The Glendale City Council meeting of March 22 got under way with Mayor Ara Najarian’s declaration of March 2011 as Cesar Chavez Month in the city of Glendale.
“Cesar Chavez was a figure that conveyed hope and determination, especially to minorities in their struggle with prejudice, injustice, and hardship, inspired an entire generation of Americans to public service, and struggled to raise the living conditions of farm workers. His struggles for social justice raised the consciousness of the American labor movement. Chavez’s calls for [non violent change] were consistent with the pillars of a democratic society and serves as a heroic role model for others to follow,” proclaimed Mayor Najarian.
Receiving the city’s proclamation was a representative from the Glendale Latino Association.
Afterward, Councilman Dave Weaver brought to attention that the city needs to find a way to deal with staving off the business from puppy mills. “I watch Animal Planet quite often,” mentioned Weaver. “I see what happens to dogs and cats that are abused. And I’ve seen plenty of what happens in puppy mills. I understand that we have at least one store in Glendale that does sell puppy mill dogs. The Humane Society is loaded with adoptable animals. I’d like to put it on the agenda about finding a way to outlaw puppy mills in Glendale.” Councilman John Drayman seconded the motion.
Especially pertinent to Montrose was the city’s review of its signage laws. Councilman John Drayman has lambasted the city in the past for issuing tickets to “mom and pop” stores along Honolulu Avenue that placed signs along the sidewalk to attract business.
Hassan Haghani, director of Community Planning, assured that upon the council’s consent, it would initiate procedures to amend the signage laws. The Community Planning Department would meet with various stakeholders that are affected by these laws so as to reach a compromise and amendment. Areas that would benefit from the signage law change would be the Montrose Shopping Park and Sparr Heights. Haghani assured the council that the amendment would only apply to areas in a business direct or merchant’s association. The council then unanimously approved initiating proceedings to amend the signage law.
During the oral communications, Barry Allen and Mike Mohill appeared on the council dais once more with allegations of misconduct and corruption against John Drayman and Dave Weaver. While Allen proceeded to lob accusations at the council, Councilman Drayman looked on with obvious amusement from his seat.
Defending Drayman were various members of the community. Resident Lynn Myers, in particular, aimed her vitriol at Allen. “I was here last week to update on an old con-man that conned people into donating money into a fund,” said Myers. Noting that Allen has used numerous aliases in the past to obscure his crimes, she mentioned that she was one of Allen’s victims. “I feel it is incumbent of me to return here just as much as he does to remind the people of this city that [Barry Allen] is not trustworthy – not by a long stretch.” She then proceeded to laud Councilman Drayman and decried the smear campaign conducted by detractors. “They’ll soon find themselves with egg on their face,” she said.
Echoing Myers’s sentiments were Robert Thompson and his wife as well as William Weisman. Both praised Drayman’s character and ethics and mentioned the dubious ethics of some local media saying that they have an agenda. Thompson categorized the attacks as, “Yet another attempt to disgrace the integrity, and character of John Drayman.”
Councilwoman Laura Friedman assured Drayman’s detractors that Drayman is held to the same rule of law as every other citizen. She then asked the City Attorney Scott Howard whether this was so. “We have no case in our office,” informed Howard.
Drayman, in his turn, called the attacks on him “surreal” and questioned whether articles concerning him have more to do with selling papers than printing the truth.