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November 05, 2007



"End run"? Let's see: SunCal sought and obtained a zoning change like anyone else is entitled to do.

How is that an end run, Frustrated?

Unless you take a Brezhnev Doctrine approach that once zoning is established, it can never, ever be changed. If that's the case, I await your denunciation of the re-zoning that created the Platinum Triangle.

Has the time come that we can all move on from this unpleasant saga the developer created?

Disagreement is fine, but is it too much to expect it to be honest?

Gosh, was it SunCal that sought to intimidate a councilmember out of voting by pulling a "our lawyers think you have a conflict" just before a councilmeeting?

Was it SunCal that sought to intimidate another councilmember by intimating a corporate contribution to her battered womens shelter wouldn't happen as long as she opposed SOAR?

Is it SunCal who's supporters routinely accuse councilmembers they disagree with of being on the take?

Is SunCal seeking to recall Curt Pringle or Harry Sidhu over a policy disagreement?

No. If you choose to look, you'll find the answer to those questions amongst the Disney/SOAR coalition.

Enough's enough


Much as you chose to include your disclaimer about being on the SunCal payroll, wouldn't it be most appropriate for ANY other consultant/emissary of the company (Lord knows they have quite a few) to take up for its cause and allow you to return to moderating this web site in a truly unbiased fashion? No one is suggesting that you can't have an opinion on any matter of interest to Blogophiles, but some might find that your compensation in this matter would be a detriment to the free flow of debate.


This is all imploding in on SunCal a lot faster than I thought it would.

But what I'm most surprised at is how confrontational SunCal has become with people and organizations that just a short time ago were its allies. The Frank family, Anaheim's city council, some of the good people of Anaheim themselves, etc. All of those former SunCal friends are now on SunCal's enemies list, only slightly below the Walt Disney Company, the hardworking Cast Members of the Disneyland Resort, and the entire Anaheim Chamber of Commerce.

SunCal is packing up their station wagon and getting ready to leave Anaheim for the home office in Irvine, that is now clearly obvious to all of us. But what is surprising is how SunCal is blowing raspberries at the people and organizations in Anaheim that until just a few weeks ago it claimed were friends and allies.


...allow you to return to moderating this web site in a truly unbiased fashion?

And when was that? This blog has never been "unbiased." What we strive to be is factual and accurate, but not unbiased.

...but some might find that your compensation in this matter would be a detriment to the free flow of debate.

How is that? Do I stop pro-Disney people from commenting? Do I prevent other members of the Blogpen who hold an opposing view from posting?

No, I don't, as this very post makes obvious. So exactly how does my affiliation with SunCal impede the free flow of debate?

This is getting to be a very tired -- not to mention baseless -- criticism.



Can you please back up your assertions with oh...I don't know...maybe some evidence?

Clearly, SunCal is in a contractual dispute with Dudley frank. But as for the rest your your jibe -- what enemies list?

the brain...just asking

Should anyone be suprised when a carpetbagger packs their bags and leaves town?

The suprise was how long they kept up their vigil. There were a lot of comments about who was an outsider 50+ year business resident Disney, who is headquartered in Burbank. Or SunCal who pops in and out of communities whenever an opportuity presents itself.

Hope the council works hard to maintain a strong resort district and deal with real affordable housing options available in the city.

By the way, I'm not aligned with Disney/SOAR/SunCal or any other entity in this issue. This was just such an obviously bad zoning decision from inception. There should not be anything wrong with asking tough questions when our electeds act in a manner that is not in the best interest of the communites they serve.

David Michael

And now even Councilperson Kring is saying to stop the "Madness"


>>The City Council is expected to nix plans to allow housing in the Anaheim Resort – a proposal that has divided the city and drawn the ire of Disney for more than a year.

Councilwoman Lucille Kring, one of three members who supported the housing plan, is now saying that she will ask that the council repeal its decision to allow homes in the Disneyland area. Two other council members have already said they support the idea. The council also would kill a referendum set for the June 3 ballot to rescind the zoning.

Kring's change of mind came after developer SunCal sent a letter to the city, informing officials of the "decision not to continue to seek or advocate City approval of" residential zoning for its proposal. A SunCal attorney said the company still will pursue the housing development.

"They are not going to pursue it," Kring said. "Why should we go through the expense of an election?"<<

Based on what I know, the "closed" session will deal with the lawsuit that was filed by Disney and is basically placed on hold until after the June 2008 election, as the decision of the voters has a major impact on the lawsuit.

But there is a lot of issues to removing the issue(s) from the ballot, the city council approved both of them, and the Initative (the issue that deals with the entire Resort Area has to be placed on the ballot) so there isn't much "savings" in the election costs, unless the city decides to make it law.


Jubal, if by "contractual dispute" with the Frank family you mean the latest escrow extension that SunCal failed to pay the family, then yes there is a contractual dispute. Good for the Frank family for getting on with their business and shopping their property around to a legit buyer who will actually pay up and close escrow without a half dozen extensions.

As for the "enemies list" mention, what friends does SunCal have left in Anaheim?... Lorri Galloway the YouTube star? Everyone else in town who may have been sympathetic six months ago has been burned by SunCal and their shenanigans, double-talk, and lawsuits.

The housing market collapsed, entirely beyond SunCal's control. That's the root cause of the SunCal exit now, and perhaps part of the reason why the home office no longer wants to dump their dwindling cash reserves into a losing battle. SunCal could have left gracefully, and blamed the housing collapse. But instead they seem to be going kicking and screaming, not paying their escrow extensions and flinging more lawsuits at anyone who looks at them funny.

SunCal needs to take lessons in being a graceful loser and going out with their head high.

And yet, through it all, there's good 'ol Disneyland USA, still sitting there pumping out tax dollars and spreading wealth and happiness. Walt Disney's Magic Kingdom and the rest of his fabulous Resort, pulling in 22 million visitors per year who bring hundreds of millions of dollars worth of business and commerce into Anaheim. So who looks like the better neighbor now? And why should anyone trust Lorri Galloway with anything ever again?

The only part that I find truly shocking is how quickly this all imploded on SunCal. I figured they still had at least three or four months left before they finally left town. It now looks like they may not make it to Thanksgiving.


I'm not a lawyer and so I'd rather not address something best addressed by SunCal's lawyers, but your characterization of the dispute as just SunCal blowing off a payment is a gross oversimplification. You might try actually reading the lawsuit, if that isn't too much trouble for you.

Amidst your crocodile tears for Dudley Frank, have you asked yourself why the extensions have been necessary? Could it be the Disney/SOAR organizations relentless efforts to prevent frustrate SunCal and Frank's request for a re-zoning and attempts to move forward with a project based on that new zoning? Don't affix blame to SunCal that is properly palced on Disney/SOAR.

"Shenanigans, double-talk and lawsuits." Nice rhetoric, Westsider, but again you've directed it at the wrong party. Your invective accurately describes Disney's conduct.

And I see you're still trying to make this about Disneyland itself. Nothing if not consistent. Was the Happiest Place On Earth going to disappear in a puff of pixie dust if the SunCal project were built? Would tourists stop coming and paying? Of course they wouldn't. But pretending Disnerland was going to vanish is resiential were built at the edge of the resort district beats mounting an actual argument.

Why should anyone trust Lorri Galloway? Because she has exhibited chracter, steadfastness and honesty throughout this battle, which is far more than i can say for the parade of SOAR robots who have traipsed to the podium at city council meetings this year.


My mention of Disneyland was not because I think Disneyland would disappear if SunCal builds 1,500 condos on Haster street. Just the opposite actually. I apologize if I didn't express myself accurately in that post.

Disneyland isn't going anywhere.

SunCal has tried to paint itself as a friendly new neighbor moving into town, while SunCal would like the good people of Anaheim to believe that Disneyland is some uncaring business run by a faceless "corporation". For a while CDPA even had the mistaken nerve to try and paint Disney as an "out of towner", even though they've been on the corner of Katella and Harbor for 53 years.

And then there's all of the CDPA materials that purposely use the wrong nomenclature when referring to the Walt Disney Company. CDPA consistently uses the incorrect title of "Disney Corporation", because it sounds more sinister and evil.

The correct name is Walt Disney Company, that's been in use since 1984. Prior to 1984 the title of the company was Walt Disney Productions. At no time since 1927 has the word "corporation" been used in the organization that Walt started and nurtured.

So, now that we have established that Disneyland is not run by some evil "Corporation", that Disneyland and the 20,000 Disneylanders that work there are staying in Anaheim, and that CDPA has a lazy spell-checker, what about that property SunCal is no longer paying the escrow extensions on? And what of this latest letter to the city council from SunCal stating they no longer wish to have the city council pursue the request to place new housing on that land?

What does that mean exactly? I can tell you exactly what it looks like and what everyone is saying it looks like, including the city council members who once were behind the SunCal requests.

It looks exactly like SunCal is skipping town, leaving the Frank family waiting at the escrow office, and leaving the city council stuck with the legal bills. SunCal is gone, and Disneyland is still there.

If that's not accurate, this would be your chance Jubal to set us all straight. More importantly, someone from SunCal should call the city council chambers ASAP, because the council is now under the impression SunCal is leaving town. If that's a mistake, SunCal better call Ms. Kring and explain it to her before she reverses her vote at tonights meeting.


Matt, when Suncal stops sending you payments to promote their luxury condo project in the resort zone, then you will know that the fat lady has sung. Also, you say that what they did was proper? They went before the Anaheim Planning Commission and were turned down by a vote of 5-0. They presented no site plan or plan of any kind to justify a zoning change. Then they go before the city council who, against the advice of the planning commission votes to change the zoning without any plan and how convenient that an environmental impact study is waived. I don't think that you can find any major city changing zoning on the behalf of ANYONE where a site plan or plan of any kind was not submitted and an environmental impact study not required. 2,000 hotel rooms do not equate to 1500 residential homes under any standard, so one must suspect that some deal was made here to waive the EIR. Our resort zone is too important to let three people in our city to decide what they think is best for our city. Hopefully the city council will have the guts to adopt the SOAR Iniative so that this kind of devisiveness will not occur in the future. What happens in the Resort affects all of Anaheim and the people of Anaheim should have the final say if changes are to be made to the Resort Zone that was created in 1994.


The OC Register today has a perfect short synopsis of why this looks like SunCal is leaving town. From the Register:

>>"SunCal’s plan to build homes in the tourist area has run into a series of blows that could devastate the proposal that has received national attention.

Last month, the property owner halted a purchase agreement for the plot when developer SunCal failed to pay $500,000 to extend the deal. Two weeks ago, SunCal sued the property owner over a breach of contract. Last week, SunCal sent a letter to the city, stating it was stopping legal payments to fight a Disney lawsuit against the residential project.

Now, a key councilwoman is saying she will move to repeal the residential zoning that breathed life into the development proposal."<<

Perfect synopsis.

I'll say it again, if SunCal isn't leaving town, they need to phone Ms. Kring ASAP!

Ms. Kring, in tonights council meeting, is helping the fat lady get ready to enter stage right. If SunCal is still pursuing their housing plan for Haster street like the SunCal lawyer Mr. Miller repeatedly states, then SunCal better get down to Anaheim city hall and explain themselves immediately! Only four more hours until the council meeting. Run, Mr. Miller, run! Don't even stop at Starbucks!

David Michael

Here is a link to the cross-complaint lawsuit filed by the Frank Family against SunCal, and discusses the actual contract and extensions that were made, and how SunCal failed to live up with the original terms (reducing the purchase price by $10 million) and all the additional deals made, and how SunCal failed to make the October 2007 payment, and the reasons why SunCal lost the rights to purchase the property.


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