Yes, I know there is real news out there that deserves, indeed demands, my attention and commentary, but I’m also a dedicated dog person, and cat and reluctant parrot person, too, so allow me some latitude.
So this week for City Observed on public radio 99.1 KBU and select websites, the serial drama of the fate of the Trancas Canyon Dog Park continues, as the Malibu burgeoning bureaucracy does what it does best: postpone any actual improvement as it moves the item slowly between the in and out baskets on their desks.
If you recall, in the last episode of the continuing drama, or is it a farce, of the Malibu City Hall foibles starring my willful Welsh speaking aging Corgi, Bobby the Bad, our canine hero was complaining about the raw surface conditions of the dog park.
They were abusing his paws, and those of dozens other dogs who visit the park, though not having the vocal chords of Bobby, they were not as shrill in their canine cursing of a recalcitrant City Hall that the pets and their owners remember had promised the resurfacing.
But the bids came in well above the $80,000 that had been budgeted, indeed from $132,000 to over $300,000, to replace the current decomposed granite (DG) surface. The reason for the high bids was said to be the limited vehicle access to the park , one of a number of design flaws in the original design, along with using the cheapest DG.
Cited for this rejection also was that not enough people had complained about the condition, as if there is some magic number before the city acts, or do there have to be complaints when a condition is so evident.
It’s a problem when you have a neophyte city government that plays it cards close to its chest, and is quick to tell you why something can’t be done, rather than how it can.
So for the future there will be no resurfacing of the raw dog park surface, and the pets will just have to try to stoically ignore the pain as they do now while playfully romping.
However, to be sure the city did compose a cautious e mail in which it recognizes that there is a constituency that uses the park.
Perhaps if the city desk jockeys actually visited the parks to review the issue with real people and their pets, they would not have to create an annoying SurveyMonkey poll, as it is wont to do when postponing confrontation with actual taxpayers.
You know them, the minority of the modest 13,000 residents who actually live in Malibu, instead of just partying here on weekends, or rent their house out legally or not, as an air n b, hoping that it will keep appreciating as the smiling realtor promised it would.
Who worries about dog parks anyway, dogs don’t vote, nor do many of their owners show any inclination to get involved in civic matters.
Not that they don’t care, most who live here do, but many unfortunately have been turned off or turned away by a City Hall, with its long, sad history of imperious leadership.
Welcome to small town government in, I fear, a failing democracy, for people and dogs. .