More PCBs at MHS – SMMUSD Probe Finds Board Member Voted 9 Times To Benefit Husband


PCBs are found in another classroom at Malibu High .

No exposure to students … says the district …

But some teachers request to be moved out of that building.

A school district report concludes a board member voted 9 times on contracts that benefitted her pocket book.

But the Santa Monica school board circles the wagons around Maria Leon-Vazquez.

This is Malibu’s only local daily news.

It’s the   ((((  time  ))) edition of the (((  day ))) news … from Radio Malibu  ….

99 point 1 K B U U.

Good morning, Portshead Road, I’m Hans Laetz reporting.

A Santa Monica Malibu school district report says board member Maria Leon-Vazquez voted nine times on deals that benefitted her family’s income …. leading fellow board member Craig Foster to suggest she resign.

More on that in a moment .. but first …

PCB Detected At Current Classroom Areas at Malibu High

Small amounts of cancer causing PCB have now been detected in additional classrooms at Malibu High School.

The PCB is sealed … underneath floor tile in the two-story classroom structure D … still used by students at Malibu High.

That’s the two story building with the painted sharks on it.

Also … PCB had been found in the varnish on walls made of plywood in the wood shop.

District construction chief Carey Upton tells KBUU News there is no PCB exposure to people still using those classrooms.


“We have done extensive tests — sampling air, and wipe samples — to make sure there is not an exposure.

“Because that’s where the PCBs are dangerous …  is when you can get them into your body    somehow by either breathing them … or through dust … through touching ingesting them.

“And we have a long dataset of four years of testing every major use space … most of them tested two to three times … to demonstrate that the buildings are safe for us to occupy.”  [[[   END QUOTE   ]]]

Several teachers this week have asked for … and been granted … requests to move put of that wing.

Cary says the 86 million dollar reconstruction of the school is on hold …

NEWSCART 77445   CAREY BBB  :14  “We don’t yet know how we are going to manage this and what the recommendation is from the EPA so we went to be discussed discussed to develop the appropriate plan.”

Parent activist Jennifer DeNicola says her two children are in the classrooms …. and says the 1960s construction at Malibu High is not unusual to contain PCBs used in the buildings.


“This is typical.

“I mean, schools all over have found this in the …. you know as an adhesive … and it has gotten into the concrete.

“There is protocol for it.

You can read about it in the E P A documents, so I do not know what direction they’re waiting for.”

DeNicola says she is most concerned about one classroom … the wood shop … that has PCB detected in varnish used on plywood walls back in the 1960s.

But the district stresses that it has been conducting surface tests and tests of air in those buildings and has found no detectable PCBs.


You are listening to the latest news from Radio Malibu … 99 point 1 K B U U.  ((( time  ))))

SMMUSD Concludes Board Member Voted 9 Times To Benefit Husband, Foster Suggests Leon-Vazquez resign

School board member Craig Foster last night asked fellow board member Maria Leon-Vazquez to resign, for voting on contracts that benefitted her family bank account.

That comes as the district released part — but not all — of the report from outside lawyers …. investigating conflict of interest actions first reported by the Los Angeles Times.

The district’s self-probe found that Maria Leon-Vazquez voted yes on contracts without announcing that her husband could benefit financially … and without abstaining on the votes.

That led Foster … the only representative from Malibu … to conclude at last night’s board meeting that ….

NEWSCART 774398FOSTER AAAAA  :13 QQQQ: had a financial interest.

“… there are indisputable facts that in one particular case, Maria Leon-Vazquez, points to  a clear set of facts that involves voting on things for which her family had a financial interest.”  [[[   END QUOTE  ]]]]

And that .. Foster says … is a violation of the trust placed by voters … in the school board.


“I think that with the pattern of facts that we have, I would suggest to Maria, who has been on the board 18 years, that this would be a good time to retire.” [[[   END QUOTE  ]]]]

Foster’s conclusion was immediately challenged by board member Laurie Lieberman.

She says the school district agendas are long and complicated … and that all board members sometimes vote on things that they do not understand.

NEWSCART 77440 LIEBERMAN :19  QQQQ: careful and discreet.

“Before we ask them to resign over allegations that … about which -we- have a very limited amount of knowledge and evidence … I think you need to be more careful .. and discreet.”   [[[  END QUOTE    ]]]]

Although Lieberman said the board had limited knowledge of the facts … the lawyer’s report in front of her states plainly that Maria Leon-Vazquez voted nine times on contracts that benefitted her family. 

Last night … the district president took full credit for what he called full transparency  ,… in releasing that report …

But one Malibu parent noted that the district was withholding their lawyers’ legal conclusions about the apparently illegal votes.

Kevin Shenkman:


“So we get some piece of an investigation, but as the public, but we don’t get the whole thing.

“That’s not transparency.”

As for Maria Leon-Vazquez … she sat through the meeting grim faced … and said nothing as her resignation was requested.

That’s probably smart … the L-A County Attorney’s Office and the California Fair Political Practices Commission are both investigating her votes.

101 Still Closed, Malibu Wants You To Register Cellphone

The 1-0-1 Freeway remains closed in Santa Barbara today … Monday is still the estimated reopening date.

Many of the people trapped in the deadly mudflow complained of getting no warnings of the oncoming deadly mud in the middle of the night.

The City of Malibu has a voluntary system …. where residents can sign up to have their cellphones turn on with loud warnings … when disaster is coming.

The city will conduct a test of that system next month … February 7th.

Information on signing up … or opting out … is at the city’s website.

Car Goes Over Side In Malibu Canyon

 A car plunged about 200 feet over the side of Malibu Canyon Road on Thursday, injuring the driver.

The victim was trapped in the vehicle, which ended up on its roof following the crash about 3:30 p.m. just south of the tunnel, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Rescuers reached and freed the trapped victim, who was airlifted to a trauma center, the fire department reported.

His condition was not immediately available.

MRCA Turns Private Driveway Into Public Park Accessway

Finally this morning … there’s a small legal ad in the Malibu Times this week.

In it … Joe Edmiston declares war on a Malibu neighborhood.

One of the interlocking government agencies controlled by Joe Edmiston … the parks czar … is the Mountain Recreation and Conservation Authority.

And it is announcing that it is opening the trailhead in Escondido Canyon to public use.

The trailhead is reached by a private road … narrow …. no sidewalks … no parking … and no bathrooms.

No gate to control access at night.

In other words … the MRCA is setting up another Winding Way fiasco.

Few will argue that the idea of opening up the backcountry to public recreation is a bad idea.

But Edmiston’s agencies have a track record that is an absolute disgrace.

Toilet paper in the bushes … trash on the trail … barbecues and late night trespassers.

That’s what Edmiston and his agency have created along the Malibu coast.

Now … he’s bent on doing it again … this time in Escondido Canyon.

Some resident have fought Edmiston’s efforts like this in other places … like Ramirez Canyon … and won.

Other have to put up with dangerous conditions and wrecked parks … like on Winding Way.

We’ve asked Edmiston’s agency for comment.

As usual …. they don’t talk to Malibu people.


Traffic …


Weather for the Malibu ….

A 20 percent chance of showers before 10am.

It will be ((((  cool and windy   )))) today … highs around  ((((   63    )))) degrees today on the beach … ((((    62   )))) in the mountains above Malibu.

Winds will be strong .

Downcoast winds will be   (((   30  )))) miles per hour this afternoon.

Sunset tonight is at   ((((    5:09   )))).

After that … expect it to be (((   cold …. really cold   )))) tonight … a low of  ((((   46    )))) on the beach … down to  ((((   36   )))) in the local mountains.

Tomorrow should be   ((((   mostly sunny and cool … high 62   )))).

Right now … at Trancas it’s ((((    59     )))) degrees.

In upper Malibu Canyon … ((((    50     )))) .

And at Civic Center Los Angeles … ((((   60    )))).

Surf is expected to average 8 to 12 feet today and early tonight.

Sets to 15 feet are possible at exposed locations such as Point Dume.

High surf will slowly subside late tonight through Saturday evening.

In the ocean … it’s ((((    56   )))) degrees in the water at Zuma Beach.

The lifeguards say the waves today are   ((((   5 to 8 )))) feet high ….

((((    Potential new long period WNW-W swell quickly builds in and peaks.

Strong NW winds building throughout the day.))))

(((((   High tide … five and a half feet … is at   9:49 AM.

Low tide is at 4:56.

A secondary high tide arrives at 11:28 PM .  ))))


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