Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, August 2, 2014

MVNews this week:  Page B:1







–;Assemblymember Roger Hernández 
(D-West Covina) announced he will 
be honored with the Solidarity with 
Immigrant Workers Award by the 
California Labor Federation during the 
2014 Biennial Convention, which takes 
place on July 29-30 in San Diego. 
“I want to thank Executive Secretary-
Treasurer Art Pulaski and the California 
Labor Federation for this great honor 
being bestowed upon me. It gives me 
great pleasure to accept this honor on behalf of all 
the men and women of labor. To many, California 
is the American Dream,” stated Hernández. 

 Hernández is being honored for his work in 
protecting the rights of immigrants in the state 
who often face retaliation, fear and intimidation 
in the workplace. Last year, Hernández sponsored 
AB 263, which was signed by Governor Brown to 
protect immigrant workers against retaliation on 
the jobsite against unscrupulous employers who 
take advantage of their employee’s legal status. 
Also, Hernández introduced AB 1897 in 2014 
which provides protections to temporary workers 
when companies use staffing agencies and other 
labor contractors to supply workers.

 “Many employers follow the letter of the law, pay 
great wages, provide benefits and look 
after workers’ safety, but often times, 
some employers take advantage of their 
workforce. These employees work hard 
for their wages and to provide for their 
families. I will continue to fight for the 
rights of others and protect the erosion 
of the middle class against employers 
who take advantage of Californians,” 
said Hernández. 

 The California Labor Federation is made 
up of more than 1,200 AFL-CIO unions, 
representing 2.1 million union members in the 
manufacturing, retail, construction, hospitality, 
public sector, health care, entertainment and other 

The California Labor Federation’s 2014 Biennial 
Convention will take place at the Hilton San Diego 

 Hernández proudly serves the cities of Azusa, 
Baldwin Park, Bradbury, City of Industry, Covina, 
El Monte, Glendora, Irwindale, Monrovia, West 
Covina and the unincorporated communities 
of: Bassett, Charter Oak, East Arcadia, Ramona, 
Royal Oaks and Valinda. Hernández also serves 
as Chair of the Assembly Labor and Employment 
Committee and the Select Committee on Post-
Secondary Access and Matriculation.


Dear Friends, 

The California Department of Motor Vehicles 
(DMV) has recently released two new helpful 
tools for those planning to take the California 
driver’s license exam and those who wish to learn 
more about the rules of the road and navigating 
the DMV. These resources will help make 
California roads safer for all of us. 

 DMV Now is a mobile application that 
provides: sample tests for those planning to take 
the written driver’s license exam; helpful driving 
videos; important California DMV instant alerts; 
and a nearby DMV field office locator.

 DMV Now can be used on iPhone, iPod 
Touch, and Android devices. To learn more and 
download DMV Now, please visit:

 The DMV has also released The California 
DMV Digital iBook, a handbook that offers 
comprehensive information on a variety of 
subjects including acquiring and renewing a 
license, safe driving tips and rules of the road, and 
information regarding mass transit, pedestrians, 
and cyclists. The electronic handbook also 
includes quizzes and interactive videos to 
test your knowledge about safe driving. The 
California driver handbook is available in both 
English and Spanish and can be found using the 
following link:

 If you have any questions, please feel free to 
contact my office at: 818-409-0400.


Senator Carol Liu’s signature 


State Senator 

25th District

 The 7th annual Identity Festival organized by 
the Armenian Community Coalition of Pasadena 
was a smashing success on Sunday, July 20, 2015. 
Victory Park that day was transformed into a bee 
hive with more than 4,000 people, Armenians 
and non-Armenians alike, from all walks of life 
were in and out through out the day from 12:00 
noon to 7:00 p.m. in the evening. This event was 
cosponsored by Congresswoman Judy Chu, The 
City of Pasadena and the Pasadena Library. 

 The theme of the day was to celebrate the 125th 
anniversary of the first Armenian settlement in 
the city of Pasadena, which was incorporated into 
cityhood just three years earlier. I was pleasantly 
impressed that the Mistresses of the Ceremony 
were young and talented Armenian Ladies from 
our community, namely Nayri Krouzian and 
Serah Chahinian, who masterfully conducted the 
program in English and Armenian respectively. 
Another young artist, Sevag Chahinian, was the 
D.J. for the day.

 The festivities of the day began with an acapela 
rendition of the American and Armenian 
National Anthems by Maral Kurdian, a junior 
at the Armenian General Benevolent Union’s 
Vatche and Tamar Manougian High School in 
Pasadena. She mesmerized the audience by her 
beautiful voice.

Among the dignitaries attending the festival was 
Congresswoman Judy Chu, who reflected upon 
the contributions of some the famous Armenian 
scientists, inventors and entrepreneurs, who 
had helped advance the technology, which 
made America a better place to live and prosper. 
She then presented several Certificates of 
Congressional Recognition to some of the hard 
working members of the Armenian Community 
Coalition of Pasadena.

 Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard, addressing the 
audience said that “This festival demonstrates how 
deep the roots are for the Armenian community. 
We welcome and celebrate different cultures and 
learn from one another. That makes Pasadena a 
more enjoyable and a more stimulating city.”

Pasadena Police Chief Phillip Sanchez 
congratulated the Armenian Community 
Coalition on the occasion of the 7th annual 
Identity Festival and said that “We have a great 
city and a great police department and many of 
the lessons learned come from our Armenian 
brothers and sisters. The influence you have 
in Pasadena is extraordinary, in medicine, 
engineering, and entrepreneurship.” He then 
continued saying, “I’m proud to announce 
that in the great history of the Pasadena Police 
Department, about six months ago, we hired our 
first Armenian woman.”

 Assemblyman Chris Holden and Glendale 
City Councilwoman Lorry Friedman also 
addressed the audience, congratulating the 
Armenian Community Coalition and reiterating 
the important role of the Armenians in their 
respective district and city.

 Dr. Hovhannes Ahmaranian and Kevork 
Keushkerian spoke on behalf of the Armenian 
Community Coalition of Pasadena in Armenian 
and English, respectively. They both dwelled upon 
the fact that Armenians had settled in Pasadena 
125 years ago and that now the Armenian 
population in Pasadena had grown to have 4 
schools, 6 churches, 4 cultural organizations and 
2 weekly newspapers.

They also mentioned that the first settler, Mr. 
Movses Pashgian, had become the Grand 
Marshall in the Tournament of Roses Parade 
in 1915. Coincidentally, 100 years later, the first 
Armenian Rose Float will parade along the 5.5 
mile route on Colorado Blvd. on January 1, 2015. 
This will be a unique opportunity for Armenians 
to share their 7000 year old rich cultural heritage 
with the whole world, making them proud 
and resolute to pass the torch on to the next 

 Entertainment was provided throughout the 
day by a selected host of singers and dancers; such 
as Nshan Tchaghatsbanian, Kevork Chakmayan, 
Gantegh (Lantern) choir, Pateel (Snow Flake) and 
Nor Serount (New Generation) Dance Groups 
and Vartan & Seranoush Kevorkian Dance 
Ensemble. The audience was elated by their 
performances and gave them loud applauses and 
constantly shouted words of praise.

 Finally, it was time for cutting the 125th 
anniversary cake. Congresswoman Chu, Mayor 
Bogaard and Police Chief Sanchez, along with 
Chris Chahinian, Chairman of the Armenian 
Community Coalition of Pasadena participated 
in the cake cutting ceremony. The cake was 
donated by Sarkis Pastry of Pasadena. The cake 
was big enough to satisfy all the children and the 
adults of the community who happened to be 
there at around 4:30 p.m.

REMEMBRANCE: Norma Lee Pontello

January 21, 1940-July 16, 2014 

 On July 16, 2014, Norma Lee 
Pontello, known and loved by many 
people passed away, surrounded 
by her beloved family. Norma was 
a fantastic wife and mother and 
exceptional office manager for Bob 
Margett for many years.

 St. Rita’s Church, Sierra Madre 
celebrated her life Saturday July 26 
with a beautiful Mass and reception. 
Her best friend of 40 years, Linda 
did a Eulogy. She spoke of how 
their friendship began with their 
boys starting kindergarten. They 
had the same interests-politics, 
shopping, playing bridge, and a 
shared Southern heritage. Norma 
was a great hostess and fantastic 
cook. They also went on vacations 
together. Linda also spoke of Norma’s deep faith 
and attending Bible Study together.

 Norma worked for Bob Margett 
when he was both an Assemblyman 
and State Senator. Bob and his wife 
Beverly attended the services as did 
Corey Calaycay, Jim Starkey and 
Steve Johnson who also worked 
for Margett. Of course there were 
several ladies from the Arcadia 
Republican Women’s Club as well 
as former Mayor Gail Marshall and 
current City Councilman Sho Tay. 
At the reception, I sat with Joan 
Whitenack, Betty Mc Williams, and 
Raina Martinez from Foothill Unity 
Center, Lee Shimin and his lovely 
wife, and Holly Griffith of Pasadena.

 Norma was a dear lady who will 
be greatly missed by her family and 
many friends.




Hop aboard the Yellow 
Submarine and get to 
know the Fab Four with 
Beatles tribute band Hard 
Day’s Night this Sunday, 
July 27th at Concerts in 
the Park. These excellent 
musicians deliver an 
exciting and authentic 
recreation of a Beatles 
concert from the “Touring 
Years” (1964-66) and the 
Sgt. Pepper and Abbey 
Road era (1967-70). 
The concert is sponsored 
by the Sierra Madre 
Volunteer Firefighter's Association and will run from 6:00-8:00 
pm, but be sure to get there early to secure a spot! Please note 
that no alcohol is allowed in Memorial Park. FOOD VENDING: 
Farmers Belly food truck. 
AROUND SGV Pg. B1Inside this week: 
Pg. 9 
B 10 
Pg. 11“Awesome. I never dreamed I’d win a second Kentucky Derby, but here it is. This 
was a typical race for him (California Chrome). He ran like he always does. Art 
(Sherman) just said: ‘You know him, ride him.’ I had the trip I wanted”
I had the opportunity to sit down outside Starbucks a few days ago to chat with 
Victor Espinoza, a fairly new Sierra Madrean, AND a two-time Kentucky Derby-
Preakness winning jockey. In 2002, Victor rode War Emblem to victory in the 
Derby and the Preakness, just as he did this past 
May with California Chrome. The Triple Crown 
of racing – Derby-Preakness-Belmont Stakes – 
was last won by Affirmed in 1978, which tells 
you just how hard it is to win The Triple Crown! 
Victor’s career wins: More than 3,100 and many 
more to come! 
After the Triple Crown meets, Victor flew 
over to England to ride in the Windsor Castle 
Stakes at the Royal Ascot five-day meet, June 
17-21, winning on the colt, Hootenanny, then 
chatted with Queen Elizabeth II and her Racing 
Advisor John Warren in the Ascot Parade Ring. 
He threw out the ceremonial first pitch at 
Yankee Stadium on June 2nd and joked with 
David Letterman about who’s the boss when he 
and California Chrome get together. California 
Chrome likes to play around before the race but 
when they get in the gate, Victor is the boss and 
that’s that! Victor’s met Michael Strahan, thrown 
a ceremonial pitch for the Angels and loves what 
he does. But he didn’t tell me all that stuff, that’s 
all public record. 
Victor is a delightful guy who would really 
rather talk about his love for and commitment 
to the young cancer patients of City of Hope 
than any of his celebrity encounters. He was 
quite moved recalling his visit to City of Hope 
after the Kentucky Derby win where he brought 
California Chrome t-shirts and autographed 
pictures to share with the kids. Meeting the 
amazing young people at City of Hope showed 
Victor a different kind of athlete; kids who are 
running races that are very hard to win… 
“All these kids, they have cancer. … Since that 
time, I donated 10 percent of my earnings for all 
the kids that have cancer. … It changed my life 
to see those kids like seven, eight, 10 years old, 
20 years old. … I hope today with what earnings 
I have I can make a change for one of those kids.” 
Born on a farm in Mexico, Victor relocated to the United States in 1993. His 
mom and the rest of the family are still in Mexico. Older brother, Jose, is also 
a jockey but following a serious accident, from which he is still recuperating in 
New York, he may not be riding professionally in the future. Victor has had a 
number of accidents himself but, as he says, “every day is a concern, but it’s your 
job!” He’s on the move constantly following various race meets; Chicago coming 
up, Los Alamitos, Del Mar. Which are his favorite tracks? “It’s a fun place where 
I can win a race!” But favorites are Santa Anita and Del Mar. 
Needless to say, Victor is in splendid shape. He says he works out a lot. 
Obviously, to control a racehorse weighing in at 1,000 lbs. or so, you’ve gotta be 
at the top of your game! The maximum weight 
of a jockey, including full gear, saddle, and saddle 
cloth is 126 lbs. in a Triple Crown race. That’s a 
lot of horse for a pretty light rider! During cooler 
months Victor runs up the Mt. Wilson Trail to 
First Water. But now that summer, the heat and 
possible rattlesnakes are upon us, he’s spending 
more time at the gym, sometimes two sessions a 
day, lifting weights in the morning. Made me feel 
a twinge of guilt as my weight lifting guru, John, 
and I are only making it to the gym on an average 
of once a week. Well, we’re walking Sierra Madre 
the other days! 
Of course, we got into the ‘what do you 
eat’ conversation and Victor confessed that his 
weakness is dessert and bread. Which one of 
us isn’t in that same dietary boat! But he has 
learned what his body can and can’t tolerate and 
found out the hard way, just like all of us, that 
dieting doesn’t work. As he says, life is about 
learning and he’s learned his body. Restrictive 
diets just made things worse so now it’s sensible 
moderation, small meals, and a safe distance from 
those seductive sirens bread and dessert! On race 
days, he eats very lightly, possibly just one small 
meal. I asked him if the old practice of sweating 
off excess weight is something he does. No! It’s 
not! The ‘hot box’ is still happening but not with 
Victor. His health is too important to him to 
upset the electrolyte and energy balance! 
Victor is one busy guy, still riding 
occasionally for California Chrome owner, Art 
Sherman, but he’s ready and able to go just about 
anywhere to ride upcoming new mounts, one 
of which might just possibly be the next Triple 
Crown winner. We’re long overdue for another 
Citation, Secretariat or Affirmed to take home 
horseracing’s biggest challenge and Sierra Madre 
would love to see Victor Espinoza in the saddle! 
My book: “A Tablespoon of Love, A Tablespoon of Laughter” is available on; or at Sierra Madre…The Social Side: VICTOR ESPINOZASierra Madre Resident Is Best Known For Winning The Kentucky Derby and The Preakness This Year By Deanne DavisVictor poses with a young patient at City of HopeEFFORT TO REPEAL UTILITY USERS TAX UNDERWAYNotice of Intent To Circulate Petition Filed With City ClerkBy Susan Henderson 
On Wednesday, July 2nd, three Sierra 
Madre residents filed a notice with the city 
announcing their intention to circulate a 
petition to place on the ballot an initiative 
entitled “Stop The Utility Users Tax”. 
The measure, if passed by two thirds of 
the qualified voters casting ballots in the 
election where the measure appears, would 
totally eliminate the existing UUT. 
The petition states the intent 
of the measure as, “repealing 
existing ordinances permitting 
the taxation of utilities and 
prohibiting the enactment of 
future utility user taxes except 
upon submission to the voters 
and approval by two-thirds of 
the votes cast.” 
The residents who have 
proposed the measure, Earl 
Richey, Shirley Moore and 
David McMonigle are listed 
on the Pasadena Tea Party’s 
TEAPAC website as having 
“informally associated 
themselves as the Sierra Madre 
Tax Limitation Committee 
(SMTLC).” The site also 
takes ownership of the effort 
as part of the California Tax 
Limitation Committee’s 
“TAX REVOLT”. It also 
notes that the Sierra Madre action follows 
a similar action in Arcadia. 
Earl Richey, a vocal opponent of Sierra 
Madre’s city government, is listed as the 
contact person for the effort. At press 
time, he had not returned a phone call in 
order to get his comments. However, on 
the TEAPAC website, they quote longtime 
Sierra Madre resident Maurice Whittaker 
who did speak with the Mountain Views 
Whittaker stated that while he had 
informed TEAPAC’s President Michael 
Alexander that he would sign the petition, 
he was quite surprised to learn of the quote 
attributed to him on the TEAPAC website. 
The site quotes Whittaker as saying, “The 
City of Sierra Madre is out of control 
just like every city. It’s being run for the 
financial benefit of public employees and 
the unions rather than the citizens. In these 
tough times it’s only fair that government 
share some of the pain and learn how to live 
within its means.” 
Whittaker denied having ever made such 
a statement and said that while he did agree 
and will sign a petition, he is doubtful if 
the effort will be successful. When asked 
what proponents of the measure intend 
to replace the income derived from UUT 
taxes in Sierra Madre with should the tax be 
eliminated he replied, “I don’t know. That’s 
why I don’t think it will pass [the repeal].” 
There are several steps that need to be 
completed before the measure can be 
put before voters, including gathering 
enough signatures. At this point, the City 
Attorney has prepared, as required by law, 
the proposed language and content. What 
happens next remains to be seen.
Arcadia’s Effort 
Earlier this month, the Arcadia City 
Council rejected the petition of more than 
700 signatures submitted by the Arcadia 
Tax Limitation Committee by refusing 
to put the measure on the November or 
“any future ballot”. That committee was 
spearheaded by Arcadia 
residents Carolyn Papp, 
Larry Papp and Greg 
Arcadia, where the UUT 
represents less than 14% of 
its General Fund, is a city 
that has other resources 
including a major shopping 
center, race track and other 
commercial businesses that 
generate sales tax revenue. 
Sierra Madre, on the 
other hand, received 
31.4% of its General Fund 
revenue in the 2013-14 
fiscal year from the UUT 
and derives approximately 
2% of its revenue from 
sales taxes with no desire 
for expanded commercial 
Sierra Madre is currently facing a financial 
challenge trying to provide services with a 
reduction of no less than $1 million dollars 
as a result of voters narrowly rejecting an 
extension of the existing UUT at 10%. As 
a result, the UUT will be reduced to 8% in 
2015 and by 2016 it will drop to 6%. 
If a total repeal is passed the city will be 
faced with a reduction in revenues of more 
than 31% of the General Fund with no 
other source of income identified.
Repeal of the UUT would reduce the city’s revenue by 31.4%
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