Tuesday, June 2, 2009

DPOA Update


DPOA

UPDATE: The City Council voted unanimously (Paula Lantz attended via teleconference) to submit petitions for all of the city's properties in favor of recertifying the DPOA. That gave the DPOA 54.xx% of the property owners submitting petitions. The process will move to a public hearing and vote on July 20.

Downtown councilmember Freddie Rodriguez was unable to make the meeting. He is an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) working in an ambulance and had been called to an emergency. According to Mayor Rothman, the councilman had requested that the item be rescheduled to a special meeting when he could atttend, on Thursday at 6:00 pm. Councilmember Paula Lantz noted that she was scheduled to be out of town at another meeting on that date and could not make it. While I've (echoing the Mayor) called councilmember Rodriguez the downtown councilmember, actually downtown is shared by three councilmembers, Rodriguez (the bulk of downtown south of 2nd street except between White and Palomares where it's south of 3rd Street), Lantz (most of the Antique Row area and north of 2nd Street east of Garey), and Soto (north of 2nd and west of Garey as well as north of 3rd between White and Garey). A district map can be seen on the city's web site at: http://www.ci.pomona.ca.us/city_departments/city_council/district_map.pdf.

Interestingly, there was a dueling message from councilmember Rodriquez. Mayor Rothman stated that the councilman had asked for the delay. Councilmember Lantz answered that she had spoken to the councilman and that he was OK with it moving forward since there would not be a final vote, but only the acceptance of the petition for recertification. The mayor then countered that he had spoken to Rodriguez AFTER Lantz had and that he had reversed his opinion and DID request the delay.

To some observers, it appeared that the "fix" was in and that this issue had been maneuvered to marginalize Lantz, a supporter of the DPOA. I have no evidence of such, but it was certainly interesting that one councilmember's wishes to be part of the process (a duly noticed meeting, by the way) was deemed more important than another councilperson's and that there appeared to be no consideration of the time and inconvenience that this action caused for those citizens who felt strongly enough to come out for this issue. This kind of action doesn't appear to pass the "smell" test. Council members miss meetings all the time. Do we stop the actions of the city? While I appreciate the nature of the councilman's job, this is something that he knew when he ran for the council. He was surely aware that his job might have to force him to make some important decisions on which service to the community was more important to to have to live with the consequences of those decisions.

The actions of the council will be really stretching the timeline for recertification of the DPOA. In order for the assessment to be collected by the county, all the information MUST be turned in by July 10. This delay will significantly reduce the time for the process.

So, once again, we call on anyone who wishes to speak on this important issue to show up at the council chambers on Thursday, June 4 at 6:00 pm.

REMINDER: The council has, over the past month of so, instituted a new policy on speakers. Speaker cards must be turned in prior to the beginning of discussion at the beginning of the meeting. No late speaker cards are accepted. So it is imperative that if you wish to speak that you be at the meeting ON TIME and that you turn in your speaker card as soon as possible after arriving.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm disappointed in Paula Lantz. I expected more from her. Why the heck would she let Mayor Rothman set the meeting on a day she cannot make it? And like the blog said, councilmembers are always absent, government should have continued last night. With more than 100 people in attendance, one would think they would have been allowed to say something. Carrizoza was right when she said that the council should allow the speakers to present their arguements, but of course, no one ever backs her up. Good for nothing council.

Anduhrew said...

I'm going to try to make that meeting. I couldn't be there yesterday because of class. Thursday I have my finally Cal Poly Govt meeting and that ends right at 6pm. I hope it ends early so that I can fill out a speaker's card.

John Clifford said...

Anduhrew,

A suggestion to you or anyone else who thinks they might be late. Have someone you know fill in and turn in your speakers card for you. Have them turn it in near the time that the meeting will start so that you'll be called toward the end of the speaking period. That should give you plenty of time to get there and still have an opportunity to speak. There is no requirement to show an ID when you turn in your card, so anyone can do it (because a lot of folks have never done this before and they're not sure who to turn the cards in to, a lot of more knowledgeable folks turn in multiple cards anyway).

John Clifford said...

Anon,

I don't think Paula had a chance. She noted that she could be petty and ask for the delay until she could make it, but that would defeat the item as it would have delayed the passage beyond the time limit for the county tax assessor.

Anonymous said...

Thank goodness the safety of our community rulled the day, and we will be able to cross Monroe w/o near death experiences!!! I applaud residents of Lincoln Park as well as Downtown Supporters for taking back their community!!! Thank you Council for investing in a positive VISION!!!

Ed said...

John,
I love data, so can you tell me whether the traffic studies showed the Monroe traffic was coming east from Orange Grove or north from Garey? In other words, is the 100 block of Garfield going to ask to for a closure too?

I know you mentioned before that the residents didn't want a temporary barrier out of fear that it would become permanent, but given all the unknowns wouldn't that have been the prudent choice?

John Clifford said...

Actually, there was a temporary barrier done about 20 years ago. So the neighbors are pretty much against that.

There has actually been no formal traffic study done that would have indicated where the traffic comes from. There is a large amount of data concerning the speed and the vast number of instances of running the stop sign, as well as accidents on the street.

My own observation is that most of the traffic (especially during rush hours, both morning and evening) comes across Orange Grove, although some certainly comes from Gary. The perception (without data) is that the traffic sees that there is a lineup to get on a crowded freeway and then decides to cut across so they don't have to wait in the backup to head east on McKinley.

I know it's not the data you'd prefer, but it's all I have. One of the proposals last night was to conduct an exhaustive traffic survey, but the council decided against that option.

Anonymous said...

The DPOA conversation at the council meeting was just outright jaw dropping.
It was fairly obvious what was going on and for that reason alone people need to show up at this Thursday meeting to show support for the DPOA.
Mark

Ed said...

No data! LOL

Hopefully it all works out. I would have thought just a month with a temporary barrier would provide a little more clarity. So we're not trying a temporary barrier because of the residents' experience when Council member Soto was 3 years old? LOL

In the end, it might be the perfect solution, but I'd feel more confident that public money (I think $160,000) was being wisely spent if I had some data.

John Clifford said...

Just realized that perhaps splitting last night's meeting into two posts may not have been as good an idea as I thought. It seems like there has been some crossover in the comments from one post to the other. Might be a bit confusing to readers of this post to see references to budget and Monroe attached to this post.

Pride in Garfield Park said...

Thanks for the post, John. I've been pretty absent from the blogosphere for the past week or so, but I just stopped by Metro Pomona to read the post about the shift in meeting times. I also read the Bulletin's account of the shift and couldn't for the life of me figure out why the schedule of one council member would be preferenced over the schedule of another. Your take on the situation makes sense to me.

I'll add the observation that sometimes meeting organizers hope a hostile crowd will disappear if given enough hoops to jump through. I hope everyone whose presence was ignored Monday night will feel sufficiently marginalized to get pissed off and re-appear tomorrow evening, preferably with friends and neighbors in tow. I'll be there.

calwatch said...

By the way, the measure pass unanimously - with Lantz calling in from the SCAG junket, er, retreat in Lake Arrowhead. If there is any consolation, it looks like she missed dinner and the chance to hobnob with other politicos. http://www.scag.ca.gov/retreat/

Most other agencies have retreats at conference rooms or universities, or at locations conducive to exploration of future projects - Metrolink's retreat in Temecula was chosen, for instance, to preview an extension in Southwest Riverside County. Especially in this budget situation, though, it looks tone deaf for SCAG to be meeting in Lake Arrowhead when cities and counties across the region are laying people off and furloughing others left and right. Not that listening to the public has ever been a strong suit of SCAG, of course.

plugintodan said...

I did find it very curious that the DPOA conversation from last Monday's city council meeting was rescheduled for a special Thursday meeting that worked out a-OK for the councilmembers. Nice that Lantz was on phone for Thursday, but they pretty much ignored the mass crowd that was present. Thursday was much more calm. Perhaps that's what they were going for. If anyone has any thoughts, I'm writing a long piece on Pomona, so e-mail me. As for Mr. Clifford, your interview has been very helpful!