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Wed, Jun

No Good Reason

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK

ERIC PREVEN’S NOTEBOOK - The brawl at Van Nuys High School in the Valley that resulted in a lockdown for several hours and a number of stabbings has sparked a fresh new business idea: 

The Pitch:  Engage people with lived experience but no benefits to deliver lunches right into classrooms on LAUSD lockdown days!   

Shark: Is this idea from Mr. Ridley-Thomas’ economic incubator program?  

Smart Speaker: Yes. How often are schools in LA on lockdown?

County Counsel, anonymous:  We seem to have slid off of the topic Mr. Preven.

Smart Speaker:   On Tuesday, the progressive icon, Hilda Solis, is moving forward at pace with an Exclusive Negotiating Agreement ENA with Century Affordable Development, Inc. (Century), a California nonprofit public benefit corporation for the development of County-owned property located at 1321 N. Mission Road, Los Angeles, CA 90033.

Bienestar Restorative Care Village, an affordable and supportive housing project (Project) will consist of 292 units for low-income seniors and people experiencing homelessness, comprised of 195 studios, 87 one-bedrooms, 8 two two-bedrooms and two manager’s units. 

The RFP solicitation was issued on October 19, 2021.  The ENA between the County and Century was executed on November 28, 2022, with an initial term of 180 days and two optional 90-day extensions, which have been exercised.

Smart Speaker: So, it’s been Two Years and now Solis is authorizing an extension of an additional 120 days. That’s four months —  is this for real?

I remember the blinding speed the Hilda Solis the Recuperative Care Center (RCC) happened.  

That was one building yielding 96 beds, and Residential Treatment Programs (RTP), and four buildings yielding 64 beds.

And whatever happened to the Watt Companies Metro Project, I’m sure Alan Yochelson formerly of the Public Integrity Division remembers that one, we can ask Holly J. Mitchell — 

“Get him out of here.” 

Step Right Into Office:

If you have political aspirations and satisfy the requirements of the seat definitions, why not consider serving on the Board of the Studio City Neighborhood Council? 

It’s not necessarily fun, but it is well worth the investment of time and allows a qualified individual to cross ‘community engagement’ off their bucket list.  Well, not cross off, but check the box.

The term for these Board members runs through June 2025.

If it’s a good fit email the new Board President Chip Meehan and or the Board Secretary, Adele Slaughter and declare your intent. 

This is the NC board that recently disbanded over a late-breaking revelation that an applicant whom the board had approved to serve on the board, was on Meghan’s list.

When the Board learned this information, they quit en masse and recently reconstituted, minus the chap they expectorated.  

Also, absent, which surprised many, was the past President, Scott Mandel. Thanks for all the giggles. 

At the upcoming meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 15, the board will scrutinize and kick the old tires on some new applicants. 

Hopefully, the board will post the candidate information on the website, or email them to the big list so that the community can help vett our local leaders.  Here’s what’s on available:

Residential Homeowner (1 open seat)

Business Representative (3 open seats) A Business Representative is a person who (i) legally provides goods or services for compensation in Studio City

Independent Contractor (1 open seat) An Employee/Independent Contractor is a person who legally provides goods or services for compensation in Studio City

Ordinarily, Studio City Slickers, as we are sometimes known, would tune in to virtual proceedings of the board grilling the new applicants. 

Teleconferencing for Neighborhood council meetings was up on Tuesday… we'll see!

The Coldwater Curve which has been called the Lingenbrink Shops designed by RM Schindler link

 

No Good Reason:

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  Okay, that’s going to be three minutes for items 10, 21 through 28, followed by a minute for general public comment.  Please go ahead, please stay on topic. 

Smart Speaker: Yeah, I mean this is a massive agenda.  I want to note that it is actually a 39-page agenda with only 28 items and that is because this is the season when Avak likes to fill the agenda full of confusing clauses —

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  Let’s stick with the items Mr. Preven.

Smart Speaker:  The only purpose is to prevent the public and speakers from seeing what is actually happening.  So, I am going to try to help.  First of all I think it’s a great idea — Fauble, finally you’ve done something right — to authorize neighborhood councils to use teleconferencing.  I mean, what a great and simple way to connect to the community, to get people to look at the material from their desk and call in and participate.

A lovely indigenous dance performance during the city council meeting to commemorate Indigenous Heritage Month. 

 

This way any caller can give the feedback directly to Soto-Martinez or Hernandez, or to the neighborhood councils just mentioned, who are doing such a great job of connecting and bringing people into the process.  P is for Participation.

A great idea would be to try to apply the same structure to the city council committee meetings. The little fiefdoms.  Where instead of taking on comments at the committee level you choke down the willing participants by denying virtual testimony.  There is no calling in, for no good reason.  

No good reason. 

We’ve done a deep dive investigation, we looked at it on In Depth on KNX … the reaction?  They deep-sized In Depth, last week.

RIP, Feldman. Thanks for all the stories.  Not so much for the Garcetti cuddling… but well done.

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  We seem to have slid off of the topic Mr. Preven, can we please get back on the items clearly.

Smart Speaker:  Neighborhood councils and teleconferencing and the ability to meet virtually is on the agenda, OK. 

Thank you for that. 

I think it was Traci Park who said, “That’s a tough act to follow”… after the tiny dancer - who was fabulous. Hats off, if that’s appropriate to the entire Dia de los Muertos recognition group.  And it’s interesting because I wrote about Rudy Ortega — you can call me prescient, Fauble, just don’t interrupt me — and today Rudy showed up.  He’s the Harvard Westlake Tailgater who sold the Studio City indigenous people down the river… highly irritating.

Rudy Ortega supports the Harvard-Westlake Bad River Plan seeking to commandeer open space in Studio City.

 

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  Okay, we are not on the agenda, so let’s go to General public comment — 

Smart Speaker:  What are you talking about? — Hang on, hang on, let me get to the accessible housing trust and the appointed court monitor, OK?  Do you want to quibble as to whether that’s kosher during these high holy days?   Can I say that? 

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  You’re in General. 

Smart Speaker:  I’m not ready for General Public comment yet, I wanted to take all my time because I was shut out yesterday by Mr. Krekorian, who never called my number.

Yes, he’s got my number.

I note that the Doug Haines appeal was overturned, that’s awkward.  

I don’t know folks know that Tria Blu Wakpa the mayor’s appointee to the Cultural Affairs Commission, for the term ending June 30, 2028, is an extremely artsy person.

She received a Ph.D. and M.A. from the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from San Diego State University, and a B.A. in English with an option in Film. 

She graduated summa cum laude from Oklahoma State University.  That’s top of the heap. Her research and teaching combine community-based, Indigenous, and feminist methodologies with critical race theories to examine the politics and practices of dance and other movement modes—such as theatrical productions, yoga, and basketball.

Smart Speaker:  Basketball?!  Listen, Fauble, Prop K is not for Krekorian. 

I am not happy about the Prop K item on this agenda where you are glancing around at less well-to-do communities to see if Krekorian and Blumenfield or Raman now can steal the Prop K money from the less well-off districts. Why?

Not sure, but Paul Krekorian Wendy Greuel, and now Nithya Raman, are posing as fake environmentalists by sticking a giant high school regulation gymnasium in an open space — 

Confused Speaker:  Is this instead of the Harvard Westlake open space raid? 

Smart Speaker:  “In addition to”… why the “f” do we need all this athletic complex, BS — 

Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Fake Chair:  Mr. City Attorney, I can’t tell what topic this person is on. 

Smart Speaker:  Yeah, I’m on Prop K. The LA Steering Committee for Kids. 

City Attorney, Strefan Fauble:  Thank you, Mr. Preven.  Next Speaker.

Next Speaker:…To be clear, I absolutely echo Eric Preven’s comment. If you are enabling additional and greater and broader public participation at the neighborhood council level why are you not simultaneously promoting the same at the city council committee meetings?

Very often, as Smart Speaker was saying, the city council agendas are often overloaded and often hidden in these committee meetings that we and people can’t get to, so, how can they participate? Because by the time the items get to the city council, you are basically blocking them.  

So, I appreciate this effort to allow teleconferencing at NC meetings, but I remain skeptical because you are not enabling the City Council committee meetings. 

Never again, again:

As the world's pledges of ''never again’’… rise up around the world, in New York, a group of 238 Holocaust survivors posed for portraits organized by the Auschwitz Jewish Center Foundation.  They’ve been calling for the release of the more than 200 people captured by Hamas militants and held hostage by the terror organization. 

Each survivor held a “Kidnapped” poster, drawing a sharp connection between the horrors of World War II and the current fiasco.

Our Purpose Beyond Flight: Delta Airlines

Delta Airlines' mission statement is nice and easy. “Connect the World. Reflect on the World. Respect the World. Our purpose is beyond flight." 

Jim from Axios should reach out about a consultation with Delta to shorten that down. Do you really need to repeat world three times? No.

But the primary purpose is clear… to connect with different people and show them respect as their passengers.  All aboard. 

A reader writes…

“I have a complaint about Delta Airlines that I can’t get an appropriate response to. I’ve lost over $2,000 because of the unwritten rules of passports. I was turned away from my flight to Lisbon a couple of weeks ago because my passport expires in January. 

Apparently, Portugal has a rule, that “You are required to be in possession of a U.S. passport, valid for a minimum of three months beyond the length of your stay.” 

Well… when were you going to tell me? Shouldn’t an airline selling a ticket to Portugal, be sure their passengers are able to comply with the rules, by having them posted for them, at purchase?

Smart Speaker: Yes.

Surely, Delta has some responsibility to share this information.  Furthermore, once denied and crestfallen, Delta said I would get a refund for the difference, so booked a flight to Los Angeles instead. I came to learn the airline charged me even more for the second ticket, not to mention all the money paid out for various accommodations in Portugal that had to be canceled with penalties.   Delta Customer Service has been silent. 

Smart Speaker:  Delta Airlines, please come forward and make this right.  This information should be flagged by carriers who sell tickets to passengers.   

Freaky Friday: 

Council Districts, 10 (Hutt), 12 (Lee), and 15 (McCosker)  are seeking resources to increase park patrolling by Park Rangers and related matters.  

The Board of Parks Commissioners could certainly use resources to answer CPRA requests timely.   One hopes the Commissioners are paying attention to all the Prop K maneuvering as we near the horrific and soon-to-be derailed plan to destroy the Studio City Recreation Center.   DO NOT DO IT!

Kudos to the Black Planners of Los Angeles (BPLA) who will be able to register as a Qualified Minority Organization, pursuant to the Employee Relations Resolution No.1.  [That resolution can be looked up.]

Nithya Raman has taken a shine to Daeco Management, LLC to allow for continuing homeless housing consultation services in Council District 4.  Interest level: HIGH

Only $49,999 to put out some margaritas for the Dia de los Muertos festival at Pacoima City Hall. 

Smart Speaker:  Does the NC actually have to pay to use the facility?

“Your time has expired.”

Fencing the "one - five" is a Tim Mcosker priority, so we will look forward to a status update on the Rosecrans Recreation Center fence project, and the necessary actions to ensure timely completion.

FINALLY, retention bonuses all around for Assistant Environmental Compliance Inspectors serving on CARE/CARE+ teams.  It's about time. 

 

(Eric Preven is a longtime community activist and is a contributor to CityWatch. The opinions of Mr. Preven are not necessarily those of CityWatchLA.com.)