January 14, 2015

Wildlife Crossing Grant Needs Support Letters

Because of the recent death of a mountain lion, in addition to deer, coyotes and other wildlife, trying unsuccessfully to cross the 101 freeway in the Liberty Canyon area of Agoura Hills, an exciting new wildlife freeway crossing is now being planned. The 101 freeway creates an impenetrable barrier for wildlife that is essentially trapped on one side of the freeway or the other, resulting in inbreeding and high animal mortality rates.

The attempted crossings on the freeway also create dangerous conflict between wildlife and high-speed traffic. We now have the opportunity to start a landmark project that will help connect an entire ecosystem from the Simi Hills on the north to the ocean, with a naturalized wildlife crossing of the freeway itself.

On Thursday, January 29, the State Coastal Conservancy will be acting on an application filed by the National Wildlife Federation for $1 million in voter-passed resource bond funds that will allow Caltrans to do the necessary initial project and design review.

The Coastal Conservancy takes community support for projects into serious consideration in deciding whether a grant will be approved.  
Please consider doing either, or both, of the following:
1) Send a simple email in support of the “Liberty Canyon Wildlife Overcrossing” to the State Coastal Conservancy at
druddock@scc.ca.gov and copy kara.seward@sen.ca.gov at Senator Pavley’s District Office. It must be received no later than Sunday, January 25.

2) The meeting will be held at Ventura City Hall, Council Chambers, 501 Poli Street, Ventura at 11:00 a.m., January 29. If you are able to attend and read your letter to the State Conservancy Board in person, that would be a powerful expression of support.

January 11, 2015

Agoura Hills Opens Community Center

Congratulations to the City of Agoura Hills on the grand opening of its beautiful new Recreation and Events Center.

Sited up against Ladyface Mountain off Reyes Adobe Road, and overlooking city hall and the entire city, the building’s architectural design pays homage to Agoura Hills’ identification as Gateway to the Santa Monicas.

Public art pieces incorporated in the landscaping include the mountain lion, bobcat, rattlesnake, and Red-Tailed Hawk, all iconic inhabitants of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area that mark the southern edge of our city.

January 2, 2015

Happy New Year from AgouraHillsTomorrow.org

One year ago, we founded AgouraHillsTomorrow.org to help preserve the vision of our city as Gateway to the Santa Monica Mountains, and to provide a historical perspective on policies enacted at the beginning of cityhood and why they may still be relevant today.

Each of us has had the privilege of serving as Mayor of Agoura Hills, beginning with the very first City Council in 1982. Before that, we were just “Agoura,” a western outpost of L.A. County. Peaceful and still rural, families were drawn here from the stresses of urban living by our oak-studded hills, cool breezes, and the promise of a special place to put down roots.
But some saw our region as an opportunity for unfettered development, bringing massive grading of hillsides, traffic congestion, loss of heritage oaks, runaway billboards, and the excessive glare of  commercial light pollution dominating our night skies and moonlit ridgelines.

Although we lived on the fringe of the Los Angeles megalopolis, we were determined not to be swallowed up by it. Since 1982, in election after election, that determination has held.

As we begin this new year, we will be sharing our thoughts on issues that we believe impact our high quality of life. Mostly, however, we want to hear from you. What is your vision for Agoura Hills for the next 20 years? What changes have you seen that you feel have benefited the city? What changes would you like to see made?

This blog is sent to everyone on our City Council and the City Manager. We intend it to be a positive opportunity for all Agoura Hills residents to participate in shaping the City’s future. We hope you will find it interesting, and that you will be a part of the discussion over the next year. Thank you!

Former mayors Fran Pavley, Ed Corridori, Louise Rishoff, Joan Yacovone, Dan Kuperberg, Darlene McBane, Jack Koenig, Jeff Reinhardt