Category Archives: Uncategorized

Rogers might want to hold off on that supplemental income plan

 

 
Seems staff’s been getting cold feet about the idea of letting council members dual-serve as airport commissioners. The issue came up in February, and will be discussed again tomorrow:
 


 

Probably not. Outside of the council wanting to collect another paycheck, we can’t understand the motive behind dual membership. But who knows this New Burbank. They’ll probably vote for kids and dogs serving on the Commission. Preferably rescue.

An additional warning.

 

 

So in other words, what Fletcher got 20 years ago means nothing. And wouldn’t that be a fun one, losing a council office?

 

 

I.e., don’t do it, council.
 
 
 

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Say it ain’t so!

 

 

 

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Living on top of a freeway always makes for a great neighborhood

 

 

From Tuesday night’s staff report on that First Street project up for council approval:

DISCUSSION
a) Project’s Contribution toward the Creation of a Great Downtown Neighborhood

What are the amenities and distinct features that make a great neighborhood? Great neighborhoods are places where people want to live and visit. Great neighborhoods are easily accessible, safe, and friendly. Great neighborhoods are not just buildings. Great neighborhoods are made up of various amenities and distinct features that  collectively draw individuals to want to live, work, and visit; they provide something for everybody.

They then go on to tell us what makes for a great neighborhood. Naturally, much of it involves everyone taking the bus and then spending the rest of the time biking around making sure not to hit each other.

Interesting detail buried within the document though. Staff’s insisting on a five percent low-income set-aside requirement for the 260+ units being planned. That’s a great idea, even though it apparently hasn’t been agreed upon as yet.

The developer first wants the council to boost the density allowance on the property through a Planned Development. So far so good, although there’s no assurance that this low-income deal will ever happen (will they give the developer what it wants anyway without the set-asides? What if the developer still says “No”?)

But one detail within the condition is troubling:

vii) The Developer shall set aside five (5) percent of the proposed 261 residential dwelling units as deed-restricted units that are to be rented only to eligible low-income households making 80% of the Los Angeles County Area Median Income (AMI) for a period of no less than 30 years; these deed-restricted units can also be provided off-site within the city. (Condition No. 13.)

No way. Unless these set-aside units are part of the same property they will all get quickly forgotten.

Why? There will only be about 15 of them to begin with, and if placed anywhere else in the city no one will be remembering for very long either where they were or what they were about — and of course all to the advantage of the landlord.

We can see it now. One low-income tenant gets the deal, and then when they move out in six or seven years (or less) the vacancy immediately goes to market rate. Like who’d know the difference? Would future applicants be told about this same reduction deal on a unit scattered anywhere around town?

Oh yeah? In 25 years, even? (these set-asides are supposed to remain in place for 30 years.)

On which planet is this? Not Planet Burbank. Anyone else remember what happened the last time the city insisted on low-income set-asides for a downtown development?

It was about 30 years ago over on Angeleno. In exchange for the same type of relaxation of zoning requirements, a number of those units had nice 10-year deals for prospective lower-income applicants. Everything went great for about seven years — until those same tenants all suddenly got eviction notices (Rogers should remember this story — it was incredibly well documented at the time).

The city denied there were ten-year deals on the property until the tenants in desperation finally ran to Kramer and McConkey for help. After a bit of research, those two then-new council members quickly realized that these tenants were all getting screwed out of a couple of years of their low-income deal, and staff was forced to agree. The landlord had to relent as well.

And those were in the same location. Can you imagine then what will happen in 10 or 20 years if some new off-site deal is approved for First Street Junction?

“Set-asides?”

“What set-asides?”
 
 
 

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And shoot them in their cars

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The Republican response

 

 


 
 
Hillary seriously underestimated the number of deplorables in that basket.
 
 
 

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Local insanity

 

You can only imagine the kind of vision these clowns have for your future.

From today’s Leader article about the mass destruction of those ficus trees on Magnolia, of which only a few are causing any problems:

Understanding that some residents and business owners would be shocked if all of the trees were removed at once, Sugars said they will be cut down at a staggered rate.

He added that it is important for residents to understand that, although it may be upsetting to see these trees that have been around for about 40 years go away, the decision to replace them was based on improving the city.

“When you run a city, you really have to think in decades and for future generations, and this is that kind of decision that’s being made,” Sugars said. “It’s unfortunate that these beautiful trees are going to go, but in the long run, it’s the best thing for the city, and we need to hand the city off to future generations in good shape. Leaving those trees in there would not be leaving the city in good shape.”

And packing in two thousand more apartments in Downtown Burbank is.

In other words, there’s no good reason to do it now — cutting down those trees — and so we’re trying to come up with some limpdick excuse to justify a stupid decision that a previous council made at the prompting of staff employees who were too lazy to have their own people maintain the trees, and which we won’t make any effort to undo.

Where btw is Golonski on this one? And how about going after Gabel-Luddy’s neighborhood next? Those old Rancho trees are getting pretty shabby.

Change is good, people!
 
 
 

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Drain the swamp

 


 
 

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Compare and contrast

 

 

 

(Click on the image to see what we had representing us 45 years ago. Then think who we’re lucky enough to have now.)
 

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City wants to give Boys and Girls Club $150,000 to refurbish school district bungalows at Jefferson and Harte

Always check the Exhibits for the nonsense.

This year’s CDBG proposals up for approval tomorrow night involve several funding giveaways to the BUSD. One concerns a low five-figure amount for “Summer Youth Employment” services, which is a direct subsidy to the district for a program of limited if not dubious value (poor BTAC by comparison on the line above is getting half that amount for homeless services).

That’s bad enough when it comes to local priorities. But buried deep within another Exhibit is a capital expenditure proposed on behalf of the Boys and Girls Club, which is not a Burbank agency btw. It’s apparently going for another subsidy to the BUSD, this time to rehab several of its own buildings — what ever “rehab” means. (And why is the request cited elsewhere as property acquisition?)

What is it with all the pull this B&G Club has with these people? Who the hell even uses that place enough to warrant all of the preferential attention it gets? Last year they wanted $500,000 for this same purpose, and the council didn’t give them a dime. This year staff’s trying to quietly fit in 150Gs.

Besides the potentially illegal commingling of funds (California law basically prohibits cities from giving their local school districts money), what ever happened to all of those various school bonds the voters approved? Where did THAT money go to not be able to improve a school bungalow here and there?

And — always the ultimate question– why all these constant subsidies to the Boys and Girls Club?

A number of years ago there was major handwringing over whether or not the city should cough up money just to help redo the tennis courts at Burroughs. That was during the Kramer-McConkey era. Now there’s no question or concern about this financial pipeline?

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To start a new life

 
(In some instances…)

This comes straight from staff’s Tuesday night agenda item for the EIR on that ridiculously bloated “Old IKEA” project.

 

 

Why are they using such blatantly promotional language? You’d think they were the developer.

What do you want to bet that their idealized vision above will closely resemble the proposed project? What a win for Burbank.
 
 
 

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I’m your new mommy now

 


 
 

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Does this new generation realize that “Mother’s Day” is not about moms celebrating themselves? 

 
A quick look at the local Facebook pagery-ness suggests a weirdly contorted message. Rather than sitting back and basking in the heartfelt congratulations, it’s now become mom self-promotion time. 

Look at me!

Wonder what’s next — Santa taking bows on Christmas Day?
 
 
 

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Savagery on Magnolia

So the city has suddenly decided to cut down those beautiful ficus trees en masse? And not incrementally — if and when they caused sidewalk problems — as promised?

They obviously waited until right after the election so that this wouldn’t be a super-charged political issue. Cynical bastards.

To his credit, Dave Golonski and his wife were always adamantly against their wholesale elimination. He pleaded restraint whenever the issue came in front of the council.

What you’re seeing here is ideological eco-fascism at its worst. And expedience. There’s nothing inherently wrong with those ficus trees. Only a few of them were causing problems.

Tree City, eh? And please. Spare us the extolling of their replacements, staff. You’re assholes to be doing this.

Scratch the produce butcher dreams, obviously. It’s Pig City, and everybody on the outside knows it. You’ll be lucky if you get a ‘365’ over there. Not even that.

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Will Burbank be getting a produce butcher?

 

Does it deserve one?

This is the model for the new Whole Foods stores. It’s built on the food court idea, much like an Eataly or Grand Central.
 

 
The floorplan at Bryant Park is similar to that projected for Talaria. It’s smaller than most, and multilevel. Instead of rows of staples, there are little alcoves here and there devoted to the specific product types.

A heavy emphasis too on prepared foods, and with a centralized ordering scheme built around small computer terminals.
 

 
And of course, the now famous,
 


 

Don’t laugh — it’s actually a good idea. Although he doesn’t ever appear to be very busy.

Now, is anyone going to be making this kind of effort for Burbank? Is anyone going to demand it?

If not, then why do it at all.
 
 
 

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Of course

 

 

That’s what this firing is all about, along with the Russians. The R’s have been upset since July that Comey wouldn’t go after her in a criminal prosecution. Trump and Sessions could care less about his departmental mistreatment of Hillary Clinton.

From Rosenstein’s letter recommending termination:
 


 

Schiff and others better think twice about wanting a “special prosecutor” on this, including Elizabeth Warren. Anyone appointed by a Republican will immediately try to shift the investigation into Clinton/Obama territory. They’ll start going through Michelle’s checkbook for improprieties.

No?

Ken Starr, anyone? Remember how that one started?

A special prosecutor appointment will be a big mistake. Unless of course you want Bill and Hillary thrown in jail on some bogus claim. Or Michelle and Barack.

 
 
 

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Oh, there’s planning all right. It’s just mindless

 

Muldoon’s totally on to it:
 


 

Those half-way median crossings on Glenoaks are nuts. And removal of the bus benches on San Fernando is civic hypocrisy at work.

Burbank cajoles and inhibits all at the same time — which proves the claim that these so-called improvement “measures” (like encouraging bike riding) are only being used as an excuse for more development. Total insincerity. Any “planning” going on isn’t for the rest of us.

Bikes and pedestrians and motor vehicles also don’t mix. Ask DeBlasio. Ever seen what’s it’s like when bike riders caroom all over? They’re a menace to the pedestrians!
 
 
 

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