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”

Council Approves New City Hall Design

Photos by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
A rendering illustrates what visitors to La Cañada Flintridge’s new City Hall can expect to see when the renovations on the building are finished in late 2018 or early 2019.

The City Council voted 4-1 last week in favor of the “original design” concept recommended by the New City Hall Renovation Subcommittee that is estimated to cost $6.45 million.
Concerned about the cost, Councilman Greg Brown voted against approving the final design plan and authorizing the preparation of bid specifications, but the other four council members embraced the proposal at a special meeting on Thursday, April 12.
“This is a 50-year decision, and if we’re going to make a 50-year decision, we have to make the right decision, and I think that’s the first plan,” Councilman Michael Davitt said. Continue reading “Council Approves New City Hall Design”

New Mayor Talks Goals, Shows Off New City Hall

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
During Tuesday’s City Council meeting new Mayor Terry Walker (right) told outgoing Mayor Michael Davitt that she has “big shoes to fill” in the coming year, using footwear as props to illustrate that point.

Terry Walker has substantial goals that she’d like to accomplish — and big shoes to fill, she said — in the next year, her first as mayor of La Cañada Flintridge.
She demonstrated Tuesday by holding aloft a loafer belonging to Michael Davitt, LCF’s outgoing mayor, and then inserting one of her high-heeled shoes within it: “This your shoe, and this is my shoe,” she said, as Davitt sat beside her, chuckling. “I will try to live up to your shoe size.”
After Walker’s first meeting as mayor adjourned, show-and-tell continued at the “changeover” reception as community members filled the hallways and lobby of the former Sport Chalet corporate office building that soon will contain City Hall. Continue reading “New Mayor Talks Goals, Shows Off New City Hall”

LCF Sees Fewer Burglaries in February

Before heading to Kagel Canyon to begin evacuations ahead of this week’s rainstorm, Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Capt. Chris Blasnek stopped by Tuesday’s City Council meeting to report that the flurry of burglaries that hit La Cañada Flintridge at the start of the year seems to have subsided.
“The February statistics are in, and home residential burglaries went way down to four,” said Blasnek, comparing that tally with the 14 that occurred in January. “One is too many. However, I would like to share some notes I took on these burglaries.” Continue reading “LCF Sees Fewer Burglaries in February”

City, Sheriff Share Crime-Stopper Tactics

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Capt. Chris Blasnek encourages residents to be observant and to call the local sheriff’s station whenever they spot something that looks suspicious.

City officials and local law enforcement personnel hear you, La Cañada Flintridge, and they’re on the case. That was the message at Tuesday’s City Council meeting, much of which was dedicated to sharing various tactics being used to combat a recent uptick in crime.
Echoing the concerns of many in the community, Amy Bernhard told council members that after living in LCF for 17 years, recent crimes — including a pair of home invasions in December — have made her feel unsafe in the city for the first time. She said she found herself setting the alarm during the day when she was home. Continue reading “City, Sheriff Share Crime-Stopper Tactics”

New LCF Permit Tracking System Set for October Debut

Arabo Parseghian said he expects the La Cañada Flintridge’s new permit tracking software system to be running by October, if not earlier.
Parseghian, a division manager within the city’s administrative department, updated the City Council on the work implementing the program.
He said he and Deputy Director of Community Development Susan Koleda have completed two of six phases in the process, with a four-month test by the planning department on the horizon.
Following that, staff will complete the final data conversion and then the system will go live. Continue reading “New LCF Permit Tracking System Set for October Debut”

Residents’ Concerns Addressed by Sheriff’s Department

By Capt. Chris Blanek
Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station

Capt. Chris Blasnek

As most of you are aware, there have been recent news articles concerning two home invasion robberies in La Cañada Flintridge. Although alarming and causing great concern, it is important to clarify some of the facts and what is being done.
It is the job of your Sheriff’s Department to keep residents safe and to do everything possible to identify the suspects and bring them to justice. I would also like to stress that during times of a serious crime, the Sheriff’s Department needs your support more than ever. Remember, we are here all year long for you, patrolling your streets, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We have a dedicated staff of deputies and professional staff. Most of the residents know us and enjoy a great community relationship. Continue reading “Residents’ Concerns Addressed by Sheriff’s Department”

Sheriff Ramps Up Traffic Stops in Wake of Home Invasions

Capt. Chris Blasnek

Stephanie Arnold said she’s gotten messages from eight people seeking advice about starting a Neighborhood Watch on their blocks since a pair of armed home invasions were reported last month in La Cañada Flintridge.
“Home invasion robberies are a next-level thing,” said Arnold, who’s captained her Neighborhood Watch group for the past year. “Something I really take a lot of pride in is that we are a safe town, and to see that bubble burst a little bit, I’m sad.”
Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Capt. Chris Blasnek said he too has heard from many residents since masked men, allegedly armed with a handgun in both instances, were reported to have forced their way into a home in the 800 block of Inverness Drive on Dec. 12, and into another home in the 800 block of Flintridge Avenue on Dec. 31. The assailants allegedly tied up residents, ransacked their homes and made off with valuables.
“The main thing I want to tell the residents is: Trust in us,” said Blasnek on Monday, after returning from a day spent issuing evacuation orders in the Kagel Canyon area susceptible to mudslides. “We’re there for them all year long and we need them to be there for us now. We take it seriously and we’re going to do everything we can to catch these guys, and eventually, we will catch them.” Continue reading “Sheriff Ramps Up Traffic Stops in Wake of Home Invasions”

LCF Mayor Reflects on Event-Filled Year

Michael Davitt

Michael Davitt said he’ll remember his second go-round as La Cañada Flintridge mayor for the city’s purchase of a new City Hall building, for the traffic jams spurred by the 210 Freeway resurfacing project, for the long-sought approval of Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy’s Master Plan — but, most of all, for the loss of fellow councilman and friend Dave Spence, who suffered a fatal heart attack in May.
Over scrambled egg whites recently at Magpie’s Grill, Davitt discussed some of the key events in 2017 and previewed some of what he’s excited about in 2018.
Highlights of that conversation follow:

Continue reading “LCF Mayor Reflects on Event-Filled Year”