Willingness to Contribute
To read the April 15 edition of the Post, one would assume that all Palisadians are unanimous in rejecting Councilmember Mike Bonin’s attempts to address the homeless problem.
That is not the case.
Homelessness is one of the most intractable problems we face as a society. With multiple sources, including extreme income inequality, mental illness and widespread opiate addiction, it has defied solutions over decades.
We are privileged to live in the Palisades. With that opportunity should come a willingness to contribute to the solution of major problems rather than vituperative rejection of alternatives that may impinge upon our community.
Rather than resting on our privilege, get out and do something constructive:
– Volunteer for or contribute to Pacific Palisades Task Force on Homelessness
– Work with Councilmember Bonin and other leaders to make constructive recommendations on how to address the crisis
– Find another nonprofit dedicated to addressing social issues such as food insecurity or the national disgrace of racism
With all of this, stop with the “Not in My Back Yard.” It does nothing to solve the underlying problems.
James W. Osterholt
Dear Fellow Palisadians,
On behalf of the Palisades Americanism Parade Association (PAPA) board, I’m excited to announce that we’re planning for a July 4th Hometown Parade and Fireworks Show. Subject to approvals from state and local governmental agencies, we hope to bring you the “Best Day in the Palisades” once again this year.
This year’s scaled-back parade will be filled with mostly local entries, cherished favorites and acknowledgments of our Palisades service organizations. In the evening, we’ll celebrate the independence of our nation with fireworks, and the beginning of a return to normal community life after more than a year of limiting our activities. Consistent with health and safety protocols, we’ll do all this in an environment that promotes social distancing and face masks for all spectators.
PAPA was founded 73 years ago by Pacific Palisades residents and business owners wishing to celebrate the independence of our country each July 4th. We’ve been graciously supported over those years by the community and the Palisades’ own American Legion Post 283.
You may show your support and make a tax-deductible donation now at Palisades4th.com.
Although the picture is not clear today, the Palisades Will Rogers 5K & 10K Run continues to explore the possibility of hosting the 44th annual run. I’ve been asked to convey to you that The Run Foundation is also in communication with governmental agencies and hopes to bring you this July 4th morning tradition in 2021. Information will continue to be shared as more becomes known.
After a difficult year of life-changing disruptions and loss, we hope that you’ll join us in making this July 4th an important step of moving forward.
In the meantime, please continue to stay safe.
Writing in my individual capacity: A 2 Cents contributor in the April 8 edition questioned how a three-story house under construction in the 500 block of Via De La Paz could be allowed. I don’t know the address of the referenced home, but I do know that a partial three-story home is under construction at 514 Via De La Paz.
Information publicly available on the Planning Department “ZIMAS” website (zimas.lacity.org) shows that this property is actually not in Tract 3900. As such, the house appears to have been subject to the 45-foot height limit applicable to non-hillside Coastal zone properties, as well as the so-called “CATEX” exemption (exempting the project from a Coastal Development Permit requirement).
(Note: For historical reasons, there are some pocket areas within the overall boundaries of Tract 3900 which have different tract numbers; it’s my understanding that owner/developers in some cases voluntarily submit to Civic League review and scale their projects to Civic League guidelines; this was apparently not the case with the home at 514 Via De La Paz.)
Following concerns raised by neighbors over a 45-foot-high home under construction in the lower Marquez neighborhood (also not in Tract 9300), the PPCC Land Use Committee (LUC) has been researching issues related to residential zoning in the Palisades’ non-hillside Coastal zone areas. The LUC’s Interim Report with more information about these issues can be read at: pacpalicc.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/PPCC-Land-Use-Committee-Interim-Report.pdf.
As reported at public PPCC board meetings, the committee’s work is ongoing. It expects to be able to provide a final report with a zoning map, details about pertinent zoning requirements and possible recommendations in the near future. To be added to the PPCC email list for receipt of meeting notices and other bulletins, email email@example.com.
Whether we support Councilmember Mike Bonin’s Will Rogers State Beach project or not, all Palisadians must support creating more affordable housing of all kinds to prevent homelessness.
People get concerned about new proposals, and I understand their concerns. But all of us must recognize that we have a problem with homelessness all over the city, and each part of the city must do its part in grappling with the problem.
We don’t know whether this proposal can work—that is why Councilmember Bonin has sponsored a resolution merely to investigate the feasibility of temporary housing—but that is precisely the point: Let us all keep an open mind, look carefully at what the city finds and determine how we in the Palisades can help.
It simply will not do to say that the homeless should “go somewhere else.” That is exactly what generates homelessness in the first place. The homeless are not “some other people”: they are women, men and children, many of whom work, many of whom are survivors of domestic violence, many of whom are veterans who have served our country.
I have lived in Palisades for more than decade, and my wife and I are parents of a teenage daughter. We try to raise her with strong values, and perhaps the strongest is caring for the most vulnerable segments of our society. One reason why we moved here is the small-town atmosphere of the Palisades, and certainly no value reflects a small town more than everyone caring for each other.
Three years ago in Sherman Oaks, a protestor against temporary homeless housing said that we should send the homeless into the desert, “just as we interned the Japanese during World War 2.” Surely we in the Palisades reject this view!
Let us all work together and show the city how a community can come together to build productive and creative solutions to homelessness. This community is a model in so many ways, and we can be a model here as well.
Rabbi Jonathan Zasloff
Professor of Law
UCLA School of Law
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