Saturday, January 31, 2009

More in the news about the criminal charges...

Story from Curbed LA

Charges Filed Over Tree-Killing Tropicana Supergraphic
Friday, January 30, 2009, by Dakota

2009.01.superg.jpgEven after city officials held a press conference Wednesday in front of an illegal supergraphic at 10801 National Boulevard, the building's owner didn't adhere to last night's midnight deadline to remove the sign, prompting City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo to file multiple criminal charges against sign company World Wide Rush, building owner National Investment Company, and eight individuals. As of 4pm today, the sign was still up, according to a spokesperson for Delgadillo. And how about this: According to a press release from Delgadillo's office, the city is "also investigating the illegal chopping down of several trees located on state property in front of the illegal Tropicana Juice sign." Were the trees removed to allow workers to put up the sign, which is located right off the 10 freeway? Worse than that. "We think the trees were removed to clear a line of sight to the sign," the spokesperson tells us. Reading that Thursday LA Times story on the graphic, it seemed like there was a chance the sign might come down. "A lawyer for the company said the supergraphic would be come down Friday, but only because it was scheduled to come down that day. Attorney Joe Agapay said National Investment had not received an order to remove a second supergraphic on the building."

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UPDATE AS OF SATURDAY, JANUARY 31, 2009

As of today Sat. 1/31/09, no action has bee taken to bring down the sign. The defiance by the owner, FRANK RAHBAN in the face of criminal charges is unreal.

We can only speculate for Frankie's bandits that the windfall of revenue from this criminal act will exceed any repercussions that the law can hand down.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Criminal Charges hits the news and airwaves

From Curbed LA...

LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, the city’s chief prosecutor, today announced his office has filed multiple criminal charges against the owner of a supergraphic sign company and the owner of the West Los Angeles building to which the sign has been affixed for illegally erecting the six-story advertisement
following passage of a city moratorium on such signs and for failing to comply with orders for removal from investigating city agencies.

“The owners of the sign behind us, and the building to which it is affixed, have been directed by the Fire Department and Department of Building and Safety to take down this sign immediately or face criminal prosecution,” said City Attorney Delgadillo. ”They have failed to comply; and have left us with no choice but to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law. That is exactly what we are doing today.”

Sign company World Wide Rush, building owner National Investment Company, as well as eight individuals named as registrants doing business under the company name or listed on the deed as partial owners of the building were today charged with 23 criminal counts including installing a sign support structure without a Building Permit; 16 counts of maintaining a 50' by 140' sign without a Building Permit; obstructing
openings in the exterior wall of an occupied high-rise building in such a manner as to cause a hazardous condition in the event of a fire or other emergency; placing an advertising display within 660 feet of the edge of the right-of-way of a freeway without a written permit from the Director of the California Department of Transportation; placing an advertising display adjacent to the landscaped section of a freeway; and maintaining a public nuisance in violation of the California Outdoor
Advertising Act.

If convicted, the company and named defendants could face up to six months in jail and up to $1,000 in fines and penalties for each charge. Arraignment is scheduled for February 26 in Los Angeles Superior Court.


"The City's penalties against super graphics have been too weak to be effective, so it's time to throw the book at them and send a strong message to deter others," said Councilmember Jack Weiss who represents the area where the supergraphic is located.

The case against Worldwide Rush and National Investment began on
December 27, 2008 when investigators from the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety observed bolts and cables being installed as part of alarge vinyl advertisement sign along the side of a six-story building located at 10801 National Boulevard in West Los Angeles. Orders to Comply were issued by the Department of Building and Safety and the Los Angeles Fire Department requesting compliance by January 29.

Results of the investigation and notice of failure to comply were forwarded to the City Attorney’s Criminal and Special Litigation branch for joint filing by the Branch Operations Division and Safe Neighborhoods Division.

The California Department of Transportation also provided critical assistance to the City Attorney’s Office in the prosecution of violations of the Outdoor Advertising Act. The California Department of Transportation plants and maintains the landscapes that adjoin our Los Angeles freeways and classifies certain freeways as landscaped freeways.

In this case, they are also investigating the illegal chopping down of several trees located on state property in front of the illegal Tropicana Juice sign. Anyone who witnessed this atrocity should contact the California Department of Transportation or this Office.

BREAKING NEWS: CRIMINAL CHARGES FILED

FRESH OFF THE PRESS:

We were just notified by Mary Clare Molidor, Sr. Asst. District Attorney, that a 23 count criminal complaint has been filed by the Criminal Branch of the City Attorney's Office today against Frank Rahban, owner of 10801 National Blvd, L.A. CA 90064 and others for defying an order by the Fire Department to remove this hazardous sign.

BACKGROUND

Owner, Frank Rahban put on this Supergraphic late Tuesday evening on Jan. 13, 2009 over th entire side of his 6 story office building.

He was cited by the fire department for 2 fire code violations on Jan. 22, 2009 (see fire code violations handed down) and was given until Thursday, Jan. 29, 2009 to have it removed. Today is Friday, Jan. 30th and it still remains affixed to the building.

Even with the knowledge of this Supergraphic being a threat for all of the building occupants, the owner has elected to keep it up.

Another Yiddish word comes to mind to describe folks that work above the law:
GONIFF: Noun - A thief or dishonest person or scoundrel (often used as a general term of abuse) ganef, ganof, gonif. Offender, wrongdoer - a person who transgresses moral or civil law.

Council member Jack Weiss and the LAFD held a press conference right outside the 10801 property just last Wed., Jan. 28, 2009 to attack the issue of these illegal signs and specifically mentioned that anyone not cooperating will have charges filed against them.

We want to thank the city attorney's office for keeping their word and taking action, thank the LAFD for all of their support, thank the media for a great job covering this issue and this particular story, and most of all thank the tenants of 10801.

Campaign Contributions and Conflicts of Interest

We bring your attention to an article that just came up regarding Council member Jack Weiss. See Jack Weiss Took Dough From Outdoor Ad Pushers. This was posted today in the LA Weekly blog by Christine Pelisek and it raises questions as to how much impact these facts way on their public decisions.

This is a message and thoughts from Dr. Allan. I've never been active politically and I probably represent a large percentage of residents in Los Angeles. I didn't even know what district I was in or who my Representative was until now. I can't say that I am proud of this, but this is the case at this point in time. I have a busy career and never paid much attention to politics. My main concern on this issue was to stand up for myself and this injustice placed upon me and the tenants of 10801.

In this light, maybe my opinion might be more valuable to Council member Weiss than someone with the inside scoop.

First I'm gonna put myself in Jack Weiss's shoes regarding donations. I would accept a donation from anyone to help drive the campaign. The exception would be that I would not accept any money from anyone that is involved with illegal activities. So, the statement comes up in this article that Jack received money from Barry Rush of World Wide Rush. Since his sign is on our building, I feel that this guy is a bandit and would refuse his contribution. Did Jack have knowledge of Barry Rush and his illegal activities?

This is part reason most folks don't get involved politically. There's such battles that go on to get elected and it's unrealistic that you get in as a saint. There are so many issues in society that upset me and I would not feel comfortable dealing with all these battles. Hats off to the politicians that strive for justice and fight for our causes.

One thing is for certain -- Jack Weiss and the Fire Department have come to my corner and reached out to help. Council member Weiss held a press conference right at the foot of my building. He has spoken out against the injustice and has made suggestions for righting this problem.

That's more than I can say for Barry Rush (signage derelict that rapes our landscape), Pepsico, Inc (A company that promotes poison to the public), and Frank Rahban (real estate lawful low life).

We welcome your comments.

Reminder: Dr. Allan to be on the John & Ken Show


Dr. Allan will be on the John and Ken Show tomorrow
Saturday 1/31/09

3 PM, KFI AM 640 Radio (15 minute interview)
to discuss and and inform John and Ken of our Supergraphics' problem at our 10801 building and others invading the Southern California Region.
Please Tune In!

JUST FOR FUN: Here's some billboards from Canada


Well, if you're gonna put the crap up there, you might as well make it interesting...











































































Thursday, January 29, 2009

01/29/09: The Day The Sign DID NOT Come Down

Today was the last day to remove the supergraphic from 10801. The fire department issued two fire code violations on 1/22/09 and gave them until today to remove it. Well maybe the take down operation's manager got lost, because it still remains up and standing tall.

So, it remains to be seen if they 1) Remove the sign at the end of the month and 2) Put another one up in it's place.

You would think after all this attention from fire code violations, front page story in the L.A. Times, Councilman Frank Weiss's Press conference (right next to our building), threatening lawsuits, other city-wide media campagins, and to this very blog --- it will deter their next scheduled illegal tarp... We shall see. Stay tuned.

Tropicana -- Is a division of PEPSICO, INC.

Now we have to add Pepsico, Inc. makers of Pepsi, Frito Lay, Gatorade, Quaker Oats to name a few to our list that needs to know that they have crossed the line.

The CEO of Pepsico, Inc is Indra Nooyi.

The public would like a statement from Pepsico, Inc.
Respond to the following questions:

Do you know that this particular sign is illegal?

Do you know that this sign is endangering the occupants of an entire 6 story building?

Do you have other supergraphics that drape over buildings with windows?

Do you ever check with fire and building & safety agencies before you put up signs like this?

Regarding this sign: Refer to the enclosed documents and the fire code violations.

More comments from the public

Comment #1, left at 01/19/09 04:35 PM.I guess it makes sense. It would be great for these buildings to lose tenants and big $$$ while chasing graphics and relatively minor money.

When they leased, they did it partially for the professional image. I hope they win. That sign is so over the top huge. I can't believe they thought that would be ok with the tenants.

guest

a bit overdramatic, but i see their point.

LOL at Madonna's crotch.

guest

do they cover the views from inside the building? thats another reason for a lawsuit or rent reduction.

I always wondered what it looked like from inside the building -- yuck -- I'm surprised that more tenants don't complain when their view is somewhat obstructed by this junk!

And I can't believe the number of NEW buildings the 1969 "art" has been plastered on!!! It's like they slapped it on every possible building to potentially be able to use the space for advertising later on.

The images confuse me.

Am I supposed to be limp or erect?

guest

i'm hating on the building slumlords putting up these supergraphics. i work at sunset gower studios and saw them plaster up the statue of liberty ads on their brand new building. what a bunch of crass folks who decided on milking more money into their greasy hands by pasting these up. they should be shot and fed to pigs.

guest

Perhaps the Israeli consulate can order a missile strike or three on Mike McNeilly's house.

In all seriousness, it's an outrageous move by SkyTag and the sad thing is that he'll make tens of millions from it over the next few years.

guest

Awesome.

but..but its so BLADERUNNER !!.....

Anyone who thinks that these things have a 'Blade Runner' look to them (and I know you were being facetious, Starch, old boy) fail to recall what the STREETSCAPE itself looked like. Dirty cluttered sodden. It was a CAUTIONARY tale. The bright lights were UP THERE, trying to get you to look away from the muck.

Sure, who among us wouldnt want a 97th floor apartment made of Ennis House blocks? But that's not going to be prodived by electronic billboards offering goods and services affordable only to the rich. Some of which were on blimps, do you forget? I don't hear the BB-bosters calling for increased blimp traffic.

PS to #8: your first line was awful, funny. the second -- awful, true.

guest

The ads look great. Hey you CA hippies, remember one thing, this is the USA! Ever heard of freedom of speech? What would this nation be without advertising... Old men would never know about Propecia, Hippies would never know about Frontline, Douche Bags would never know about Armani & D&G. Come on folks, as a great uncle of mine always said.....quitchurbitchin. And worry about other things like stocking food pantries, spending time with the elderly and picking up litter from the streets in your city.

guest

Comment #12 rocks

guest

@guest (#12):

This is litter. Expensive litter, but still trash...

Frontline is the flea & tick juice I put on my dog monthly. Does that make me a hippie? Who knew...

guest

those ads are so obnoxious. thank god that someone is suing them. in related news... has anyone seem the huge pepsi supergraphic in hollywood (visible from the 101) completely ripping off the obama campaign, 'YES YOU CAN'? barf!! a huge corporation like pepsi couldn't afford to get a more creative ad team?

Comment 4 - From inside it looks like the windows are tinted. These huge signs have holes poked through them all over.

I hate stupid lawsuits and this sounds like one.

guest

@DrivingSideways: I'm sure the statement was intentional - though appears you missed the humor. Genius.

Yea, I did miss the humor. I guess your high-minded, esoteric humor is too sophistimicated for me!

@guest (#12): If I find your grandma in the gutter again, I'll take her out to dinner. Then can I complain about advertising?

@guest (#12): dude, its not about the CONTENT of the sign, its about the SIZE!

Do I have the constitutional right to stand in the street and amplify my voice at 100db 24/7? No. Hell I can't even do that from my front lawn.

ALL BILLBOARDS SUCK

guest

These supergraphics are popping up everywhere because of the major cash they generate for the companies and for the property owners. The graphic on the building shown in the story will probably net $300k to $400k in one year (not millions to be sure), but it's pure profit. My company owns a building down the street and I am surprised they aren't taking the money. By putting up the graphic, the building owner in the story will make the same amount of money as renting out 2-3 floors of his/her building. Again, pure profit. Do I like them? Some of them are hideous. If I was a building owner in the current recession would I sign up for one (no pun intended), hell yes! It's capitalism at work people.

guest

Sorry all you negative nellies. I LOVE this! I think it is totally cool and proves, once again, that Los Angeles is one of the hippest cities on earth.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

We get public comments...

Dr. Allan is on the John and Ken Show KFI AM640

An interview was recorded today and Dr. David Allan will be discussing the injustice served at 10801 National Blvd. The John and Ken Show will air on KFI AM640 radio this Saturday 3PM, January 31, 2009.

See the left side bar to find the audio clip and listen in.

10801 Tenant Strategy

Dealing with this upset and injustice, you can see according to our survey, withholding the rent is the most popular choice. For now, we suggest to put in the rent with a protest and whatever you do, don't cave into this rebate program they would like to offer on a one-by-one basis.

There's no leverage with this approach. According to the last letter from Joe Agapay, the supergraphics' is coming down at the end of this month. Of course that's great news, but he also stated that future supergraphics' will be put up in it's place.

In lieu of the present fire code violations, if they have the audacity to put up another sign, it has been suggested to file a class-action lawsuit against the building. A building on Wilshire did just that, and quickly changes were made in the tenant's favor.

VIDEO:JACK WEISS PRESS CONFERENCE AT 10801

Here's a video of the entire press conference (approx. 10 minutes)

video
City Officials say the ad covering 10801 must come down today!

THIS SUMS UP THE PRESS CONFERENCE: As far as the fire hazard issue, Fry and other LAFD members said the signs could make access to the building by firefighters impossible. "Not only is this [Tropicana] sign illegal because it was put up after the city banned new signs, it is completely a danger to the lives of people working inside of it," said Weiss.

Legal proceedings against the Westwood Blvd building's owner, Frank Rahban, will start if the Tropicana sign doesn't come down by tomorrow, according to City Atty. Rocky Delgadillo.

The news conference was called by Councilman Jack Weiss, a candidate for city attorney who recommended higher fines for property owners caught erecting unpermitted supergraphics. The maximum fine is $2,500 a day.

"We should make it a very clear business decision for them that even one day of an illegal sign costs them money," he said.

David Zahniser from the L.A. Times covered the story -- See L.A. Fire Officials Order Removal of More Supergraphics.


===========================

Too bad -- The folks that really needed to hear this info were not present -- The Frank Rahban and the owners of 10801, Lois Forshee-Agapay (building manager) and Joe Agapay, Tropicana and Pepsico reps and Barry Rush of World Wide Rush Signage.

In a statement, Attorney Joe Agapay say that the occupants of our building are not at any greater risk since this tarp went up. Well Capt. Kurt Fasmer of the LAPD at the meeting has a different viewpoint and said that Joe just doesn't understand the fire codes.

Also this can be seen and distributed on YouTube.

Violations state sign must go by 01/29/09

As stated by the City of Los Angeles Department of Fire --
10801 must remove their sign by Thurs., Jan. 29, 2009. I have been in communication with the L.A. City Attorney's Office and we are all waiting to see what the owners will do.

This is how the violation reads...

Failure on your part to comply with this notice on or before 01/29/09 will subject you to penalties prescribed by ordinance. A Reinspecting of the premises will be made for full compliance, noncompliance with this order shall result in a noncompliance fee based upon a fire inspector's total hourly rate, two hour minimum charge, for each reinspection required. Current minimum charge is $300 per reinspection.

Readers from Curbed LA chime in

Curbed LA has posted a story on our blog (See Feeling Squeezed by Dakota) and they have collected some comments -- Here ya go:

Plus the fact that the new Tropicana packaging is atrocious in and of itself. It looks like some generic JUICE FLVR ORANGE you'd find at Wal*Mart -- that is, if I'd ever been inside one. But, but I've seen the commercials!

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Right on! I support boycotting business/buildings with the supergraphics. Hear that landlords??

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it seems like theres more of these ads everyday!
and i agree with #1 with tropicana's awful new look. it looks like diluted orange juice.

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Next time you're in Washington DC, notice there are no billboards.
Damn soothing on the eyes.

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Where are we going to go? A building covered by Madonna's crotch? Its not that easy to relocate a business and we'll still have a landlord.

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^^^ put it in your lease that the building will not be defiled by this kind of f**king bulshite.

Our Cause Featured in the L.A. Weekly

Christine Pelisek from the L.A. Weekly has featured us in her latest story in the L.A. Weekly.

Thank you Christine -- Thanks for helping our cause. We hope this can help others suffering from the same injustice and put a stop to this runaway problem.

Click here to read her story:
WEST LA DOCTOR'S WEBSITE TARGETS SUPER-GRAPHICS

January 27, 2009 12:34PM

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

10801 is in the news again

We are having some great support from the media!! Thank you for joining in on our cause.

Click here to see NEW BAN BILLBOARD BLIGHT ARTICLE ON 10801

TENANTS LASH OUT AGAINST OWNER

Now that we know 10801 has been cited for fire code violations, we have received emails from tenants stating their concerns and disgust. We would like to feature one in particular, because it is well written and drives the message loud and clear...

Letter - from an anonymous tenant

Upon reading the fire safety violation issued to the owners of the building at 10801 National Blvd. in West Los Angeles I am paying particular attention to LAMC SEC. 57.12.02:

Subsection A:

No person shall install or maintain any wire, barbed wire, razor ribbon, fence, cable, aerial, antenna, or other obstruction on any building roof, parapet wall, or openings in an exterior wall required for Fire Department access, in such a manner as to obstruct access or egress, or cause a hazardous condition in the event or fire or other emergency.


So to clarify, this signage is an "obstruction….. to the openings in an exterior wall required for Fire Department access, in such a manner as to obstruct access or egress, or cause a hazardous condition in the event of fire or other emergency."


Realizing that the attorneys representing the owners of this building and the attorneys that represent the sign company have a primary interest in their clients' monetary interests rather than the safety of the building occupants and visitors to the building, it is obvious that they will try to find some way to ignore the danger to the people. Clearly the signage there obstructs the access or egress to the openings in the exterior walls and is causing a hazardous condition in the event of fire or other emergency. "Openings in an exterior wall" would include windows covered with glass, whether or not those windows can be opened by the occupants from the inside, since there is nothing in the code to say otherwise

(SEE DIVISION 12 - OBSTRUCTIONS TO ROOFS AND ALL OPENINGS p.150).


I am sure everyone remembers the horrible tragedy that occurred at the Taj Hotel in Mumbai this last December. The fire department there rescued 750 people by BREAKING THE WINDOWS so that they might be able to escape the building. These 750 people are alive today because they were able to escape through the "openings in an exterior wall." God forbid that this type of signage would have been present to impede this dramatic rescue.

Obviously it would be difficult for fire department personnel to gain access in a timely manner due to the obstruction caused by such signage. If they were to cut through the material there is a strong likelihood that the material would start tearing away and possibly create a moving hazard to occupants that might need to be rescued as well as the fire department personnel directly.


Occupants of this building are at an increased danger from fire as well as other emergencies, including terrorist attacks.


I can only wonder what Homeland Security would think of this impediment to the safety of the occupants in this building.


This tenant wished to remain anonymous, but we want to thank them for contributing.

=================================


The tragedy that is described in this letter was real and fire fighters had to bust through these windows to rescue these people. These are the same type windows in our building. You can see a news story that describes this event by clicking FIRED UP WITH VIGOUR, FIREMEN DIDN'T EVEN HEED TO NSG WARNING.



FIRE CODE VIOLATIONS HANDED DOWN

Before we spoke of the fire code violations...
Now we have the documentation.


Page 1

From the
City of Los Angeles Department of Fire
Fire/Life Safety Violation

To:
Forshee-Agapay, Lois
DBA National Investment Company
10801 National Blvd.
L.A., CA 90064

Notice # 33666
Notice Date: 01/22/09
Reinspect date: 01/29/09

Council District: 05

Address of Violation: 10801 National Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90064

Responsible Party: (310)475-5779; Emergency phone: (310)476-0407

Violations:

1. LAMC SEC. 57.12.02 OBSTRUCTIONS
A. No person shall install or maintain any wire, barbed wire, razor ribbon, fence, cable, arial, antenna, or other obstruction on any building roof, parapet wall, or openings in an exterior wall required for fire department access, in such a manner as to obstruct access or egress, or cause a hazardous condition in the event of a fire or other emergency.

2. LAMC SEC. 57.22.01 GENERAL USE OF COMBUSTIBLE DECORATIONS AND RESTRICTIONS ON WEARING APPAREL
A. No person shall install, maintain, or use for the purpose of decoration any drape, hanging curtain, drop, vegitation, bunting, cotton batting, plastic cloth, textile, excelsior, paper, or other combustible material that would tend to increase the fire and panic hazard in any building or premises to which the public is admitted or invited. Decorative materials shall be noncombustible, flam-retardant, or shall be treated and maintained n a flame-retardant condition by means of a flame-retardant process approved by the state fire marshal in accordance with Title 19, L.C.A.C.

Page 2

Page 2 consisted of a section for observations, comments and compliance notes -- This was left blank.

Other pertinent info reads:
Failure on your part to comply with this notice on or before 01/29/09 will subject you to penalties prescribed by ordinance. A Reinspecting of the premises will be made for full compliance, noncompliance with this order shall result in a noncompliance fee based upon a fire inspector's total hourly rate, two hour minimum charge, for each reinspection required. Current minimum charge is $300 per reinspection.

For additional information phone: (213)473-7772.

By order of the chief engineer and general manager -- Inspector John Conneally.

There are signatures, both by the building manager and the inspector dated 1/22/09.

Redefining our purpose statement

The original purpose of this site was to address the injustice placed upon the tenants of 10801 and have the supergraphics' removed forever.

We feel confident this will happen thanks to the media and the various governmental agencies. You are assured that no money or fame is any part of this objective. We can see that this battle is far from over and we need to continue to put serious pressure on the power players and the government here to help extinguish this injustice.

The site has been up since the graphic went up on Wed., January 14, 2009 (they put it up on Tuesday evening after hours when no one was around). We've had over 1000 visits (in less than 2 weeks) to this site so far --media (75%), direct (20%) and search engines (5%).

We've had folks chime in from 12 different countries, but mostly from the U.S.A.

What we've learned so far is how oblivious most of us are to this issue. It's one of those nuggets that has slipped through the cracks in society because of other types of injustice going on that is more of a serious nature.

But as the proverb states, how we do the little things is how we do everything.

This is a huge life principle and as we take a closer look, this is very important.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Tropicana Contacted Again

We spoke today with Maureen and she forwarded our message along. She gave me the same sour email that leads to nowhere. I have another one here we will try: tropicanamedia@tropicana.com.

What we are asking for is a response from Tropicana as to why they would be involved with such an ad campaign?

Did they even consider checking with the fire department to see if this was safe?


Do they now know that their supergraphics' is in violation with the LAFD?

Do they know they are part of this insult that is endangering lives of an entire 6 story building? We are asking for a statement that the global community can review.


We are waiting Tropicana for your response.

Calling on the Mayor for help

This Memo just in -- courtesy of Coalition to Ban Billboard Blight:

Editorial in today's L.A. Times about the city's impotence in fighting illegal signage. It includes a particularly relevant question--why haven't we heard a single word from Mayor Villaraigosa about protecting building tenants and the public from this appropriation of the city's visual landscape for commercial advertising?

Click HERE to view this message.

Friday, January 23, 2009

1st email sent to Tropicana

We just sent out the last post to Tropicana and told them that they are part of a huge injustice going on in Los Angeles.

Now that we know their sign is in violation of the fire codes, they are part of the power players that are endangering the lives of citizens occupying an entire 6 story office building in Los Angeles. BTW -- there was a fire in our building some years ago.

We asked them for a statement and will post their comments as soon as they come in.

L.A. Fire Dept cites owners with fire code violations

TOUCHDOWN!!

Goooooooooooal or however you like to celebrate...


I spoke with Inspector Conneally today and he was the individual that came to inspect the building from the LAFD.
He said that the fire department has deemed the supergraphic to be a fire hazard and issued a fire code violation.
I have not yet seen the document, so let's wait for the official wording of this violation.
They are passing on their findings to the department of building and safety.

We are far from seeing this thing over. I anticipate that the owners will do whatever they can do legally to have this supergraphic up.

I hope you can witness how the almighty dollar in the hands of these power players has put an entire building of folks at risk and endangering all the lives of this building.



We need to keep the pressure up and reclaim this injustice.

Let your voice be heard:

Contact:

Tropicana:
800-237-7799 -- Don't have an email on them (But you can post a message on their website here) -- their office is closed for the weekend.

National Investment Company (NIC):
Since I don't know the owners and don't have their info -- contact the building manager:
Lois Forshee (310) 475-5779 lois4she@redwire.net

World Wide Rush -- Barry Rush, owner:
(can't find their website) 800-9861866

We welcome your comments.

LETTER & DOCUMENTATION FROM THE OWNERS

Here we have for you the letter and documents the owners hand delivered to state their case for their obnoxious actions. BTW -- Letters were only delivered to the tenants on the affected side of the building.

FYI: We have removed the name of the tenant on this letter to keep him off the record at this time.

Regarding the injunction, the document did not scan well and I've included all the pertinent text of judgement. Be assured that all the information is there and accurate as we received it.



Here's the Letter:



VIA HAND DELIVERY

JOE M. AGAPAY, JR., APC
Attorneys at Law
10801 National Boulevard, Suite 400
Los Angeles, California 90064-4184
Telephone (310) 470-1700
Fax (310) 470-2602 Joe M. Agapay, Jr.

E-mail: jma@agapay.com

January 21, 2009

10801 National Boulevard Los Angeles, California 90064

Re: Exterior Wall Signage Dear Tenants:

National Investment Company (NIC), the owner and Lessor of 10801 National Blvd., has engaged my office to address concerns it has become aware of relating to the exterior wall signs it has contracted to have installed on the office building in which you are a tenant.

There are base issues and factual misunderstanding that need to be immediately clarified:

1. The signs have been installed pursuant to the express provisions of an August 20, 2008 Federal Court Judgment and Permanent Injunction. It is my understanding copies of this judgment have already been circulated to the building tenants by NIC, but for your ease of reference, please find an additional copy of the Judgment enclosed with this letter. You will see that at line 8, page 3 (item no. 16) of the Judgment the NIC building at 10801 National Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064, is expressly included as a location to which the protective provisions of the Judgment apply.

2. The installing vendor of the signs advises that assertions that the sign fabric constitutes a flammable fire hazard are unwarranted. The vendor advises that the fabric used was tested and approved by the California State Fire Marshal as meeting the minimum requirements of flame resistance under applicable California regulations. Enclosed please find a copy of the State Fire Marshall's approval, with an expiration date of June 30, 2009, provided to us by the vendor of the signs.

3. Various suggestions have been made about the withholding of rent in protest of installation of the signs. For the foregoing reasons, there is no basis to conclude the signs are "illegal", which some have suggested would be the grounds for withholding of rent. Apparently it has also been suggested that installation of the signs interferes with tenant use or enjoyment of the rented space, and this constitutes grounds for the withholding of rent. In California there is both statutory and case law authority for a residential tenant to withhold rent if the landlord breaches the implied covenant of habitability (through wrongful act or negligence allows an uninhabitable condition to interfere with the residential tenant's occupancy of the rental property).

NO SUCH STATUTORY OR CASE LAW AUTHORITY exists in California that would permit a commercial tenant to withhold rent because of a claim of uninhabitable conditions.

Therefore, those who are seeking to bring about a "tenant-revolt" by the withholding of rent are not only ill advised, but are offering suggestions that could lead to tenants being subjected to eviction proceedings for failure to timely pay rent.

However, NIC does not seek to have this situation escalate into a legal battle. It is concerned about the occupancy and use by the tenants of their rental spaces and wishes to work with them in making appropriate adjustments, on a case-by-case basis.

The sign on the north wall of the building is scheduled to be removed at the end of this month. In subsequent months, other similar signs will be installed. To the extend the existence of these signs interfere, impede or otherwise adversely impact the business operations conducted at your respective rental spaces, MC is prepared to negotiate a rebate program that would take into consideration the particulars of each of the tenants so impacted.

Please contact me, or have your attorney contact me, as soon as it is convenience so we may put in place a program that will appropriately address your concerns and continued occupancy.

Sincerely yours, Best regards,

Joe M. Agapay, Jr.

JMA:nb

encl.

cc: National Investment Company


=========================

Here's the Judgment and Injunction:




Case 2:07-cv-00238-ABC-JWJ Document 155 Filed 08/20/2008

JUDGMENT AND PERMANENT INJUNCTION

JS - 6

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

WORLD WIDE RUSH, LLC, a

CASE NO. CV 07-238 ABC (jWJx) Pennsylvania corporation, and )

INSITE OUTDOOR WORKS LA, LLC, a) Delaware limited liabilitycompany,

Plaintiffs,

v.

CITY OF LOS ANGELES,

A California municipal

corporation and DOE 1 through

DOE 10, inclusive

Defendant.

On August 19, 2008, the Court granted Plaintiff World. Wide Rush, LLC and incite Outdoor Works LA, LLC's (Plaintiffs'") Motion for Summary Judgment in its entirety. Plaintiffs have advised the Court that, upon issuance of a permanent injunction, Plaintiffs will waive their claim for damages and all non-first-amendment claims (subject to reinstatement should the preliminary injunction be reversed on appeal), and this injunction will constitute the Final Judgment in this action. After considering the evidence presented and the arguments of the parties, the Court: rules as follows:

1) Sections 14.4.4(B)(9) and 14.4.4(B)(11) of the Sign Ordinance violate the First Amendment because the exceptions in those provisions for off-site and supergraphic signs permitted pursuant to special plans, supplemental use districts, and development agreements vest unfettered discretion in City officials.

2) The exceptions in sections 14.4.4(B)(9) and 14.4.4(3)(11) for off-site and supergraphic signs permitted pursuant to special plans, supplemental use districts, and development agreements are not severable.

3) The restriction in section 14.4.6 on signs within 2,000 feet of a freeway violates the First Amendment because it does not directly advance the City's asserted interests underlying the restriction and is not narrowly tailored to achieve those interests; therefore, section 14.4.6 is an unconstitutional restriction on commercial speech under

Central Hudson.

Based on the foregoing, the Court ORDERS that:

1. Plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED.

2. The City, its officers, agents, servants, employees and attorneys, and all those acting in concert or participating with them, are hereby permanently enjoined from taking the following actions 'against supergraphic signs owned and operated by Plaintiffs or those in contractual privity with them at the 21 sites specified in the modified preliminary injunction:

a. Enforcing section 14.4.4(3)(9) of the sign ordinance;

b. Enforcing section 14.4.4(3)(11) of the sign ordinance;

c. Enforcing section 14.4.6 of the sign ordinance. The sites subject to this injunction are as follows:

  1. 3280 Cahuenga Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90068
  2. 6200 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048
  3. 1606 Cotner Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90025
  4. 165 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036
  5. 5150 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036
  6. 10680 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064
  7. 1357 Highland Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038
  8. 1551 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90046
  9. 8200 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90211
  10. 8455 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048
  11. 1816, 1818, 1819 Oak St., Los Angeles, CA 90015
  12. 1640 Marengo St., Los Angeles, CA 90033
  13. 1651 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90034
  14. 8801 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035
  15. 11022 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025
  16. 10801 National Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064
  17. 3415 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90034
  18. 10924 Le Conte ,Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90024
  19. 300 S. Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90034
  20. 6081 Center Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90045
  21. 7901 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90046

This injunction prohibits the City both from interfering with Plaintiffs' maintenance of their off-site signs and supergraphic signs and from issuing citations to Plaintiffs or those with whom they contract based on the above-cited code sections or based on the inability of Plaintiffs to obtain permits for their off-site signs and supergraphic signs because of the City's enforcement of the above‑ cited code sections. The City may inspect and verify Plaintiffs' signs to ensure that they have been constructed according to applicable code provisions to ensure the safe construction of signs.

The Court further ORDERS that there being no claims left to litigate in this action, that this judgment is the final judgment in

this action.

IT IS SO ORDERED. .

DATED: August 20, 2008

AUDREY B. COLLINS

UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE



===========================================


Here's another document issued by the office of the state fire marshal:


STATE FIRE MARSHAL

.

CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY and FIRE PROTECTION
OFFICE OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL

REGISTERED FLAME RESISTANT PRODUCT

Product: Registration No.

VALMEX PRINT FRONTLIT II FR F-37405

Product marketed By:

MEHLER TEXNOLOGIES, INC. 220 B CABELL STREET

MARTINSVILLE, VA 24112

This product meets the minimum requirements of flame resistance established by the California State Fire Marshal for products identified in Section 13115, California Health and Safety Code.

The scope of the approved use of this product is provided in the current edition of the CALIFORNIA APPROVED LIST OF FLAME RETARDANT CHEMICALS AND FABRICS, GENERAL AND LIMITED APPLICATIONS CONCERNS published by the California State Fire Marshal.

Expire: 06/30/2009






Deputy State Fire Marshal



=============================


Here's another document...

Intertek giving you the technical poop -- bla bla bla


Intertek

ETL SEMKO

ASTM D635-03

Rate of Burning and/or Extent and Time of Burning of Plastics in a
Horizontal Position

Client: Clear Focus Imaging 60 Maxwell Court

Santa Rosa, CA 95401

Report No.: 3089806SAT-001 Received Date: January 27, 2006

est Date: February 1, 2006

Report Date: February 6, 2006 Specimen ID: 3-7078 Punched

Sample Description

7 mil white/black one-way window graphic product

Sample Dimensions: 125mm x 13mm x 0.18mm Sample Preparation: Tested as received.

Sample Conditioning: 73±5°F and 50±5% R.H.

Environmental Conditions 69°F and 61% r.h.

This Test Witnessed by: n/a

*This standard should be used to measure and describe the properties of materials. products, or assemblies in response to heat and flame under controlled laboratory conditions and should not be used to describe or appraise the fire hazard or fire risk of materials, products, or assemblies under actual fire conditions. However, results of this test may be used as elements of a fire risk assessment which takes into account all of the factors which are pertinent to an assessment of the fire hazard of a particular end use."

Intertek Testing Services NA, Inc.
16015 Shady falls Road

Elmendorf, Texas 78112

Telephone: 210-635-8100 Fax: 210-635-8101 www.intertek-etlsemko.com


Project No. 3089806SAT-001 February 6. 2006 Page 2 of 3

Category Designation

The behavior of specimens shall be classified HE (HB = horizontal burning) if,

a.) There is no visible signs of combustion after the source is removed, or b.) The flame front does not pass the 25 mm reference mark, or c.) The flame front passes the 25 mm reference mark but does not reach the 100 mm reference mark, or d.) The flame front reaches the 100 mm reference mark and the linear burning rate does not exceed 40 mm/min for specimens having a thickness between 3 and 13 mm or 75 mm/min for specimens having a thickness less than 3 mm.

Summary of Test Method

A bar of the material to be tested is supported horizontally at one end. The free end is exposed to a specified methane gas flame for 30s. Elapsed time (t) and Burned length

(L) are measured and reported if the specimen burns between 25mm and 100mm. An average burning rate is reported for a material if it burns to the 100-mm mark from the ignited end.

TEST RESULTS

Specimen

Did Flame

Reach

25mm

(Y/N)

Did Flame

Reach

100mm (Y/N)

,

Elapsed

Time*

(sec)

Burned

Length*

(mm)

1

No

No

N/A

N/A

2

No

No

N/A

N/A

3

No

No

N/A

NIA

4

No

No

N/A

N/A

5

No

No

N/A

N/A

6

No

No

N/A

N/A

7

No

No

N/A

N/A

8

No

No

N/A

N/A

9

No

No

N/A

N/A

Average



N/A

N/A

• This data is not available because the flame did not reach the 25mm reference mark


Intertek etl semko


Project No 3089806SAT-001 February 6. 2006 Page 3 of 3

Conclusion:

This specimen meets the HB classification requirements.

This report is for the exclusive use of intertek's Client and is provided pursuant to the agreement between1 lntertek and Its Client. lntertek's responsibility and liability are limited to the terms and conditions of the agreement lntertek assumes no liability to any party, other than to the Client In accordance with the agreement, for any loss, expense or damage occasioned by the use of this report Only the Client is authorized to copy or distribute this report and then only In its entirety. Any use of the lntertek name or one of its marks for the sale or advertisement of the tasted material, product or service must first be approved in writing by lntertek. The observations and test results in this report are relevant only to the sample tested. This report by itself does not Imply that the material, product, or service is or has ever been under an lntertek certification program.

This report consists of three pages.

February 6, 2006

Servando Romo Project Manager


Reviewed and approved:

February 6, 2006

C. Anthony Penaloza

Flammability Testing Team Leader


Intertek etl semko