Caltrans regulations lead to cancellation of Lone Pine Xmas Parade

No cones for the common man.

Bureaucratese seems to say, “Follow our rules even if you can’t figure them out.” That’s the kind of letter Lone Pine Chamber Director Kathleen New said she received after Caltrans rejected this year’s application for a permit submitted November 2nd to conduct Lone Pine’s Christmas Parade December 8th. Caltrans rejected it without much explanation.

Then on November 19th, they sent a bureaucratic letter with a list of complex requirements that left Ms. New in angry confusion about how to create a “Traffic Handling Plan” approved by a Civil Engineer, a plan, said Caltrans’ letter that “must adhere to the 2010 California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.”

She had to get permission from Inyo County, and proof that the person implementing the Traffic Handling Plan detour has a “California C31-Construction Zone Traffic Control license or greater.” What does that mean, Ms. New wanted to know?

Finally, she could not use Caltrans signs, cones or barricades that she had always used for the past 20 years. Ms. New said all the mystifying requirements made her cry. She said in all past years, she would get Caltrans cones and barricades for the detour and CHP would direct traffic. She sent in a hand-drawn map of the route and detour and that was the end of it. Permit granted.

This time, distraught that time was so short before the December 8 parade, Ms. New started calling Caltrans. She said no one returned her call for a week. That’s when she called Sierra Wave Media.

On Tuesday, Terry Erlwein, Caltrans traffic engineer and Kurt Weiermann of the permits department talked to us and said they could work with Ms. New and put together a plan for her. The offer of help came too late. Ms. New had already called community groups to cancel the parade in the face of a rejected permit.

Why all the bureaucratic requirements for town parades that used to go ahead smoothly and practically? Erlwein said Caltrans is under increasing scrutiny and criticism and they have to follow policies to the letter. She said, “Investigations are going on all over the place.” For small town parades? Well, maybe not those. Erlwein and others did try this week to find a resolution to the Lone Pine situation.

Communities and their parades have found out that they can no longer use Caltrans cones or barricades. They are public property so why not? Erlwein said Caltrans can’t show favorites. It’s state policy.

Kurt Weierman took responsibility for the situation. He sent the icy, bureaucratic letter to the Lone Pine Chamber and said he was following policy. He said he’s being called the Grinch around the office.

He’s being called other things in Lone Pine. Said Kathleen New, “We’re not dealing with the Rose Parade here. It’s a little parade. I’m really upset.”

Other towns have faced the same, newly enforced bureaucracy – the Bishop Chamber of Commerce which has filed an application for a Christmas Parade, Bridgeport and Independence have or will deal with the tightened up bureaucracy.

Kathleen New said she received the letter from Weiermann November 20th. She started calling for help the next day and said no one returned her call or helped her for an entire week. Time was running out, so she cancelled the parade. Ms. New said, “They could’ve written a letter in July about the new requirements. Caring about the communities where you live doesn’t require brain surgery.” Of Caltrans, she said, “They don’t care.”

A smaller parade on Locust Street in Lone Pine will happen Saturday at 4:30pm. Proceeds will help the family who lost their home by fire this week. At last word, the major, Main St. parade will not happen.

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Chuck Mitchell
Chuck Mitchell
10 years ago

All of these of these governmental agencies have a way making it difficult for anything that names or pertains to Christmas. Screw CalTrans and do it anyway. It’s your town.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Chuck Mitchell

Sorry Chuck it doesn’t work that way. As much as we would want to just do it, it just doesn’t work so easily. But thanks for the sentiment .. Merry Christmas to you too. All of the years that things have been allowed to happen, times are new, and law… Read more »

Big Rick OBrien
Big Rick OBrien
8 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

You’re right Al…what was acceptable in the past is a big no-no today, due to political -correctness AND California being the lawsuit capitol of the free world. BUT…there’s the old adage, Spirit of the Law vs. the Letter of the Law, which I know you are very familiar with. Sometimes,… Read more »

ferdinand lopez
ferdinand lopez
10 years ago

japan just invented something thats gonna put 4 out of 5 caltrans workers out of a job,its a shovel that stands by itself

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

Too late Ferd … they have shirts with the pockets upside down .. fit the shovel handle inside .. hands free for coffee and a donut .. gotta get up earlier than that in the morning .. to read the news. Funny though.

Eastern Sierra Local
Eastern Sierra Local
10 years ago

This is comedy…..the comment is “the docs written by District 6 still need to be made available to the public.” Then there is a website posted that leads to all the environmental documents ironically “available to the public” via a PDF…..wow, this person is CRAZY and silly! All this effort… Read more »

Eastern Sierra Local
Eastern Sierra Local
10 years ago

As a resident of Independence these are lies US 395 wasn’t closed in Independence at anytime.
Who is “caltranssite.com?” This person sounds like a “certifiable” loon.

Trouble
Trouble
10 years ago

I read somewhere else that Caltrans was trying to help fix this mess they created. Otherwise Santa has promised to bend the rest of their stakes.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

Again .. I could list all of the nonfactual statements here, but i think people got the idea with my reply to your previous letter in regard to giving advise to Ms. New.

You need to clarify your claims and accusations. I suggest being more clearer and truthful.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

Sounds like a person who works the system for personal gain indirectly through others by getting them to file law suits, someone who is really good at suing Caltrans and winning .. but doesn’t seem to know what they are talking about .. a lot of hot air. !. No… Read more »

Greg
Greg
10 years ago

As a taxpaying motorist I view the use of Caltrans cones for a parade as inappropriate. My taxes are paid to improve and maintain the roads. If Caltrans has extra resources to be used for parades, then they should be cut by that amount because they don’t need it. Wasting… Read more »

upthecreek
upthecreek
10 years ago
Reply to  Greg

besides they have better things to do…Or do they?

LOL

GGW

w
w
9 years ago
Reply to  upthecreek

…Yeah,better things to do…The coffee is getting cold at Lee’s Frontier.

common sense
common sense
10 years ago
Reply to  Greg

The reason Caltrans loaned cones to the Lone Pine parade was not that they have an abundance of resources. The reason they could afford to loan the cones out was because the parade was on a weekend when they were not using them. The loaning of cones and barricades is… Read more »

Waxlips
Waxlips
10 years ago
Reply to  Greg

Greg,
The community of Lone Pine pay taxes too, and so do I. If CalTrans wants to use my tax money to help out with community events it’s OK with me. Like you, I am only one single tax payer.

Wayne Deja
Wayne Deja
10 years ago

….Thanks Cal-Trans…….

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

I say thanks too Wayne, to Caltrans, they do a lot for us on a daily basis, and get hammered pretty regularly.

Wayne Deja
Wayne Deja
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

I got a good Cal-Trans story to tell….a few years ago,coming back from Bishop,there were some cars lined up along the road,with people chasing after a little dog that had gotten away and was running along the shoulder.Just after I pulled over and wanting to help,a Cal-Trans truck came screatching… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

Yeah that’s a good story Wayne.

Wayne Deja
Wayne Deja
10 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

Lesson to the story….CalTrans IS NOT Law Enforcement…..even though,at times…at least in my little town,they might think they are.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

No one ever said they were law enforcement Wayne lol .. some of those people think they are, but when it comes to the highway, they are the authority of what you can and can not do, even the CHP does not have complete authority over Caltrans in regard to… Read more »

Wayne Deja
Wayne Deja
10 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

In response to Big Al’s last comment…On the day of the “doggie chase” I mentioned earlier,they sure weren’t the “authority of the highways” that day….trying to tell people what they can and can not do. Didn’t work out too well that day.In that sort of instance,little CalTrans can do besides… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
9 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

You have it figured out Wayne .. so that means the phone company doesn’t really have any authority over people when it comes to their installations and equipment?

Wayne Deja
Wayne Deja
9 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

Big Al….One last response…..You seem to use the word “authority” a lot…When I think about it much,in reference to your LAST statement…No…the phone company has no authority what-so-ever over me…..unless I don’t pay my bill and they shut me off…Same with Cal Trans,regarding the “doggie chase”…If I choose to pull… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
9 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Deja

OK Wayne one more response too … I was only referring to your use of the word Authority in your posts. I think the phone company does have authority over you in more ways than you think when it comes to their property and such. Yes you’re right, if you… Read more »

Trouble
Trouble
10 years ago

Come on Caltrans- some rules are made to be broken.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Trouble

Trouble … hehe trouble maker LOL .. well that is just the thing .. rules were ignored to give support in things, times have changed, and the law suits are bearing their ugly teeth in everything. This all will work out, everyone will have to be on the same page… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

You know, it is not that Caltrans does not care as this article goes out of it’s way to insinuate. As I said in a previous article about road side advertisements. There are new people involved in the process, it used to be you could go to Caltrans and get… Read more »

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

Not sure what you think the bias is. I look for the best truth I can find about what agencies do. It’s not about personal attacks on the individuals who work there unless they have done something that needs to be brought to light. I quote people who have experiences… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

I’m not sure what the bias is? .. it is clearly there .. words like bureaucracies, bureaucrats … Bureaucratese seems to say, “Follow our rules even if you can’t figure them out.” Caring about the communities where you live doesn’t require brain surgery.” Of Caltrans, she said, “They don’t care.”… Read more »

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

Gee, Big Al, we didn’t mean to upset you so much. But, then, we never aim to upset anyone. Sometimes quoting people and telling what happens upsets some. Such is life. It’s best to tell what people are saying and doing rather than cover it up and hope for the… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

No Benett I am not upset lol .. just pointing some things out as how I see it .. don’t take it personal now LOL. It will work out.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Do you have work for me there .. I can write good stories!

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

You’re too biased.
BK

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Except I need a real good proof reader, I think?

Sour grapes
Sour grapes
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

I think Big Al is just miffed that his man didn’t get elected in the General Election (Lot’s of them out there).
Come on, Big Al. Live with it.
You can be bigger than that.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

I appreciate that you say you tried to help mediate things, that’s cool. But one comment eluding to names they are calling Mr. Weireman only served to fan the flames from how I see it .. what was your intention for including that comment from the caller? And so far… Read more »

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

Oh, Big Al. In a past post you said you don’t like me. Your bias is showing!
Benett Kessler

Right-wing tendencies
Right-wing tendencies
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Big sounds like a person with Right-wing tendencies Right Wing Authoritarian Tendencies: Faulty reasoning Right wing authoritarian conservatives are more likely to: •Make many incorrect inferences from evidence. •Hold contradictory ideas leading them to `speak out of both sides of their mouths.’ •Uncritically accept that many problems are `our most… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Wait .. where did I say that? really? … that I don’t like you? hmmmm .. so does that mean you won’t give me my own byline?

“The truth according to Big AL or how you have been told.” hehe

Guess not … darn, I think it would be fun.

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

Big Al, so far you don’t understand news, so byline is out of the question. Although you get a fair amount
of them on this blog.
BK

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Awwe Dr. Facts are you talking about yourself there or me? Or are you trying to flatter me?

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

OHHH now I remember, yes .. I said that I didn’t have much respect for you, or something like that, in how I see how you have not been very impartial on things … awwe but Benett, I didn’t say I didn’t like you. That isn’t personal since it is… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Benett Kessler

Well I appreciate you letting me down easy Benett, Yeah I don’t think I would make it in the news business, you’re right.

Benett Kessler
Benett Kessler
10 years ago
Reply to  Big AL

Big Al, you are fun. Thanks for blogging.
Benett

ferdinand lopez
ferdinand lopez
10 years ago

the closest parallel street is the L.A. aquaduct

Mike Prather, Lone Pine
Mike Prather, Lone Pine
10 years ago

a water parade. good idea

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

You will not find the truth at caltransite.com it is a biased slanderous compilation of accusations. The first line you read is about someone being a certain person being a thieving bitch .. and something alluding to certain sexual activities. How can that be anything believable with such coarse language.… Read more »

Eastern Sierra Local
Eastern Sierra Local
10 years ago

Oh wow, what a slanderous, rambling, diatribe of non-sense. This website looks and feels like something a non-local created because of some issues with a project in Independence? Wow, all this fancy website material over a “wooden fence for $7,500?” And further reading of all these attachments says its a… Read more »

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago

No not crazy .. just an opportunist, who works the system .. who ever it is.

Tourbillon
Tourbillon
10 years ago

Seriously? This is an issue? Good lord people, if you hyperventilate over this, I pity you when you get a load of ObamaCare rules.

Ken Warner
Ken Warner
10 years ago
Reply to  Tourbillon

That’s a stretch. Tying your outrage that millions of people will be able to get health care who otherwise wouldn’t without Obamacare to a road closing in Lone Pine.

The mind is a dark and mysterious place…

Tourbillon
Tourbillon
10 years ago
Reply to  Ken Warner

As usual you have misunderstood me, deliberately I hope, because otherwise there may not be enough solar panels in the state to illuminate your thought.

Big AL
Big AL
10 years ago
Reply to  Ken Warner

Ken that is just the norm here .. I have come to see.

sierragrl
sierragrl
10 years ago

Not that I don’t fault Caltrans for this mess, but I wonder why the parade wasn’t just switched to one of the streets that runs parallel to the highway? Would that not have been a better solution then to just cancel it?

longhaul
longhaul
10 years ago

welcome to the world of Cal Trans and the Forest Service. They both have rules that they don’t even understand.

ferdinand lopez
ferdinand lopez
10 years ago

bah,humbug,caltrans,shame on you

Steve
Steve
9 years ago

“Your tax dollars at work”