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PVP Watch Newsletter – May – 3 – 2019

To Our Friends and Supporters

In This Newsletter
PVE – Council Actions.
RPV – NCCP
RPV – Charter City
RPV – Proposed Civic Center
RPV – Charter City
RPV – Fire Station 53
RPV – Ladera Linda Soccer Fields
PVE – Council Actions
The three PVE Council candidates endorsed by PVP Watch; Michael Kemps, David McGowan and Victoria Lozzi were seated at the PVE Council on March 26th. One of their first actions was to elect Councilman Kenneth J. Kao as Mayor. Councilman Dr. Davison’s nomination to be Mayor Pro Tem failed for lack of a second which resulted in a tirade by Dr. Davidson as to why he should have been appointed Mayor Pro Tem. His effort was unsuccessful and new Council Councilman David McGowan was elected by a majority vote of four to one to be the Mayor Pro Tem.
A major campaign issue of the new Council Members was the financial condition of PVE’s treasury and they have moved swiftly by meeting with the City Manager on April 9th. While the details were not made public, it was announced in the PV News that City Manager Dahlerbach had been dismissed. We anticipate as the new Council moves forward there will be further actions relative to PVE’s financial condition.
RPV – NCCP – Here We Go Again
The NCCP (National Community Conservation Plan) has returned and is now 885 Total
Pages broken into Section 1 Implementation Agreement and Section 2 Final Draft NCCP.
RPV residents should recall that the proposed NCCP was available for review during the recent Holiday Season and the comment period ended December 31, 2018. The NCCP has been updated with a reported 885 “red Line” pages.
The following comments are from Section 1 – Purpose and Need
Section 1.1 – Introduction; the proposed NCCP planning area encompasses the 13.6 square mile coastal city of Rancho Palos Verdes. Inclusion will include the endangered Palos Verdes blue butterfly, the endangered El Segundo blue butterfly and the endangered coastal California gnatcatcher. In addition to the three listed species, the Draft NCCP addresses the conservation of seven additional species, six plant species and one bird species that are not currently listed as endangered.
Under the proposed action, the PVPLC (Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy) would act as Preserve Habitat Manager for the City.
Section 1.2 – Purpose and Need for Federal Action; Listed species present or historically present within the City include the federally endangered El Segundo Blue Butterfly, the federally endangered Palos Verdes Blue Butterfly and the federally threatened coastal California gnatcatcher.
This section continues with “although the PV Butterfly is not currently known to be present within RPV, there is designated critical habitat for the Blue Butterfly should it return.
The population of threatened coast al California gnatcatchers that occur in RPV and in other within the Peninsula is considered isolated from the reminder of the United States population.
Section 1.4 – Developing the NCCP/HCP; The NCCP sub region includes the entire Peninsula, however, only RPV has entered into an NCCP/HCP planning document. RPV residents should be concerned…….
Editor: We recognize that targeting of the NCCP is narrow but the amount of information at 885 pages is overwhelming thus the need to target critical NCCP issues confronting RPV residents.
The NCCP includes ALL RPV properties, in the NCCP. Also, the fact that RPV gives NCCP control to the PVPLC for 40 years. The 10 year history of Preserve management by the PVPLC, so far, clearly demonstrates that the PVPLC does what it desires without input of RPV resident or RPV City Hall. There is no logical reason why RPV City Hall is including private properties in the NCCP. This is but another attempt of City Hall attempting governmental control of private properties. There is already excessive control of private properties by City Hall.
The NCCP almost ignores that there are NO Blue Butterflies and no findings of gnatcatchers in the RPV area as well… What is not being reported is that there are an abundance of gnatcatchers in the Huntington Beach / Orange County area as well as further South and into Mexico. There has been NO recent documentation of gnatcatchers in RPV. Residents are also not being told that there is a pending lawsuit that removes gnatcatchers from the Endangered Species list. If there are no Blue Butterflies or gnatcatchers a bigger question becomes why is there a Preserve when the reasons for the preserve don’t exist?
PVP Watch urges ALL RPV residents to make your opposition to the NCCP including all private properties in RPV known to RPV City Hall.
1-   A brief message to the RPV Council (cc@rpvca.org) stating that you object to including private properties in the NCCP will suffice.
2-   Suggest sending an Email copy to fw8cfwocomments@fws.gov.      Include “City of RPV NCCP/HCP” in the subject line.
RPV – Charter City
RPV Council agenda For May 7th – Item 3
  Consider the implications of, possible advantages of, and possible disadvantages of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes further exploring whether to become a charter city. (Wynder) (1 hour 30 mins.)
–       Recommendation: Receive and file this staff report, consider the implications of, possible advantages of, and possible disadvantages of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes further exploring whether to become a charter city, and provide such direction to City Staff and the City Attorney regarding the same as the City Council deems appropriate.
–       We can presume that the result of Mr. Wynder’s presentation will be that the Council will act to put a “Charter” Initiative on the November Ballot. RPV has been thru the Charter Initiative before. A Charter is NOT something that is purchased off a shelf. A Charter must be developed / written to protect public not Council interests. Last year a select committee spent considerable time composing a “Charter” but could not agree on a final product. For example, the need to control any form of taxes, fees, assessments etc. A good Charter should contain clauses that stop any increases of taxes, fees, assessments etc. w/o voter approval. There are other issues to be considered as well.
–      However, we suspect that the RPV Council will attempt to push thru the previous incomplete Charter under the guise that something is better than nothing. We will disagree, a poorly written Charter is worse than having no Charter.
–      Stay Tuned…
 RPV – Proposed Civic Center
We reported in the previous PVP Watch newsletter (3-15-2019) concerning the Civic Center Advisory Committee (CCAC). As subscribers may recall, a dispute had developed between the “Committee” and City Hall concerning what the Committee was “charged to accomplish.
The committee had a special meeting on April 25th to “discuss the issues.” Bottom line is that committee chair Bill Gerstner and deputy chair Noel Park as well as committee member Susan Shultz have resigned. Committee member Carolynn Petru has been appointed Committee chair. The committee now has just four members and what actions the Council may take is not clear. An issue is that the Council had not given clear direction as to what the advisory committee is to accomplish.
There are several hard issues that require decisions; Whether or not a new City Hall is to be included, a new Fire Station at the Civic Center, a Sheriff’s sub-station and of consequence, how can the land be used. City Manager Willmore was tasked with resolving the land use issues with the “Fed’s.” Item 20, on the 2019 Goals and Action plan is “Resolve land use issues with NPS” was targeted for April 31, 2019. We are not aware of current status. Perhaps Mr. Willmore will have an update for next Tuesday’s Council meeting.
The April 16th Council agenda (Item 3) contained some speculative data on a possible new City Hall. As projected costs start to float about, support for a new City Hall seems to disappear. Another option is developing a plan for needed upgrades and modernization.
In so far as a new Fire Station and new Sheriff’s sub-station are concerned, these are critical issues that must be resolved. Does RPV plan to pay for LA County used facilities? The preliminary plans included ~12,000 sq.ft for a sheriff’s station. Unknown is the degree of conversation with LA County Fire & Sheriff regarding facilities at the propose Civic Center.
Fire Station 53:
One matter that most everyone can agree is that Fire Station 53 located on PV Dr. South is obsolete and should be replaced. There is need for more safety services such as Paramedics but a new facility is critical. The issue is where to place a new Fire Station? This subject is not new and PVP Watch has posted previously. There are some who believe that the best location is the new / proposed Civic Center. PVP Watch believes that a new fire station closer to the existing station is a better alternative but where is that. Options are limited.
We have suggested Abalone Cove where Annie’s Stand was once located, that location might include a lifeguard station. An advantage is that RPV now owns the land (a grant from LA County). A disadvantage is that there would likely be interference by the Coastal Commission. However, a new fire station would be built by LA County not RPV. It seems to us that Supervisor Hahn would be in a much stronger negotiating position than RPV. Another factor is that a new fire station here could be initiated almost immediately.
Ladera Linda Soccer Fields
As we reported in our March 15th newsletter, RPV is negotiating with PVPUSD for purchase / lease of the Ladera Linda Soccer fields.
Pvp Watch questions why RPV would consider either a purchase or lease for this property. One reason might be to control / eliminate AYSO usage of the property. Another might be to create a nature preserve trail head / parking lot for hiking in the preserve area. This would move a problem from Del Cerro to Ladera Linda.
PVP Watch recognizes that PVPUSD has serious budget issues and would likely be open to land use discussions. However, it is dubious that RPV would dip into its reserves for an amount that would be of interest to PVPUSD. There may be state funds for land that would be converted into “Reserve” areas. We the PEOPLE are set against any further “Preserve” land acquisition in RPV. Adding the Ladera Linda soccer fields to the preserve area is but a further reduction of “Active” recreation on the Peninsula which is already in short supply. Any thoughts that RPV already provides ample active recreation facilities are Wrong.
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