By Brandon HENSLEY
There is one more candidate left for the Crescenta Valley Town Council to hear before elections for L.A. County Supervisor are held. Kathryn Barger will speak before the council and audience at the May 19 CVTC meeting.
The two candidates for the fifth district supervisor seat who spoke at the April 21 meeting were L.A. County Deputy District Attorney Elan Carr and Glendale Councilman Ara Najarian. While Najarian spoke on many issues facing the foothills, Carr homed more on one specific issue, and did not address issues such as open space or the 710 Freeway tunnel expansion.
Carr, a criminal gang prosecutor and Iraq War veteran, is noted for being tough on crime. He is running on that, as he said in his mission statement video on his website. Carr wants to invest in education and grow afterschool programs to help keep kids off the streets. He also wants to give law enforcement the modern tools to fight crime.
But council president Leslie Dickson said Carr’s speech may have been too focused on that issue. Other candidates who have spoken to council this year, including Bob Huff and Mitch Englander, touched on subjects Crescenta Valley residents are more in tune with. Those included fighting against the 710 expansion, efforts to preserve Verdugo Hills Golf Course and the debate over the high-speed rail passing through the area.
Najarian is an outspoken critic of the 710 project and is a supporter for preserving the golf course. He reiterated those points at the meeting.
Barger, who is outgoing supervisor Mike Antonovich’s chief of staff, will have her chance next month.
“This district is a large district, and I think it’s important for those who are running to have an understanding what the Crescenta Valley is about, and what we hold dear to us,” Dickson said. “I’m very pleased [the speakers] have been able to come out. I know it’s been beneficial to those who have [attended].
“It’s given people an opportunity to speak to the people face-to-face and meet them and to get a better understanding of the politics of the people running for supervisor.”
Dickson praised councilmember Mike Claessens for being the point man in bringing the candidates to speak to council this year.
“It’s quite an undertaking. I’m very pleased that he was able to do that for us,” she said. “He’s done an amazing job.”
Also touched on was the Wednesday evening community outreach forum on the beautification project that La Crescenta will be undertaking. Town Council has secured $1 million from Antonovich’s office for a project that will include landscaped medians on Foothill Boulevard.
Earlier this week, Dickson said residents have given the CVTC mostly positive feedback, and that support has grown over time. There are people, she said, who are “no” against the medians, per se, and who think money like this would be better allocated elsewhere.
“Unfortunately, the way this project works is we either spend the money on the medians or we don’t spend it at all,” Dickson said.
The next CVTC meeting is scheduled for May 19 at the La Crescenta Library, 2809 Foothill Blvd. Along with Barger, items on the agenda will include handing out town council scholarships to graduating high school students.