Glendale City Council August 24, 2021
a. Community Development, re: Introduction of an Ordinance to Revoke and Reinstate Title 5 of the Glendale Municipal Code to Update Business Regulations and Business License Procedures —
Council voted unanimously to clean up it’s business license code. It includes a streamlined process, the elimination of some fees, and incentives for early renewal. Some businesses will not be required to obtain licenses going forward, and some businesses will be able to combine multiple licenses into one at reduced costs.
b. Community Development, re: Consideration of updating sign regulations pertaining to animated (digital) signs —
Council voted 4-1 requesting staff to report on allowing animated signs in all of Glendale’s commercial C-3 zones, with specific sign criteria. — (Pay attention Riverside Rancho! Victory Blvd. could look like Melrose Ave. soon.)
c. City Attorney, re: Adoption of a Code of Conduct for the City Council and Members of the City’s Boards and Commissions —
This is the end result of Ara Najarian’s “Winegate” attack on a Design Review Board member. After his failed attempt to get Francesca Smith removed from the DRB for raising a wineglass, the issue evolved into the adoption of a code of conduct for members of council, boards, and commissions. The tangent from Ara Najarian’s concocted ‘scandal’ cost the city time and numerous staff hours, and eventually turned into the discussion of the nuances of what city officials put on their business cards. Though Mr. Najarian made the issue ‘all about appearances,’ an amendment was added to allow officials to drink alcohol at social events while appearing in their official capacity. That’ll come in handy.
In past years, Najarian sat among a former councilmember colleague who reportedly was frequently intoxicated at City Council meetings, some noting liquor on his breath. However, it took the raising of a wineglass by a DRB member with high design standards for him to suddenly become concerned about “appearances.”
Before Council passed the ordinance 5-0, Francesca Smith called in to inquire if there was a provision in the ordinance regarding council members who call speakers or members of the public “cockroach.” This was obviously a reference to the now infamous incident of Ara Najarian calling Mike Mohill a “cockroach.” Najarian’s response was childish, and contained a count of five verifiable lies in a span of less than 30 seconds (please watch for our upcoming ‘lie count’ video of this incident).
As it turns out, there is nothing in the ordinance stating that council members should not call the public “cockroach.” However, since the incident is recorded as clearly as the raising of a wineglass, perhaps a specific reference to usage of the word “cockroach” may be in order!
d. City Attorney, re: Campaign Finance: Updates and Cleanups to Campaign Finance Ordinance, and proposed Matching Funds Program Council voted 4-1 to allow City Council candidates who limit their campaigns to $50,000.00, to receive up to $10,000.00 of taxpayer money in matching funds. Council only gave staff some direction on handling various fees that candidates incur, and ironing out the requirement details that determine how our tax dollars will be doled out to candidates (whether we support them or not). The item will come back to council for a final vote.
By choice, I won’t donate to any political cause until I am satisfied with local government. When/if this passes, I will be donating by default.
Joint CC/Housing Authority Meetings August 24, 2021
Community Development, re: Implementation Process of a Landlord/Tenant Ad-Hoc Committee – Passed
Community Development, re: Discussion and Direction on Consideration of Establishment of a Rental Registry for Multifamily Residential Units in Glendale – Rejected
Formation of a rental registry was rejected. Brought to to the Housing Authority by Dan Brotman, exploration revealed it was overwhelmingly rejected by the public for privacy concerns and complexities that could make it unworkable. Ardy Kassakhian, who previously supported it, abstained from the vote (apparently out of respect to Mr. Brotman). Brotman instead voted against it, demonstrating that he wasn’t ‘married’ to the idea for being his, and indicated that something similar could be brought up at a later date that suits the renting public’s needs better.
There was some apparent friction between council members during this vote as Councilmember Najarian chose to attack Mr. Kassakian for his previous support of the idea. This was yet another example of how Ara Najarian politically attacks council colleagues who work well together without his contributions. However, Mr. Najarian’s animosity toward councilmember Kassakhian goes back to before our last election (and possibly earlier) when he attempted to derail, then City Clerk, Mr. Kassakhian’s campaign for City Council.