A lifelong Malibu resident, residential real estate agent Andy Lyon is running for Malibu City Council again after losing out on a seat in 2012. Running on a slate platform with Hamish Patterson, Lyon believes the city is on the wrong track toward an influx of development and major traffic increases. Lyon was also a vocal activist during the controversial Malibu Lagoon reconfiguration project.
Do you think Malibu should have its own school district?
Yeah, if it works out for everybody. I think the problem is the information getting to people... this was an issue last time we ran two years ago and we’re no closer to having separation.
...I just think if I was looking at what’s more important right now, I would say dealing with the high school toxins.
Do you see any downside right now for district separation?
I think it’s a financial thing... It’s a tough situation and if it was such a great deal I guess it would’ve already happened. We’re talking about it for another election. In two years it’ll still be an issue. Why is it the city council, if this is a city council issue and we’re being asked about this, why hasn’t the city council done anything to put money toward independent study or getting anything out there?
If you’re elected to city council, what role would you want to play or do you believe the city council should play in helping address the environmental situation at the high school?
They have to have independent reviews, completely transparent independent reviews of it. If they have to fund it, they have to put some money, the city has to get involved and get the information out. It seems like nothing is really coming from the city at all and I don’t know why that is.
So you would propose hiring an independent consultant?
Yeah, somebody to oversee other than the company doing the work or the Santa Monica school telling you that they’re doing OK, not to worry. That’s the worst thing, is having somebody do that work or somebody that’s paying for it that knows they’re in trouble, telling you ‘don’t worry.’ They have to step up. I would have to say that would be as far as any of the school issues, that way outweighs the separation right now.
What was your political call to action?
It was the lagoon [2012 reconfiguration project]. That was definitely it... All it needed was maintenance and the right placement. I just saw that these guys were going to do this project, and when I got wind of it, because it was noticed really weird....I knew that they were wrong, I knew that it was not going to work, I knew it was a big waste of money. They were just going to do the same thing and worse, which it is. If you go down there now it’s worse, nothing’s grown back. It’s a disaster.
[The city] told us over and over, and after it was done it was like, ‘oh, well we did have control over the FEMA floodplain’ and the city could have totally stopped the project.
In the next four years, what single issue do you think needs to be addressed and what would you do about it?
The overdevelopment in the civic center and the wastewater treatment and the sewer, all the stuff that we’ve been—all this new traffic onto the highway, the safety of the highway. Just the gridlock that comes with that... and the size of the properties. It’s not like ‘no growth,’ it’s just got to be a lot better traffic studies. You can’t move around now, and I see like when they decide they’re going to put a sewer right across the street from my kid’s elementary school. To me, that’s the linchpin...The traffic, the safety of the highways, the safety of any kind of emergency. If everybody’s jammed in here, we overuse PCH, the infrastructure, the water coming in going out.
Why Andy Lyon? Why not stick with the incumbents?
Believe me, if I thought that I could trust these guys with Malibu, I would say go for it, but why Andy Lyon? Because I’m the kind of guy that’s not going to sit back and take the sides of — I’m not a politician....Myself and Hamish are people there to stand up for residents. We’re not standing up for developers.