First published in the Nov. 20 print issue of the Burbank Leader.
A plan to build hundreds of apartment units at the former Fry’s Electronics site will move forward, Burbank officials decided this week, despite opposition to the development.
The Burbank Aero Crossings project, located at 3211 N. Hollywood Way, will feature a total of 862 housing units, two restaurants and office space. Those units include 80 homes that will be designated for very low-income households. Continue reading “City Denies Appeal of Mixed-Use Project”
Addressing residents’ worries about an incoming popular fried chicken restaurant chain, city officials said this week that they will monitor noise, traffic and trash around the establishment. A facility for Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers is being built at 1750 W. Olive Ave., at the corner of Olive Avenue and Orchard Drive. The close proximity of the location, which will include a drive-thru, to a neighborhood has some residents concerned. Municipal staff members and Raising Cane’s representatives have pledged to mitigate potential issues, actions City Council members pushed for during their meeting Tuesday. Neighbors have rallied against the construction, with a flyer opposing the drive-thru being distributed in the nearby residential area at one point. Several have contacted the City Council during public comment periods, including this week, expressing concern that traffic will spill from the drive-thru into residential streets.
The City Council voted this week to fund enforcement of Burbank’s face-covering rules through May while also requesting some areas in Magnolia Park be prioritized. The council’s decision Tuesday provided another $100,000 from the general fund to Willdan Engineering, which provides staff at the rate of $65 an hour each to ensure people are adhering to face-covering requirements in busy areas of Burbank. Nearly $100,000 was spent on the initiative from mid-October to late January. In the same meeting, the council directed city staff members to bring back a potential ordinance temporarily limiting the fees third-party delivery services can charge restaurants to 20% of the order price. The proposed ordinance is expected to include — either immediately or eventually — protections for delivery drivers’ pay.
City Councilman Bob Frutos was appointed this week by his fellow members to serve as Burbank’s mayor for the next year, with Jess Talamantes to hold the position of vice mayor. Frutos, who was Burbank’s mayor from 2015-2016 and has been a council member since 2013, was quickly appointed by his peers — who include newcomers Konstantine Anthony and Nick Schultz — during the council’s annual reorganization meeting on Monday. Frutos was nominated for mayor by Talamantes, who was in turn nominated for the vice mayor position by Anthony. Frutos, a former Los Angeles police officer and Burbank police commissioner, has served for the past year as vice mayor. Former Mayor Sharon Springer, whom he replaced, remains a City Council member. “I know the road ahead of us will be the most difficult in modern history to serve on any council,” Frutos said Monday. “Like so many other cities across our nation, we’re just beginning to see the economic devastation of a sort that we really haven’t seen since the Great Depression. … Our top priority will be maintaining the fiscal health of our city and to continue to work on the economic recovery of our city.”
Change could be coming to Burbank, according to the two new City Council members its residents elected. Both Konstantine Anthony and Nick Schultz ran on progressive platforms that included ideas involving police reform and increased resources for people experiencing homelessness, and pledged to help the city recover from the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We absolutely need change in the city,” Anthony said, pointing out that only two of the eight candidates, himself included, had run for a seat on the panel before. “There is not a single person I’ve talked to who didn’t have something that they needed changed in this city. It was a change election. So let’s do it — let’s make some change.”
Nearly a month after Election Day, the final ballot results from Los Angeles County are in: Konstantine Anthony and Nick Schultz are expected to join the Burbank City Council in December.
Anthony soared into first place early in the ballot count process, with 17,529 votes as of Monday, Nov. 30 — when the L.A. County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk certified the results. Schultz maintained a consistent lead for the second open council seat, with 13,105 voters having cast a ballot for him. The pair will be sworn in to the City Council at a reorganization meeting on Dec. 14.
City Councilwoman Emily Gabel-Luddy this week encouraged her colleagues to form a subcommittee to discuss means of advancing the status of women and other minority groups in Burbank. The request came at the end of a Tuesday meeting in which council members tackled a packed agenda including topics ranging from sidewalk vendors to issues with local coyote populations. Gabel-Luddy’s recommendation contained few details, but she made it clear she wanted the potential subcommittee’s scope to go beyond simply analyzing the status of women.
With Los Angeles County election officials whittling down the number of ballots remaining to be counted, the leads of Burbank City Council candidates Konstantine Anthony and Nick Schultz late this week showed little sign of fading. Anthony and Schultz have led the race for the two open City Council seats since the first wave of results was announced on Election Day. With 17,448 votes as of this Tuesday, the most recent count available, Anthony’s place as a presumed council member-elect seemed unshakable.
Days after the election, Konstantine Anthony and Nick Schultz continued late this week to be the front-runners for two seats on the Burbank City Council, though Tamala Takahashi added suspense to the race by hovering in third place. Anthony’s expected presence on the council would be only the latest development in his complicated relationship with the city: If he clinches victory, the disability services provider will have gone from suing Burbank this year to joining its lead panel in December. As of the most recent update from Los Angeles County on Thursday evening, Anthony had 15,222 votes, or 20.7% of the total of votes counted, while Schultz had 11,328 votes, or 15.4%. If their leads hold, the two will sit on the council for the next four years. Takahashi was not far behind, however, nabbing 10,862 votes, or 14.77%, in the Tuesday election in which eight candidates vied.
With millions of votes counted in Los Angeles County, some local candidates have appeared to take the lead in their races, while a controversial rent regulation measure faces steep opposition so far.
The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s Office last updated figures at a little before 3 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 13. The office said Tuesday night that there was an estimated 142,715 ballots left to count, not including votes postmarked by Election Day and received through Nov. 20. About 69,500 of the ballots left to count were mail-in ballots, including those deposited in a drop box.