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NEWS IN BRIEF / A summary of developments across Los
Angeles County | OFFICIAL BUSINESS / Courts and Government

Council Approves Plan for Senior Housing

October 22, 1998

The Los Angeles City Council gave the go-ahead Wednesday for a controversial senior housing project that supporters claim met with trouble because of intolerance toward senior citizens.

Opponents of the 85-unit project proposed near the intersection of Moorpark Street and Noble Avenue in Sherman Oaks denied that they were motivated by prejudice. Rather, they said, they objected to a legal exception that allows double the number of units on the site.

Most council members showed little sympathy toward opponents.

"Who are the people who qualify for affordable senior housing?" asked Councilwoman Ruth Galanter. "It's the people who taught you in fifth grade, the people who cleaned your teeth when you were 10 years old. . . . They retired on pensions a long time ago and can't afford today's housing market. It's really unfair to say those people wouldn't be welcome in your neighborhood."

In a victory for Councilman Mike Feuer, whose district includes Sherman Oaks, the council voted 12 to 1 to reject the neighbors' appeal of the project--proposed by the nonprofit Menorah Housing Foundation.

Gray-haired Council President John Ferraro inserted a light, but nonetheless pointed remark that summed up the debate's personal cast: "I don't know if I have a conflict or not," he joked, turning toward his closest contemporary on the council, Nate Holden. "Maybe, Mr. Holden, you and I have to recuse ourselves because we're seniors?"

The complex will include 85 units and 85 parking spaces in a four-story building at 15126 Moorpark St.

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