Mountain Views News, Combined edition

Combined Edition

Inside this Week:

Sierra Madre:
Class of 2020

Sierra Madre:
Walking SM … The Social Side

SM Community Calendar:
SM Calendar of Events

Pasadena – Altadena:

Local City News:
What's Open: Arcadia

Around The San Gabriel Valley:
Chef Peter Dills
Table for Two
Rep. Adam Schiff
L.A. Covid-19 Update

Support Your Local Businesses:

Education & Youth:

Best Friends:
All Things
Pet of the Week
The Funnies

The Good Life:
Family Matters
Out to Pastor
Senior Happenings

Lilly Kofler
Dick Polman
Stuart Tolchin On …
The Funnies

Legals / Thanks:
We Thank You!
Newspaper Fun!

F. Y. I. :

Jeff Brown
Deanne Davis
Peter Dills
Marc Garlett
Susan Henderson
Rev. James Snyder
Stuart Tolchin

Recent Issues:
Issue 23
Issue 22
Issue 21
Issue 20
Issue 19
Issue 18
Issue 17
Issue 16
Issue 15
Issue 14
Issue 13

MVNews Archive:  Page 1

MVNews this week:  Page 1

VOLUME 14 NO. 24

 SATURDAY, JUNE 13, 2020 



broker lic. #01514230 | source: CoreLogic, Freddie Mac, BankrateTHEWEBB-MARTIN GROUPJan Greteman #01943630Judy Webb-Martin #00541631 
Katie Orth #00942500We are active and doing business 
safely and successfully. Call us today 
if you are looking to buy or sell!
Your Story. Your Home. Your Team.
Together Stronger.
690 Oak Crest Dr.
Sierra Madre 91024Represented the BuyerClass of 2020! 
Congratulations on your graduation! 
We know you’re going to do big things in life.
SOLD451 Camillo Rd.
Sierra Madre 91024Represented the Seller
SOLD180 S. Michillinda Ave. | Sierra Madre 91024www.180michillinda.com381 Mariposa Ave. #BSierra Madre 91024Represented the Seller
IN ESCROWOver Asking 
with Multiple Offers!
Starting bid of $599,000AUCTION JUNE 13TH
SOLD118 E Laurel Ave. #CSierra Madre 91024Represented the SellerMultiple Offers!
We ARE BusyBuilt in 1885 as a carriage house, this charming two-story home was 
converted to a single-family residence and moved to its present 
location in 1936. While sorely in need of a complete restoration, the 
charm and character of this lovely home remains intact.
AGE 70

In the face of the fiscal impact 
COVID-19 has had on cities across 
the country, Sierra Madre managed to 
approve a 2020-2021 balanced budget 
while sporting a $1.2 million General 
Fund surplus. 

Staff used a zero-based process to 
establish that each line item in the 
budget was necessary. Department 
heads were asked to review their 
budgets for reductions, requiring a 
line-by-line review and approval of 
all expenditures by the City Manager, 
according to the staff report. 

The budget proposal establishes a 
$200,000 General Fund contingency. 
That’s an increase of 50% put aside 
for unforeseen circumstances and 
unbudgeted items, as those felt over 
the last three months of stay-at-home 

The Budget Public Hearing took place 
on Tuesday June 9, but produced no 
public comments for or against the 
contents of the proposal, most likely 
due to the impact of the pandemic. 
Because of COVID-19, the city 
repurposed approximately $400,000 
of General Fund monies to pandemic 
relief. Additional steps were taken to 
save funds through reduction of hours 
and services that the city felt were 
no longer needed. Actions included 
hiring freezes, elimination of non-
essential overtime expenses and the 
postponement of all non-essential 
capital projects. 

Moving forward to the next fiscal year, 
the city proposes a suspension of the 
compensation program, which means 
no step or cost-of-living increases for 
City employees. They may also offer 
early retirement packages. This is not 
set in stone and may change as we 
recover and open up more services. 

Sales revenues in the city are still 
expected to continue to slide below 
expectations in 2021, due to the 
coronavirus. Projections show Sierra 
Madre having a loss of close to 40% in 
sales tax, this reduction will be offset by 
the 0.75% sales tax increase (Measure 
S)which was approved by voters in
2019. In addition, the city budgeted for 
a delinquency in property tax, losses 
in rent, business licenses, overnight 
parking, and events revenue. 

In some good news, the 2020-21 
budget includes funding for training 
and equipment for public safety, such 
as $200,000 for a new ambulance. 

An option has been left open to 
make increases or decreases to 
expenditures as needed. For example, 
if the projections change for the better, 
prepayments from the General Fund 
to CalPERS could take place and pay 
freeze for city employees may be lifted. 

Some of the reductions that have 
been made because of COVID-19 
will become permanent, in order to 
repurpose funds to assist during the 
pandemic, according to the 3-Year 
Pandemic Response Plan presented by 
City Manager Gabriel Engeland. These 
reductions include: cutbacks of LAPD 
patrol, elimination of community 
service grants, and program assistance 
to the YMCA. The city will save 
approximately $85,000, due to these 
cuts. Some repurposing considered 
one-time only includes utilizing 
$200,000 from the COPS fund balance 
and $190,000 from IT Capital Projects.

Overall, compared to some neighboring 
cities, Sierra Madre looks strong as it 
enters into its third consecutive year of 
an all-funds surplus. The breakdown 
of the 20/21 Budget shows a General 
Fund revenue of $12,010,400 and 
expenditures at $10,336,720, leaving 
an 8% surplus of expenditures. The 
total all-funds budget is $23.2 million 
with $2.9 million in total surplus. 

In the Police Department, the city 
added one full-time position, while 
decreasing part-time hours. The Fire 
Department increased salaries and 
added funds for a chief position and 
also added a part-time training captain 
position. Public works budgeted 
$10,000 for Lizzie’s Trail House Inn 
and will continue aggressive street 
repairs throughout the city. The 
sewer system is budgeted for repairs 
and a new truck, and the Water fund 
anticipates investing $2.5 million in 
infrastructure, including a $1 million 
interest free loan from the San Gabriel 
Valley Municipal Water District. The 
library also eliminated one full-time 
position, as services were not needed 
due to COVID-19.

Mayor Pro Tem Rachelle Arizmendi 
stated that she has not heard favorable 
budget news from City Council 
colleagues from neighboring towns and 
commends City Staff. “Considering 
some of the investments we’ve had to 
make for COVID, and changes we’ve 
had to make with our planning, it’s 
remarkable what we’ve been able to 
do,” she said. 

“There is a lot of good news here given 
the true challenges the pandemic has 
laid out,” said Councilmember Gene 
Goss. “This is an awfully good-looking 
budget considering.” 

Mayor John Capoccia praised the City 
Manager and staff for reacting quickly 
to the pandemic and exploring where 
the city could save money and cut 
costs. “The exciting thing about the 
budget is the surplus we have, which 
is considerably over our target of 
25% of General Fund fund balance. 
This is good news for Sierra Madre,” 
the Mayor said, referring to the fund 
balance in the General Fund which is 
projected to reach 72% at fiscal year 

Council unanimously adopted 
four resolutions in relation to the 
budget. The 84-page Staff Report 
on the budget, including a complete 
breakdown of spending, is available to 
the public on the Sierra Madre website 

Without question, 
Barry Schwam was 
one of the most colorful 
characters in Sierra 
Madre. He was our 
Grinch, he was our 
Ichobad Crane, he was 
our official 'theremin' 
player and so much 
more. He was an important 
part of the Sierra 
Madre Playhouse, 
The Sierra Madre Wistaria 
Festival, and 

Sierra Madre's very 
own Grinch. And, he 
was an important part 
of JJs Jukebox which 
performed in his honor 
on Sunday.

There really aren't 
enough words to describe this multi talented, actor, musician, artist 
and all around great guy and he will be sorely missed.

Barry fought a valiant fight against cancer and died on June 7th 
peacefully in his Sierra Madre home, according his wife Lydia. 
There will be a public memorial sometime in the future for this 
amazingly talented man. Lydia completed her post with words 
that he and his friends could truly understand, "The Mother Ship 
has finally beamed you up"


On Tuesday, the Sierra Madre Community held a solemn 
vigil in an effort to remember the untimely murder of 
George Floyd and the incidents that led to his death and 
the efforts to change those circumstances by thousands of 
protestors across the nation. This event was organized on 
the day of Floyd's burial by Sierra Madre resident Christy 
Teichman (top right) who "Wanted to bring our community 
together and start creating that change." The event began 
iwith a rendition of, "It Is Well" spiritual by Heidi Salazar. 
Speakers included Rev. Briant Cuffy, Pastor of Bethany 
Christian Church Sierra Madre (pictured lower right), 
Kellen Law (top right), Justin Sapp, Florence Annang, and 
Mountain Views News editor, Susan Henderson (lower 
left). To see a video of the complete event, go to: www.


As of Friday, Sierra Madre experienced an increase in the 
number of COVID-19 cases to 15 and the total number of 
deaths to 2. Prior to this week, the city had no COVID-19 
casualties reported.

 The two cases were both at the Kensington Senior Living 
Center and both suffered from illnesses. Both were in the 
hospital at the time of death.

The Kensington's residence have been under quarantine for 
some time and had implemented precautions to protect residents 
in early March. Sources indicate that at one time there 
were six employees that tested postive for the virus.

Currently there are no other reported cases among staff or 


LA County and State run testing sites are all open. Residents can 
make an appointment by visiting the County COVID-19 testing 
website. Same day appointments are available at State operated Optum-
Serve sites.

“We are committed to ensuring that testing is widely available to 
people who need them,” said Dr. Christina Ghaly, Director of the 
Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. “Through our 
col-laborative work with community clinics and other healthcare 
providers we are working to meet the needs of the community and 
provide seamless care for patients.”

For the latest information on COVID-19 testing sites or to make an 
appointment, please vis-it 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website:

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