News Briefs

Upon learning that pine trees are highly flammable and worried about future brush fires, Myrna Katz, who lives Ocean View Drive adjacent to property owned by the county Department of Public Works says she has asked the agency since February to cut back those on its property. She was allegedly promised by local waterworks Superintendent Art Schimke that such action would be taken by October. The trees branches hang over her property. No tree trimming has yet occurred. Schimke has not returned numerous phone calls and messages from The Malibu Times.

State to hold septic tank monitoring workshops

A community workshop on new proposed statewide septic system regulations will take place Jan. 15 at Malibu High School.

The State of California Water Resources Control Board is moving forward with Assembly Bill 885, which is intended to provide regulations on a statewide level for the monitoring of onsite wastewater treatment systems, commonly referred to as septic tank systems. All properties in Malibu would be subject to the terms of the new law. The draft regulations, which are written to protect residents’ water supplies, would require mandatory septic tank inspections and groundwater analyses for existing septic tank owners every five years, and minimum design, construction and operation standards for new septic systems to protect water quality.

The SWRCB is presenting a number of community workshops throughout the state, including the one in Malibu, Jan. 15 at 7 p.m. at Malibu High School, 30215 Morningview Dr. More information can be obtained by calling 916.341.5518.

SMMUSD appoints new chair

Longtime Malibu resident Pam Brady was elected as the new chair of the Personnel Commission for the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District at the commissions Dec. 2 regular meeting.

Brady has served as a Personnel Commissioner for six years and has been an active proponent of the merit system. She was elected in 1990 to the District Board of Education, serving 12 years as a board member. Jack O’Connell, superintendent of Public Instruction, appointed Brady as PTA president at the 2007 Annual PTA Convention. Brady is currently serving as the president of the California State PTA, and also works as a community mobilization manager for the American Cancer Society. She holds a bachelor of science in business administration and was recognized as “Woman of the Year” by the YMCA and the California State Assembly.

Brady said she aims to deepen collaborative relationships with the community, the district, the Board of Education and SEIU in order to maintain excellence in education in district schools and opportunity for all students and employees.

PCH closures

Caltrans will be scheduling lane closures during the week of Dec. 15 for roadway repairs of Pacific Coast Highway near Carbon Beach. Specific locations and times of the closures will be posted on the City of Malibu Web site upon receipt of advisement from Caltrans. More information can be obtained by visiting

Count to end homelessness

The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, or LAHSA, will be conducting the 2009 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count on the nights of Jan. 27-29. LAHSA is looking to recruit more than 3,000 volunteers to help count homeless individuals and families residing on the streets, in shelters and in institutions. This will be the largest homeless census in the nation.

Data from the count will be used to demonstrate this region’s need for federal funding, raise public awareness about homelessness, identify the needs of homeless populations and help target the housing and services necessary to prevent and end homelessness in the Los Angeles area.

More information can be obtained by calling 213.689.4096

Plastic bag ban begins this month

The city’s banning of plastic bags for grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants and any events conducted on city property will take effect Dec. 27. Failure to comply will result in a fee. Retail establishments will comply with the ban starting in June.

MHS safety meeting

A safety meeting was held Thursday morning at Malibu High school to discuss the traffic in the Malibu Park area and how the school’s remodeling plans will cater to fixing it. Meeting attendees included MHS principal Mark Kelly, Juan Cabrillo principal Barry Yates, two to three traffic consultants, Sgt Phil Brooks, a school district-hired traffic engineering firm, city architects, and members of the MPSC and the PTA, said Carol Randall, Chair of Public Safety Commission.

Randall said a traffic engineer proposed putting a stoplight on Guernsey Road, but that part of the problem is what traffic consultants call “K turns,” or 3 point turns.

Hans Laetz, a Guernsey resident, also attended the meeting and said implementing a light at Guernsey was considered 8 years ago, but Caltrans said the road would have had to be redone and that it would have been very complicated.

“That was eight years ago,” Randall said. “There are all sorts of lots that weren’t buildable that now are.”

Randall added that the meeting included discussion of a 110 space parking lot on the east end of the school, and that the majority of the attendees are in favor of prohibiting parking on either side of Morningview Drive, and designating a “green line” portion of the lane for drop offs only.

-Olivia Damavandi