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LA’s Daily News has a Trick Promotion Going

THE CITY--The Daily News has a promotion VOTE for the best of!  The best of what?  

They leave it open ended to get you to click through. Evidently, they think what readers want is to spend time filling out surveys about their favorite things: hamburgers, hikes...homeless oversight agencies. 

Back when HHH was being masterfully teed up, I thought this guy Jack Humphreville was a real naysayer.  

As a courtesy, I'd attended a Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils [VANC] meeting in the back conference room of a Sherman Oaks hospital and the special guest for the night was Jose Huizar.  

It was standing room only as Huizar made the case that to really get this done [house the homeless] we needed to build permanent supportive housing.  He was mesmerizing and humble and everyone wanted to be cooperative. Even little old republican ladies were moved to tears, "he's so handsome and successful."  

Huizar was firing on all cylinders at the time during the now historic roll out and pack out of "millions" and "millions" in luxury condos and other optimistic but not necessary legal initiatives.  

The Judge recently granted him an extension to the middle of 2022 to review the enormous trove of evidence against him and the mayor and the rest of the thieves at city hall--  

"Sir, you're disrupting the meeting." 

As they frog march me out, "Where did United States Attorney Nick Hanna go?"  

Your honor, we need him back.  

HHH

Turns out Jack was right, HHH has been hard and homelessness is unfortunately a burgeoning sector at both City and County hall. 

Skip Miller, a partner with the Miller Barondess law firm who represents the county told the Times, “The county remains 100% committed to this fight and working with the city and other stakeholders, with or without a lawsuit,”   

Flexible.  

Skip is talking about the LA Alliance lawsuit -- the current proposal is to have each LA City council district house 60% of their homeless -- even if only a snap-together garden shed at a State Beach in the Pacific Palisades. 

The heavy lifting on brokering the deal to git r done, was conducted in a four-hour pay-per-view-only closed-session at city hall. 

Mike Bonin from council district 11 is hysterical. If he does not get a consent decree, it is possible he will break down and cry, and then run for Mayor. 

Garcetti has given the smug impression that Judge Carter and he are on the same page, because frankly and arrogantly, "He gets me."    

Spokesmen for both Mayor Eric Garcetti and City Atty. Michael Feuer declined to comment on  pending "friendly fire" litigation. 

Louis "Skip" Miller is always happy to talk to the Times, “We don’t need a lawsuit to do our job. We’re doing it.” 

As the county's top enforcer Skip does need a few lawsuits to do his job, just not that many, because the county won't share what they pay him.   

Still, not every case has to result in court or any actual legal work:  Sachi Hamai, the former LA county CEO didn't even have to file a claim to collect her $1.5 million for voluntarily stepping down from the United Way board and other unspeakable harassments. 

"Here's your hat, Skip, what's your hurry?" 

Deleon:

Kevin Deleon is much more than a Huizar replacement for district residents from CD14, he's also a humanitarian.  

“Skid row is no place for women and for children,” he told the Times. “I made it very clear that I don’t want women and children in skid row." 

Honorable. Handsome. Heroic. 

I'm worried that the following sentence may have already become a meme, but FYI, there is a cologne called Deleon.  I'll check with David Tristan in Ethics to see if anyone sees a conflict.  

"I want them in Silverlake. I want them in Echo Park. I want them in Hancock Park. I want them in Sherman Oaks.” 

Deleon was talking about distributing the homeless women and children to the places that may be in line to get a Gelson's or an Erewhon market.   He was shirtless and there was a sun shower with a rainbow in the distance. 

Listening to Deleon heap praise on Monica Rodriguez the other day for her scrape-out-the-homeless-and-install-an-electric-fence program, you could sort of imagine, even she, the hard-ass "Staffer Bff" and daughter of a firefighter, was blushing.    

Deleon comes on very strong and circles back to finish what he started (swoon here)! Spritz cologne! 

Incidentally, let's post Deleon's access number in case we come across an unhoused woman in his district whose ready to join him in ... Silverlake, Hancock Park... etc.   

There are 1,000's of them tk.  I tried to look this up and was directed to the LAHSA website. 

It's impressive.   

Myriad different ways to slice and dice the crisis of our times.   

I noted the Submission Deadline on the face page of April 26, 2021, 2:00 PM for a Request for Information  [RFI] for providers who might want to help provide project roomkey/covid-19 shelter meals.    

I was obsessing about what Heidi Marston, the Executive Director of LAHSA, had stated recently, that "We can end homelessness and how do we know this? Because we created it. Policy choices and underinvestment brought us to where we are today?"  

Underinvestment? 

The  LA Times always struggles to describe sources appropriately and once referred to me as "a critic of the body camera selection process" when I'd help to expose that Mitchell Englander had been gallivanting and fundraising with Taser International executives in Arizona without the permission of Gil Cedillo, mid-bodycam-procurement.  Cedillo, who once cracked up in council describing how Englander wore a MAGA hat in Mexico, had been trying to ban Arizona from doing business with the greatest city in America, with the greatest sheriff in America. 

As "a critic of LAHSA procurements," I wondered would this RFI be more likely to alienate providers of food service rather than attract them? 

A foot soldier in Lisa Sarkin's war over Studio City who works for a big time entertainment program, once told me that if you want to get more flies, always remember:  "Honey gets more flies than vinegar."  

"This RFI should not be misinterpreted as an official offer to enter into a contractual agreement. Instead, information received through responses to this RFI may be used by LAHSA in preparation of a Request for Proposal (RFP). Alternatively, LAHSA may also take no further action after reviewing responses to this RFI. 

Sounds promising.  

The requirements:   

An LA county public health permit. You must provide 3 meals a day. The meals must be labeled with more nutritional information than conceivable.  At least two of the three meals have to be microwaveable and everything has to be disposable. 

LAHSA will provide no less than 24-hour notice for urgent meals and supply requests. [Yikes] 

For payment, simply create and submit a delivery ticket for each load of meals dropped off and submit it as an invoice. BUT: you must have a certificate of food service management handling and sanitation training.  [Umm...] 

If these conditions appeal to you, feel free to send a ten-page letter of interest [LOI] not funny, but looks like LOL. 

And be sure you use a 12-point font, with margins no less than 1" on all sides.   Submissions must be written in English. [Record Scratch Sound here]  What?   

How about food trucks? [Spritz, Spritz!]  

Triple A --  AAA

It refers to the county's bond rating, back when they had public meetings you could hear Sachi Hamai boasting to Mark Ridley-Thomas about the incredibly good credit rating the county had earned, year after year, even as we drifted into the morass of homelessness.  

It's a noble war, and Kerry Morrison, who took her turn as a Durfee Foundation grantee among all of the other greats:  

Solomon Rivera (Harris Dawson's chief of staff), Leslie Heimov, Maria Cabildo x2, Father Boyle x2, Susan Burton, Shane Goldsmith, Torie Osborn (Sheila Kuehl's Deputy) Stephanie Klasky Gamer (of LA Family Housing), Kathy Feng (of California Common Cause),Patti Giggans x2, even Planning and Land Use replacement council member, Marquisse Harris Dawson.   

Even Joel Jacinto, who abruptly resigned in January 2019, was recognized way back when. He was a member of the powerful Los Angeles Board of Public Works, which oversees major infrastructure and environmental decisions for Mayor Eric Garcetti.  

Morrison couldn't remember where she'd sent her passport to get a visa, and so was sympathetic, when Amy Perkins Special Director, Housing Central Command told us at the HHH Civilian Oversight committee meeting,  how proud she was that clients and case managers were FINALLY able to get copies of their lost DMV ID's without having to go to the bricks and mortar DMV office.  

Kerry understood personally how hard it was to send your ID in the mail.  

She made this point herself, it's easier to send your Passport to an embassy for a visa for an international empathy mission, than it is to put your social security card in the mail to qualify to get out of a tent.   

The fact that DMV could be accessed remotely was treated by the HHH panel something like the discovery of a new lifesaving vaccine.  The only difference is the DMV renewal option does not save a life, it saves a trip to the DMV.   

Still, we are all proud of this outcome, and I don't want to unperk, the Amy Perkins, but Triple A has been doing this for years.  Still, credit where credit is due, this  may be most  impressive accomplishment by LAHSA in years. 

OK to stop here.   

You guys, "I'm laughing so I don't cry."

On Friday, half past four, is time to sneak in a little HHH oversight.  

I was hoping in this article to break down the HHH meeting because my brother and I wrote several articles urging the mayor to make recordings of the oversight hearings available on the website and though there are not yet posted (it's been years), Zoom has made the recording much more tolerable.  

You still have to request a link and access, so I did, and it should be public. 

I tried to call in from my car:   Note: This is embarrassing.   

HHH has a  Meeting ID:  992 2963 3203   with eleven digits.  

I had to pull over and self-administer a neurological exam before I figured it out.  All the other IDs are ten. 

I finally was able to access the chat, but by that time,  they'd decided they'd heard enough from the public.  

Mike Heinrich of City Attorney gave Claire the authorization to... lower the hand. 

Public Comment:

I wanted to share what I noticed on the State's new site.  Another aggregator site with amazing useless Statistics  

I wanted to maybe hear from Pete White who said about the possible Alliance deal “a smoke-filled backroom deal, where property owners and politicians sat around negotiating away houseless people’s civil rights.” 

I wanted to share that service providers across California gave assistance to more than 280,000 homeless people — way higher than the most official homeless population count of 162,000.    [Is this helpful at all?] 

Among the people experiencing homelessness who accessed services in 2020: 41% reported a disabling condition 9% were veterans 17% reported experiences with domestic violence, 22% were under the age of 18.  But for some reason LAHSA has no Peace Over Violence contracts. 

Despite representing 5.6% of California’s total population, Black or African Americans represent 31% of those accessing homelessness services.   

Presentation: 

Instead, I heard a presentation from LAHSA.  The team had taken a snapshot of three of these HHH buildings opened before the COVID pandemic. Path Metro Villas II, Residences on Main, and 88th and Vermont.   

A lot of talk about how long it took to fill vacancies, once construction completion had occurred.  

The best-case scenario a client is qualified, before the housing is ready, so that when it is ready. Presto, they move in.  That means there is no delay.  

That's the preferred approach. "We call that the negative 51-day approach," said, Tory Kanhayuwa Permanent housing inventory coordinator.  

That doesn't sound that positive.  

"A trend that we are aware of, the application process is burdensome."  

Tory and team were concerned frankly about CES functionality, about services getting to people and long wait times.  "We have 30 doc specialists," working on the fact that we have too many confusing categories. So, when we try to put a client into a unit, the funding sources to make that possible require a certain type of client.   

Go on. 

"General homeless + disability  is different than Veterans; mental health,  And both of those categories are different than Youth + Chronic; w/ a side of General Homeless.  

And that, believe it or not is still a different set of requirements than, Youth + Mental Health.  

The problem with this is that extensive eligibility requirements mean, it's taken much longer to lease up. 

You can start to appreciate why Mayor Garcetti blocks easy access to these meetings.  

They are a special form of torture. 

Analysis

The thing that caught me completely off guard was that this entire logjam of bullshit was the precise reason CES or the coordinated entry system was created, to coordinate entry to the system. 

No matter how much money we pour into the CES, like a volcano, more homeless people keep shooting out the top. 

So to hear that application barriers and difficulties locating clients for necessary signatures and documents were the precise obstacles, was infuriating.  

Commissioner Bernice Noflin gets credit for asking if it would it be possible to come back quarterly,  further Illuminating the bottlenecks.  Finally, she asked,  "are these three buildings at capacity?" 

LAHSA did not know the occupancy rate.   

Before last call, the team discussed a sneaky Revolver fund to accommodate the $40,000,000 from the mayor's challenge awarding LA Family Housing et al. mo' money.  

Kerry, lulled into the sense that Koretz and I were very likely already lighting the candles for Shabas, popped the question, "Someone running, had said $550k a unit. Can we get "coherent talking points... more like $140,000. And we are going to be seeing the fruits of this voter support in late 2021, 22, 23..." 

Defending HHH she went on, we can say, "during election we never really explained... how complicated this type of financing model would be..." but we are going to have nine or ten thousand units that will last for decades, beautifully designed additions to the neighborhoods.   

"Political rhetoric is starting to crop up again," she said.    

(Eric Preven is a longtime community activist and is a contributor to CityWatch.)

-cw