Park proposal on Crummer property by July, Mayor tells youth group

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Presenting a “mini state-of-the city” report to community activists Thursday, Mayor Tom Hasse told the Malibu Youth Coalition the city has been negotiating with state parks head Rusty Arieas and local property owner Roy Crummer about sports fields next to Bluffs Park.

The city hopes to have a proposal ready the beginning of July, Hasse said.

Negotiations between the city and Crummer began last November. At the time, the city wanted Crummer to donate six acres of land next to the existing ballfields at Bluffs Park, in exchange for which the city would approve Crummer’s request to build eight homes on the remainder of the 24-acre site.

The land is currently zoned RR-2, or one home for every two acres. It has sufficient flat ground for two baseball fields, one soccer field and parking.

Even with the city’s blessing, Crummer might not be able to secure approval of the California Coastal Commission. Reportedly, the agency was opposed to the land being used for residential purposes because it is designated as visitor-serving.

Because the state wants to keep Bluffs Park as open space, negotiations have been ongoing between Crummer, the city, and Arieas, head of the state’s Park & Recreation Department. When Areias was in Malibu last summer, someone suggested a deal with Crummer to obtain additional land for ballfields if the Coastal Commission was willing to let the remainder of the Crummer parcel be used for residential purposes.

Development agreement workshops

Speaking to the youth alliance created by education activist Laure Stern, Hasse also announced that Parks and Recreation Commission workshops on Heathercliff Park have been slated for June 21, 22 and 24.

The June 21 and 22 workshops will take place at the Michael Landon Center at Bluffs Park, 7 p.m., while the June 24 meeting will take place at the Malibu Community Center on Point Dume, 9 a.m., Hasse said.

The community can tell the city what amenities and environmental mitigation measures they would like to see for the 19-acre site fronting Pacific Coast Highway near Heathercliff Road. The project includes a community center and three adjacent sports fields, which the community can design, Hasse said.

He urged the group to attend both the Heathercliff Park workshops and the City Council hearings on the proposed long-range development deal with the Malibu Bay Company set for June 27, 28 and July 6.

Copies of the city’s proposed development and donation agreements with the Malibu Bay Company are available at City Hall, Hasse said. Input is needed at both sets of hearings, in order to define a project for an Environmental Impact Report on the proposed Malibu Bay Company deal, Hasse said.

“This is a very important step for the city,” Hasse noted. “The development agreement has been a point of contention for the last few months.”

He urged people to fax or e-mail the city with comments if they cannot attend these hearings.

Hasse also distributed to the group his first Mayor’s Report.

Beginning this month, the report will be posted on the city’s Web site, ci.malibu.ca.us, which has just been improved at a cost of $40,000, Hasse said.

Development initiative, transportation hearings, budget

Continuing with his report, Hasse announced that:

  • An initiative regarding voter approval of future large commercial development has just been filed with the city clerk. It is proposed to be placed on the November ballot.

* People who are concerned about traffic on Pacific Coast Highway or regional air traffic should attend a 2 p.m. June 20 hearing at City Hall, Hasse said. The hearing has been set to solicit public input on the Regional Transportation Plan to be considered by the Southern California Association of Governments. If people fax or e-mail their comments, they will go into the public record, Hasse said.

  • The city is working with supermarkets to develop a program to fund parks and recreation facilities. Under the program, called “Round Up for Kids,” any money on a super market bill rounded up to the nearest dollar is used for parks and recreation. The program is modeled after one done in New York.
  • Previewing the bi-annual budget discussed at Monday’s City Council, Hasse said the city’s General Fund (the city’s discretionary money) is projected for $10.1 million for fiscal year 2001 (July 1, 2000-June 30, 2001) and $9.2 million for fiscal year 2002 (July 1, 2001-June 30, 2002). The difference is explained by a loss of $700,000 in new city status funds from the state. The current reserve is $2 million. About $2 million is owed to the city from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the state’s Office of Emergency Services for natural disasters over the last seven years. The city’s new parking fee should bring in about $165,000–$200,00 this fiscal year, said Hasse, in response to a question by school board candidate Michael Jordan.

The City Council’s fax number is 310.456.3356. Mayor Hasse’s e-mail is thasse@ci.malibu.ca.us