Marina Lease Approvals Lack Transparency
Thanks for a great article on the meeting about the proposed wetlands park next to the hotels being built on Via Marina. However, I believe there is a much bigger story regarding the lack of transparency for the proposed new hotel complex next door.
If I were meeting with county policymakers, I would ask the following:
Please disclose all conflicts of interest, including your relationship to the developers. What ethics rules must the L.A. County Board of Supervisors follow regarding conflicts of interest, and are there any real penalties for breaking them?
Please make available a copy of the proposed lease agreement. What public notice has there been as to the lease terms?
What other potential lessees were contacted about the availability of this property, and how was it advertised? Were there other bidders?
This whole process should be tabled until 60 days after the proposed lease has been made widely available to the public. How can this lease be legally approved without broad public disclosure of the proposed lease document?
Why is the board so anxious to approve this project when a majority of the residents nearby seem to strongly object?
Marina del Rey
Delay Wetlands Park for El Niño
The county plan calls for “clearing and grubbing” of the site at Via Marina and Tahiti Way by Dec. 22. Clearing is the cutting down of all trees, including the willows. Grubbing entails the removal of the layer of the soil that contains all the roots.
All that will be left on the site is exposed dirt, with nothing in place to help rainwater and runoff soak into the soil — and nothing to help keep the resulting muck contained within the site, either.
The article downplayed attendees’ deep concern about destruction of this wetland just as the largest El Niño in living memory is about to strike. It also neglected to report that attendees repeatedly and pointedly pressed county planning specialist Michael Tripp to convey the community’s request to the Board of Supervisors to postpone destruction of the wetland until after this “Godzilla” El Niño (as The Argonaut’s Nov. 5 cover story put it ) so our community can retain the flood-control benefits of the wetland. As it is now, the land would act as a huge sponge and lessen the risk of flooding for hundreds of surrounding apartment buildings, condos and houses.
Why is the county casting public safety aside by rushing this project just as El Niño is about to strike, while at the same time urging Marina del Rey lessees to spend money and energy on flood control preparations?
Nancy Vernon Marino
We ARE Marina del Rey FROM THE WEB:
Piece-mealing projects through the approvals process is not allowed under CEQA and the county is perpetrating a lie with its Orwellian language by calling it a “wetlands park.” Nowhere in the world is there such a thing as a wetlands park. The Army Corps of Engineers does not have that description and it is not a legal name description of land anywhere. Even their own biologist said it was a unique project.
Los Angeles County has for 11 years refused to allow an independent biologist to have access to the land. What are they hiding? LA County is taking redevelopment fees designated for park conversion of parking lots like Parcel FF and using it to help a private developer accomplish his goal. That is probably one reason for the county to call it a park.
The county has a long history of deceiving the public and never once have they listened to it. The problem we have is that our supervisor takes campaign money from developers. Thank God he is termed-out soon. His legacy will live forever in infamy.
Hans Etter, Marina del Rey
Anyone who has lived in Marina del Rey for the past few years has certainly noticed an increase in traffic, with many of these cars seemingly uncertain of where they’re going. As a result it has become a major project to get around anymore.
It also appears construction crews have abandoned whatever umpteenth road project they were working on. There hasn’t been a crew siting around here for a number of months now. Instead, what we’re left with is an unrepaired road with metal grates that either limit traffic to one lane or risk tire damage to your car. (Not to mention all the dingers on the car from previous road construction projects.)
Every time I pass the proposed site of two more Marriott hotels (we already have one on Via Marina and Admiralty Way), I can’t help but shake my head. Maybe they should finish fixing the roads before worrying about building more hotels that we don’t want or need.
I don’t care what L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe wants. This is Marina del Rey, not Marriott del Rey.
Fix the damn streets already!
Marina del Rey