[Updated] Two Candidates Drop Out of Forum

Candidates Spar in First Council Debate

[Wednesday update] City Council candidates Andy Lyon and Hamish Patterson have withdrawn from a Thursday night Chamber of Commerce/Board of Realtors forum in order to attend the Santa Monica-Malibu Board of Education meeting at Malibu City Hall. 

A third candidate, June Louks, said she plans to attend both the forum and BOE meeting after the forum concludes. City Councilwoman Laura Rosenthal, who is running for re-election, said she plans to do the same. The fifth candidate, Councilman Lou La Monte, did not respond to a request for comment.

[Original post] Due to a Santa Monica-Malibu Board of Education meeting scheduled at the same time on Thursday, three city council candidates this week said they might skip a planned Chamber of Commerce/Board of REALTORS candidates forum at HRL Laboratories.

The forum is scheduled for 6-8 p.m., and the Board of Education meeting is scheduled at 5:30 p.m. at Malibu City Hall. The forum was originally planned to end at 9 p.m., but organizers agreed to shorten it.

Candidates Hamish Patterson and Andy Lyon sent an email to organizers and their fellow candidates on Monday asking that the forum be rescheduled. They want to attend the BOE meeting as a show of solidarity with parents concerned over the environmental scare at Malibu High, Middle School and Juan Cabrillo Elementary.

This Thursday’s BOE meeting is extremely important for our community. Following an extensive effort by a number of concerned groups such as Malibu Unites, the School Board is scheduled to develop the plan that will define how that testing at Malibu Middle and High School will take place…We are committed to the idea of candidate forums and believe they have value. But in this case, we feel it would be irresponsible, and not in the best interest of our community, teachers and children, to engage in a forum,” the candidates wrote.

Candidate June Louks sent a followup email agreeing, and said she would prefer to attend the BOE meeting. 

On Tuesday evening, the Chamber was attempting to gain written confirmation from Supt. Sandra Lyon assuring that public comment at the board meeting will not begin until after 8 p.m., technically giving candidates enough time to get from HRL to City Hall.