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December 12
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[KHTS] – Voting for the Val Verde Leadership Board wrapped up with three new members on Tuesday.

Robert Talamantez, Jamie Briano, Carolina Lopez, Erica Larsen and Kevin Smalley competed for one of three open spots on the Val Verde Community Benefits Committee.

Talamantez came out on top with 129 votes, Lopez close behind with 124 votes followed by Briano with 119 votes, Smalley with 25 votes and Larsen with 23 votes. The top three were given spots on the Val Verde Community Benefits Committee.

The Val Verde Community Benefits Committee is a funding organization that receives $360,000 annually from the valverde_chiquitaChiquita Canyon Landfill. The money comes from a 1997 agreement between the Val Verde community and the Chiquita Canyon Landfill.

Smalley and Larsen, who came in fourth and fifth, are both leaders in Citizens For Chiquita Canyon Landfill Compliance. The group opposes the planned expansion of the landfill and its continued operation beyond the agreed-to 2019 closure date.

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34 Comments

  1. Grace says:

    Congratulations to Talamantez, Lopez, and Briano. It seems, however, a conflict of interest for Briano to be on the VVCBC when he is paid/personally receives funds from the very money the VVCBC receives.

  2. Susie Evans says:

    Correction to your article. Kevan Smalley and Erica Larsen are not anti-landfill they are pro compliance of the laws that are in existence.

  3. Sandy Hughes says:

    Pfffft! 23 & 25 votes… stuff THAT in your anti-landfill ego filled hats! makes me laugh, how embarrassing for them!
    I agree tho, I have family there and I’ve heard for YEARS, decades even, that Briano being on any of the local boards is a major conflict of interest. People have fought that fight before.

  4. Steven Lee says:

    Too my knowledge I have been informed that all five candidates are anti landfill expansion. So that was not the issue. All five would be fantastic in the job, two were incumbents and the third is well known by parents. They decide how to spend the money owed to Val Verde for the stench and possible health effects that they endure. The agreement was shoved down Val Verde’s throat 19 years ago, and many of the votes yesterday were part of the 112 votes that showed up and voted against the landfill expansion. That was 112 to 0.

  5. Jaime briano says:

    Get your complaints right Grace,it’s CBFC.
    Lastly,I DO NOT directly receive funds from the board.The non profit I work for receives a grant from the CBFC..There is a difference, I do not own the Sheriffs Youth Foundatation.

    • Grace says:

      I’m sorry for the incorrect acronym, Mr. Briano. I was going by “Val Verde Community Benefits Committee,” which the article cited. I used the word “seems” in my initial comment intentionally, so thank you for the clarification and explanation.

  6. Greg says:

    Jaime. So, the CBFC receives dump money. Your non-profit receives money from the CBFC dump money AND you receive the money and are on the board of the CBFC. You are, at best, indirectly compensated by dump money. Reality: this is a conflict of interest.

  7. Greg Kimura says:

    This is Greg Kimura, a resident of Val Verde posting. I believe there is some sort of misunderstanding about who is posting what on this site. To clarify, I did not write the post from Sat, Nov 7th.

    I served on the CBFC board for three years as a non-voting representative. Every time a discussion about the YAL came up, Jaime Briano left the office and recused himself from the vote.

    Thank you.

    Greg Kimura

  8. Greg Kimura says:

    The CBFC was formed after the 1997 contract between the VVCA and Chiquita Canyon Landfill. One of the requirements of the contract was for the community to form a Community Benefits Funding Committee (CBFC), which is funded annually by the Chiquita Canyon Landfill.

    The CBFC funds programs in our community, one being the Youth Activity League (YAL).

    The YAL is a LA County Sheriff’s program. We have a sheriff who runs the program at our LA County Park. Jaime Briano and other residents are employees of the YAL. The YAL gives the kids in Val Verde a place to “hang out” after school and on days when school is out – summer vacation, etc. The kids participate in sports, play games, do crafts and there’s even a homework club with teachers from the local school assisting the kids.

    An excellent program for our kids. I hope that we as a community do whatever it takes to keep this program going.

    • Greg H. says:

      “I hope that we as a community do whatever it takes to keep this program going.”

      Youth programs are great and it would be a blessing for them to continue. Yet, it is not in the best interest of everyone’s health, home values, etc. to continuing the dump “pay-off” money. The dump needs to honor its agreement to close.

  9. Greg Kimura says:

    I believe that most people in Val Verde are against the expansion of the landfill. The reality is that we have tried many things to stop the expansion and none have been successful.

    At this point, it seems like the expansion will be approved. The decision will be made by the five LA County Supervisors; it is not our decision to make and at this point, I don’t know how much input we’ll be allowed to give. Being that this is the case, I and others in our community have been working on a back-up plan, however due to personal issues, I have stepped aside and others in the community have continued to push forward.

    The back-up plan is quite simple; if the landfill expansion is approved, the community will receive mitigation fees directly from the landfill vs filing requests from the county. If the landfill expansion is stopped, then there will be no need for the agreement and no harm is done.

    There are a small minority of people in our community who would like to see the mitigation fees go to the county vs coming directly to our community. They have their reasons, but I don’t agree with them.

    Thank you.

    Greg

  10. Greg H. says:

    This is another resident of VV named Greg. I was the one who posted the comments on Sat, Nov 7. Sorry for any confusion.

    Greg, thank you for taking the time to share your comments because they confirm a conflict exists. It is good to know that Jaime recuses himself from votes directly related to YAL. VV would expect nothing less. The only reason to recuse yourself from a vote is when a conflict exists.

    Please know these comments are not meant to attack a person’s character. They are only stating the obvious conflicts occurring because of the board membership. The same concerns also extend to the VVCA, in my opinion.

    Thanks.

    • Greg Kimura says:

      Greg H., Good to meet you.

      I’d like to address the conflict of interest thereby recusing yourself from a vote and being able to serve on that board.

      The majority of items brought before the CBFC board are not related to the YAL and the CBFC meetings deal with running the organization. Since very little time is spent discussing the YAL, Jaime Briano rarely recuses himself from the meeting. However, if he couldn’t do his job as a CBFC board member, because he had to recuse himself too often, then there would be a problem with him serving on the CBFC Board.

      I have seen him represent our community at the CBFC meetings and I feel that he has done a great job. I feel the rest of the board has also been not only effective, but also has worked well as a team. It’s good to see this in our community.

      Thank you.

      Greg

  11. Susie Evans says:

    Please read/watch the Channel 4 news Investigation on Santa Susanna by Joel Grover. Chiquita Canyon Landfill took in nuclear waste from Rocketdyne and the tainted dirt from the Malibu school. I don’t think anyone in Val Verde wants these things so close to their homes and ergo endangering their health and lives.
    http://www.nbclosangeles.com/investigations/I-Team-LAs-Nuclear-Secret-Camp-Cover-Up-344006382.html

    • Greg Kimura says:

      Susie,

      We do not want these things coming to the landfill. I think we can all agree to that, right? The question is, how do we stop it?

  12. Steven Lee says:

    Hey Greg K, if everything that was tried did not work, why is the landfill writing a whole new draft DEIR? Who is working on the back up plan? I hope there is no conflict of interest with anyone on that plan. It would be nice to have representation that actually would fight for the people here in Val Verde. I hope the new board is not telling the landfill they will settle. I as a resident who lives with the effects on my lunges, expect my representatives to fight for my health and my communities health. Is the fact that you do not smell it at your home the reason you are willing to throw in the towel so easy. Take the benefits and let the rest the town suffer? A little self centered.

    • Greg Kimura says:

      Steve Lee,

      I am doubtful of what you write, so please provide information on the following:

      1. You state that the landfill is writing a whole new draft DEIR. Is this a fact? If so, can you verify it? Have you seen the new document?
      2. You state that you live with the effects on your lungs. Is this speculation or do you have proof it’s from the landfill?
      3. Tell me what you mean by saying that I am willing to throw in the towel so easily?
      4. What do you mean when you write: Take the benefits and let the rest of the town suffer? How does having a back up plan change whether the town suffers or not?
      5. How is this being a little self centered?
      I do not understand your logic and I am curious where these ideas come from. I hope you can shed some light.

  13. Susie Evans says:

    FYI – Jaime is on the land use committee for Val Verde. He is one of a couple of people from Val Verde who would be the ones to sign any deal with the landfill. Greg K. – your back up plan is what? “The back-up plan is quite simple; if the landfill expansion is approved, the community will receive mitigation fees directly from the landfill vs filing requests from the county. If the landfill expansion is stopped, then there will be no need for the agreement and no harm is done.” I do not want the landfill to expand. They are already 10 feet above the ridge-line which is in violation of the agreement from 1997. They want to go higher, about 10 stories higher. Lest we not forget the toxic and radio-active waste they have taken in already.
    I believe the county would take over the funding of the youth programs if there were no funding from the DUMP.

    • Greg Kimura says:

      Susie,

      The plan is simple. If the landfill expansion is approved, then the community will receive mitigation fees directly from the landfill. If the landfill expansion is not approved, then the contract between Val Verde and the landfill will provide no money for the community.

      If the community doesn’t agree to this plan, then the county will take the mitigation fees and anytime we need financial assistance, we’ll have to fill out a request, which will be approved by either the County or another board. You can bet that the other board will not be our Val Verde CBFC.

      If you can stop the expansion, then please do so. The community will greatly appreciate it. If you can’t, then at least allow the people working on the mitigation fee agreement to do their job.

  14. Jaime briano says:

    I am one amongst 4 residents in this committee and am not the chair.This committee has addressed the Val Verde residents numerous times at Val Verde
    Park. The committee has informed the residents that regardless of the outcome,nothing will be signed unless the majority of the community is behind the committee.FYI,the committee originally had representation from VVCA,CBFC,CAC,CATC.Obviousely, everyone is aware that CATC decided to sign a term sheet that pretty much says they can never say anything negative against the landfill.They did this without seeking legal council or getting feedback from the residents they are supposed to represent.I’ve stated numerous times, I do not want an expansion.Your right, the community is successful,great. What if we aren’t?

  15. Susie Evans says:

    Greg K and Jaime B can either of you tell me that the plan B (accepting money directly from the DUMP if the expansion is approved by the County Supervisors) will stop the illegal substances going into Chiquita Canyon Landfill/DUMP the residents have uncovered? Will the punishment for violations be significant enough to make them think before they accept it? I see nothing that has slowed them down or made them think twice about violating the CUP – toxins, radiation – going above the ridge-line – smells and more.

  16. Steven Lee says:

    Greg K.

    1. Roselyn Wayman, who oversees the VVCAC board says the new Draft Deir will be out in January, which the landfill representative confirmed the night of the last meeting.
    2. Greg once I moved to Val Verde I started having sever Asthma attacks and was prescribed Montelukast. That along with you telling embers of the town you had documentation from Samuel Clinic stating that there are more lung related problems here than any where else that they have clinics. Thirdly Randy the last president of the VVCAC said if we tested the air and found something the landfill could come after us for libel. Which leads one to wonder. Third the ASTDR that oversees landfills states in chapter 3, “Once in the air, the landfill gases can be carried to the community with the wind. Odors from day-to-day landfill activities are indicative of gases moving above ground.” There have been verified odor complaints which would be foreign gases to anyone’s lunges.
    3. When people tried to get the Latino population to hear the complaint you actually denied it from happening. You said you alone had the right to decide what could be heard at the community meetings as you were the president. When enough people showed up, they were accused of trying to destroy the town, and at one point you said, “Do you want to go out there and tell them they cannot have soccer?”
    4. You have heard the same stories I have of people that are sick. So to take the money, which as the lawyer from Malibu told us, to do so would also stop lawsuits for all the breaching of contract, would in fact be taking the money and ignoring the health problems that many here are suffering.
    5. It is self centered because it is your plan and your plan alone with a few that are fighting for it. The town voted unanimously for no expansion, but you have posted many times that the town is for the landfill, and only a few are against it. It would be a better plan to hold them accountable to their contract and if they cannot due that then allow the town to have their day in court. If we lose than the county will have to start funding the programs that they now make the town fund with stench money. Before the money the town actually had more programs from the county. So we have been given stench and than forced to pay for the programs with the stench money as we watched the programs pulled from our community.

  17. Jaime briano says:

    I’m going to say my part and treat this site as I did “Next Door”wich is permanently sign off.Fighting the landfill sounds great.We average 10-20 folks at the “Town Hall Meetings,”sorry folks,I wish I can personally fill up the VV rec room time after time,just not possible.A great deal of our residents raise more hell when the CBFC questions a soccer grant request.Unfortunately, this seems to get more people to our meetings than something life changing like a dump expansion.The rest of the complainers do it on Next Door and make excuses as to why they can not come to a meeting.It truly saddens me. It’s going to take a lot more community involvement to prevail.I do apologize if I come across as synical, however what I stated is a fact. I applaud everyone who has done a great deal of work. I know the feeling. I’ve been at the park at meetings every Thursday for 2-3 hours for the last 4-5 years rarely missing a meeting. Next time when individuals have that knee jerk reaction to be opinionated and criticize ,stop and ask yourself,when was the last time I got involved to make a difference.

  18. Steven Lee says:

    Jaimie you are correct more people showed up to the C4CCLC meeting in the park, they are the organization that openly is fighting the landfill to hold them accountable. Many people have told me they will not go to the the VVCA meetings because some board members say, “We are going to lose anyway,” So who wants to be defended by a board who is defeated? To bad the President and the Vice President did not go to the park to hear the C4CCLC presentation. It would have been nice to have a full VVCA board there. Three of the current members at that time did show up and supported the fight. If you remember when the C4CCL group showed up at the clubhouse you refused to enter the building, to even hear what they had to say. You could visible be seen talking to people who pulled up and then they left after talking with you. Many people who support soccer in our town have signed the petition against the landfill, even when they knew the funds would be affected. One mother said, “I am tired of how sick my family feels, it is more important to have peace of mind.” In 2005 the VVCA board fought tooth and nail for the community against the expansion. I have reviewed the minutes and they really fought, against great odds they fought and the landfill gave up at that time. They say it was the economy, but trash always comes in.

  19. Susie Evans says:

    Jaime, I am sorry you feel that way. I do what I can to participate from 3,000 miles away and from home. I have family commitments that prevent me from becoming a board member on any of the committees (VVCAC, CBFC, CATC, VVCA). I am grateful for the town residents that are vocal both on Nextdoor and on the other social sites. They are doing what they can to get the word out and let their own voices be heard. Even with the social media, the meetings of the aforementioned committees are not well advertised in our little town, ergo a smaller turnout. I know many residents that feel our current representation has already thrown in the towel and is not representing them, so they do not go to the meetings.

  20. Steven Lee says:

    KHTS? Isn’t this the same station that ran the interview with John Mussela, the PR person for the landfill? So was this a propaganda article also a paid for article by the landfill? At the VVCA meeting last night Jaimie informed us that he did not send KHTS the results from the election, and that leaves Rosalyn Wayman and the person who counted with her. But then I was informed that Greg Kimura was somehow on the private emails. This all seems strange and somewhat slanted.

  21. Greg Kimura says:

    We love living in Val Verde and we have many wonderful neighbors and friends here. We think this is a great place to live and we are supportive of the efforts made by the people who care about our community.

    I have stated on numerous occasions that I am against the expansion of the landfill. I know that the majority of the residents in our community would like the landfill expansion stopped, however many do enjoy the benefits provided by the funds from the landfill. I believe that all residents at least indirectly benefit from the funds – lower crime rate, better opportunities for our kids, greater chance for a quality education, safety from a sheriff in town, etc.

    I’m a businessman, so I analyze the landscape and differentiate fact from fiction. I’ve given many, many hours toward the fight against the landfill expansion and based on the results, I don’t see a way to stop it. This does not mean that I am for the expansion, it just means I don’t see the need to put a lot more effort into the battle.

    One task that I do see as important is to do what we can to insure that IF and WHEN the landfill expansion is approved, our community leaders have a voice in what they are and aren’t allowed to do.

    The people who continue to battle can do so if they like and contrary to what they believe, I’m not doing anything to stop them. I just hope they don’t cause too much more damage to the credibility and reputation of our community and it’s leaders, because it will be us, the community leaders who will be working with the county on the conditions of the permit.

  22. Susie Evans says:

    Greg Kimura 2 months ago
    My name is Greg Kimura and I am a Board Member (Councilman) of the Castaic Area Town Council (CATC)… As a member of the CATC, I was sworn in by the County of Los Angeles. This includes upholding the bylaws of our organization and I must do so, whether I agree or not. As a member of the Board of Directors for a Corporation, we must uphold our bylaws. If we don’t, we put our entity at risk with the Secretary of State. Some people in our community do not understand the intricacies of being a Board Member, which is understandable, as very few have education in business entities or have the proper experience… For those who would like to see the CATC bylaws or would like additional information on the Town Council or it’s representatives, here is the website: castaicareatowncouncil.org It’s a great place to find out about what’s happening in our community. You can also do a Google search on Castaic Area Town Council. Thank you.

    Taken from https://www.youtube.com/all_comments?v=yIyUuNc5onM

    Greg the town of Val Verde has signed enough petitions to recall you. They needed 155 and they turned in 219. Please resign to ensure that the entity of the CATC is not put at risk with the Secretary of State

    • Greg Kimura says:

      Steve Lee,

      A solid analysis requires facts – I think we can agree on this. If this is true, can you tell me how you verified the information and how you came to your conclusions? Also, if “new” information has been presented to you, how does this change your position?

      A. On November 10, 2015 above, you wrote the following in response to my post: “if everything that was tried did not work, why is the landfill writing a whole new draft DEIR?”

      B. On November 12, 2015, I wrote: “I am doubtful of what you write, so please provide information on the following:

      1. You state that the landfill is writing a whole new draft DEIR. Is this a fact? If so, can you verify it? Have you seen the new document?”

      C. On November 12, 2015, you replied: “1. Roselyn Wayman, who oversees the VVCAC board says the new Draft Deir will be out in January, which the landfill representative confirmed the night of the last meeting.”

      D. The Signal put out an article dated November 13, 2015 regarding the landfill expansion. There was no mention of a “whole new draft DEIR” as you stated here. In fact, the article states that the final EIR will be out early next year.

  23. Steven Lee says:

    It is harder to stop now that you made a deal with Castaic to give them 30% of the mitigation money if the landfill expands. Of course they will be against our health for the money. Please list other things you have done to stop the landfill. Did you go to Santa Clarita board meetings? What did you do, besides denying those who were representing the Latino population the right to speak at a Val Verde meeting. You even sent the board members letters that if they voted 100% to sign the letter you would sign it. Once we voted 100% you said you could not support it because you had a business and a house. Boy I sure got enough emails telling me that if I supported it some very drastic things would happen to me, my family, my friends, and the rest of the town. I am not sure that is support.

  24. Susie Evans says:

    WOW – I guess the criminals that are engaging in recent crime sprees in Val Verde did not hear about you believing the dump money makes us safer. Someone should let them know that we are better off because of the money the dump pays us, even if we are being slowly killed with toxins, radioactive materials and sludge. And we should quit fighting because they are bigger than us? NO, David did not give up and he felled Goliath.

  25. Susie Evans says:

    Greg – Just who is causing the damage to the credibility and reputation to our community and it’s leaders? You are no longer a member of the VVCAC board and the residents of Val Verde are doing a recall of you from the Castaic Area Town Council. What are these people doing to cause damage?

    “The people who continue to battle can do so if they like and contrary to what they believe, I’m not doing anything to stop them. I just hope they don’t cause too much more damage to the credibility and reputation of our community and it’s leaders, because it will be us, the community leaders who will be working with the county on the conditions of the permit.”

  26. Steven Lee says:

    Greg Kimura says:
    Tuesday, Dec 23, 2014 at

    One night, Steve Lee and I went to a friend’s house near the corner where Lincoln turns to go toward Chiquito Canyon. It was maybe 8:30 pm or so and I recall it being a warm summer evening. As we spoke with our friend in front of his house, I started to feel sick to my stomach. I walked to the street and I still felt sick. I thought it was something I had for dinner and I was ready to say goodnight to everyone, but when I came back to my friends, Steve made a comment that he was feeling nauseous and he wanted to go home. Note that we did not eat dinner together, so it wasn’t the food. We said our goodbyes and when we got out of the neighborhood, I started feeling better. Granted, I still felt sick, but the feeling was subsiding. It took a couple hours at home, before I no longer felt sick.

    When I spoke to Steve about this, he told me he felt better when he got away from our friend’s home on Lincoln.

    What I’ve found out is that Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) is a landfill gas (comes from landfills) and can make you nauseaous. In high enough concentrations, it can kill. H2S also comes from the decomposition of green waste.

    H2S is called an extremely toxic and irritating gas. Exposure can lead to nausea, headaches, dizziness, eye irritation and respiratory illness. Here’s a link to the document http://el.erdc.usace.army.mil/workshops/04jun-wots/kaluschue.pdf The interesting thing is that these are the same complaints we receive from residents. So is the landfill poisoning the residents of Val Verde?

    I think that we need to test the air for H2S. There have been numerous problems with methane gas at the landfill and in one instance, the reading was 45% (more methane than double the oxygen in the air we breathe) Based on the fact that there are emission gas problems at the landfill, there’s a good chance they are also releasing H2S. What happens if we find out that the landfill has been allowing this extremely toxic gas to leak from their site to the community?

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Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station deputies arrested a 24-year-old man and his 20-year-old companion, both from Saugus, on multiple charges early Friday.
SCV Deputies Book Saugus Couple on Drug, Firearm and Other Charges
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station has provided the public safety report for Stevenson Ranch (Zone 3) for November 27 to December 3, 2017.
Crime Blotter: Theft by Access Card, Burglary in Stevenson Ranch
1975 - Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society incorporates as a 501c3 nonprofit [Heritage Junction]
The National Weather Service has extended its Red Flag Warning of extreme fire danger for coastal and valley areas of Los Angeles and Ventura counties through Monday at 8 p.m.
Fire Danger Warning Extended to Monday 8 p.m.
The Rye Fire is 93 percent contained and the Creek Fire is 95 percent contained, according to a Sunday evening update from CalFire and the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
Rye Fire 93 Percent Contained, Creek Fire Nearly Out
Derelict since the 1994 earthquake, the Pioneer Oil Refinery in Newhall was the first productive oil refinery in the American West and is believed to be the oldest existing refinery in the world today. Unfunded restoration plans have come and gone. Now that the surrounding property is under development, will the promises be kept?
Gate-King and the Pioneer | Commentary by Leon Worden
The Thomas Fire raged in Ventura County and west into Santa Barbara County Sunday, forcing evacuations as the blaze threatened coastal communities of Carpinteria and Montecito and moved inland into the Los Padres National Forest.
Thomas Fire Threatens Coastal Ventura, Santa Barbara County
Retired Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station deputy and former Newhall School Board member Mike Shapiro's home in Ojai was destroyed by the Thomas fire, which broke out Monday, December 4 and has scorched 173,000 acres as of Sunday morning.
Thomas Fire Levels Ojai Home of Ex-SCV Deputy, NSD Board Member
1941 - Three days after Pearl Harbor attack, 165th and 185th Infantry Regiments assigned to Saugus; Edison power substation guarded 24/7 [timeline]
1983 - U.S. release of John Carpenter's "Christine;" blew up fake gas station in Valencia [watch scene (R)]
CalFire and the Los Angeles County Fire Department updated residents on the status of the Rye Fire and Creek Fire, as well as evacuation locations and road closures as of Friday at 6 p.m.
Rye Fire 50 Percent Contained, Creek Fire 70 Percent Contained
A death investigation is under way at the Crescent Valley Mobile Home Park at 23500 The Old Road in Newhall, according to Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Sgt. Chris Maurizi.
Detectives Investigating Woman’s ‘Suspicious’ Death at Mobile Home Park