Director Rob Reiner is fighting City Hall to stop large retailers in shopping malls from encroaching on Mom n’ Pop businesses.
“I’m game, ” said Reiner. “Basically, I’m fighting the city of Malibu here. You’ve got the City Council, you’ve got the city attorney, you’ve got all these people lining up against us, because quite frankly, we wouldn’t have to do this if they were doing their job.”
The issue is over Measure R, which would require voter approval for any development larger than 20, 000 feet. It would also set a limit on chain stores with the stipulation that no more than 30% of tenants in a mall would be big retailers. Councilman Lou La Monte, who is against Measure R, commented, “Measure R was written by some lawyers in San Francisco with a short cut through Rob Reiner’s living room. Ultimately, it still gives you a lot more development and a lot more chain stores.”
“There is this idea that you can make Malibu into some kind of shopping destination, ” said Reiner. “And you have chain store after chain store. We are already overrun. And we’re hoping to slow it down so it doesn’t get to a point where it is beyond livable.”
Other celebrities, such as Barbara Streisand, Stephen Spielberg and Dreamwork’s Jeffrey Katzenberg also support Measure R. Councilman Paul Gristanti said, “It will do a lot more damage than it fixes. I think it will take the city several years of spending tons of money it doesn’t have that we can spend on other things like the park across the street.”
L.A. Police Commissioner Steve Soboroff, who is involved with in a project with hugely popular natural and organic food retailer Whole Foods, which will be impacted by Measure R, in Malibu took out a full page ad in the Times arguing against Measure R.
“The Reiner initiative is trying to do the right thing the wrong way, Soboroff wrote.