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Tag Archives | City Buzz

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City Buzz

Watch out for counterfeit currency Yesterday, City Hall sent out a crime alert e-mail warning about fake $100 bills being passed in Burbank. Los Angeles County businesses have seen a rise in phony $100 bills, according to the crime alert, which is posted on the city website as well. The U.S. $100 note is a favorite target of scam artists and counterfeiters around the world. The U.S. Treasury Department tries to stay a step ahead of the crooks with new security measures.  A new C-note with some high-tech features and safeguards,... Read More →

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Photo" FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank Mayor Anja Reinke at a city council meeting last May.

City Buzz

Burbank Mayor Anja Reinke’s daughter drama The Burbank City Council is dark tomorrow. That should give Council Member/Mayor, Anja Reinke, some extra time to deal with a personal matter that has serious public ramifications. Last Thursday, the popular Semichorus blog was the first to nail down some details on the DUI arrest of Mayor Reinke’s daughter, Ericka Reinke, who happens to be a Burbank City employee. Here’s what two sources reportedly confirmed for Semichorus. 2:15AM on Sept 1, 2010 Ericka Augusta Reinke arrested for DUI by the LAPD NorthEast Division. Placed in... Read More →

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City Buzz

A full house at the public forum After all the hoopla, debates, agenda re-writes, and months of delays, the first public forum held by the Burbank Police Commission in recent memory went off with only a few minor glitches. First, additional chairs had to be brought out to accommodate the crowd that showed up last Wednesday night, August 18, in the Community Room of the Community Services Building on Third Street, across from the Burbank Police and Fire Headquarters. More than 100 people were packed into the Community Room. A large number... Read More →

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Photo: FLLewis/Media City G-- David Starr Jordan Middle School, 420 South Mariposa Street in Burbank

City Buzz

City budget cuts terminate after school program Monday, August 16, is back to school day for the Burbank Unified School District. For some David Starr Jordan Middle School students and their parents, there might be more than the usual degree of anxiety that goes along with the first week of school. Recently, I got an e-mail from a very upset parent who felt blindsided, earlier this month, when notified about the dumping of an after school program at Jordan: “I only found out when we picked up the back to school packet.... Read More →

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City Buzz

Burbank & the Bell salary flap Here ‘s a sad, but true tale of two Southland cities where the pay of  selected officials/employees has been jacked up to ridiculous levels.  The Los Angeles Times outed the  small community of Bell recently for paying exorbitant salaries to a handful of its city officials. Nearly $800,000 to the Bell City Manager, $457,000 to the Police Chief, and $376, 288 to the Assistant City Manager. Oh, and most of the Bell City Council members were banking a $100,000 a year. The Times’ investigation produced a series of stories and columns, sparking outrage among Bell citizens.  That outrage... Read More →

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City Buzz

Two Burbank city council members speak out on two very different issues Burbank City Councilman Dr. David Gordon photo from Burbank website In the past few days, two members of the Burbank City Council have sent letters to two different newspapers about two very different concerns —  producing quite a contrast. In last Saturday’s Burbank Leader, Dr. David Gordon responded with a rebuttal to the newspaper’s article of July 14 about the controversy surrounding the accounting of millions of dollars by the  Burbank Unifed  School District. As... Read More →

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City Buzz

A quake rattles Burbank and other parts of SoCal Some rocking, rolling, and shaking in the Southland late today. I was sitting in my car waiting for the red light to change at Glenoaks Boulevard and Olive Avenue, in front of the Burbank Central Library, when a 5.4 quake hit at 4:53 p.m. My cruiser rocked so much, I thought for a moment one of those cell phone/texting distracted drivers had bumped into the ride.  Not this time. It was a natural occurrence, a reminder, that we live in earthquake country. The quake was centered... Read More →

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City Buzz

  Business is booming at one little shop in Burbank Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Customers waiting in line at Yogurtland in Downtown Burbank While many local businesses are struggling in this tough economy, Yogurtland is packing in the customers and making serious money!  “Business is very good.” Jamileth Mendoza, a shift leader, told me with a broad smile as she worked behind the counter last Saturday, June 26. I was out in Downtown Burbank when I noticed this crowded little pink shop near North San Fernando Boulevard and East Palm Avenue. Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove —... Read More →

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City Buzz

Burbank City Council approves new budget and utility fee hikes Last night the Burbank City Council green-lighted a $785 million budget for fiscal year 2010-2011. The tally  4-to-1, with only Councilman David Gordon voting against the budget. As with past budget debates, Dr. Gordon was the lone member of the council fighting to try to “keep utility rates down.” I have watched this recent debate, week after week, and I do think the four other council members believe they are doing what is in the public interest. I disagree with them, and support Dr. Gordon’s position that... Read More →

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City Buzz

The Burbank Leader goes after a blogger UPDATE: June 20, 2010 — A new version of that controversial post is up on Semichorus blog and, you know, it’s more hard hitting than the first. Also, some pretty interesting comments on that post as well.  Check it out here.   Competition in the news biz is fierce, no doubt about it. Nevertheless, I was surprised to see the “Takedown Notice” posted over on the Semichorus blog last night. That notice is from The Burbank Leader and its parent company, The Los... Read More →

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City Buzz

Fallout from the 43rd State Assembly Race Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — The Burbank Democratic Club hosted its 5th annual spring picnic on Saturday, May 22, 2010 It may seem like smooth sailing for Democrat Mike Gatto, now that he has been sworn-in as the new Assemblyman for the 43rd District, but some serious drama is still swirling around  him and that race. As of yesterday, for the special election to finish out the term of Ex-Assemblyman Paul Krekorian, The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk website showed Gatto with 21,396 votes... Read More →

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City Buzz

Voters head to the polls on Election Tuesday Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — A Burbank pollworker prepares to insert a voter’s ballot into the Inkavote machine to check for errors on Election Day,  November 4,  2008. Jobs are hard to come by these days, but Los Angeles County officials are still finding it difficult to attract enough pollworkers for the Primary Election, this Tuesday, June 8.  As of last Tuesday, June first, The L.A. County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office was scrambling to fill about 200 pollworker positions at various locations. Pollworkers... Read More →

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City Buzz

A final exit for actors Dennis Hopper & Gary Coleman Photo:  Mark Boster/ Los Angeles Times — A frail Dennis Hopper gets a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, March 26, 2010 A legendary Hollywood  “Bad Boy” Veteran actor and co-star of the cult classic motorcycle/road film, “Easy Rider” (1969), Dennis Hopper, died last Saturday, May 29, at the age of 74, after a battle with prostate cancer. Hopper reportedly passed away at his home in Venice, California surrounded by family and friends. Hopper appeared in over 100 films. He lived... Read More →

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City Buzz

Debate heats up in the 43rd State Assembly race Glendale Businessman, Chahe Keuroghelian, remains a controversial force in the 43rd State Assembly race, even though, he shutdown his campaign almost a week ago. The Burbank Democratic Club (I ‘m a member) threw its 5th annual  picnic at McCambridge Park in Burbank today. When I got there around 1 p.m., the event was in full swing with food, people, speeches, and candidates working the crowd. Elected officials included State Senator Carol Liu, Burbank Mayor Anja Reinke, Burbank Councilman Dr. David Gordon, and... Read More →

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City Buzz

New comedy club opening in Burbank The Burbank City Council has cleared the way for the city’s first comedy club. You would think it was a no-brainer with entertainment being the number one industry in B-town, but it wasn’t. Last night, the city council approved a business assistance loan of $190,000 for The Flappers Comedy Club and Restaurant by a 4-to-1 vote. Dr. David Gordon was the lone dissenter. The loan will be used to remodel the old Macaroni Grill site at the corner of East Magnolia Boulevard and North 1st Street, in the... Read More →

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City Buzz

Burbank City Councilman David Gordon responds to his critics Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — At the November 3, 2009 city council meeting, Councilman David Gordon called for a major step in dealing with the growing Burbank police scandal Burbank is still buzzing about the snub of two-term Councilman David Gordon by his colleagues on the council. On Monday, Dr. Gordon was passed over again for mayor and vice-mayor. The positions are rotated every year among the council members, but apparently a decision has been made to leave one member... Read More →

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City Buzz

A new Burbank mayor, but will it mean real change? Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — (L-R) Vice-Mayor Jess Talamantes, Councilmen David Gordon, Gary Bric, Dave Golonski, and in the center, Burbank Mayor Anja Reinke                Burbank has a new mayor and a new vice-mayor. Yesterday, the Burbank City Council selected Anja Reinke as mayor and Jess Talamantes as vice-mayor. I must say, Reinke smiled and bubbled at this city council meeting more than at any other I’ve seen her attend in the past year. However, the big story is... Read More →

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Burbank City Buzz

It’s a wrap for Burbank Mayor Gary Bric Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank Mayor Gary Bric read a statement about the lawsuits and investigations swirling around the Burbank Police Department at the September 29, 2009 city council meeting.  Mayor Gary Bric is off the hook… somewhat. Last night, Bric presided over his last Burbank City Council meeting. Over the past months, Bric has improved in his job. The soon-to-be-ex-mayor still needs work in some areas, like when it comes to handling the public comment sections of the meeting. The... Read More →

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Burbank City Buzz

    A candidate in the 43rd State Assembly race bows out Days after a poor showing in that special election for the chance to finish the 43rd State Assembly term of Paul Krekorian, Nayiri Nahabedian has officially dropped out of the race for that seat. Nahabedian’s political consultant Paul Mitchell announced the end of her campaign in an article on The Burbank Leader website. However, when I got an e-mail from Nahabedian last Saturday, April 17, I had the feeling something was up. There’s a certain finality in this message... Read More →

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Burbank City Buzz

A run-off in the 43rd Assembly District race It’s Democrat Mike Gatto against the only Republican on the ballot, Sunder Ramani. I dropped by a couple of polling places in Burbank on Tuesday evening and was told by the poll workers that the turnout was way better than expected.  A small sampling, but it turned out to be right on the mark. The Los Angeles County Registrar Recorder County Clerk’s office posted the following election results on its website. April 13, 2010   43rd Assembly Special Election Mike Gatto ... Read More →

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Burbank City Buzz

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank Police and Fire Headquarters A death in the Burbank city jail More strange events in Burbank. First, over the weekend, an inmate reportedly was found hanging in his jail cell. It was reported on Jim Carlile’s blog and then on The Burbank Leader website that 60-year-old John Alfred Flores’ body was discovered on Easter. Flores, a domestic violence suspect, was jailed after an incident Sunday morning. Early reports are calling it a suicide. The Los Angeles Coroner will release the official cause of death after... Read More →

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Burbank City Buzz

Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank Controversial court ruling involving one of the lawsuits swirling around the Burbank PD A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge dismissed Burbank Police Officer Jamal Childs as a plaintiff from that explosive discrimination lawsuit filed against the Burbank PD last May by five of its minority officers. On Thursday, March 18, Judge Joanne O’Donnell ruled the statute of limitations had expired on Childs’ claim. Hmm, Childs has been a Burbank Police officer for five years. It’s not like his complaints date back 20 years or so. Well no... Read More →

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