woman was approached by the suspect, put his hand on her mouth and threatened her with sexual assault while brandishing a bladed weapon (knife or box cutter). He forced her to walk up toward the street. She was able to create distance and broke away. The victim struggled away and fled. The suspect returned to the beach without pursuing her. A formal bulletin with a sketch of the perpetrator was created and will be circulated in the detectives’ formal bulletin. The President posted that attached sketch for board members.

Last week, crime was up with 5 burglaries and 6 auto related crimes. Espin spoke with detectives for any trends or patterns. None detected. Detectives have made an arrest on a burglary a few weeks ago, which has turned out to be related to a South End gang. Burglars are disabling power to the house (from back yard access) and disable Wi-Fi cameras. This also limits notifications, so LAPD recommends putting a lock on the area where power feeds into your home Wi-Fi. Mentioned the Sentry mode of Tesla cars again. Those have been helpful to detectives. Also suggest security cameras facing toward the street.

The President asked about a car accident at Paul Revere Middle School involving a student. SLO Espin reported that a student in the crosswalk was hot by a car driven by a parent who was turning right on red struck the child, who sustained severe leg injuries and was transported to the hospital. The President expressed alarm at the incident.

Courtney Macker, Organizational Representative for PPRA was concerned about the attempted rape and questioned why it took so long for SLO Espin to report about the crime and send a bulletin to the community. She said, “this is very alarming and completely unacceptable.”  She said the fact that the community knows more than LAPD SLO does, is worrisome. She wanted to know the pepper spray she apparently spared to get away was not included in the report. SLO Espin explained that he received the information form the crime report, which did not mention any pepper spray deployed. Espin explained that he did not interview the victim in order to not retraumatize her since the detectives had already handled the case and spoken to the victim. He admitted that there was a lapse in communication to the community, due to SLO Espin being off duty and in the dessert camping with his son, but that he shared in his report on Monday, all the vetted and allowable information he was given by LAPD command.

Courtney followed up by mentioning that reported the attempted the rape almost immediately. She asked why it took Espin 12 hours to report. Espin explained that “crimemapping” reflects all filed reports, as they are made. Espin admitted that there was a lapse in communication and understood the frustration and said LAPD command was going to review communications strategy.

The President informed the board that Captain Heredia had reached out to her and admitted that there was a failure of communication and that they would be addressing that.  She said she had suggested a community meeting on public safety to report new strategies to the community and also hear community concerns as they work on better, more swift, communications with the community on public safety.

Jessica Rogers, Alternate for PPRA, warned SLO Espin that the community had become used to a “different level of expertise” and communication with the community, and she didn’t feel that he was delivering the same standard of communication. She mentioned that Officer Redican had brought this information to some in the community, and she would like to know if the dedicated beech patrol mentioned by Captain Heredia as having been allocated to the community, is still intact. She restated that there is a shortage of staff at LAPD and she’d like to partner with SLO Espin on public safety but feels that too many things “fall through the cracks.”

SLO Espin confirmed that the beech patrol is dedicated to the Palisades and is in fact still operating in the Palisades. Two of the four officers are now being called away to other high crime areas on the westside, but are still out there, in the Palisades. There were two officers on the beach on the day of the rape incident, but not at the time of the attempted rape.

The President asked SLO Espin to review the officers who are part of the beach patrol. Espin informed the board that they included, Officer Bermudez (P3), Officer Vaije (probationary Officer), Officer Kufian and Officer Liam. SLO Espin made clear that the beach patrol also scours the bluffs and the village.

Kimberly Bloom, Area Five Rep, asked about police activity on Hartzell. SLO Espin had no information but said he would check on it.

Nina Kidd, Organizational Rep for Friends of the Library, asked about mailbox robberies. SLO Espin said these are federal crimes that are handled by the Postmaster.

Francine and Roger Diamond, residents in Area Six, asked for PPCC help in contacting CD11 and Traci Park in order to talk about bluffs erosion – an issue they had brought to her attention during campaigning and after the election, but have been unable to reach her or her staff. Michael Amster, CD11 Brentwood/Pacific Palisades Field Deputy, was on the call and said he would follow up. The President said she would put them in email touch.

Chris Spitz confirmed that she has seen the beach patrol officers on the beach and thanks them for their service. She also informs the board that there are contact numbers for the federal post office on our website.

Krishna Thangavelu, PPCC WRAC PSEPC Committee, suggests there must be a crisis communication methodology that works. Notes that the lifeguard station was also broken into this week, and asks for the county to set up cameras, and asks ultimately, how safe is the beach. She echoes a worry that there isn’t enough policing in the Palisades, which she characterized as “rationing” across an estimated at 26 square miles. Reiterates that the Palisades is vulnerable with Santa Monica and Malibu being better staffed. Would like to push for adequate staffing of LAPD.

8.6.2.   Zac Gaidzik, Deputy, County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, District 3.  Not present.

8.6.3.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Councilmember Traci Park joins us for the first time to report on CD11 matters. He informed us that the soil slippage at Potrero Canyon Park is being addressed. A RAP Contractor is coming out on Feb 20th for a weeklong set of repairs, with gates closed. He reported that the DRB is looking for new members and the Council Office is looking to help. He mentioned the blockage of fire road access which have been encumbered by private residents, and have created a public safety issue. The President asked him to report back about that. Michael also reported about the Inside Safe initiative in which Traci Park is very involved, providing housing in the form of hotel vouchers and healthcare. They have moved 108 unsheltered people in Venice into temporary housing. Significant progress has also been made in Del Rey with 45 individuals moved into shelter; and trash has been removed from Ballina Wetlands, in partnership with CARE operations.

Francine Diamond reiterated the help they need from CM Park and the Council Office to address the park and bluffs close to their home, where landslides threaten the safety of homes and people. This is along an LA municipal park, and so they really need the city to respond. She mentioned previous assistance from CMs Rosendahl and Bonin through the years and would like to be sure CM Park is also going to be responsive.

The President put Fran and Roger in touch with Michael in real time, and sent the history of the issue to Michael Amster for follow up.

8.6.4.   Nancy Frawley, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, Deputy.  Not present

8.6.5.   Rad Nowroozi, State Senator Ben Allen, SD24.  Not present.

8.6.6.   Taleen Keuroghlian, Congressman Brad Sherman, Deputy.  Present and staffing the Congressman, but no comment.

8.6.7.   Deborah Hong, Joey Castruita, Nathaniel Bautista, LADWP, reporting on the water main break and sink hole on Lachman Lane and Jacon Way on February 2nd, which resulted in street failure and closures.

Mr. Castruita reported that the pipe which broke was a 12” cast iron pipe which was installed in 1952, causing significant street damage and large amount flooding. Road and water main were repaired that night and temporary patch was done on the street in order to open up traffic. The street was in poor condition after more sinking, but half hour before this report, the permanent paving was completed. The street was excavated and compacted, and final paving was done, and crews completed the work at 6:15pm. They will be back to do some touch up on Marquez Terrace, but those will be done later as smaller jobs. The street is open now and permanent pavement placed.

Mr. Bautista reported that the pipe was 70 years old but still had some useful life left and the likelihood of another break in the area was low. They will continue to monitor and if anything changes, they will expedite the replacement of that main.

The President asked if there were monitors below ground to be able to foresee failures before they happen.

Mr. Castruita responded that LADWP uses modern technology to gauge pressure and other markets below ground to foresee leaks before they happen but have nothing in place that predicts breaks. When they have the chance to open the ground and test a pipe that breaks., they look further to examine the pipe and make an assessment.

Daphne Gronich, Area Four 2nd Alternate commented that street closure signage could be better to forewarn drivers that the road ahead is closed.

Mr. Castruita responded that this road was a challenge, and they could have done better with signage.

Haldis Toppel, Area 3 Primary rep thanked DWP for the quick response and repairs, as it impacted hundreds of homes up the hill that were locked in as a result of the street closure and flooding. She also thanked Michael Amster for being on the scene of February 2nd.

This is the first leak on this pipe in 70 years and if there is another leak they will expedite replacement, but this pipe is not on the 10-year replacement, at present. Mr. Bautista reiterated that pipes are monitored and if performance is compromised, they will correct.

Beth Holden-Garland asked about earthquake safety for these pipes. Mr. Bautista mentioned the various faults in the area and described an aggressive plan to replace pipes. They are adjusting to the threat appropriately and have plans in place.

8.7.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.

8.7.1.   K. Tanghavelu, PPCC Advisor to WRAC PSEPC, spoke about recent events at Will Rogers Beach.  See 8.5.1. discussion above

8.7.2.   KC Soll, PPCC Emergency Preparedness Liaison reminded the board that water will become an issue in a major earthquake 9cites the huge earthquake recently in Turkey which has cost tens of thousands of lives). She urges everyone to store water for emergency times. She suggests residents get together with neighbors and make sure that neighborhoods have 55-gallon water barrels (see ) stored for emergency purposes. Also suggested community members take cert classes which will teach skills that might be helpful in an emergency.

8.7.3.   Chris Spitz, WRAC VP, reported that there is an environmental group which is trying to prevent LADWP from exercising their water rights at the Mono Basin. There will be an online workshop on February 15th to discuss this issue. Written comments can be submitted up to March 17th.  Contact Chris for more information.

9.   Reports from Committees.

9.1.   Palisades Forestry Committee.

David Card, Committee Chair, reported that they walked El Medio looking for street tree vacancies. This is an ongoing process, and they will reach out to the neighborhood to get people to sign up for free street trees. They are also getting a cost estimate for replacing tress and installing irrigation along the property line between the residents on Alma Real and Palisades Rec Center, since trees are dying there. There is now a funding issue by LADWP for trees throughout the city, but they are working on finding places for new trees, but it will take a while to get them installed by the city.

9.2.   Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee.

9.2.1.   John Padden, committee member, reported that the PCOC met and decided to act on important current and future issues on the park. There are 11 members on the committee, all with varying degrees of interest and advocacy skill. Our objective is to monitor community input, communicate that in an organized way to the city and to follow up for responsiveness. Our goal is to make sure that before the city hands off to a third-party contractor for maintenance, some of the important community issues are addressed. We will serve as a single point of communication to the City, so please use the email and be assured that we have received your email and will address all issues.

Padden reports that we addressed signage and usage guidelines and help enforce those. Dogs off the leash has been seen and we need to address this. Lastly, maintenance with gates, public safety, soil erosion and other priorities are on the table and being addressed.

10.   Old Business.

10.1.   [Palisades Dog Park.].  The President introduced discussion of the Palisades Dog Park and reiterated our support, especially in light of the new Potrero Canyon Park opening and people often using the park grounds as areas where they let their dogs off leash. The practice jeopardizes the health of the delicate riparian way and landscaping that is just beginning to take shape at the park, and for that reason, she would like a sense of the board as to enduring support for the dog park, and would like to reiterate the importance of the dog park to the Council Office, as the new CM hears from proponents of the park.

Leslie Campbell spoke about the importance of prioritizing the dog park with Councilmember Traci Park. She said she has spoken to Michael Amster recently, as well as to Traci Park six months ago, and expects to see their support as they make their way through important district issues.

11.   New Business.

11.1.   Bus Lane Parking Violation.  The President noted that this issue is moot.

11.2.   US Congressman, Brad Sherman, joined PPCC for a meet and greet.  He spoke for approximately 10 minutes laying down his priorities and took questions for Maryam Zar, regarding Iran, Steve Cron regarding Israel, and Krishna Thangavelu regarding public safety and staffing. See the recording on our YouTube site:

12.   Adjournment.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:10 pm.


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1.  Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.

The Vice-President (presiding in the absence of the President) called the meeting to order at 6:03 pm.  The PPCC mission was read by Karen Ridgley.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.

Presiding Officer, Jenny Li, called roll and certified quorum.

Voting Board members present: Jenny Li, Randy Young, David Card, Beth Holden-Garland, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Sue Kohl, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Greg Heidt, Barbara Kohn, Kevin Niles, Rick McGeagh, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker,

Non-voting Board members present: Joanna Spak, Daphne Gronich, Alisa Wolfson, Nancy Niles, Jessica Rogers.

3.   Introduction of attendees.  Introductions were made.

4.   Approval of Minutes:.  February 9, 2023, minutes were approved as corrected.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings.  The agenda was considered as distributed.

6.   Treasurer’s Report.

Randy Young reported that he has been compiling information for our corporate tax return. As of January 31, 2023, he reported that we have $53,790.63 in our PPCC bank account.

7.   General Public Comment.
Eric Herzog and Jane Abrams (residents) were present for public comment. They commented about disaster preparedness in the Marquez Knolls/upper Enchanted area. The water main break at the corner of Lachman and Jacon last week had resulted in closing off streets that blocked many in the area. Eric asked for all to imagine a wildfire in the mountains above the Palisades and being asked to evacuate. With cars parked on both sides of the street, residents would be trying to get out while ER vehicles would be trying to get in. Jacon Way would quickly be clogged, and we could have a disaster similar to the Paradise fire where people lost their lives. Enchanted and the hills above Marquez are not the only areas with just one or two minor outlet streets. Therefore, he suggests we think, as a community, about a disaster plan worked out with the fire department as to how to evacuate safely, and perhaps schedule drills so we can find/consider alternate evacuation routes for neighborhoods who need them. There was a fire road on Lachman, but that has been blocked (Haldis Toppel, Area 3 Representative, can speak to that), and other parking rules can be considered to help evacuations. We also need to educate residents as to fire and evacuation safety measures. Jane Abrams spoke of the access road between Enchanted and Lachman – it was open, up until the late 70’s and early 80’s, but it is blocked off now. The homeowner seems to have gotten a legal permit to block that road, and that is unbelievable because it is a matter of public safety. The fact that that access road has been blocked because a property owner wanted something that benefits the property without consideration of the broader consideration of the peril, is an affront to community safety and something must be done.

The Presiding Officer called on Haldis Toppel, who had invited the public comment on this matter, to comment. Haldis urged the city, LAFD, LADWP and all other agencies involved in the matter to review the blocking of the fire access road and revive this secondary access as a matter of public safety.  Haldis noted that this is not a local Marquez issue, but a broader Palisadian issue across all hillside neighborhoods.

Lou Kamer (PPCC Transportation Advisor) commented that he has spoken to different departments about the closure and believes PPCC and others interested in public safety can do more.

Krishna Thangavelu (PPCC rep to the WRAC Public Safety Committee) commented that she has a document which demonstrates the need for strategic planning for public safety in the Palisades. This should be renewed annually because of our vulnerabilities, including wild fire, and she believes PPCC needs to bring a group together to address these issues.

Chris Spitz (At-large Representative) commented that PPCC has been concerned about issues of evacuation for years, knowing that we are entirely in the VHFSZ, and we have tried to set up evacuation drills and other preparedness exercises in the past. That is different from the gate issue, which should be worked on, and is top of mind for many.

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer. The PPCC President was not in attendance. Her announcements were noted by the Vice President who was the Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The Council Office (CD 11) has acknowledged our PCOC letter and has promised to give replies on all concerns, as well as set up a meeting to make sure we are present at the handover of work from City Engineers (BOE) to RAP Maintenance contractor.

8.1.2.   Sen. Ben Allen and ASM Jacqui Irwin’s office set up a call to discuss Caltrans and the City process of collaboration to assess the costs and plans for the Lateral trail connecting Potrero Canyon Park to the beach. We were told that progress is being made like never before and that it has been informative to learn that little has been done heretofore by way of any formal request by the City to ask for a feasibility study for the trail. The team is working to bring the trail to fruition with the bridge project on the horizon. Stay tuned for more info and a formal President’s report on discussion at the next meeting.

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus.

8.2.1.   Jenny Li (VP and Presiding Officer).  None.

8.2.2.  David Card (Chair Emeritus).
Cited the PPOC February 9th letter ( ). Waiting to hear back from the city on meetings and updates. Expect to hear back before our next PCOC meeting on the first Monday of March. We have since added two more issues: weeding and brush clearance.  The city has hired Waste Unlimited to pull weeds, and they have been out for several days. It is an ongoing job and we hope they continue through the transition period from BOE to RAP, so that weeds do not take over the Canyon. Regarding brush clearance, we would like to be able to inform homeowners how and where to clear brush and get clarity from LAFD what the policy should be for rim residents. Dave noted that repairs have begun in the Canyon – we were told they would begin to fill the erosion and put in a pipe down one of the slopes that is most eroded. Reseeding and replanting is also due to begin in the Spring. Stay tuned for more updates. Restated the purpose of the PCOC – a receptacle of comment and input from the community so that we can be informed as to community concerns and how best to respond to those or ask the city to address them. Dave noted that in case of emergency, the email for PCOC is not the method of communication. In those cases, people should call the Park office at the Palisades Rec Center, or LAPD’s non-emergency line. Things are looking great in the Canyon as the first wave of flowers are in full bloom! There is an app: “inaturalist” to identify some of the flowers – download it and take a walk in the Canyon.

Dave also reported on a Zoom call with ASM Irwin and Sen. Allen’s office where we were informed that Caltrans and BOE were finally at the table together but that not much has been done through the years to bring these agencies together and figure out how to share the use of the space at the mouth of the Canyon in order for the trail and bridge to studies for feasibility. Things are moving.  Nina Kidd (Friends of the Library Representative) suggested the SM Mountains Rec Area also has a great app people can look up.

8.2.3.   Beth Holden-Garland (Secretary).
Beth reported about pacpalicc Instagram and Facebook accounts. She asked Area and Organizational reps to send content for social media.  She also noted that longtime Palisadian Ray Liotta (Area 2 resident) is getting a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where his daughter, Karsen Liotta (Pali High graduate and Palisadian), will be accepting the honor. As a longtime friend, Beth is proud and happy for the family and encourages all to watch the Walk of Fame on their website (

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives.

8.3.1.   Murray Levy, Area One Representative.

a.   Illegal grading in Paseo Miramar.

Residents of Paseo Miramar observed ongoing illegal grading occurring which they finally stopped by physically blocking the machinery. The Council should support these residents and specifically determine which agency is responsible for enforcing grading regulations, and ensure that they do so.  He’s like to know who should residents call when they note illegal grading or excavation?  What consequences does an organization or person known to have started illegal excavations face?

b.   Hanging tree limbs on Sunset pose a community hazard.

Ms. Sylvia Kistler, a Palisades resident, told Murray that she personally saw tree limbs fall on moving cars driving on Sunset Blvd. on two occasions.  We are all aware of large tree limbs hanging over lanes on Sunset.  Can we ask the city to trim tree limbs hanging over Sunset before a falling tree causes serious injury?

c.   Prolonged excavation and construction which causes neighborhood blight, etc.

In the Castellammare area there are three examples of excavations that have been allowed to proceed in a start-stop fashion for years.   He cited several examples in Area 1 including a site covered in tattered plastic for over a year on Tramonto; a site at the corner of Revello and Positano that’s been going on and off for over 3 years; and the infamous “ground zero” at the corner of Castellammare and Revello that was started 25 years ago and never finished or stabilized.  He has pictures of these three sites which he can share.  He’d like to know if there are any similar examples in other areas of the Palisades, and his own neighbors would like to know how Building and Safety allows situations like these to remain.  Specifically, he asked of there are time limits associated with grading permits?  Does Building and Safety make any assessment of an applicant’s financial and technical ability to complete a project before issuing a grading permit?  Are there completion bonds or some other mechanism to ensure that excavations are completed or stabilized required, and when are those mechanisms triggered?  Perhaps PPCC could invite a representative from Building and Safety (suggests Frank Lara) to a future meeting to address these and other questions.  He believes this is important information for the entire community.

Chris Spitz noted that PPCC already has taken a position on completion bonds for unfinished construction/excavation, having voted in favor of a WRAC motion a few years ago which became a WRAC position in support of a motion then brought by former Councilmember Koretz in City Council, to ask Building and Safety to report on what can be done about requiring such completion bonds.  She noted that the Koretz motion apparently never moved forward in City Council but will attempt to follow up.

8.3.2.   Julie Silliman (Area 7 Representative) reported on a gala for the Uplifters at Rustic Canyon. On May 30th, a celebration of the cornerstone time capsule left by the Uplifters will take place; and a main event for the 100th year anniversary of Rustic Canyon is being planned. More information will be made public soon.

8.3.3.   Chris Spitz (At-large Representative) reported that the Friends of the Library president had asked for help with the trash can in front of the library on Alma Real, which was overflowing with trash.  Chris emailed an LA Sanitation contact from years ago (who had helped with a prior trash bin problem).  Sanitation in turn decided to add an additional day of trash pickup at the library (either on Friday or Monday, in addition to the two days that are already on the schedule) and will monitor conditions.

8.3.4.   Cindy Simon (Area 6 Representative) reported that she also noticed overflowing trash from the nearby 881 Alma Real Building. She contacted the building management and reported the overflowing trash.  She was assured that the building management would look into it. She was pleased that her phone call led to resolution of the issue rather easily. Similarly, she reported that she put up a laminated sign on the Friends St. gate (entrance to Potrero Canyon Park, across from residences) to warn users to close the gate more softly in order not to make noise, and the (homemade) posted signs seem to be working.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives

8.4.1.   Nina Kidd (Friends of the Library Representative) reported that the library is coming to life again. Please check the website for events and classes.

8.4.2.   Courtney Macker (PPRA Representative) reported on a meeting with LAPD Officer Bermudez, Capt. Heredia and Sgt. Scott and reported that they believe they’ve identified the suspect in the recent attempted rape matter, though he is not yet in custody.

8.4.3.   Barbara Kohn (PP Historical Society Alternate) reported that the Historical Society is hosting a walk at Los Liones on April 1st. It will be led by Shirley Haggstrom and Randy Young and begin at the small Amphitheatre. Departure time will be at 10 am and return at noon. Historical information and displays will be on display after the walk along with refreshments and a celebration of 50 years of history. Stay tuned for more info and RSVP in March.

8.4.4.   Rick McGeagh (PPBA Representative) reported that the annual PPBA Pancake Breakfast on opening day of the baseball season will take place on Sat., March 11. The breakfast starts at 7:30 am. Ceremonies start at 9 am and games begin at 9:30. He believes that this is the 2nd best day in the Palisades!  PPBA has a record number of players (over 500), so please join.

8.4.5.   Shirley Haggstrom (TCA Representative) reiterated that this is the 50th anniversary of the Historical Society. The hike event will be celebrating native plants, volunteerism and more. Look for the flyer in March.  She also reported that TCA is planning a March hike up to Chicken Ridge. Look for more information in March.

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives

8.5.1.   Brian Espin. LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades.  Not present.

8.5.2.   Zac Gaidzik, Deputy, County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, District 3.  Not present.

8.5.3.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Councilwoman Traci Park.

Mr. Amster reported that he went on a ride along with SLO Espin as well as a clean-up effort with PPTFH. They recognized the dry brush behind the Caltrans barrier along PCH. He can report that that has been cleared. Traci Park was at the American Legion celebrating African American Marines. Mr. Amster also observed Pickle Ball at the Rec Center. He reported that he is working on bringing together the stakeholder meeting for Potrero Canyon matters.

Rick McGeagh (PPBA Representative and Area 7 1st alternate) thanked Mr. Amster for addressing the dangerous pothole on Will Rogers Rd.

Dave Card (Chair Emeritus) informed Mr. Amster about the ongoing issue of use of the maintenance gate at the Riviera Country Club for member access. He suggested that if Mr. Amster is not aware of that matter, he should check in with Reza Akef (Area 8 Representative) and other Area reps to become familiar with the issue. Mr. Amster said he was familiar with the issue, has heard both perspectives and has spoken to residents.

8.5.4.   Skylar Payab, Westside Field Deputy for Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, gave the Board information and reported that they have been connecting with Sen. Allen’s office and Caltrans regarding the trail and bridge issues. ASM Irwin herself will be meeting with the head of Caltrans to discuss matters further.

8.5.5.   Rad Nowroozi, Field Representative, State Senator Ben Allen, SD24.  Not present.

8.5.6.   Allison Holdorff, Sr. Advisor to LAUSD Board member Nick Melvoin, reported that LAUSD is making tutoring available to all students and looking for mentors for students.  She is in contact with Dr. Magee and Tom Iannucci to address local Charter Complex issues.  They are working on traffic issues at Revere and air conditioning issues at Pali High. Pali Elementary has had a successful “jump for heart” event and will have an upcoming movie night. Marquez Elementary’s enrollment is growing and LAUSD is working with them to secure more teachers. LAUSD Bulletin, 88694, is an evacuation protocol document she is happy to share with the community.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.

8.6.1.   Lou Kamer, PPCC Transportation Advisor.  Lou reported on safety and efficiency in transportation and road adjustments. He has been in touch with ASM Irwin, Sen. Allen and Caltrans offices as well as LADOT to make sure safety is paramount as well as efficiency. Projects he is working on include the PCH Caltrans barricade with gaps where homeless people go behind the barricade for encampment. Campfires in the area have caused three outbreaks of wildfires. The responses to these fires are costly and the public safety repercussions are many. He has been working with government offices to maintain the gaps for the requisite access needed for maintenance, but also securing them for public safety.

Second issue is the traffic light on Entrada and PCH. He spoke to LADOT today (2/23) and they reported that they are working though the permit process for changes to the light at the intersection.

He is also working on crosswalks – Lou has asked LADOT to look at all crosswalks (especially near schools) to determine where they need to be re-striped or improved. More to come.

A discussion ensued about crosswalk safety near schools. Julie Silliman (PPCC Area 7 Representative) reported that a crosswalk at Entrada and Stassi Lane is disfavored by the community. Greg Heidt (PPCC Education Representative) reported that several lights on Temescal Canyon Rd. are out. Board members asked Michael Amster to address the outage. Board members impressed upon him that this was a critical matter that needs immediate attention. The Presiding Officer Jenny Li suggested a 311 report. Lou Kamer reported that he had already made a 311 call and would share the information with Mr. Amster.

8.6.2.   Chris Spitz (PPCC At-large Rep, WRAC Vice Chair and PPCC Rep to WRAC).  Chris reported that the WRAC Board met last week and she shared pictures and updates with WRAC Board members about GW Park at Potrero Canyon; she noted that several WRAC Board members knew George Wolfberg from his time as a member of WRAC.  ASM Irwin was a guest speaker and gave a report about evacuation issues and is working on possible legislation to amend SB9 to eliminate increased density in the VHFHSZ. LADWP gave a presentation to WRAC about a proposal by an environmental group to the Water Control Board to restrict LADWP’s water rights in the Mono Basin.  LADWP encourages people and councils to submit written comment, due on March 17th,  opposing the restriction of their water rights. We will hear more at the March 9th PPCC meeting.

9.   Reports from Committees. None [but see the Chair Emeritus report in item 8.2.2. above].

10.   Old Business.  None.

11.   New Business.

11.1.   Al Fresco Dining Ordinance.  Discussion Item Only: The Presiding Officer explained that while the City seeks to make permanent the Al Fresco dining arrangements which relaxed sidewalk dining rules and helped save restaurants through the pandemic, there are new regulations being proposed that many residents oppose as a result of safety issues and reduced parking. Chris Spitz explained that PPCC has asked the new joint Chamber to poll Palisades business members and see if they can help us determine how our businesses feel about the new ordinance.  There is a draft ordinance in the works with fees and regulations which have either been added or suspended in a way that either burdens restaurant owners or alarms communities which host the outdoor dining facilities.

The Presiding Officer suggested PPCC members read up on the ordinance in case the Board decides to take a position. Haldis Toppel encouraged people to help restaurants maintain outdoor dining, as it helps restaurants thrive.

Julie Silliman spoke about SM Canyon restaurants that have turned many parking spots, including handicap parking, into outdoor dining spaces. She knows people support Al Fresco dining but notes that restaurants take up sidewalks and parking spots that may impact community safety. She suggests that the City should survey more of the issues before passing an ordinance and really study the impact of outdoor dining on communities/neighborhoods.

Julie also noted that valet parking is an issue as parking attendants create chaos on small streets and while it is lively, it is also perilous. Fire is also an issue, as the structures on sidewalks are often made of wood, and could pose a danger. She suggests the city look more deeply into codifying Al-Fresco dining.

Dave Card and Beth Holden-Garland spoke in support of outdoor dining and suggested we ask our friends and neighbors to consider their thoughts and submit comment.

Chris Spitz reported that we may wish to learn more and take a position in the months to come (the current deadline to submit comment on the Planning staff report is 3/3/23, but there will be other opportunities for comment as the proposed ordinance goes through the process in the Planning Commission and City Council).

We/PPCC acting though the President and at-Large Area Rep, have asked the Chamber of Commerce (joint Malibu/Pacific Palisades) to see if they can learn, perhaps though polling, what our local restaurants and other businesses think.  This matter may be back before the board for additional discussion and possible motion.  See, for reference:

12.   Adjournment. The meeting was adjourned at 7:51pm.


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  The President called the meeting to order at 8:03p.m. and Nina Kidd read the PPCC Mission Statement.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum. The President called roll and certified that we have quorum:

Maryam Zar, Jenny Li, Randy Young, Beth Holden-Garland, Dave Card, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Bruce Schwartz, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Greg Heidt, Kimberly Bloom, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Rick McGeagh, Chris Spitz, Nina Kidd, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker.

Joanna Spak, Nancy Niles, Michael Edlen, LeeAnne Sanderson, Daphne Gronich, Sue Kohl, Harlan Hogue, Kevin Niles, Genevieve Bostik, Ryan Craig.

3.   Introduction of Attendees
Donna Arrechea, Director, MYLA 311 App. See her report at:

4.   Approval of Minutes:  The meeting minutes from February 23, 2023 were approved as distributed.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings:

The Agenda was considered as presented.

6.   Treasurer’s Report.   The Treasurer reported that our bank balance stands at $52.201.57.

7.   General Public Comment.  None.

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President announced that she had met with LA City Fire Brush Clearance unit and learned that they are beginning to send letters to all residents around the rim for brush clearance, they also sent letter to RAP and all city agencies, and expect them to also do their brush clearance. If they don’t, they’ll get cited like anyone else, and if they still don’t comply, LAFD will send a brush until out to clear and then invoice them. At present, there is brush clearance being done (by a private contractor, Waste Unlimited) at Potrero Canyon.  (See her report posted on the website)

8.1.2.   The President announced that the 2nd Meeting of the Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee has taken place and that committees for communication, signage and coastal access were being created. We also got more information from state and city offices, with Gabriella median on a call with the committee. See more details below.

8.1.3.   The President shared that two homeless individuals are using the Post office vestibule area to sleep. LAPD is aware and Congressman Sherman’s office has been alerted. LAPD Capt. Heredia suggests residents call these matters in to the 9-1-1 non-emergency line so that a radio call is generated and statistics are recorded.

8.1.4.   The President announced that unprecedented progress on Potrero is being made between the city and state for the required lateral trail that would provide coastal access from Potrero Canyon Park to the coast. The shortfall between the amount secured by Congressman Ted Lieu through the Omnibus bill and the current City estimate for the construction of the trail has been requested from the Mayor’s annual City budget. We have been asked to write in support of that request. The President asked for approval based on previous positions. The Board affirmed that she should write that letter. She thanked staff for Sen. Allen and Asm. Irwin (Rad Nowroozi and Syklar Payab) for getting so much done.

8.1.5.   The President reported that she had held a discussion with new CD11 Planning Deputy, Jeff Khau, following the last meeting. They discussed the following:

i    Out of scale building on streets within the coastal zone but not hillside – remedy planned,

ii   Fire access roads encumbered by private homeowners. Jeff Khau told the President that CD11 staff are working to unearth information about these encumbrances,

iii  Excavation and building sites that outlast reasonable time. Jeff Khau has pledged to reach out to Frank Lara of LADBS for some answers and will look to see if anything can be done with existing City Council motions to require completion bonds, etc. He will report back.

8.1.6.   CD11 assures us that the two Palisades locations that had been on the first rollout list of new shelters by Tranzito Vector are off the table. No new shelters are planned in the Palisades in the first year of roll out. While we await the meeting CD11 has offered to set between PPCC and Streets LA, we will join WRAC Councils asking for an audit, and may also want to bring our own motion asking for a carve out.

8.1.7.   Community Safety meeting set for Thursday, April 6th at 5:30 pm at the American Legion.  Main points of discussion shall be public safety including LAPD, Fire safety and evacuations, emergency preparedness, communication. Participants beyond LAPD and LAFD — TBD.

8.1.8.   First meeting of the joint PPCC/BCC committee to take place on 3/22. Possible areas of joint discussion:
a.  Cannabis Dispensaries
b.  Al fresco dining
c.   A drone fire safety program pilot for our hillside streets
d.   The street furniture and bus shelter matter

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus.

8.2.1.    Jenny Li – None.

8.2.2.   David Card – None.

8.2.3.   Beth Holden-Garland – None.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives.

8.3.1.   Kimberly Bloom, Area 5 Representative.
Reported that she has video of a prowler and wants to know if SLO Espin knows anything and can help her make a report.

8.3.2.   Murray Levy, Area One Representative.
Mr. Levy invited homeowners from Paseo Miramar to speak about how difficult it is for neighbors to deal with rogue developers. Lorraine Totino (resident) spoke. The President said she had spoken to Jeff Khau and he would speak with Frank Lara, LADBS Government and Community Relations Director, and bring his thoughts back to us.  She also suggested that PPCC discuss what we’d like to see the Council Office do to help the situation;  the Office will be happy to consider all remedies.  Ms. Totino stated that no matter how many times residents call, they are deferred to 3-1-1 and no one ever comes out. One time, residents stood in front of the developer and stopped them from cutting the toe out of the hillside.  Inspectors and police came, but they all said, we can’t help you, just call 3-1-1.  So, nothing happens. Another developer is trying to shore up the road to his property. The developer did not have a permit.  The developer cut trees and then went and pulled an over-the-counter permit after the fact. This was not ok. Paseo Miramar residents have met with Michael Amster of CD 11 since that incident and shared their concerns.

The President suggested that residents tell the Council Office about the illegal activity.

Mr. Levy suggested that PPCC press, as a Community Council, to figure out what people should be doing and ask who should community members contact and what are the consequences for rogue developers when they do not follow regulations? The President agreed.  The Treasurer Randy Young suggested that we have a hearing on this matter and urged that we do this alongside the Council Office.  Ms. Totino added that the neighbors have followed all the right instructions for people to call. They are told to call Tree Services when there is a tree at stake. But then they are sent back over to 3-1-1, and it seems to be an unending loop for getting nothing done. Mr. Levy affirmed. The LADBS website lists all complaints, but then just lists them as “Resolved” without anyone knowing how. The President said that she has sent the addresses to the Council Office and expects them to help the community reach those homeowners. The Vice Chair Jenny Li suggested we also reach out to the City Attorney’s office and/or ask our Neighborhood Prosecutor what can be done.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives.

8.4.1.   Barbara Kohn, Historical Society Alternate. Not present. [See flyer for announcement details about a hike on April 1 at Los Liones Park:]  Shirley Haggstrom (TCA Representative)  advised to RSVP at   There will be a historical presentation after the hike, led by PPCC Treasurer Randy Young and Ms. Haggstrom.

8.4.2.   Shirley Haggstrom, TCA, announced that on Sunday, March 19th, there will be a hike up to Chicken Ridge with an overview. Start at 8:45am with cars to Will Rogers State Park. Please sign up at  (you can drive yourself but there’s a fee for parking). No dogs – 2 hours – bring good shoes.

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives

8.5.1.   Brian Espin. LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades.
SLO Espin asked Kimberly Bloom (Area 5 Representative) to email him for help with an online report.  We’ve had a few pick pocket incidents in grocery stores. Please be mindful of your surroundings, and keep your purse closed.  March 19 is the LA Marathon. There have been some car break-ins at Los Liones, but he has been making additional rounds to try and nab them. He said he is aware of the Post Office matter. He has spoken to the Post Master.  If the community wishes to close the vestibule area, they should reach out to the Post Master.  The Beach Detail found an encampment at Temescal Canyon and asked the PPTFH volunteer corps to come clear it out. He commented this was nice work.

Courtney Macker (PPRA Representative) asked for SLO Espin to translate some of the acronyms of the police report (perhaps with a key).

Karen Ridgley asked what was happening with the rapid communication plan that was discussed earlier.  Officer Espin said discussions are being had and they are beginning to put systems in place so that notifications go out more efficiently, and not be reliant on one person being present. The President said there will be an April 6th Community Safety Meeting with many agencies present. She hopes LAPD will have a plan to announce then.

8.5.2.   Zac Gaidzik, (temporary) Deputy, County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, District 3.
Not present.

8.5.3.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Councilmember Traci Park.
Mr. Amster reported that Waste Unlimited is out at Potrero Canyon Park with irrigation and tree trimming.   A BOE landscape architect is also on site. He met with the Miramar Homeowners Association as well as some homeowners along the bluffs. He is working to recruit new members to the Design Review Board. He is also beginning the process of investigating the obstruction along the fire road between Enchanted Way and Lachman Lane.  The Temescal Canyon Road (TCR) re-pavement has been set back by rain delays. No time frame for completion yet. The President noted that this part of TCR had been repaved a few months ago and was “problematic” enough to have to be done again.

8.5.4.   Skylar Payab, Field Representative, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin.  Not present.

8.5.5.   Rad Nowroozi, Field Representative, State Senator Ben Allen, SD24.
Mr. Nowroozi reported that there is new legislation that may interest the community: SB571, involving wildfire evacuation planning in HR and the VHFSZ – if the bill passes, any community in those severity zones will have to plan and evaluate their wildfire evacuation program in a comprehensive way and submit it to the fire department. The President indicated that this will impact the Palisades in the future and we will keep an eye on it.  Mr. Nowroozi will report on other bills next time. Chris Spitz (At-large Representative) suggested that PPCC may want to take up the bill and support it. Mr. Nowroozi will report on other bills next time.

He also reported that his office is working with CM Park and ASM Irwin on Potrero Canyon issues with great strides being made, and to expect an update as soon as everyone is ready to make a report. They will bring all agencies to the PPCC for a report. Cindy Simon (Area 6 Representative) asked for a comprehensive report sooner rather than later.

8.5.6.   Taleen Keroughlian, Field Representative, Congressman Brad Sherman.  Not present.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.

8.6.1.   Lou Kamer, PPCC Transportation Advisor.

Reported that a big storm is coming so please be careful driving.  LADOT and Caltrans have been working on Chautauqua and PCH but it has passed the permitting process and work orders will be forthcoming to make those turns a little safer.

Once the storms are over we will see some progress on some of the plans we have made regarding safety and mobility in the Palisades.

8.6.2.   K.C. Soll, Emergency Preparedness.  Not called upon.

9.   Reports from Committees.  None.

10.   Old BusinessNone.

11.   New Business:

11.1.   Discussion and possible motion on a PPCC LUC presentation on the matter of legal out-of-scale building in Palisades non-hillsides residential areas that are in the coastal zone but not regulated by the Baseline Mansionization Ordinance [see LUC proposal at:]:  tabled until further information is made available from the Council Office (a preliminary discussion with Jeff Khau, CD11 Planning Deputy, was already had by the PPCC President and the LUC Chair), and until the community has had a chance to hear from the LUC in a separate community meeting focused on this issue.

11.2.   Clint Kautsky, Civil Engineer with DWP, Water Operations Department, gave presentation regarding DWP access to the Mono Basin water resource. See the presentation at:  This. access is being proposed to be restricted by a Mono Lake environment committee, which has maintained to the California Water Resources Control Board that there is a water emergency and DWP access must be restrained. LADWP would like Los Angeles communities to understand the significant impact of this change on LA. Mr. Kautsky asked PPCC to support LADWP’s right to continue to retain their water rights to the Mono Basin. (Comments to be submitted to

Following discussion, a vote was taken and the Board passed the following motion:

“Los Angeles residents have a human right to safe, clean, affordable and reliable water. Water from the Los Angeles Aqueduct is the City’s most cost-effective water supply and is the backbone of the City’s water system. Revoking LADWP’s ability to utilize the Mono Basin water rights belonging to Angelenos will jeopardize our community’s access to water and further burden low-income Los Angeles ratepayers.

“The cost of sustainability in Los Angeles has long fallen on the backs of ratepayers – a cost we have taken in stride because it has meant creating a more water-resilient future for our families. However, no amount of conservation will allow our city to be fully independent of imported water supplies and losing supplies from the LA Aqueduct will only force us to receive water elsewhere. In fact, purchasing water to replace historic LA Aqueduct supplies from the Mono Basin could cost ratepayers up to $44 million. Many in our community are already struggling to meet their basic needs: with as many as 50% of Los Angeles residents living in disadvantaged communitieswe cannot afford to shoulder an additional expense nor risk reliable access to clean water from our taps.”

Motion read by the President seconded by Richard Blumenberg, passed by a 2/3 majority of  Board  members voting.

11.3.   The Board passed a motion recommended by WRAC, to request an audit of the City’s STAP  program and the attendant contract with Tranzito Vector for a new roll-out of citywide bus shelters. (Council File No. 20-1536-S4):

“PPCC, a member of the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils, is concerned about the current status and management of the STAP program under the new contractor Tranzito-Vector and requests an audit of the program by the City Controller and Chief Administration Officer’s (CAO) office of the revenues and expenditures for this new STAP program.”

Motion made by Chris Spitz (WRAC Vice Chair, PPCC Representative to WRAC and At-large Representative); second by Nina Kidd; passed unanimously after discussion.

12.   Adjournment – The meeting was adjourned at 8:21pm.


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission. The meeting was called to order at 6:02 PM. Karen Ridgley read the Community Council Mission.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.

The President called roll and certified a quorum.

Voting members present: Maryam Zar, Jenny Li, Randy Young, Beth Holden-Garland, Dave Card, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Bruce Schwartz (announced by PRIDE as their Alternate as they serve as the sole member of the Business/Commerce category), Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Sue Kohl, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Reza Akef, Chris Spitz, Nina Kidd, Greg Heidt, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Jessica Rogers.

Non-voting members present: Joanna Spak, Michael Edlen, Leeanne Sanderson, Daphne Gronich, Quentin Flemming, Alisa Wolfson, Ryan Craig.

3.   Introduction of attendees

Brian Hale, LADOT Chief of Parking Enforcement and Tim Fremaux, Sr. Transportation Engineer, LADOT were present and were introduced by PPCC Transportation Advisor, Lou Kamer, to give a presentation.

Mr. Hale reported that there are 600 traffic officers and even more supervisors; they are operating 24/7 supporting LAPD and LAFD. They respond to requests for traffic control assistance, signal outages, largescale public events and emergency management responses. They are deployed from five area offices and patrol the city throughout the day issuing parking violations and responding to continuous complaints.  They generate 1.2 million citations that yields $115M to the City’s General Fund, which helps fund police, fire and other public safety programs. They also service over 4,000 special events throughout the city – including at Dodger Stadium, Hollywood Bowl, The Greek Theatre, and the LA Marathon. They also address abandoned vehicles (1-800-abandon), and have helped recover more than 4,000 stolen vehicles across the City, last year. They are an agency that helps maintain public safety and accountability to motorists.

Vehicle dwellings are an ongoing issue. The Mayor’s emergency declaration on homelessness which focuses on addressing encampments (tents and other structures on City streets) is not as deliberate with respect to vehicle dwellings, but LADOT still addresses them. These vehicles are occupied so it’s hard to simply vacate or displace them. Brian Hale drafted a report for LA City Council last year where he outlined a process by which LADOT can begin to remove these vehicles, and that begins with outreach and engagement. LADOT can then initiate enforcement activity. They don’t have the space to store the vehicles – official police garages don’t have space on their lots to store these vehicles — so one of the things city departments are doing is identifying other public lots that can be used to store vehicles used for vehicular dwellings.

Tim Fremaux, Sr Transportation Engineer, oversees 3 of 6 offices. Other groups do things within the City on transportation. The District Office’s primary service is constituent services – anything traffic or transportation-related matters: light signals, curb markings, pavement markings and lane lines, crosswalks, signs and all the various features within the roadway that help guide and manage the flow of traffic. There are 8,000-10,000 service requests that come from residents as well as elected offices. My LADOT was being used but is being disabled. New system will be 311-based and will allow the public to go through the 311 system online to reach a tree of menus having to do with DOT, and the request will be submitted to LADOT. Transition state. At present, you can work through the Council Office or directly with LADOT to make requests.

The W. Channel and Chautauqua intersection has finally received the Caltrans permit for DOT to get ready to do the work of improving that intersection. There will be a small buffer between the left-to-Channel Road-lane and the other left turn to go to PCH. The barrier will help emphasize the separation of the movements. Hoping compliance will be better – data will be collected.

The other modification will be on PCH going towards Malibu. The rightmost lane will be the only lane going to Chautauqua or Channel. The other two lanes will be PCH only. Focus on safety.

The Chair announced that Temescal Canyon Rd. will soon be finished repaving.

Kimberly Bloom [Area 5 Representative] asked about speed bumps. Mr. Fremaux said there is a group at DOT which addresses only speed bumps. That group has been reactivated. (LADOT Speedhumps) When the cycle is open, the community can submit an application which is evaluated and then affirmed (only two segments per Council District). Very competitive.  The neighborhood must make a request and have a form signed by a majority of people on the impacted street, asking for the bumps. Mr. Fremaux suggested other solutions including bollards and other remedies.

Alan Goldsmith (PPCC Business Advisor) asked about bike lane statistics in terms of reduced accidents. Mr. Fremaux replied that research has been done on levels of intervention to protect bike lanes. Typically crashes involving bikes do go down. There is definitely a correlation.

Reza Akef (Area 8 Representative) noted that the left turn onto Sunset from Allenford intersection needs some attention. Mr. Fremaux pledged to investigate it.  Reza Akef then asked about traffic impact mitigation at the Chautauqua intersection when work begins. Mr. Fremaux responded that any road closure will be very brief, and not during the peak traffic hours. He noted that the existing bollard/cones are damaged and may need repair.

David Card (Chair Emeritus) thanked Mr. Kamer and Mr. Fremaux and the City for working on the Chautauqua intersection. Also noted the paint lines on Temescal and asked for it to be done correctly this time.

Jenny Li (Vice-President) asked if the PCH right-hand turn lane will have an arrow with the signal because there will be twice as many people turning from one lane as there have previously been. People who could turn onto Channel on a red light will now have to wait for people turning on Chautauqua when the light is green. People may start cutting through the gas station. Mr. Fremaux said there will be no changes to the signal, but outcomes and unintended consequences will be monitored.

Karen Ridgley (Area 3 Representative) mentioned Asilomar View Park parking enforcement. Mr. Hale asked to be informed with an address and he will work to address the issues.

4.   Approval of Minutes: The minutes of the February 23, 2023, were approved as distributed.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings:

The Agenda was considered as presented.

6.   Treasurer’s Report.  The Treasurer reported that the PPCC bank balance is $52,591.67 with no transactions to report.

7.   General Public Comment.  None.

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President announced that LAFD Brush Clearance inspector has pledged that letters for brush clearance will be sent soon, and monitoring is underway. Violators (including parks) will be notified to clear brush, and if they fail to do so, LAFD will send a contractor to do the work and bill them. We have been informed that Potrero Canyon brush clearance is being done by a contractor named Waste Unlimited.

8.1.2.   The President announced that she will be appointing a Nominating Committee at our next meeting.

8.1.3.   The President said she wanted to have a board-wide conversation about the Honorary Mayor Tradition which has historically rested with the Chamber of Commerce. PPCC’s 50th Anniversary is coming up and she’d like to celebrate by taking on the Hon. Mayor tradition, given that the joint Malibu Chamber is not in a position to adopt that tradition, and the Hon. Mayor mantle is well placed at PPCC.  She invited discussion. Board members indicated that the new joint Malibu/Palisades Chamber is getting traction with the local business community. Sue Kohl (Area Five 1st Alternate) announced that each new business in the Palisades is celebrated with a ribbon cutting, networking events are often scheduled and the PaliBu chamber is very interested in retaining the Hon. Mayor tradition. Members also expressed a volition to keep the Honorary Mayoral tradition in the Palisades and saw it as a uniquely Palisadian tradition that we may not wish to share with Malibu. The President explained that she hopes the Malibu/Palisades Chamber gains strength and even takes its place on our board, but that the discussion of the Honorary Mayor was a separate issue worth further conversation. She pledged to reach out to the new joint chamber leadership and invite them to weigh in on the issue. Sue Kohl reiterated that the PaliBu chamber would like to retain and revive the tradition.

8.1.4.   The President reiterated that progress between city and state agencies for the construction of the lateral trail and feasibility of the bridge continues to bring the community closer to coastal access for Potrero Canyon Park. The funding shortfall for the lateral trail has been requested from the Mayor’s city budget, and PPCC wrote a letter in support which can be found online. See our letter.

8.1.5.   The President updated the board that discussions continue with Jeff Khau, Planning Director at CD11, and the issue of out-of-scale building in the Palisades (LUC matter) continues to be discussed. More to come. She also noted that Jeff is reaching out to Frank Lara to bring back feedback regarding extended excavation and building times for projects that seem never to end, and residents have nowhere to turn for accountability.

8.1.6.   The President informed the board that per the last meeting consensus, a letter in support of a Palisades Dog Park has been sent. See here.

8.1.7.   The President announced the upcoming Community Safety meeting set for Thursday, April 6th at 5:30 pm at the American Legion. There will also be a ZOOM component.

Main points of discussion shall be public safety including LAPD, fire safety and evacuations, emergency preparedness, communication. Participants beyond LAPD and LAFD will be joining us. She shared the event flyer [see:].

8.1.8.   The President announced that the first meeting of the joint PPCC/BCC committee will take place on 3/28. Shared priorities for discussion will be cannabis dispensaries, VHFHSZs and their protection as well as bus shelters and the City’s rollout of new furniture.

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus

8.2.1.  Jenny Li (Vice-President) – reported that the PCOC has formed a communication committee (Li, Wittcoff, Simon, Spitz and Zar) to post ongoing information about Potrero Canyon and the efforts of the committee in resolving issues and community concerns surrounding George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon. The posts will be penned by the committee and posted to a Potrero tab that has been created on the PPCC website (, under a series of subheadings that the committee has developed for ease of navigation. Check back often for updates.

There is also a new email with which to communicate with the PCOC. That email is (the old gmail will be phased out in time).

The President reiterated all the work that is being done, mentioned progress on the lateral trail, and cited the letter sent to support remaining funding for the trail, as well as that sent to CD11 in support of the dog park (so dogs are not taken off leash at Potrero Canyon Park). She noted that the letter has been acknowledged and a conversation has since ensued with Leslie Campbell who leads the community dog park effort.

8.2.2.  David Card (Chair Emeritus) –  Thanked everyone for their deliberations with respect to new organizational members.

8.2.3.   Beth Holden-Garland [Secretary] – None.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives

8.3.1.   Murray Levy, Area One Representative, brought up the enduring issue of excavations and non-compliant building projects in Area One. The President announced that Jeff Khau has pledged to reach out to Frank Lara and either bring us his feedback regarding the overly-long excavation durations and the building projects that seem never ending in Area One (and beyond), or invite him to attend an upcoming meeting. The issue has not been forgotten and the President will agendize the matter for motion if the City fails to give meaningful feedback.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives

8.4.1.   Nina Kidd (Friends of the Library) announced that the PPTFH is reorganizing and urged people to attend the Community Safety Town Hall to hear more. The President announced that Sharon Kilbride will be a panelist at the Town Hall Meeting and has informed the President that she will take part in discussions of safety, as related to the work of PPTFH, and speak briefly about the plans to reorganize PPTFH.

8.4.2.    Shirley Haggstrom (TCA) announced that the Historical Society invites you to join them for a hike at Los Liones Canyon on Saturday April 1st. Come to the amphitheater and sign in at 8:45am. A moderate-level hike will be followed by a program and light refreshments in the amphitheater highlighting the impact of the work done to restore/preserve the canyon.
She further announced that TCA has more members than was previously stated in the meeting (12 members mentioned), and that their members extend well beyond the immediate community, even as far as members from abroad.

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives

8.5.1.   Brian Espin. LAPD Senior Lead Officer for Pacific Palisades.
SLO Espin reported that burglaries are up by five from last year at this time. Typical Modus Operandi: people go to the side or rear of the house to break a window and get in. Car break-ins are still happening and he asks that people not leave keys in the car or valuables visible. Crime report has been released. The President noted that the most recent crime report notated the description of all acronyms, as asked.

8.5.2.   Zac Gaidzik, (temporary) Deputy, County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, District 3
Zac reported that Supervisor Horvath has authored a motion for LACBOS to look at how LA County Government is modeled and structured, allowing for a bigger board as well as public funded campaigns or matching finds. She has met with Mayor Karen Bass and adopted implementation actions to accelerate change around addressing encampments, mental health and substance abuse as well as housing. The LA County Supervisors approved $609.7M for the LA County Homelessness Initiative, along with extending eviction protections to the end of March. Sup. Horvath also authored a motion for $45M in funds to be available soon to small renters and landlords to offer sone relief. Also has embraced raising the pride flag over county offices during the month of June in recognition of LGBTQ rights and inclusion in the month of pride. Sup Horvath has also asked the FCC to engage local governments and residents in the development of accessible wireless infrastructure. This Sunday, Sup. Horvath will be celebrating her first 100 days in office! LA County will be reviewing grant requests for community projects. To learn more, visit

8.5.3.   Michael Amster, CD11 Field Deputy, Councilwoman Traci Park — Did not speak.

8.5.4.   Skylar Payab, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, Deputy — Not present.

8.5.5.   Rad Nowroozi, State Senator Ben Allen, SD24.
Mr. Nowroozi presented information about SB 571 and further announced that Maryam Zar was honored as the 2023 Woman of the Year (WOTY) for the Senate District by Sen. Ben Allen. She was chosen for her leadership and advocacy in Los Angeles, but also for the work she does abroad, empowering women. This year, in particular, she has been active in supporting the Woman Life Freedom movement emerging from Iran where protesters inspired by women have taken to the streets demanding basic freedoms and civil rights. Mr. Nowroozi announced that Ms. Zar was recognized for her selection as WOTY on the Senate floor on Monday, March 20th, alongside other WOTYs, which included Mayor Karen Bass. Mr. Nowroozi informed the board that in keeping with her advocacy, Ms. Zar was up in Sacramento again earlier on the day of the current meeting to support and witness the passage of Senate Concurrent Resolution 6 (SCR6), which was a historic expression of support on the part of the CA State Senate for the pro-freedom protesters in Iran.

The President thanked Sen. Ben Allen and Mr. Nowroozi as well as the entire office of Sen. Allen for the accolade and the recognition. She explained that Iran is the place of her birth, and said she’d been in Sacramento for the day to watch the passage of a Concurrent Resolution she had helped draft and was proud to be able to do the work she does, both at home and abroad.

8.5.6.   Taleen Keroughlian, Congressman Brad Sherman — Not present.

8.5.7.   Allison Holdorff-Polhill, AUSD Board member, Nick Melvoin, Sr. Advisor – Not present.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives [None].

9.   Reports from Committees.

9.1.   The Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee (PCOC). [See Item 8.2.1 above.]

10.   Old Business – None.

11.   New Business.

11.1.  Discussion and vote — addition of two new organizations to the PPCC Board.

After presentations of documents submitted by the applicants for inclusion in the PPCC Board roster as rotational members of the organizational categories that are part of the PPCC Board, per Appendix A of the Bylaws, and discussion, the board voted on a motion by the Executive Committee to allow the Palisades Forestry Committee (PFC) and the Palisades Americana Parade Association (PAPA) onto the board as rotational members; motion passed by a vote of more than 2/3 of the entire board membership [see below].  Two distributions of Bylaws amendments will be forthcoming in order for the board to vote on adding the two new organizations into their respective rotational categories on Appendix A to the Bylaws.

[See documents submitted by PFC and PAPA in support of inclusion on the PPCC Board Roster:;;;]

The two new organizations recommended by the EC were affirmed for board inclusion as follows:

11.1.1.   PFC – 17 in favor, one opposed

11.1.2.   PAPA – 16 in favor, one opposed, one abstaining

The President announced that she will now refer the matter to the Bylaws Committee, which will determine how best to position them in our rotational categories, and will bring their recommendations to our board for two distributions (culminating in a bylaws amendment) in the month of April. The President notes that David Card, PFC President and Bylaws Committee Chair, will recuse himself from bylaws committee discussions having to do with PFC. Andrew Wolfberg, Committee Vice Chair, will preside over those discussions.

11.2.  Discussion and possible Motion.

11.2.1.  WRAC motion for 100% RSO replacement units was tabled, pending more information and    LUC review.

11.2.2.   SB571 (Allen).  Senate bill calling for evacuation plans in conjunction with new development in VHFHSZs – After presentation by Sen. Allen’s Legislative staff member, Dylan Elliot, and discussion, the board tabled this motion pending the outcome of more amendments from the Senate Governance and Finance Committee and expected developments from the Senator’s office.  Mr. Elliot and Mr. Nowroozi from Sen. Allen’s office will keep the board updated and bring us the final language of the bill in a timely fashion for our consideration and support. See more information at:

12.   Adjournment — The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 pm.


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.  The meeting was called to order at 6:01pm. The PPCC mission was read by Sue Kohl.  See PPCC Bylaws:   

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
Voting members present: Maryam Zar, Jenny Li, Beth Holden-Garland, Randy Young, David Card, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Haldis Toppel, Karen Ridgley, Sue Kohl, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Eric Dugdale, Richard Blumenberg, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker. 

Non-voting members present: Cindi Young, Joanna Spak, Michael Edlen, Daphne Gronich, Andrew Wolfberg, Mary Schultz, Barbara Kohn, Ryan Craig. 

3.   Introduction of attendees – none. 

4.   Approval of Minutes:  March 23, 2023, were approved as distributed.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings: The agenda was considered as distributed. 

6.   Treasurer’s Report.  Randy Young was unable to connect audio, though several attempts were made. The President announced that the Treasurer paid several bills this month, including the renewal of our insurance premium for $1,700 as well as bills to Miracle Data for technology support and the electronic election platform (using Zoho). She said she believes we need to speak as an organization about raising money, not because we need it but because she does not like to see the balance go down, and without some strategy for fundraising, we will not be able to replenish the costs associated with our operating expenses. She noted that the 50th anniversary of PPCC is this year and she suggested (referring to some of Beth Holden-Garland’s suggestions) that we work toward highlighting our work at this moment, and craft a PR campaign around our work. Sue Kohl [Area Five Alternate] suggested a Farmers Market presence. The President and the At-Large Rep [Chris Spitz] noted that PPCC did have a table and a presence at the Sunday Farmers Market, but it was difficult to get people to volunteer to staff the table. She also noted that the Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee (PCOC) also discussed PR and a strategy by which to inform the community about the work we/they do on behalf of the community. Karen Ridgley [Area Four Representative] also noted that people are not sufficiently aware of our work. She suggested posters in café or shop windows informing people of our meetings and our work. She suggested we need an area wide communication system. She said she has information she receives as Area Rep and doesn’t have a tool with which to inform her constituents. The President suggested a community-wide app, which might help inform people by way of new technology. 

Chris Spitz [At-large Representative] reminded everyone that we have long attempted to reach out by email to inform people and get more social media traction. She suggested we ask for “donations” in the newsletter or habitually, as we have in the past. Jenny Li [Vice-Chair] agreed and asked to set up a monthly or recurring payment option. 

Cindy Simon [Area Six Representative] said we need to be clear about “why” we want to fundraise – what is the point and how will it be used. She also wanted to know how much traffic comes to our website. The President said she can get analytics from the website (as well as the newsletter). 

The President suggested we come up with a narrative as to what we do as a CC and all the reasons we are a valuable organization to which donations are important. People may donate simply to sustain our operating expenses, and/or to take action (as was the case with the opposition to Bonin’s efforts to bring homelessness to beach parking areas) or to support our work preserving all that we value about the Palisades.  

Diana Danielle [Area Two 2nd Alternate], who is a publicist, suggested the Farmers Market would be a good neighborly personal touch, but we can also harness the power of social media and the press. She suggested we put more stories/articles in the local papers. The President reminded everyone that we have had a Facebook page for about 7 years (she set it up) and that we now have Instagram (Beth Holden-Garland). We had a strategy to build our audience, but we need new ideas and she’d like to set up an “Outreach Committee.” She said we get good coverage from the papers and media, and our social media is a reliable place to be informed about our work. Diana also suggested member highlights. She suggested more website content, more social media content and outreach.  

Beth Holden-Garland [Secretary] talked about reconceptualizing our logo and updating our general outreach image. We need to reach out to people more often and ask people to pay into our organization almost like association dues, because we have a track record of delivering for the community. 

Some discussion was had about an NC versus a CC, and the President noted that eight years ago we agendized this matter and had presentations and discussions. The board, at the time, agreed to remain a CC and noted all the benefits (including independence). Chris Spitz also reviewed that discussion and noted all the reasons why being a CC is important (including retaining the ability to speak directly to state lawmakers, which NCs are precluded from doing). The President also noted that city funding which is supposed to flow to NCs does not always flow (in her experience as former Chair of the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils (WRAC) which Chris Spitz now Vice-Chairs. Sue Kohl recalled that discussion and reminded everyone that there is real value in the work we do. She urged that everyone on the PPCC donate and be reminded to do so.  

Mary Schultz shared the Pacific Palisades Garden Club’s (PPGC) challenges with outreach and said she’d be happy to join the Outreach Committee. Karen Ridgley suggested we work though PTAs. The President invited Alisa Wolfson and Daphne Gronich to speak about this, but she noted that, while parent groups do a great deal of outreach to raise money, they are limited in the messaging that they are able to push out on behalf of the community. Alisa Wolfson, the Education Alternate, noted that unless it pertains specifically to the school, information is hard to put in their communication, but some community news can probably be done in that way.  

Cindy Kirven, co-President of the Village Green, announced that at their quarterly board meeting they resolved to extend an invitation to the PPCC to celebrate alongside them in August for a program that includes a history of the Palisades, art, awareness raising, and a general celebration of the “Sweet and the Serious.” The President thanked Cindy and the Village Green board and welcomed the opportunity to work together. 

The President said she would form an Outreach Committee to work on both fundraising as well as the 50th anniversary. Julie Silliman informed the board that Rustic Canyon will also be celebrating their 100th anniversary and the Pacific Palisades Historical Society is celebrating 50 years. The President suggested we might use a survey platform (perhaps Zoho) to see what the Community would like to do by way of a joint community celebration and pledged to reach out to members to form an Outreach Committee.   

7.   General Public Comment none.   

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.  

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.  All deferred.

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus. 

8.2.1.   Jenny Li [Vice-Chair] – none.

8.2.2.   David Card [Chair Emeritus] – none.

8.2.3.   Beth Holden-Garland [Secretary]. Reminded everyone to visit our social media on Instagram and Facebook and shared an idea about posting emergency preparedness resources in various posts, at different intervals, on our social media. 

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives. 

8.3.1.   Karen Ridgley, Area Four Representative, reported that the City finally cleared 17.6 tons of illegally dumped wood from Temescal Canyon Roadside this week after she went beyond 311 and called Luis Moreno, Supervisor of Sanitation, directly. Cindy Kirven showed video and pictures she had taken which displays company names and license plates of the violators. The information was sent to SLO Espin, and the board said they hoped this would make a difference. The President said she would share it with the Council Office for action. She also said community outreach and a community awareness campaign might help inform people not to dump or take the wood. 

8.3.2.   Steve Cron, Area Two Representative, announced that the CA Coastal Commission had a hearing about the trailhead restroom facilities in the Highlands. This has been a long-standing issue for the Palisades, and the Community Council has taken a position on the matter, asking for City and State agencies to take control of the rest area and manage it as a public resource. Steve said he and Shirley Haggstrom (representing TCA, the oldest environmental organization in the Palisades) both spoke at the meeting, noting the unkempt state of the bathrooms and facilities at the trailhead and the need for the Coastal Commission to act in defense of public safety. The result of the hearing was a Consent Agreement, that was entered into with the company that owns the facility to transfer title to the City of LA. The City of LA has been tasked to find a nonprofit entity to take over the management of that bathroom and transform it to a hygienic set of facilities at the trailhead.  “Today was a fantastic conclusion to this saga.” The President also acknowledged the role of the TCA in this process, and Shirley Haggstrom, TCA rep, noted their ongoing support of this outcome. 

8.3.3.   Murray Levy, Area One Representative, reported that lack of traffic and parking rules enforcement on PCH led to a deadly accident this weekend. In addition, he notified the board of a planned large-scale excavation and development in Area 1, with a hearing planned for April 19th. See new business item below.  

8.3.4.   Cindy Simon, Area Six Representative, reported her findings regarding Potrero Canyon, including slope slippage repairs that she has identified, graffiti clean-up, the maintenance of the self-cleaning bathrooms, the importance of weeding (which the PCOC is attempting to monitor) and the need to keep dogs on a leash. The President asked Cindy to provide regular updates about what she sees on her daily walks in the canyon, her endless efforts to improve the park, and her talks with both City engineers/workers and residents who are in the park, in order to monitor improvements and repairs, and use and enjoyment, as the Park evolves.  Cindy informed the board that people seem to be enjoying the park. Dogs off leash continues to be an issue (particularly on the grassy lawn) and the President said again that community outreach and an informational campaign may benefit Potrero Canyon Park.  Dave Card [Chair Emeritus] also thanked Cindy Simon, and suggested that the tiered erosion remedy the city has undertaken (per photos shown by Cindy Simon), will help with down-slope water drainage and help secure the hillside. He also suggested that the community might wish to write to the Council Office in support of a Palisades Dog Park, in order to help curb dogs off leash at Potrero Canyon Park.   

8.3.5.   Julie Silliman, Area Seven Representative. SM Canyon Association in-person annual meeting with Traci Park and Randy Young on May 9th, from 7 – 9pm. 

Dave Card informed the board that Rustic Canyon is celebrating its 100th anniversary in May (opening the time capsule) and again in October. And Rustic Canyon will have a clean-up on April 22, from 11am to 3pm. 

The President noted that this represented yet another element of a huge community celebration and asked Julie, Dave and Cindy Kirven to come together to plan a big community celebration, in conjunction with her and other organizations. 

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives 

8.4.1.   Ryan Craig, Resilient Palisades, announced an Earth Day Celebration on Sunday, April 13th, from 8am to noon, at The Village Green. It will be a morning of fun and education of all things eco-friendly. There will be vegan food, info on native plants, gas leaf blowers and give away of kitchen pails for composting. He asked all to join in and celebrate Earth Day. 

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives  

8.5.1.   Jose Bermudez, LAPD Pacific Palisades Beach Detail officer, announced that LAPD has implemented foot beats at Potrero Canyon. They have noticed many dogs off leash and are being challenged with enforcement. He said they have been verbally warning people but will begin to cite for the violation, because it is unsafe. 

He noted the new information that has been made available surrounding the illegal dumping at Temescal Canyon Road will help LAPD issue citations. Also asked Palisadians to warn or inform their own brush clearance contractors not to drop any wood in the Palisades. He said there is a cost to dumping elsewhere so perhaps companies either don’t know or are taking advantage of this unmonitored dumping site, but communication and awareness can help. The President noted that here again, community awareness and a community interface will be very helpful.  

Crime report:  There was a robbery with a firearm. The Robbery/Homicide detectives have taken over the investigation. As of now, there is no threat to the location, but investigation is ongoing. Officer Bermudez reviewed more of the weekly crime report and reported that another burglary suspect was arrested and charged with a hate crime. This will now be a felony crime.  

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives – none. 

9.   Reports from Committees.  

9.1.   The Potrero Canyon Oversight Committee (PCOC). Jenny Li reported that work on communication continues to be done and updates can be seen on the tab on the website. She thanked Chris Spitz for her efforts ensuring updates are drafted and posted. 

10.    Old Business – none. 

11.   New Business:  

11.1.   Discussion & Vote [Bylaws Amendments].
Bylaws Committee Vice-Chair, Andrew Wolfberg, presented the first distribution of the Bylaws Committee proposed amendments to PPCC Bylaws Appendix, adding Palisades Forestry Committee (PFC) and Palisades Americanism Parade Association (PAPA) to our organizational rotations.  He explained that Committee members Andy Frew and David Card recused themselves from Bylaws Committee deliberations because each is a member of one of the organizations at issue for this proposed amendment. He further explained that the President had affirmed that Palisades Beautiful no longer satisfied the requisite organizational structure to remain in Appendix A and would therefore be removed upon admission of the PAPA and PFC to the Service Clubs and Culture & Aesthetics categories, respectively. This would create two categories that each have four rotating organizational members, as reflected in Appendix A. Andrew explained that a 2/3rds majority vote is required to pass any amendment to the Bylaws, including this vote to amend Appendix A.  

The Bylaws Committee motion and vote for Board adoption of amendments will take place during the second distribution of the proposed amendments, on April 27th, 2022.  The following documents were distributed concurrently with the meeting agenda, and posted to our website alongside email notification to all board members:   

1)  Committee Report: (and see below – Attachment).

2)  Amendments “Redline”:  (The President noted the typographic error in Palisades Americanism Parade Association.) 

3)  Amendments “Clean”:  (The President noted the typographic error in Palisades Americanism Parade Association.)  

The President reiterated that she had reached out to Palisades Beautiful and informed them that she would be talking them out of Appendix A, but would welcome them – or any Palisades organization – back with an application to join our board at any time. 

11.2.  Discussion and Possible Motion [Area One Development]. 

Area One Primary Rep, Murray Levy, and Alternate, Cindi Young, reported that the residents of the area are being impacted by a massive development that was approved at a Planning Commission meeting last September. The HOA has appealed this ruling and a hearing is set for Wednesday, April 19th. The location of the proposed development is on the site of a massive landslide.  Murray and Cindi cite large scale excavation that will block roadways and entirely isolate people in the neighborhood. The two Representatives ask the PPCC to support their request for an EIR and urge the City to be mindful of the narrow hillside streets that will be encumbered by the massive scale of excavation and construction. This is the main artery in and out of the entire neighborhood of Castellammare. They also cite the unsafe conditions and the landslide characteristics of the hillside location for the development, and urge the City to support an Environmental Impact Report (EIR).  Cindy informed the board that there is currently only an MND on file, and the city has not required more. She also described that there will be a retaining wall constructed next to the bulkhead, and that this will jeopardize the integrity of and access to the bulkhead and pose a threat to the safety of the entire community. She notes that they are not against development, but expect the City to ensure that it is done responsibly. 

Murray noted the “insanity” of building large houses on an active landslide. 

The President noted that PPCC does not generally take positions on private building projects, but we do ask all developers/builders and the city to adhere to all regulations and ordinances in place and to scrupulously enforce them, making sure that any excavation is done in a way that protects the streets and the public right of way, as well as the integrity of access routes to and from communities.  

She also noted that the protection of hillside streets in the VHFHSZs is a priority not just for PPCC but for the Council Office, as she has learned in conversations with Jeff Khau, the new Planning Deputy at CD11.  These are narrow hillside streets that are easily encumbered, which impacts public safety from the standpoint of emergency vehicle access as well as evacuation in the event of a fire – a threat that lingers over the entire Palisades, which sits within a VHFHSZ.   

The PPCC unanimously approved the motion proposed by Murray Levy, Area One Primary Rep, and seconded by Chris Spitz and Barbara Kohn concurrently. Barbara Kohn, Historical Society Alternate and Area One resident, cited geological studies indicating the danger of building in this landslide area. She urged members to drive up to the area and take a look at the site as well as the conditions surrounding the site. She urged that all members support the motion. Shirley Haggstrom [TCA] also spoke in support of the motion and said she was appalled that anyone might consider building anything in that section of Tramonto, which would imperil hundreds of homes. Haldis Toppel [Area 3 Representative) also spoke in support of the motion. 

Daphne Gronich [Area Four 2nd Alternate] suggested that the community be mobilized to attend the meeting (even virtually) and speak in opposition (compared it to the Marquette matter when dozens of community members showed up to the hearing). She further suggested that an EIR should be required for this project, based on her past experience with a project on Marquette Street (which this Council took-up while Zar was Chair in 2017 and Councilmember Bonin represented CD11).   

The President proposed a friendly amendment to require an EIR. Barbara Kohn and Murray Levy spoke in favor of demanding an EIR.  The amendment was made by Steve Cron and seconded by Shirley Haggstrom. The board unanimously approved the friendly amendment, and the language was added to the proposed motion.   

Motion passed unanimously:
“In light of the huge excavation and development project anticipated on the hillside street of Tramonto, on the site of landslides with a possible impact on public safety with small hillside roads blocked for extended periods of time, and perhaps even lanes of PCH,  PPCC requests an EIR for this project and urges the Hearing Officer to take all necessary steps to protect these two public roads from damage caused by excavation, and that time limits be enforced by LADBS.”  

12.   Adjournment – the meeting was adjourned at 8:15pm. 

[Attachment — Item 11.1:]

Report of PPCC Bylaws Committee – April 7, 2023

Committee members: Andrew Wolfberg, Haldis Toppel, Randy Young, and Maryam Zar (ex officio). David Card and Andy Frew recused themselves due to conflicts as board members of PFC and PAPA, respectively.

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, most recently in September 2022.

The Bylaws include several appendices, including Appendix A – Organizations Eligible to Send Representatives. Appendix A was last revised in September 2022.

Appendix A must be updated to reflect the addition of the Palisades Forestry Committee (PFC) and Palisades Americanism Parade Association (PAPA). Further, it has been expressed by the Board Chair that Palisades Beautiful is no longer qualified, per our certification process, to participate in PPCC as an active Palisades-based organization.

Bylaws Committee members David Card and Andy Frew recused themselves from discussions regarding the placement of PFC and PAPA due to their positions as board members with PFC (David Card) and PAPA (Andy Frew).

The Bylaws Committee recommends the following changes to Appendix A, and accordingly proposes that the PPCC Board adopt the amendments to Appendix A summarized below:

  • Add Palisades Forestry Committee to Culture and Aesthetics
  • Add Palisades Americanism Parade Association to Service Clubs
  • Remove Palisades Beautiful from Culture and AestheticsThese changes will create two categories of four organizations rotating in the category of Culture and Aesthetics as well as Service Clubs.

The Bylaws Committee moves that the recommended amendments be adopted by the Board. Voting will take place after discussion at the Board meeting on April 27, 2023 (the time of the required second distribution of proposed Bylaws amendments). Separate votes will be taken on the proposed amendments as presented in the above three bullet points.

A 2/3 vote of Board members present is required for adoption of amendments to the Bylaws, including Appendix A (see Art. XII.2.B; abstentions under the “members present” standard effectively count as “No” votes).

A link to Appendix A is being sent to each Board member for review and have been published on our website: a “redline” (red font/strikeout) version, with each recommended change in red font, and a final “clean” draft for voting purposes.

[End Attachment.]


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1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission.
The meeting was called to order at 8:02pm, and Steve Cron read the PPCC Mission.

2.   Roll Call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
Voting board members present: Maryam Zar, Jenny Li, Randy Young, Beth Holden-Garland, David Card, Murray Levy, Steve Cron, Haldis Toppel, Leeanne Sanderson, Kimberly Bloom, Cindy Simon, Reza Akef, Julie Silliman, Andrew Wolfberg, John Padden, Nina Kidd, Barbara Kohn, Richard Blumenberg, Genevieve Bostik, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker.

Non-voting board members present: Cindy Young, Joanna Spak, Michael Edlen, Nancy Niles, Sue Kohl, Kathy Russell, Kevin Niles, Ryan Craig.

The President certified there was quorum.

3.   Introduction of attendees.
LA Department of Public Works, Streets LA gave some remarks and answered some board questions and fielded concerns. Guests included Robert (Rob) Sewell, Head of Construction
Michael Cox, Danny Cordova, James Hawkins, Street Maintenance Division and Dan Halden External relations Team. Marisol Rodriguez was not present.

They announced a new website in the coming months and said they want to increase ease of access to basic services and streamline requests made. Their effort is to improve external relations and community interface. Dan gave a shout out to Councilmember Traci Park and her staff (specifically Gaby Medina, with whom he had worked before) and commended them on the work they’re doing alongside this, and other agencies.

Michael Edlen, Alternate for Area 3, thanked street services for filling in many potholes through these months of rain. He mentioned the sink hole that was recently repaired on Jacon and wondered what would happen if that might be collapsing. “Is there prevention, or do we wait for the site to give, and then fill in a 311 request?”  Dan said he’d send someone out to take a look, but a 311 request can be made with an urgent commentary, so that the service request is received, and crews will come out to assess/inspect. He will follow up with a status update.

Cindy Simon mentioned a construction trailer in Area 6 (Corona Del Mar area) that has long been parked there with nothing seemingly going on. Street Services guests said they’d make sure they send their Investigation and Enforcement Division to take a look. Reza Akef brought up code enforcement as someone who does construction in the neighborhood, because he thinks they enforce/cite selectively. He was assured that enforcement and investigation is handled fairly and to report any infraction he sees.

The board thanked our guests and acknowledged the work of CD11. Street Services reminded the board that contact details included in the service request can be very helpful if there is a question as to the service request.  Dan Halden also confirmed that there would be no STAP roll-out in the Palisades within the first year of the Tranzito Vector contract. More outreach is planned this summer. (See more under President’s report below.) Dan said there would be a website as well as a map and a dashboard for better community outreach, that will be made available to communities.  The President thanked Dan and encouraged the outreach. She also thanked them all for the re-repaving of Temescal Canyon.

A4.   Approval of Minutes:  April 13, 2023, were approved as distributed (

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings:
The agenda was considered as presented.

6.   Treasurer’s Report. 
The Treasurer thanked Vice President, Jenny Li, for her assistance and reported in his stead at the last meeting, where his connection audio was unstable (from Houston).  He reported that the PPCC bank balance is $43,977.11. He also reported that he has delivered to Johnson, Foster, Fitzgerald & Darling our documentation for tax returns.

7.   General Public Comment.
7.1.   Betsy Collins from The Village Green announced that their 50th anniversary celebration is coming up on August 13th, with balloons and food and music. Please mark your calendars and send ideas.

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President announced that the PCOC is posting information on our website, under the “Potrero” tab, as it becomes available to us. She, along with Cindy Simon and Dave Card, met with Waste Unlimited and Robert Buenrostro (RAP Maintenance supervisor) to review weeding, trash cans, repairs and more. She announced that repairs continue to be made across Potrero Canyon and thanked RAP & BOE. She reported that new trash cans would be placed along trails and that doggie bag dispensers would be added. The PCOC sign committee was working on choosing the signs from the options presented to us. The community will be responsible for providing doggie bags. She announced that on May 10th, the PCOC will be holding a meeting with Kristen Ly (Project Manager from BOE) and will report back.

Dave Card reported on drainage being fixed at Potrero, and said he observed during our walk-through that soil slippage was also being addressed. He also mentioned the Library Zoom meeting where Richard Fisher was the speaker guest, was recorded and Richard reported on planting and weeding. Encouraged all to see the recording.

He reported that, at the behest of Cindy Simon, Richard said he would be willing to work with/train Palisadian volunteers to help with the weeding. There is a five-year project underway to ensure that at least 80% of the planting at Potrero Canyon Park is native plant (not weed). In June weed whacking will be done with machines, on the upper side of the Canyon (in the Fire Modification Zone). The president reported that a new contractor named Marina, which would be addressing watering/sprinklers and irrigation, has been introduced to us. Watering will be reduced in Spring, increased in the summer. Homeowners along the rim are encouraged only to clear brush on their property (not into the park property), which is under the control of BOE and will be separately instructed to clear brush by LAFD.

8.1.2.   The President announced the appointment of the PPCC Nominating Committee, 2023, co-Chaired by Steve Cron and Sue Kohl, alongside Haldis Topple, Nancy Niles and Ryan Craig serving as committee members. She said the committee had been formed prior to the last meeting (held on 4/13) and they’ve begun their work to find a slate of officers to nominate at the final May meeting of 2023.  The President reminded the board that Officers all enjoy a one-year term and must be re-elected or newly elected each year, in June. The Nominating Committee will bring their slate of nominees to the board on May 25th.  A Candidate forum, if needed will be on June 8th. Election will be held on June 22nd.

8.1.3.   The President announced that she met with members of Area Seven and Transp. Advisor at PCH and West Channel to discuss safety and forming a task force, following a fatal crash last weekend. She said CalTrans has made plans for a revamp of the intersection, which has been met with city approval, and would soon be implemented. She has asked CalTrans to remain open to community input even after changes are implemented (possible Pole Top cameras were discussed for information gathering not just enforcement). Expect an update soon. She also spoke about a crosswalk planned for Channel Rd. and Stassi Lane, which may be ill-advised. Expect more information/discussion agendized. She has also sent email to jump start the PCH Taskforce meetings (see more below under LAPD update).

8.1.4.   The President announced the PPCC 50th Anniversary and a meeting/call with CD11 and other organizations for a big community celebration. She encouraged everyone to send in their ideas and announced the formation of a new Outreach Committee. Among the celebrations that might be rolled into one big community gathering in recognition of community are the Historical Society (50 years), The Uplifters (Rustic Canyon – 100 years), The Village Green (50 years), and PPCC (50 yrs)! Look for plans for a big bash to celebrate community (perhaps at Simon Meadow). Randy said he has put together some historic papers, including a letter from President Ronald Regan, congratulating the Community Council. The President suggested a display of history, some street closures, perhaps a survey sent to people for ideas and to use this big moment for the community to celebrate our unique community and to go out and figure out how we can – yes monitor policy – but also to bring people together and celebrate community. She asked people to sign up for the PPCC Outreach Committee, send ideas and expect a report from meeting with CD11 on May 4th.  She also reported on the June 10th Safety Fair at Simon Meadow, in partnership with CD11.

8.1.5.   The President announced that Jeff Khau will be joining us on May 11th to discuss issues including long tern excavation and development. She said Jeff has been very responsive to some of our issues and has been in touch with the LUC on matters of out of out of scale in the Coastal Zone as well as Area One issues (referred to Murray to say more). Jeff will join us on May 11. Traci Park will join us on June 22, and that may be an in-person meeting. Tbd.

8.1.6.   The President reported on a call with Lance Oishi, Audrey Netsawang and Daniel Halden at Streets LA about our bus furniture concerns. The meeting was set up by Gaby at CD11 and included Chris Spitz, John Padden among others.  STAP pledged that there would be no roll out of new bus furniture for Pacific Palisades in the first year of implementation of the new city contract with Tranzito Vector. Even though three locations were on the list of first-year roll-out, we were told that was an error and no new shelters would be placed in our community in the next year. Thereafter, we were assured that we could customize some factors in order to make the furniture more suitable for our environs. We were further assured that no digital advertising would be featured on Palisadian street furniture and that our coastal zone/scenic route considerations would be duly noted.

8.1.7.   The President reported upon a meeting with CD11 and Carolyn Jordan, Chair of BCC, about Cannabis dispensaries and community review from our two Community Councils. She announced that CD11 staff, including Gaby Median and Jeff Khau, were responsive to our request for community review, in general, and specific review of Cookies Cannabis Dispensary’s “Provisional Permit” which will be up for renewal this summer, and we have requested community review prior to permanent approval. Jeff Khau will do some research and get back to us. The two communities are also discussing fire (VHFHSZ) and construction on narrow hillside streets.

8.1.8.   The President reported that the Community Safety meeting was informative, and a recording is on our YouTube sight.

8.1.9.   The President invited discussion around a community app, to push out information (not just a community safety/public safety app) that becomes available to us and the only tools we have right now are either the (cumbersome) mass email or (limited reach) social media. She suggested a discussion of funding (community/crowd source/other organizations), stakeholders (not just PPCC but all the organizations that are on our board (or active in the community).

The President gave the floor to Cindi Young and her husband, Bart, to talk about the Wissle (app) which is an app that was introduced to her by LAPD, and currently operates in Area One (and can be expanded to other areas). Cindi announced that her own home had been burglarized twice and so her husband decided to create a structure of neighborhood support – Wissle – operable through HOAs. People within any private community can sign up for an alert system to be able to sign up for alerts and receive information that is made available through the app.

Bart shared a one-minute video about the Wissle app and explained how it operates. (It is an app, a website and a system of cameras: (

The President said she wanted the community to consider an app that helps push out information, not just about crime, but about all the aspects of Palisades life, where information is available to people with specific interests and concerns (hikes, celebrations, events, networking opportunities, crime information, alerts of all sorts…).

Board members said they’d like a mechanism that would aggregate all the info now coming into inboxes in an overwhelming way. The President said that was her objective, to aggregate info that people wish to opt in for (receive push notifications across categories). Wissle is growing one community at a time but might not be the all-encompassing app we/she are looking for – something that builds community and not just putting out info/false or incendiary info about crime or alarmist matters that can be compromising to people. Some examples were shared by board members.

The board decided it would be generally valuable to look into an app. The President said she’d continue to look for the right combination and a developer that can help. Bart and Cindi explained that Wissle is growing slowly and finds moderators for each community…discussion continues. The President suggested that Wissle might be a component of our community app (that is not police centric but information centric). She suggested information such as, for example, Erath Day at the Village Green, hike at Temescal Canyon, closures at Potrero Canyon, paving or road closures that are noticed to us and we need to get back out to the community… or other such information (dogs off a leash, log dumping etc…). We need a unique voice.

Genevieve seconded the need for a community app (events to street colures to exercise classes) to push out community-based events and information. Seconded the idea that we need a centralized communication mode (even though some issues will be hot button), and there is a real need for this. For example, as Y Rep, she’d like to get information out to the community, but doesn’t know how. The President shared that she had information from LADWP regarding pole-tops that she would have liked to push out, but only had cumbersome tools. Haldis Topple talked about a common calendar. The President said an app would populate a calendar straight into smart phon.

Steve Cron echoed the need for this discussion (and mode of communication). He noted that the Pali Post is becoming a bi-monthly and he believes we need a go-to place for information people can opt into. Seconded the thoughts about the perils of unmonitored commentary and the spectacle of Nextdoor (type) app or space. The President confirmed that there would be no chat or community-room feature. We would simply be putting out info (not monitoring incoming info).

Kimberly said she liked the idea of getting information out, but believes we must communicate better, and people might sign on to the app, but only as long as we can get our word out. She loves the idea, but how?

The President wrapped up discussion by establishing that the need is there, but the perils must be guarded. She called again for Outreach Committee volunteers (Kimberly, Nina, Steve, Diana, Beth, Leeanne, Michael, Murray… and others signed up), and said she hears everyone agreeing that we need something like this but must guard against the pitfalls that can create an unsafe place. She pledged to continue the conversation and find some resources to develop this, using reliable technology.

8.1.10,   The President pointed out the letters and positions sent, and asked board members to refer to the agenda and read/be informed about them.

i.   First letter of the joint BCC/PPCC sent:

ii.   Letter asking for EIR and community safety in Area One, per last meeting:

iii.   Letter opposing unpermitted concrete structure at 15245 W. De Pauw St.:

iv.   Letter in opposition to AB1287:

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus – None.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives,

8.3.1.   Steve Cron, Area Two Rep announced a “Canyon Clean-up” on Sunday. Open to all. Meet at Starbucks at 10am. Bring trash bags. They will walk up the canyon and collect trash. Bruce and Steve will then pick them up the bags and dispose of them.

8.3.2.   Murray Levy reported about the West LA APC meeting on April 19th, regarding a huge development in Area One. (See PPCC letter: It was a good meeting. An EIR, which we had asked for, was mentioned briefly by commissioners, but not much concern. They hit on a few issues that Murray would like us to concern ourselves with. These include:

a.   Grading (30 cubic yards).

b.   Height limits (how to measure heights on hillside areas).

c.   Compatibility with Brentwood/Palisades Community Plan (which calls for reducing grading and density).

Murray suggested that we develop a position on these issues, and suggested the LUC take this up.

The President put Murray and Steve in touch to discuss the above and the involvement of our PPCC LUC.

She also reminded the board that Jeff Khau will be here at the next meeting, so let us bring this up with him.

She also pointed to the letters written by PPCC in the last two weeks (see above). One asked for the EIR, and another was advocating for less density (not more). She urged everyone to take a look, and asked Steve and board to come up with a position to cover the concerns raised by Murray, above.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives

8.4.1.   Andrew Wolfberg, At-large 2nd Alternate [correction:  1st Alternate], announced Canyon School Fiesta on Sunday April 30th. This is a fundraiser, so he invited all to attend.

8.4.2.   Shirley Haggstrom, TCA Rep, announced a hike to Chicken Ridge on Sunday May 28th at 8:45 am. No Dogs. Please bring water and good shoes. Visit TCA website: (to get info and rsvp).

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives.

8.5.1.   Brian Espin, LAPD Pacific Palisades SLO.
Senior Lead Officer (SLO), Brian Espin, reported that there were 2 burglaries listed in the crime listing, but he thinks it was only one burglary, mapped twice. We also still have some car breaks-ins. Area Eight had reported two men “door checking”. Espin reminded everyone to lock their car doors and keep valuables/belongings off the front seats so as not to tempt a break-in. Car break-ins continue to be the biggest challenge in the Palisades. The President shared the Crime report on-screen. Espin reported a robbery at a convenience store at PCH. An arrest has been made – the suspect is involved in several robberies across other divisions. The Robbery/Homicide division has taken over the case. Reports regarding tagging appear to be the work of local people/kids – not gang affiliated. Most gang tagging will have a moniker and some sort of symbol of gang. This has not yet been identified here in the Palisades.  He encouraged residents to continue reporting tagging to the city, which he said would “clean it up pretty quickly.”

SLO Espin reported on recent vandalism involving teens (explosion/fireworks). He reported that in a recent video made available to him, he had been able to identify the Palisadian family of a young person involved in the incident and has spoken to the parents who have taken responsibility.

With respect to illegal dumping, recent video and photographs (from Cindy Kirven) have helped lead to citations. Street Sanitation will investigate (as well as LAPD), and issue citations “after the fact.”  LA SAN are able to issue a citation after the fact, whereas LAPD can only cite while the offense (dumping) is taking place. The President thanked Brian (as well as Gaby Medina at the Council Office) for their proactive work on this matter and reported that she is aware that the office of the City Attorney/Neighborhood Prosecutors are now involved and looking to warn/cite corporate actors in order to stem this activity.

The President asked about narcotics activity in the Palisades. Brian said he checked with NARC unit and reported that there are no ongoing investigations in the Palisades, but if residents have any information, please pass on to Brian Espin. Allison Holdoff said all Pali High teachers are trained in the use of Narcan and kids are also allowed to carry it as well.

Murray Levy asked about the 3rd fatal accident on PCH in as many weeks. Urged SLO Espin to get some traffic and parking enforcement on PCH to “reduce the carnage”.  Brian said PCH is on the radar of traffic and collision enforcement. He has relayed that he’d like more patrol officers further North on PCH. The reality is, once they come and do enforcement (speed or parking), the bad behavior (including parking) does come back quickly.

The President said she had surveyed some of the fatality locations with others and reported that pole top cameras are among the discussion points that have arisen as far as solutions to monitoring bad behavior, and enforcement after the fact (and even as a deterrent). She also reported that she has sent email to jump-start the PCH task force meetings again (formerly spearheaded by ASM Richard Bloom) and believes that once those are up and running again, they will offer an opportunity to speak in earnest about traffic improvements and safety along PCH from SM, through the Palisades, Topanga and Malibu.

8.5.2.   Zac Gaidzik, District Rep, Supervisor Lindsey Horvath – Not present.

8.5.3.   Michael Amster, Field Deputy, Councilmember Traci Park – Not called on (no report).

8.5.4.   Rad Norouzi, Field Staff, Senator Ben Allen – Not present.

8.5.5.   Allison Holdorf-Polhill, Sr. Advisor, LAUSD Board Member, Nick Melvoin.
Allison said Nick sends his regards. Marquez Elementary is looking for a librarian and undertaking two “incredible” greening projects. Pali Elementary is replacing their grass with turf and were able to secure a crossing guard. Allison is working on securing more Crossing Guards for our schools, alongside CD11.

Revere is having a beautification Day on Sunday. Pali High Graduation will be held on June 8th and Paul Revere graduation will be held on June 9th. Tom Safran has donated money for a Pali High renovation to their quad (approved by Nick). Canyon Elementary’s fundraising event called “Fiesta” is coming up. A bungalow upgrade there and replacement project will be in August (working on a Coastal Commission permit). More detail coming.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives – None present.

9.   Reports from CommitteesNone.

10.   Old Business.

10.1.   Bylaws Discussion & Vote.
Andrew Wolfberg, Bylaws Committee Vice-Chair, presented the second distribution of proposed bylaws amendments, to instate the Palisades Forestry Committee (PFC) as a rotational member of the Culture and Aesthetics category, replacing Palisades Beautiful) and to instate Palisades Americanism Parade Association (PAPA) as a rotational member of the Service Clubs Category (creating two categories of four). The President made a friendly amendment to combine the three recommendations made by the Bylaws Committee into one motion. That friendly amendment was concurrently seconded by Haldis Toppel, Courtney Macker and Barbara Kohn, and passed unanimously. The motion to approve the Bylaws Committee recommendations was unanimously approved by the board.

The President said she was happy to welcome both organizations to the board of the PPCC as they were both important and proactive Palisadian organizations. She thinks they are well placed on our board. She further noted that both Andy Frew and Dave Card, Bylaws Committee members, recused themselves from all deliberations since they each had board roles with one of the two organizations at issue in this Committee recommendation and vote.

The following documents were distributed concurrently with the meeting agenda via PPCC email and posted on the PPCC website:

1)  Committee Report: (and see below)

2)  Amendments “Redline”:

3)  Amendments “Clean”:

11.   New Business – None.

12.   Adjournment – The meeting was adjourned at 8:20pm.


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Meeting announced to be recorded for more than just secretarial purposes.

1.   Call to Order and Reading of Community Council’s Mission. 
The Community Council mission was read by Sue Kohl.

2.   Roll-call of Board members and Certification of Quorum.
The President called roll and established that there was quorum. There were 50 people in attendance.

Voting board members in attendance: Maryam Zar, Randy Young, Beth Holden-Garland, David Card, Murray levy, Leeanne Sanderson, Kimberly Bloom, Cindy Simon, Julie Silliman, Chris Spitz, John Padden, Mary Schultz, Greg Heidt, Barbara Kohn, Richard Blumenberg, Bill Skinner, Shirley Haggstrom, Courtney Macker.

Non-voting board members in attendance: Cindi Young, Joanna Spak, Daphne Gronich, Sue Kohl, Quentin Fleming, Harlan Hogue, Rick McGeagh, Kathy Russell, Alisa Wolfson, Kevin Niles.

3.   Introduction of attendees.
Jeff Khau, Sr. Planning Deputy CD11, Office of Councilmember Traci Park, attended the meeting and gave brief remarks, then took questions.

Jeff thanked everyone for hosting him and said he’d comment on three issues:

1)   The ongoing Castellammare discussion over the four big mega-homes coming into Tramonto and Ravello – reported that CD11 attended the April 19th hearing at WLA APC. APC had serious concerns about the stability of the hillside. Determined that they’d like to see the homes scaled down, but decided that the stabilizing of the hillside will be a net benefit for the community. CD11 supports the building/development project, but wishes to see the homes scaled down. APC did not deny the project but asked to work with the developer to come up with a project that is “appropriate and suitable for the area”. The developer will be going back to APC in summer, likely July, for another review. The developer has submitted revised designs, but not much decrease in square footage or structural footprint. CD11 is a little disappointed, but the developer confirmed that they would be scrupulous about creating stability on the hillside, which is CD11’s main concern. They have also proposed more sidewalk, but the main focus of CD11 is on out of scale size of the proposed homes. The question arose regarding the EIR which this Council requested for this project. CD11 would like to push for an EIR for any big project, but are aware of streamlining options for developers, and are not going against those, at this time. That being said, they do want to address community’s safety concerns over this project. CD11 would like to see this project happen, but with safeguards and reinforced/safer hillside, in place.

2)   Jeff then commented on the non-hillside coastal R1 streets and the out of scale homes that can be built in these “loophole areas”. We find that by reducing height and FAR restrictions, we can eliminate out of scale homes. But SB8 and SB330 intend to prevent local municipalities from creating laws that would get in the way of housing production. In an effort not to impede the development of housing density, the state set a law, that as of Jan 1st, 2018, any additional regulation which would decrease the intensity of capacity, would have to be accompanied with a “sister ordinance” that would up-zone building somewhere else in the neighborhood. The only bypass is environmental related regulations that are not intended to decrease density, but to help protect environment/wildlife. The right strategy for us remains to be determined.

3)   The third point upon which Jeff commented was coastal access for Potrero Canyon Park (trail and bridge projects). Jeff said the park is continuously being improved. The bridge project is currently in its predesign phase. The city posted the Task Order Solicitation for consultants to undertake the project approval and environmental documents, which is required for the predesign phase.  The solicitation was released on April 19. It will take a few months to select the consultant (which requires a sections process and board approval) and designate the consultant. We will then have a better idea of where the design phase is going to go, and we can start the “environmental” on the bridge. Sen. Ben Allen has strongly encouraged the PPCC to send in their letter of support “given the project was requested by the community” and the Sen. has received “strong support” from the community. Regarding the Trail, there is a request for consultants underway and Caltrans has agreed that they will assist the city with an “encroachment permit”, and work with BOE to align the trail with the proposed design. The CAO’s office is putting together a report to accept the money from the Omnibus bill, which will require a City Council motion and an approval from LA City Council. This process will soon be underway, and money for the trail study is already underway, even though the requested budget (request made by BOE for the funding shortfall to be secured in the city’s budget) was not allocated this year. However, BOE has enough funding to get the predesign phase of the trail going, so this is “underway”. The President thanked Jeff and noted that the access roads from Lachman to Enchanted matter is still outstanding and that she trusts work is being done to unearth the reasons why those crucial fire access roads remain blocked by private actors.

Jeff then welcomed questions:

a.   Chris Spitz:  Thanked Jeff and noted that the trail is required by the Coastal Commission. Glad to hear it is going forward. The bridge is not yet required by the Coastal Commission, but what is required is the feasibility study. Where does that stand? When is it expected to be submitted to the Coastal Commission? A new CDP is also required for the bridge. When will that process begin?

Jeff said the CDP will be applied for in due time by the Department of Public Works. Jeff will look into it and provide a tracking number for the permit when available. The feasibility study (BOE calling it a predesign report, which functions as their feasibility study) is part of the current predesign phase. This predesign phase encompasses a component of feasibility as well as alternatives to the bridge. BOE is confused about the term Feasibility Study, so they are calling it a project study/development report. This is the predesign phase that BOE is addressing.

The President clarified that there are two coastal access projects happening at the same time (perhaps unexpected that they are both at the predesign phase at the same time). She explained that the trail is required for Potrero Canyon Park as an element of coastal access and has CCC approval and a good chunk of funding secured by Rep. Ted Lieu, but not enough funding per BOE; whereas the bridge has no CCC approval and requires a feasibility study per the Coastal Commission, but presumably has enough funding though the $11M secured by Sen ben Allen. Noted that these projects are both now in their “pre-design” phase, with money having been procured by BOE for both.

b.   Cindy Simon:  Commented on Ben Allen’s office saying they have “strong community support” for the bridge. She contests that statement and feels that neighbors sense the project was partially presented many years ago without transparent discussion, and wants to suggest that there is not strong support for the bridge. If anyone can back up this conclusion of “strong support”, she would like to see documentation/expressions of it – but she is a longtime resident of Area Six (the neighborhood where the park resides) – and knows of no such strong support for the bridge.

c.   Murray Levy: The Castellammare developer is only dealing with the top 1/3 of that landslide, and to stabilize a hillside, they have to start at the bottom and work their way up. This developer is starting at the top of the unstable hillside and only going a third of the way down. The community worries that this will trigger a landslide and jeopardize many homes, as well as PCH. They believe that an EIR is necessary, and disappointed that CD11 ignored this request at the hearing.

Jeff said the argument for the EIR is legitimate and the office does not oppose it. But they are concerned that the developer will abandon the project that the hillside will remain undeveloped, and by extension, un-stabilized. So, they are requiring the developer to stage their equipment in such a way that doesn’t block access to the roads or obstruct access in any way. They have asked for quarterly progress reports to neighbors within 500 feet of construction – this will pressure the developer to finish the project in a reasonable amount of time. He said he believes hillsides must be treated in a way that is more urgent than other areas where development takes too long. EIR probably won’t happen, but CD11 plans to impose other regulations that may take care of some of the concerns that the EIR would address. Offered to extend the 500-foot zone to more. The President urged Jeff to read our letter requesting the EIR, visit the neighborhood, and understand why we are asking for this EIR, and hope it is not ignored.

d.   Rob Weber: This call for consultants for the predesign phase of bridge and trail – is there a public document where we can see what was requested by the city? Jeff said he knows of the Task Order Solicitation but will find out where it is posted and bring details. Also asked whether the funds received by the city for any project related to Potrero (coastal access in the case of current discussions) will be directed to the Potrero Canyon Trust Fund (as previous funds were). If funds are not specifically directed to that fund, please consider asking Council to pass a motion to deposit the funds into that account because this was a fund that was set up many years ago to ensure that money earmarked for Potrero Canyon are spent only on park efforts. There is a 2004 ordinance passed by LA City Council to set up that fund and the reason was to ensure that they money would be used for this project and not another. Rob also said there is a long history of support for the bridge to provide access to the beach. He said there has been “massive support” for this project through the years. Noted that in 2004, this board unanimously asked for a bridge in the design of the Park. Subsequent to that, articles have been in the LA times and CM Miscikowski established the Potrero Canyon Community Advisory Committee (tax payers paid for the committee), which held over two dozen public meetings that were attended by hundreds of people, and the community input informed the final park (which is now open). One of the primary requests was ensuring safe passage to the beach.

The President asked Rob to wrap up his comments regarding support for the bridge as that discussion was still forthcoming, but did note that the motion passed by PPCC in 2004 was not a call for the bridge but a unanimous expression of support for the park, including a bridge component pending community input. She noted that that community input was to be sought by the Potrero Canyon Community Advisory Committee, but that as Dave Card may be able to explain, those meetings were replete with various diverse points of view and the leadership of the committee at the time called off the public meetings, citing too much rancor.

e.   Caroline Wittcoff: Respectfully disagreed with the comments that [there was] express widespread community support. She echoed the comments of Cindy Simon and said she is a resident of the community since the 1980’s who attended the PCCAC meetings in the 90’s and does not remember conversations about the bridge (just access points to park and other elements). She has recently spoken to community members who similarly have no recollection of any such discussion about bridge access to the county beach. She asked, how can we be driven by community sentiment in the 80’s or the 90’s or even the early 2000’s when so much has changed and we are living in a different city than we were back then, with circumstances surrounding public safety that are not nearly the same as they were when this park and its access points to the coast were originally contemplated. She suggested we need to assess what the current level of community support is. Today, she believes there’s significant opposition to the bridge. It is also appropriate to step back and ask, what is the need for this bridge? This is a lot of money to spend on something we don’t need or want, while economic disparity in the city is greater than it has even er been before. For us to justify spending $11M or more to build the bridge, there has to be a reason and a need for it. If the need is access to the park, we must consider that there are two public access points right now that are accessible to the public, and the CCC is requiring access to the coast from the Temescal Canyon Rd. stoplight/crosswalk. Why would we need a fourth access point? She asks, should we spend this money to provide parks to underserved areas, or even other park needs in the Palisades, rather than a bridge contemplated many years ago, under different circumstance, with no appreciable statement of broad community support.

The President thanked her and informed the board that Jake Ettinger was also on the call and wished to speak. She asked him to clarify why there is an end of May deadline for PPCC’s position of support. She called for questions for Jeff that are not related to Potrero, so we could thank and dismiss him and get to the bridge discussion. [See Item 8.1.6 below.]

f.   Barbara Kohn: Noted that there are 100 single family homes just beyond the Castellammare area where the landslide stands to impact traffic and hundreds of homes and commuters which rely on the stability of the hillside and the flow of traffic. An EIR and a traffic study is mandated to look at the impacts of traffic and construction on PCH. She said from her experience, the quarterly meetings will hardly force the developer to correct course – we will need monthly meetings in order to keep the developers to their word and keep construction contained in a manner that is not highly disruptive to the immediate and adjacent communities.

g.   Haldis Toppel: Noted first that she does not support mega-mansions in our community – but asks: how does a political climate that supports more density will oppose a lower FAR oppose our effort to reduce the size of homes? Jeff said that any regulation that impacts density (units per lot as well as square footage) triggers the “sister ordinance” rule. The more units they can allow per lot, the better, so the decrease of 3 to 1 FAR is a reduction of density, and the state currently asks for an up-zoning elsewhere.

The President thanked Jeff and wished the board’s best to Traci Park and staff.

4.   Approval of Minutes:  the April 27, 2023, were approved as distributed with note as to corrections that may be typographical and not yet implemented, be implemented and uploaded as corrected.

5.   Consideration of Agenda & Upcoming Meetings.
May 25: Officer Nominations from the Board open until 15 minutes before scheduled close of meeting (our meetings are scheduled from 6-8pm). Captain Nassour and Inspector Warren of LAFD Brush Clearance Unit.

June 8: PPCC Officer Candidate’s Forum (if needed) and Officer Elections
June 22: Guest speaker: Councilmember Traci Park (possibly an in-person meeting at the library with hybrid remote feature)

Topics are only a partial list and may be amended.

6.   Treasurer’s Report.  Randy Young reported that we have a balance of $43,977.11 in our PPCC bank account.

7.   General Public Comment.  None. 

8.   Reports, Announcements and Concerns.

8.1.   From the Chair/Presiding Officer.

8.1.1.   The President reported that some LADWP poles were scheduled for repairs and people can see which poles are scheduled. At least one Palisadian location is on the list:

8.1.2.  She shared an open call to those interested in Officer positions.

8.1.3.   She reported that the Outreach Committee met for the first time and is making plans for the 50th anniversary celebrations.

8.1.4.   She reported that CD11 has affirmed September 30th for a date PPCC 50th, from 11-3 pm. Our theme is “Where our community meets the coast”.  She also said the committee had decided to have a presence at the Famers Market in the months leading up to our community celebration, as well as in the 4th of July parade, and have reached out to PAPA for a banner presence and a walking spot in the parade. Look for a report to come.

8.1.5.   She informed the board that Michael Amster’s birthday is May 20th and we will celebrate from 3-5pm at the Draycott (Lounge Area reserved for PPCC and CD11 guests). She noted that he has been proactive and very helpful to us on many issues. Please come out and celebrate him.

8.1.6.   The President conducted an update on funding for Bridge Feasibility Study and Trail progress. She gave the floor to Jake Ettinger following Jeff Khau’s presentation (see above).

Jake Ettinger, Sen. Ben Allen’s office:

Jake reported that they’ve been working on this bridge project for a while – it is a project that came from the community/from a PPCC Committee asking for funding for the project. The Sen. was able to secure that funding for a number of different reasons, including greater community access to this beautiful public park and to offer safe passage to the beach (given fatalities of people crossing PCH). He has since heard from “one community member” in opposition to the park but has overwhelmingly heard support for the pedestrian bridge, through the years. Today, they want to check in again, even though they have support from the Advisory Committee (the Potrero Canyon Community Advisory Committee (PCCAC)) to make sure the community still wants the bridge.

He then clarified some comments made by Jeff: There is now no “feasibility study” (as required by the CCC) forthcoming. There is now a “project initiation document”, which they asked for when they met with the City and determined to put out a request for consultants. That consultant will be selected by the end of May. This will not be a feasibility study as in, can we build this, but rather what are the conditions that will make this build safe to build. Part of the process includes “a comprehensive community outreach program”.  This is the formal consultation process which will take 12-18 months.

He further noted that the Coastal Commission will likely approve the bridge project (he had spoken to the Coastal Commission and they’ve affirmed that they would support it), and opined that the “lateral trail”, which is a trail slightly longer than half a mile, would not be as accessible, particularly for mobility challenged park-goers.

The President shared her screen with the board in order to explain that the process of the (now called) Project Initiation Study (not feasibility study) has begun, money has been procured to secure the consultant, and that an outreach component will unfold. Completion date is estimated for 2030. She said she wanted to hear from the board and wished for Jake et all to also assess whether there are points of view that have not yet been considered, and should be heard.

1)   David Card: In 2004 the PCCAC met monthly for three years and their activities were reported on assiduously by the Palisadian Post (and others). Their finding was that this bridge would provide ‘safe and direct access’ to the beach. Nothing has changed, he says, as far as community support, from 2004. He thanked Sen Allen for the $11M. “Some of us worked very hard to get that money and we really appreciate it.” He thought this would be a great addition to the Palisades, and to the broader city, and would be great for the commercial village as well. He also noted the favorability of the bike path extending into Potrero Canyon Park, and made an argument for equity access, since taxpayers paid/will pay for this park from all over LA. He said security issues can be addressed with locking gates, and asked us to consider that the bridge may help the Park be designated as a “Regional Park” which he said would have twice as much access to Quimby funds that might help upgrade other facilities at the Pali Rec Center. He believes the people of the Palisades will support this bridge. Dave also reminded the board that the bridge project has been discussed many time though the years, and has been presented to this board in previous years, as well as to the Pacific Palisades Park Advisory Board.

The President noted that in 2017 (when she was then PPCC Chair) the City, under the project leadership of Rob Hancock, made a presentation to the PPCC presenting their plans for the Park, the riparian way and the schematics of a bridge across PCH. She also clarified with Jake that when he stated that a PPCC Committee requested the money for the bridge, he was referring to the Potrero Canyon Community Oversight Committee. He said he thought it was, but he would have to check. He asked Dave Card to clarify.

Dave explained that George Wolfberg chaired that committee and because it was such a long drawn-out process that was very contentious at times, he decided the committee would not continue to meet publicly. The fifteen members then continued to meet and came up with a consensus position, with which they were pleased. Thereafter, George invited members of the committee to meet with city officials to help shepherd the design they recommended, into reality. Over the last (more than) a dozen years, a small group of people have been continuing in that effort (never violating the Brown Act) by meeting with City officials and project managers to bring the project to fruition. Eventually, it became less than a handful of people giving feedback to the plans, as they developed.

2)  Beth Holden-Garland: spoke about fire in the Palisades and wondered how are we going to protect the community? “We have to be safe.”

3)   Leeanne Sanderson: Found it generous that ben Allen secured money for the bridge (said she was “actually shocked”) and appreciates the 15 people on the committee and their efforts, but “the world has changed”. She said she uses the crosswalk at the PCH crossing and finds it useful. Could that be a better way to cross, rather than to put up a bridge, she asked. Shall we first assess park usage to see if there is a need? She is very concerned about people coming over… worries about people stuck on the bridge or the park, and finds there to be a lot of issues with how the bridge will work, as well as concern among residents about the bridge as an access point. She suggests a Farmers Market survey of sorts to assess support, because her (Area Four) constituents are not aware of the bridge and when she mentions it to people, they are surprised. She suggested that the ideas of 15 people on the Community Advisory Committee cannot make up for the voice of 30,000 residents.

4)   Chris Spitz: She would like to hear from the community about this bridge project in the present day, given changing circumstances and the prospects of the bridge being now practically at hand and not conceptual. The idea of equitable access should be weighed against the fact that there is already coastal access via the CCC approved trail (thanked those working to make that a reality) and that other areas of the city are park poor. This money should therefore be carefully used here [in the Palisades], if we do not need to spend money for the bridge when there is a lateral trail access point already funded and approved. This is a question of equity and justice as well, and should be addressed. There must be a community discussion surrounding the bridge.

5).  Rob Weber: The bridge will save lives. The crosswalk could have been a good idea that was considered at the time, but Caltrans disagreed and opted for the bridge as the better form of crossing. People are still in favor of the bridge but a pedestrian-controlled crosswalk could still be considered. He clarified that the reflection of input that went into the creation of the Potrero Canyon Park was not just from 15 people – it was from hundreds of community members who attended public meetings far larger than anything he’s ever seen the Community Council host, and their collective input went into the recommendations sent to the city. Those should hold. No time should be wasted to get the bridge project underway.

The President wrapped up the discussion by affirming that she too has heard expressions of doubt from the community regarding the bridge and believed the conversation may need to be had at PPCC because there is a 2004 motion on record, where this board (previously constituted) has unanimously approved in concept the bridge over PCH access (from the beach to Potrero Canyon Park). Today, she said, Senator Allen would like a letter of support for the bridge, but she does not have one to send them. A letter was not written in 2004, because the motion, though unanimous, was contingent on community input. That decision stands, but today we must ask, was that input had. With the required “Feasibility Study”/”Project Initiation Document” in-hand, alongside an open Potrero Canyon Park does the community wish to consider matters of access, public safety, and park usage with experience and feasibility findings in hand? Today’s agenda discussion was not an action item, but a way for her to start this conversation and begin to hear from the board, as we prepare to receive the Project Initiation Document, and embark upon this 10-year project to see the bridge to fruition. She suggested that once the study comes out, she will refer it to the LUC or the PCOC to consider and make a recommendation to the full PPCC (as we always do) and thereafter, advise our findings to the Senator’s office.

She thanked Jake and offered him the floor one last time. Jake thanked everyone and focused on the equity access angle, concluding that this bridge will be a good thing. He noted the community outreach element of the Project Initiation Document and suggested we leave the outreach to those professionals. He acknowledged the public safety concerns of community and board members, and pledged that elements of public safety would be addressed with respect to the bridge. The President thanked him again and asked that he informs the PPCC when the PID is ready for the community to consider.

8.1.7.   The President reported about a meeting with CD11, DCR and Carolyn Jordan about Cannabis (dispensaries and community review). Community review will from here forth be a part of any dispensary license granted in our two neighborhoods.

8.1.8.  The President announced that a PPCC CD11 YMCA Safety Fair will be on June 10th  at Simon Meadow.

8.1.9.   She reported on:

i.  Logo

ii.  Street closures for Anniversary celebrations

iii.  Palisades App

8.1.10.  The President offered a Caltrans update regarding work on Chautauqua, which is to begin soon. They will take input and readjust as time goes on. She also informed the board that she has asked for the PCH Task Force meetings to start again (has urged the ASM’s office to restart those). She noted that the crosswalk referred to in discussions today was a safe crossing that was accomplished under the leadership of George Wolfberg as part of the PCH Task Force and similar good work (for example at Chautauqua) can be done again if the task force is reconvened.

8.1.11.  She noted committee assignment updates – she asked people to look online and see those assignments

8.2.   From Officers and Chair Emeritus

8.2.1.   Dave Card said the PFC is working with Palisades Elementary and a family who lost their daughter and will be planting a memorial tree at the school. Thanked Bill Bruns and Nick Melvoin for their work to make this happen.

8.3.   From At-Large and Area Representatives

8.3.1.   Area Four: The President gave an update that Temescal Canyon Road and Jacon Way are both buckling (yet again) and reports have been made to My LA311, and been acknowledged.

8.4.   From Organizational Representatives

8.4.1.   PP Historical Society announced a lecture at their annual meeting at Theatre Palisades on May 23rd.  RSVP at Historical Society website.

8.5.   From Government Offices / Representatives

8.5.1.  Brian Espin, LAPD Pacific Palisades SLO reported that we have been going well, crime wise. There was a burglary investigation on Sunset. Suspects had fled but had smashed back window, ransacked the house, and accessed the safe. Cameras were helpful, but the back yard camera wasn’t working.  Has been conducting extra patrols in the Park as well as along PCH. Not too much activity.

8.5.2.  Skylar Payab, Field Deputy from ASM Irwin’s office, reported that the PCH task force will get going again on June 8th. She also reported that ASM Irwin’s had a sidewalk session at Estate Coffee which went very well.

8.5.3.   Rad Nowroozi, Sen. Ben Allen Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Westwood Field Deputy, reported that they plan to have fire and community safety meetings about which they will inform us.

8.6.   From PPCC Advisors and WRAC Representatives.

8.6.1.  Lou Kamer, PPCC Transportation Advisor.  Not present.

8.6.2.  Joe Halper, PPCC Parks Advisor.  Not present.

8.6.3.   Sharon Kilbride, PPCC Homelessness Advisor.  Not present.

8.6.4.   K.C. Soll, Emergency Preparedness Liaison.
K.C reminded all that Fire Service Day was coming up on Saturday and a CERT Community response team will be on hand to get to know community members.  She has also organized another Cert training, in person, at Pacific Palisades Calvary Christian Church (701 Palisades Dr.) taught by firefighters, for seven weeks, which is free and very much worthwhile.

9.   Reports from Committees.

9.1.   Nominating Committee Report was given by Haldis Toppel, Committee member and Area Three Primary.

Haldis Toppel announced that The Nominating Committee, co-Chaired by Steve Cron and Sue Kohl, with members Haldis Toppel, Ryan Craig, Nancy Niles, and Rob Weber as Legal Advisor, nominated the following candidates for each of the officer roles for the 2023-24 PPCC term (July 1 2023- June 30, 2024):

President: Maryam Zar

Vice President: Sue Kohl
Recording Secretary: Beth Holden-Garland
Treasurer: Jenny Li

She reported that other nominations from the board (including those who wish to self-nominate) can be made up to 15 minutes prior to the close of the scheduled second regular board meeting in May (May 25, 2023).

10.   Old Business. None.

11.   New Business.  None.

12.   Adjournment.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:08PM.

[Attachments:  Item 8.1.6; see also  Potrero Trail Bridge Updates]

Potrero Canyon Trail & Bridge Updates and Discussion:

On March 9, the City of LA CAO’s office authorized a Construction Projects Reports report authorizing BOE to enter into an agreement with Caltrans on the pedestrian bridge (please see pg. 3, section C).

BOE has confirmed that it IS technically feasible to build a bridge, the PID, which takes approximately 12-18 months, is intended to conduct a geotechnical study for the position of the bridge, basic design elements, among other engineering elements, and includes a comprehensive professional outreach campaign to ensure the community is engaged in project elements and able to weigh in with any views or concerns.

As this PID process is already underway, and a consultant will be selected in the coming months to realize the PID and the community outreach component, we are moving forward with this project. We strongly encourage the PPCC to send us their official position letter by the end of May. Given the project was requested by the community, we have received much strong support for the project, and we have been telling the community about the project for years (including in our 2021 Summer Newsletter which was sent to hundreds of thousands of constituents in the Palisades and beyond), we are operating under the assumption the community still supports the project.


Lateral Trail Project:

  • In 2022, BOE requested $3.4 million in the City’s budget to cover their projected cost for the total project
  • Thereafter, Congressmember Lieu secured $1.15 million in federal earmarks for the project
  • BOE subsequently reduced their budget request to the City’s budget office to reflect the difference after the Federal funds were secured
  • In April 20, the City budget will be finalized, and if money has been secured for this project, BOE will have access to those funds after July 1st 2023
  • BOE is in charge of this project and will commence project plans as soon as they have funds (either after July 1st with City funds or in Fall 23′ once the Federal earmark funds have been received)
  • Once project begins, there will be:
    • Order for Design (several months)
    • City-Caltrans work to secure encroachment permit or create a Joint Use Agreement
    • Environmental and Design Phase (approx 2 years)
    • Construction Phase (approx 1 year)
    • Completion – estimated 2027

Pedestrian Bridge Overcrossing Project:

  • The City has already received the $11 million in funds secured by Senator Allen’s budget request
  • BOE and Caltrans are finalizing in the coming weeks an agreement so Caltrans can begin the PSR – PDS (Project Study Report Project Development Support)
  • Project Steps:
  • PSR – PDS Study which includes community engagement (takes about 1-2 years)
  • Environmental and Design Phase (approx 2 years)
  • Environmental and Coastal Commission permits
  • Construction phase (about 2 years)
  • Completion – estimated 2029/2030

While we know these timelines are much longer than we hoped for, we at least know that both projects are on track and moving along. All of the relevant Caltrans and BOE project managers are working closely together and we will continue to check in with both teams to ensure the projects are moving along. We will also have them reach out directly to the PPCC when they require community engagement.

PPCC Past Discussion & Position:

     MINUTES FOR MAY 27th 2004 (yellow highlight not original – added for ease of finding related passage(s))  [See yellow highlighted version at:  Potrero Trail Bridge Updates]

Members in Attendance [including Alternates]:  George Wolfberg, Margaret Goff, Kurt Toppel, Ted Mackie, Larry Jacobs, Norman Kulla, Norma Spak, Stuart Muller, Mark Kremer, Laurie Frost, Marguerite Perkins Mautner, Michael Kane

  1.    Introduction of Board and Audience.  The Chair called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. at the Library Community Room. Ted Mackie read the Purpose of the Pacific Palisades Community Council. Members of the Board and audience introduced themselves.
  2.    Adoption of Minutes.  The minutes of May 13th were approved as submitted.
  3.    Announcements and Concerns.

3.1.    Treasurers Report.  In the absence of the Treasurer, the Chair reported that the checking account balance is $10,192 and the savings account balance is $4,289.

3.2.    Announcements from Councilwoman Miscikowski’s Office.

Monique Ford:
Asked for community input regarding location of bike racks [contact Laurie Frost our Board liaison].
Stated that De Pauw St. from Swarthmore to Earlham meets criteria for one-side-only parking,
That a request for one-side-only parking on Ravoli Dr. had been withdrawn, but would be considered if so requested by the Fire Department,
That repair of the cement stairway and the wood stairway from Adelaide to Entrada has been approved and work should begin shortly.
Reported that the City would reduce the number of bus benches, which have proliferated along PCH.

3.3.    Other Announcements.

  1. Muller reported on the 6/18/04 meeting of the Palisades Rec. Center Park Advisory Board, when the concert issue was to be discussed. Only one PAB board member, Chairperson Stacey Feldman, and Park Director Cheryl Grey were present. In response to the question “Did the PAB vote to approve the Concert Series” Chairperson Feldman stated that the PAB doesnt vote to support anything. It exists to serve the Park Director and to provide advice that will help the Director achieve the goals she sets. Muller pointed out that the Director controls the agenda, and that the Board is chosen by, and serves at the discretion of, the Director. Director Grey stated that she felt that she had no need, and was not required by the Brown Act, to publicize the PAB agenda, other than to post a copy of it at the front entrance to the park office, in spite of The Palisadian-Post’s repeated requests over the years that copies of the agenda be regularly mailed to them for publication. Muller opined that the Rec. Center Director and the PAB are not functioning to protect the communitys interests, and that Park Directors do not really want public input in the decision making process, but rather want to operate with bureaucratic autonomy. Muller stated that L.A. Rec. and Parks and the local park have for years exhibited, a pattern of self-serving resistance to community input and involvement in the park management decision-making process that effects us all. Muller also pointed out that the main entrance to the Recreation Center is currently at times being restricted to one lane, creating a traffic and safety hazard. M. Ford will investigate.
  2. Muller discussed efforts to include an additional left turn lane going southbound on the PCH from Temescal Canyon Road during the redesign of the Will Rogers State Beach parking lot. County Beaches and Harbors, and L. A. DOT support the project. Caltrans is yet to be heard from. Laurie Newman, Senior deputy to Sen. Sheila Kuehl offered to assist in this effort and will contact appropriate city, county and state officials.

3.4.    The Chair reported:

That the nominating committee had made its report per the bylaws on May 6th, and that additional nominations may be made until the election of Council officers on June 10th.
There will be a Coastal Commission hearing on the Bel Air Bay Clubs expansion plans on June 10th. Kurt Toppel will attend and represent the PPCC.
DWP is seeking a community representative to facilitate communication with the Department.
After a complaint re vehicles parking on the island in the Library Parking Lot creating a dangerous situation for legally parked vehicles attempting to exit marked spaces, the Library will have the curb painted red.
The City will conduct a training class on the Navigate LA geographic database program if there is sufficient interest.
The DOT/watch the road program will be set for a future agenda.

3.5.    Filming Issues.

Larry Jacobs reported that since the City Attorney’s office has recently held that film production companies cannot be compelled to work through the EIDC, some productions may now be getting permits directly from the City. The EIDC now seems to be confused as to what its authority is [as well it should be]. This may now present us with the opportunity to seek redress through Cindy Miscikowski’s office.

  1.    Old Business.

4.1.    Potrero Canyon Development.

Stuart Muller distributed and discussed a map showing the boundaries of three adjacent open spaces in Area 6: Temescal Canyon Park, Potrero Canyon Park and the coastal area between them, from Via de Las Olas to the PCH. Muller urged the creation of the Palisades Bluffs Preserve in this last area, to protect it and maintain it in safe condition, and to create a place where people and nature can gently interact. Muller referred to the entire area as the Pacific Palisades Coastal Parks.

Los Angeles City Recreation and Parks representative Jane Adrian began by announcing that her branch of the Department of Recreation and Parks was being transferred to the Bureau of Engineering and that she may no longer be in charge of the Potrero Canyon project. Ms. Adrian went on to explain that Phase II, filling the canyon is complete except for the repair of two landslides, which will require about $1.2 million. The City, lacking funds, would like to sell the 33 properties it owns on the canyon rim, but is prohibited by the Coastal Commission from selling any of these properties until restoration of the canyon is complete. The City plans to ask the Commission to lift this requirement on the condition that the City agrees to place the proceeds from property sales in a designated account. Ms. Adrian distributed the draft of a motion proposed to be made to the City Council by Cindy Miscikowski to create this separate account.

Board members and the audience pointed out that the draft (a) did not specifically state that the sales proceeds are to be spent in Potrero Canyon, (b) that placing all 33 properties on the market at once would disrupt neighborhoods with dozens of near simultaneous construction projects, (c) that to date the City does not have a plan for the canyon, (d) in the absence of a plan there is a risk that the sales proceeds will vanish leaving the project incomplete.

The following motion of Norman Kulla, seconded by Ted Mackie, passed unanimously:

“The Pacific Palisades Community Council
1. Opposes the sale of 33 residential lots as presented in the draft motion received by the Board on May 27, 2004, under signature of Councilperson Miscikowski;
2. Supports the sale of a sufficient number, but no more, of the City owned developed (improved) lots in Potrero Canyon to fund the completion of Phase II, but not Phase III;
3. Supports the sale of such additional City owned lots in Potrero Canyon, incrementally and sequentially taking into account the environmental impact upon the surrounding neighborhood, as is necessary to fund Phase III only after further input from the community is sought by the City regarding the design and plan of Phase III, the PPCC Board approves such design and plan, and such design and plan includes, but is not limited to, the following particulars:
a) Entrance to the park
b) Permanent funding for park maintenance
c) Restoration of riparian habitat
d) Parking
e) Bathrooms
f) Recreational pads
g) Construction of a walk bridge from the mouth of Potrero Canyon over PCH to beach parking
h) EIR of project upon abutting neighborhoods
I) Landscaping
j) Permissible uses
4. All funds raised by such lots sales shall be deposited into the proposed escrow account and all such deposits shall be used exclusively for the Potrero Canyon Project until completion of all phases.”

4.2.    Consideration of Summer Concerts at Pacific Palisades Rec. Center.

A proposal to hold outdoor concerts at the Recreation Center for four hours on four Sunday afternoons is opposed by neighboring residents and the residents on Hampton Place are threatening legal action. A separate proposal has been made by the Chamber of Commerce to show films on eight Saturday nights on the Field of Dreams. The Palisades Rec. Center Director was not in attendance, for the second consecutive council meeting. S. Muller reported on the 6/18/04 meeting of the Palisades Rec. Center Park Advisory Board, as detailed under 3.3 above. A motion by Marguerite Perkins Mautner to oppose both proposals was tabled with her agreement pending receipt of more details of the proposals.

  1.    New Business.

5.1.    Assembly Bill 2702 — Proposed State preemption of local zoning to permit second dwelling units on R1 zoned property.

This proposed legislation is intended to increase the supply of affordable housing by preempting local ordinances that place restrictions on creation of granny flats in areas zoned for single-family residences. Assemblywoman Fran Pavleys’ representative Louise Rishoff began the discussion by announcing that although Fran opposes the bill, it has been approved by the Assembly. Laurie Newman, Senator Sheila Kuehl’s representative, told the Council that Senator Kuehl remains undecided on the issue. The Board and audience expressed concerns about the bill’s impact on the Palisades, particularly that the bill
-Does not require that the property be owner-occupied thus essentially legalizing duplexes in areas now zoned R1.

-Preempts local regulation of such matters as parking.

-In areas such as the Palisades largely zoned R1, the bill would nearly double the number of allowable housing units further stressing our traffic and infrastructure problems.

-By making no mention of CC&Rs the bill leaves these contracts in legal limbo.

No member of the Board or the audience spoke in favor of the bill.

Ted Mackie moved that the Council oppose AB 2702 and that the Council so notify Senator Kuehl, Assemblywoman Pavley and Governor Schwartzenegger. The motion passed with one abstention [Kremer].

The meeting was adjourned at 9:10 p.m.

[End Attachment, Minutes of 5/11/23]


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MINUTES FROM May 25th 2023 (pending)



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