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Holmby Hills seeks annexation by Beverly Hills over potholes

Holmby Hills
Some residents in Holmby Hills say the pothole problem is so bad there, they want to be annexed by the neighboring city of Beverly Hills.

When he drives his 2006 Toyota Land Cruiser to work, William Fleischman can tell if the streets he's navigating are in Los Angeles (bumpety-bumpety) or Beverly Hills (smooth).

Among the worst, he says, are the roads just beyond his gated driveway in Holmby Hills, a posh L.A. enclave north of Sunset Boulevard.

Frustrated by the sad state of the streets, Fleischman earlier this month asked the Beverly Hills City Council to consider annexing the 40 or so members of the Holmby Hills Homeowners Assn. north of Sunset and east of Beverly Glen Boulevard.

Fleischman said he took the step after residents hailed the idea at a May meeting and the board authorized him to look into it.

"Holmby Hills pays millions of dollars to Los Angeles in property taxes, and we're getting back thousands of dollars in services," said Fleischman, 66, a lawyer who owns a Century City investment firm.

In Los Angeles, potholes are equal-opportunity annoyers and tire-busters. The cash-strapped city said it repairs about 250,000 potholes annually in sectors poor and rich.

Leaving the city of L.A., however, would be no easy matter, said Murray D. Fischer, an attorney who has consulted with Fleischman. Fischer said Holmby Hills residents might instead consider raising private funds to fix the roads.

"It's hard to imagine the city of L.A. would give up that kind of tax value," he said of Holmby Hills' proposal to join Beverly Hills.


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Photo: Holmby Hills resident William Fleischman shows where a traffic cone warns of a large hole in the street surface on North Faring Road in Holmby Hills. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times.

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