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Tue Sep 3, 2013, 01:51 PM

 

Anthony Ciani Roils Romney Mansion Plans

Last edited Tue Sep 3, 2013, 03:04 PM - Edit history (1)

Every so often a battle arises akin to David v Goliath that is endearing. Such is the case of Architect Anthony Ciani and his combat with elitist Mitt Romney. Mr Ciani bought the last remnant of the extant sand dunes and built on that. It is 340 Dunemere. Romney's house was built ca. 1936 a 100 feet west of Ciani's house which was built in 1975. Not only is Mitt Romney intending to demolish a good home to build his mansion upon high, the power monger is claiming city property as his own - just because he feels like it.


Anthony Ciani says that ain't right!

Unless you are getting paid by the ruthless Robber Baron Mitt Romney, chances are you don't like him. Though Mitt's campaign may have played "etch-a-sketch" and "flip flop" obfuscation efforts by his Bain Capital 800 radio stations (owning such tools as Rush Limbaugh); the rest of U.S. know a pathological bull {c}hitter when we hear one. Those who have followed this blogger's battle with Pitten's are also well aware I call Mitt a crook. This is because he is. (Moe on that very soon - I've got a HUGE surprise coming) It is a simple matter of reality that Mitt Romney lives upon a different plane of existence than you or I. Quite frankly, Romney is above the Law. He lives on the planet of money, power & might make right.

But even Al Capone had his comeuppance one day, coincidentally for tax evasion - (apropos don't cha know).

This blogger spoke at length to Tony Ciani on the issues, mainly because it was my fiduciary duty to forewarn Mr. Ciani of the full power, might and evil nature of the Goliath Romney that Tony Ciani was seeking to take on in a full administrative (and possibly court) process. Tony Ciani is now fully aware of the real Romney he is facing and says he doesn't care; he's in this battle because it is the right thing to do. In stating such, Mr. Ciani earned my admiration.

Good for you Tony Ciani!

It is not going to be easy for Ciani v Romney, as Mitt's above the law status, his ability to make "deals" and the amount of money, legal weight and other forces he can thrust upon you - can be overpowering. Be that as it may, Ciani is pushing forward and has already won a partial victory. The Coastal Commission appeared to be well on their way to rubber stamping Mitt Romney's request; but Ciani is much more familiar with that process than Romney and his staff. But Mr. Ciani appealledthe process and that was scheduled to be heard in Eureka, California on September 11, 2013. Ciani's efforts forced Romney to "postpone" the hearing just a few days ago. (See Coastal Commission update items 19 b. (here)

and that is one WIN for Tony Ciani.

The goal is simply to get the Coastal Commission to have a "full" review of Mitt Romney's requests. Tony Ciani is confident that - once a full debate upon the merits occurs - Mitt Romney is going to be disappointed. As an example of what is to come, the local news is reporting on the story (somewhat) and appears to be more interested in pandering to Romney, than raising the issues of a newbie power monger throwing his weight around in inconsiderate fashion. (See the San Diego Business Daily story "New Romney Mansion Coming to Coastal Commission Soon"

Here, in Tony Ciani's email to me, is the back story and the real issues at hand;

I will be sending you copies of my Appeal Form and supplemental letters supporting the reasons for my appeal. There's a lot of stuff. There are several key issues, but it is complex. Here is a Background:

The project is located on the beach front. It is a 0.25 mile long pocket sandy beach between two rocky points. The sand fluctuates as much as 30 feet annually, summer to winter. Some times all of the sand is transported offshore by back-to-back storms. The largest 20 foot plus waves can "close out" offshore the entire point to point.

The area was first subdivided in 1902. It was romantically called "Neptunia" (an era when the gods appealed to the Bohemian human spirit.) The part of the subdivision Romney's lot is on was NOY subdivided in 1902 and was sand dunes left open, called "Playas de las Arenas." It was sold, then sold again in 1921 to a guy from New York (wouldn't you know.) who immediately built on part of the dunes, not on one of the subdivided numbered lots on the number blocks. His name was Phillip Barber, and he continued to randomly build houses or sell reas of the dunes for others to build on (Folklore has it, that he gambled and when he lost he would trade a piece of the dunes for his debt....he went bankrupt, but left a beautiful house that was eventually bought by Cliff Roberston who as a kid delivering papers there, dreamed of owning it.. The tract of land, now all houses is known as the (exclusive) "Barber Tract."

Like Cliff, I also delivered papers in the Barber Tract (from 1956 - 60.) When I graduated from LJHS I became a lifeguard and worked my way through college. I am very familiar with the area and the beaches. To complete the picture: I married, joined the Coast Guard, after which, I came back to apprentice for local architects commencing in 1970, just when the environmental laws were coming on line. I fell in love with the notion of citizen participation to help carry out those laws; one was the California Coastal Act (CA), which was enacted as a statewide initiative in 1972. At that point, I was somewhat put off by what architects were designing, and more interested in protecting the ocean, land and resources, and the public's enjoyment of them. My wife and I were very lucky to buy the last lot (then known as "The Dune." since it was all that was left) The woman who owned it wanted us to have it despite higher all cash offers; we got it. When we realized that it was treasured, I started a petition to create a "Special Assessment District" but we were the only ones willing to contribute to it, so we built our house there. We lived there from 1975 to March 2012, and moved to Pacific Grove.


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Then Tony Ciani gave me a Summary of the technical Issues:

1) Romney's team is using the sandy beach to inflate the size of his house which would be three to four times bigger than the average size of houses in the neighborhood (you will see my analysis of sizes.)

2) The beach appears to belong to the City not Romney. The current City Engineering Maps show "Neptune Place" (a paper street" west of his property extending north a couple of blocks. That is supported by the land use plan maps of the beaches.

3) Even if 1 and 2 above were not the case, Romney's team used a Mean High Tide Line (MHTL) dating back to the 30s, and according to his surveyor, was certified by the City in 1996. BUT, the law, at least in California, is that the MHTL is where it is on any one day, to be measured based upon data from the most recent 18.5 years. At the least, Romney's MHTL is 17 years out of date, and the State Lands Commission has jurisdiction over the Public Domain and determines where the MHTL is, not Romney.

4) 1, 2, 3, and 4 are important because they go to the Public's Rights (you know the little guys family who can't afford a front row seat 24/7, 365 days a year, watching the ocean and every sunset. Joe California usually has a drive, traffic and parking not to mention loading the car, to go to the beach; how many folks can stay for sunset dinner on the beach?)

5) Then there is a complicated but equally important issue: It is a hazardous location! The Coastal Act (CA) 30235, provides that an existing principal structure (house) may be protected from the sea, if the applicant can prove with a scientific study of the ocean processes that it is in danger from the sea. BUT NOT A NEW HOUSE! For a new house on the waterfront, one must do the same kind of study to prove it is NOT in danger from the sea. Romney's team did not do a study, instead they argue that an unpermitted retaining wall built in the early 50s is good enough; well, except when asked where the study is including an analysis based upon sea level rise, they submitted a letter stating something like, even if the existing retaining was were not there, the ocean would not reach the main floor level el. 30 ASL, until 2055, The law requires a house to be safe for a lifetime of 75 years; that would be 2088, 33 years after the Romney engineer says it could get wet. Oh yes, and what about the lower habitable level that supports the main floor? It is at El. 22.0! If it goes, so does the rest of the house.

6) Vertical Public Access. The CA 30212 (and the California constitution) protects the Public Prescriptive Rights to and along the sea. Romney offers a lateral easement along beach for "passive" use. But, the public's historical use has been passive and active. More than that, I submitted evidence of a vertical access located between the houses that the public (including me as a kid, and then as a lifeguard) used. When the street was constructed, the end had/has a concrete walk leading to stairs onto the sandy beach. It also serves as the only storm drainage system for surface urban flow. Not a coincidence, that most street ends have either a storm drain pipe outlet and/or surface runoff. Romney proposes to allow the water, but not the people to continue to use the walk. The CA requires a "finding" the Commission must make: that the project will not interfere with the public's prescriptive rights where acquired through historical use.

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What ever the outcome (because the odds are against him) - you have to admire Tony Ciani for taking on the Goliath Mitt Romney. Especially when it concerns a matter that is really not Mr. Ciani's; being that he doesn't live in the neighborhood any more. La Jolla is certainly better off for having had Tony Ciani and his wife as residents; and so is Dunemere home owners who are quite possibly overwhelmed with it all. The Coastal Commission, California citizens and 47% of U.S. (who are looked down upon by the great Williard Mitt Romney) have a friend in Tony Ciani. Who is expending time and effort simply because;

it's the right thing to do!

We wish you well in your battle Mr. Ciani and I hope my fellow DU'rs help get attention to your saga!
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Response to laserhaas (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:04 PM

1. The funny thing about Al Capone is that even his tax evasion conviction was overturned in Court.

Posthumously over turned in Federal Court. If Al had paid his taxes it would have been self incrimination violating the 5th amendment. Supposedly this loophole has been closed but I wonder? Mitt Romney is a criminal enterprise that Al Capone could not have dreamed of duplicating and represents pinnacle of all American criminal enterprise (one of several) made possible by legislative graft and lobbyist.

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Response to gordianot (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:18 PM

2. It is quaint that you point this all out 'gordianot'. For I'm suing Mitt Romney for Civil RICO real

 

soon.

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Response to laserhaas (Reply #2)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:24 PM

3. Go get him, cannot think of anyone more deserving of either jail time or poverty.

I would really like to see them sell the dancing therapy horse.

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Response to gordianot (Reply #3)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:40 PM

4. Chances are he Romney will never go to jail (UNLESS someone comes forward from his inner circle

 

and testifies against him).

But on Civil RICO - I've got him dead to rights.

Even if he destroyed ALL the records

He bragged about getting millions each year from Bain Capital.

Bain Capital was definitely involved in Racketeering Frauds

And Civil RICO only requires that you "indirectly" benefit....

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Response to laserhaas (Reply #4)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:46 PM

5. Poverty works, he could live in his son's basement.

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Response to gordianot (Reply #5)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:59 PM

7. LOL - you mean the one he "purportedly" was living in when he became Gov

 

of Massachusetts?

That enigma!

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Response to laserhaas (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 02:49 PM

6. CA has similar laws to my state

But I've read over the years that CA has been quietly doing away with "access rights" - no one can restrict the public's right to access the water.

No one. Not even Romney.

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #6)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 03:02 PM

8. We will see. As the San Diego Business Daily quoted the Coastal Commission

 

there are ways of working around the issues.

I hope you're right though!

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Response to laserhaas (Original post)

Tue Sep 3, 2013, 07:11 PM

9. K&R, and More Power to you Tony. nt

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Response to laserhaas (Original post)


Response to laserhaas (Original post)

Wed Oct 2, 2013, 04:03 AM

11. Romneys bring the Bain with a Capital G(reed) to La Jolla

That's for sure. What's everybody else's is theirs to raid, ruin, steal, use, privatize... that's the Bain credo. Pension and health funds, a community's customer base, other people's property, other people's civil rights mean nothing to Bain, Mitt or his hideous family.

I remember reading how he was hassling kids on this public beach, like "get off my lawn," when he moved in. Also He & Mrs. invaded a neighbor's Xmas party where he kept annoyingly accosting Glenn Doherty, then expressed a personal loss when Doherty was killed in Benghazi during the campaign. Doherty's bereaved family was sickened by Romney's callous exploitation and his oft lie.

Most annoying has been the blatant narcissism of this mansion expansion itself, "vampire squiding" onto a beach that bears almost mythological significance for the locals. Not to mention robbing his neighbors of their own homes most valuable asset, blocking their own ocean views. He depreciates nearby properties(and city property tax coffers) millions of taxable dollars but at the same time has fought for a reduction in his own property tax.

I'm glad that Tony is fighting Romney's impervious land(beach) theft of our commons and the blind,selfish self- entitlement that drives this Family. I hope that the Ca Coastal Commission holds to its responsibilities and protects the rights and safety of the public from this despicable pillage. No doubt there is going to be ginormous money and influence wielded against the public interest, which Tony is so
admirably trying to defend.

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Response to stuffmatters (Reply #11)

Thu Oct 3, 2013, 10:01 AM

12. Thanks for stopping by apropos named "stuffmatters"....

 

Here's an update on the story with another DU thread by yours truly.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023774291


And - please Stay Tuned -much more stuff to come!

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Response to laserhaas (Reply #12)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 03:29 AM

13. Good wishes for you tomorrow(10/11) at the Ca Coastal Commission hearing!

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