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Monrovia's Population Is ... Down!

According to the Community Development Department's "Over the Counter" blog, the latest stats show Monrovia's population has ... decreased.

By 0.1 percent. LA County's population has also gone down a bit, though the state's population is up 0.5 percent. https://is.gd/fkwuEu

Comment: Hmm. Hard to fathom. I hadn't noticed homes getting emptier, and all those new multi-unit developments next to the train station. Maybe its that the kids are moving out of town since they can't afford to live here anymore.

- Brad Haugaard

Hotel Planned for Myrtle Next to Train Station? Sales Tax Study; Air Strippers

Before its Tuesday, May 7 meeting (https://is.gd/JmZwEG) the Monrovia City Council will ...

~ Hold a 5 p.m. session to study a possible sales tax for Monrovia. (Max out our sales tax so Monrovia gets to keep the money instead of letting the county max it out and letting it get the money.) https://is.gd/miABrM

~ Hold a 5:45 p.m. closed session (https://is.gd/c31KBJ) about the three properties on the west side of Myrtle just north of the train station. The report indicates that Hotels International (Is that actually "Choice Hotels International"?) is interested in the properties.

~ In the same closed session discuss price and terms of the property at 347 Highland Place, a residential property up next to the Wilderness Area.

~ In a second study session at 6:45 p.m. discuss "2019-2020 City Council Appointments."

~  Then -- we're finally getting to the regular 7:30 p.m. meeting -- consider awarding a  $343,240 contract to RC Foster Corporation to rehab Air Stripper Towers 1 & 2. These devices use air to strip contaminants out of our water supply. https://is.gd/27U85E

- Brad Haugaard

School Board: Replace Heat and A/C at Plymouth and Clifton; Mental Health; Etc.

At its next meeting (agenda: https://is.gd/rDewAt) the Monrovia Board of Education will ...

~  Consider replacing the heating and air conditioning systems at Plymouth and Clifton schools, using state money. https://is.gd/LGw7GH

~ Receive an update on school district efforts to promote mental health awareness.

~ Receive an informational report on the Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) Plan for Canyon Oaks High School by Flint Fertig, Director of Adult Education & Alternative Programs.

~ Consider an agreement with the LA County Office of Education - through its Center for Distance and Online Learning - to implement "Scale Up!," a professional development program. https://is.gd/CJb6Z3

- Brad Haugaard

Wildrose Students Perform at Ahmanson

Monrovia Schools tweets that: "After finishing a 17-week training course with trained theater professionals, students from Wild Rose School of Creative Arts were invited to perform at the Ahmanson as part of the Disney Musicals in Schools grant!"

- Brad Haugaard

Canyon Oaks/Mountain Park Library Being Dedicated to Stallers

Canyon Oaks High School and Mountain Park School will dedicate its library in honor of Bruce and Mariellen Staller on Monday, May 6 at 2:30 p.m.

"Mariellen, who recently passed away, dedicated countless hours alongside Bruce to the schools, and had an immeasurable impact on students! Due to their hard-work and dedication, the schools' library now houses more than 7,000 volumes and periodicals, as well as multiple multi-media sources."

If you'd like to attend, RSVP to Shershonna Huff at shuff@monroviaschools.net.

Source: Monrovia Schools press release

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia High Students Create Winning Films

Two public service announcements created by Monrovia High School students have been selected as winners in a statewide film contest for Mental Health Month.

The MHS English department (scripts), Theater Arts Conservancy (actors) and Digital Studies Academy (film production) collaborated on PSAs about Suicide Prevention. Five of these films were submitted for judging, and ...

"We are thrilled to report that of the five submissions, two are regional award winners: Regional First Place ('Life in the Black') and Regional Honorable Mention ('You Are Not Alone')! Winning students will be honored by our MUSD School Board at the meeting on May 8th and at a Red Carpet Award Ceremony at the historic Theater at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles on May 21st."

- Brad Haugaard

Lunch at Old Town Pizza

Lunch at Old Town Pizza, right across from the library on Myrtle. I got an antipasto salad for $8.99 and an iced tea $1.69. I was happy with it. 

- Brad Haugaard 

100 Dollar Reward For Reporting Threats of Violence Against Monrovia Schools


For more information call 256-8020 or 256-8036.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Purse Stolen from Car; Drunks and More Drunks; Money Bag Snatched; Etc.

[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for Highlighted Activity for April 25 – May 1. - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 379 service events, resulting in 76 investigations.

Residential Burglary
On April 26 at 9:10 a.m., a resident in the 700 block of W. Walnut called police to report their apartment had been burglarized. Someone entered the apartment through the back door and took a laptop computer, two purses and a wallet. Investigation continuing.

Possession of a Controlled Substance / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspect Arrested
On April 26 at 3:03 p.m., an officer stopped a vehicle for a vehicle code violation in the 1600 block of S. Mountain. During the investigation, he obtained consent to search the vehicle and found methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. The driver was arrested and taken into custody.

Defrauding an Innkeeper
On April 26 at 9:08 p.m., an employee from a hotel in the 700 block of W. Huntington called to report a theft. A male subject used a credit card to check into a room and proceeded to make several charges to the room. The hotel employee realized the credit card did not go through and confronted the subject; he fled without paying. Investigation continuing.

Grand Theft Auto
On April 26 at 9:35 p.m., a vehicle was reported stolen from a business parking lot in the 1600 block of S. Mountain. The victim reported that sometime while he was shopping in the store, his vehicle was taken from the parking lot. The investigation in ongoing.

Weapon Offense – Suspect Arrested
On April 26 at 10:04 p.m., three subjects were reported arguing and causing a disturbance in the street near Lemon and Bradbury. Officers responded and contacted the subjects. Officers discovered that one of the subjects had an unsheathed, fixed-blade knife on his person. He was arrested for the weapon offense and taken into custody.

Public Intoxication
On April 27 at 1:43 a.m., a resident in the 100 block of El Nido called to report a subject yelling in the street. Officers arrived and contacted the subject, who was determined to be under the influence of alcohol and unable to care for himself. He was arrested for public intoxication and held for a sobering period.

Vehicle Burglary
On April 27 at 2:24 a.m., a resident in the 900 block of W. Foothill called police to report a vehicle burglary. She heard her car alarm sounding, went outside and discovered her purse was taken from her vehicle. Officers responded and checked the area, but no suspect was located. Investigation continuing.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
On April 27 at 2:24 a.m., an officer on patrol conducted a traffic stop for a vehicle code violation in the area of Myrtle and Longden. During the stop, the driver displayed signs of being under the influence of alcohol. Field sobriety tests were conducted and the subject was determined to be driving under the influence. The subject was arrested for DUI and held for a sobering period.

Public Intoxication / No Bail Warrants – Suspect Arrested
On April 27 at 10:16 a.m., a business owner in the 600 block of S. Myrtle reported a male subject in the alley yelling. Officers arrived and found the subject heavily intoxicated and unable to care for his own safety. A computer check revealed he had two no-bail warrants out for his arrest. The subject was arrested and taken into custody.

Vehicle Burglary
On April 27 at 11:00 a.m., a resident of an apartment complex in the 500 block of W. Duarte walked outside his home and discovered someone had burglarized his vehicle sometime during the night. It is unknown how the suspect gained entry to the vehicle, but several personal items were stolen. This investigation is continuing.

Non-Injury Traffic Collision
On April 27 at 8:25 p.m., a traffic collision was reported in the area of Mountain and Evergreen. A motorist was traveling west across Mountain from the Walmart shopping center to the Home Depot shopping center. Another motorist was traveling south on Mountain, approaching the Home Depot entrance. The drivers did not see one another and collided. An investigation was conducted and a report was taken.

Public Intoxication – Suspect Arrested
On April 27 at 10:28 p.m., a resident in the 200 block of W. Foothill called to report a disturbing subject. Officers arrived, located the subject and determined he was too intoxicated to care for his own safety or the safety of others. He was arrested for public intoxication and held for a sobering period.

Traffic Collision / Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
On April 28 at 7:07 p.m., a caller reported a collision in the area of Myrtle and Central. Officers responded and conducted an investigation. The driver at fault displayed signs of being under the influence of alcohol. Field sobriety test were conducted and a DUI investigation was started. The subject was arrested for DUI and held for a sobering period.

Solo Vehicle Traffic Collision / Driving Under the Influence
On April 28 at 8:24 p.m., a caller reported seeing a vehicle drive off the 210 Freeway and down the embankment. Officers responded, searched the area and located the vehicle with the assistance of an airship. The driver was not injured and displayed signs of being under the influence of alcohol. Since this occurred on the freeway, the California Highway Patrol responded and conducted the DUI investigation.

Domestic Violence – Suspect Arrested
On April 28 at 9:00 p.m., a resident in the 1000 block of Maurice called to report a verbal disturbance at a neighboring home. Officers arrived and contacted the subjects. After a thorough investigation, it was determined domestic violence did occur and the primary aggressor was arrested and taken into custody. An Emergency Protective Order was granted.

Bicycle Theft
On April 29 at 12:03 p.m., a resident in the 1100 block of S. Fifth called police to report a theft. The resident received an email from his property management regarding a break-in at the storage area. The victim walked to his storage unit and saw his bicycle had been taken. Investigation continuing.

Municipal Code Violation
On April 29, at 7:45 p.m., an officer was on patrol in the 300 block of S. Myrtle when she saw two subjects in possession of open containers of alcohol. The officer contacted the subjects and issued them citations for possession alcohol in a park.

Vehicle Burglary
On April 30 at 5:39 a.m., a resident in the 800 block of W. Duarte called police to report a vehicle burglary. The victim left his backpack inside his vehicle, which was parked in the carport. Someone smashed one of the windows on the vehicle and removed the backpack. Investigation continuing.

Robbery
On April 30 at 11:51 a.m., an employee of a business in the 900 block of W. Duarte called to report a robbery that just occurred. A male subject was walking out of the store with a bank bag in his hands. A male suspect approached him and forcefully grabbed the bank bag from the victim’s hands and fled, running north through the parking lot and out of sight. The investigation is continuing.

Possession of a Controlled Substance / Warrants – Suspect Arrested
On May 1 at 3:06 a.m., an officer stopped a bicycle for a vehicle code violation near the intersection of Myrtle and Olive. The subject had a warrant for his arrest and was found to have methamphetamine in the pocket of his pants. The subject was arrested.

Burglary
On May 1 at 10:21 a.m., officers responded to the 200 block of W. Foothill regarding a commercial burglary. Several items of merchandise were stolen from a display case. This investigation is continuing.

Petty Theft
On May 1 at 12:32 p.m., a victim reported her wallet stolen from inside her purse while in the 600 block of W. Huntington. The suspect used a credit card belonging to the victim shortly after the theft. This investigation is continuing.

Shoplifting
On May 1 at 7:43 p.m., officers responded to a report of a male suspect who had just stolen merchandise from a business in the 1600 block of S. Mountain. The suspect left in a vehicle, but the reporting party was able to retrieve a license plate number. This investigation is continuing.

Learn to Make a Ribbon Lei at Library

The Art of Ribbon Lei-Making, Saturday May 4, 1-3 p.m. at the Library's Community Room. "Join us in learning some of the traditions and skills behind the Hawaiian lei. We will cover how to make three unique ribbon lei. These can vary based on personality or colors and are a great alternative to a traditional flower lei. This event is open to all. No registration required."

- Brad Haugaard

What's With Bags of Meat in Foothills?


Residents on and around Norumbega in north Monrovia have more than once noticed bags of meat left on the street and are wondering if the meat might be poisoned. Resident Sandi Warren, posting in NextDoor, said that yesterday she and a friend found the bag of meat shown here in the 600 block of Norumbega. She writes: "We were able to flag down a policeman who called another policeman and then they took the bag. They said it would go to the Fish and Game Department for analysis."

- Brad Haugaaard

Staar Surgical Reports Q1 Profit of $1.4 Million

Monrovia's Staar Surgical, a maker of implantable lenses for the eye, has reported a first-quarter profit of $1.4 million on revenue of $32.6 million. link

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Historical Society Publishes Photo Book of Early Monrovia


One of the photos in Early Monrovia. This is the Scotia Hotel, which was moved from near Santa Fe depot north to 801 S Myrtle and then burned down, prompting the purchase of the first fire engine.

The Monrovia Historical Society has just published Early Monrovia, a 100-page glossy paperback book by Sandy Burud and Steve Baker, that shows photographs from the Legacy Project collection that captures the story of Monrovia’s beginnings in pictures — what the town looked like, who the real "movers and shakers" were and what people thought was most important (no saloons and great schools).

I got a copy and am enjoying it. I like how each of the 12 sections is prefaced by information about the pictures that follow, so you're never in the dark about how the pictures fit into the context of Monrovia's history.  Topics include everything from Early Settlement to Schools & Churches; Oranges, Oranges, Oranges; Parades!; Transportation; City Government; Library Park; and more.

Early Monrovia costs $30 and can be purchased at City Hall, at the Library’s Friends bookstore, at Dollmakers' Kattywompus (412 S. Myrtle) or from the Monrovia Historical Society (website: monroviahistoricalsociety.org, phone: 675-8323, or email: monroviahistoricalsociety1896@gmail.com).

It will also be available to purchase at the Anderson House at 215 E. Lime on the day of the MOHPG Historic Homes Tour, May 5, or during the Monrovia Days Festival May 18-19 at the Information Booth.

Frank Scott, Chief of Police, 1927

Thanks to Sandy Burud, Vice President, Monrovia Historical Society and Co-Director, Monrovia Legacy Project, for the information.

- Brad Haugaard

Neighborhood Treasure to Honor Japanese Monrovians


Monrovia Area Partnership will unveil its fourth Neighborhood Treasure honoring the Japanese Monrovians. Many Japanese families came to Monrovia to build the strawberry farms and grocery stores. The unveiling will be on June 8, at 11 a.m., at 300 W. Cypress.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Area Partnership Celebrates 13th Birthday


Monrovia Area Partnership will celebrate its 13th year with a block party on Saturday, June 22, 11 a.m. at Julian Fisher Park. Family friendly games, free food and ice cream.

- Brad Haugaard

Lots More Parking Coming to Old Town; Peterbilt Boulders Slow Pipeline Installation; Be On a City Board; Etc.


In his latest report (https://is.gd/JGORRp) City Manager Oliver Chi reports:

~  The city has obtained a lease on two parking lots on Lime just east of Ivy that will add about 150 new parking spaces near Old Town that should be available for public use by the end of May. The smaller of the two lots is located between First Indonesian Baptist Church and the George Anderson House Museum.  The larger of the two lots is just east of the Anderson House. City crews will make minor upgrades to both parking lots (weed control, lights, new painting, etc.) before they are opened.

~ Boulders as large as Peterbilt trucks are slowing the installation of a 16" pipeline along Canyon Boulevard. The project, to improve water flows, pressure, and reliability, was supposed to be done by April 26. New estimate is the week of May 20.

~  Want to be involved in city government? Consider volunteering for a city commission, committee or board. Here are the openings: Community Services Commission (3 vacancies); Historic Preservation Commission (2 vacancies); Library Board (3 vacancies); Monrovia Old Town Advisory Board (2 vacancies); Planning Commission (2 Vacancies). Apply by May 1. Contact the City Clerk's office at 932-5599 for questions. Details: https://is.gd/eS7XGs

~  Chi congratulated the city teams that shut down what he said was an operation at 212 N. Myrtle that was "manufacturing illegal drugs." He said city workers "spent hundreds of hours last week responding to this incident, and we are so pleased with the way that everything turned out.  Many thanks to the vigilant neighbors in the area who alerted the City to the situation, and kudos to our Community Development, Police Department, and Fire Department teams for their excellent work in addressing this situation!"

~ The city is conducting its annual sewer maintenance with a private contractor (Houston Harris) to clean nearly 47 miles of sewer lines, hydro jetting to clear blockages, inspecting the lines with closed circuit video and removing roots and critters.

~ The final sections of K-Rail on Highland Place, Mauna Loa Drive, and Hillcrest, will be removed beginning May 28, and should be gone within 3 days. The K-rail was installed after the 2013 Madison Fire.

~  Ms. Betty Fisher Thomas, Older American of the Year for Monrovia, was honored for her community involvement as a member of several outreach ministries at Second Baptist Church, her 10-year leadership in Monrovia Area Partnership, her service as a nurse and teacher of nursing, her service as a board member of Monrovia Duarte Black Alumni Association, and her work at Monrovia elementary schools for Black History Month.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police Blood Drive


- Brad Haugaard 

Monrovia's Xencor Gets Permission to Resume Study of Cancer Treatment

Monrovia's Xencor, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing antibodies for the treatment of cancer, autoimmune, asthma and allergic diseases, announced the Food and Drug Administration has lifted the partial clinical hold that was placed on the Phase 1 study of XmAb14045, an antibody for leukemia patients. The company is using an amended protocol which seeks to enhance the safety of patients in the study. https://is.gd/yQrc8p

- Brad Haugaard

Loni's Gift to Burt Goes to Auction in Monrovia

Burt Reynolds and Loni Anderson. Photo by Alan Light.

A Swiss pocket watch with a gold fob bearing an inscription from Loni Anderson to Burt Reynolds will be offered at auction in Monrovia at John Moran Auctioneers​' Fine Jewelry and Timepieces Auction on May 21. The watch was a gift by Anderson to the late Burt Reynolds on the occasion of the couple’s first anniversary in 1982. https://is.gd/YC6BRK

- Brad Haugaard

Metal Is Recyclable; Plastic is Recyclable; But Metal-Plastic is Not


Athens Services, which provides trash collection for Monrovia, explains why chip bags (metallic on the inside, plastic on the outside) are not recyclable. It's because it's too expensive to separate the plastic from the metal. So I guess into the standard trash they need to go.

- Brad Haugaard