Potential Candidates for Malibu City Council Seats Begin Pulling Papers
• Five Hopefuls Pick Up Nomination Materials So Far
BY BILL KOENEKER
The upcoming Malibu City Council election set for April 10, 2012 got off to an official start last week and was interrupted by a Christmas holiday.
City Hall was closed by Friday afternoon and also on Monday.
No candidates pulled nominating papers this Tuesday, according to the City Clerk's office, as the Malibu Surfside News went to press.
By the end of last week, Joan House, Andy Lyon, Hamish Patterson, John Sibert and Jefferson Wagner had gone to the city clerk's office to obtain the documents.
Hamish Patterson is a skateboard park activist who is a newcomer to local politics. He is also known as Malibu Hamish Illusion, whose series of videos are posted on YouTube.
Patterson says he grew up in Malibu and, like many of his local friends, didn't really pay much attention to Malibu politics.
The 42-year-old council hopeful said it was not until he got involved in the skate park issue several months ago did he notice how the policies and complexity of not just the skate park issue but other municipal issues shapes how something happens and how it gets done.
"That is not getting out to the public. There is a disconnect between the city council and the rest of us," he said.
Patterson said he also noticed there are a lot of different agendas held by many different people as the issues unfold.
He said on the skate park issue he hoped to raise it to a new level and also to inform the city it is not just youngsters who skateboard or who have a need for a good skate park.
"I never used Papa Jack's. It really was not adequate. All right, let's do a real skate park," he said. "I'm talking about also for those of us over 40."
With his eyes wide open, he said, he started getting involved in other local issues such as the planned restoration of the Malibu Lagoon.
"Why dig it up? It is not a big lagoon. It is basically just an outflow of a creek. It seems like there is this back door dealing or some kind of inside deals going on," he said. "It is the same thing with Legacy Park. All of that expense, just for water storage?"
He said the Malibu of his youth is changing and right before his eyes. "We've got Pepperdine coming on with their giant arena and more beds for the dorms. All of these things are going on. For me it has become more about how and what is going on behind the scenes," he said.
"Everything needs to be public. I don't see anybody on the council holding to that," he insisted. "Things should not be behind closed doors. There are five members telling people too ignorant or disenfranchised to do anything. Or they let you know after-the-fact."
Patterson said he works in the construction trades as a carpenter and has done work in the "sober living community" in Malibu.
"There is a disconnect with the city council and the drug rehabilitation facilities [workers and clients]"
The potential candidate ticked off a list of agenda items he would like to see accomplished. "I cannot fathom why the city council has not gotten together with Caltrans to alter the timing of the traffic light at Cross Creek and PCH. The traffic patterns have changed and the city council should be addressing that," he added.
He noted these are "quality of life" issues especially everyone's favorite—traffic and more traffic. "Some of the other lights on PCH, the timing is not adequate. There is a traffic issue at Heathercliff and PCH that needs to be addressed. That is one of the many basics. Traffic issues lend themselves to a lot of problems. The city seems to be willing to spend a lot of money for bikes passing through Malibu, but not paying attention to the locals, the rest of us."
Councilmember John Sibert had already filled out a notice of intent to collect campaign contributions, according to the City Clerk's office, but kept telling the local media last week he was not sure if he was running for reelection, but he did pull papers by the end of the week.
The nominating procedure is a formal process whereupon candidates must obtain the signatures of not less than 20 Malibu registered voters "nominating" the candidate for a position on the ballot. No more than 30 signatures may be obtained.
Next April, there will be three seats open. Councilmember John Sibert is running to keep his seat, as is Councilmember Jefferson Wagner. Councilmember Pamela Conley Ulich is termed out of office. Her seat will be up for grabs.
The last date to file nomination papers for incumbents is Jan. 13, the last date for all others is Jan. 18. The filing period for write-in candidates is Feb. 13 through March 27.
Voters may request vote-by -mail ballots from March 12 to April 3. The last day to register to vote is March 26.