KHG 2016-2017 BOARD

President: Greg Melton
1st Vice President: Tracy Thrower Conyers
2nd Vice President: Ilan David
Secretary: Marion Koh
Treasurer: George Poppe

ELECTION TIME

Another fiscal year comes to a close in May and it’s time to start thinking about next year’s Board of Directors. Three of our five seats are up for election this year.

Our Board, made up completely of volunteer members, is responsible for making sure the Association follows our Declarations of Protective Restrictions (DPRs) and the Davis-Stirling Act, as well as setting policy and otherwise managing the operations of our Association.

Any member in good standing is eligible and welcome to stand for election to our Board. We especially need candidates with experience and/or an interest in architecture and finance.

You can nominate yourself or somebody else on our website at www.kentwoodhomeguardians.com/nominations.

We also need election volunteers. Let us know you can help at www.kentwoodhomeguardians.com/election-volunteers.

We expect to hold a candidate forum in April. You can find our Election Rules on our website at www.kentwoodhomeguardians.com/rules.

HOME RENOVATION REMINDER

Your Board would like to remind all members that exterior renovations must be approved by KHG’s Architectural Committee prior to the start of work commencing.

Submitting plans is easy:

  • Submit both a hardcopy and digital copy of your plans to our office (contact info on our website)
  • Your plans will be reviewed within 30 days of submission
  • Plans will not be denied unless they are contrary to our governing DPRs
  • If your plans are rejected by the Architectural Committee, you can appeal to the full Board

Please remember that the Architectural Committee’s job is to maintain compliance with the DPRs for the benefit of the entire community.

If you observe exterior renovations in our community, please report them to our office so that we can follow up for compliance, if necessary.

COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS

Covenant Presbyterian Church in Kentwood held its annual Community Connections event in late January. The event was intended to provide access by the community to local organizations. KHG had a table manned by our Board members. We enjoyed the opportunity to be out in the community where we got an opportunity to talk to a number of our members. A directory of participants is available on our website at www.kentwoodhomeguardians.com/resources.

ZONING CHANGES IN KENTWOOD

In March 2015, a temporary zoning change was applied to Kentwood that limited square footage and other design features that could be applied to home remodels and new builds in Kentwood. That change, by its own terms, expires in March 2017.

Tricia Keane, Councilman Bonin’s Director of Land Use & Planning, was KHG’s guest in September to describe zoning changes that are occurring across the entire City of LA, as well as the specific changes in Kentwood. You can find a recap of that talk on our blog.

The City Council recently approved Kentwood’s zoning under the new R1V2 (55% of the lot size for lots up to 6000’, with incremental down- sizes to 45% for lots that are 10,000+ feet. There are other minor restrictions, as well. We will forward links to the final approved zoning requirements when they are available. Please note that during the planning process, the “R1V2” designation was 45/35%, but the addition of the 55/45% designation mid-way through the process necessitated a renumbering of the sub-zones.

COYOTES IN KENTWOOD

Coyotes continue to be a problem in Playa del Rey and Westchester. There is a new mobile app created by the University of California Cooperative Extension called Coyote Cacher. The app has two goals: (1) to allow the public to easily report sightings to wildlife authorities so that informed management decisions can be made: and (2) to allow the public to get alerts related to sightings. Read more at www.scpr.org.

HOMELESS VEHICLE DWELLERS

The City of LA is taking another run at regulating the homeless living in cars and RVs. A new law became effective in January and enforcement began in early February. Parking for “habitation purposes” is banned on residential streets between 9 pm and 6 am. Living in a vehicle is prohibited at all times within one block (500’) of schools, pre-schools, daycare facilities and parks.

This is the City’s second attempt to control car-and RV-dwellers. The previous attempt was found unconstitutional by a federal appeals court in 2014. The current law is valid only until July 2018, at which time the City will evaluate its effectiveness.

NEIGHBOR SPOTLIGHT

KHG Member Stuart Blashill on Stewart shares his observations on living in Kentwood.

I am one of the many people of all ages that you might see out in the morning strolling, walking or running through the streets of Kentwood. While I know there is a good track at Loyola, I never use that luxury. Rather, I go through the streets for the entertainment value that provides. I could text, Tweet or listen to music while walking, but I don’t – I look around. And, I am always amazed at the diversity crammed into this small section of Los Angeles.

Of course, much of that diversity is due to Loyola and the students who have come here from all over the world. But, there is too much evidence to suggest other sources. Perhaps it’s the Chamber of Commerce weather or the influx of new residents due to Silicon Beach.  Perhaps it’s the reputation Kentwood has for being family-friendly and a small oasis amidst the bustle of the city. Whatever the reason, I know the diversity is here because of the walks. While I see some people observing and counting birds, particularly near Loyola, I observe and count license plates. On a typical walk of about 3 miles I average seeing license plates from about 29 US or Mexican states or Canadian Provinces. My record is 35.

I didn’t start out counting license plates. When we moved here in 2014 I was initially looking for landscaping ideas to fill in the blank spaces in our yard. But, that required I actually remember where I saw something I would later want to show my wife – but this was too difficult and required I concentrate more on the remembering than on the walking. This was not a good idea for someone over 65. I then switched to vehicles. I had been looking to replace my 13 year old small SUV and wanted ideas. During this phase I noticed that some streets had predominantly Fords and Chevrolets, while others had Toyotas and Nissans, and still others were almost exclusively BMWs and Mercedes. And, these placements did not seem to correlate to house size. So, I mulled that over for a few weeks, though I never did find a SUV I particularly liked.

But, one day I was walking down 80th and saw a license plate from Guam. I suppose intellectually I knew that Guam must have license plates, but who knew there would be one in Kentwood. And, a few steps later there was one from Hawaii, and then one from Baja California. Now, I’m a pretty competitive person, including with myself, so I just naturally just started counting the different plates I would see. I then began altering my route to see which streets offered the best chance for diversity. The interesting thing about that is it provided the evidence that the diversity is not all due to Loyola as many of the most far-away plates where not close to the University and they remain there year after year. And, some of those plates would be removed and the same car would have new California plates. I saw this happen for Indiana, West Virginia, North Carolina and Nebraska. These were residents, not students.

On a typical morning I’ll start out from Stewart, turn west on 80th and pick up Kentucky. A little further along is Utah. I’ll then get Connecticut, West Virginia, Nevada, Hawaii, New York, Oregon and others as I near Loyola. These are obviously students. I then might turn down Holy Cross and get Arizona, Alaska, Maine, Florida and New Jersey. On 83rd I’ll find New Mexico. Turning north on Loyola will be Tennessee, Washington and sometimes Louisiana. Back on 80th will be Idaho and Massachusetts. Cutting up Fordham for the great view of the Marina will get me Indiana, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and sometimes Missouri. Continuing down Altavan will be Wisconsin, Illinois and Montana. Hitting the end, I’ll find Alabama and Virginia as I walk towards 85th where I’ll find Ohio, Minnesota and Ontario. A left on Regis will provide Iowa and Kansas. The last two (Colorado and Wyoming) will be on Kenyon heading back home.

The great thing is that it’s never the same.  I might even walk the same path two days in a row and the cars will be different. South Dakota can pop up, or Georgia, or Chihuahua. I can never count on the count being the same.  But, I know there will be diversity.  This is life in Kentwood – reasonably stable, but enough change thrown in to make things interesting.

You can thank Stuart and/or share your comments on his essay by emailing him at srblashill@gmail.com.