“Lisa has both friends and detractors, but she is by far the most knowledgeable person in Studio City regarding land use issues.”
Your assertions regarding Ms. Sarkin’s knowledge of land use issues is debatable, as is the question of who benefits most from her knowledge and efforts.
Exhibit one: The Studio City Residential Overlay (Anti-Mansionization Ordinance) which is widely touted as one of her significant achievements.
And yet, the tide of overbuilt single family residential projects is one of the most common and enduring discussions on this board. Why? Because the ordinance penned under Ms. Sarkin’s guidance is so overly complex that a thorough review for compliance would overburden City plan check staff who operate on hourly review limits.
An experienced legislator knows enforcement is the challenge to implementation of any regulation and an ordinance like Ms. Sarkin’s is toothless without the collection of a special fee for Studio City plan reviews to subsidize an additional time allocation.
The present ordinance without such meaningful enforcement has been a boon to real estate developers and speculators, as they are able to interpret the complexity as it suits them with little actual oversight. As is often the case, we are left with a law that offers only the illusion of protection. Who does such illusory protection serve?
Ms. Sarkin could of course rattle the bars at our Councilman’s office, and perhaps she has. I rather tend to doubt it though, as she seems to be more concerned with pushing through projects supported by Mr. Krekorian – often despite the concerns of her constituency. This does seem something she *is* rather skilled at doing…
So this brings us to the entire election fiasco which shows the same heavy-handed signature of extreme complexity.
Why does Studio City have the most rigorous and demanding voter validation program of all the Neighborhood Councils in Los Angeles? Need we defend ourselves from a hostile take over by residents of Sherman Oaks?
I think not.
Simply put, voter identification programs effectively act to suppress voter participation. When voter participation is suppressed, established power structures and incumbent candidates retain power.