Tag Archives: CD8

Mitch O’Farrell’s Secret Email Account Yields The First Concrete Evidence I’m Aware Of Concerning Staff-Mediated Back-Room Collusion Between City Council Members — Suggests Brown Act Violations On A Massive Scale — Consistent With Serial Meetings Coordinated Via Council Staff — Contributes To A Theory Of Staged City Council Debates Invariably Ending In Yet Another Unanimous Vote — At Very Least Yields Many Potentially Fruitful Leads For Future CPRA Requests

If you’ve ever attended a meeting of the Los Angeles City Council it’s very likely that you’ve seen one of the fully scripted performances that pass for debate with that body, ending, as always, with a unanimous vote in favor of yet another preordained conclusion. It’s a sickening spectacle, more worthy of a for-show-only parliament of some backwater bargain-bin Ruritanian dictatorship than of the legislators who are putatively leading our great City. This phenomenon is the subject of much discussion here in Los Angeles, and was the basis for at least one sadly ill-fated lawsuit.

If you haven’t seen an example of this spooky kabuki, you can take a look at this August 23, 2016 debate on whether the City should support or oppose some state bill about taxi regulation.1 After the break you’ll find a detailed chronology with links into the video, which will save you a lot of time because the whole thing is more than 30 minutes long and it is mind-numbing. There’s no conceivable way that episodes like this one could happen other than through prior discussion, collusion, and agreement among the Councilmembers. It’s completely implausible that it could be otherwise.

The problem with that, of course, is that prior discussion, collusion, and agreement among Councilmembers are illegal in California. It’s even illegal for Council staffers to discuss things and then report back to their bosses about other CMs’ opinions as reported by their respective staffs. The law mandates real public debates and forbids scripted performances whose conclusions are predetermined in back rooms. In particular, the Brown Act at §54952.2(b)(1) states explicitly that:

A majority of the members of a legislative body shall not, outside a meeting authorized by this chapter, use a series of communications of any kind, directly or through intermediaries, to discuss, deliberate, or take action on any item of business that is within the subject matter jurisdiction of the legislative body.

As far as I know there’s never been a successful Brown Act complaint against the City Council on these grounds. Courts will not, I’m under the impression, accept arguments based on the fact that it’s totally obvious what’s going on. Without sufficient proof of out-of-meeting communications no action is possible. And there just has not hitherto been any proof to be found, or none that I know of. But it appears that, buried deep within the recent release of emails from Mitch O’Farrell’s toppest secretest privatest email account, there are some hints of how this coordination might be accomplished.

There’s no proof there of a Brown Act violation, but there’s evidence that in 2013 David Giron, who is Mitch O’Farrell’s legislative director, coordinated with CD5 and CD8 regarding the positions of Paul Koretz and Bernard Parks2 with respect to fracking in Los Angeles and then communicated the intentions of those other CMs to Mitch O’Farrell. This is the kind of thing that the Brown Act forbids if it takes place among the majority of the Council, or even the majority of a Council committee.3

There’s no hint in the evidence that this discussion is any kind of anomaly, so it may be the first piece of the puzzle of how the City Council builds consensus out of view of the public. It certainly gives me hope that the truth will be brought out eventually.4 Take a look at the email exchange here, which is on the surface about Mitch O’Farrell’s position on CF 13-0002-S108, having to do with a State Senate bill on fracking. There are transcriptions and detailed discussion of the issues involved right after the break.
Continue reading Mitch O’Farrell’s Secret Email Account Yields The First Concrete Evidence I’m Aware Of Concerning Staff-Mediated Back-Room Collusion Between City Council Members — Suggests Brown Act Violations On A Massive Scale — Consistent With Serial Meetings Coordinated Via Council Staff — Contributes To A Theory Of Staged City Council Debates Invariably Ending In Yet Another Unanimous Vote — At Very Least Yields Many Potentially Fruitful Leads For Future CPRA Requests

Share

Scenes From The Cosmo Club’s Appeal Of The Revocation Of Its Conditional Use Permit At The PLUM Committee Part 1: Marqueece Harris-Dawson Is An American Hero, MK.Org Video Of Racist Sunset-Vine BID Rant Played In City Hall

Marqueece Harris-Dawson is an American hero.
Marqueece Harris-Dawson is an American hero.
Yesterday the Planning and Land Use Management Committee heard the Cosmo Club’s appeal of the Zoning Administrator’s revocation of their conditional use permit. See the whole thing here, with a very short second part here. Also, the Council file is here. This is the second in the ongoing series of Hollywood clubs that cater to minorities being targeted for elimination by Kerry Morrison, the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance, the LAPD, and CD13 rep Mitch O’Farrell. The racist nature of this anti-nightclub campaign is revealing itself to the public, as dirty secrets will do, so this hearing drew some protesters who stated clearly, articulately, just exactly what is going on in Hollywood. Also, although L.A. Times reporting on this issue to date has been sporadic and radically incomplete, I spotted the incomparable Emily Alpert-Reyes exchanging contact information with Cosmo Club attorney Mike Ayaz after the hearing, so maybe something interesting is forthcoming.

There are links to a number of highlights at the end of this post, but the hearing was particularly rich, and I’m going to have to cover it in increments, starting at the end. If you’re not familiar with the situation, you can read up about it here and also here.1 But here is the short version of how we got to this point: Kerry Morrison, her BIDs, and Peter Zarcone decided to destroy a bunch of nightclubs in Hollywood. Mitch O’Farrell told City Planning to get on it. They did, and the City Council will vote in favor of Mitch no matter how bogus the evidence is because they also want to exercise unilateral control over every aspect of everything in their districts, which they can only do with the connivance of their colleagues. Marqueece Harris-Dawson didn’t play along at yesterday’s hearing, which, although he was merely doing his job as a Councilmember, is very brave, since if he does it too often the zillionaire elite will certainly take away his seat in 2019.

In any case, after interminable testimony by Zoning Administrator Aleta James which listed every traffic ticket and open container violation within 100 yards of the business as is evidently the practice in these cases, after LAPD Hollywood Division Captain Cory Palka shilling for real estate developers, after greasy little liar and LAPD Hollywood undercover vice cop Benjamin Thompson told his greasy little lies, after many cogent comments by actual human beings opposing the City’s raw destructive power, after Sean Rafael from the Cosmo played OUR VIDEO from 2015, after all that, a small miracle occurred. Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson of CD8 questioned the Zoning Administrator extremely closely, ultimately a round of applause from the audience, who were amazed to witness that rarest of phenomena in Los Angeles: truth spoken from behind a desk in a Council hearing. Read on for details.
Continue reading Scenes From The Cosmo Club’s Appeal Of The Revocation Of Its Conditional Use Permit At The PLUM Committee Part 1: Marqueece Harris-Dawson Is An American Hero, MK.Org Video Of Racist Sunset-Vine BID Rant Played In City Hall

Share