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Strip club owner runs for neighborhood council

The owner and two employees of a controversial Canoga Park strip club are running for neighborhood council.
March 14, 2014 12:00:00 AM PDT
The owner and two employees of a controversial Canoga Park strip club are running for neighborhood council. Normally a neighborhood council election doesn't get a lot of news coverage, but in this race three of the candidates work at the Xposed Gentlemen's Club. One is the owner, Brad Barnes. Avi Feinstein and Chris Stark are the other two candidates.

Barnes says he's not running to make an issue of his business. He says it's about the issues that affect the entire community.

"I want to be part of the decision-making," said Barnes.

Barnes believes money is being wasted by City Hall, money that should go to making the Canoga Park area better. The things he wants to work on are not as sexy as his business.

"There's way too many potholes, the streets should be fixed. It's about banners being everywhere. I'm pro-business, but some of these businesses are out of control," said Barnes.

But some people are concerned that three people from one single business could get on the board.

"I don't think it matters what kind of business it is, or which business it is, but to have three people who are under one payroll to be on a neighborhood council that only has 25 people on their board of directors anyway, it seems a bit heavy," said local real estate agent Arminta Robinson-Chabot.

Robinson-Chabot is a real estate agent who lives in Canoga Park.

"Gentleman's clubs businesses can have a negative impact," Robinson-Chabot said.

Xposed has been in Canoga Park for more than a decade. When it first opened the area's zoning allowed strip clubs. Last year the business was almost closed after the LAPD complained there were excessive calls coming from the area near the club.

But the city zoning department ruled that since the calls were in different areas there was no way of knowing if they were connected to the club.

"This is a legal business. We don't have any issues," said Barnes. "There's no problems here. Any problems, they were a year old, and we haven't had a call for service in a long time."

The election is on Sunday between 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. at the Canoga Park Community Center.


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