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Parking, RVs, Homelessness: Venice Votes For Restrictions

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The majority of Venice residents want stricter overnight parking rules--and ultimately more control over those parked RVs--on their streets. On two different initiatives, residents voted yesterday to allow the establishment of Overnight Parking Districts, a move that makes it possible for neighborhoods to set overnight parking rules. As a friend and Venice resident points out: "The anti-RV campers camp won, and the Defenders of the Homeless in Mobile homes lost." And yes, there's a real estate market crash tie-in here. Pictured above is the now-delayed Pioneer Bakery condo project at Rose and Fifth. The developer announced back in August that there were financial difficulties with the project, and the empty lot is one of a popular magnet for RVs--basically, the blocks around the lot have turned into an RV park, so it'll be interesting to see if neighbors around these blocks put restrictions on this area.

Meanwhile, the vote was a close one: Initiative A, which would have overturned the Venice Neighborhood Council Board approval of overnight parking districts in Venice failed by a vote of 634 (in favor) to 868 (against). Meanwhile, Initiative B, which affirms that Venice residents can establish OPDs for their blocks passed by a vote of 891-608.

For Release: IMMEDIATE Contact: Marc Saltzberg
(310) 606-2015

Venice Neighborhood Council Initiative Election Results
Measure A, Rescinding VNC Board Approval of Overnight Parking Districts in Venice Fails Measure B, Affirming that Venice Residents Have the Right to Establish OPDs Passes

Venice, Calif., February 22, 2009—1512 Venice Stakeholders voted in an election held Saturday, February 21, 2009 to determine their support for two initiatives placed on the ballot by different stakeholder groups.

Initiative A, rescinding VNC Board approval of overnight parking districts in Venice failed. The vote was 634 in favor, 868 against with 9 abstentions.

Initiative B, affirming that Venice residents have the right to establish OPDs for their blocks passed in a vote of 891 in favor with 608 against and 13 abstentions.

Fifteen hundred eleven people voted in the election with some standing in line for an hour before casting their vote (in addition to the 1512 ballots counted, 13 provisional ballots were cast). The vote represented an historic turnout in VNC elections, surpassing the 2005 turnout of 1189 voters. Mike Newhouse, President of the Venice Neighborhood Council said "The number of people voting in this election is a tribute to the grass roots groups that got out the vote for their respective initiatives and to the interest Venice residents had in the outcome. Administering the initiative process was a first for our Neighborhood Council and I thank our Election Committee for their service and conduct."

The text of the two initiatives follows:

INITIATIVE A: Rescind OPDs in Venice
To Fairly Represent Venice, the Venice Neighborhood Council (VNC) Must Rescind any VNC Board Approval of Overnight Parking Districts in Venice and Transmit a Letter Stating Such to the Los Angeles City Council Office, the Bureau of Engineering, the Department of Transportation, and the California Coastal Commission.
INITIATIVE: B Affirm Venice Stakeholders Right To Form Overnight Parking Districts (OPDs)
Venice Stakeholders re-affirm that Venice residents have the same democratic right as other L.A. residents to establish, by 2/3rds petition signatures, OPDs for their blocks to preserve parking for residents and for night-time security, and call upon the VNC to communicate affirmation of this right to pertinent governmental bodies.

· Venice Voters Favor Overnight Parking Restriction [MSNBC]