Founded in 1973, the Pacific Palisades Community Council has as its purpose:

  • To be a forum for the discussion of community issues.
  • To be an advocate for the Pacific Palisades to government and private agencies upon those issues where there is broad community agreement.
  • To assist other organizations in the Pacific Palisades which request help in accomplishing their objectives or purposes, and which the Council chooses to support.
A  "HEADS UP"  FROM THE CHAIR
We're excited to announce that the PPCC Spring Newsletter will be arriving at every home and business in the Palisades in early April. In this issue there are several community alerts: Illegal boarding homes moving into our neighborhoods; DWP rate increases; and Lack of enforcement for Building and Safety violations. To fight back, PPCC has been working night and day to analyze the various ordinances and to support those that will safe guard our homes, our pocketbooks and our town.
Below is a link to an electronic copy of the Newsletter for you to review.
More in depth information:
Since each of these are complex topics here are some in depth articles that will give you more information.
1. Community Care Facilities Ordinance By Jennifer Malaret, Area 3 Representative, PPCC
Are you interested in ensuring that the home next to yours won’t be turned into a boarding house? Although boarding homes are illegal in our R1 and R2 zones and a new big business, (the sober living industry) has taken up occupancy in Pacific Palisades. Unlike small groups of adults living together with a vested interest the stable character of their neighborhoods, illegal boarding houses do not keep control over their transient tenants, cause nuisances and make big money in the process. On April 5, 2011, the PPCC received great news in our fight to preserve the residential character of R1 and R2 zones in Pacific Palisades. Following an 80% majority vote of support by the City Planning Commission, the Planning Land Use Management Committee voted UNANIMOUSLY to recommend approval of the Community Care Facilities (“CCF”) ordinance. That means the ordinance now moves on to a public hearing and vote by entire City Council – including our very own Bill Rosendahl. The PPCC remains committed towards the passage of this Ordinance! Read more at - CCF In Depth.

2. Code Violators Would Be Ticketed Through the Administrative Code Enforcement Ordinance By Haldis Toppel, Vice Chair, PPCC Los Angeles is failing to enforce violations of the Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC) which includes among others, Building & Safety, Zoning, and sign violations. Non-compliance is considered to be “the cost of doing business” by some home owners or contractors who operate without permits or in violation of permits and deliberately ignore citations issues by the responsible Departments. The Administrative Code Enforcement Ordinance (ACE) could help solve this problem.
Read more at - ACE In Depth.

3. What's Behind the DWP Rate Increases. Here's one opinion by Jack Humphreville who writes LA Watchdog for CityWatch. He is the President of the DWP Advocacy Committee and the Ratepayer Advocate for the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council.
Read more at - City Watch

PayPal: We now have PayPal on our website (below) to make it easier for you to donate. We could really use your support. PPCC is made up of all volunteers. We receive no money from the City. We are a 501-C3 non-profit that depends on donations from residents. Your donations are tax deductible. You'll also find an envelope inside the newsletter if you prefer to send in a check.
New Blogspot Coming Soon: In May we'll be unveiling the new PPCC blogspot thanks to a grant from the Junior Women's Club. You'll be able to sign up for email alerts on the PPCC topics that most interest you. You'll be able to take surveys to voice your opinion about the various issues affecting the Palisades. E Alerts will also be sent out to residents who've signed up in case of an emergency like the Tsunami warning in March. Look for it soon.
And always feel free to e mail me your questions at Pacpalicc@aol.com
Janet Turner, Chair

Recent community issues before the Council include the proposed cell phone towers in the Riviera, realignment of Vons driveway at Sunset and Castellammare, proposed Palisades "Gateway" signs, traffic impact of the closure of the Califonia Incline, concerns about police response time, and endorsement of plans to establish a police substation at the Rec Center. For more about your Council's activities see our newsletter at Spring 2011 Newsletter.

You are encouraged to attend the Council's Board meetings and make your voice heard in our discussion of community issues. The meetings are held in the meeting room of the Palisades Branch Library, 861 Alma Real and start promptly at 7:00 p.m. To view the agenda for the next Board meeting see - Upcoming Agenda.

And you are invited to bring your community concerns to the attention of individual members of the Council's Board. The name, title, and a means to contact each member may be found on the Board Members page of this site.

The Council may also be reached -

  • By U.S. Mail - Post Office Box 1131, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
  • By e-mail - PacPaliCC@aol.com
  • By Fax - 310-573-9165
  • By Phone - 310-496-9896

And you may visit the Community Council on FACEBOOK.
Just click on - "Facebook"

YOUR COMMUNITY COUNCIL DEPENDS ON COMMUNITY SUPPORT
The Council receives no public funding and is entirely dependent on contributions from the Palisades community. A family membership is but $25.00 a year which may be mailed to PO Box 1131, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272 or if you prefer you may contribute via the PayPal link below.
 

To learn more about your Pacific Palisades Community Council, its Board Members, Bylaws, Awards for Community Service, Calendar of Events, and the Minutes of Board Meetings, see the links at the top of this page.


            Please refer comments concerning this site to - PacPalTed@earthlink.net



COMMUNITY CARE FACILITIES ORDINANCE
 
[The following excerpts are from oral comments made at the public board meeting of the Pacific Palisades Community Council on September 23, 2010 and are provided on this website inclusive of the disclaimer below].

For the past three years, the Planning Department (in response to a directive from the Los Angeles City Council) has been working to respond to the concerns of homeowners regarding transient residential uses in single-family neighborhoods. These concerns include high occupancies, secondhand smoke, aggressive behavior, foul language, traffic congestion, parking problems, excessive noise and police activity. In areas of Los Angeles such as Mar Vista and Venice, there are concentrations of multiple group homes operating on a single block. Here in Pacific Palisades, we now have three (3) sober living facilities operating out of single-family homes in R-1 zoned neighborhoods. Because these facilities are unregulated and unlicensed, it is impossible to determine the number of operators, number of locations, quality of operators, approved fire clearances, local building use permits, possibility for on-site inspection and review, and compliance with basic health and safety standards.

Furthermore, under current zoning laws, group parolee homes can currently operate as a “family” in any single-family area within Pacific Palisades – because they are not restricted, as are other correctional institutions, they can also open in R1 and R2 zones without notice, licensing or permits. To the owner of a single-family home with small children, this may sound unbelievable. However, the Fair Housing Act protects persons with special needs, including recovering drug and alcohol addicts, from being discriminated against because they are classified as disabled by federal law.

Based on federal law, the state of California has enacted a complicated series of laws and regulations to support the placement of handicapped persons into single-family residential neighborhoods. On a municipal level, many of California’s cities have been grappling with this issue including Murietta, Riverside, Newport Beach and Lompoc. Several years of litigation ensued over the Newport Beach ordinance and recent court rulings have found in favor of the City of Newport Beach on several important constitutional issues.

So, when the City Planning Department drafted the proposed ordinance to help reign in problems associated with illegal and unlicensed group living homes, planning staff considered provisions written by Newport Beach which have already withstood successful legal challenge and the city of Lompoc’s regulatory scheme that the State Attorney General has upheld. By strengthening certain language and definitions, the City believes that Building and Safety can work closely with the City Attorney’s office to prosecute cases against illegal uses. It is worthy for the Palisades homeowner to note that because of perceived ambiguities in the existing zoning code, there is essentially no current enforcement today with respect to any problems associated with transient occupancy in residential neighborhoods.

What does the proposed ordinance do and how does it help residents of the Palisades ensure that the stable character of their neighborhood will remain the same? In areas zoned low-density residential, the ordinance seeks to provide an effective enforcement mechanism to prohibit transient uses by creating “bright line” definitions between boarding/rooming houses, on the one hand, and family (as a “single housekeeping unit in one dwelling unit”) on the other. It is important to note that the ordinance does not prohibit community care facilities in multi-family (R3 and above) or commercial zones. Likewise, the Ordinance does not regulate homes that are licensed and regulated by the State Department of Social Services (such as housing for the physically disabled and elderly).

Therefore, as applicable to the Palisades and other areas of LA, there are four possible community care, i.e., “sober living” scenarios:

State Licensed Facilities, Serving Less than 6 Residents – cannot be covered by the proposed Ordinance. As mandated by state law, these facilities can operate in any zone that permits single-family homes.

Unlicensed Facilities, Serving Less than 6 Residents - residents must be members of the same household. Common areas and chores must be shared and there cannot be single locked doors, hotplates, mini-refrigerators, etc. If a single housekeeping unit takes in a boarder, that person must become a household member. No more than one oral or written lease can be in operation. If there are multiple lease agreements, then the use is classified as a boarding/rooming house and becomes subject to abatement proceedings.

State Licensed Facilities, Serving More than Seven Residents – are allowed to operate as “Public Benefit” provided the operator can meet performance tests which include limitations on noise, lighting, maintenance of residential character, etc.

Unlicensed Facilities, Serving More than 7 Residents – see subparagraph (b) above.

What doesn’t the proposed ordinance do? The PPCC Board voted and recommended to the City of Los Angeles that the following additional protections be included in the ordinance: a distance requirement (community care facilities must be located 300 feet apart which is the state law requirement); a sensitive use separation (community care facilities must be 2,000 feet from schools, churches, temples and other places of religious worship); notice provisions (notice and public hearings shall be required before the city can make a “public benefits” determination); and that no all community care facilities that are currently in existence but operating unlicensed or illegally licensed must comply with the requirements of the enacted ordinance.

Additional Resources:

http://cd11.lacity.org/

http://www.palisadespost.com/news/content.php?id=6445

http://www.palisadespost.com/news/content.php?id=6096

http://www.dailynews.com/breakingnews/ci_17356001

http://laist.com/2011/03/28/sober_living_houses.php

http://cityplanning.lacity.org/Code_Studies/Housing/ComCareFacilitySupRpt.pdf

http://citywatchla.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4739

www.LACoalition4Neighborhoods.org

Disclaimer:

This website is provided as a resource for general information for the public. The information on these web pages is not intended to serve as legal advice or as a guarantee, warranty or prediction regarding the outcome of any particular legal matter. The information on these web pages is subject to change at any time and may be incomplete and/or may contain errors. You should not rely on these pages without first consulting a qualified attorney.

The website contains links to third-party web sites. These links are provided solely for convenience and reference. The Pacific Palisades Community Council is not responsible for, nor does it guarantee, control or monitor, the accuracy of any information on linked third-party sites. Links provided on this website should not be construed as a recommendation or endorsement by the Pacific Palisades Community Council of any product, service or information offered on the linked site.

In no event shall The Pacific Palisades Community Council, board members, officers, or agents be liable for any damages whatsoever, including, without limitation, incidental and consequential damages, lost profits or damages resulting from the availability, use, reliance on or inability to use this website, or lost data or business interruption arising from use of or inability to use this website, whether based on warranty, contract, tort or any other legal theory, and whether or not the Pacific Palisades Community Council is advised of the possibility of such damages.



ADMINISTRATIVE CODE ENFORCEMENT
 
If a citation by a Department such as Building and Safety is ignored, the Department simply issues another citation, the consequences are minor. Because a violation of the LAMC is a mandatory criminal offense, the City Attorney refuses to handle “minor” cases unless they are grievous violations. This encourages more violations and the City Departments and neighboring residents are frustrated. Such continued code violations are becoming a public safety issue when construction or remodel is not done to code and without the proper inspection to assure the safety of the present or future property owner or the public.

In an effort to continue the necessary enforcement efforts of the LAMC during the financially strapped budget times, the City has drafted two ordinances.

The first ordinance aims at cost recovery for re-inspections which become necessary when a violation has been found during the initial inspection process and a notice to comply has been issued to the property owner. This ordinance does not address penalties or fees for the actual violation itself. The initial inspection continues to be free of charge and is funded by the taxpayer via the General Fund. This ordinance has been passed and is designed to relief the taxpayer from funding these re-inspections necessitated by the violations. The fee of $375 per re-inspection is placed back into the General Fund.

The second ordinance drafted by the City Attorney addresses penalties and fees assessed for the actual violation itself with an escalating fee structure for the severity and size of the violation and for each day a violation continues to remain unresolved. This ordinance is currently under review.

The ordinance is designed to:

• assess sufficiently high penalties to be truly a deterrent to potential violators,

• raise enough money from the penalties to cover the cost of enforcement by the involved City Departments as well as the City Attorney,

• provide an alternative to the mandatory criminal prosecution of LAMC violations by adding the Administrative Citation Enforcement (ACE) program. ACE allows the issuance of citations “in real-time” for violations by the inspectors in the field similar to a traffic ticket and it “decriminalizes” such violations,

provide the option for continued criminal proceedings for major or grievous violations.

The penalties collected under this ordinance will not flow into the General Fund but into a separate fund designed to be used only for enforcement efforts.

Concerns have been voiced that the ease of issuing violation via the ACE process may cause overzealous inspectors to abuse the process and create costly and time consuming appeals processes for the innocent.

Pacific Palisades Community Council has voted to support ACE in principle, but will continue to analyze the ordinance and make recommendations to prevent any unintended consequences.


R e t u r n