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Phone (818) 541-9522
Fax (818) 541-9524
Email RaymondTheatre@aol.com

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 91189
Pasadena, California 91109-1189
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 9am-6pm

Website by Southdown Enterprises?lt;/font>

 


We will continue to give the most current updates on the Raymond Theatre project on this page. If you would like to receive even more up-to-date news, please see our "Join Us" page to subscribe to our monthly e-mail newsletters.

December 25, 2005

Pasadena Heritage's Preservation Easement:
Pasadena Heritage hold's a preservation easement on the Raymond Theatre. The easement is in place to protect both the primary and secondary facades and the open space surrounding the theatre. The easement also has a clause that state’s "the property shall not be subdivided."

The City Council requested that Pasadena Heritage make a decision on whether to uphold their easement and preserve the theatre, or sign off or the preservation easement and allow the Raymond Theatre to be redeveloped into condominiums.

Pasadena Heritage was not present at Final Design Review or the Subdivision hearing to render their decision. However, Pasadena Heritage did sign off on the preservation easement that has allowed redevelopment of the Raymond Theatre to go forth.

December 9, 2005

Subdivision of Property

A hearing was held on December 7, 2005, to subdivide the Raymond Theatre property for condominium and retail space. Part of the issue during the hearings was that the new project proposed by the developers has never been evaluated for project consistency by any city decision-making board. The Pasadena City Council had previously given approval for specific uses of space and square footage. The staff report stated the project is currently 150,000 square feet; the City Council only approved 82,000 square feet. The public asked the Subdivision Committee to ensure the project's consistency before subdividing the property.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             The Subdivision Committee chose to grant the subdivision of the property and ignore the public's request to check the project for consistency with the City Council previous approvals before subdividing the property.

November 21, 2005

Violation of the Brown Act

During the appeal process, we were informed that the majority of the Design Commission had discussed the contents of their letter to the Mayor and City Council between themselves, which was a violation f the Brown Act. We alerted the City Attorney's office, and the City Attorney called a new hearing of the Design Commission.

To cure the Brown Act violation, the Design Commission wrote another letter asking the Mayor and the City Council to again evaluate the purview of the interiors. This time, the Design Commission cited in their letter to the Mayor and City Council that their action and the actions of the Mayor and City Council were in violation of the Pasadena Municipal Code. It was hoped that the Mayor and City Council would respond by further curing the Brown Act and PMC violation and hold a hearing on the issue.

The City of Pasadena chose not to respond to the letter. It's questionable whether the Design Commission's Brown Act violation has been cured entirely. We will following up with a letter to the Attorney General on this issue.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             The Zoning Administrator is now reviewing the interiors of the theatre for design and consistency and there will be no public hearings on this matter.

November 2, 2005

Purview of the Raymond Theatre interiors.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The city Design Commissioners who reviewed the proposed redevelopment project for the Raymond Theatre felt strongly that the Zoning Administrator should not conduct design review on the interiors of the Raymond Theatre. They believed that the interiors should be reviewed by the Design Commission based on CR - 1 (see below), which is a Condition of Approval.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The Design Commission wrote a letter to the Mayor and the City Council that stated their position and asked that the issue be called up for review. The Mayor responded by stating that reviewing the Raymond Theatre's interiors lies within the purview of the Zoning Administrator.

However, the Pasadena Municipal Code (PMC) requires that a request for a call to review made by the Design Commission must be voted upon by the Mayor and City Council. It is a breach of the PMC for the Mayor to respond unilaterally and circumvent a vote by the City Council. Furthermore, it is a breach of the PMC for the Design Commission to vote on an issue until they receive direction from both the Mayor and City Council.

Regardless, the Design Commission voted not to challenge the Mayor's position, thereby relegating the theatre interiors to the purview of the Zoning Administrator. Friends of the Raymond Theatre and the Forecast Foundation attempted to appeal the Design Commission's decision, along with the breach of the PMC, to the Mayor and City Council. The city of Pasadena would not accept our appeal.

October 25, 2005

Project to go before City Council:

On October 24, 2005, the Design Commission conducted Final Design Review to convert conversion of the Raymond Theatre to a mix-use housing development. The Design Commission requested that 18 revisions be made to the project. These revisions will be worked on by a subcommittee of the Design Commission.

The Design Commission was also asked to certify the Environmental and Land Use elements for the proposed project. The Design Commission agreed to approve the project, except for Mitigation Measure CR-1which states:

"The applicant shall submit plans and elevations, together with other supporting documentation, detailing the rehabilitation and restoration of the Raymond Theatre. Information shall include project specifications, materials, samples, large-scale drawings and similar items illustrating all aspects of the rehabilitation work to the historic portions of the building. Such plans will include documentation indicating how the integrity of these features will be protected during the construction phase. The Zoning Administrator and the DESIGN COMMISSION will review and approve this documentation. The City shall withhold building permits for the project until the Zoning Administration and the DESIGN COMMISSION complete their review."

The Design Commission has appealed the project to the City Council to ask if CR-1 allows them to review the protected interior spaces of the Raymond Theatre. The Pasadena City Attorney has stated that the only person to conduct design review on the interiors of the Raymond is the Zoning Hearing Officer, who is not an architect. The City Council will make the final decision on this matter.
Keep posted to our website for the date of the City Council hearing.

October 24, 2005

The project to convert the Raymond Theatre to a mixed-use housing project will go before the Design Commission for review. If the project passes, 10 days later building permits will be issued and demolition will start. We ask the public to please attend this important hearing. As soon as the city lets us know the location and time, it will be posted on our website. If you need talking points for the hearing, please contact us at: RaymondTheatre@aol.com  We hope to see you at the final hearing.

Hearing Information:

Date: October 24, 2005

Place: All Saints Church, Sweetland Hall 132 North Euclid Avenue Pasadena, California 91101-1796 (Corner of Holly and Euclid near City Hall, entrance is on Euclid)

Time: 6:00 pm. Best arrival time: 7:00 pm

September 1, 2005

The project is currently in 50% Review and should go to Final Design Review during the month of September. After Final Design Review has commenced, 10 days later building permits may be issued and demolition of the Raymond Theatre will begin. Currently we are seeking volunteers to help us with fundraisers, celebrity media conferences and organization of rallies. If you would like to volunteer your time, please contact us at RaymondTheatre@aol.com Please write us, or check the City of Pasadena website under the Design Commission for future hearing dates

August 15, 2005

The Raymond Theatre is now in it's final hour. Our most critical need is to raise money to legally defend the Raymond Theatre. If you would like to make a donation you can do so by mail:

Friends of the Raymond Theatre
P.O. Box 91189
Pasadena, CA 91109 -1189

or online by Pay Pal.


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July 11, 2005

AJB Enterprises proposed their latest design plan before the Design Commission on July 11th. 

The project came back with more design issues that the previous proposals.  Certain Design Commissioners felt the project should move past Conceptual Design Review to 50%, only because the developer was on a timeline and they thought AJB was working hard.  Others felt the project was nowhere near ready to pass Conceptual Design Review.

The Design Commission passed the project to 50% review with no commitment as to what the design of the new building on the Raymond Theatre parking lot was going to look like.  There are no votes in 50% review; it's an advisory review only.  The public is allowed to comment.  Please check our website for future hearing dates.

At the hearing, a Principal Planner with the City of Pasadena spoke to the issue of ongoing demolition or alteration of the Raymond Theatre.  Hear his comment

July 6, 2005

The developers started interior demolition of the Raymond Theatre on July 4, 2005, with no demolition permit.  Despite numerous calls to the several City departments, including Code Enforcement, Planning and Development, Zoning and Historic Preservation, no return calls have been returned to date.  Our Attorney has issued a warning to the City of Pasadena to stop all demolition and/or alteration of the inside of the Raymond Theatre and requested copies of all building permits and "stop work orders" to evaluate if the AJB had permits to demolish or alter the interior of the theatre.

As of July 7, 2005, we spoke with Yolanda Flores and she stated no building permit had been issued to start demolition.  City Council approvals for the developers project state that "no building permits are to be issued until Final Design Review has been granted."  The project is still in Conceptual Design Review.

We ask the community to keep an eye out on the Raymond Theatre.  If anyone sees any work is being done illegally, please contact us immediately at: (8180 541-9522

July 9, 2005

Richard Becker is produced an encore performance of The Bonnie Delight Revue to help benefit Friends of the Raymond Theatre.  The show included a mid-show auction to benefit the historic Raymond Theatre. A great deal of money was raised to help continue efforts to preserve the Raymond Theatre. We thank Richard Becker for producing a second fundraiser to help raise money for the Raymond Theatre.

June 29, 2005

AJB Enterprises unveiled their revised plans for the Raymond Theatre and the adjoining parking lot. Overall, the Design Commissioners did not like the new plans, nor did the community.  The Design Commissioners asked for revisions and gave suggestions for changes.  The project did not pass Conceptual Design Review.

HEARING DATE:

DATE:  Wednesday, July 11, 2005

START TIME: 6:30 P.M.

PLACE:  Pasadena Conference Center Building 

(next to Pasadena Civic Auditorium) 

300 East Green Street, Room 211, Pasadena

June 6, 2005

AJB Enterprises unveiled their new plans before the Design Commission by F & A Architects.  The City staff recommended the Design Commission disregard that the new project has major modifications.

They asked the Design Commission focus on 7 design issues from a previous (2004) version of the project by the architects Togawa and Smith.  Which does not relate in ANY way to the new project by F & A Architects.  The City recommend the Design Commission vote these 7 items are consistent with CEQA, while not addressing if the new project is compliant with City Council approvals, mitigation measures or CEQA.

The City stated in the staff report, that they do not want to penalize AJB for having a proposed a flawed project which could not be built as designed, so they picked a few design issues from a design concept that that no longer exists and used them to deem the project had only minor modifications.

This way, AJB would not have allow the public or the City to review the new plans in their entirely as required by law.  The City could deem the project only required minor modifications.  Minor Modifications do not require original decision maker approval. 

The Design Commission vote in favor of this scheme.  As the project stands now there has been no review of interiors of exterior of the Raymond Theatre, no review to see if the project is compliant with City Council approvals, mitigation measures or CEQA.

The Design Commission did not like the new changes to the building; they gave a checklist of suggested revisions.  The project did not pass Conceptual Design Review.

HEARING DATE:

DATE:  Wednesday, June 29, 2005

START TIME: 6:30 P.M.

PLACE:  Pasadena Conference Center Building 

(next to Pasadena Civic Auditorium) 

300 East Green Street, Room 211, Pasadena

May 18, 2005

Excerpts from the Pasadena Weekly Article dated May 18, 2005

"Payback time"

Pasadena officials could face misdemeanor convictions and heavy fines for alleged 'pay-to-play' under Supreme Court-backed anti-corruption initiative.

By Joe Piasecki

Pasadena City Councilman Chris Holden and Board of Education member Esteban "Steve" Lizardo have a price on their heads.

Each is in violation of Measure B, an anti-corruption initiative that makes it a crime for Pasadena public officials to accept campaign contributions from those whom their votes have benefited - and offers cash rewards to citizens who prosecute them.

Though the city has repeatedly challenged the measure as an unconstitutional restriction of political speech, the California Supreme Court on April 27 upheld the 2001 voter-approved ballot initiative by denying the city's petition for review.

"Pasadena has no other legal options. They have to enforce Measure B," said consumer advocate Carmen Balber, a spokeswoman for initiative authors the Oaks Project, which operates under the Ralph Nader-backed Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights.

More than $1,000 in reward money awaits any citizen who successfully sues a city leader over alleged violations of the measure, violations which currently total thousands of dollars in gifts from some of the area's wealthiest men to city officials who have supported their business causes.

Under Measure B, offenders can be fined up to five times the amount of their violation and, in particularly flagrant or repeat offenses, can be convicted of a misdemeanor or barred from public office.

Holden's numerous alleged violations of at least $2,100 in campaign gifts came less than a year after he cast deciding votes on the fate of the Raymond Theatre and changed city development rules to accommodate a massive downtown development for one of the world's richest men. 

"Holden should come forth quickly with information in his defense, or otherwise we have to assume it뭩 pay-to-play," said San Gabriel Valley open government activist Rich McKee.

"It's this kind of thing that gives public agencies a black eye," he said.

Now, thanks to the Supreme Court, anyone who would sue Holden over Measure B violations would stand to recover attorneys' fees and profit up to 10 percent of the fines assessed against him, which could be as high as $10,500.

But that's not all. Also according to campaign finance records, Holden also received $100 from Hahn & Hahn attorney R. Scott Jenkins, who represented Munger and his Montana projects before the council.

Just two days after receiving the Jenkins and MS contributions, Holden took $500 from Buchanan-Symonds,

listed owners of the embattled Raymond Theatre, and another $500 from the Gene Buchanan-headed AJB Enterprises.

In May 2004, Holden moved that the city adopt a concept design review for converting the historic theater into

luxury apartments, and then cast the deciding vote for its approval.

"That's darn ridiculous," said Buchanan, who was not familiar with provisions of the measure, and now feels it violates his rights to back political candidates.

"I give money to all of them. Now nobody can vote?" he asked before it was explained only donations made after a vote are subject to the measure.

"That's no favor to me," he said of the Raymond Theatre vote. "He's just doing his job as a council person. He voted what was code. I wasn't doing anything that wasn't according to code. ...That means anybody who does any business in the city, the council can't take anything from him?"

Incidentally, Holden contributor Jenkins also represented Buchanan before the City Council Measure B was approved by more than 60 percent of Pasadena voters in March 2001. A similar measure, Prop LL, was approved in 2000 by Santa Monica voters.

After the 2001 election, Pasadena city officials tried to scrub the Measure B by refusing to report election results to the state.

Many Pasadena City Council members have said they fear implementation of the initiative would discourage public participation in government, and have expressed some confusion about what actually amounts to a violation.

Though allegedly having violated Measure B twice, Lizardo remains nonetheless a proponent of the law, which no other city officials have vocally supported.

I think that our elected officials' motives should not be subject to question. If some contributions call those into question, they should be returned so that there is no question," he said. "Even without this measure we must be aboveboard at all times."

May 20, 2005

AJB Enterprises has filed for Design Review.  The City staff report states "the project could not be built as designed" therefore the developer was required to make major modifications to the project.  Major modifications to a project require that a new application be filed original City decision maker approval.  The project is therefore required to be heard in front of the Zoning Hearing Officer or the City Council.

The new project breeches prior City Council approvals, mitigation measures and new significant alterations are being made to the theatre with no requirement for supplemental CEQA review.  We ask the public to attend this important hearing.

HEARING DATE:

DATE:  Wednesday, June 6, 2005

START TIME: 6:30 P.M.

PLACE:  Pasadena Conference Center Building 

(next to Pasadena Civic Auditorium) 

300 East Green Street, Room 211, Pasadena

April 4, 2005

The rummage sale was a huge success!  Two days before the sale, people were calling nonstop and dropping by the location to ask about the sale.  At 5am people started arriving.  By 9am there was a crowd of 50 people waiting to get in.  It took three people to service the lines of people wanting to buy items.  We raised a significant amount of money for the Raymond Theatre.  Celebrities, Yanni and Fritz Coleman even came by our sale!  Thanks to everyone who helped make this rummage sale a success.

March 16, 2005

The Raymond Theatre Rummage Sale is planned for Saturday and Sunday, April 2nd and 3rd, from 9am to 4pm daily.  There will be antiques, collectibles, hundreds of LP's, 45's, cassettes, CD's, DVD's, movie and music collectibles, books, office supplies, computers, electronics, vintage clothing and jewelry, garden tools, stamps, household items, glassware, kitchenware, children's item's, sports and exercise equipment and much, much more.  The sale will be held at Rock Castle Drive, La Canada-Flintridge CA.  No early birds!

March 15, 2005

The Conditional Use Perfect for the developers project has expired.  Friends of the Raymond Theatre and the Forecast Foundation personally went to the City and requested to see the extensions for 2002 and 2003.  The City found no extensions on file.  To ensure a building permit does not run out, work on a project must commence.

The City stated, "They had to find a way to help the developer keep his CUP permit, so issued a building permit to start renovation and structural work on the Raymond Theatre."  The City Council final approvals for this project state that no demolition or alternation of the Raymond Theatre is to occur, until after Final Design Review and building permits are issue.  The project has not started Design Review.

Public participation was completely eliminated and to date nobody other than Pasadena Heritage, the City and the developer know what the facade of the Raymond Theatre will look like when it's complete.  The facade of the Raymond Theatre is now under construction and the marquee has been removed from the theatre.

March 6, 2005

The fundraiser for the Bonnie Delight Revue was a hit!  The event was standing room only.  We raised a significant about of money for the Raymond Theatre and a good time was had by all!  Thank you Richard Becker and Miss Bonnie Delight for all your hard work on putting together a spectacular fundraiser for the Raymond Theatre.

February 11, 2005

Mark your calendars early!  March 5, the Bonnie Delight Revue is staging an old-fashioned variety show with a modern day twist!  Proceeds from this show go to help save Pasadena's historic Raymond Theatre!  The show is being held at the California Institute of Abnormal Arts ( www.ciabnormalarts.com ) in North Hollywood. Doors open at 8pm, show starts at 9pm. Tickets are $15 at the door. The show features Miss Bonnie Delight, and will be emceed by baggy-pants comedian Shecky Greenblatt (Scott Whitesell), ably assisted by comic Charlie Singer (Hal Cartrett) and stage Mom Mamie Delight (Phyllis Harlow).

There will be an incredible lineup of acts including:

The fan dance of Eliza Bane!

The witty magic of Doug Barat!

Comedy with Tarun Shetty!

The lounge song stylings of Tony Bisbee Junior!

Mother and daughter comedy team Coco and Penny!

The lovely Victoria Lane!

What뭩 cooking with Sweet Kellianne!

The amazing Robin Coleman! 

The hypnotic magic of Mark Prines!

The bagpipe extravaganza of Orion McCabe!

After the show, stay for our special added guest, DJ Steve Boyett, spinning the best in techno and industrial music for your dancing and listening pleasure!

Proceeds from this show go towards helping save Pasadena's Historic Raymond Theatre

DATE: March 5, 2005

PLACE:  C.I.A ( www.ciabnormalarts.com )

11334 Burbank Blvd., North Hollywood

TIME: Doors open at 8:00 pm. - Show starts 9:00 pm

TICKETS: $15 at the door.

This event produced by Richard Becker for Friends of the Raymond Theatre.

January 9, 2005

Big news!  Foothill Records is La Canada-Flintridge has donated over $10,000 worth of rare records, CD's, video's DVD's and rare movie and music memorabilia.  People from all over LA are giving us items to sell at rummage sale.  The more items we have, the more money we can raise! Please contact us if you have items you would like to donate.

December 15, 2005

We have a huge garage sale planned for April 4, 2005.  We are seeking donations; we will accept anything that has a value of over $5.  If you would like to donate items for our sale, please contact us.

October 4, 2004

A buyer has been found for the theatre, the owner refused the sale.  Friends of the Raymond Theatre are working on fundraising and have started work on a big rummage sale and a variety show for early next 2005.

September 19, 2004

The proposed project to convert the Raymond Theatre to mixed-use housing project is currently on hold.  Friends of the Raymond Theatre are continuing our fundraising efforts because we know further legal defense of the theatre will be necessary.

August, 18 2004

Friends of the Raymond Theatre have filed a second lawsuit against AJB Enterprises and the City of Pasadena.  The lawsuit alleges that changes to the project have caused significant new impacts to the Raymond Theatre, which have not been evaluated by CEQA.  Also, changes have been made to the project, which are not consistent with the original City Council approvals.

July 12, 2004

We have raised money in the nick of time to file our second lawsuit.  Thanks to everyone who helped us achieve our goal.

June 20, 2004

Friends of the Raymond Theatre are working hard to raise money to file a second lawsuit.  We ask the public for their continued support.  Please visit our "donate" link and see how you can help!

June 8, 2004

We disagree with the Pasadena City Councils decision that the new project proposed by the Buchanan /Perkins Limited Partnership is consistent with approvals given by the City Council in 2002. Our single most important need is donations so that we may continue our efforts to save the Raymond Theatre.

May 17, 2004

The City Council continued the May 3 discussions on how a project is deemed consistent with original approvals. The Council also conducted a Conceptual Design Review. As with all Raymond Theatre hearings, there was a standing room only crowd in attendance. Mayor Bogaard reminded the City Council that the hearing had been classified as "de novo," meaning that the issues of both consistency and design could be addressed by the public and the Council. However, Councilman Chris Holden tried several times to limit the scope of the hearing to approving the skylights and windows for the auditorium space, approving that the brick facade would be returned to its original cream color ONLY if deemed feasible, and that Pasadena Heritage would be allowed to sign off on the preservation easements at final Design Review or during construction. These were the three issues the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership needed approval on in order to move forward with their project. Mayor Bogaard, Councilman Tyler and Councilman Little voted that the project was not consistent with original approvals. All other Council members voted in favor. The City approved Conceptual Design Review and deemed the project consistent with their 2002 approvals.

May 3, 2004

The City Council held a public meeting using the Raymond Theatre as an example of how the City Council determines if a project is consistent with original approvals. The City Council discussed the matter in detail, yet when it came time for the public to give testimony, several Council members left the room. Because city business cannot be conducted in the absence of a quorum, it was determined that public comment could not be heard.

April 29, 2004

Friends of the Raymond Theatre won a preservation award from the California Preservation Foundation for exemplary work in the field of historic preservation.

April 19, 2004

Councilman Holden's motion to call up the Design Commission's decision was seconded. The matter will be on included on the May 17 agenda as a Public Hearing.

April 13, 2004

A day before the results of the Design Review hearing were published, Councilman Chris Holden appealed the decision of the Conceptual Design Review process to the City Council.

April 12, 2004

At the March 15 hearing, the Design Commission requested that the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership, owners and developers of the Raymond Theatre, come back before the Commission with the revisions necessary to continue Conceptual Design Review of their project. No revisions were made and the Buchanan's stated that they would take the project to the City Council where they would get approval. The Design Commission found the project remained inconsistent with the original approvals made by the City Council in 2002. Some of the inconsistencies include: the project has changed from apartments to condos; the total number of available units has decreased, no longer meeting the need for increased affordable housing in Pasadena, which was the basis of why this project was approved by the City Council. Also, the number of stories to be built in the theatre's interior has increased from six to seven stories, creating a greater overall impact on the theatre. Additionally, the commercial square footage increased by 3,924 square feet; retail sq. ft. by 3,104 square feet; and the residential space increased by 799 square feet. While the project increased in square footage, the has parking decreased. The Conditions of Approval for inclusionary housing and to market the theatre for sale for four months were also not met. The City also specifically stated that the protected theatre space (between front of stage and front of balcony) would be marketed for sale for theatre use, or used as a unique commercial or retail space. Before adhering to the Conditions of Approval to market the theatre space for sale, the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership sought approval to cut 12 louvered skylights and windows into the auditorium space and use the area as an atrium for apartments. This is a breech of the Conditions of Approval as set forth by the City Council. This new change also warrants further environmental review to determine the effects of elements such as air and light would have on the historic auditorium. The Design Commission required a total 39 revisions be made to the design of the project. Also changing the project from apartments to condos would require both the Raymond Theatre and its adjoining parking lot to be subdivided. Pasadena Heritage's historic preservation easement specifically states that subdividing the property is not allowed. Ultimately, the proposed redevelopment of the Raymond Theatre was rejected a second time by the Design Commission and the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership was again asked to make revisions. Additionally, the Design Commission also asked the Commission chair to write a letter to the City Council to express the Commission's concern over the overall inconsistencies with what Council approved in 2002.

March 15, 2004

The Design Commissioners found that the project originally approved by the Pasadena City Council in 2002 was not the same project the developer proposed at tonight's hearing. After five hours of developer presentations, debate, and public comment, the Design Commission found numerous mistakes and issues with the developers plans and requested revisions be made. The hearing was continued to April 12, 2004.

February 12, 2004

In spite of an imminent appellate court ruling, the owners of the Raymond Theatre have filed for Conceptual Design Review. Their project proposes to gut the Raymond Theatre and convert it to an apartment/retail/office building. A hearing before the Design Commission is scheduled for March 15, 2004. A hearing before the Design Commission is scheduled for March 15, 2004. The City of Pasadena expects record-breaking crowds to assemble in defense of the Raymond Theatre, and have moved the March 15 public hearing from City Council chambers to the Pasadena Conference Center Building (next to the Civic Auditorium) at 300 E. Green Street, Room 211. The hearing will begin at 6 p.m.

May 27, 2003

On May 27, 2003, Friends of the Raymond Theatre and the Sage Council filed a write of mandate to the appellate courts. The appellate courts will decide the final fate of the Raymond Theatre this year. The Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership filed a Motion for Attorney's fees. They are asking us to pay approximately $114,000 in Attorney fees, which we will be challenging in the courts. July 2, 2003 The court ruled that Friends of the Raymond Theatre were not liable to pay $114,000 in Attorney fee's to the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership. August 12, 2003 Friends of the Raymond Theatre made an attempt to settle the appellate court case with the Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership. We asked to allow a specified amount of time to market and sell the Raymond Theatre. After months of negotiations, the Buchanan's set an unreasonable price and terms for a sale. The Buchanan/Perkins Limited Partnership stated if we did not accept their offer to drop the lawsuit and sell the theatre on their terms, that they would start construction before the appellate courts reached a decision. Friends of the Raymond Theatre chose to not accept the settlement and to retain our legal rights to continue protection of the Raymond Theatre.

March 8, 2003

On March 7, 2002, LA Superior Court Judge Dzintra I. Janavs ruled that the City of Pasadena acted lawfully in granting approval to allow redevelopment of the Raymond Theatre into an apartment/retail complex. Friends of the Raymond Theatre have till May 27, 2003 to made a decision to appeal the case to the appellate courts. Please check back with us for updates.

February 28, 2003

On February 11, 2003, Judge Dzintra Janavs postponed the Raymond Theatre court date to March 7, 2003.

The Judge requested all Attorneys read the case of San Franciscans Upholding the Downtown Plan v. City of San Francisco (Forest City Development, Inc.) (2002) 102 Cal. App. 4th 656; published October 2, 2002.

Below are notes (partly paraphrased) on the proceedings.

LA Superior Court Judge Dzintra I. Janavs: "I have read the briefs and the record. I don't see anyone citing [San Franciscans Upholding the Downtown Plan v. City of San Francisco (Forest City Development, Inc.) (2002) 102 Cal.App.4th 656; published October 2, 2002]. That case, and this (Raymond Theatre, both involve CEQA and have other parallels, and are similar factually. In the San Francisco case, the historical building is 'The Emporium,' which was the seat of the California Supreme Court for 10 years. Like your case, it had a long history of development plans, modifications, and feasibility studies. You should all be familiar with the case. Has anyone here read it? You should, and be prepared to discuss it. One difference is that your case (Forecast) has a 'facade easement' or 'open space easement,' depending on which side you're on. Let's put this over until the 4th or 5th of March"

Discussion of schedule with Attorneys: Date is reschedule for March 7, 2003.

Attorney William Garr (developers Attorney) asks: "Do we need to brief you on this case, and whether it is distinguished [different] or not?"

Judge: "No more briefing, I have enough papers, just come prepared".

Both cases continued to March 7, 2003, at 9:30 a.m.

We encourage the public to attend the court date and show your support for the Raymond Theatre.

When: March 7, 2002
Where: Los Angeles County Courthouse
111 North Hill Street, Los Angeles,
Dept. 85
9:30 am.

February 4, 2003

The court date for the Raymond Theatre is scheduled for February 11th, 2003 at the Los Angeles County Courthouse, 111 North Hill Street, Los Angeles, Dept. 85 at 9:30 am. The Judge is Honorable Dzintra Janavs. Parking is available around the courthouse. The public is invited and we encourage those who support preservation of the Raymond Theatre to please attend. On this date, a decision will be made on if Raymond Theatre will be preserved or allowed to be redeveloped into an apartment/retail complex. If you need further directions to the courthouse, please e-mail us at: RaymondTheatre@aol.com

December 18, 2002

We are asking all our supporters and everyone who visits our website to help us by asking your friends, family, neighborhood associations, church and social groups to join our campaign to help preserve The Raymond Theatre. You can join our cause by e-mailing: RaymondTheatre@aol.com

November 19, 2002

We have been working very hard on fundraising over the past few months. Friends of the Raymond Theatre is still in need of donations. Our legal brief was filed in November 2002 and we will be filing our final reply brief in January 2003. A court date has been set for The Raymond Theatre in Los Angeles Superior Court, on February 11, 2003 at 9:30 p.m., Dept. 85.

April 14, 2002

We are looking for volunteers to help us with the many tasks this project requires. We need help with public relations, press, flyer distribution, fundraising, event coordination, raffle sales, eBay auctions and much more. If you would like volunteer your time, please e-mail us at: RaymondTheatre@aol.com

March 1, 2002

Friends of the Raymond Theatre has started a campaign to raise funds to pay for legal costs, advocacy efforts, legal fees and assist with the many daily operating expenses this project requires. A donation of any amount will help us to continue our 16-year preservation effort to see Pasadena's historic Raymond Theatre preserved and revitalized.

February 7, 2002

On February 7, Friends of the Raymond Theatre filed a lawsuit against the City of Pasadena for their decision to allow redevelopment of the Raymond Theatre and it's adjoining parking lot based on violations of the state California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

CEQA law protects both the environment, endangered species, as well as historic buildings and places. Under state law, if the City had one alternative that was feasible to preserve the Raymond Theatre or lessen the impact on this historic structure, the City must choose this option under law. Clearly the City Council did have an option to preserve the Raymond Theatre and chose to override those considerations.

Friends of the Raymond Theatre decided to file the lawsuit with another Pasadena based non-profit organization named the Sage Council. The Sage Council has offices on Raymond Avenue in Pasadena, CA and Carthage, NC.

Over the years, the Pasadena Sage Council has opposed the Raymond Theatre redevelopment project during hearings and has provided their expert guidance to Friends of the Raymond Theatre on CEQA-related legal issues.

Over the past decade, the Sage Council has successfully litigated numerous Southern California development projects at the federal level and also against the U.S. Department of the Interior.

The Sage Council offered to allow us to become a "member group" which will enable Friends of the Raymond Theatre to receive tax deductible donations, support and guidance, attorney referrals and legal review.

We choose to become co-defendants on the legal suit against the City of Pasadena so our combined expertise will help us build a strong team of experts to help defend The Raymond Theatre as we move through the legal process.

The Law Office of Craig Sherman, San Diego, CA has been hired by Friends of the Raymond Theatre and The Sage Council.

Gina Zamparelli
Executive Director
Friends of the Raymond Theatre
RaymondTheatre@aol.com

www.raymondtheatre.com 

Leeona Klippstein
Executive Director
Spirit of the Sage Council
leeona@sagecouncil.com

www.sagecouncil.com

January 2002

The Pasadena City Council voted to allow conversion of the Raymond Theatre to an apartment/retail complex. The plans call for building apartments in what is now the Raymond Theatre's stage and stage house, the main auditorium would be converted to retail space and the balcony would house several floors of office space. A large apartment building would be built on the Raymond Theatre's adjoining parking lot.

1989 - January 2002

Over the years, Friends of the Raymond Theatre have successfully stopped conversion of the Raymond Theatre to an office building and modernized nightclub. We are currently working to protect the Raymond Theatre from conversion to an apartment/retail complex. After 16 years of successfully winning hearings, the Pasadena City Council voted in favor of redevelopment in January 2002.