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Mayor Tired of Plummer Park Discussion

Mayor John Duran expresses his views on the Plummer Park protest at Monday's City Council meeting, telling members of the Protect Plummer Park movement to be grateful instead.

Mayor John Duran has had enough of the divisive nature of the Protect Plummer Park group. He maintains that people on the East Side have accused the city of treating them like stepchildren and so we are getting a $41 million park and we should be grateful. He implies that enough is enough.  

That's what he said in so many words Monday night from his throne at the City Council meeting. We should be happy our city is in the black (from bonds we floated) in a bad economy and that cities like Vallejo are bankrupt.

We can spend $41 million on an East Side park that will be better and have lots of parking after it has been dug up and renovated, despite the vociferous objections of a dedicated and serious group of citizens who use the park, live next to the park and love the park. This is what he said.  

As a public commenter, I was almost last in the comment queue. And instead of serenely voicing my opinion on this project as I had intended, I directed my comments to Mr. Duran. It wasn't very pleasant.

I noted that under his name is "mayor," not king, oligarch or plutocrat, and that he is a public servant and has been endowed with the trust of the residents. He had earlier joked that he was a lawyer and that he had no conscience and later informed the audience that the council members were in fact politicians (something that Mr. Heilman took exception to and was right) and they were doing what politicians do.  

I pointed out that he used the word first, and I agreed he was a politician and that he had some nerve speaking to the constituency as he had. It's all on video if you want to view the whole meeting. Basically, when it comes to the park issue, the mayor is sick of it all.

I do not regret a single word I said, neither do I feel any differently about Plummer Park. It should be pointed out that Weho had anticipated a grant that would underwrite PP's upgrades. When it fell through, the bond issue was floated.

We do not need the current plan. The park can be upgraded with some work done on it, but certainly not in the sum of $41 million. A compromise can be achieved with dialogue.  

I seriously doubt if any council members actually go to Plummer Park, except for photo ops. It's in a downscale part of this clearly divided city of 34,000. But be grateful nonetheless - John Duran says so and he is a politician - so he knows exactly what he is talking about.

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Chloe Ross November 28, 2011 at 06:26 AM
Your encouragement is wonderful and thanks for letting us know. We haven't gotten tired yet!!!
Geoffrey Buck November 29, 2011 at 06:35 PM
The underground parking plan was put through with no public input. The plan first was be underneath the current parking lot in front of the community center. With Long and great Halls "out of the picture" it was possible to extend the underground parking lot all the way to the tennis courts. The city is not being forthcoming in telling u sthe reason why THEY feel it is necessary to kill our old growth trees, some planted by Major Plummer himself. Why is the Fountain lot not a good compromise? BTW, Protect Plummer Park was never a part of the Occupy Movement.
Rudolf Martin November 30, 2011 at 05:01 AM
is orderly process more important than the residents of west hollywood? jon ponder, you may not know that the few residents that were part of the planning process had repeatedly rejected any suggestions of putting underground parking in the middle of the park. this 'tip of the iceberg' feature was added at the eleventh hour and presented to city council as 'vetted by the community' as jeffrey prang has said. so it is possible to do something 'by the book' and in the process betray the spirit of what the development process is supposed to achieve. i submit to you respectfully that now that there is a growing popular groundswell for changing this plan the city will be pressured to take notice and that is the spirit of democracy as much as due process is. and the 54 old growth trees currently slated to be destroyed as well as the historic character of the park will be gained as well.
Wendy December 07, 2011 at 05:10 PM
It all boils down to politicians making money. If you leave the parks alone the politicians do not get any envelopes stuffed with cash from developers. They don't like citizens cutting them out. It would be better if you can show them a way that they can steal and build something useful for all to enjoy. None of the politicians could get a rat's ass about weho. They are just in it for the money.
Sheila Lightfoot January 23, 2012 at 10:53 PM
Many commenters on recent articles and blogs have focused on the corrupt nature of an entrenched City Hall “process.” If you’d like to dive into the weeds of how the City’s corrupt process is managed, I’d recommend reading 10.D. on the Historic Preservation Commission’s meeting agenda tonight (Monday, Jan 23). Go to http://www.weho.org/index.aspx?page=878 - and click on 10.D. Review of City Projects. You’ll find a transcript and minutes of the 2 Historic Preservation Commission meetings in which the Park Plan, in general, and the historic buildings in the Park, specifically, were allowed virtually “no” critical consideration by the Commission. As you’ll see, the Commission was not only limited in the scope of their input, but the EIR presented facts in a way that were overwhelmingly biased toward a pre-determined outcome for the Plummer Park design desired by City staff and Council. It clearly exposes the shameful maneuvering that has been used to thwart any community opposition to a plan for Plummer Park that virtually everyone hates. This shows what kind of input was actually allowed in all those meetings in which they like to boast the community had a voice. For those of you without the stomach for reading endless details, suffice it to say… it demonstrates how the process is rigged. It is a perfect example of “business as usual” at City Hall… they pre-determine what they want and steer the entire process toward their desired outcome.

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