the city's Community Development Department and sits on the Park and
Recreation Board, fills a newly created slot on the committee, one of six
established by a 1999 state Senate bill that opened the body to Burbank
and five other cities.
The conservancy, which was established in 1979, acquires land for
conservation and other environmental protection programs. The agency
manages more than 17,000 acres of parkland in Los Angeles and Ventura
counties. The 23-member advisory committee provides input to the
conservancy's board of directors.
Council members cited Hirsch's awareness of land preservation issues
and his 14 years on the Park and Recreation board as factors in their
decision to pick him over two other candidates.
"He has got years and years on the park board," Councilman Bob Kramer
said before the 4-1 vote. "This is an easy decision."
Burbank was given a seat on the committee in the summer with the
passage of a bill sponsored by state Sen. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank). The
bill, which became law Jan. 1, also created committee seats for Glendale,
La Canada Flintridge, Pasadena, Malibu and Calabasas.
In December, Glendale appointed Cal Poly Pomona accounting professor
John Karayan to the committee. La Canada Flintridge has named City
Councilman Anthony Portantino to the panel, a decision that has drawn
criticism due to Portantino's relative inexperience with
A lifelong resident of Burbank, Hirsch, 55, beat out consultant Connie
Wilson, who received one vote, and advertising executive Jon Jay, who
received no votes, for the unpaid post. Hirsch works as the city's
licenses and code services supervisor.
Hirsch said he would represent Burbank based on input from the City
"I'll just be acting as a conduit for the flow of two-way
information," he said. "I'm all ears right now."