slings and arrows

slings and arrows

Hearing on archery range brings even more questions

By André Coleman 09/26/2013

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The Pasadena City Council's attention to the Lower Arroyo Archery Range raises a lot of questions.
For instance, didn't the people who bought homes atop the hills that surround the range realize people were shooting arrows at the bottom of those hills?

Also, if arrows are being found in people's backyards, as critics of the range claim, why weren't those homeowners at the City Council meeting Monday, where those and other issues related to the range were hashed out publicly well past midnight?

Last but not least, several people have called to ask me exactly what the nearby residents were objecting to in the city's proposal. The proposed agreement between the city and the Pasadena Roving Archers (PRA), which manages the range, would have required archers to attend training classes, forced the PRA to carry a $1 million liability insurance policy, increased city revenue made from the range, forced the PRA to do away with the unsightly storage bin and have on-site monitors at all training classes and events.

That one I can answer, they are opposed to the amount of space that the city has designated solely for the archery range

The council sent the issue back to the Recreation and Parks Commission for more study, I expect the two sides to reach a compromise early next year. While we're at it, why aren't bikes allowed in certain parts of the lower arroyo?

More archery: Councilman Terry Tornek said he witnessed a woman walk through the archery range and then proclaim "It's my park and I am going to use it."

Pasadena Municipal Code 3.32.030.a states that archery is a permitted activity and all recreational activities are to take place within "defined activity areas." The area is designated for archery.

Also, PMC 3.32.030 says that all permitted activities are allowed to remain in the Arroyo, but none are allowed to expand. In context with the prior municipal code about activity areas, it's clear that expansion refers to physical space, not the number of participants.
Adding a hiking trail through the archery range appears to be an illegal expansion of the hiking area.

By the way, unidentified lady who walked through the range, it is not your park.

The issue should come back to council near the end of the year.

Stay tuned.

Something is wrong with this picture: According to the Pasadena Star-News, Pasadena City College porn professor Hugo Schwyzer admitted to having sex with a female student on campus, which is a violation of college policy. Yet, he was never fired or even placed on administrative leave. Ironically, after a 43-year-old student accused PCC journalism professor Warren Swil of showing him nude pictures of Swil - an allegation that Swil denies - the veteran journalism professor was placed on administrative leave, escorted off campus by police, and then the college released detailed documents about his hiring. Is it just me, or is there something seriously wrong with this scenario?

IT'S JUST A PHONE: I don't understand people standing in line overnight - or three days, in this case - to buy the latest iPhone or any other electronic gadget. The brawls and other nonsense that happened on Friday as people waited for the Apple Store to open on Colorado Boulevard could guarantee an increased police response at the Apple Store when the company rolls out its next version of the iPhone.

Think about it: Councilman Kennedy is pushing for a study examining the effectiveness of police oversight committees. I applaud him for seeking the study. However, if the point is that we cannot trust the city to hold the police accountable, how could we trust any oversight committee that comes out of a city-initiated process?

Asking the city to create such a board would be like asking the fox to choose another fox to protect the henhouse. That formula will only result in another city commission full of council appointed members.

Maybe the answer is for a group of concerned citizens to begin their own oversight group outside of the city's purview. That group could be truly independent and could foster more community involvement.

More money: Local politicians are spending a lot of money to win tight races. According to final expenditure forms, Kennedy raised $139,688 earlier this year during his campaign for the District 3 seat on the Pasadena City Council. In total, Kennedy spent $137,734. The record for local campaign spending, as far as I know, still belongs to Madison, who raised $181,699 in 2011 to beat challenger Carolyn Naber. When it was all said and done, according to campaign statements filed with City Clerk Mark Jomsky's office, Madison spent $211,219 after accrued bills and nonmonetary adjustments were totaled in.

The winner of the 2015 mayoral race - which, according to recent rumors, could include Madison, Tornek and local restaurant owner Robin Salzer - may have to spend $250,000 to win the election. n


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Especially in regional politics, while "The Best (wo)Man" may or may not win any particular election, the most heavily financed almost always will. This is why America is, functionally, a corporatocracy.


posted by DanD on 9/26/13 @ 11:05 a.m.

The complaint that was most often voiced, the one that's at the top of the various emails being circulated, is the claim that the PRA is demanding "exclusive use" of the range. This is a misrepresentation of the facts.

First, all scheduled PRA activities are open to the public.

Second, according to Pasadena Municipal Code 3.24.030 G: "The city manager may permit any facility or a part of any park to be used for events other than those for which the facilities or grounds were designated, upon such terms as he shall determine to be reasonable, and the contract for such use shall state such terms."

It is written into the city's legal code that no group can have "exclusive use" of any park facility; if an individual or group wants to put on an event of any kind at the archery range, they have only to contact Public Works and arrange for a permit.

Third, PRA is only allowed to use the range for a few periods on a couple of days a week; the rest of the time, the area is an open archery range that anyone can use.

It is not an "exclusive use," it's an exclusive activity.

But if we take another look at that Municipal Code, the prior clause has something very interesting to say about park users:

"The director of public works or the director of human services may exclude from any facility under his jurisdiction any individual whose presence is detrimental to the enjoyment of the facility by others or whose conduct is offensive to the public and a nuisance. Such person may appeal his exclusion to the board of directors." - PMC 3.24.030 F.

Here's the interesting part: at the range, there is a sign posted near the footbridge, and another on the trail at the south end of the range (though that one is covered with graffiti and unreadable) stating the range rules, including the direct statement "Do not walk between shooting positions and targets.- PMC 3.24"

That note about PMC refers to this section, which gives the City Manager and Public Works the legal right to create and enforce whatever rules they feel are appropriate. Under PMC 3.24.030 F, anyone who walks through the archery range can not only be cited and fined, but barred from visiting the park again.

If only the city would enforce their own laws.

posted by JimMacQ on 9/27/13 @ 12:20 p.m.

Well JimMacQ, since I can criticize neither the logic you use nor the facts you present, I'll just nitpick at your grammer ... actually, you should relate:

"If only the city would enforce its own laws," or perhaps; "If only the city's code enforcers would faithfully do their job even when it's not strategically popular with some of the horseshoe crowd ~"

Which leads us to another question, who's responsible for code enforcement encompassing this particular venue? Come on PW, give us a flowchart complete with the "chain-of-command" names.


posted by DanD on 9/27/13 @ 04:37 p.m.


posted by DanD on 9/27/13 @ 04:38 p.m.

I am disabled and nobody is talking about us. I think, as far as the city is concerned we don't exist, don't vote, or don't matter. Time for a wake up call!

Why is the city ignoring their own multi-million dollar master plan which called for making the lower arroyo more accessible to the disabled. I hear lip service about making the lower arroyo available for all to enjoy but who is "all"?

Why are people who are currently on council wavering against their own master plan? I can only imagine these people with finger in the air testing to see which way the wind is blowing (or money is flowing). We can do better. We deserve better. Can you say accountability?

I can't jog, hike, or walk my dog but, while it is a struggle to get to the range because the city has done nothing about accessibility, I can shoot arrows at a target and the archers don't treat me as if I am a burden.

Politicians who voted for the plan but now sit on a fence are hypocrites. They voted for the master plan so shouldn't they stand by their multimillion dollar investment? Evidently not because I am not seeing any of the recommendations in "their" plan implemented. At least I am seeing very...very little.

We know who funded and passed the master plan. One of them is the Mayor and another is the councilman for our district. If they think we wasted our money, they should be held accountable because it was not "we" but "they" who wasted our money. Man up boys.

There is one group in the Arroyo that cares about the disabled. It's not the hikers, it's not the dog walkers, it's not the joggers, and it is not the horseback riders. It's the archers. The archers are the only group in the park offering activities to the disabled.

Kick them out and you kick me out. I am disabled but I am not dead.

posted by DisabledNotDead on 9/27/13 @ 10:50 p.m.
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