Malibu Officials Addressed Portable Toilet Conundrum Back in January
• City Council Was Told Permanent Outhouses Are Not Development and Appear to Be Unregulated
The porta-potty wars between a Malibu family and an American music icon have leaked their way around the world in recent weeks.
While most media reports have indicated that folksinger Bob Dylan and his people are remaining mum on the subject, the vast majority of the news stories also have reported that Malibu city officials had no comment on the matter.
However, when the complainant, Cindy Emminger, took her portable toilet saga to the city council in January of this year, not mentioning who the offending party was, the head of the building and planning department addressed the issue publicly.
Vic Peterson told surprised council members the matter is still under investigation by code enforcement and that usually precludes him from talking about the specifics, but he said the city does not have an ordinance prohibiting full-time use of an outhouse.
“We have spent a lot of time on this issue. We talked to the Los Angeles County Health Department, which has no regulation. There is no specific code we can cite,” the building official said.
At that time, Peterson confirmed that his staff had tried to deliver his business card to the guardhouse of the residence—he did not reveal the name of the party or the location—and they were warned that the code enforcement officer would be reported to authorities for trespassing. “They said they were going to sue the city,” he said.
Then Mayor Pamela Conley Ulich asked if the devices are considered development when they are used permanently. Peterson said, “No.” But the building official said the file was not closed on the matter. “We are not done,” he said.
The rest of the council did not comment on the issue.