Important WISPPA Meeting Saturday

Next meeting of WISPPA and the minutes from the last meeting.


Please Join Us This Saturday, September 8.


9:00 – Conversation and Refreshments
9:30 – Meeting

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South Pasadena City Treasurer, Gary Pia will outline the facts of what the loss of the Utility User’s Tax will mean.
Measure N which would repeal this tax will be on the November ballot.

See Attached Agenda

Also attached are the WISPPA meeting minutes for the June 2nd meeting.

Please review and let us know if any corrections are needed before they are approved at the meeting this Saturday.

MEETING PLACE: South Pasadena Senior Center 1102 Oxley.

Enter at the far right (ramp).

Notice about parking:

The SPUSD lot is usually available for public parking. WISPPA thanks the school district for the use of the lot.

In general, please be aware of the 2 hour parking restrictions around the Library and Senior Center.

The further away from Library and Center, parking restrictions become 3 hours. So again — Read The Signs!

September 8, 2018

9:00 a.m. Conversation & Refreshments
9:30 a.m. Business Meeting
10:10 a.m. Discussion – “It Is All About U, The Utility Tax Takaways”
11:15 Adjournment

MEETING LOCATION: South Pasadena Senior Center 1102 Oxley Street

I. Call to Order (9:30)

II. Introduction of New or Prospective Members and Guests (9:30)

III. Old Business (9:35)

a. Approve Minutes June 2, 2018 meeting – Bianca

IV. New Business (9:35)

a. Board positions for 2019 – Janet Braun

V. Reports (9:40) – Suggest 3 minutes each plus questions/comments
a. Executive Board Report – Bianca
b. Commission Updates – South Pas Commission members
c. City Council Liaison Report – Bianca
d. Miscellaneous other reports & updates

VI. Gary Pia, South Pasadena City Treasurer: “It’s All About U, The Utility Tax Takeaways” – the facts of what the loss of the Utility User’s Tax will mean. (10:00)

VII. Membership Comments, Announcements and Adjournment (11:00 – 11:15)

Next Meeting: Saturday, October 6. League of Women Voters will give a presentation on the CA State propositions that will be on the November ballot.

WISPPA Meeting Minutes 6.2.18
South Pasadena Senior Center “Great Room”
11021/2 Oxley Street, South Pasadena, CA 91030

Attendees: Betty Emirhanian, Ellen Wood, Yvonne Pine, Barbara Sinclair, Judith Harris, Gretchen Robinette, Dollie Chapman, Bianca Richards, Camille Levee, Sally Kilby, Gail Maltun, Kay Mouradian, Ron Rosen, Connie Wardlow,
Ellen Daigle, Lela Bissner, Kelly Koldus, Gloria Kilian, Suzie Abajian, Sean Abajian, Becky Thompson, Lynda Sullivan,
Linda Krausen, Mary Furrero, Michael Caccioti, Diane Crum, Shadi Towfighi, Kim Hughes.

1. Call to Order: 9:02AM by Bianca Richards, President

2. Approval of Minutes: M/S/C to approve minutes of 5.5.18. Minutes approved.

3. Announcements:
a. Exhibition being held of SPHS juried artwork at South Pasadena Gallery tonight from 6-8PM.
b. South Pas Preservation Tour being held on 6.6.18.
c. There was a very successful “Operation Cookie” sponsored by the South Pas Women’s Club,  spearheaded by Beverly Bieber, on 5.23.18.
d. South Pas Beautiful is holding a meeting in the So Pas Library Community Room today from 3-6PM.
e. SPARC is holding a community-wide “Dance Party” at the War Memorial on 6.16.18.
f. Fourth of July WISPPA parade entry: Come to Bianca Richards’ house on the SW corner of Fairview and El Centro participate on the morning of July 4th to help decorate a truck and walk or ride with fellow WISPPA members down the parade route. Meet between 9:30-10AM; parade starts at 11AM.
g. WISPPA Cocktail Party: 6.18.18 at the home of Mary and Bill Urquhart, corner of Monterey Rd. and Chelten Way,
from 6-8PM. WISPPA needs people to sign up for food donations and to help with clean up. See or e-mail Betty Emirhanian.
h. Barbara Sinclair announced that the new director of Pasadena Playhouse had been in touch with her. She wanted to arrange an evening with him speaking before a WISPPA group or perhaps, a WISPPA night to go to a play there together with arranging a possible group discount. The decision made was for Barbara to gather more info and
report back at another meeting.
i. Tuesday 6.5.18 is Election Day! Don’t forget to vote! Polls are open from 6AM-8PM. Election laws such as “no electioneering” in front of polling places will be strictly enforced.

4. Commission Reports:
A. Public Works, Kim Hughes
1. Road repairs-a list of road repairs is being compiled. A road that gets approved to be on the list is repaired a year later.
2. $3,000,000 has been allocated for roads; $300,000 just for repairs-a generous amount compared to $8.000 formerly allocated
3. Roads on the list include but are not limited to: Monterey Rd., Alta Vista, Camino Del Sol, Pine St., Sterling Place, Orange Gove, Diamond.
4. The “Public Works” Commission is due to “sunset;” to be merged with the “Transportation Commission.” The “Public Works” is an important commission on its own. Everyone who wants this as a separate commission needs to write to City Council.

B. Safety. Ellen Daigle
1. Electric bikes that go into the hills and can cover the city are being purchased for SPPD officers.
2. Crime down 5%.
3. Cert Training hosted for school district faculty.
4. There was a SPFD regional training—brush and high rise training
5. SP Public Safety Commission is instituting a registry for older adults to register their medical conditions and contact info
for the city to make sure they are safe in cases of emergencies.

C. Finance Report, Ellen Wood
1. Changes are transpiring in the finance department; finance director left, and the new city manager is examining records.
2. Discoveries are being made re: the fact that things have not been done in the department as effectively and efficiently as they should have been; i.e. there needed to be updates in software used which will be done, etc.
3. Schedule of city fees has not been raised in years; thus it will be raised 10.51%.
4. Draft budget is out for next year; it is online. Recommended that WISPPA members look at it.
Page 2 of WISPPA Meeting Minutes of 6.2.18

C. Finance Report by Ellen Wood continued:
5. City needs to find revenue due to PERS retirement funding issue—PERS investments have earned less than expected and the city needs to come up with funds to “fill the gap” between PERS earnings and the amounts owed employees to fund their retirement pensions. This will be an extra burden on the city.

D. UUT Report, Betty Emirhanian
1. UUT ballot measure coming up in the November, 2018 election is a measure to repeal the city’s utility tax. The measure is worded so as to be confusing; voting “yes” means voting to repeal it; voting “no” means voting NOT to repeal it.
2. The funds from the UUT are critical to the city; if repealed 12.5% of the city’s total budget would need to be cut, all departments would be affected, and all cuts would be instituted the day following the election.
3. The funds from the UUT are especially critical because of the shortfall in pension funding that is now the burden of the city.
4. A “Citizens Committee” is being formed to spear-head encouraging voters NOT to repeal the UUT. Ed Donnelly of
The So Pas “Dads” group is chairing the committee.

D. Natural Resources Commission, Betty Emirhanian. Nancy Wilms who served as the “WISPPA liaison” to the “Natural Resources Commission” is terming out as a commissioner this year.

E. Planning Commission, Kelly Koldus
1. General Plan: more time will be spent on the General Plan as it has expanded its scope to do outreach to look at the issue of affordable housing. The General Plan is still taking comments. E-mail David Watson with comments.
2. Twoey’s Restaurant is being developed at the former site of Carmine’s and Craft Hill Brewery on Fair Oaks in the OSH shopping center. It is due to open in fall, 2018.
3. The Arco gas station on Orange Grove and Mission is re-starting their car repair shop.
4. Other than Twoey’s and Arco, not many “use” permits have been applied for or issued.
5. Discussion about development of Carrow’s Property: the family that owns the property wants a “mixed use” development there with shops, restaurants, “on grade” parking, and an adobe courtyard with water features.

E. Water Report, Bianca Richards
The “yellowish-colored” water issue is still going on. The color is due to iron in the water. The city has responded well and found that there is no lead, arsenic, or magnesium in the water.

5. Synopsis notes of the WISPPA Membership “Open Forum” Discussion, “Where is WISPPA Headed in the Future?”
prepared by Bianca Richards and Betty Emirhanian are included with these below.
The most significant change that arose out of the discussion is a meeting time change of ½ hour going forward: WISPPA will meet at 9AM for a half hour of food and socializing, and meetings will start at 9:30AM.

6. Meeting adjournment by Bianca Richards at 11:15AM.

Minutes respectfully submitted by Judith M. Harris, WISPPA Secretary

June 2, 2018 WISPPA Meeting Discussion
Questions, discussion and input:
1. Sustainability
• Engaged discussions around theme of Sustainability
• WISPPA not in crisis but growing pains (Gretchen Robinette metaphor)
• We have achieved many goals but things change and we must continue to work on them.
• Reach out to younger people, seniors, more diversity needed
• Have social events outside of regular meetings particularly in the summer to bring in new people and to create camaraderie.
• Problem – Too few people doing the majority of the work. Suggestions: circulate list of things to be done. Don’t be reluctant to ask members. Create committees.

2. We have recently had program themes like Homelessness and Cinco de Mayo. What programs/concerns would you like WISPPA to address?
• Some members said that our main focus should be on women and issues related to South Pasadena
• School District, education -not a consensus issue. We should not focus on SPUSD as there are a number of other groups in South Pasadena that cover those issues. It would be a duplication
• Need to concentrate on major issues that affect residents and are city related
• Expand issues – issues and actions can come out of things raised in the business reports
• Need programs to bring in people

3. Should there be both a formal program and a General Business meeting with reports every time we meet?                                                                                                  • It is ok to have a business meeting only with no speaker (occasionally). (No consensus on alternating speaker programs with business meetings)
• Need to follow goals when planning speakers.
• No duplications of issues that other organizations can cover
• Need speakers on important, necessary issues facing city.
• Need Time limit for speaker/s and panels
• Program of importance could be a separate event at different time (evenings)

4. How important are the city council and commission reports to you? What information should we be emphasizing?
• Consensus: Do not cut back on business reports
• Keep Reports from Commissions-report out key points and in writing so can be incorporated into minutes. It was decided that these reports should be limited to no more than 4 most pertinent points.
• The membership would also like to have an executive meeting report. Key purpose-find out what is going on
• Continue City Council report outs with edits-hit key items

5. How many meetings a year should we have? Every month with 3 dark months as we do now? Could we meet 6 times a year?
• The membership likes a meeting every month with July, August and December dark.

6. Does the time of meetings, first Saturday of the month at 9am, work best? Alternate suggestions?
• Voted on –new meeting times-9:00-9:30am social time;
9:30 meeting starts

7. Do you like the Weekly WISPPA Newsletter and want that to continue?
• Overwhelming agreed – all want Newsletter to continue.