City Council Hesitates to Budget for Sound Walls

In the last of three budget meetings, City Council members opted on Thursday, June 28, to hold off funding four sound walls and the long-discussed bikeway and pedestrian project near the YMCA as they worked to balance the city’s budget for the fiscal year that began July 1.
La Cañada Flintridge’s total general fund revenue for the next year is budgeted at $14,650,375, which will match its expenditures, according to Finance Director Rebekka Hosken. Continue reading “City Council Hesitates to Budget for Sound Walls”

City Council Watches Progress of Portantino Bills

The La Cañada Flintridge City Council seemed pleased to hear state Sen. Anthony Portantino, a local resident, was working on a couple of bills of interest to the community’s residents.
Portantino is behind Senate Bill 1317, which addresses sober living facilities, and SB 1266, which addresses those convicted of burglaries. Both bills are in the Senate Appropriations Committee at the moment.
Ann Wilson, division manager for the city of La Cañada Flintridge, presented updates on current legislative bills at the City Council meeting this week, by request of Mayor Terry Walker, to coincide with the council’s own update.
“I thought it would be nice for the public to hear what is going on in Sacramento,” Walker said. Continue reading “City Council Watches Progress of Portantino Bills”

Local Legislators Craft Controls on Sober Living Homes

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
California Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, who asks for communities to be “compassionate” when accepting sober living facilities, has introduced a bill that could bar them from clustering and creating “a hospital facility” in one neighborhood.

Neighbors living on or near the 900 block of Green Lane were shocked to learn last August that a house on the street was being used as a for-profit drug and alcohol treatment center. They were clued in only after a break-in at the then-unoccupied site was called in to the Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Department and then reported in the newspaper.
They also were taken aback by the fact that the city of La Cañada Flintridge had no discretion over what was happening at the six-bedroom, seven-bathroom house beside enforcing zoning code requirements or responding to nuisance complaints if any arose. Continue reading “Local Legislators Craft Controls on Sober Living Homes”

Student Suicide Prevention Bill Passes Education Committee

The Student Suicide Prevention Bill authored by state Sen. Anthony Portantino passed the Senate Education Committee with unanimous bipartisan support last week.
Senate Bill 972 would require public, charter and private schools to print a suicide prevention hotline number and/or text crisis lines on the back of identification cards for students enrolled in 7th-12th grade or at any higher education institution. Continue reading “Student Suicide Prevention Bill Passes Education Committee”

LCUSD Says Late Start Reaction Trending Positive

Midway through the school year, La Cañada High School and 7/8 students seem to be taking the experiment of late start well, although administrators await the winter and spring sports seasons to hit their stride for additional input.
Jim Cartnal, executive director of pupil and personnel programs and services for LCUSD, shared preliminary data at Tuesday’s La Cañada Unified Governing Board meeting. Surveys have indicated the students are “by and large” in favor of the later school start times of 8:30 a.m. as opposed to 7:45 a.m., even if it didn’t necessarily mean they were getting additional sleep as intended.
“Openly, it’s a mixed bag,” Cartnal said. “Kids are getting some more sleep, but not all kids are getting more sleep.” Continue reading “LCUSD Says Late Start Reaction Trending Positive”

State Senator Speaks to Parent Group About School Start Time

Having successfully lobbied for it in both his legislative body and his hometown, state Sen. Anthony Portantino hopes to tackle the topic of later start times for middle and high schools in San Marino.
Speaking before the San Marino Schools Participation Forum last Friday, Portantino first related to the parents in the room that among his many other roles and titles, he is “more than anything else, just a public school dad.” Continue reading “State Senator Speaks to Parent Group About School Start Time”

Later Start Reviews Mixed; More Sleep, Less Time

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK School starts at 8:30 a.m. on the  La Cañada High School campus this year, 45 minutes later than before. The change was made in an effort to give adolescent students more time to sleep.
Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
School starts at 8:30 a.m. on the
La Cañada High School campus this year, 45 minutes later than before. The change was made in an effort to give adolescent students more time to sleep.

Jimmie Myers said he believes students in his zero period orchestra class are benefiting from the extra shuteye they’re getting this school year.
How can he tell?
“They laugh at more of my jokes,” he said.
Spurred by research even more scientific than Myers’ methodology, La Cañada Unified School District opted to start the school day later this year so the adolescents attending La Cañada High School and LCHS 7/8 have an opportunity to get more valuable sleep. Continue reading “Later Start Reviews Mixed; More Sleep, Less Time”

LCF Centenarian Honored for a Life of Progress

Photos courtesy Lyn Slotky
Mary Naff prepares to cut her birthday cake, which lauds her as an “American Pioneer.” About 70 guests celebrated Naff’s 100 birthday at the Democratic Club’s Summer Picnic at Nalini and Bob Lasiewicz’s home in La Cañada Flintridge.

La Cañada Flintridge’s Mary Naff celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by more than 100 friends associated with the Cañada Crescenta Democratic Club that she helped found 12 years ago. The crowd included some noteworthy area politicians, including state Sen. Anthony Portantino and state Assemblywoman Laura Friedman.
“We do this every year, but it was only because of my 100th that I was anything, because I’m not an officer or anything,” Naff said. “We had a mixture of all ages and races and Anthony gave me a proclamation; it was a nice little presentation. He belongs to our club, and he’s particularly important right now.” Continue reading “LCF Centenarian Honored for a Life of Progress”