Index for Save Simi Valley

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We, the People, Need to Save Simi Valley

We need a City Council of 5 Independent people, not 5 of the same. With regards to appointments, Michelle Foster said that she would have research it. Glen Becerra said that he could see no reason to have a special election. The reason is because we are supposed to have a democratic process of allowing the public to vote on who they want on the Council, not the current Council deciding. This could be an issue depending on the outcome of the mayor's race.

We need a Council that will not do the will of special or personal interests, such as the mobile food vendor ban where Barbra Williamson said that her main reason was due to the mobile businesses not having the same costs as a stationary business. This is NONE of the Council's business and seems to be doing the will of the stationary businesses, not of the community.

We need a Council which follows the rules and the laws, the Miller's CUP is a prime example of the Council not following the law and doing the will of special interests by the Council requiring HOA approval, which from what I can tell is illegal. In the second round of the CUP, Steve Sojka and Michelle Foster both detailed the requirements for issuing a CUP and that all conditions were met, but Glen Becerra instead did want a friend wanted, who I hear he does fund-raising with, who no longer lives in Simi Valley and who wrote a letter saying that it was not about the cows, yet that is exactly what the CUP was about. This is doing the will of special interests and not following the rules.

Mayor Miller said that we have 970 CERT volunteers, but this is not true since Simi Valley does not maintain the list of CERT members, does not have any on-going training, like other cites. When there was a County CERT refresher, Simi Valley did not notify those who had taken the CERT class nor did they even put it on their web page. This appears to violate Municipal code 4-5.08 regarding Emergency Plans.

The current Council changes whether their position is full-time or part time, depending on what serves their interests at the time. Glen Becerra said that if the public wanted them to get rid of the benefits, they would, but so far I have seen no action so that you can can vote on this or even give your opinion at a Council meeting. At the Acorn Forum, Steve Sojka listened and said that he would bring this up at a Council meeting, but after the election. Brian D. Iverson said Glen is in city-related meetings and phone conversations to constituents throughout the day, including when he is at his job. How many of you would be fired if were working for another paid job at your full-time job? Since he works for SCE, all of us pay his salary there. We also deserve to know ALL of the money the Council members get from all the various boards they are on, both public and private, due to their being a Council member.

We need Council members who are honest, not deceptive, such as the statement that Simi Valley is safer than 20 years ago, which is true, but the crime rate from 2003 to 2009 is higher than it was from 1998 to 2002 or the false claims regarding the land fill expansion such as Barbra Williamson claiming that there would be 600 additional truck trips, but since the average number of truck trips reported is around 500 and the expansion would allow for an increase in the maximum number of truck trips by 70, from 822 to 892, but still under 900, how can you add 600 to 500 and still be under 892? Well, the answer came from another person in which it was said that she is talking about traffic trips, which is double since it counts a truck going in and counts the truck again when it leaves.

I have lived in Simi Valley since 1997 and I don't think that things have been getting better. There is more crowding, more traffic, now a 5th McDonald's have been approved right next to townhouses, etc. People have moved to Simi Valley because they liked the way it was, but that seems to be changing.

Do you know what the City Council has been doing? I know that I don't know all of what they have been doing, but most of what I have seen I don't like. I know it is not easy to find out what is going on. There is no email notification, no web pages which are easy to see what they have done. There is no newsletter informing people what laws they have passed. Most of what I hear about is because I see it in the local newspaper. I was shocked to discover that the City Council banned wood fences in an article which talked about allowing it for residences. At one council meeting, Council Member Steven T. Sojka made comments about HOAs which sounded like he thinks that the City Council should get more involved in the private business of home owners and their HOA. The City Council should provide essential services and not try to get involved in every aspect of a resident's life.

I personally feel that we should not have to have term limits as the people who run should do the job and then go back to what they were doing. Unfortunately, that is not what happens. Many of the members on the City Council have been there for years and it does not seem to me that they are doing the will of all the people, but instead doing what serves their own interests and the interests of those who support them. Due to this, I think that term limits are a good idea in order to keep fresh people in the positions.

If nothing else, I hope that I can encourage you to follow what the City Council is doing and let them know when you agree or disagree with what they are doing. This is the only way that the City is going to go in the direction in which the people of the city want it to go. Otherwise, those in control are going to do what they want. If you look at the news, you will see some of the issues in the City of Bell, but I have also seen comment about Simi Valley City employees who have a high salary. People should know who is getting paid from their money and how much they are getting paid. It should be easy to find out so that if people find it unacceptable then something can be done about it.

The first thing a City Council member should remember is that they are there to do the will of the people of the city, those who elected them and those who did not vote for them, not their own personal interests nor that of their friends, associates or those who have helped them. I also think that a person should serve their community and then go back to their lives and let someone else serve. We should not have professional politicians. It seems that those who serve too long forget what they are there for and instead start serving those who did not elect them and/or their own personal interests.

It is important to remember that there is no free money. All the money the City gets comes from hard working people and the elected officials have a responsibility to spend the money as the resident want. If money increases, such as when property values went way up, that does not mean that you should spend more.

The City Council has an obligation to information the citizens of Simi Valley all of what they are doing. It should be easy to find out what laws they have passed and what they are doing. Sadly, that does not seem to be the case today.

The issues listed below are no doubt the tip of the iceberg. How do the citizens of Simi Valley find out about all of what the City Council is doing? You can try to keep up by constantly accessing the City's web page, but agendas are not always put far in advance. The new laws seem to only be there for a short period of time before you have to look at the City Code. I know I have seen agenda items regarding the City being sued, but those are in closed door sessions, so I have no idea of what the City has done and what it is costing us.



Index for Save Simi Valley

Written: 08-Dec-2010

Updated: 09-Dec-2010

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