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Political Gumbo: You Still Have Your Voice and More From Bonta

Published on Tuesday, May 17, 2022 | 11:20 am

The business part of Monday’s council meeting moved along pretty swiftly.

The wall came when they hit the callers on matters not on the agenda. Nothing new, except people calling the homeless, “houseless.”

An aside, let’s be clear.

Pan handling is not illegal in Pasadena. I worked in Old Pasadena for 20 years. If it was illegal, police would spend all day arresting people on Colorado Boulevard between De Lacey and Fair Oaks Avenues.

The Supreme Court has already ruled that cities cannot make homelessness a crime.

Best comment came after a woman cussed out the City Council.

She went into it too. Her tone changed, her speech pattern became more abrupt.

It was some serious cussing. I have not heard cussing like that since the PW was sold, and I was the one doing it.

After she was done, I don’t remember if City Clerk Mark Jomsky had to cut her off or if she finally slammed the phone down.

Then Mayor Victor Gordo said “This proves we are committed to the First Amendment.”

Of course, it’s not a First Amendment issue and the City Clerk and City Council can in fact demand callers be respectful.

However, the point is the same. Everybody pretty much gets their say on Monday night for an allotted amount of time.

For all the talk that moving public comment on matters not on the agenda to the end of the meeting would somehow curb speech, the same seven or eight people who complained about the comments being moved have called in every week at the end of the meeting.

No one lost their right to speak.

Funny how that worked out isn’t it.

You still have a voice, and you can still address your elected officials or Pasadena’s elected officials if you don’t live here.

I’m still pretty sure that telling them to go F themselves won’t get them to take action.

But I get it, if you feel powerless and frustrated sometimes cussing is all you have.

Mentioning frustrated, accountability goes for everybody, not just the local activists.

Appointed and elected officials must also be held accountable.

That includes the state’s Attorney General Rob Bonta.

In the Monday Morning Bullpen, I pointed out the hypocrisy of Bonta’s statements on the city’s SB 9 ordinances.

Well, Bonta released another statement on Tuesday morning.

We now have gone from ‘you can’t do that’ to ‘thank you for doing that which I said you can’t do’ to … and, well I have no idea what he means in this one.

The backstory first, the City Council passed the permanent ordinance allowing protection from SB 9 in landmark districts and conducted the second reading on Monday.

That’s plain and simple.

Originally Bonta said that the law does not protect Landmark Districts. That came in a letter in March.

Last week, he praised the city for passing an ordinance that provides those protections and tried to take a victory lap.

Here’s the latest statement.

“We’re pleased the City Council has voted to approve a new ordinance implementing SB 9 that will bring Pasadena into compliance with the law. Our Housing Strike Force is committed to enforcing state housing laws and working with local governments as partners to address California’s housing shortage and affordability crisis. This new ordinance is the result of that work, and includes critical changes to address our concerns with Pasadena’s urgency ordinance. I hope other local governments take notice of our work here, and take seriously their obligations under state housing laws.”

Later he says.

“While we understand there has been some confusion with the City’s continued use of the term ‘landmark district,’ our primary concern with Pasadena’s inclusion of the term “landmark district” in its urgency ordinance was that it was not grounded in any of the constraints or limitations imposed on what constitutes a “landmarks, historic properties, or historic districts” for purposes of SB 9 compliance.

A “landmark district” as Pasadena had previously defined it was untethered to historical resources and could be used to potentially exempt large swaths of the city from SB 9 compliance.”

Yeah there was confusion alright, but it wasn’t local confusion.

We’ve had a yes, no and a possible maybe.

This is as bad as some of the calls on matters not on the agenda.

He has no clue regarding the city’s policy.

Last point, to the guy who called last week championing the Osmond Brothers as a great group.

Damn, for real?

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