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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Point Dume Resident Proposes Solutions for PCH ‘Visual Blight’ Locations

    • City Council Members Are Told that the Permitting Process Is Best Way to Handle Growing Concern

BY BILL KOENEKER

Nearly a one-man crusader for public safety along the western portions of Pacific Coast Highway, J.D. Stevens returned to the Malibu City Council chambers Monday night with additional input on safety.
“Regarding the stretch of PCH between Heathercliff and Portshead, one way we can gain control of the situation (because clearly we don’t have control of the situation) is to create a permit process for the types of business that is being done there. So can we create a type of permit process for these types of businesses and work related activities?” Stevens asked the council.
The Point Dume resident noted the city was able to come up with a permitting process for marijuana dispensaries, so why not for sewage truck transfers, mobile concessions, advertising, trash truck transfers, car sales and “whatever turns up next.”
Stevens told council members he is familiar with the laws of mobile concessionaires because he used to operate one.
There is a rule that says you are not allowed to sell ocean side of the white line of PCH in the county without a special permit, according to Stevens.
“Another law says you are not allowed to be parked in the same spot for longer than 30 minutes. I received my special permit from LA county, but it took me three years of waiting until I was given just an opportunity to bid on getting the permit. I did not like the rules, and they cost me a lot of money, but I followed the rules. So the point is, I don’t think we are as powerless as we might think,” Stevens added.
Mayor Lou La Monte thanked Stevens not only for his participation, but that he offered solutions to problems stated.
Without comment from the public or council members, the city council gave the go-ahead to approve a contract with Sully-Miller Contracting Company as the apparent low bidder in the amount of $652,716 for the construction project for a street maintenance program for fiscal year 2012/13.
 The staff report noted the city may have gotten a financial break on its street maintenance program after a contractor bid low enough to offer nearly $200,000 more than what was budgeted to use to pave more streets.
According to public works officials, the current plan provides maintenance and rehabilitation work for the next 15 years with a yearly budget of $600.000 per year with the exception of the current fiscal year having a budget of $975.000.
For 2012-2013, the entire length of Malibu Road is to be resurfaced with rubberized asphalt concrete.
The resurfacing includes installation of 14 speed bumps along Malibu Road. The bumps are designed to reduce speeds, improve safety and have been requested by the Malibu Road Homeowners Association, according to public works officials.
The road resurfacing plan calls for Morning View Drive from Philip Avenue to Cabrillo Street, Busch Drive from Calpine to Cuthbert Road, Busch Drive from Harvester Road to Rainsford Place and Winter Mesa Drive from Pacific Coast Highway to cul-de-sac are to receive a slurry seal treatment.
Construction is scheduled to begin by the end of October 2012 and is expected to be completed by December 2012.
“Since the lowest bid was substantially  lower than the total project budget of $975,000, staff is currently looking into increasing the project scope of work to potentially include resurfacing portions of Latigo Canyon Road or Corral Canyon Road and applying a slurry seal treatment to portions of Philip Avenue, Calpine Drive and Cuthbert Road as identified in the pavement plan,” the staff report goes on to state.
The city council was expected to discuss a facility use agreement with Malibu AYSO, but unanimously approved the agreement without comment.
No AYSO officials, nor any other member of the public commented on the proposal.
However, Councilmember Joan House said she wanted to be informed about the fee schedule in general.
She said there did not seem to be any fees charged for events at Trancas Park. “We have a $3.5 million park, yet we are not making enough use of it,” she said.
Councilmember John Sibert said, when the park was before the council for approval, part of the issue was neighbors wanted to keep organized activities out of the park. “That is how it was conditioned,” he said.
City Manager Jim Thorsen said parks and recreation staff members could bring a full report to House’s subcommittee.
A staff report revealed each year the city spends $12,000 to $15,000 on turf maintenance for the fields at Malibu Bluffs Park, where soccer is played.
To date, AYSO has not been required to financially compensate the city for field use or maintenance.
By approving the agreement, AYSO is being asked to share the annual costs associated with the maintenance and also pay fees for field use outside of its ‘regular season’ between months of February and July. Staff will meet annually with AYSO representatives to determine the level of financial support the city will receive,” wrote Recreation Manager Amy Crittenden, of the Parks and Recreation Department, in a staff report.
AYSO, over the years, has had priority usage during its regular season for practices, clinics, games and board meetings. The city also allows AYSO to place a storage container at Bluffs Park to store equipment and supplies, according to city officials.
“This understanding has proved beneficial to the city over the years because AYSO has organized youth soccer programs for the community that the city would have had to otherwise  provide at a substantial cost to the community that the city would have had to otherwise provide at a substantial cost to participants and the city,” the staff report states.
Malibu AYSO is the largest local youth sports group serving 850 to 900 participants between the ages of five to 17 each year, according to city officials.
The standard facility use permit does not cover items such as compensation for field maintenance, fee waivers, subletting unused field space, on-site storage and outside ‘club’ team use, according to municipal officials.
The Parks and Recreation Commission reviewed the proposed agreement at its meeting in August and recommended the city council approve the agreement.

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