By Bill Hendrickson
The Glendale City Council gave Glendale Water and Power the go-ahead on Tuesday to build a biogas power plant at the Scholl Canyon landfill in the hills above Eagle Rock. The plant will convert methane from decaying garbage into electricity for Glendale.
The vote on the five-member City Council was 3-2. Voting in favor were Mayor Paula Devine and Councilmembers Vrej Agajanian and Ara Najarian. Voting against the power plant were Councilmembers Dan Brotman and Ardy Kassakhian.
The vote in favor of the power plant contradicted Glendale’s Sustainability and Planning Commissions, which had unanimously voted not to approve the project at meetings in September and October, respectively.
The vote in favor also contradicted the strong opposition expressed by some 45 people who called into the City Council meeting as well as uniform opposition to the project expressed by numerous callers at previous meetings. Six people who called in to the City Council meeting supported the project.
The vote also contradicted the opposition to the project of elected officials who represent Northeast Los Angeles including Councilmembers Kevin de Leon and Mitch O’Farrell, County Supervisor Hilda Solis and LAUSD School Board Member, Jackie Goldberg.
In addition, numerous political, environmental, community and homeowners groups have steadfastly opposed the power plant, including the East Area Progressive Democrats, the Glendale Environmental Coalition, the Glenoaks Canyon Homeowners Association, the Glendale Environmental Coalition, the Eagle Rock Association and the Linda Vista-Annandale Association of Pasadena.
The Glendale City Councilmembers who voted for the power plant generally cited the need for energy and the estimated $7 million a year that GWP projected from the production of the power.
The City Councilmembers who voted against the project generally cited the potential harm to the health and safety of residents and the environment from a power plant in a densely populated, hillside area.
Bill Hendrickson, MBA, publisher of the Boulevard Sentinel, has extensive small business management, marketing and sales experience in corporate finance and real estate development and plays a not terrible game of golf.