Happy Easter / Happy Passover

Nameplate:  Mountain Views News

Inside this Week:

SM Calendar of Events

Sierra Madre:

Pasadena – Altadena:
JPL Events Calendar
Pet of the Week

Around The San Gabriel Valley:
Christopher Nyerges
What's Going On
Pet of the Week

Arcadia Police Blotter

Monrovia – Duarte:
Monrovia Police Blotter

Education & Youth:
Hall Pass

Good Food & Drink:
Chef Peter Dills
Table for Two
In the Kitchen

The World Around Us:
On Line
Looking Up
Happy Tails
… This and That
The Funnies

The Good Life:
Yoga is Just Stretching
Senior Happenings

Homes & Property:
One of a Kind

Sports & Arts:
Jeff's Pics
On the Course
Huddle Up!
Sean's Shameless Reviews

F. Y. I. :

V O T E ! :
Bill Coburn

Election Notices:

Election 2012:
John Harabedian

Opinion … Left/Right:
My Turn
Michael Reagan
Stuart Tolchin On …
As I See It

Election 2012:
YES on 12-1 & 12-2

Legal Notices (1):

Legal Notices (2):

Legal Notices (3):
Business Today

Letters & More:
Rich Johnson
Out to Pastor
Letters to the Editor
The Funnies

Election 2012:
Colin Braudrick
John Capoccia

Election 2012:
NO on 12-1 & 12-2

Election 2012:
Gene Goss

Meaghan Allen
Chris Bertrand
Jeff Brown
P. J. Carpenter
Bill Coburn
Peter Dills
Bob Eklund
Bobby Eldridge
Hail Hamilton
Howard W. Hays
Susan Henderson
Harvey Hyde
Rich Johnson
Sean Kayden
Chris LeClerc
Christopher Nyerges
René Quenell
Joan Schmidt
La Quetta M. Shamblee
Rev. James L. Snyder
Stuart Tolchin
Katie Tse

Recent Issues:
Issue 13
Issue 12
Issue 11
Issue 10
Issue 9
Issue 8
Issue 7
Issue 6
Issue 5
Issue 4
Issue 3

MVNews Archive:  Page 1

MVNews this week:  Page 1




After weeks of reviewing the city’s current financial situation in 
the aftermath of the Windstorm of 2011 and the dissolution of the 
Community Redevelopment Agency, the Sierra Madre City Council 
authorized the restructuring of several departments in an attempt to 
cut costs.

This week, layoff notices were sent to almost 10% of the city’s employees, 
eliminating the positions of:

Accounting Clerk

Community and Personnel Services Director

Community and Personnel Services Deputy Director

Administrative Assistant

Administrative Services Deputy Director and

SMPD Code Enforcement Officer.

As a result, according to City Manager Elaine Aguilar, Code Enforcement, 
Personnel Management and Recreation Management will be moved to 
other departments.

 With a reduction of income from the CRA of $800,000, and a downward 
trend in projected General Fund revenue, no other alternative was 

 Sierra Madre’s financial situation was also challenged by last year’s 
Windstorm, for which there was no Federal or State aid. Sierra Madre 
had to dip into its’ reserves to cover the $600,000 in expenses.

 The reorganization, which has not been completed is expected to save 
the city $274,000.

Non-personnel related cuts:

 While the council decided not to increase city fees, it was decided 
to reduce outside contracting services for contingencies by the Police 
Department. Those budgeted funds are for extraordinary circumstances 
where we have to rely on outside departments for forensics or during 
an emergency. The city has not used such contractors in several years.

 Ornamental lighting in the downtown area will also be curtailed. The 
decorative lighting shutdown will not pose a safety risk, but it will save 
the city $12,000 in electricity charges. Community Redevelopment 
Agency funds were previously used to support the decorative lighting 

 Another $15,000 a year will be saved by using volunteers to provide 
in-house training for Fire Fighters.

 Two additional programs will shift funding from the General Fund 
to donated monies. They are the YMCA contract to run the Youth 
Activity Center and a $2,000 annual contribution from the General 
Fund to senior activities. Funding will now come from the Oktoberfest 
Fundraiser for the YMCA contract and the Recycling Program income 
for the senior activities.

 Sierra Madre has not undergone a major reorganization in 
approximately seven years. However, with declining revenues from the 
CRA, property taxes and other sources, the layoffs and program cuts 
were inevitable.


The City of Sierra Madre Huck 
Finn Fishing Derby was held this 
past Saturday, March 31, 2012. 
Over 180 youth participated in 
the Huck Finn Fishing Derby with 
many parents, family and friends in 
attendance as well. The fishing was 
fantastic this year as most young 
anglers caught at least one trout and 
many caught their limit of three! 
Awards were given in the following 
four age categories, as well as the 
Largest Overall fish and Smallest 
Overall fish. 


Age Category 3-6 years:

• 1st – Loren Lomboy
• 2nd – Andrea Peeler
• 3rd – Christian Harkness

Age Category 7-9 years:

• 1st – Isabella Ramirez
• 2nd – Lily Cimino
• 3rd – Allison Kreuger

Age Category 10-12 years:

• 1st – Isabel Ball
• 2nd – Nathan Haag
• 3rd – Jake Rose

Age Category 13-15 years:

• 1st – Kristin Shigenaga
• 2nd – Trevor Abe
• 3rd – Sampson Sly

Largest Overall Fish – 

Loren Lomboy (3.92 lbs.)

Smallest Overall Fish – Michael 
Sheehan (0.14 lbs.)

The City of Sierra Madre would like 
to thank the following sponsors 
for making the Huck Finn Fishing 
Derby and Campout such a success: 
Sierra Madre Volunteer Firefighter’s 
Association, Sierra Madre Kiwanis 
Club, Sierra Madre Woman’s 
Club, Sierra Madre Civic Club, 
The Buccaneer Lounge, Okuma 
Fishing, Berkley – Pure Fishing, 
Tim Osti, Pasadena Casting Club, 
Sierra Madre Public Works, Chris 
Campbell and the Huck Finn 
Fishing Guides. 


By Susan Henderson

No matter what side of the political debate residents of 
Sierra Madre are on, we all have one thing in common. We 
want to preserve the Village character. We want to maintain 
the small town ambience that we have. We don’t want things 
to change. That however may be just a wish list given the 
reality of the economic situation in the city, the county, the 
state and the nation. The question has to be asked, “How 
will we keep the city like it is today”.

Diminishing Revenues From All Sources

With the nationwide downturn of the economy in 
2008, Sierra Madre, like the rest of the nation suffered 
tremendously. Property values plummeted and revenue 
from property taxes declined as well. The county offered 
some relief to homeowners by reassessing residential values, 
but by so doing, the amount of property tax that the city 
received declined. Home sales were almost non existent 
for a while and are just now beginning to revive. According 
to local realtor Judy Webb-Martin, “The market started going 
down in 2008 and continued for the next 3 and one half years 
till fall of 2011. We are rebounding now and heading in the 
right direction UP .” And while that is good news, it still 
will have a limited impact on the amount of property tax 
revenue the city receives. Property Tax revenue alone is 40% 
of the city’s general fund revenue. (See chart)

Retail businesses in town struggled to stay alive yet too many 
familiar places have closed their doors. Lozano’s Restaurant, 
Highlander Liquors, 300 West and several others just could 
not survive in this economy. Their absence put another dent 
in the city’s sales tax revenue and although in some instances 
new businesses have taken their place, revenue continues to 
decline. However, even if 100% of th existing retail space was 
occupied and prospering, sales tax only represents 2% of the 
city’s revenue. Amd the city’s Utility User’s Tax is 
expected to have a decrease in revenues of $160,000 
by the end of this fiscal year according to City 
Manager Elaine Aguilar.

And Then There Is The Governor’s Axe 

While Sierra Madre is not alone in feeling the 
pain, a loss of $800,000 from the redevelopment 
agency just about put a halt to many of the capital 
improvements that were in the works. Add to 
that the changes in the allocation to cities of the 
Vehicle License Fees and the way they are now 
distributed, you will find another large chunk of 
anticipated revenue has disappeared. The VLF 
Backfill will be $39,000 less by the end of the 
2011-2012 fiscal year.

The fate of the city’s Utility Users Tax will rest 
in the hands of voters on Tuesday. The tax 
accounts for 34% of the city’s revenue. It is 
currently allowed to increase to 12% (although 
the council has held it at 10%) but depending 
on the outcome of the election it will either 
sunset back to 6% in three years or be extended 
for another five years. 

There are no other sources of revenue for Sierra 
Madre. Retail growth is limited. Turnover 
in housing is infrequent and new housing 
opportunities are few. Sierra Madre, a town 
of a little more than 11,000 residents with full 
services, police, fire, paramedics, water, public 
works and a library has been able to sustain 
itself for more than 100 years. And yet, going forward, with 
limited resources, surviving will be the ultimate challenge.

This Week’s Highlights:

Sierra Madre Election Supplement


CLIMB: Serving the Multi-
handicapped Blind from 
Sierra Madre for 35 Years






Mountain Views News Endorsements

Opinions - Letters To The Editor

Legal Notices

Edison Releases 

Windstorm Report

The Sky’s The Limit SMRFA 
Prepares for 2013

Read The Paper Online At: www.mtnviewsnews.com

Mountain Views News 80 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. #327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.604.4548   www.mtnviewsnews.com