Montebello passes budget without rancor this year

Jun 27, 2013 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Whittier Daily News

A year ago, the City Council needed a long, raucous meeting to approve a budget.

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21 - 40 of 198 Comments Last updated Jan 23, 2014

Since: Jun 13

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#22
Jun 30, 2013
 
Montebello everyman wrote:
How come no one noticed the big flip flop by Frank Gomez????????
I pulled out his flyer he gave to me when he came to the door and asked me to vote for him. it said
I am running for the Montebello City Council because our city needs leaders who put our people first. What do I stand for? No new taxes! No sole-source contracts! No Montebello Hills development!
Frank A. Gomez, Ph.D.
Whats he doing now? Screaming for higher taxes, voting for solesource contracts, and schilling for that stupid condo project that no one wants!!!!!!!!!
Now I see what 'Doctor' Gomez stands for ---- whatever anyone with money wants!!!!!
I guess brains dont garantee honesty.
I saw that too and wondered why hes complaining about the other council people.

He was biching about no unanimity all the time he was mayor, and now that hes got it, he still wants to complain the council.

Plus the 180 he did on those three issues u talk about, and it only means one thing, like Ricky Ricardo would say **Franky, you got some 'splainin to do

What it comes down to is that we just cant trust this guy.
Wonder Why

United States

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#23
Jul 1, 2013
 
Been reading wrote:
Interesting blog. After reading through the type, find cant believe it quite believable. 42 yr...sounds bent on forcing their will on having no development in the hills all at the expense of the community who appear to need an influx of money to support their services. His/her rational is almost psychotic in not wanting anything built up there. I give him/her kudos for their resolve but perhaps they should think big picture here and for the better of the people of Montebello and the San Gabriel Valley.
I wonder why you did not seem to notice all the information in the posts which make it clear that this proposed dense residential condominium project WILL NOT help the city economically. The city needs retail/commercial development in order to have increased revenues. Run down areas of many cities, downtown Pasadena and Los Angeles for example, have turned into vibrant, revenue providing economic zones. That requires some vision and economic planning. We need to focus on Whittier Blvd. which is not in any kind of the bad state much of downtown L.A. used to be.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#24
Jul 1, 2013
 
Been reading wrote:
Interesting blog. After reading through the type, find cant believe it quite believable. 42 yr...sounds bent on forcing their will on having no development in the hills all at the expense of the community who appear to need an influx of money to support their services. His/her rational is almost psychotic in not wanting anything built up there. I give him/her kudos for their resolve but perhaps they should think big picture here and for the better of the people of Montebello and the San Gabriel Valley.
I am always heartened when the discussion turns from the message to the messenger. That usually means that the message is so powerful and uncontestable that the attackers are forced to go after the messenger instead.

Of course, virtually all of the above assertions are objectively verifiably false. Any reading of my publicly available 2700 or so postings will find that I am not against any development in the Hills, have given many, many alternative ways for the city to raise more money (some of which were repeated at the 6/25 city council meeting, but facts have little impact on supporters of the condo project), have no need to impose my will on anyone as the condo proposal is nearly universally despised by residents, and have always evaluated this dangerous, costly to the city, and unwise proposal in the context of the needs of the region.

I am glad that proponents who have demonstrated a nearly complete lack of knowledge about this proposed condo project, and are thus unable to rationally contest any of the facts, supplied by the proposed developer, and inconveniently brought into the light by those of us who can think for themselves, can be seen by others as unable to rationally discuss the dangers this project poses.

The reason that I am glad is that this same tactic of ignoring the facts and problems and instead attacking the messenger was used by the supporters of Rosie Vasquez, Kathy Salazar, and Robert Urteaga during the recall. I expect this means that the Condomania will meet a similar fate as the gang of three.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#25
Jul 1, 2013
 
Will any of the supporters of the project use objectively verifiable facts to respond to the developer's legally binding statements about the proposed project?

I'm waiting, but not holding my breath.
angry people

Los Angeles, CA

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#26
Jul 1, 2013
 
Sounds like there are too many angry people on this blog with too much time on their hands. Perhaps they should get a job. Heh, that's an idea and would help the city too.
about time

Citrus Heights, CA

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#27
Jul 2, 2013
 
42 yr North Mtb resident wrote:
<quoted text>I don't know anyone who is concentrating just on environmental aspects of the proposed condo project, so if you find someone like that, feel free to stop listening to them.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN lack of any fiscal analysis based on objective,independent data for the proposed development 6 YEARS after the proposal was made.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN annual budget deficit the proposed condo project would cause the city.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN, virtually limitless liability the city would assume from the developer from the health (a laundry list of carcinogenic chemical emissions) and location (on top of 5 known earthquake faults) dangers of building on top of an ACTIVE oilfield.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN, unmitigable (unfixable) traffic congestion this proposed project could cause.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN decline in single family home values (and the concurrent property tax revenue decline) that ALWAYS happen when condos are built next to single family homes in LA County.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN health danger to current residents from 10 years of grading 6 million cubic yards of contaminated dirt.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN increase in fire danger the city's and county's fire reports cite for any residential development in the Hills.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN incomplete, incorrect, unsubstantiated, and unaddressed portions of the MHSP and DEIR, especially those cited in the 1500+ pages of comments submitted more than 3 years ago by governmental agencies, non-profit groups, city residents, and concerned citizens.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN water problems this city faces, and am not willing to give any of our dwindling allotment of water to enrich ONLY real estate speculators, out of town developers, and Texas oil companies.

Then there are those dangers and problems that only have an 80 - 90% probability of happening. For now, let's just talk about those that are CERTAIN from this condo proposal.

Perhaps the project supporters might try to address them? Just once? We 99 percenters are always interested in the opinions of the 1 percenters.
Traffic and home values!

The VERY FIRST legitimate argument I have heard.

Good show
Theolona Ranger

Lynwood, CA

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#28
Jul 6, 2013
 
Key issue that has not been raised recently is the lack of funding for the new General Plan.
It would seem essential that all new large development would benefit from a new plan instead of the outdated plan from almost 30 years ago.
New general plan now
new general plan before consideration of any hillside development- housing or retail commercial

The place for retail- commercial is in South Montebello,
Beverly and Whittier
Maybe the golf course
Time for some long range planning
Theolona Ranger

Lynwood, CA

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#29
Jul 6, 2013
 
Comment on statements made at a recent council meeting about home sales in the hills.
The LAN is owned by the Montebello Land Company
NO Land is to be sold- just condo "air rights"
PXP will have "superior rights" and can access their underlying asset- the oilfield- for almost any reason any place any time
buying a condo in the hills is like buying a trailer in a trailer park
even if it's a detached deluxe townhome- it's still a condo as the land is held "in condominium"
who runs the "homeowners association",
what are the terms and conditions
theolona ranger

Lynwood, CA

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#30
Jul 7, 2013
 
still no balanced budget?
Are their budget items to pay the Hilton management?($5 million
Budget item to fund retired employee health care ($12 million)
Underfunded retirement plans
emergency fund
general plan funding
reserves being raided for continuing expenses
planning and community development understaffed

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#31
Jul 7, 2013
 
Anyone who knows about PXP's oil operations in California knows that when homes are built BELOW and on the same level as PXP OPERATING oil wells, there is BIG trouble.

The Inglewood oil field is a good example of PXP's (lack of?) corporate oil field problem policies to adjacent residents.

Montebello is NOW in a completely different position because ALL of the operating oil wells near current residences are ABOVE the homes, allowing the dangerous gasses to rise, spread out, and dissipate unnoticed.

If the proposed condo project were to be built, it would be like a second Inglewood oil field problem, and the new Mtb residents wouldn't be the poor people of Inglewood, but allegedly upscale, affluent people with families and retired people. To me, these are the type of people that would not stand for noxious, unhealthy gasses coming up under their $700,000 condos to endanger themselves and their families.

Can you say 'Class Action Lawsuit against the City of Montebello?'

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#33
Jul 7, 2013
 
Wonder Why wrote:
<quoted text>I wonder why you did not seem to notice all the information in the posts which make it clear that this proposed dense residential condominium project WILL NOT help the city economically. The city needs retail/commercial development in order to have increased revenues. Run down areas of many cities, downtown Pasadena and Los Angeles for example, have turned into vibrant, revenue providing economic zones. That requires some vision and economic planning. We need to focus on Whittier Blvd. which is not in any kind of the bad state much of downtown L.A. used to be.
Thank you for your cogent, coherent, applicable post.

Many of us used to give specific citations, links, exact quotes because we thought that the awful facts put out by the developer would cause people to see what a fiscally speculative, physically dangerous and objectively unhealthy project this is. Then we found out that information of the dangers to Montebello residents matter not to most of them and stopped spending the time giving exact citations backing up all our arguements.

Like the 'dog and pony show' of supporters who occasionally appear at city council meetings, the development supporters are composed, nearly 100% of the time, of recipients of the developer's baksheesh, PXP and Cook-Hill employees and contractors, out-of-town business interests, real estate speculators, and those who believe the unverified, unsubstantiated single-source whispers of money to come.

Conversely, who are those who speak out at city council meetings against the proposal? Mainly Montebello residents who have taken the time to actually READ the developer's proposal, talked to the developer's employees and executives (including Lod Cook) about the project, and read the (mainly) negative and (rarely) positive comments to the Scoping Meetings and DEIR from governmental agencies, public interest groups, technical experts and ordinary people.

All of the Montebello Chamber of Commerce chairmen who I have asked say that they WILL NOT consider the physical and health dangers this proposal entails. They have said that they are ONLY interested in the possible financial benefits to business.

None of the above care one whit about fiscal or health dangers to Montebello residents if they can get some money out of the scheme. I cite as examples the above posters who will wiggle and squirm in every which way to avoid the facts against the proposed development.

Thankfully, some of those here are willing to discuss the big picture AND the specific dangers of the proposed condo project, and I thank them for keeping the discussion on a factual, applicable, and appropriate level.
Theolona Ranger

Lynwood, CA

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#34
Jul 7, 2013
 
I thought that the States Department of Oil and Gas was on record opposing development over active oilfields???
Montebello needs a Hillside development code and a community services district (CSD)to supervise and regulate the oilfield.
Lack of funding of the planning department hurts all development efforts in Montebello
The Baldwin Hills residents have a model CSD.
Issues like fire safety and fracking, slopes, safe routes to schools, etc.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#35
Jul 8, 2013
 
Theolona Ranger wrote:
I thought that the States Department of Oil and Gas was on record opposing development over active oilfields???
Montebello needs a Hillside development code and a community services district (CSD)to supervise and regulate the oilfield.
Lack of funding of the planning department hurts all development efforts in Montebello
The Baldwin Hills residents have a model CSD.
Issues like fire safety and fracking, slopes, safe routes to schools, etc.
Doggr does recommend against it, among other governmental agencies and non-profits.
Up or down vote

Montebello, CA

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#36
Jul 8, 2013
 
Theolona ranger sounds like a rational person. 42 yr North needs to listen to him and look at the big picture instead of always writing about the hills project. Council is irrelevant as people like Molinari, Barajas and Cortez, not to mention past members like Vasquez, Salazar, Payan, Glasman, only care about politics and their bankrolls. City has great long term indebtedness and majority council is mismanaging present funds hurting city from achieving its potential.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#37
Jul 8, 2013
 
I know the supporters of the condos know little about the project and its lack of any objective financial analysis, but now the supporters show their lack of knowledge about the city council meetings and what has been occuring there for the last 6 or so years.

Supporters of saving the Hills have been advocating all of Theolona's ideas for that long, and raised them several times in the last two months, as they regularly do.

Some of us live in this city and pay attention to what is happening here, and want it to be a better city, not dragged down into a well of debt to enrich some Texas oilmen, Newport Beach developers, and local real estate speculators.
Ridiculous

Montebello, CA

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#38
Jul 8, 2013
 
42 yr North Mtb resident is sounding more ridiculous (self-centered and narcissistic are better words) the more I read this blog. He wants to come off as if he is the expert on development, the council, what others think (local supporters of the hills as well as, he speculates, Texas oilmen, developers, and real estate speculators), as well as all knowledge base of what has been happening in the city the past half decade plus. Get real 42 yr North Mtb resident, your story is stale, the only ones listening are yourself, and the few on this blog. LOL

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

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#39
Jul 8, 2013
 
As supporters of the proposed are entranced with ignoring the facts about the proposed project, ignoring the Montebello City Council, and making unsupported personal attacks, I will try to being the debate back to the applicable issue: the financial and physical dangers this unique proposal poses.

To repost:

Some facts submitted in the MHSP, FIA and DEIR of the proposed development:

1. All the 'dwelling units' fit the definition of 'condominium', mainly because NO prospective homeowners will EVER own their land.

2. AT LEAST 100 oil and gas wells would continue to operate under the homes, with another about 100 available to be restarted if necessary, and another 100 completely abandoned.

3. The proposed development would be completely surrounded by highly flammable coastal sage plants in an untended preserve.

4. There is no disaster, fire, or evacuation plan for the proposed development.

5. The plan envisions 10 years of grading, dust, and construction with 6 million cubic yards of polluted dirt being moved.

6. Much of the economic benefit to the city relied on redevelopment area tax breaks and financing, none of which exist any more.

7. The change to the current visual profile of the Hills is changed to such an extent that it is listed in the 'unmitigated effects' part of the DEIR.

8. The parkland envisioned in this proposal is about 1/3 what is required under the current General Plan, and about 1/8 of modern recommendations.

__________

I don't know anyone who is concentrating just on environmental aspects of the proposed condo project, so if you find someone like that, feel free to stop listening to them.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN lack of any fiscal analysis based on objective,independent data for the proposed development 6 YEARS after the proposal was made.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN annual budget deficit the proposed condo project would cause the city.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN, virtually limitless liability the city would assume from the developer from the health (a laundry list of carcinogenic chemical emissions) and location (on top of 5 known earthquake faults) dangers of building on top of an ACTIVE oilfield.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN, unmitigable (unfixable) traffic congestion this proposed project could cause.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN decline in single family home values (and the concurrent property tax revenue decline) that ALWAYS happen when condos are built next to single family homes in LA County.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN health danger to current residents from 10 years of grading 6 million cubic yards of contaminated dirt.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN increase in fire danger the city's and county's fire reports cite for any residential development in the Hills.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN incomplete, incorrect, unsubstantiated, and unaddressed portions of the MHSP and DEIR, especially those cited in the 1500+ pages of comments submitted more than 3 years ago by governmental agencies, non-profit groups, city residents, and concerned citizens.

I am concentrating on the CERTAIN water problems this city faces, and am not willing to give any of our dwindling allotment of water to enrich ONLY real estate speculators, out of town developers, and Texas oil companies.
Trash Talk

Los Angeles, CA

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#40
Jul 9, 2013
 
Read you points 42
comments
1 Land would be held by (currently) Montebello Land Company- not the condo "owners"

2 the number of abandoned wells is unknown. Recall the surprise of unknown abandoned wells at the Taylor Ranch- put that project into a tailspin from which it has not recovered.

4 There is no gravity water supply to the development. There is an inadequate water storage and supply inadequate for firefighting.
There is no backup
Do not rush to approve this disaster waiting to happen.

5 If the hills are graded are they still hills?
The City needs the new General Plan and a Hillside development code as is found in LA County and other responsible cities.

6 All the profits go to Newport Beach and Texas in any case. I fail to understand what the local Relators think they will get from the project.
good points

Los Angeles, CA

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#41
Jul 9, 2013
 
Trash Talk wrote:
Read you points 42
comments
1 Land would be held by (currently) Montebello Land Company- not the condo "owners"

2 the number of abandoned wells is unknown. Recall the surprise of unknown abandoned wells at the Taylor Ranch- put that project into a tailspin from which it has not recovered.

4 There is no gravity water supply to the development. There is an inadequate water storage and supply inadequate for firefighting.
There is no backup
Do not rush to approve this disaster waiting to happen.

5 If the hills are graded are they still hills?
The City needs the new General Plan and a Hillside development code as is found in LA County and other responsible cities.

6 All the profits go to Newport Beach and Texas in any case. I fail to understand what the local Relators think they will get from the project.
Only # 6, valid point but the permit fees go to Montebello.

If you or anyone in the Save the hills club own a Toyota, Honda, Kia, Mazda or any other import car,

If its made in America that doesn't mean all the money isn't going back to an American company, keep sending your money to Japan.

Anyway, little rant but its the same thing.
good points

Los Angeles, CA

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#42
Jul 9, 2013
 
Ridiculous wrote:
42 yr North Mtb resident is sounding more ridiculous (self-centered and narcissistic are better words) the more I read this blog. He wants to come off as if he is the expert on development, the council, what others think (local supporters of the hills as well as, he speculates, Texas oilmen, developers, and real estate speculators), as well as all knowledge base of what has been happening in the city the past half decade plus. Get real 42 yr North Mtb resident, your story is stale, the only ones listening are yourself, and the few on this blog. LOL
No need for personal attacks.

Bottom line IF it solves the financial problems the city has, just do it.

Oil, Texas, out of town..... Blah blah blah.

If it gets the city out of debt and puts money in the bank, do it

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