Mailbag: Glendale drivers must be slowed

The only good thing about being struck by a vehicle while walking in Glendale is the instant before the impact. There are no lights, no sirens, no blood and no pain. It is the instant after that one must prepare for, because life as they knew it will never be the same.

By the grace of God, my mother's fate did not end like Joo Lee's when he was struck by a Glendale motorist ("Reward posted in fatal hit-run," Jan. 13). Like in his case, the officers and ambulance arrived, and she was rushed to the hospital. Unlike him, she survived, but for the rest of her life, she will never walk the same.

My mother joins the list of those nearly killed by brazen Glendale drivers who continuously repudiate the vehicle code.

Drivers who shun driving with their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road are begging for catastrophe. Pedestrian safety in this urban community is nationally considered inimical. In the past decade, 28 pedestrians have been killed in collisions, and another 1,075 have been injured in crashes in Glendale ("SPECIAL REPORT: An in-depth look at Glendale's pedestrian safety record," Jan. 16).

In April, the Glendale Police Department took drastic measures to ameliorate this drastic problem. They, like law enforcement agencies throughout the nation, used a decoy to target dangerous drivers. We all remember it. It was the bunny.

While effectively bringing awareness to the community, the tactic was besmirched and derailed by a contumacious City Council member. Sadly, he dubbed it an anomaly. His grandiloquence, in my opinion, was counterproductive and a step in the wrong direction. Had he played a proactive, vigilant and supportive role and marched alongside the officers, perhaps the driver who struck down my mother would have been stopped in the sting.

Statistically, time will ominously tell which Glendale residents will be struck dead in the street this year.

In the name of pedestrian safety, I implore the Glendale Police Department to, once again, with or without Councilman John Drayman's blessings, get out the rabbit and the radar.

My mother is recovering slowly, but her nightmares will never go away.

Maria Smart

La Crescenta

Antonovich is doing a great job

As a longtime resident of unincorporated La Crescenta, I couldn't disagree more with Chuck Rutlin's letter to the editor about Supervisor Mike Antonovich's many years in office ("New ideas needed from supervisor," Aug. 4).

As I drive around our fine foothill town and enjoy the many parks we have, as well as our brand new county library, I'm reminded of how important it is that we have a supervisor who's experienced in how the system works and who knows how to get things done.

One only needs to look at our current administration in Washington to be reminded of how things tend not to happen when someone who's inexperienced is placed in power. I hope we have Antonovich in office for decades to come!

Chuck Weiss

La Crescenta

Bell situation proves local gadfly's worth

With all the articles appearing in the local newspapers about the compensation abuse in the city of Bell, it seems as if many of the articles appearing on the issue were written by the notorious gadfly, Herbert Molano — such quotes as "The absence of transparency is a breeding ground for waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer dollars," as written in the Aug. 4 edition of the Los Angeles Times. How many times have we heard Molano preach those words at City Council meetings over the past few years?

Also, in the same section of that edition, in an article titled "Pension costs projected to grow to 1/3 of the city budget" referring to Los Angeles, the words "For every dollar you're paying into your pension systems, you're not paying into libraries, parks, and other city services." Another plea heard over and over from Molano at so many council meetings.

Are all the issues raised by Molano week after week really all lies and distortions as the mayor wants you to believe? Now, we have another councilman questioning Molano's repeated pleas for park space in south Glendale, stating that he holds a share of the responsibility for the lack of park space because he bought an apartment building in south Glendale.

What the councilman fails to recognize, the city council(s) in power during the time of the multifamily explosion in this part of town hold the ultimate responsibility for the condition that we are now experiencing, not the buyers of the apartment buildings, which the city wanted for revenue purposes.

The crisis that erupted in the city of Bell clearly points out the lack of transparency of public officials, and salary and pension levels approved by elected officials who were trusted to be financially responsible.

This does raise the question: Would this have happened if the city of Bell had the Herbert Molanos, Mike Mohills, Bruce Philpots and other concerned residents of Glendale who took the time to bring issues of public concern before their city council?

Something for our City Council members to ponder when lambasting Molano.

Albert Hofmann


Editor's note: Hofmann, who is writing on his own behalf, is president of the Glendale Homeowners Coordinating Council.

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