Statewide Results: Last Tuesday, about 39% of registered voters in California turned out to vote, 3 points below the last Gubernatorial election in 2014. The big news for the night was the defeat of Proposition 10, with 61.7% of voters rejecting the measure. If approved by the voters, Proposition 10 would have repealed the rent control protections of Costa Hawkins, permitting local governments to enact rent control. REALTORS® across the state of California, including CVAR members, dedicated themselves to the defeat of Proposition 10. Those efforts paid off.
Proposition 5, a measure supported by REALTORS® to expand the portability of property taxes, went down in defeat, by a margin of 58.1% to 41.9%.
In the race for governor, Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom won with 59.4% of the vote. Dianne Feinstein retained her U.S. Senate seat with 54.3% of the vote. In the CVAR area, Congressmembers Pete Aguilar (56.1 %), Judy Chu (78.42%), Grace Napolitano (66.7%) and Norma Torres (67.59%) easily prevailed over their challengers. In the 39th Congressional District, where current Congressmember Ed Royce announced his retirement, Young Kim held a slim lead over Gil Cisneros.
In the State Senate seats, Connie Leyva was re-elected to the 20th Senate District with 67.5% of the vote. Susan Rubio prevailed in the 20th Senate District with 52.7% of the vote (the seat was held by Ed Hernandez who was termed out). In the Assembly, incumbent winners include Ian Calderon (57th AD), Ed Chau (49th AD), Phillip Chen (55th AD), Chris Holden (41st AD), Freddie Rodriguez (52nd AD) and Blanca Rubio (48th AD). The 40th AD saw James Ramos prevail with 57.2% of the vote. Los Angeles County saw 37% voter turnout and San Bernardino County a 34% voter turnout.
See below for local community results.
On Oct. 25, the Metro Board of Directors approved $7.8 million for completing environmental studies, plus $16.2 million for advanced conceptual engineering and urban design contracts for environmental studies and engineering to extend the Eastside Gold Line light rail.
The Eastside Gold Line has two chunks of funding approved under Measure M: $3 billion for an initial extension programmed to break ground in 2029 and open in 2035, and a second at $3 billion scheduled to break ground in 2053 and open in 2057. The project has been approved for potential acceleration in Metro’s 28 by 2028 initiative, to complete infrastructure improvements in advance of the 2028 Olympics. Per Metro’s staff report, only one of the two planned alignments would be accelerated.
The current Eastside Gold Line terminates at Atlantic Station on Atlantic Boulevard at Third Street in unincorporated East L.A. There are two alignments for extending the line eastward.
The SR-60 alternative parallels the 60 Freeway through Montebello and Monterey Park, to a terminus in South El Monte. For the most part, the train would run on an aerial structure immediately south of the freeway. Rail stations along freeways tend to be problematic due to car noise and pollution; these sorts of alignments also tend to favor park-and-ride over more desirable transit-oriented development. This northern alignment is further complicated by having to avoid the toxic Operating Industries Inc. Landfill site, located immediately south of the freeway in Monterey Park. In order to avoid the landfill, Metro’s aerial train structures would cross over the freeway, then back again.
The Washington Boulevard alternative goes through unincorporated East L.A., the cities of Montebello, Commerce, Pico Rivera, and Santa Fe Springs to a terminus in Whittier. This alignment includes a nearly 3-mile tunnel below Atlantic Boulevard from 3rd Street to Washington, then rail along Washington mostly at grade, though with some aerial portions. This alignment serves relatively population-dense, low-income, predominantly Latino communities.
Prior to Measure M, it appeared as though Metro might only be able to build one of these two options. This meant jockeying between cities pushing for the alignment that served their populations. With the passage of Measure M, Metro committed to building both alignments and operating them via a central wye junction. The competition persists for which would proceed first.
According to Metro’s timetable, the final EIS/EIR should be completed by 2021-2022. At that point, the project’s engineering is expected to be 15% complete. A showdown over which of the two alignments would proceed first would likely be part of the Metro board approving the EIS/EIR then.
Project acceleration is not a done deal, especially with the current administration dragging its heels on federal transit funding and a repeal initiative underway to trim California transportation funds. Now that the California gas tax survived, depending on how the situation changes in Washington, then Metro may be able to scramble to accelerate building an initial extension.
Brandywine Homes has begun construction on three model homes at Palmera, a 1.52-acre community in Baldwin Park that will offer 23 three-story townhomes. Brandywine plans to open the property for sale in February 2019.
The spacious, contemporary two- to four-bedroom, 2 ½ and 3 ½ bath townhomes will range from approximately 1,242 to 1,737 square feet. These Spanish-style townhomes will include large kitchens with islands and stainless steel appliances, private balconies and decks, dens and master suits with walk-in closets, upscale finishes, dual sinks and separate enclosed showers (in select plans). Palmera will include two barbecue areas with seating.
Located at 14799 W. Badillo St., Baldwin Park, Palmera will offer convenient access to the I-605 and the I-10 as well as the MetroLink. The community is close to Baldwin Park Aquatics Center, Azusa Pacific University and Cal State University, Los Angeles.
Incumbent Mayor Manual Lozano was returned to office on Nov. 6, and will be joined by newcomers Alejandra Avila and Paul C. Hernandez.
In Council District 1, Dr. Paul Rodriguez prevailed over challenger Tyra Weiss to retain his Council seat. In District 2, Mark Hargrove topped a field of 5 to win the seat being vacated by 20-year Councilmember Earl Elrod. In District 3, Marc Lucio won over incumbent Gary George.
Marriott International announced that the TownePlace Suites by Marriott Ontario/Chino Hills, 15881 Pomona Rincon Road, opened for business on Oct. 2, 2018. TownePlace was built for travelers looking for a simple, friendly place to settle-in, keep their routine, and easily connect to the Chino Hills area. Incumbent Councilmembers Ray Marquez (District 1) and Peter Rogers (District 2) were re-elected facing no challenger. In District 4, Brian Johsz retained his seat in a race that included four challengers.
The Claremont Colleges plans to open a medical school, the fourth new campus designed to produce physicians for parts of Southern California struggling with shortages.
The Keck Graduate Institute School of Medicine will focus on primary care and treating the growing Latino population in California, institute officials announced. The school hopes to hire its founding dean by next summer, and open a few years after that.
Administrators hope many of the graduates will stay to practice medicine in eastern Los Angeles County or the Inland Empire, an ethnically diverse region that encompasses Riverside and San Bernardino counties and is home to about 4 million people.
The Keck Institute is part of the Claremont Colleges, a consortium of five undergraduate and two graduate institutions about 35 miles east of Los Angeles. The institute already has a pharmacy school.
The Claremont medical school plans to work closely with community health centers and hospitals in the area, including Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center. Students will be trained to work in teams alongside other providers and to understand the latest on genetics, artificial intelligence and data.
The November election saw Jennifer Stark, Jed Leano and Ed Reece join the Council.
Longtime Covina Councilwoman Peggy Delach resigned on Oct. 23. First elected in March 2003, Delach was elected for four terms on the council. In a statement released on Wednesday, Oct. 24, the city did not say the reason Delach was resigning.
The city intends to fill the vacancy, a term that expires March 2020, by appointment. Applications will be accepted Friday through Nov. 8. Applicants must be 18 years of age or older, a Covina resident and a registered voter. Application forms available on the city website, covinaca.gov, must be submitted to the City Clerk’s Office.
SafeWise, an online safety resource, analyzed California cities to find the 50 safest cities, and Diamond Bar came in at No. 26, out of the Golden State’s 482 municipalities.
Three other San Gabriel Valley towns were in the top 50, including Glendora (39), Temple City (40) and Arcadia (44).
About 62% of cities that made the list came from Southern California. To compile this report, SafeWise analysts reviewed the most recent 2016 FBI crime statistics and census population data. The evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape and robbery) in each city per 1,000 people. If there was a tie, they also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and car theft). Cities that fell below identified population thresholds or failed to submit a complete FBI crime report were excluded from the ranking system.
The safest town in San Gabriel Valley as per the report using 2016 standards, Diamond Bar had 57,162 residents, violent crimes accounted for only 1.15 per 1000 people, and property crimes accounted for 16.29 per 1000. The total crimes for that year were 7.09% violent crime, and 92.91% property related crime, according to the SafeWise analysis.
In election news, the community saw Nancy Lyons and Steve Tye returned to the Council dais. They will be joined by Andrew Chou.
In August, a developer unfurled a banner on the under-construction Palo Verde Apartments at 4704 Peck Road, El Monte, encouraging passersby—especially people in need of affordable housing—to submit their names to a lottery for 23 available units.
The calls quickly started coming in: 700 by the end of the second day and more than 2,000 by the fifth, according to officials from Hollywood Community Housing, which is building the project.
That means before the applicants were vetted based on income qualifications or other factors, those 2,000 callers would each have only around a 1 percent chance at landing one of the one-, two- or three-bedroom apartments—emblematic of just how high the demand for housing is in Southern California.
Even with that philosophy, the small slice of Los Angeles County that is El Monte can only tackle a sliver of the region’s housing needs.
L.A. County needs 568,255 more affordable units just to meet the current demand, according to a California Housing Partnership Corporation study.
Housing is just too expensive, especially for people who earn less than half of the median income: They spend an average of 71% of their incomes on rent. To afford the county’s median monthly rent of $2,400, county renters need to earn $46.15 an hour—more than four times the minimum wage, according to the study.
Nearly 61% of El Monte residents are renters, according to U.S. Census estimates.
City officials gathered at the Peck Road building Oct. 24 for a final walk-through as crews finish the last stretch of construction. The developer hopes the building will be ready for move-in in December.
The building—which features white, brown and black tones and large windows with modern trim—will feature 49 units. Twenty three are designated for low-income families, 25 are for veterans experiencing homelessness and one is reserved for a live-in property manager.
Inside, the naturally lit apartments look out either onto Peck Road and the San Gabriel Mountains or courtyards that will feature community gardens and a playground. The units are painted white with white built-in cabinets and closets and dark hardwood.
The bathrooms are wide and the tubs low to accommodate people who use wheelchairs and some units come ready for people with audiovisual impairments.
Homeless veterans and families will live in side-by-side units. But the veterans will be provided on-site services through a case manager and life-skills training, part of a model known as permanent supportive housing.
On Election Day, Andre Quintero was returned to the mayor’s office. He will be joined by newly elected Councilmembers Maria Morales and Jessica Ancona
HFF has secured $17.1 million in post-acquisition financing for Grand and Alosta, a 70,881-square-foot, newly redeveloped shopping center located in the Southern California community of Glendora.
Anchored by Sprouts Farmers Market and Marshalls, the fully leased property is also home to Orangetheory Fitness, Mattress Firm, Oke Poke, Sherwin-Williams, The Coffee Bean, US Nail and Spa, LA Burgerim and Creamistry.
The November election saw Incumbent Councilmember H. Manual Ortiz returned to office.
XG Communities LLC and the city of La Puente announced that approximately 1,500 street light poles are now available to wireless carriers and technology companies for small cell deployment. The street light poles are available on XG Communities’ Site SeleX Platform (www.siteselex.com).
The city, which recently completed the purchase of 1,500 street light poles from Southern California Edison, partnered with XG communities to acquire the wireless communications expertise needed to properly manage requests from carriers to lease pole assets.
According to officials, the city is in the initial phases of converting the existing high pressure sodium street lights with more energy efficient LED lights to provide better lighting at a reduced cost to residents.
Over the past 3 months, XG Communities has been developing a master plan and preparing the city’s inventory of assets on the Site Selex platform for marketing to wireless providers.
In the November election, Valerie Munoz was easily returned to the Council dais. She will be joined by either former Councilmember Charlie Klinakis or Councilmember David Argudo, who were as of this writing separated by only a few hundred votes.
The city has been informed that Sierra La Verne Country golf course is being marketed for sale, and has made the following information available to address some concerns raised:
The Sierra La Verne Country Club, at 6300 Country Club Drive, is a private, members only, golf course with wedding, dining, and banquet facilities. The golf course originally opened to the public in 1978 as a 9-hole course that was open to the public, later expanding to an 18-hole course and becoming a private country club.
In 1996, the city approved a new Conditional Use Permit for the operation of the golf course and the clubhouse, with specific conditions of approval. This Conditional Use Permit transfers to a new owner automatically, allowing new owners to continue to operate a public or private golf course. The properties that make up the golf course have been sold several times (1988, 1993, 2009, 2014, 2016).
In 2015 a developer was exploring the potential of purchasing Sierra La Verne Country Club and doing an exchange with Los Angeles County’s Marshall Canyon Golf Course, a public facility, with the hope to annex the Marshall Canyon property into La Verne to develop homes there on account of both golf courses were struggling with generating revenues. The City Council, after hearing the concerns of the residents, sent a letter to then-County Supervisor Michael Antonovich indicating that the council did not support such a deal. The county then stopped discussions with the developer. No application was ever submitted to the city for this proposal.
The Sierra La Verne Country Club has a General Plan designation of “Open Space.” The General Plan is the city’s guiding document for the future. Last adopted in 1998, the plan is currently undergoing an update. It is not expected that any changes will be made to the “Open Space” designation within the new General Plan. This designation prohibits any development on the property. The Sierra La Verne Country Club has a zoning designation of “A-1,” or “Agriculture,” which would allow the construction of up to one single-family home for every parcel (Sierra La Verne Country Club is comprised of a total of four parcels), if not for the General Plan designation of “Open Space.”
The company marketing the sale of the properties, the Hoffman Company, has released marketing material which indicates that the properties are ready for residential development. As mentioned above, this is not the case. The city has had inquiries from developers as a result of the marketing materials, and each developer has been told about the restrictions on development.
The city of La Verne has received comments that the property would be allowed to build 110 units (not true) or even 220 units with Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) because of new state law (again, not true). In fact, ADU’s are not permitted in the city’s Hillside Development Overlay Zone due to concerns of being in the very high fire zone. This Hillside Development Overlay Zone covers all properties north of Baseline and east of Wheeler, which would include the Sierra La Verne Country Club. There has also been discussion about several of these ADU’s being built in these neighborhoods today. Some of the structures may be detached guest homes, which differ from ADU’s as they are not permitted to have kitchen facilities, thus prohibiting long-term stays. If you have questions on a specific structure, you may contact the City’s Community Development Department at 909-596-8706 for more information.
The city sent the Hoffman Company a letter on Aug. 14, 2018, indicating the current General Plan and zoning designations, the limitations on development, and that the city would not support the development of the properties.
A developer could file an application to change the General Plan and zoning designations in order to allow development, but that would be an extensive process with full community involvement, thorough environmental studies, and several public hearings before the Planning Commission and City Council, with the City Council ultimately tasked with approving or denying the request. Without the support of city staff and based on the decision made in 2015, it would be unlikely that a developer would be successful requesting a change.
Live music fans will soon have another option when the Canyon Club opens its doors at the Montclair Place mall. The Canyon Club Montclair, located at the west end of the mall in the former food court area, will boast a $1 million audio/video system and have a capacity of 1,300.
It will be a relatively intimate room, with the worst seat just 78 feet from the lip of the stage. Tickets will range from $20 to $58.
The club will also house the Crowdsurfer Café, which will be open daily at 11 a.m. The menu will include burgers, sandwiches, salads and a selection of items with an Asian twist.
The artists booked at the Canyon Club run the gamut, from 1960s hitmakers to Country & Western, swing, blues, jazz and about every musical taste.
Overall, the calendar leans heavily on classic rock from the 1960s forward, but also includes pre-rock performers such as Frankie Valli and Paul Anka, as well as comedy, corporate events and weddings. The first two acts on the Montclair location’s calendar are The Spinners on May 10, 2019, and Herman’s Hermits Aug. 30, 2019.
Los Angeles-based CIM Group took it over in 2010 after the previous owner, General Growth Properties, filed for bankruptcy. CIM is now in the midst of a refresh that will give it a new look and add several new tenants, including the Canyon and a 55,000 square-foot dine-in AMC Theatres location.
The Montclair location is the sixth in a chain of similar-sized venues that the owners have opened since launching the original Canyon Club in Agoura Hills in 2000. Along with his flagship, he also owns The Rose in Pasadena, which opened in 2015, The Canyon Santa Clarita, opened in 2017, and the forthcoming Canyon Montclair. Since 2013 he has been operating (but does not own) the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills, and has been producing concerts at the Libbey Bowl in Ojai since 2016.
The business model is a bit of a throwback: As the concert business has consolidated and become increasingly corporate over the past two decades, independent promoters—long the regional standard in the touring music world—have all but disappeared.
Modern day concert conglomerates such as behemoths Live Nation and AEG, who not only promote the tours but often own the venues and ticket services as well, often include “radius clauses” in artist’s contracts that bar them from performing at other locations within a certain range of their properties. The Canyons regional circuit of clubs in off-the-beaten-path locations both circumvent some of these radius clause restrictions and offer second-tier touring acts the opportunity to play several dates in a Southern California regional circuit.
Though Canyon Montclair will be booking acts from all over the globe, it’s looking to connect with its local audience, including bands, fans and potential employees. Local musicians are encouraged to log on to the website to inquire about getting booked for opening slots.
The Canyon Montclair’s website is at wheremusicmeetsthesoul.com. Local artists that would like to be considered for opening slots can click on wheremusicmeetsthesoul.com/canyon-montclair/openers for info.
The November election saw Councilmember John Dutrey prevail over Councilmember Carolyn Raft to take the mayor’s spot. Incumbent Councilmembers Bill Ruh and Trisha Martinez won in a field of 6 challengers.
Frontier Real Estate Investments, a privately held commercial real estate investment firm, announced that it has broken ground on New Haven Marketplace, a new lifestyle center in Ontario Ranch. The center is designed to serve the master planned community of New Haven in Ontario Ranch, the 34th top-selling new home community in the nation and the sixth in California. New Haven Marketplace is anticipated to open in the fall of 2019, on Ontario Ranch Road between New Haven and Haven Avenues. The center will be anchored by Stater Bros. Market and will include dining, retail and services spanning approximately 95,000 square feet. Confirmed tenants include: Chase Bank, Carl’s Jr., Jersey Mike’s Subs, Dunkin’ Donuts, Kona Cleaners, Pacific Dental Services, and Great Clips.
New Haven Marketplace will pay homage to Ontario’s rich agrarian history with farmhouse-inspired architecture and extensive landscaping. To appeal to Millennials, who represent more than 50% of buyers at New Haven, the Frontier team is placing a special focus on creating communal areas to gather, relax and play, as well as the use of public art to encourage conversation. At its opening, New Haven Marketplace will be near more than 8,500 new homes and apartments programmed and developed by Brookfield Residential, along with other homebuilders.
In election news, the hotly contested mayoral race saw incumbent Paul Leon beat three challengers to retain his seat. Residents also voted to keep Councilmembers Alan Wapner and Jim Bowman.
Axalta, a leading global supplier of liquid and powder coatings, announced the opening of its Learning and Development Center in Pomona. The center is dedicated to industrial wood coatings technology. The facility is a state-of-the-art learning and training environment, complete with a new classroom, conference room, and equipment for hands-on training.
The facility serves the industry’s growing demand for opportunities for customers to collaborate with business partners and further develop their workforce.
Axalta will host various training classes throughout the year, including customized courses that detail the latest technology and applications.
In the elections for City Council, as of this writing, Victor Preciado won the open seat in District 2. Nora Garcia best Incumbent Cristina Carrizosa for the 3rd District Council seat and Steve Lustro won out over Incumbent Councilmember Giina Escobar for District 5.
Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga has announced the opening of international clothing brand Zara, as well as the addition of cold-pressed juice shop Pressed Juicery and blow-dry salon Drybar.
Zara is now open on South Mainstreet, offering clothing and accessories based on the latest trends for men, women, and children over two stories.
Pressed Juicery, whose mission it is to “make high nutrition a realistic option for everyone,” is now open on North Mainstreet. Founded in 2010, the California-born brand has grown to more than 70 locations nationwide, with dozens of locations in Southern California.
Dennis Michael easily retained his spot as Mayor of Rancho Cucamonga. He will be joined on the dais by newcomer Kristine Scott, who won the seat in District 2, and Assemblymember Marc Steinorth, who prevailed over four challengers to win the spot for District 3.
The German grocery store chain Aldi has been aggressively expanding in Southern California since opening its first stores in the region in 2016. The newest store, located in Upland at 349 S. Mountain Ave., opened on Nov. 1. The grocery store differs from typical American groceries: Instead of dozens of competing options for a given item, Aldi typically has only a few options, including its own branded products. Customers also bag their own groceries. Aldi also has locations in Glendora, La Verne and Rancho Cucamonga.
Upland will see two new faces on the City Council, with the election of Ricky Felix to Council District 3 and Rudy Zuniga to Council District 4. They will join returning Councilmember Janice Elliott, who prevailed in District 1.
Bob Pacheco, an incumbent councilmember, and newcomer Marc Saunders prevailed in the Nov. 6 election.
City Treasurer Colleen Rozatti retained her spot, beating Marsha Solorio. Newcomer Letty Lopez topped a field of five candidates to win Council District 2, while another newcomer Dario Castellanos beat incumbent James Toma in District 4. In District 5, Tony Wu bested Fred Sykes.