Mayor Meister answers WeHo’s burning questions

The West Hollywood West Residents Association hosted Mayor Lauren Meister for a virtual Q&A on Saturday, where she answered a wide array of questions from residents and spoke about her vision for the city as its new mayor. Meister is a longtime member and a past president of the association.

“I walk every day through our neighborhoods and see what’s going on,” she said.

Meister said she intends to focus on homelessness, housing affordability and public safety, which she believes are the city’s three biggest issues. She also wants to make West Hollywood “the most prepared and resilient city in the country,” she said, through more robust emergency preparedness. She would also like to see WeHo evolve in a “premier green city” through enhanced urban forests and efforts to promote biodiversity.

“Nature in the middle of a big city makes a big difference for quality of life,” she said.

She intends to bring back coffees and meet-and-greets to build a stronger relationship with the community, and is looking at reducing the length of presentations during city council meetings so the public can participate without having to wait so long.

“The public’s time is as important as our time,” she said.

WHEN WILL THE NEW POOL OPEN?

With the old pool demolished and the 24-Hour Fitness about to shut down, Kimberly Winick spoke on behalf of seniors in the neighborhood when asking about the completion date of the new city pool at West Hollywood Park.

MAYOR MEISTER: The new pools (a lap pool and an open swimming pool) are set to be finished at the end of October or early November. While the original plans were to complete the construction in phases, leaving the old pool open for residents to use, the city decided to err on the side of caution when COVID hit and instead scheduled all the demolition at once. 

WILL WE BE ALLOWED ON THE ROOFTOP TERRACE OF RESTORATION HARDWARE AGAIN?

Restoration Hardware, 8565 Melrose Ave.

The rooftop terrace atop Restoration Hardware on Melrose Ave., with its stunning views and luxurious seating, was once readily accessible to the public. When seeking approval from the Planning Commission years ago, the developers were eager to promote the rooftop as a shared public/private space, but lately access has been restricted.

MAYOR MEISTER: “Unfortunately, it was never codified in the conditions. It is not part of the conditions when they got approved, and that’s why they don’t have to provide that space.” She remembers the Restoration Hardware CEO excitedly inviting the public to have coffee on the rooftop. “They know what they said at these meetings,” she said, and intends to keep pressing Restoration Hardware to restore access. 

WHAT’S HAPPENING WITH THE BEVERLY-BONNER GATHERING SPACE?

Residents again lambasted the plans to transform the small city parking lot at the corner of Beverly Blvd. and Bonner Drive into a tiny public park featuring a distinct shell-like structure meant for people to relax and recreate in. The Public Facilities Commission most recently joined in the criticism at their last meeting, expressing need for a “reboot.” Many neighbors explicitly felt that the city had turned a deaf ear to their concerns over the many years it’s been in development.

MAYOR MEISTER: “I do think the Arts Commission took these spaces over and lost track of why they were there in the first place,” she said. She worried about the effects on LEICA, the high-end camera store abutting the gathering space, agreed with the Public Facilities Commission’s assessment. Resident Leslie Karliss mentioned her correspondence with the developers, who said the project is on hold for all intents and purposes, and a completion date has been pushed back by several years.

HOW IS WEHO DEALING THE RISING HOMELESSNESS PROBLEM?

Problems with the homeless were at the top of residents’ minds — from how to deal with incidents, to the total population, to the costs.

MAYOR MEISTER: “We’re dancing as fast as we can,” Meister said, in trying to remedy a towering problem with no clear solutions. She pointed to the work of the city’s outreach teams in trying to mitigate disturbances caused by the homeless. She hopes one day they will be on call 24 hours a day but with the city’s budget diminished by 25 to 30 percent because of COVID, it’s unlikely at present. As for the costs, “It’s millions of dollars,” she said. “At least 60 percent can’t just be provided an apartment. They need mental health care. And they need to be someplace they can transition. They can’t be left on their own.” Of the overall efforts to combat homelessness, she she, “It doesn’t feel like it’s working. There’s no walls, no boundaries. It’s a regional problem. People can cross La Brea or Beverly, and it’s (suddenly) a West Hollywood issue.”

Mayor Meister encouraged the audience to contact her directly with concerns at lmeister@weho.org or (323) 848-6460.

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Bonni Moschetti
Bonni Moschetti
22 days ago

Will the NEW POOL have an area with lounge chairs by the pool where you can lay in the sun after swimming–With the pool closing at 24-Fitness we need to have a place to lay in the sun. Thank you,,,

Richard
Richard
24 days ago

What a waste of space. Another bureaucratic hack. Incompetent or liar??? HOLD HER ACCOUNTABLE FOR PROMISES FOUR YEARS FROM NOW.

C.R.
C.R.
1 month ago

Every elected official says they want to work on housing affordability but what are you capable of actually doing about it? Are you going to cap the rents on housing in a substantial portion of the city well beyond what rent control there is now? Obviously not. Unless you want to go big somehow and get really radical and progressive, you’re just saying nothing on that subject. No point in believing any politician about it, on any level of government.

Details
Details
1 month ago

So many of the comments on this article are so needlessly disrespectful. This is an invitation for the folks that made them to keep this type of hatefulness to yourself. If you can make a positive contribution great or if you have a legitimate critical issue, please take it directly to the Mayor so something can be done to resolve it. Thanking you in advance.

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[…] Meister encouraged the audience to contact her directly with concerns at [email protected]weho.org or (323) […]

x@gmail.com
1 month ago

RESTORATION HARDWARE.. how was it not codIfied in the conditioned. Did anyone who was voting actually read the conditions before they signed on it? this is pretty alarming. city should fix this issue by whatever method.. is the response really “oops”? this is extremely fishy…

Details
Details
1 month ago
Reply to  x@gmail.com

It always helps to have knowledgable folks on Planning Commission and equally important onHPC.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
1 month ago

It is refreshing to watch a true leader focus first on the fundamental issues of sound municipal governance over the performative bullpucky distracting the neophytes and nouveau wannabes who clearly have their sights set elsewhere. Crime, homelessness and affordability are the priorities. The SHE squad continue to abuse West Hollywood politics as their personal stage. And yes, please, let’s limit the pompous and verbose adjournment motions and Councilmember comments time. They can get their points across in far less time. Talk less, listen more.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

Hilarious! You must be a personal friend of hers. A plant here? A “true leader”?! Alan, I challenge you to show me once, where this incredibly ineffective woman has exhibited this attribute during any office that she has ever held. She has done absolute nothing. She only wants titles for dinner party status. She has only exhibited that she is a climber, over and over again, with absolutely nothing to offer. True leadership can only be earned. This woman does not care an ounce about anyone, but herself and will not fix one issue and you will so clearly see… Read more »

Michael Gracr
Michael Gracr
1 month ago
Reply to  John

You are totally right. She’s a major disasters. Like the SHE.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Gracr

Brainless Michael, in the article it refers to her as “she” as well, which is grammatically correct and it was only meant to be grammatically correct, obviously when I typed the word, you shallow, virtue signaling buffoon. Obviously you have not a single idea or thought to offer. Lunacy.

Recall the SHE
Recall the SHE
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Before you stroke reaching for a package of Depends, the kind Biden uses, I think he meant Sepi, Horvath and Erica Erickson. The Unisex Toilet Three SHE, not the Meister “she” she/her/them to be Woke and politically correct. During this great time of trial here in what used to be called Hot Boys Town at the end of the last century before these hicks from the sticks, the SHE, ended up in City Hall!

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Recall the SHE

I wasn’t concerned at all, wasn’t stroking or needing depends (none of this makes any sense). I couldn’t care less what any of you say. There is an extremely important issue here, and all this just proves my point even further that many people are completely unaware or care about the issue at hand.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Meant to type *and that they don’t care about the issue at hand.

On another note, if Michael Gracr agrees, genuinely with me about Lauren Meister, and wasn’t doing what it had seemed, then I’m glad to hear it and I rescind what I said about him.

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Gracr

uh oh here comes another copy/paste rant about unisex toilets from Michael…

Recall the SHE
Recall the SHE
1 month ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

I guess you’re not too worldly when it comes to gay life and Men cruising public restrooms. Like in England it is called cottaging. Cruising restrooms, urinals, also a big deal in the USA. But in what was hot boystown that will be verbotten, with no urinals. To satisfy the National Organization of middle-aged Women which seems to be now running West Hollywood… aka the SHE!

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
1 month ago
Reply to  Recall the SHE

You are OBSESSED with toilets. It’s really abnormal and not healthy. Get a life.

His Geace
His Geace
1 month ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

You would be obsessed with toilets too, especially urinals if you’re family had an interest in manufacturing them. How can you get a life when urinals are your livelihood?

But Shyne, Horvath, Erica Erickkson and Meister will pay a very high price for their stand on unisex toilets when they squat on the toilet seat. There’s a new organization of men protesting unisex toilets called Don’t Lift The Seat!

Tom Van Patton
Tom Van Patton
28 days ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

I concur. This person who is obsessed with toilets must be very old. That sexual practice is practically non existent today what with the internet and the various ways to make contact. Only the most self loathing old men would even know what that is about. The modern Gay today both men and women are well adjusted people with wonderful careers and families. In case you were asleep there was a thing called Gay Liberation and the gays did not have to stay in the closet or in the posters case go to a toilet for sexual reasons.. Totally from… Read more »

mike dunn
mike dunn
29 days ago
Reply to  Michael Gracr

Its very difficult too watch any of the cities meetings when so many of the Council Members and their commissioners constantly use the term “Um”

Richard
Richard
24 days ago
Reply to  John

Right on, John. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

John
John
1 month ago

Incredible – What an unintelligent and horrible politician! Lauren blames COVID, when the blame should so clearly be directed at the politician’s, including herself, and the way they are HANDLING Covid. And to think just days ago she made a public statement that will further destroy our City’s economy and businesses: “If you don’t want to get vaccinated just don’t visit our businesses, Get takeout or delivery.” How disgusting, reckless, uniformed and asinine! She should resign just for uttering these words! Does she even have even an ounce of sense or consideration, enough to consider: The people who have had Covid… Read more »

Jim Nasium
Jim Nasium
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Did she really say that?! Wow, I’m definitely voting for her again.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim Nasium

Meant to ask, are you also a personal friend of hers? A plant on here? Seems like it or maybe it’s just the below? (replies from before)…

Art
Art
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Meant to ask . . . off your meds?

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Art

Very predictable response from yet another brainless person who obviously has absolutely nothing to actually contribute. The oldest one in the book – Attempted insults when you have nothing to worthy to contribute or debate.

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
1 month ago
Reply to  John

when you have nothing to worthy to contribute or debate.”

There is no debate to be had. You think way too highly of yourself.

Art
Art
1 month ago
Reply to  John

See greeneyedguy below . . .

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
1 month ago
Reply to  John

Get vaccinated or scram, John.

WehoFan
WehoFan
1 month ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

Greeneyedguy don’t tell Black people how to treat their bodies.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim Nasium

Since my other comments didn’t post for some reason —
Also Jim, well… I certainly wouldn’t brag about or tell anyone the reason why you are voting for her again, if I were you because it transparently shows how you think and/or don’t think regarding these issues, which is obviously, well, just like her.

Art
Art
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim Nasium

Haha. YES! Me too!

Last edited 1 month ago by Art
No to Rants
No to Rants
1 month ago
Reply to  John

It seems you may have fallen out of the wrong side of bed with a rant of personal issues to unleash. As a Mayor or in this case Lauren Meister can only set a standard and voice its importance, she does not have a crystal ball or a magic wand. The rest depends on the personal responsibility and integrity of the residents. This has been a time to be resourceful and grateful for the moratoriums and additional financial help available afforded by government resources. They are not Santa and his Elves. During conditions of hardship in earlier pandemics, the depression… Read more »

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  No to Rants

You are 100% wrong No to Rants.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  No to Rants

Meant to say, that you are 100% wrong about the Mayor among other things, but I do agree with some of what you are saying regarding citizens.

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  No to Rants

Also – “It seems you may have fallen out of the wrong side of bed with a rant of personal issues to unleash”?! That’s a laugh! 100% wrong there as well, but I guess we know how you view civil and constitutional rights and well just consideration for other people and diversity in general. Clueless and crazy.

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
1 month ago
Reply to  John

The less people like you in West Hollywood patronizing businesses, the better!

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

We know that you agree and so do others, with Lauren, on her statement. Anyone that isn’t aware of what that says about you and the others that agree with her on her statement can read my comment on her statement and they will understand what that says about you and the others that agree with her statement.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
1 month ago
Reply to  John

I’ve submitted your commentary to a professor of linguistics for help in deciphering the unintelligible gibberish it contains. Further, I’ve submitted your apparent (mis)understanding of civil and constitutional rights to a professor of law to suggest background material for you to read on what each of those means, particularly in light of Supreme Court rulings. I am being extraordinarily generous in even deigning to comment on the toxicity of anonymity occasioned by these brain-dead comments. If folks want to engage in intelligent debate, they should unmask and expose themselves. I’m one of the few with the cajones to actually do… Read more »

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

You sound absolutely preposterous. And obviously like a plant on here, with your transparent concoction of phony claims, attempted insults and imaginary list of “submissions” that you have made. “Denying to comment?” – Of course because you have nothing TO actually comment. That is all toxic in it’s very nature. All of my comments are clear, intelligible, backed up by facts and are indeed intelligent and anyone can educate themselves on these subjects and see that all for themselves. There is no toxicity in them. These are very important issues effecting people’s lives. It’s obvious that you simply don’t like… Read more »

John
John
1 month ago
Reply to  John

*are the politicians that they deserve.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
1 month ago
Reply to  John

I attach my name to my comments and am only planting myself. Further, I think any reasonable adult would conclude that my “submissions” comment was tongue in cheek. P.S. it’s “affecting people’s lives”.

John
John
29 days ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

If this is true, what you claim, that you are not a plant. Or a personal friend of Lauren Meister, then this proves all of my points also. Also, I was of course aware that most likely those comments were tongue in cheek, but what you are missing is what I was pointing out regardless – Your attempted insults that you make in your comments, and your whole spiel, and I will add, your deeply seeded need to constantly attempt to correct people’s accidental autocorrects, typos and grammar, are all obviously a collective substitute for you – A collective substitute… Read more »

WehoFan
WehoFan
1 month ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

Greeneyedguy your comments are embarrassing.

Alan Strasburg
Alan Strasburg
1 month ago
Reply to  WehoFan

And often grammatically incorrect. I think he meant to say fewer people, not less people. People are countable.

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
29 days ago
Reply to  Alan Strasburg

I’ve submitted your commentary to a professor of linguistics for help in deciphering the unintelligible gibberish it contains.”

Did you think this was clever, Alan? I’m embarrassed for you. Is this boomer humor?

William Seegmiller
William Seegmiller
29 days ago
Reply to  John

Your comment is an example of the wisdom we are missing, that Lauren so shamefully lacks. I can’t believe I was hoping to campaign for Lauren. She showed her true colors on Monday, and they are ugly.

Last edited 29 days ago by William Seegmiller
John
John
29 days ago

Thank you, William. And I agree with you about Lauren wholeheartedly as I am sure that many other voters do (enough voters to vote her out of office) so let’s all make sure that we do indeed, vote, to make sure that she is voted out of office when the next election comes around!

greeneyedguy
greeneyedguy
29 days ago

I’m sure Lauren will be so sad to hear the anti-vaxxer/Qanon conspiracy theorist, William Seegmiller is withdrawing his support from her campaign 😂

WehoFan
WehoFan
28 days ago
Reply to  greeneyedguy

Name calling + emojis.
You’re a bully.

Graham
Graham
24 days ago
Reply to  John

Re: Homelessness? Mayor: “We’re dancing as fast as we can” Which means total avoidance and ignorance to the plight and suffering Regarding vaccine mandates? My response…Remember how people fought for the men with AIDS not to be put into AIDS camps and fought for their dignity and freedom and health care? Now, that same community that survived wants to belittle, humiliate, isolate, and punish gay men that didn’t get HIV or AIDS because they are healthy and don’t feel it’s necessary or in the best interest of their health to get the vaccine. Seems like they were able to make… Read more »

Last edited 24 days ago by Graham
kab1200
kab1200
23 days ago
Reply to  Graham

Damn Graham, you are twisted. What a sick comment.

Graham
Graham
23 days ago
Reply to  John

John you are correct .. greeneyedgal and Alan are just more of the same bitter hateful gays that make great decisions like fighting to keep bath houses open during the AIDS crisis or giving out gifts baskets of lube and porn on the tables at AIDS fundraisers. Their weekends consist of believing they are being civic minded by showing up for city council supported porn stars against Trump fiascos or a pole dancers beer bust for Joe Biden event at Mickey’s where they can talk about evil Republicans and Kim Kardashian’s butt implants. You can’t take them seriously their just… Read more »

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