Ken Dyda, a former aerospace engineer, was active in the formation of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes (to preserve the rural atmosphere and coastal views and avoid commercial overdevelopment of the coastal areas). After it was incorporated in 1973, he was elected to 3 RPV City Council terms before retiring from politics. After 32 years, he has now been reelected to the City Council, and he has definite ideas on the future directions for RPV.
His concerns include reestablishing Council oversight over city staff. He has seen many city government mistakes made when poorly supervised staff gets careless, such as the recent controversial mausoleum project at Green Hills, and the ongoing storm drain controversies. Reports to the Council need to have cited references so the Council can make informed decisions. Ken wants more transparency to provide knowledge to both the Council Members and the citizens. He is encouraged by the new City Manager and other new staff.
Currently, reports come out Friday morning for the Council to consider on their following Tuesday evening Council Meeting. He wants more time for a public comment period before the Council takes action. These reports should be published 2 weeks before the next Council Meeting. Everyone should be working from the same knowledge base to produce better decisions. He also wants to have competitive bids for city projects and services.
He wants to review the LA County Sheriff’s Department law enforcement contract with the City. He is concerned about the new California trend for plea-bargaining felonies to avoid severe sentences and reduce prison costs. Some of these criminals return to the City and resume their criminal activities. Also, he said the Sheriff’s Department is budgeted for 4 cars for RPV, but he has seen only 2.
The most significant problem he sees in RPV is the Portuguese Bend slide that continues disrupting Palos Verdes Drive South and requiring frequent expensive road reconstruction there. He wants to treat the cause, not just the symptoms, and decrease the slide movement to 1 inch per year. (In the past, the City controlled slide movement by using dewatering wells and minimizing irrigation uphill, to prevent the land in this area from sliding toward the ocean on the sloping clay layer underneath.)
In the past, he worked very hard to maintain open spaces, avoid coastal development, avoid large mansion-type homes and preserve views. In the early years of the City, he fought for a View Ordnance giving homeowners a legal mechanism for stopping new development that would damage their views and property values.