KBUU News: Internet Campaign Against Skylar Peak Working As Electrician On Houses He Once Voted On Blows Up
Written by 991KBU on April 25, 2023
Malibu Planning Commissioner Skylar Peak makes his living as an electrical contractor.
And Peak .. who served 8 years on the city council … has been appointed to the Planning Commission while he continues to work as an electrician in Malibu.
On social media … over the past 10 days … Peak was attacked for having a supposed conflict of interest. The attacks did not offer any proof that Peak received the work in exchange for his vote – only that he had the temerity to accept an electrical contracting job at a house that he voted on years ago.
Marianne Riggins is the city council member who appointed Peak to the Planning commission … and Monday night … she rejected the claims.
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“There has been some comments on social media that I find quite disturbing.
“There have been some innuendos charged against my appointee to the Planning Commission, Skyler Peak, with regard to things that may have occurred when was a City Council member, and then now as his job a contractor.
“There was four years of separation and different owners on this alleged act that people are commenting commenting about in the community.
“And I find it very very disturbing.”
Riggins said she appointed Peak to the Planning Commission because of his experience and love for the environment.
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“I am proud to have been able to appoint Skyler to the planning commission. He brings a wealth of planning and experience and a love of our community and the environment.
“And I find it very disappointing that there innuendos intact against him.”
Riggins was responding during the city council meeting to charges were made by Jae Flo Katz … a frequent voice on the Nextdoor forum.
In those posts … Katz also attacked KBUU News … for not covering her allegations of conflict of interest as news stories. KBUU had not heard them before she raised them on Nextdoor.
And while her charges and allegations can stand or fail on their own … they were not made public until after Katz blasted KBUU for not reporting them. It is not KBUU’s policy to report on allegations made on social media … particularly allegations that do not stand the scrutiny of analysis.
Further … Katz had several opportunities to make the charges at a public meeting … and apparently sat silent until her attacks on the Nextdoor page … which disparaged KBUU Radio for not immediately publishing her allegations.
As near as we can tell, Katz has not made her charges at any public meeting, where either Peak or Riggins could answer them.
On Monday night … Riggins made clear there is no evidence that Peak’s vote on the project four years earlier … for a different owner … was rewarded with doing an electrical project for a different owner of that house.
But then … Malibu Mayor Bruce Silverstein weighed in.
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“I know no facts about anything that’s going on there, that’s right or wrong.
“But one thing I do know is that we do have now, and in the past, members of the commercial who are contractors or others who’s livelihood depends on development.
“And I have to say I don’t know how anyone who has a livelihood that depends upon development can make truly impartial decisions on any development.
“I don’t see how you can make impartial decisions about making development go forward when you are interpreting codes… when more development means more business in general and less development means less business in general.”
Malibu Mayor Bruce Silverstein.
Over the years … several architects … and real estate agents have been elected to city council or served as planning commissioners in Malibu.
Not to mention lawyers … who often work on land use and zoning matters.
For example … attorney Bruce Silverstein himself dabbled in local land use matters before he ran for city council … such as the Coastal Commission appeal that he filed against a landowner … represented by property owner advocate Don Schmitz … regarding the cement field that Southern California Edison put down on a former vacant plot in central Malibu.
And Silverstein’s hillside house overlooks the entire Civic Center area.
Would that mean every action in the Civic Center is a conflict of interest for a man elected by the voters to represent them? Of course not.
No one has accused Silverstein of conflict of interest … and none exists.