became and what it was, but I’m always more

apt to preserve some of the historic nature of
our buildings,” Board member Noah Margo
said. “I think what we’re doing at Horace
Mann is a representation of having new and
old and making it work.”
The Horace Mann project involves preserv-
ing the auditorium and Building A, the main
campus building that houses the offices, and
building a new two-story building on the
corner of Charleville and Robertson that will
contain the middle school, library and a new
multipurpose room among other things.
Board members shared varying opinions
about Hawthorne’s auditorium, which histori-
cal architect G. Taylor Louden said is impor-
tant to maintain Building Group A’s archi-
tectural integrity. Through DLR Group, the
Board of Education contracted Louden to con-
duct a historical assessment of Hawthorne’s
In his report, Louden determined Building
A, including the auditorium, was significant
and should be retained in its entirety. DLR
Group designed Option 7 based on Louden’s
“I think the outside of the auditorium is
beautiful and it’s unique, but I don’t think the
inside of that auditorium is conducive to any-
thing productive,” Margo said. “I would love
to keep the façade of the auditorium. I think
that grand entrance going through the court-
yard, looking at the arches, is unique.”
Margo said since the auditorium was origi-
nally designed for a grammar school and not a
K-8 school, he believes the inside is not ideal
for both educational and community uses.
Board member Lisa Korbatov expressed con-
cern that preserving the auditorium would not
result in a larger stage and performance space
for students.
Board member Lewis Hall said he had
attended performances in the auditorium and
said the space “worked.”
Prior to the board giving its direction, DLR
Group principal Brett Hobza said the audito-
rium could be re-purposed as the library, but
a location for a new auditorium would have to
be determined.
“I’m profoundly grateful to the school
board for recognizing the value of preserving
Building A, while at the same time consider-
ing the costs of what Option 6 and Option
7 was going to do to the overall Measure
E budget,” said Kimberly Vinokur Reiss,
founder of the “Save Historic Hawthorne
School” Facebook page. “I’m looking forward
to hearing viable alternatives that are in the
best interest of all parties involved with the
outcome of Hawthorne.”
It is unclear if plans for Hawthorne will
move forward any time soon, since the board
learned last week from its financial advisors
Keygent Advisors that the district will likely
run out of Measure E funds before completing
construction at Beverly High if it moves for-
ward with Horace Mann and Hawthorne first.
The Board of Education will likely discuss
its plans for Measure E at a study session later
this month on a date to be determined. For
more about Measure E financing, please see
next brief.
Goldberg did not return a phone call from
the Weekly.
Measure E funds unlikely to
cover all five BHUSD schools
For months, the Board of Education has
been studying concepts that would rebuild
significant portions of the campuses at Horace
Mann, Hawthorne and Beverly High. With
the $334-million Measure E bond fund, the
board also intended to fix up El Rodeo and
address remaining issues at Beverly Vista.
Last week, the board learned from its
financial advisors Keygent Advisors it will
likely run out of money before completing
construction at the high school if plans for
August 2 - August 8, 2012 • Page 7
briefs cont. on page 9
briefs cont. from page 5
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Horace Mann and Hawthorne move forward
first, leaving no money for Beverly Vista and
El Rodeo.
The $62-million Horace Mann project is
already proceeding to the construction docu-
ment phase, following direction from the
board at last week’s study session. Hawthorne
was most recently estimated at between $85
million and $92 million. The Beverly High
concept presented last week was estimated at
a total of approximately $180 million, includ-
ing contingency.
Chief Facilities Official Nelson Cayabyab
said Measure E funds would likely run out
in 2017 or 2018 with only 60 percent of the
high-school project completed, if Hawthorne
is prioritized.
Keygent Advisors presented a second bond
schedule option that would focus on Horace
Mann and Beverly High, but not Hawthorne,
and would leave the district with approxi-
mately $28 million to address issues at the
remaining campuses.
Vice President Jake Manaster said in
a phone interview Tuesday the Board of
Education would next discuss its Measure E
plans at a study session later this month.
“I’d say the first thing we need to define
is what exactly are we spending and when
and to get what, and I don’t think that that’s
been fully formulated yet,” Manaster said. “I
hope we’ve seen enough as a board to give
direction as to, ‘here are the limitations within
which we would like everybody to operate
going forward.’”
Since the district is already moving for-
ward with plans for Horace Mann—which
Manaster pointed out combine new construc-
tion with preservation, underground parking,
a new field and are “not coming in at some
outrageous amount of money”—Manaster
said the board needs to assess how to spend
the remaining funds wisely.
“I’m looking forward to tuning and truing
this up to what this community needs, wants
and can afford,” Manaster said.
Both scenarios presented by Keygent
Advisors assumed the board would approve a
tax increase of $60 per $100,000 of assessed
value, the maximum allowed under Prop. 39
without holding a referendum, but Keygent
Managing Director Tony Hsieh said the dis-
trict has missed the deadline to raise the tax
rate for fiscal year 2012-2013.
The board has discussed raising the tax rate
without a referendum to accelerate the bond
schedule, which is lagging behind projections
made in 2008.
Currently, the BHUSD does not have the
money to fund the Hawthorne or Beverly
High projects. So far, $72 million has been
issued, but the next $60-million installment of
bonds will not be available until 2014. If the
board does not raise the tax rate, it will likely
not be able to access the total $334 million
until 2030.
Hsieh said if the board raises the tax rate,
the initial rate will be $114 per $100,000 of
assessed value, but by 2034 the rate will level
out to approximately $60 per $100,000 of
assessed value until the bonds are paid off.
“All that extra capacity you have by raising
the tax rate is right now,” Hsieh said. “What
you did forgo is one year of raising the tax.
I think as the board moves forward on to its
decision-making process it would be best if
we could try to hit the 2013-2014 tax rolls.”
Hsieh said BHUSD would not have to let
LACOE know its final decision until spring
When Measure E passed in 2008, the Board
of Education at the time promised the exist-
ing tax rate—$49.71 per $100,000 assessed
value—would not increase.
In Issue #654, the Weekly reported under
Prop. 39, BHUSD can legally levy a tax rate
of up to $60 per $100,000 assessed value
for Measure E, to add on top of the $54-per-
$100,000 rate for Measures K and S that will
be paid off in 2030. Measure E would be paid
off in 2055.
When Goldberg asked if the board had
financing options other than raising the tax
rate, Hsieh said bond anticipation notes
(BANs), or bridge financing, would allow
the BHUSD to access bond funds before
scheduled bond sales. Hsieh said interest rates
are currently low for BANs, but the district
would risk interest rates increasing during the
course of repayment.
Goldberg did not return a phone call from
the Weekly.
Tour-bus headset requirement
hits legal snag
For years the City has sought a solution to
reduce the impact of noise from loudspeak-
ers on open-air tour buses traveling through
Beverly Hills’ residential neighborhoods to
catch a glimpse of celebrities’ homes.
Last November, the Traffic & Parking
Commission voted to recommend that the
City Council adopt an ordinance requiring
open-air tour buses to install headsets, but
Commission Chair Julie Steinberg said the
commission was told at its July 12 meeting
the City cannot pursue the ordinance because
of existing law in the California vehicle
“We had the city attorney review [the
proposed ordinance] and they determined
that there’s a California Vehicle Code [sec-
tion] that it’s a violation if you have ampli-
fied sound [that can be heard at distances]
greater than 50 feet,” Deputy Director of
Transportation Aaron Kunz said. “The city
attorney determined it was a preemption of
a state law.”
City attorney Larry Wiener said he could
not speak publicly about the advice his office
gave to the transportation department regard-
ing the proposed ordinance, because of attor-
ney-client privilege.
According to Starline Tours director Philip
Ferentinos, the company has been voluntarily
using headsets in its open-air tour vehicles
that cruise through residential areas for more
than two years.
In a phone interview July 26, Ferentinos
said Starline Tours will not change its prac-
tices with respect to headsets based on the
news Beverly Hills won’t be going forward
with the ordinance.
“We feel that it’s responsible tourism to
be doing this and we’re really saddened the
other companies don’t feel the same way,”
Ferentinos said. “We understand that since
the industry has gone from closed buses to
topless buses, we needed to make an adjust-
ment in best practices, which we did in con-
junction with Beverly Hills, understanding
their concerns and the concerns of the City
of L.A., too.”
Next year, Ferentinos said the company
plans to install headsets in its larger double-
decker tour buses that only drive through
non-residential areas.
“We don’t want buses blasting through
like portable juke boxes, which is really what
they can become,” Ferentinos said. “We don’t
want that to be the case, even in industrial
When asked about the cost to equip its
vehicles with headsets, Ferentinos said the
company does not share that information pub-
licly, but he said the cost is “significant.”
“It is the responsible thing to do,” Ferentinos
said. “We hope all companies eventually
understand that’s the way it should be done.”
Kunz said the City would continue to
reach out to tour-bus companies to encourage
voluntary headset compliance and to educate
them about the amplified sound limitation in
the vehicle code.
“We want to keep going to try to mini-
mize the impacts of these tour buses and
we’re working with staff, with the visitors
bureau and also with the Traffic & Parking
Commission,” Kunz said. “We’re going to
continue doing everything we possibly can to
reduce impacts.”
BHUSD support staff to get
raises only if tax initiative
In a year when
the Board of
Education approved
the purchase of a
$1.5-million resi-
dence, two district-
office administra-
tors got significant
raises, and teachers
got a 3-percent sal-
ary increase, the
board approved a
modest salary increase for the district’s non-
certificated staff, but only in the event that
Governor Jerry Brown’s tax initiative passes
in November.
In June, the Board of Education approved
an agreement with the district’s office, tech-
nical and business services (OTBS) staff
authorizing a 3-percent raise if the tax ini-
tiative succeeds. The district’s instructional
assistants (IA) were granted raises between
$0.50 and $1.50 an hour, also contingent on
the tax increase.
The OTBS and IA tentative agreements
were approved the same night the board
approved the teachers union’s first raise in
three years.
OTBS staff has also gone three years with-
out a pay raise. In the past, BHEA OTBS Unit
President Margo Bender said the OTBS, IA
and certificated units all received raises at the
same time.
“The district was not willing to give OTBS
a salary increase as they did the teachers, so
August 2 - August 8, 2012 • Page 9
briefs cont. from page 7
briefs cont. on page 10
just going to call it what it is—is anti-
Semitism. [A previous IOC head and his
vice president were known to be] Nazi
sympathizer[s]. New information came
out [recently] that a Nazi group helped
the PLO get weapons, fake ID’s and get
into the Olympic Village. Not only that,
but three [weeks] before the Olympics,
they had somebody in [Lebanon] who was
an informant, warned him about it, that
it was coming because Black September
was very angry that the IOC did not allow
the Palestinians to join in the festivities of
the Olympics. They decided, “Well, let’s
disrupt the Olympics and pretty much
give them the middle finger and let’s kill
some Israelis while we’re at it.” There’s a
lot of Nazi connection and I just got new
information that I’m not going to share
quite yet, because it’s probably bigger
than what I found out so far. So the IOC
has a lot to hide. Their hands are blood-
ied. They have used their PR machine to
make everybody believe that this is just an
Israeli-Palestinian issue and it’s not.
Tell us about last Friday’s press
conference with Israeli Consul General
David Siegel.
They held a memorial [for the Munich
11] on Friday at the Coliseum downtown
and we had the Simon Wiesenthal Center
come down, Rabbi Abraham Cooper and
Rabbi Marvin Hier. We had a bunch of
Los Angeles City Council[members] come
down and they all showed their respect.
They all made speeches. It was very nice
and very touching.
What do you think is the enduring
legacy of this tragedy?
Well, I think that hate is bigger than
everybody thought in the world. Everybody
thought that this hatred toward Jews was
over after World War II was over and it’s
not. It’s actually more prevalent now than
it has been in years, and it shows with the
IOC and who’s behind the IOC. I don’t
think a lot of people knew the Nazi con-
nection of the IOC and the connection
between the IOC and the Palestinian ter-
rorists. I think that the legacy will actually
change in the near future when people find
out more about the people behind the IOC.
It’s about corruption as well. They don’t
want to hurt their fiscal bottom line, in any
way, shape or form.
Any closing thoughts?
This year the amount of support we’ve
gotten worldwide has been more than
ever. The fact that countries like the
U.S., England, Italy, Spain, Germany,
Australia—just to name a few—have stood
up and said that they want a moment of
silence and it’s about time and have been
disgusted with the IOC’s decision not to
do it, has been heart-warming and I believe
that that’s just the beginning, and after 40
years, it’s really nice to see people starting
to get disgusted with the IOC’s decision
not to do it.
--Interview by Melanie Anderson
2008 Measure E campaign mailing
Margo Bender

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