👓 Half-million-dollar settlement offer would bar embattled director from ever returning to work at the Altadena Library | Pasadena Weekly

Read Half-million-dollar settlement offer would bar embattled director from ever returning to work at the Altadena Library by Andre Coleman (Pasadena Weekly)
A local attorney contends that an element of a settlement offer made by the Altadena Library Board of Trustees to embattled Library District Director Mindy Kittay would bind future boards in choosing a qualified person to run the library. In a letter to Jeffrey Thompson, lawyer for the Library District, Kittay’s attorney Dale Gronemeier said his client, who is currently on administrative leave, would not agree to a $501,000 settlement offer if it included a clause prohibiting Kittay from accepting future employment at the library. “Director Kittay does not assert an entitlement to be the next full-time director, but she will not agree to prevent the new board from bringing her back if it chooses to do so,” Gronemeier wrote.

Sounds like she’s a relatively innovative librarian following the trends of many local libraries in the US to redefine themselves. It’s sad to have a contentious outcome like this with such a huge settlement in which the money could have been far better used for public good instead of in-fighting like this. We deserve better from our public officials.

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Following local Altadena and Pasadena News

I’ve been thinking more about local news lately, so I’ve taken some time to aggregate some of my local news sources. While I live in the Los Angeles area, it’s not like I’m eschewing the Los Angeles Times, but I wanted to go even more uber-local than this. Thus I’m looking more closely at my local Altadena and Pasadena news outlets. I’m a bit surprised to see just how many small outlets and options I’ve got! People say local news is dying or dead, so I thought I would only find two or three options–how wrong could I have been?

In addition to some straightforward journalistic related news sources, I’ve also included some additional local flavor news which includes town councils, the chamber of commerce, historical societies, etc. which have websites that produce feeds with occasional news items.

Going forward you can see these sources aggregated on my following page.

For those who are interested I’ve created an OPML file which contains the RSS feeds of all these sources if they’d like to follow them as well. Naturally most have other social media presences, but there’s usually no guarantee that if you followed them that way that you’ll actually see the news you wanted.

If anyone is aware of other sources, I’m happy to add them to the list.

Here’s the initial list of sources:

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👓 Riding the Locals’ Favorite: El Prieto, Altadena, California | Singletracks Mountain Bike News

Read Riding the Locals’ Favorite: El Prieto, Altadena, California by Greg Heil (Singletracks.com)
El Prieto has been hailed by many as one of the best singletrack rides in the Los Angeles area. After hearing such accolades, I just had to check it out! And let me tell you: the reputation is not unfounded. To start the ride, park at the lot and head past the upper yellow gate on the paved road. Af...

It’s been a few years since I’ve ridden this trail, and I remember the trail itself being excellent, but don’t remember the ride up being as nice as described here–at least not in the open fire roads during the high heat of the day.

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The Pepper Drive Parade

Our local neighborhood gets together at 10am on the 4th of July for a neighborhood parade. There are far more people in the parade than watching it, so it’s more like a gathering at the top of the street in preparation followed by a procession to the bottom of the street where there’s another gathering with snacks and drinks. Those who are along the parade route seem to eventually join the parade and walk to the end for the party.

There were some truly creative little costumes and decorations, but I think my favorite part of the parade today was a bewildered coyote that was coming up the street in the opposite direction of the parade who was shocked to see a mob of people with horses and a firetruck coming down the street. He managed to run off down a side street and escape.

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Photos from this afternoon’s walk in Eaton Canyon

Photos from this afternoon's walk in Eaton Canyon

Some images from the walk down to Eaton Canyon this afternoon. There was enough rain over the last few days that there’s a lot of water still running through the arroyo. So much so that I didn’t want to chance crossing it to see the waterfall at the end.

I caught some video of the water flowing through as well. This portion is rather wide and shallow so it’s much slower than other portions. Typically this section of the arroyo is bone dry for almost 360 days of the year.

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Wilson Fire in my front yard

Apparently the forest fire started around 4 am on Mount Wilson and has been burning relatively steadily since.

This isn’t the closest fire to the house–that award goes to a medium sized brush fire about 8 doors down when I lived on Adams Hill in 2012, which was out in just a few hours–but it is the closest and the largest thus far. While it would take me about 3.5 hours to hike to the location of the fire, it’s because it’s located on a mountain and would take some winding mountain paths as well as a 4,700 foot climb. Sadly, most everything between us and the fire is all dry brush.

Fortunately today it’s not as hot or as windy as it has been here for the past month. Typically the winds have been to the North West this month, which would potentially serve to protect the house. The fire isn’t very close to residential neighborhoods (ours is the closest though), but there is an estimated $500 million in infrastructure and assets at the top of the hill as it is the home of the Wilson Observatory as well as a multitude of broadcast equipment for all of the major LA television and several radio stations.

Since at least 9am, I’ve been seeing a rotation of at least three helicopters and a large plane (747?) doing water drops on the hillside to battle the fire. Some of the photos above have these aircraft visible.

I still vividly remember the massive Station Fire in this area from August 2009 that still stands as one of the nation’s largest and significantly threatened the Observatory at the top of the hill above us. I was in San Diego the day the fire started and still remember the massive pyrocumulus cloud that I could vividly see the entire drive back home to Los Angeles.

Sadly, site deaths (thanks FriendFeed) have not preserved the photos, but here are a few tweets almost a week apart about the original:

Updates

4:00 am Fire reported
8:00 am 26 acres burning and 0% contained
9:00 am the blaze had burned about 30 acres and and was 5 percent contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service
4:00 pm No visible smoke apparent from the Pasadena side facing North, but the fire is still blazing
9:00 pm No visible fire from the Pasadena side still, but fire is still at 30 acres and 25% containment

News articles

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