To the Measure S Naysayers: I Know What You’re AGAINST … What are You FOR?

APLERN AT LARGE--In my last CityWatch article, I emphasized what the Measure S supporters are FOR.  A few key questions are in order for those opposing Measure S, particularly because those of us supporting the measure are virtually all volunteers, and virtually all opposing Measure S are getting PAID. 

PAID as in "Primarily Associated In Development", and who are getting either direct or indirect support from developers, either through their salary/job or the promise of new jobs if we continue our out-of-control development policies--er, I mean practices, because we HAVE no coherent policies with respect to Planning, despite it being illegal to not follow our City Charter and Bylaws. 

A few questions are in order for those who oppose Measure S--particularly for the benefit of Angelenos on the fence on this measure, and particularly aimed at those who recognize why the measure is being pushed but fear any "unintended consequences": 

1) How will you address the concerns and needs of those who have--either enthusiastically or with the resigned determination that we now have no choice to save our City--supported Measure S? 

2) Why is the recent "reform in financing City Hall campaigns" and "getting developer money out of politics" something we didn't see before Measure S, and are these talking points from City Hall to be believed at this time, and under these circumstances? 

3) Have more affordable housing and sustainable development been occurring under Mayor Garcetti and the City Council, or have these problems been sharply worsening under their "leadership"? 

4) If Measure S limits OVER-development, but allows legal development that could virtually double our supply of homes and apartments within five years, HOW does Measure S prevent sustainable development and affordable housing? 

5) Do our current development practices at Planning really favoring the average Angeleno, or just the wealthy and connected...and why are so many homeowners groups and affordable housing/homeless advocacy groups supporting Measure S? 

6) Are their enough parks and open space being created by our current development practices in Los Angeles? 

7) What's wrong with City staff, and not "hired guns" paid and influenced by contractors, performing legally-mandated EIR's to ensure their accuracy and impartiality? 

8) If we're to allow decreased parking for developers on certain products, how are we to protect these developments' neighbors from being impacted by cars parked on/next to their private properties, and how we will demand and ensure alternative legal and financial mitigations to secure the transportation/mobility/infrastructure of our City? 

9) How much of these projects are being approved for the financial betterment and welfare of overdevelopers, and why are City residents and neighborhood councils routinely ignored if not demeaned by our City Planning Department? 

10) How DO we prevent spot-zoning, and how DO we expedite the updating of our City Charter and Community Plans? 

Measure S remains supported by a growing number of volunteers and grassroots/non-profit groups who want an accountable and sustainable and environmentally-friendly City, and remains opposed by those getting PAID (Primarily Associated In Development). 

And those who oppose Measure S?  What are they FOR?  Do they want laws to even exist in City Planning and associated with our Community Plans? 

Beyond the platitudes by those opposing Measure S, what are THEIR ideas to ensure the rule of environmental law and rights of individuals living in the City of Los Angeles?   

And is continuing down our current path something we're OK with? 

Vote YES on Measure S on March 7th--a happier, healthier, and more representative City is closer than you think!


(Kenneth S. Alpern, M.D. is a dermatologist who has served in clinics in Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties.  He is also a Westside Village Zone Director and Board member of the Mar Vista Community Council (MVCC), previously co-chaired its Planning and Outreach Committees, and currently is Co-Chair of its MVCC Transportation/Infrastructure Committee. He is co-chair of the CD11Transportation Advisory Committee and chairs the nonprofit Transit Coalition, and can be reached at He also co-chairs the grassroots Friends of the Green Line at The views expressed in this article are solely those of Dr. Alpern.)