City Council Sets Moratorium on Removal of Trees

San Marino officials will have the security of a moratorium on permits for tree removals as they tweak a proposed ordinance that is meant to address concerns about the practice and will be reintroduced in December.
Planning and Building Director Aldo Cervantes, whose department handles permits and code enforcement, has been directed to make several changes to the proposed ordinance. They include more thoroughly defining what hedges and tree topping are, adding a provision to revoke business licenses from those violating the ordinance, revising the requirement for minimum replacement tree size and removing language that distinguishes between front yard and backyard trees. Continue reading “City Council Sets Moratorium on Removal of Trees”

Man Charged With Setting Fires in Front of Businesses

A Rancho Cucamonga man has been arraigned on arson charges after being arrested last week by the San Marino Police Department in connection with fires that were set in front of Huntington Drive businesses in September.
The 27-year-old was arrested on Monday, Oct. 15, after an investigation by the SMPD, the San Marino Fire Department and the San Gabriel Police Department. Continue reading “Man Charged With Setting Fires in Front of Businesses”

Protection of Mature Trees on City Council’s Friday Agenda

The City Council on Friday will consider a long-anticipated proposed ordinance designed to extend greater protection to mature trees in San Marino, including during construction projects.
Commissioned in May after a lengthy discussion, the proposal is expected to improve the manner in which the public is notified of planned tree removals, substantially increase fines for various infractions, modify the appeal process, establish new parameters for permitting the removal of trees and extend the historic landmark designation to trees. Continue reading “Protection of Mature Trees on City Council’s Friday Agenda”

Everything’s Coming Up Roses

Photo by Staci Moraza / OUTLOOK San Marino resident and Sequoyah High School senior Louise Siskel was named the 2019 Rose Queen as princesses Lauren Baydaline and Ashley Hackett congratulate her.
Photo by Staci Moraza / OUTLOOK
San Marino resident and Sequoyah High School senior Louise Siskel was named the 2019 Rose Queen as princesses Sherry Ma and Ashley Hackett congratulate her.

In one of Pasadena’s favorite time-honored traditions, the Tournament of Roses on Tuesday announced its 101st Rose Queen for 2019, San Marino resident Louise Siskel, to the delight of a packed Pasadena Playhouse.
Siskel, a senior at Sequoyah High School, stood momentarily dazed when 2019 Tournament of Roses President Gerald Freeny called out her school and named her queen, only reacting when the six other rose princesses turned to her, applauding. Continue reading “Everything’s Coming Up Roses”

World War II Pilot’s Tales Transport Rotary Audience

Warren Arnett
Warren Arnett

In 1945, 20-year-old Warren “Jeff” Arnett from San Marino was ordered by the U.S. Army Air Corps to fly from Indiana to India where, he said, he experienced fear for the first time while shepherding supplies across the Himalayas to Burma to Chinese troops allied with America.
His homecoming later that year, after World War II’s end, began with a comedic return to civilian life for the former airman, as he told the Rotary Club of San Marino during its luncheon last week. Continue reading “World War II Pilot’s Tales Transport Rotary Audience”

City Moves Toward Decision on Future of Recreation Dept.

City Manager Marcella Marlowe will begin preparing a strategic plan to implement recommended changes to the city’s Recreation Department, including cost estimates to make the facility improvements necessary for a fully licensed preschool program to be run in the Stoneman School.
Marlowe also has been tasked with having the necessary work done to bring the facility, which houses virtually the entire Recreation Department, up to fire code as mandated by Fire Chief Mario Rueda. The City Council gave her $50,000, for the moment, to do so but will require her to come before the council if an individual contract for that work exceeds $30,000. Continue reading “City Moves Toward Decision on Future of Recreation Dept.”

Classes to Teach Residents About Police Operations

The San Marino Police Department invites residents interested in learning more about law enforcement to sign up for its new Community Police Academy that begins in November.
The academy, also called the CPA, is a six-week program of classes designed to give insight into SMPD operations and background in general law enforcement, in a relatively casual environment. Classes will cover broad topics such as investigative procedures and address contemporary issues such as police officers’ use of force while responding to incidents. Continue reading “Classes to Teach Residents About Police Operations”

First Responders Singled Out for Community Outreach

Photo by Larissa Althouse / OUTLOOK Sgt. Naved Qureshi (left) and firefighter-paramedic Sam Benites were honored as police officer and firefighter of the year by the San Marino Chamber of Commerce.
Photo by Larissa Althouse / OUTLOOK
Sgt. Naved Qureshi (left) and firefighter-paramedic Sam Benites were honored as police officer and firefighter of the year by the San Marino Chamber of Commerce.

For going the extra mile in reaching out to their community, Sgt. Naved Qureshi and firefighter-paramedic Sam Benites were recognized by the San Marino Chamber of Commerce as the police officer and firefighter of the year.
The two were honored at the chamber’s 11th annual Police and Fire Appreciation Luncheon last week at the San Marino Center. Other local elected officials also were there to dole out their own recognition of the two men. Continue reading “First Responders Singled Out for Community Outreach”

City to Study Costs of Storm Water Drainage Project

The City Council has tasked Parks and Public Works Director Michael Throne to meet with representatives from a host of other San Gabriel Valley cities collaborating on a Rio Honda River storm water drainage project to discuss San Marino’s expected fiscal contribution to the endeavor.
Throne is expected to report on the results of those meetings to the City Council at its November meeting. Information the City Council seeks includes a specific breakdown on the funding formula for the collaboration, an explanation of costs and whether the other cities are open to adjusting apportionments. Continue reading “City to Study Costs of Storm Water Drainage Project”

Building’s Condition Adds to Debate Over Recreation Dept.

A recent inspection of the Stoneman Building pointed to deficiencies in fire detection, so a blue-ribbon committee evaluation of the future of the Recreation Department later this month will be particularly timely.
The aged building, which the city bought from the San Marino Unified School District years ago for $6 million, has never left the local spotlight because its condition requires numerous health and safety advances whose potential cost keeps rising.
Now that the city is taking a hard look at its recreation programming, the building — site of the department’s preschool and other programs — is falling under still more scrutiny.
The blue-ribbon committee — composed of Mayor Steve Talt and Councilman Ken Ude along with five other “citizen advisers” — planned to take up the fire-safety findings this week.
Continue reading “Building’s Condition Adds to Debate Over Recreation Dept.”