The Council is obviously terrified that some Rancho homeowners might replace their stable spaces with granny flats. And so last night they broke the law 

We’re not going to repeat our admiration for SDUs as a potential source of quality affordable housing in Burbank, nor provide any more proof that this town was once chock full of granny flats in even its nicest and most affluent neighborhoods. It all goes without saying.

Three things Burbank did last night:

— The council foolishly admitted that they don’t like granny flats by enshrining into local law a complete prohibition on them in their always favored Rancho neighborhood,

— By doing so, City Attorney Albano was tacitly admitting that whomever cooked up the current rules didn’t correctly ban them in R1-H in the past by using the proper language; and,

— Emily Gabel-Luddy showed that she doesn’t give a damn about how bad or inconsistent she looks when it comes to dealing with personal economic conflicts of interests in her own neighborhood.

Last year the California Legislature deeply liberalized state law when it comes to encouraging the development and acceptance of granny flats in residential neighborhoods. Last night the Burbank City Council went out of its way to try to illegally circumvent the intent and purpose of this mandated liberalization by changing their zoning rules to actually outlaw them in a large section of town.

You can’t do that with this new state law. If some future Rancho resident ever challenges Burbank in court over this blanket prohibition, Burbank’s gonna lose. They’re also on the completely wrong moral and practical side of the issue here. Granny flats are a very good thing, and that’s why the state’s actively promoting them in Code.

Awkward Burbank. They always get it wrong, and they always pull shit in doing so.



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11 responses to “The Council is obviously terrified that some Rancho homeowners might replace their stable spaces with granny flats. And so last night they broke the law 

  1. Matilda


    What a bunch of hypocrites. All this talk about needed housing in Burbank, the push for development and yet the opportunity arrives and undo influence by a resident council member to turn back the clock. You are right…there are fewer and fewer horses in backyard stalls these days. As the elderly move out, the new young families don’t have the same interest in equestrian. At the very least EGL remains consistent with the NIMBY message..can you say Whole Foods.

    • semichorus

      Yeah. And remember EGL’s big show a few years ago when she publicly “recused” herself from a Rancho development issue and then turned around as a “local resident” to lobby from the podium the same council membership about her position on the topic?

      She was a sham then and a sham now. Her sense of political morality is awfully flexible.

      Burbank’s gonna get nailed on this blanket exclusion if challenged. In light of the new state law about encouraging ADUs, they can’t attempt to carve out a big new exclusionary residential district in anticipation of its effect.

      Especially if they’ve gone on record as not liking ADUs!

      • Anonymous

        Emily is a citizen, like the rest of us. She has a full right to lobby the Council during public comment like any other citizen.

        • semichorus

          Not if she wants to avoid a conflict of interest charge as an elected official. She has no “free speech” right in that department. It’s a COI.

          Recusal means RECUSAL. It means you can’t remove yourself from a group and then turn around and lobby the same group you just removed yourself from. Recusal does not involve just refraining from voting and deliberating. You can’t lobby them either.

          You people are idiots. Albano looked very foolish to allow that stunt.

          And what happened to Gabel-Luddy’s oh-so-conscientious recusal impulse on Rancho issues? Like, last night?

          • Anonymous

            Apparently you are wrong. Again.

            • semichorus

              “Free Speech” rights do not allow a politician’s legal conflict of interest to slip by. If EGL truly had one back then, the legal remedy would not have allowed her to STILL lobby her fellow officeholders to her own personal point of view and chosen course of action. It’s ridiculous to even argue about.

              This equally ridiculous R1-H exemption will also never hold up in court if challenged by a Rancho homeowner. The council can’t anticipate the effects of the new state law by summarily exempting an entire residential zone from its application. Especially when they have gone on record as not liking granny flats — which keynotes this as a hostile action that was designed to deliberately fly in the face of the express wishes of the Legislature.

              No good public policy reason for the exemption, either, that at least couldn’t be addressed by minor changes in Code specifics that would still allow granny flats to go into R1-H. Like keep an extra distance from the horses, if that’s such a big worry.

              It was a pathetically transparent, sleazy, self-dealing, retrograde move. Typical Burbank. And EGL is just shameless in her hypocrisy. I also got a big laugh that the earlier Code language didn’t properly exempt R1-H from the construction or use of granny flats. Albano made sure to correct it last night.

              Clearly, whoever tried to slip this in years ago (exactly when after 1989?) screwed up. Or were trying to be sneaky.

              • Sherri

                Amateur hour at the circus. Unprofessional conduct. What’s it going to take for the rest of the council to confront her behavior?

  2. Anonymous

    The guy last night was getting tons of staff run around with an air quality study and 4 garages. They didn’t help him I’ll bet they’d spend to the limits to save Rancho.

    • Anonymous

      How do YOU know that staff did not help that guy. Rogers made a clear point that they should.

      • semichorus

        They did help the hospitality group. That’s one reason why it was a city “mistake.”

        It’s also a city government sub-group.

  3. Bob

    Rogers made a clear point ? Nothing Rogers says is clear, like the ass he is he makes a joke out of everything. Those who think he is funny will not be laughing when they are paying for all the screw ups as taxpayers

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