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Tue, May

Campaign Dogs

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK - Sean Murphy called-in to the City Council meeting pissed that a restaurant near him had announced they were going cashless. "I do my business in Sherman Oaks," he said, It seemed like Sean was prepared to take his business elsewhere. Next speaker.  

Council member Traci Park struck a nice note, trying what works re: the adoption of homeless animals. Namely, following through and trotting them out during council meetings. 

 

 

 

The Board of Supes recently resumed plying the public with puppies as well. The concept is the masses prefer to watch fuzzy critters getting homes than Krekorian and Fauble essentially trying to arrest people. 

On Friday, Council member Traci Park of CD11, lured a CD1 staffer to adopt the dog or cat.  Excellent.  

But no warmth for the abusive language Krekorian uses with the public, and no thank you to the false and misleading suggestion that Herb J. Wesson and Paul Koretz were adopting dogs out weekly.  Not in Council. Au contraire. I've attended as many city council meetings as almost anyone, and adoptions were not weekly or even monthly.   

The council was too busy ramming through Huizar, Englander motions and affixing Building & Safety liens to the homes of the poorest Angelenos. Ray Chan once worked there... 

Wesson and Koretz are credited with presiding over the shameful system of neglect that would tarnish any badge.  

People now know that the City leans heavily on volunteers to walk dogs, do laundry, and complete an array of other tasks at its animal shelters. To discover that dogs were not being walked, left to rot in their own waste was horrifying.  

Apparently, media scrutiny of the shelters exacerbated tensions between Animal Services staff and some volunteers, who faced dismissal if they publicly criticized the department.   What's the word for that? Retaliation. 

Wait, are we talking about the City of Los Angeles Animal Services?  Or the County’s Animal Care and Control?    

Both.    

The County's group handles 45 contract cities with a combined total population of over three million residents, so not so different than the City's footprint.    

The Board of Supervisors trotted out a Christmas 2022 request for a full accounting of what led to the use of euthanasia on a 3 -month old puppy, Bowie, at the Baldwin Park Animal Care Center and a plan to prevent similar incidents.   

The key question is, why did the euthanasia numbers in the county double from 14% to 30% of animals year over year?  Egads!  

The Board bravely called for a 90-day report back with a 5-year plan to decrease the number and percentage of animals euthanized with built-in, annual benchmarks, broken down by species and animal care center.    

Going forward it is important to see how the county and the city deploy their resources to avoid so much killing.    

How about a joint powers item dedicated to Animals, or should we just address it during the ONE ITEM City budget hearings?  

Gender Corrections: 

The Los Angeles City Council Friday called for the drafting of an ordinance that would remove gender-specific references, like "chairman," from the city's municipal code.

 

  

Tech Tok

The tech sector is having a turbulent period.  I read this week that Microsoft is laying off ten thousand employees.  Last week they were more upbeat announcing that Bing, the perennial second favorite search engine to Google, has developed AI technology to compete in earnest.  Some sharpy from Silicon valley said, there was tragedy and pain in the loss of jobs in the tech industry, but the silver lining, sometimes, out of tragedy and pain comes innovation. So, kind of like --, sorry for throwing 10,000 people overboard into the North Sea, but the good news is some might swim to shore and survive and...innovate..   

Thank you. And, of course, F*&K you.  

It was very upsetting to read that the Skid Row Housing Trust which runs 29 buildings containing housing for poor Angelenos, has run into serious financial trouble.  

According to lots of sources including the LA Times, properties have not been properly maintained and we've all known about it for years. The excuses as to why this has happened should be carefully examined.   

Allegations that residents are psychotic and destroy the place could be part of it, but nobody thinks the maintenance of such properties is easy. Now, having built some newer facilities, the Trust is looking to offload the stinkers on... anyone?  

Miguel Santana, who presided over HHH oversight before jumping ship to run the LA County Fair for nearly half a million in compensation, before shuffled back over to the Weingart Foundation, where he arranged for $200,000 to keep the mismanaged Skid Row Trust afloat.  Thanks.  

LA Family housing and other providers are poking at the properties to see if there is any cherry-picking to be done.   

Disgusting.  

Why did Building and Safety not take action over the years of degradation?  I wonder if the Times looked at all the complaints.   

We certainly heard horror show after horror show in the public comment which is why Paul Krekorian and Strefan Fauble are constantly ejecting human beings from City meetings.  Disgruntled humans.  

Several speakers were extremely upset when a particular critic was attacked by the President. Several Angelenos called out Krekorian's sarcasm, "have a nice day" as he was ordering sergeants to frog march out a protestor, in front of Staffer B's teenage guests, who had come down to praise the man who went to Las Vegas with Mitch Englander.  

Sometimes, people have to be removed, I guess, but performing for the crowd is... OFF.  

It took a while to understand what was going on, but finally, we figured it out.  President Krekorian was cleansing the room of critics, for a major speech by him calling for the President who is busy to find the time to take action against the Azerbaijani government for cutting off the Laichin corridor.    

The public speakers were sharp and committed and told a horrible story of devastation.  After they all spoke, Krekorian unfurled a barn buster.    

Areen Ibranossian, a consultant who cut his eye-teeth in the Villaraigosa administration, who minimized his own service to CP Krekorian during the shady Mitch Englander years on Linkedin, told the Times that Krekorian was seriously considering a run for Adam Schiff's congressional seat.   

Fancy.  What about Feuer?  He'll very likely roll out that campaign dog.  

Tech Sector Penthouse Plan + RFP

Maybe the top floor of every dilapidated affordable housing building should be adopted as offices by a major tech company.  

This way the company can fix up the building below them and ensure that it remains in decent shape, as they come to work every day in their Teslas.  

Naturally, caretakers with lived experience could be engaged to assist.  Let's try to skip middlemen like Urban Alchemy, or maybe Urban Alchemy should sponsor a penthouse!  

The tech sector might respond, "No, thanks, Mr. Preven. We'd rather go to a nice new city where we can build a state-of-the-art everything, including an electric charging station. in every pot." 

But I would fire back, "We understand, but frankly you can't get the vibrancy of Los Angeles in one of your Carolinas. And you don't have the speeches we have from our local leaders touting the Olympics."   

"We're good, we'll be in Charlottesville." 

I would call the bluff, "Nice try. We have celebrities and Sofi stadium and Crypto Arena... you want to ride to a Dodger Game in an aerial tram with hundreds of other fans, It could be a reality. " 

"Honestly,  Mr. Preven,  an hour and a half to get to the Hollywood Bowl from Santa Monica before a 1-mile uphill hike is the reality."    

The Tree of Injustice

Tree Drama is surging this week as the boy wonder, Judge Mitchell Beckloff, who hopefully is feeling better by now made a ruling to preserve 13,000 or 18,000 trees, by blocking the implementation of a flawed sidewalk repair program.  We need to build around roots and save old trees. 

This program was known as the Krekorian who is busy maybe running for congress, while gently wrapping up millions and millions more in shady settlements. The trees will have to count on Blumenfield to bring the power of the mighty council to bear. 

But he's busy jacking up the fees at DCA, the Department of Cultural Affairs, jacking the fee from $5 to $12 to see Watts Towers or a shitty play at the HollyHock house.  Cost recovery is interesting, but how about de-staff, commissioning low-cost high-quality work and charging smaller amounts for admission, or making it free? See the tirade about Lucas Narrative Museum of FREE ADMITTANCE.   

We don't pay to use the libraries, yet.  DCA should have the same mantra.... join in on the discussion, not bring a credit card.  

I know of a very interesting Rudolph Schindler Letter project that is ripe and ready for a brief - not endless - development period and launch!  

FREE, probono book by award-winning author and windbag.  

Mark Ridley-Thomas could be persuaded by one of his corporate cronies at Sony or certainly Netflix or a whole cornucopia of...parties in nice restaurants examining the intersection of the arts and their business interests with a menu of sky-is-the-limit possibilities. Vibrant! 

And nothing would prevent Tiffany Haddish, who has appeared at more city council meetings than council member Traci Park, so far, from helping to raise money for the Department of Cultural Affairs.  Maybe she can star in a series of that title.   Funny! The kooky acts and tiny budget...jacking the prices.  

Or frankly, when I think of irritating fundraising tied to cultural work, KPCC and KCRW are the market leaders, and I have a very impressive mug collection to prove it. 

NEXT DOOR: 

Last night, actually early this morning about 2. 30 am I was pepper sprayed... See more  

When I read the above message in my email, I wondered briefly, was this a police-involved spraying?  So I clicked and learned (and have summarized here for clarity)...   

Last night, actually early this morning about 2.30 am I was pepper sprayed in the face. My car was parked on the west side of Laurel Ave where I live.  I went to the car to get an extra set of keys when a vehicle approaches me and asked, "Excuse me, do you… "    

As I turned around, the passenger blinded me with a very intense light followed by pepper spray.  I can’t begin to explain the burning and intense pain I experienced as I stumbled away and started SCREAMING.  The pain lasted for hours.   

The police eventually showed up and, if you can believe it, started interrogating me.  Asking me a series of ridiculous questions in the middle of my panic about being attacked, insinuating, that I did something wrong or might be the perpetrator.   

They were disregarding everything I was actually saying and so, in a way, LAPD contributed to my desperation. They didn't even tell me what to do to alleviate the intense burning pain in my eyes, which were still burning at six in the morning.    

To me, what is absolutely crazy is ... where were my neighbors?  I was screaming in agony and yet not one among them, who seem happy to jump into action and complain about one another if television is perceived as too loud, did a thing.    

Not one person acknowledged or checked in on me as I was screaming in agony at the top of my lungs, after being attacked.      

I now feel that I could be murdered in front of my own apartment and nobody from the building would bother to come out to see what's going on, rescue me, or call the police or management.     

It is hard to understand how nobody took any action at all, as they do when the volume on a television in the building is perceived as too high.    

Next ONEgeneration:  

Speaking of not-for-profits, there was a 0-dollar lease for thirty years extended to ONEgeneration. 

Well... not counting all the other contracts the city has with ONEgeneration.  Disclosure: my children delivered food, which meant prepared food for delivery at their site in Van Nuys for public service credit years ago. They were nice. 

ONEgeneration began as a modest and focused storefront senior center initiated, operated, and directed by visionary volunteers in 1978, including Jenna Hauss, the President & CEO, 17400 Victory Boulevard Van Nuys, CA 91406 [email protected]

The only beef was that there was nothing in the item before the council to make it clear that the city has multiple other contracts for many services, provided to the tune of many millions or tens of millions over the years.  If you go to ClerkConnect and search ONEGeneration it is overwhelming how many agreements and extensions. Transparency but confusion.  As Diane Von Furstenberg said, "You cannot fake clarity."  

Multipurpose, Social Services, Nutrition and Transportation Project for the Southwest Valley Aging Service Area ($201,666) 

The Evidence-Based Program and the Senior Emergency Meal Program for the Southwest Valley ASA. ($75,000) and ($2,927,311)

With multiple contracts with different numbers for the same type of services ($60,000) and ($2,603,925) 

This contract is for 36 months with a total of $2,012,887 thru Feb 2025 ($2,315,804)  

The contractor shall process rental assistance payments to each participating ADU homeowner on a monthly basis and shall work with other permanent housing organizations to connect seniors to available programs and services. 

Also... 

  1. Brush clearance; 
  2. Maintenance staff (including pension, health, vacation, sick leave or other benefits); 
  3. Artificial turf maintenance, repairs, and replenish; 
  4. Restroom maintenance and repairs; and 
  5. Maintenance/custodial/janitorial supplies, materials, or equipment.  

Thank you. 

 

(Eric Preven is a longtime community activist and is a contributor to CityWatch. The opinions expressed by Eric Preven are solely his and not the opinions of CityWatch)