Thursday, October 17, 2019

City News Council approves 4-way stop for Granada Dr intersection Also: Election season nears

La Mirada-

The city council approved the installation of a four-way stop sign at the intersection of Granada Dr and Los Coyotes Ave/Monticello Dr. during a recent meeting.

The recommendation was made by a county traffic engineer after a comprehensive traffic study was conducted on Granada Dr. from La Mirada Bl. to Stamy Rd.

The study found that children were passing through the intersection as a main walking route to and from school while traffic volume on Granada Dr had increased to an average of 2.740 vehicles per day, an 11% increase from three years ago. 

On Los Coyotes Av which along with Monticello Dr. already have a two-way stop in place at the intersection Granada Dr., has seen traffic volume increase 31% since 2016.

A request will also be made with Caltrans requesting removal of Granada Dr as a designated collector road on maps of the California Roads System to local road.

Classification as a local road will allow the Sheriff's Department to conduct radar speed enforcement at the 25 mph basic speed limit for residential streets. 

Currently, in order to use radar to enforce a speed limit, the state vehicle mandates that a survey must be done on a collector route and the speed limit set at the speed 85% of motorists are driving on the road in free-flowing conditions. The limit can be lowered from that number on roads with high accident rates

The current 85th percentile speed on Granada is 36 mph. and would likely result in a speed limit posted at 35 mph before speed enforcement could take place using radar.  The new designation will allow radar enforcement at 25 mph once the change is accepted.

Date selected for city council elections

         City Council Districts Map (Source: City of La Mirada)

A resolution was passed without discussion setting March 3, 2020, as the date city elections will be held allowing residents to choose the first members to represent council districts #3, #4, and #5.

If it seems a long time since you last voted in a city election, it has been. Here is why.

A state law mandating city elections in general law cities be held on one of the two days statewide elections are held in primary and election years required La Mirada end its practice of holding local elections during years when statewide balloting was not conducted,

Council terms were extended another year so a term for a given seat would expire at the same time the election to fill the seat for a new term was to be held.

In 2015, state lawmakers passed SB-415 establishing California's concurrent-elections in an effort to boost voter participation.

La Mirada chose 2020 as the year the change would go into effect making it five years since a majority of residents last voted in a city council race.

Councilmember Ed Eng, a resident of District 3 which covers most of Green Hills, Hillsborough, and the area near Los Coyotes Middle School is expected to seek re-election. Real estate agent John Accornero has announced he intends on running for the same seat while Eng has not made a public announcement yet.

Councilmembers Larry Mowles and Mayor Steve DeRuse both hail from District 4 covering most of the southwest portion of the city and are approaching the end of their extended terms. 

It seems unlikely the two will run again each other for another term. A lot of eyes will be watching to see who takes out nomination papers and who does not. There is a wealth of qualified candidates that have experience serving on city commissions, committees, and local service groups residing in the district. 

This could be an interesting contest if both incumbents decide to step aside.

The District #5 seat will be a wide-open affair with those seeking election not having to contend with an incumbent to compete against.

Located in the north-central area of La Mirada, the district includes the Creek Park area south to Regional Park, then makes a gerrymander-like jaunt avoiding Biola University to include a neighborhood south of the school north of Rosecrans. End-to-end  the district extends more than three miles  

Former Community Services Commissioner Dustin Dahl has expressed interest in a run for the District 5 seat. A well-known local figure is also rumored to be showing more than just a passing interest.

Diamond Anniversary logo considered

During its monthly study session that is held prior to the regular meeting, staff was expected to discuss the design of a special city logo to mark La Mirada's 60th anniversary next year.

Council will choose from three submissions the logo marking the city's diamond anniversary that will be incorporated into a temporary city seal, social media sites including Twitter and Facebook, and on publications including the La Mirada Living newsletter mailed out to residents throughout the year.

La Mirada became the county's 68th city on March 23, 1960, with the name Mirada Hills due to a local formation technicality. Voters approved changing the name of the city to La Mirada eight months later back to the name of which the community was developed and was accustomed to.