The City of Lomita

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Barry Waite, Lomita City Councilmember
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City Councilmember

Councilmember Waite was elected to the Lomita City Council in December 2020 with a term expiration of November 2024. Waite formerly served as a Lomita City Councilmember from December 2005 to December 2009. He has also served on various boards and commissions. Click on the links below to find out more!

Planning Commissioner

Barry concurrently serves as the Lomita Planning Commissioner. Waite formerly served as Planning Commissioner from 2000 to 2005.

"This is probably one of the toughest jobs in town. The hardest part is considering the concerns of the community and property owners within the confines of the law. When the council appointed me to the commission, I was immediately impressed with the caliber of the commissioners. Even though I had worked as a city planner, I found I had a lot to learn from my fellow commissioners and city staff. Even items that seem quite simple can become difficult. The issue of precedent comes up at every meeting. We ask ourselves if we are approving something generally reasonable that might become a precedent for something unreasonable in the future. We look at decisions the commission made years ago that improved or hurt the community. 

Another factor that makes being a planning commissioner difficult is that people are often very upset when they come to a meeting. They know something is proposed in their area but have not had a chance to thoroughly review it. They may not know how the process works, and they are nervous about speaking before the commission. As such, their comments can be quite heated. It is important to remember these things and avoid taking their comments personally. While I do not expect anyone to agree with every decision I have made, I think most people will agree that I strive to be fair and honest about what I think and why. Serving as a member of your planning commission has been a real honor. Click here for a good article by the League of California Cities on the role of a planning commissioner." - Barry
"Lomita receives Community Development Block Grant funds through Los Angeles County's Community Development Commission. The CDAB reviewed the city's use of these block grant funds and made recommendations to the city council. The board also reviewed the operations of certain senior housing operations in the city. One of the more interesting programs we worked on during my tenure was the downtown rehabilitation program. I would like to see the program expanded to assist business owners in cleaning up their buildings." - Barry

Barry’s Picks!

A list of Barry’s favorite, or in some cases least favorite, places to visit in the South Bay:

  • Unique place in the South Bay – The Lomita Railroad Museum of course!
  • Best dinerThe Hot N Tot. It’s nice that we have more breakfast places in town now.
  • Worst intersection – Crenshaw and Lomita – lots of competition for this award unfortunately
  • Prettiest garden – Walking around town, I see a lot of them. Still, I’ll try to pick some favorites. So far, there are a couple of great ones on Lucille I like and a beautiful rose garden on Via Madonna in the Rolling Ranchos neighborhood. I also like the Lord of the Rings garden on 254th St. off Narbonne.
  • Best low-water garden – There are so many more than just a few years ago! They range from native chaparral to cactus gardens with lots of color. Low water doesn’t have to mean boring. I’ll have to pick a favorite. There are some on Eshelman near Lomita Blvd. that I really like.
  • Most appealing commercial building – Kudos to the South Bay Credit Union for their remodel of the building at the intersection of Narbonne and Lomita. The other three corners are in varying states of improvement. Overall, the downtown hub is much nicer than it used to be.
  • Quietest street – There are some really quiet places in town, but they made me promise I wouldn’t tell where they are!
  • Best pizzaBonello’s and Red West are both good. Bonello’s catered our wedding way back in 1990. Wow was that good!
  • Best burger – Can’t decide. Suggestions?
  • Nicest walking area – My wife and I walk around every day and sometimes twice a day. Any place with trees is nice, so the Pines areas is always good. There are many cul-de-sacs you wouldn’t normally have a reason to walk that are worth a little trip out of the way. It amazes me the diversity of construction dates on some of the streets off Pennsylvania. Some were built in the last 20 years while their neighboring homes look to be from 1930.
  • Oldest house – According to the LA County Assessor, it’s a house on Fairview in 1904. Let me know, if you know of an older one.
  • Best Italian restaurant – Black Olive (Lomita and Pennsylvania)
  • Best view spot – The south end of Eshelman Ave. Keep going from there up to Glentree. It’s a bit steep, but it’s worth it.
  • Best trees (yes, I like trees, and we have many great ones in town) – The pepper trees on Cypress
  • Worst sidewalks – Which is worse, bad sidewalks or none at all? What do you think?

“Don’t feel strange or guilty about committing yourself or working hard.”

Dr. Robert P. Biller, 2009