Tag Archives: Government Code 54953

The Downtown Center BID Is The Latest In A Long Line Of BIDs To Change Up A Brown-Act-Deficient Agenda In Response To My Freely Offered Amateur Criticism — Someday, Lord, And It Won’t Be Long, All These Damn BIDs In Los Angeles Are Just Gonna Follow The Damn Law Right From The Start — In My Dreams, Anyway

It’s quite a common occurrence around here for some random BID to send out yet another completely freaking illegal agenda or violate some other major requirement of the Brown Act and then, because I can’t send demand letters to all of them, I just drop them a friendly note and they, because you can’t argue with the truth, just go ahead and fix the damn agenda.

This is a useful pastime for all concerned. The BIDs get a free and easy lesson in how to follow the damn law,1 I get to write a blog post on the episode,2 and you, the faithful reader, get to hear about yet another technical violation of the Brown Act, which is really edumacational and why else is anyone even reading this damn blog if not to be edumacated? So like for instance the South Park BID does this on a regular basis, and the Venice BID has had an episode as well.

Oh, and I know I said above that you can’t argue with the truth, but actually the baddest BIDdies of them all of the moment, that unhinged flashmob of sick chuckleheads3 known to all students of BIDology as the Studio City BID, famous for having board members whose consciences are so guilty that they will not allow themselve to appear on camera, can in fact argue with the truth.4 This is why, after they refused to consider my friendly admonition that they were really blowing it with respect to the Brown Act, I had to send them a demand letter.5

But those Studio City-zens are the exception rather than the rule. Which brings us to today’s episode.6 It seems that on Monday, October 1, 2017, I received this agenda for a meeting of the Downtown Center BID’s executive committee, scheduled for yesterday morning. Thereon appeared this item:

IV. CLOSED SESSION
a. Personnel Matters, California Government Code §54957(b)(1) (ACTION) WOLK

And, you know, this is better than some attempts at describing closed sessions I’ve seen. At least they cited an actual code section as justification for closing it, which is more than many BIDdies will do. But it’s still not good enough, not nearly. These BIDdies gotta learn that a basic principal of the Brown Act is that what they say in a closed session might get to be a secret but what they’re doing in there rarely does. Read on for the gory details and what happened next!
Continue reading The Downtown Center BID Is The Latest In A Long Line Of BIDs To Change Up A Brown-Act-Deficient Agenda In Response To My Freely Offered Amateur Criticism — Someday, Lord, And It Won’t Be Long, All These Damn BIDs In Los Angeles Are Just Gonna Follow The Damn Law Right From The Start — In My Dreams, Anyway

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Yet Another Egregious Violation Of The Brown Act By The Pacific Palisades BID In 2016 — If This Is Mike Bonin’s Idea Of A Good BID What In The World Would A Bad One Look Like — As Before Not One Board Member Objected To Illegal Votes By Email, Telephone — As Before Legal Action Is Time-Barred So Yet Again The Palisades BID Escapes Consequences Of Their Actions

A couple weeks ago I published some evidence of mind-blowingly egregious Brown Act violations by the Pacific Palisades BID, which, what with Zeck Dreck (ret.) Laurie Sale’s twisted lurching obstructionism and Board Member and Caruso minion Rick Lemmo’s willingness to break the bank just to thwart my inquiries, has turned out, under the acrimonious influence of the world’s angriest CPRA lawyer, which is to say Carol F. Humiston, to be one of this City’s most difficult BIDs from which to obtain records in an orderly, prompt, lawful manner.

Nevertheless, persistence has paid off, and I did, eventually, this summer, obtain a big stack of goodies from these evil henchies up in Northwest zillionaireville and, as I said before, I’m gradually prepping this sizzlin’ hot mess of a production for publication. The text for today’s sermon is a series of emails from April 2016 showing yet another egregious1 Brown Act violation on the part of these littoral lunkheads. Here’s what went down. Laurie Sale2 emailed her damn Board on April 20, 2016, and this is what she had to say for herself:

From: Palisades BID <laurie@palisadesbid.org>

Sent: Wednesday, April 20, 2016 11:26 AM

To: ‘Asvina Narain’; ‘Benjamin Gold’; ‘DeeDee West’; Don Scott; Elliot Zorensky; ‘Joyce Brunelle’; ‘Laurie Sale’; Lee Ford; ‘Lynn Borland’; Rick Lemmo; Shaun Malek; Susan
Carroll

Cc: ‘Sharon Shapiro’

Subject: SPECIAL MEETING OF PALISADES BID BOARD

Attachments: Agenda Special Meeting April 28, 2016.docx

Dear Board Members,

Elliot and I spoke about setting up a SPECIAL BID meeting for next Wed., the 27th at 8:30. We’d like to have a resolution (ACTION ITEM) about formally supporting the Caruso Project. As you know, there is still some local opposition, but all of the other community organizations have given their support, and we’d like to know your thoughts on the matter. There is a planning committee meeting on Thurs. the 28 th We’d like the Caruso folks to know where we stand, and so, have decided to call this meeting, prior to the planning meeting.

The agenda is attached, and, as you will see, it’s simply a one topic special meeting. We’d really appreciate your attendance if possible.

I know it is last minute, but if you CANNOT attend, would you please email me with your written support or opposition to having the BID officially support the project. You may also call in to the meeting, at 8:30, and become part of the discussion, if you wish. Here is the number for the conference call:

Dial-in Number: ■■■■■■■■■
Access Code: ■■■■■■■■■

Also, at 8:00 on Wed., the folks from Spectrum, who are doing the power washing, will be there, so we can take photos for the press, and well be able to witness the completion of our first BID project.

Please rsvp to me

Thanks,

Laurie

No doubt you’ve spotted some problems here, and there are others that become clear only on reading the responses. Turn the page for links to emails, transcriptions, and discussions of all the juicy illegal details!
Continue reading Yet Another Egregious Violation Of The Brown Act By The Pacific Palisades BID In 2016 — If This Is Mike Bonin’s Idea Of A Good BID What In The World Would A Bad One Look Like — As Before Not One Board Member Objected To Illegal Votes By Email, Telephone — As Before Legal Action Is Time-Barred So Yet Again The Palisades BID Escapes Consequences Of Their Actions

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Even Funnier The Second Time Around! Ellen Riotto And/Or Manic Minion Katie Kiefer Of The South Park BID Continue To Follow Open-Sourced Wiki-Legal Advice From Internet Randoms At Your Favorite Blog Evers!!

It seems like forever ago by now, but maybe you recall that in February the South Parkers sent around an agenda announcing a closed session that was so freaking out of compliance with the Brown Act that I could not, despite mom’s best advice, keep my mouth shut. Thus I emailed the Parkies and hilarity and agenda revisions ensued!

Well, these Southies have another meeting coming up this very Thursday, and imagine my joy when I received a copy of the agenda! And imagine my horror when I noticed the bit about teleconferencing! Here’s what it said:

CONFERENCE DIAL-IN :
If you cannot join the meeting physically but wish to join via phone, meeting dial-in details:
Conference number: 857 – 216-3930
Conference PIN: 45426

Please notify Katie Kiefer. Director of Operations, at least 48-hours in advance if you will be dialing in. Contact her via email, Katie@SouthPark.LA, or by phone, (213) 663-1120.

We’ve been through this crapola before with the East Hollywood BID. The plain fact is that the Brown Act forbids teleconferencing unless it’s happening from a teleconference location where members of the public can go to participate. You can read all about it in §54953(b). It’s just not OK to assume that all members of the public who wish to participate have phones.

Also, the Brown Act at §54953.3 forbids local agencies1 to require members of the public to identify themselves as a condition of attending the meeting. This made me pretty sure that the BID’s requiring would-be teleconferencers to register their names with Ellen Riotto’s manic minion Katie Kiefer was another violation.

So anyway, usually I would just wait around for the BIDdies to actually break the damn law and then turn them in to the Public Integrity Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney like I did with the Los Felizites and more recently with the Central City East Association. But it was so entertaining the last time I warned them and they actually took my advice that I thought I’d give that another try.

So I sent them an email saying essentially hey friends you’re about to break the law again! And what do you know? A couple hours later they sent me an email2 saying essentially hey friend, you’re right! We’ll change everything! And then a couple-few days later, that is, this morning, they sent out a revised agenda stating definitively that:

NOTE: Teleconferencing into this meeting will not be enabled.

So woo-freaking-hoo, amirite?! Turn the page for transcriptions of the emails.
Continue reading Even Funnier The Second Time Around! Ellen Riotto And/Or Manic Minion Katie Kiefer Of The South Park BID Continue To Follow Open-Sourced Wiki-Legal Advice From Internet Randoms At Your Favorite Blog Evers!!

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How The East Hollywood BID, Drunk On White Privilitude And Zillionairity, Not Only Confessed Openly To Their Plans To Hold An Illegal Meeting But Their Boss Flunky, Jacob Jauregui, Even Argued With And Condescended To Me When I Was Kind Enough To Warn Him And His Damn Lawyer In Advance Rather Than Reporting Them To The Duly Constituted Authorites — And Then They Took My Good Advice And Cancelled Their Damn Meeting!

OK, I have a tiny little story for you about a tiny little BID, the East Hollywood BID, located in beautiful EHo, a toponym commonly used by no living human being ever for East Hollywood.

On December 20, 2017, at 4:26 p.m., East Hollywood BID Boss Flunky Jacob Jauregui1 sent out an email to the EHBID mailing list announcing a special meeting to be held by teleconference on Friday, December 22.2 I noticed that there was no physical location given in the announcement or on the agenda. However, the Brown Act explicitly forbids this. See §54953(b), which requires that if teleconferencing is used there must by physical locations which are open to the public at which they can participate in the meeting.

So for a while I thought I’d wait till they held the illegal meeting and then turn them in to the Public Integrity Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney. But then, moved perhaps by the true spirit of Christmas,3 I decided to let Jacob Jauregui know of his BID’s impending transgression and give them all a chance to do the right thing for once.
Continue reading How The East Hollywood BID, Drunk On White Privilitude And Zillionairity, Not Only Confessed Openly To Their Plans To Hold An Illegal Meeting But Their Boss Flunky, Jacob Jauregui, Even Argued With And Condescended To Me When I Was Kind Enough To Warn Him And His Damn Lawyer In Advance Rather Than Reporting Them To The Duly Constituted Authorites — And Then They Took My Good Advice And Cancelled Their Damn Meeting!

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United Downtown Los Angeles Conspiracy: How The Entire Board Of Directors Of The Central City East Association Egregiously Violated The Brown Act Except For Andy Bales, Richard Gardner, And Sylvia Kavoukjian, Who Don’t Seem To Have Been Invited Into The Secret Clubhouse For Some Reason — And How I Will Ask Them Nicely Never To Do It Again!

Background: You can read my previous stories on the Skid Row Neighborhood Council formation effort and also see Jason McGahan’s article in the Weekly and Gale Holland’s article in the Times for more mainstream perspectives.

Perhaps you’ve been following the story of the recent massive release of emails from the Downtown Center BID that has, so far, led to such revelations as the fact that Estela Lopez was at the heart of the United Downtown LA conspiracy, that she used her DLANC email address to further the conspiracy, and not least that six DLANC board members were covertly involved in that same conspiracy.

But we’re not done with the material yet! There’s still tons of interesting information to be gleaned. For instance, it turns out that 9 out of the 12 members of the Board of Directors of the infamous Central City East Association are on the United Downtown Los Angeles conspiracy mailing list.1 This, of course, makes the email discussion an awful lot like an illegal meeting of the board, according to the Brown Act.

It’s a serious violation, too. The Brown Act at §54959 states that:

Each member of a legislative body who attends a meeting of that legislative body where action is taken in violation of any provision of this chapter, and where the member intends to deprive the public of information to which the member knows or has reason to know the public is entitled under this chapter, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

As far as I know, no one has ever been prosecuted under this clause, but if someone’s going to be first, I won’t be surprised if it turns out to be the infamously thuggish CCEA. And it’s a hard case to make that quality of life crimes, e.g. public drinking, are more harmful than this kind of covert conspiratorial shenanigans. One’s unaesthetic at worst. The other degrades the very fabric of our open society.

Keep that in mind the next time you hear a bunch of BIDdies bitching about crime Downtown and turn the page for the evidence and a detailed analysis of the violation!
Continue reading United Downtown Los Angeles Conspiracy: How The Entire Board Of Directors Of The Central City East Association Egregiously Violated The Brown Act Except For Andy Bales, Richard Gardner, And Sylvia Kavoukjian, Who Don’t Seem To Have Been Invited Into The Secret Clubhouse For Some Reason — And How I Will Ask Them Nicely Never To Do It Again!

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Rafik Ghazarian And His Criminal Cronies From The Los Feliz Village BID Saved From Prosecution And Their Infernal BID From Dissolution On The Merest Of Mere Technicalities

One month ago today, you may recall, I reported the Los Feliz Village BID to the Public Integrity Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.1 I had exceedingly strong smoking gun level evidence, and you can read the original complaint here. Well, this morning I was semi-pleased to receive a copy of a letter from Alan Yochelson of the D.A.’s office to the BID’s attorney, Mr. Hollywood himself, Jeffrey Charles Briggs.

You can read a transcription after the break, but the upshot is that, as the DA received my complaint 91 days after the incident, they were barred by the Brown Act, which requires action within 90 days, from doing anything about it. However, Alan Yochelson, who handles Brown Act matters for the DA, saw fit to advise Jeffrey Charles Briggs to tell his client, the LFVBID, that such discussions as were had outside of duly noticed public meetings by the BIDdies, were against the fricking law.

The stakes were high, as it’s at least theoretically possible to force the dissolution of a BID if they’re found to have violated any law. Hence I expect that they’ll probably pay close attention to the Brown Act’s requirements in the future. I know I’ll pay very close attention to the deadline, which I didn’t know about, more’s the pity!
Continue reading Rafik Ghazarian And His Criminal Cronies From The Los Feliz Village BID Saved From Prosecution And Their Infernal BID From Dissolution On The Merest Of Mere Technicalities

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