Ben Tansey

Ben Tansey
313 POSTS 0 COMMENTS
Ben Tansey is a journalist and author. He grew up in the South Bay and is a graduate of Evergreen State College. He worked in Washington State as a reporter in a rural timber community and for many years as an editor for a Western electric energy policy publication based in Seattle.

New Mayor | Cacciotti Takes Over as Mayor as City’s To-Do List Expands

District 4 City Council Member Michael Cacciotti, the longest-serving South Pasadena City Council Member, was elected Mayor Wednesday on a unanimous vote of his Council Colleagues. The 2021-2022 mayoral term will be Cacciotti’s fifth...

Increased Crime Along Transit Lines | South Pasadena Opposes “Defunding Law Enforcement”

The South Pasadena City Council on Wednesday unanimously approved a letter opposing a proposal before the LA County Metropolitan Transportation Authority that, according to a city staff report, calls for “defunding law enforcement and...

Firefighter Reinstatement | City of South Pasadena Delaying, Haggling Over Court Ordered Payment

Nearly six months after the California Supreme Court put the kibosh on South Pasadena’s five-year battle to defend its illegal termination of the president of its firefighters’ union, the city is still haggling over...

Public Works Director on Leave Effective Immediately | South Pasadena

Shahid Abbas, who has served as South Pasadena Public Works Director since 2019, is on leave and Deputy Public Works Director Harold Theodore (“Ted”) Gerber has been named acting director of the department, the...

City Urged to Forego Recovery of Tax Revenue Scammed by SCE

Seeking to come to terms with a mixed appeal court ruling, South Pasadena City Manager Arminé Chaparyan this week is asking the City Council to “take action” to forego recovery of at least quarter...

City to Sell $352,000 of Bonds

Following a recommendation from its Finance Commission, the South Pasadena City Council on Oct. 20 voted 4 to 1 to amend its investment policy to divest from “businesses that refine and/or extract oil or...

BLM Protesters Sue City of South Pasadena Over Police Treatment

Two South Pasadenans who say their rights were violated by South Pasadena police officer have filed a lawsuit against the city and five of its police officers for “fail to carry out their mandatory...

Police Department Affirms Plans for ‘Organizational Assessment’

In what appears to be a response to public pressure, the South Pasadena Police Department last Friday announced an expansion to the scope of City Manager Arminé Chaparyan’s plan for an “organizational assessment” of...

“Unpermitted” SCE Utility Work in City’s Crosshairs

"Unpermitted", noise-ordinance-violating utility work around town by Southern California Edison is a “recurring” problem that “is absolutely getting more serious,” according to Mayor Diana Mahmud.  The matter came up during the Oct. 7 council...

New Caltrans Houses Bill | Concerns Over Fair Process

With the Sept. 28 governor’s approval of SB 381, the city on Wednesday sought to get rolling on its ambitious plan to use its new authority exercise more control over the disposition of dozens...

Caltrans Properties | Governor Newsom Signs Landmark South Pasadena Housing Bill

In a major victory for South Pasadena Mayor Diana Mahmud, Governor Newsom on Tuesday signed SB 381, a city-sponsored bill authored by Sen. Anthony Portantino amending the Roberti Act’s provisions on the disposition of...

City Council | Community Advocates Push for Racial Bias Assessment

Public speakers on Wednesday demanded the city include racial bias as part of an assessment City Manager Arminé Chaparyan intends to commission on the city’s police department. The demand was echoed in written statements,...

Caltrans Properties | City’s Plan to Acquire Homes Now Requires Governor Approval

The City of South Pasadena’s grand plan to take control of Caltrans’ properties in town is on the verge of fruition after a flurry of last minute legislative activity. In less than 24 hours,...

$80 Million Credit Deal Signed | CPA to Add More Solar

The Clean Power Alliance this month added over 300 megawatts of solar generating capacity to its growing profile of long-term renewable power resources. Directors said the community choice aggregator, the largest in the state,...

Animal Commission | City Council to Discuss Future at Next Meeting

The South Pasadena City Council on Wednesday will take on the controversial subject of the future of its moribund Animal Commission. Staff has not made a recommendation, but is looking for guidance from the...

South Pasadena Care Center Lawsuit | New Claims Allege Enrichment Scheme Injured Residents

In the latest lawsuit filed against the South Pasadena Care Center, the family of the late Michael Steven Paz says he suffered “injuries and death” as a “direct result of the chronic understaffing” at...

City Repurposes Grant Money for Traffic Work

The City Council on Wednesday approved spending $65,000 for a traffic study of Mission St. and Meridian Ave. It also authorized spending up to $168,000 on a “slow streets” program. Another $150,00 was at...
Attorney Highsmith South Pasadena

Teresa Highsmith Steps Aside | South Pasadena City Attorney Changes

After nearly two years of controversy surrounding its City Attorney, South Pasadena’s City Council on Wednesday is set to re-designate Teresa L. Highsmith to the role of Assistant City Attorney and to promote current...
Caltrans homes South Pasadena

Caltrans Housing Bill | SB-381 Heads to Assembly Floor for Approval

The city of South Pasadena’s bill to encourage the sale of up to 68 Caltrans properties in town was unanimously approved without amendment Thursday by the Assembly’s Appropriations committee. "The City is pleased that SB-381...

City’s Legal Billings Significantly Increased | Invoices Reviewed

South Pasadena Council Member Jon Primuth during Wednesday’s Council meeting expressed confidence the city is getting good value for the money it is spending for legal services from the firm of city attorney Teresa...

New Stop Signs on Oak & Meridian Intersection | Neighbors Rejoice Over Installation

After lobbying for two decades, neighbors celebrated Tuesday, August 10, when the city at last installed stop signs for both north and southbound traffic along Meridian Ave. at Oak St.. It’s the only place along...

UPDATE: ‘Clean Power Alliance’ Battle Ongoing | Disagreement Over Millions in Electric Rates

Originally published on August 6, 2021. Updated to include statements from Mayor Diana Mahmud. South Pasadena’s electric ratepayers, its mayor, state senator and assembly member are at the center of an ongoing battle in the...

Police Dog Incident | SPPD Chief Solinksy Addresses the Issue

A legally blind, 5-year boy was bitten in the face by a police narcotics dog Tuesday evening just before a SouthPasadena Police Department canine demonstration at Orange Grove Park during the annual National Night...

South Pasadena City Attorney Highsmith Absent from Council Meetings

Over the past few months, South Pasadena City Attorney Teresa L. Highsmith has been conspicuously absent from the City Council’s regular meetings. Her last appearance was May 5, and in each of the five...

20 Years in The Making | A Stop Sign on Oak & Meridian

Audience applause broke out when the South Pasadena City Council voted unanimously Wednesday evening to install stop signs at the three-way intersection of Meridian Ave. and Oak St. The seemingly minor action was the...

City Finances | Auditor Finds Fewer Material Weakness, Significant Deficiencies for South Pasadena

There were three “material weaknesses” and two “significant deficiencies” in the City of South Pasadena’s fiscal 2019-20 financial documents, the city’s auditor said in a letter July 15. The City agrees with the findings...

City Council Plans Next Step in $6.3 Million Caltrans Property Takeover

Anticipating success in its ambitious strategy to take control over the future of up to 68 Caltrans properties in South Pasadena, the City Council on Wednesday is poised to authorize the next step. If...
CalTrans

Caltrans Properties | 350 Agencies Contacted: “Request for Interest” in Purchasing

UDPATED 7-19-2021: After nearly six months, Caltrans has yet to respond to a dozen public and private housing developers who answered the agency’s request for ideas on how to deal with 47 properties it owns...

South Pasadena Planning Department Gets Some Crucial Attention

The South Pasadena City Council approved multiple actions last Wednesday to help address chokepoints in the processing of Planning Department procedures that have become an increasing source of complaints from residents and developers. Last month...

626 Prospect Ave Sale | Court Blocks Caltrans Sale to Pasadena Church

The City of South Pasadena on Thursday won a preliminary injunction preventing Caltrans from selling its 12-unit residential property at 626 Prospect Avenue to a church in Pasadena. LA Superior Court Judge Mary H. Strobel...
South Pasadena
clear sky
90.9 ° F
98 °
76.6 °
38 %
2.9mph
0 %
Sun
93 °
Mon
95 °
Tue
94 °
Wed
93 °
Thu
95 °