KBUU Newswire Friday Nov 17 – City Hires 4 CHP Cars Per Day On PCH – Santa Anas Will Arrive Sun Night – MRCA Plans $650,000 Murphy Way Takeover And Widening

Written by on November 17, 2023

City Signs Contract To Hire 4 CHP Units Per Day On PCH

The California Highway Patrol will be stationing three patrol officer shifts, plus a sergeant, per day in Malibu soon.

City Manager Steve McClary signed a contract this week to bring the CHP officers to PCH, a $50,000 contract.

Under the state of emergency powers extended by the city council this week, McClary does not need city council approval for this contract.  But Monday, his announcement that such a deal was coming was greeted with approval from the elected officials. 

McClary said Friday he is signing s short-term contract, to get CHP patrols quickly, “while a larger more permanent contract is being developed.”

The new contract calls for $50,000 worth of CHP services, at rate of about $114 per hour for each of the three uniformed officers, and $138 for the sergeant. 

Although the contract has been signed, it is not clear where CHP officers will begin patrolling the highway under it.  CHP officers have already been spotted on PCH, patrolling at state expense, to bolster the extra county sheriff’s deputies on Malibu’s main street,.

Malibu is an unusual city, in that 21 miles of state highway exist within it.  Most cities do not have CHP-jurisdiction roadway, as the CHP only patrols freeways in most cases.

The unusual exception is in unincorporated county areas, where the CHP is responsible for traffic enforcement all roads.   Cities are responsible for streets and highways in their areas, using their local police departments.

Like 44 other cities in Los Angeles County, Malibu hires the county sheriff to be local police. 

Santa Anas Predicted To Blow In Sunday, After Tonight’s Rain

Rain will arrive in Malibu late tonight.

Maybe hard rain.

We could get an inch of rain … according to the National Weather Service … by tomorrow morning.

And Sunday night … a 50 mile per hour Santa Ana windstorm will come right on the heels of this storm ,… probably Sunday night. 

The winds will whip up Sunday night … blowing out of the north at 40 on the beach … 50 in the windiest places … 60 at the very mountaintops.

Caltrans Promises To Reopen 10 Tuesday, As Land Lessees Push Back

The companies that leased the ground under the 10 Freeway in downtown LA is pushing back  against charges from the governor.

They claim that Caltrans conducted annual safety inspections at the site of the 10 Freeway fire over the last 15 years and had not issued any warnings about the flammable materials stacked throughout the property,.

The tenants are accusing Caltrans of making them scapegoats for the disaster.

The LA Daily News reports that the most recent inspection took place Oct. 6, roughly a month before someone set fires that turned the lot under the freeway into an over … that baked and destroyed freeway columns.

A Caltrans P-R officer confirms that the inspections took place. 

He tells the Daily News “Staff also monitor what is placed or stored on site by the tenant. If deficiencies are noted, Caltrans staff notifies the tenant for remedy.”

Did that happen? 

The tenants say no … .  Caltrans never raised any issues with the types of materials being stored or their proximity to the columns supporting the freeway above.

No objection from the state to the stacks of wooden pallets and boxes of alcohol-based hand sanitizer were obvious fire fuel just waiting for fire.

Yesterday … the governor revealed that the freeway deck is not damaged … the columns are being shored up … and the Santa Monica Freeway will fully reopen by next Tuesday at the latest.

Santa Monica Has 4-Way Stop Problem, One Cyclist Killed, Another Hurt

Santa Monica officials have a traffic safety crisis of their own.

Two bicyclists have been hit by cars at the same intersection within a week.

One of them was killed.

The intersection: 19th at Idaho.

And unlike many intersections in Santa Monica … it is not a four-way stop. 

In both cases … the bicyclists were hit by cars that had not come to a stop … because the driver did not have stop signs. 

Speculation is that the bike riders had executed the cars to stop.

The city council has ordered its engineers to analyze putting four way stops in all over Santa Monica.

Or … putting up signs that warn “cross traffic does not stop.”

Santa Monica is also talking about further reducing on -street parking… to remove potential obstacles to lines of sight.

Joe Edmiston Plans To Use Bulldozers To Convert Private Street Into Public Parkway

Joe Edmiston is setting up a 650 thousand dollar project to widen two private streets in the hills above Paradise Cove … to convert them into public parks.

Edmiston is asking one of the agencies that he controls … the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy … to transfer 650 thousand dollars to another agency that he controls … the MRCA … the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority. 

The money would go towards widening the narrow set of connecting driveways that form Winding Way and Murphy Way,

Edmiston claims he has the right to convert the private road into a public highway because LA County built a water tank at the top of Murphy Way in 1998.

His lawyers argue that the Coastal Commission required the county waterworks district to deed over the land above their pipeline … for use as a trail … when the county bought easements from the private landowners for the water pipe.

The landowners point out that they sold rights for an underground pipe … not an above-ground trail … and that the county waterworks department never had any above-ground rights in the first place.

That is a matter for a judge to decide .. it would appear.

But in the meantime … Edmsiton is asking one of his captive board of directors to approve spending 650 thousand dollars in taxpayer money to bulldoze through fences … mailbox … trees and shrubs along the two private roads …

Edmiston does not have any city permits for the new park facility he is building in Malibu … even though the Coastal Commission’s LCP for Malibu would require that. 

But he reasons that its unsafe to ask hikers to move aside for cars.

Remember … these cars are on a private street that the MRCA has ownership rights to that are at best highly questionable. 

Te MRCA as a practice does not respond to news reporter questions about anything … and it finally revealed its plans just yesterday.

Of the 650 thousand dollars he is asking to be transferred … more than one third of that would go to pay for salaries to project management … 

Edmiston … by the way … makes 150 thousand dollars per year in pay and benefits.

The meeting is  at 6-30 Monday night on the Internet.

Nor Cal Electric Company Charges Everyone To Underground Lines In Fire Risk Area

Malibu residents who want their power lines put underground should take a look at the uproar in northern California.

The California public utilities commission has just approved an 11 percent rate hike for P G and E customers … the northern two thirds of the state …

Everyone in the PG and E service area will be paying to put power lines underground in the portions of that service area that are in very high fire risk areas. 

P G and E had asked for a 26 percent increase.

P G and E is betting on underground power lines … but Southern California Edison is not going that route.

Instead. … SCE is putting up plastic covered … insulated power lines for reduce fire hazards.

Much less costly … and SCE says its just a sgood.

The evidence is not in on that.

And some of the overhead plastic equipment has already failed … and is being replaced. 

In order to reduce power pole fires .. Edison is placing plastic covers on insulators.

These are designed to prevent dirt from accumulating on the power pole insulators … dirt that can become moist and cause power to flow into the wooden supports. 

KBUU News has been observing these plastic covers getting ripped to shreds by the wind. 

Last week .. SCE crews were up on poles in the ramirez Canyon area .. replacing the covers.

It’s new technology … and it’s designed to lessen the danger of overhead poles catching fire without expensive underground power line installation.

Las Virgenes To Gain Straw Into Colorado River

The mountains above Malibu nearly ran out of drinking water during the drought that ended last year.

The Las Virgenes water district serves Malibu north of the city limits … plus all the cities along the 101 freeway over the hill.

During the drought… Las Virgenes saw its water deliveries cut back 73% of the water being delivered to Las Virgenes … and customers were put on a drastic water diet. 

Los Virgenes is now looking at desalinization and other long-term water projects as new sources.

But in the meantime… The Metropolitan Water District is constructing new pumps to bring Colorado river water to Los Rehenes when the Sacramento river delta cannot deliver any.

The MWD has approved a $9.8-million contract for new Pump Stations in the San Fernando Valley that will reverse the flow in a huge pipe that loops from the Valley down to Long Beach … and east towards Riverside.

Usually that water flows south … out of the California Aqueduct from Sacramento area.

The pumps will allow reverse flow when there is no Sacramento Delta water … to being in water from the Colorado Rover aqueduct.

Full construction on the Sepulveda Feeder project is expected to begin in late 2024.


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