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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Okulick Upset with Venice BID; Wants Monies Returned

Business Improvement District (BID) members, those assessed will meet 10 am, 9 February at the Mishkon Tephilo Social Hall, 206 Main Street, Santa Monica.

John Okulick, outspoken opponent of the assessment, asks that all those who are disgruntled with the assessment sign the letter that Okulick has prepared below and return it to him at okulick@gmail.com. He will then present signed letters to the board.

LA Times had article 4 February on the BID.

February 4, 2018
Venice Beach Business Improvement District Board 8 Horizon
Venice, CA 90291

Venice Beach Property Owners Association,

I am writing this letter requesting immediate action be taken by the board. A number of property owners are upset with the makeup of the BID boundaries, inclusions of residential properties, the lack of communication with the board manager, Tara Devine, makeup of the board members, and the misinformation and action not taken by the board to date. The reasons for this request are as follows:

1.  We are asking for the return of all moneys paid to date by property owners that have received no services. In accordance with State Proposition 218 13D, (4) No fee or charge may be imposed for a service unless that service is actually used by, or immediately available to, the owner of the property in question. “ Fees or charges based on potential or future use of a service are not permitted .”

2.  We are asking for the removal of Tara Devine from the Property Owners Association effective immediately. Ms. Devine who drew the district boundaries for Councilman Bonin with a total disregard for property owners of light manufacturing, residential and non business properties has stated it was in her opinion to use zoning not use as a criteria for establishing the district including 30% of State and City properties requiring only one signature which enabled proponents to reach a 50% majority during the voting process. She refuses to answer questions about the exclusion of the Abbot Kenny business area which benefits from the BID at our expense. Their taxes do not go up as ours do. Her administrative fees are excessive as she has shown incompetence in forming and providing BID services. The City Clerk, Holly Wolcott, who oversees the BID has also shown no interest in answering our questions with regard to actions taken by Ms. Devine. She has not followed her own management plan, not providing notices for anything relevant from the past year. No quarterly reports, meetings in March of last year not announced to the property owners in violation of the Brown Act. These activities, which question the legality of the BID, and other violations suggest her inability to work with the community, with opponents of the BID, and to refuse all interaction with those she chooses, as though she was an elected official beyond recrimination. These are grounds for dismissal. We urge the board to take this action.

3.  We demand the Property owners association represent a cross section of the community not just a handful of large property owners who have political ties with Bonin. This is a biased board comprised of property owners who are being litigated by the LA City attorney’s office, Bonin campaign contributors, and supporters of the chamber of commerce whose goals are to increase business activities, increase the cost of living, push out the fixed income, elderly, poor and minority residents, and reduce affordable housing.

4. If the above can not be achieved as a fair and equitable resolve, we demand that the Venice Beach Business Improvement District be eliminated due to its unfairness, its secrecy, and its unwarranted use of assessments to enrich a few who would trade greed for community balance and political favor.

John Okulick
For homeowners who are being unfairly taxed.

Comments (3)

  1. Anonymous

    Resident posted: “So…just get out of the way and let the BID do their job and stop interfering with progress.”Yes, except their job seems to be to collect money have meetings and do little else.

    • Resident

      The reason why nothing was getting done was because Okulick sued them. I agree that they could be a lot more transparent, but the people against the BID have done everything to try to undermine it, Okulick is one of the biggest offender.

  2. Resident

    It’s hilarious that Okulick lists himself as “for homeowners who are being unfairly taxed” when he doesn’t even live in Venice and that the lawsuit he brought forth created a six month delay in the board being able to do anything. Okulick is the main reason why nothing had been done. So…just get out of the way and let the BID do their job and stop interfering with progress.

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