La Habra Heights “Three Amigos” Axe O...

La Habra Heights “Three Amigos” Axe Oversight Committee

There are 60 comments on the www.LaHabraHeights.net story from Jul 14, 2009, titled La Habra Heights “Three Amigos” Axe Oversight Committee. In it, www.LaHabraHeights.net reports that:

Road's Committee Axed on 3-2 Vote.

La Habra Heights - The Public Works Committee was eliminated with a 3-2 vote (Baroldi, Vipperman, Westerhoff) at the July City Council Meeting. This continues the removal of resident scrutiny and involvement, and increases dependence on, and cost of, city government.

The Emergency Preparedness Committee was first to go. This group of trained residents was to be our resource in an emergency, since City Hall is closed most of the time, and in an earthquake, or other event, outside emergency workers, and even city workers may not be able to get here.

Parks and Recreation has changed from a Commission primarily focused on overseeing spending and infrastructure at the Park, to an event planning committee.

A Budget Committee, including residents, was abolished several years ago.

The Roads Committee was established in the mid 1990s to analyze the condition of City streets and develop a program to repair them and for ongoing maintenance.

The Public Works Committee recommended By-Laws following the 2001 Resolution, with a role including review of plans for public works projects and review of spending. Committee members Jerry Shipman and Stephen Blagden told the City Council about the importance of citizen oversight.

Resident John Pearce said we should depend on the City Manager to oversee staff and spending, without interference from residents. (editor- oh yeah that makes sense)

Things became heated in recent months when the Public Works Committee pointed out that the annual Roads Maintenance program was months behind schedule and maintenance funds, voted for and paid by residents in their annual property tax bill, appeared to be diverted to other uses.

Council members Baroldi, Vipperman and Westerhoff did not want to create conflict between city employees and residents on a Commission, and didn't think the Public Works Committee did much.

Council members Stan Carroll (who voted for the Commission in 2001) and Brian Bergman tried to get the others to understand the need for resident oversight.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at www.LaHabraHeights.net.

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DISGUSTED RESIDENT

Pico Rivera, CA

#1 Jul 14, 2009
With all the garbage going on at City Hall, did everyone there forget about reinstating the Fire Station on the East side of La Habra Heights? Shouldn't public safety come first. How hard would it be to take one of the many Fire Engines that sit behind City Hall and move it to the East Side Fire Station. Place a small trailer there along with 2-3 of the hard working, dedicated Volunteer Firefighters and you would greatly increase fire protection and reduce response times.
Over the Top

AOL

#2 Jul 15, 2009
I found the comments and decision by Vipperman suspicious and backstabbing . He stated that his campaign was based on volunteerism and committees, only to change his mind over personal bias. We all know how he feels about Stephen Blagdon, who is (was) on Public Works. We all know how vocal he was with his bias against Norm Zezula, who was, the Chairman of EPC. These are public records and no denying of them. Even Vip with his spin and decision can't change that. So it stands to reason the 3 Amigos are living out the uproar many residents protested against around voting time. Bet if any others were on the committees other than the 2 that Vipperman has outwardly blasted, the situation might be different. Good for Stan and Brian; they spoke up and defended the community for once in a long time. Baroldi even got pissy-snippy with Stan over Stan's position. Power plays always come back to haunt. The city might be caught with an emergency and no committee to offer their assistance. Hacienda Road may fall down the canyon before it get's fixed and then what? Howard to the rescue? Burned bridges everywhere.
Change

Bell Gardens, CA

#3 Jul 20, 2009
Huh, our own version of "change we can believe in".

Replace free vigilant residents with high paid bureaucrats, under guidance of tres amigos.
We don't want to hurt the feelings of city employees by pointing out when funds are misused.

Gracias, Tres Amigos
Over the Top

AOL

#4 Jul 20, 2009
I was under the impression that Parks & Rec remained a council appointed committee with Mrs. Vipperman as chair. Did it change? They have a meeting agenda posted on the bulletin board at the MPR. If they are a council appointed committee, look as to why; the Chairperson?
Fed Up

Bell Gardens, CA

#5 Aug 6, 2009
It's bad enough the Improvement Association controls the City Council, now they want to take over the Water Board?

How did the Improvement Association President and Treasurer get appointed to the Water Board?

I didn't see any notices in Heights Life or at City Hall, not to mention not seeing any notices for the November Water Board Election.

Looks like the Water Board wants to follow in the steps of the Improvement Association and just appoint themselves without benefit of an election.

Does the Improvement Association Treasurer really use "Enron" accounting?

I hope some good people run to give the voters a choice!!
Disgusted

Glendale, CA

#6 Aug 8, 2009
Why would they want an election? That would be fair game and dealing from the top of the deck.
Hill Topper

Santa Monica, CA

#7 Aug 10, 2009
The La Habra Heights Improvement Association is the finest and most altruistic organization in the Heights. It has existed for 71 years. For this fine organization to be constantly maligned by Stephen Blagden and George Edwardz is shameful. These two trouble makers do nothing positive in this town. They constantly get up and lie at all meetings. They desperately need attention on TV. They have some overpowering need to cause trouble over and over again. The money they cost the community in demands for public information every day costs the city thousands of dollars each year. They have no goal in life other than to cause pain and suffering throughout the community. The Improvement Association has a CPA, Joe Mericle, Whittier. The books are audited by that firm. Kimberly Soares had no financial responsibilities with her position on the Board. No one on the Board knew of the financial problems in her business. If they had, she would have been immediately removed from the board.

And I am tired of that twerp Blagden saying Board members were not asked for at the Annual Meeting. Pam McVicar, president, very clearly asked if there were any nominations from the floor, so shut up about the Board not giving the audience a chance to put people on the Board. I heard someone ask Blagden if he wanted to be on the Board and he was shaking so bad he could hardly answer "no". We are all tired of it.
Tired of it. It is time for Stephen Blagden to move to another town. We have all we can stand, what is it, eleven years of this yawhoo? By the way, The Jingle Bell Ball always pays for itself, because the cost of the tickets per person cover the costs of the event. The Halloween Haunt and the Easter Egg Hunt's costs come out of the dues paid by the residents. We do not charge for those events, nor do we charge for Music in the Park which attracts about 2,000 people every Wednesday night. Those funds are carefully separated by our Treasurer and those funds are used only for that purpose. For Stephen Blagden to constantly lie and malign the Improvement Association is dastardly on his part. He never does anything positive for the community. He is never seen helping at any event. His entire life is getting up on TV at meetings and causing havoc with his lies. He has to be stopped. The town is sick of him and his best friend, George Edwardz aka Ickabod Crane. George LLamas, George Edwards, George Obnoxious. I wonder what his name is today? Why do people constantly change their names? Are they hiding their past in another town?
.
Blagden's web site allows no comments to all his fantasy rantings. Amazing that all he does is stand up and rant and rave, but no one is allowed to rant and rave on his web site. George Edwardz and Stephen Blagden are the worst thing to ever happen to La Habra Heights in its years of city hood. They are an ill wind that blows no good. Blagden spends his days writing Anonymous election hit mailers and George spends his days making up lies and spreading them through the town. Actually, they are very shabby, tragic figures.
NewFlix

Bell Gardens, CA

#8 Aug 10, 2009
Hill Topper wrote:
The La Habra Heights Improvement Association is the finest and most altruistic organization in the Heights. It has existed for 71 years.
The Improvement Association has a CPA, Joe Mericle, Whittier. The books are audited by that firm.
Pam McVicar, president, very clearly asked if there were any nominations from the floor...
By the way, The Jingle Bell Ball always pays for itself, because the cost of the tickets per person cover the costs of the event.... We do not charge for those events, nor do we charge for Music in the Park which attracts about 2,000 people every Wednesday night. Those funds are carefully separated by our Treasurer and those funds are used only for that purpose. Amazing that all he does is stand up and rant and rave, but no one is allowed to rant and rave on his web site.
It is always easier to malign people you disagree with than to document your disagreement. Unfortunately for your point of view, the facts don't match your rants.
The Improvement Association has been a great organization for many of its years. The Improvement Association was the organization that was instrumental in the founding of the city.
But, it is not the same group now.
Apparently, you were not at the June 2009 Annual Members meeting. President Pam McVicar did not, and could not, ask for nominations from the floor because the election had already been held at an undisclosed time and place with unknown participants. Only Election results were announced at the annual meeting. That is a fact. Ask anyone who was there.
The Board also changed the by-laws in secret and wouldn't let the members see them. That is a fact. Ask anyone who was there.
Unlike past annual meetings where the annual financial report was passed out to attending members, the 2009 meeting saw Board members reviewing the document and refusing to share it with the audience. That is a fact. Ask anyone who was there.
The Jingle Bell Ball does not pay for itself according to the Improvement Association treasurer, the financial reports, and the Board members.
The 2008 Financial report is on the www.LaHabraHeights.net that you malign. Jingle Bell Ball had revenue of $6045, and costs of $7053. By any normal standard of accounting that is a loss.
At the 2008 Members meeting the Board acknowledged it operates at a loss and they accept that, and it is subsidized by other funds.
The shortfall comes out of other funds. Since it is a private limited party, and Board members don't seem to relinquish their seats for regular members, a question of appropriateness can arise.
The Treasurer did state in 2007 that the Jingle Bell Ball "broke even" only after transferring in surplus funds from Music in the Park.
Under past by-laws of the Improvement association, also on LaHabraHeights. net if you want to verify, they were required to print their annual financial statement in Heights Life, or otherwise distribute to members. That has not occurred for many years.
Music in the Park is a revenue generator for the Improvement Association, and the vendors. If Music in the Park were for the enjoyment of Heights residents it would not be necessary for the Improvement Association to post advertisements about it in other cities, and residents wouldn't be circling for parking spaces.
The Improvement Association also has a web site, and they do not have a forum or allow comments on their articles. Letters to the Editor are censored, unless they come from friends of the association.
If the Improvement Association returned to its past openness and disclosure of by-laws, financial reports and meetings, they could once again regain trust of residents.
They created an air of uncertainty by closing the association, changing by-laws in secret, holding secret elections and refusing to share their financial reports.
Why would anyone not question that behavior?
Disgusted

Glendale, CA

#9 Aug 10, 2009
Hill Topper wrote:
The La Habra Heights Improvement Association is the finest and most altruistic organization in the Heights. It has existed for 71 years. For this fine organization to be constantly maligned by Stephen Blagden and George Edwardz is shameful. These two trouble makers do nothing positive in this town. They constantly get up and lie at all meetings. They desperately need attention on TV. They have some overpowering need to cause trouble over and over again. The money they cost the community in demands for public information every day costs the city thousands of dollars each year. They have no goal in life other than to cause pain and suffering throughout the community. The Improvement Association has a CPA, Joe Mericle, Whittier. The books are audited by that firm. Kimberly Soares had no financial responsibilities with her position on the Board. No one on the Board knew of the financial problems in her business. If they had, she would have been immediately removed from the board.
And I am tired of that twerp Blagden saying Board members were not asked for at the Annual Meeting. Pam McVicar, president, very clearly asked if there were any nominations from the floor, so shut up about the Board not giving the audience a chance to put people on the Board. I heard someone ask Blagden if he wanted to be on the Board and he was shaking so bad he could hardly answer "no". We are all tired of it.
Tired of it. It is time for Stephen Blagden to move to another town. We have all we can stand, what is it, eleven years of this yawhoo? By the way, The Jingle Bell Ball always pays for itself, because the cost of the tickets per person cover the costs of the event. The Halloween Haunt and the Easter Egg Hunt's costs come out of the dues paid by the residents. We do not charge for those events, nor do we charge for Music in the Park which attracts about 2,000 people every Wednesday night. Those funds are carefully separated by our Treasurer and those funds are used only for that purpose. For Stephen Blagden to constantly lie and malign the Improvement Association is dastardly on his part. He never does anything positive for the community. He is never seen helping at any event. His entire life is getting up on TV at meetings and causing havoc with his lies. He has to be stopped. The town is sick of him and his best friend, George Edwardz aka Ickabod Crane. George LLamas, George Edwards, George Obnoxious. I wonder what his name is today? Why do people constantly change their names? Are they hiding their past in another town?

I would hope, whomever you are, that you know for certain who you are blasting and accusing. Naming names is not right unless you can prove without a doubt that you absolutely know the parties you are accusing of malicious acts and most importantly can prove your accusations.
That being said, obviously it boils down to this. YOU can say what you want, whether right or wrong in others eyes, but no one else can say anything that is different from your shaded opinion. To publicly defame two individuals who share their opinions OPENLY, and also barring them from opinion and inserting your own mean opinions, is the definition of a hypocrite. To get to the meat and potatos of your "rant", I would say that you have an awful lot of anger and disgruntledness in your being. For if the truth is in what you say, you would be far more eloquent and peaceful in your deliverance. There would be no need for visciousness. Instead, you make a vile point. Very non effective and one sided. Very pathetic actually.
La Habra Heights council and the Improvement Association have this uppity attitude that borders dictatorship behavior and rule. That is also a fact. Does that get your blood boiling? I hope so, because it is true and you have continued to prov that with your words in your nasty post void any details or proof of your point.
Hill Topper

Santa Monica, CA

#10 Aug 10, 2009
Clarification:

1. Music in the Park is not a revenue generator for the Improvement Association. Possibly for the vendors, who do not share their profits with the Association. It is extremely popular because it is in a lovely location and is free. In this time of recession, it is a very nice way to spend a summer evening.

2. Jingle Bell Ball is not a private, limited party. If one pays for their ticket they may attend the Ball. Obviously the above was written by Stephen Blagden who is like Johnny One note. He has never attended Music in the Park, never attended the Jingle Bell Ball, never attended the Halloween Haunt, never attends anything where he might be of help or assistance to the community. Just stands around and criticizes volunteers.
3. Mr. Blagden, you may attend the Ball, but you will have to pay. One knows you can't get a date, but people do come alone and have a good time. The fire department limits the number of people allowed in any room of the Club. One would have to contact Hacienda to see if that limit has ever been reached. Hacienda also has a date for reservations to close, in order that they may buy the food necessary for the event.

We could go on and on here, but New Fix is obviously very biased, uniformed and why bother with him? He is a destroyer of communities. A fund should be taken up to buy his house and get him out of town.
Disgusted

Glendale, CA

#11 Aug 10, 2009
Hill Topper: I hope you know for certain and can prove you are right, the two individuals you are outwardly blasting. You call them liar's. Very hateful. You misstate facts with your opinions. These two individuals OPENLY state their opinions in public on record and with their web sites. You simply accuse with vengence. You want to voice your opinion on Mr. Blagdens' web site and are angry because you cannot. You degrade Mr. Edwardz with childish name calling and personal attacks for having an opinion and a web site that you can make your absurd comments on and which you have done. You want what you want, yet you absolutely do not want them, or any others to have a voice contrary to yours. I would think that if you have something to say to Mr. Blagden about his web site or the contents therein, you would simply address him personally in form of a letter, or open letter at council meetings, or any other form of communication. That would take character though. Mostly, what you are totally blindsided on is the fact that both these individuals are entitled to do what they do, say what they say, have web sites and anything else they consider public concerns. Is that a crime? I think not. Are you disparaging them and casting aspersions on them? Absolutely. You are definately a thumbs down. Very bad press for the body of politics you are very badly attempting to protect. FYI...I am neither Mr. Blagden or Mr. Edwardz...am I a liar too?
Over the Top

AOL

#12 Aug 11, 2009
Here we go again. Attention residents of the community of La Habra Heights! Keep your mouths shut and don't say a word against any city official, city government, long time city cult clubs or city events unless your words are in subservience with the ruler's point of views.

Apparently 2 residents, George Edwardz and Steve Blagden create too much controversy (exposing culprits?) for these sheisters because they must retaliate behind websites with degradation and abuse of these 2 individuals.

What is the matter? The big boys and girls with the power in this city are feeling vulnerable? Might have to explain yourselves?

Why not just be polite, honest, up front and HELPFUL rather than your arrogant, ignorant abusive and abrasive rhetoric?

Why you don't? As someone said above; That would take character. Instead, abusive character is displayed.

There are more than 2 individuals as you so obnoxiously point fingers at who seriously distrust the regimes of control. That is called a democracy in case you forgot what country we live in. People are able to exercise their opinions in this country, rude or hateful, polite and informative, contrary or opposing, etc. etc. etc.
FRIGHTENED

Glendale, CA

#13 Aug 11, 2009
Is this Hill Topper person directly involved with LHHIA? If so, name calling and wanting to run someone out of town is not acceptable, nor respectable.

For this person to vehemently pronounce they want to run Edwards and Blagden out of town is extremely illegal and law breaking. It also is a civil rights violation. No need to discuss the seriousness of this terrible desire.

Is this the example the city, and the LHHIA want in their rooting section? Seems to me, just by the example of this, no one should want to be involved with the LHHIA based on this kind of hate crime...and that is what is displayed from Hill Topper. Please retract your ugly personal attacks.
Down the Tubes

AOL

#14 Sep 25, 2009
LINK: Water District Board Wines and Dines at Customer Expense

Nothing but the finest for our elite politicians and others in control. Fine chardonnay, best vodka, fine meals, name brand liquor (not bar stock), yep, the good ole boys!

Hope they used ice cubes in those drinks to support their expenses with the Water District budget. Did they take minutes for these outlandish meetings? Maybe they should have hired a live band while they were at it. That would top the ball of entertainment. Dancing anyone?
MOTS - When Does it end

Bell Gardens, CA

#15 Sep 25, 2009
How do these people think they can get away with spending our money on boos and fancy meals?

Jeff "Someone you can trust" Heintz, looks like a well rounded hack.

The previous story has him either incompetently or fraudulently (your choice) being Treasurer of the Improvement Association.

He couldn't follow laws for them that required release of requested reports.

Now he's feeding and drinking? off the public trough

Do you think he would have let us see these receipts if he had a say?
This Buds For You

Esperance, NY

#16 Sep 25, 2009
Thank the good Lord for the California Public Records Act of ?

Jeff, buddy, really, your a cop gone bad. Seen it a hundred times.
Anonymous2

Whittier, CA

#17 Sep 25, 2009
This news is going around like hotcakes. Everyone should cancel their membership with the LHHIA at once. For every annual membership fee, how much of it has gone to these dinner parties? Looks like a lot of waste and abuse.

And to think that a vast amount of influential people who are members of LHHIA, including the mayor, went out of their way to expose the mailer of the "3 amigos flyier", I can only say:

Those who live in glass houses....be careful what you do because it might come back at you. Sure looks like it has here.

The members of LHHIA should demand a reimbursement and an audit.

I think there is room for more than one publication of "Heights Life". No more monopoly on community news that does not pertain to over half of the community.
Bottoms Up

AOL

#18 Sep 25, 2009
This Buds For You wrote:
Thank the good Lord for the California Public Records Act of ?
Jeff, buddy, really, your a cop gone bad. Seen it a hundred times.
Just received an email on this with proof. Not good. Not good at all. BTW, Budweiser would not be good enough for them.
bacchanalia

Bell Gardens, CA

#19 Sep 26, 2009
The Brown Act requires any assembly of a majority of a Board to be noticed and allow an opportunity for public comment. There is no exception for bacchanalia.

The public should have been given an opportunity to comment, and observe the Board engorging themselves and imbibing at the expense of the unwashed public who might observe.

Can we add Brown Act violation to the laws that Jeffrey Heintz is unable to follow?
Back to the Future

Bell Gardens, CA

#20 Sep 26, 2009
This abuse of the public trust is a repeat of the last time the improvement association gang was in control.

The spouses and friends of members went on junkets and dined at public expense.

Take a look to see that this is not an exception, it is how this group views public "service":

http://www.lahabraheights.net/HLHTN/HTN-FinWa...

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