Darling versus Park on the Community Council Agenda

Erin Darling

If a resident is still trying to decide how the two CD 11 candidates, Traci Park and Erin Darling, stand on issues, they will appear via Zoom on the Pacific Palisades Community Council from 6 to 6:45 p.m. on Thursday, September 22. (Visit: pacpalicc.org for the link).

A September 13 L.A. Times story (“In West L.A., Two Lawyers Clash over an open City Council Seat, Encampments and Policing”) presented an overview of the two candidates:

“In the first round of the election, Darling distinguished himself as the only candidate who opposed the city ordinance that allows council members to request camping bans in certain protected zones, such as around libraries and parks. That aligned him with Bonin and against Park, who said she would not hesitate to invoke the ordinance, known as 41.18.

Traci Park

“The City Council voted 11 to 3 in August to prohibit homeless people from setting up tents within 500 feet of schools and day-care centers. Park strongly supported the majority, saying the move would help protect the health and safety of children. Darling declined to say whether he would have voted for the prohibition, but he said he would not try to thwart it, now that it is city law.

“A plan to build 140 units of homeless housing on two city-owned parking lots along the Venice Boulevard median also divides the candidates. Park says the project is in a potentially dangerous tsunami zone and out of character for the neighborhood adjacent the Venice canals. Darling said the city, and his opponent, need to stop finding excuses to block new construction that would help alleviate the crisis.

“The duo’s views on police and policing also diverge dramatically. Park wants to beef up the LAPD. She would increase the force from its current level of less than 9,300 to a minimum of 10,000. Darling says that too much of the city’s budget has been funneled to police and that more money should go to other services, including mental health workers. He has not named the right size for the LAPD.”


Also on the agenda, the PPCC will once again consider bylaws amendments, that mostly center around categories for different organizations.

Members of Resilient Palisades were presented with a certificate of recognition for the nonprofits environmental efforts by Councilman Mike Bonin (kneeling, second from left).

For example, Resilient Palisades, a nonprofit, which was formed in 2019, to work on energy resilience, plant-based solutions, zero waste and clean air and water, was not placed in the environmental group with Temescal Canyon Association.

It seems that some members of TCA did not want to share the environmental designation with another group, so Resilient was placed as a Civic Organization.

Another bylaw change would move the American Legion from Service Clubs and place it under Civic Organizations with the Civic League.

There are those on the PPCC that argue that the service organizations and representation should never change, that they were permanent when the organization was formed in 1973 and should remain that way.

A similar argument was made when the late George Wolfberg was the member at large in 2015. This editor reported (“http://palisadesnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Palisades-News-October-7-2015.pdf) “Wolfberg, who has also served as PPCC president, said the argument that the four permanent seats should automatically stay that way for historical reasons was not accurate.

“‘In December 2005, after a 12-year absence from the Council, PPRA [Pacific Palisades Resident Association] applied for reinstatement,’ he said, noting that when they were reinstated, the vote was taken away from the youth representative in order to maintain 23 voting members.

“Richard Cohen, co-chair of the bylaws committee, said that when the changes were drafted, the committee felt it was a mistake to say any one organization in the Palisades was more important than another.

“Chamber of Commerce president Adam Glazer announced that the Chamber would vote in favor of the bylaw change, thereby losing its permanent seat and alternating every year with a new Business Improvement District representative.

“Historical Society representative Eric Dugdale argued against the new bylaws. ‘We have to regard the bylaws as the Constitution. Change should never be taken lightly. It seems like we are being attacked from the inside.’ He then quoted Benjamin Franklin: ‘If we don’t hang together, we’ll hang separately.

“A rare secret ballot was taken. In order for bylaws change, it needed 15 votes: two-thirds majority of the 23 voting members. The motion lost by three votes (12 for, 11 against). The status quo was preserved.”

Will Resilient Palisades be classified as an environmental group? Tune into the meeting to find out.

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