Media

Mayor GarcettiON Saturday's 6.4 Magnitude Earthquake in Taiwan

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims in Taiwan after this weekend's tragic earthquake. California has the largest concentration of Taiwanese immigrants in the nation. Today, we all join our Taiwanese-American community here in Los Angeles to mourn this tragic loss of life. When we witness horrific incidents like this, we are reminded of the immense destruction a major earthquake can cause. As we grieve, we must also remember how critical it is to prepare for the next big earthquake here at home, and take action now to protect Angelenos' lives and property."  — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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18056

Mayor Eric Garcetti Announces Opening of New Worksource Portal in Southeast Los Angeles; Investment of $2.4 Million on New Job Training Initiatives

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LOS ANGELES—Mayor Eric Garcetti celebrated the opening of a new WorkSource Portal today in Southeast Los Angeles that will bring enhanced job-search services to South Los Angeles residents.

Mayor Garcetti also announced that the city will invest $2.4 million in new job-training initiatives to help struggling Angelenos find work in high-demand industries. The Mayor was joined by Councilmember Curren Price, Workforce Development Board President Charlie Woo, and city workforce representatives. This announcement is consistent with Mayor Garcetti's focus on job and career development, which is essential to lifting people out of poverty, revitalizing neighborhoods and expanding economic opportunities to all communities.

"For those who are having a challenging time in this competitive job market, help is on the way," said Mayor Garcetti. "The Portal's full-time staff will work with Angelenos to build résumés, practice interviews, and prepare not just for jobs, but for careers. I've worked closely with the City Council and the Workforce Development System to establish 19 WorkSource Centers and Portals, which have now connected more than 90,000 residents to employment services."

While WorkSource Centers are devoted exclusively to helping Angelenos find jobs, Portals are designed to expand the range of services delivered by existing non-profits and resource centers in high-need communities.

The Portal will be co-located at the old Weber bread factory with Homeless Outreach Program’s Integrated Care System (HOPICS). HOPICS has helped 4,000 community members with housing, health care, behavioral health and re-entry services. With the addition of a WorkSource Portal, administered by the city’s Economic & Workforce Development Department (EWDD), the factory will now offer employment resources, becoming a one-stop-shop that links residents with the services they need to succeed. EWDD oversees 17 WorkSource Centers across the city, with a growing number of Portals in key locations such as libraries and neighborhoods with high unemployment.

The new Career Resource Center at the Southeast L.A. Portal provides free computer access, which can be used to search 150,000 job openings through JobsLA.org, write resumes and submit job applications. Trained staff will also provide one-on-one career assessments and, if needed, referrals to job training. 

"The Southeast L.A. WorkSource Portal signals new hope in our community, which continues to be disproportionately affected by poverty and unemployment," said Councilmember Curren D. Price, Jr. "That is why for the past two years, I’ve actively supported local projects that promote economic opportunity, job creation and the small business community. Still, more needs to be done. We need more visionary thinking, innovative partnerships like the one we're seeing today and the community coming together to create long-term change. I look forward to collaborating with our partners so that we can provide our South L.A. residents all of the resources and assistance they need to thrive."

Mayor Garcetti also announced $2.4 million in funding to help continue revamping the city’s workforce system.

WorkSource Centers now focus career training on L.A.’s high-demand industries, including health care, construction, advanced manufacturing, green technologies and logistics. Using prior years savings of federal workforce dollars, $750,000 will be targeted to individuals reentering the job market after incarceration, another $750,000 will assist vulnerable populations, including homeless, foster youth, and transgender residents. An additional $600,000 will increase the pool of industry-driven job training, and $300,000 will be used to customize workshops for to small- and medium-sized businesses, which are the backbone of L.A.’s economy.

"L.A.'s unemployment rate is 6.2% and there are still too many people struggling to find employment, said Charlie Woo, Workforce Development Board President. "These initiatives refocus on our neediest and most under-represented Angeleno job seekers."

For more information on L.A.’s workforce development system, go to ewddlacity.com. The Southeast LA WorkSource Portal is located at 5849 Crocker St., Unit X, Los Angeles, CA 90003, or call 323-432-4399.

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18054

MAYOR GARCETTI REMINDS ANGELENOS ABOUT THE UPCOMING "101 SLOW JAM" -- FREEWAY TO BE CLOSED FOR 40 HOURS THIS WEEKEND

LOS ANGELES —  Mayor Eric Garcetti reminded the region today that the "101 Slow Jam" starts tonight. Along with representatives from the Emergency Management Department, Los Angeles Fire Department and Los Angeles Police Department, Mayor Garcetti announced details of the City’s preparations for for the "101 Slow Jam" — this weekend's 40-hour closure of a section of U.S. Route 101.

"Listening to a slow jam means never wanting it to end." said Mayor Garcetti. "But living through the '101 Slow Jam' means planning ahead or avoiding the freeway altogether. My priority is ensuring that Angelenos are aware of the closure, and ready to either follow the detours, find alternate routes, taking public transit, spend the weekend at home. Thanks to the cooperation of Angelenos across the city, our past freeway closures have been successful. If we take all it slow this weekend, this is one jam that will be over before we know it."

The 84-year old Sixth Street Viaduct is deteriorating, and will be replaced by a $445 million state-of-the-art viaduct. The 3,500-foot long viaduct was closed at the end of January, and will be demolished over the next nine months.

Construction of the new viaduct will begin on the east side of the Los Angeles River, and will be completed in late 2019. 

A 2.5-mile section of US Rte 101 will be closed from the 10/101 split to the 5/10/101 interchange just south of downtown Los Angeles. In addition, motorists travelling west on Rte 60 from the Pomona area will not be able to access US Route 101. 
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18049

Mayor Garcetti Announces Innovative Pilot Program To Conserve More Water In Historic Drought

State-of-the-art water meters in city parks offer better accuracy and advanced information on water use.
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 Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced a new water meter pilot program that will help the City conserve more water as California continues to endure the most punishing drought in state history. During the month of January, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) outfitted 28 City parks with 100 Smart Water Meters. The parks have begun using the meters to test the broader viability of the new technology.

The state-of-the-art Smart Meters offer significant technological advantages over the current industry standard. The new meters detect leaks automatically and capture detailed usage data in 15-minute intervals, which they instantly feed into a cloud-based server for real-time display online.

“Conserving water now will shape our City’s future for generations,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “We must collaborate, innovate, and use the best technology available to secure our water supplies. These Smart Meters are the critical investment we need.”

Like most water customers, the Department of Recreation and Parks currently monitors its usage through its bi-monthly bills. Improved real-time water use data will help the Department find and fix leaks faster, improve overall water management, and help the Department achieve even greater savings.

This pilot will build on Recreation and Parks’ leadership in water conservation. Last fiscal year, the Department reduced its water usage by 26 percent, enough water to serve 8,000 L.A. households for a year.

"The Department of Recreation and Parks has made tremendous progress in the area of water conservation over the past few years,” said Michael A. Shull, General Manager of the Department of Recreation and Parks. “This new smart meter pilot program will further assist us in tracking and monitoring water use across our park system on a real-time basis, which will continue to help us meet our water conservation goals while maintaining the health and safety of our parks.”

LADWP is currently testing many advanced meter technologies, and examining their compatibility with other LADWP systems. LADWP will pursue strategies for broader implementation in the coming years.

"As it is said, 'knowledge is power,' and advanced meters will give the Department of Recreation and Parks the power to optimize their water usage and minimize their utility costs," said Marty Adams, LADWP Senior Assistant General Manager of the Water System. "Rec and Parks has been a long-standing partner in conserving water, and this opens a new chapter in our joint efforts to meet the Mayor's Executive Directive No. 5 and Save the Drop.  LADWP is piloting advanced metering and other innovative technologies in strategic locations across L.A. in order to develop a set of tools that will best serve to monitor system conditions, provide real-time information to our customers, and ultimately conserve our water supply."

The launch of the pilot program comes as the City considers a citywide water rate increase proposed by LADWP. The increase will help Los Angeles invest in critically needed water infrastructure, develop more local water supplies, and expand water conservation efforts. The revenue generated by the rate increase will be crucial for testing and broadly implementing advanced metering technology.

Since the announcement of Mayor Garcetti’s Executive Directive in October 2014, L.A. residents and businesses have worked actively to conserve water, taking full advantage of LADWP’s rebate programs. Water use for the year ending December 31, 2015 was 107 gallons per capita per day (GPCD), compared to 131 GPCD for the fiscal year ending June 2014, a reduction of more than 17 percent.

For more information, and tips for conserving water, visit www.savethedropla.org.  

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18047

Mayor Garcetti Announces Press Secretary

Brings wealth of experience working on critical issues facing the City of Los Angeles, joins current press secretary Connie Llanos.

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the appointment of Carl Marziali, former assistant vice president for media and public relations at the University of Southern California, to the position of press secretary. Marziali brings 25 years of experience in media relations and journalism, including 11 years in senior positions at USC. 

In the Office of the Mayor, Marziali will work alongside current press secretary Connie Llanos to communicate Mayor Garcetti’s bold agenda to create a more prosperous, safe, livable, and well-run city. 

“Carl’s wealth of experience leading media relations efforts at a world-renowned institution will make him an invaluable asset to my administration,” said Mayor Garcetti. “More importantly, he knows Los Angeles and he’s already worked at the center of several critical issues to our City. I look forward to him joining the team.”

As an assistant vice president at USC, Marziali led media relations strategy and execution for advocacy campaigns, including successful efforts to win approval for the development of USC Village and a new master lease for the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

 In his most recent position, and previously as director of research communications, Marziali led efforts to promote USC research and policy of wide societal impact — from landmark studies linking clean air regulation to improved health in children, to innovations in digital technology that are transforming entertainment, health care and education. Marziali’s media relations and social media teams have been nationally recognized for their success in translating and publicizing university research.

Marziali began his journalism career as a city hall reporter near Vancouver, British Columbia and went on to run a feature writing and media relations consulting practice in Chicago for 10 years. He holds master’s degrees in Mathematics and English Literature from the University of Chicago.

“I feel privileged to join Mayor Garcetti’s team,” Marziali said. “He is making tremendous progress with a forward-looking agenda that I admire and support enthusiastically for its focus on smart long-term growth.”

Marziali starts his new position on Monday, Feb. 8.

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18044

Mayor Garcetti Kicks Off Celebration Of African American Heritage Month

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Joining with City Council leaders, Mayor honors Angelenos for outstanding contributions to law, education, government, and culture.

Mayor Eric Garcetti today kicked off the annual celebration of African American Heritage Month, with ceremonies at City Hall to recognize and honor the contributions of black history-makers and organizations.

The 2016 African American Heritage Month kickoff opened with a ceremony inside City Council Chambers with City Council President Herb J. Wesson, Jr. and the Los Angeles City Council, City Controller Ron Galperin, the Department of Cultural Affairs, Our Authors Study Club, and the 2016 African American Heritage Month Committee.

“Black history is central to everyone’s history: Humanity itself rose from the continent of Africa. People of African descent were integral to the building of civilization, the founding of our nation, and the establishment of this city,” said Mayor Garcetti. “I am grateful for all of the passion that our City Council leaders have put into making African American Heritage Month special for all Angelenos. It gives our entire city an opportunity to reflect more deeply on these achievements, share the history with our children, and celebrate together in a spirit of unity, respect, and understanding.”

At the opening ceremony, Mayor Garcetti presented the Living Legend Award to Lionel Richie — a singer, songwriter, musician, producer, and philanthropist who has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and earned an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, and four Grammys. Three other leaders were presented with Hall of Fame Awards for Law, Education, and Government, respectively: the Honorable Audrey Collins, Associate Justice, California Court of Appeals; Dr. Willie J. Hagan, President of California State University, Dominguez Hills; and Jerome E. Horton, Chairman of the California State Board of Equalization.

“It is with immense pride that I join the Mayor and City Council in celebration of the numerous contributions African Americans have made to our city and country,” said Los Angeles City Council President Herb J. Wesson, Jr., the first African American to be elected Los Angeles City Council president. “This month marks an opportunity to reflect on both the progress that has been made and the work that must be done in the name of equality.”

During the opening ceremony, Mayor Garcetti joined City Council President Wesson and Councilmembers Curren Price and Marqueece Harris-Dawson to unveil the 2016 African American Heritage Month Calendar and Cultural Guide, which is produced by the Department of Cultural Affairs. The Guide includes listings of special events being held across the City, and showcases artwork by emerging and established African American artists. It is available online at www.culturela.org and at www.laheritagemonth.org.

“Growing up, I was blessed to have inspirational role models inside and outside of my home — individuals like my parents, icons such as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and others who ignited hope in me,” said Councilmember Curren Price. “As we celebrate African American Heritage Month and the contributions of some of the greatest American heroes of all time, I encourage today’s youth to find real-life mentors who help shape their future. Let’s continue writing our history because while we have come far, more work remains today and for our future leaders."

As part of the festivities, a Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Our Authors Study Club, a co-sponsor of African American Heritage Month and one of 53 branches of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History founded by Black History Month founder Dr. Carter G. Woodson. The organization’s mission is to research, preserve, interpret, and disseminate information about African American life, history, and culture.

“I’m proud to join my colleagues in recognizing African-American Heritage Month. It is a time-honored tradition of recognizing the achievements and cultural contributions of the people of the African Diaspora,” said Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. “It’s so important to highlight the indelible mark individuals and groups have left on our society. In culture, science, civil society, commerce and the arts, excellence has been a hallmark of so many individuals of African descent. It deserves to be recognized, praised and celebrated.”

About African American Heritage Month
Since February 1950, when Los Angeles Mayor Fletcher Bowron issued the first citywide proclamation honoring and recognizing the contributions of African Americans, residents throughout the city have celebrated Black History Month. These celebrations create awareness about the struggles and triumphs of African Americans in education, science, the arts, sports and other fields.

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18042

Statement: Mayor Garcetti on Board of Police Commissioners' Decision on Officer-Involved Shooting

"The violent end to a man’s life is always tragic, and I understand there will be many points of view about today's decision by the Board of Police Commissioners. Charly Keunang’s death has been particularly painful for many in our city. The events that led to it drew a bright red line from our homelessness crisis to some of the most difficult tasks that we ask the men and women of the LAPD to perform every day. Independent civilian oversight lies at the heart of the progress made by the LAPD over the last 20 years, and I have great confidence in the Police Commission, the integrity of its deliberations, and the leadership of President Matt Johnson. I am encouraged by the Commission's sharp focus on reducing use-of-force — and my expectation is that it can be accomplished in a way that gives every Angeleno, no matter who they are or where they live, confidence in their own safety and that of their families. That’s why my office is actively working with the LAPD to ensure that officers are properly trained in preservation of life and de-escalation techniques that can make deadly encounters between police and citizens less frequent. We all want to save lives. My hope is that we continue a candid, compassionate, and productive dialogue about how our officers interact with the communities they serve. We can't be a city that allows people to live on the streets in often violent conditions, with rampant mental health and drug abuse issues. We will continue working hard to solve this crisis, to make sure these tragedies are prevented." - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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18030

Mayor Garcetti Marks Milestone in the Lowering of Tunnel Boring Machine For Crenshaw-LAX Line

Named after an American hero, “Harriet” will create mile-long underground tunnels to serve light rail stations at Crenshaw/Expo, Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, and Leimert Park.

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Mayor Eric Garcetti today marked a milestone in the construction of the Crenshaw/LAX Line light-rail project, as “Harriet,” a massive machine that will excavate tunnels to connect three underground stations, was lowered during a celebration at the Expo construction yard.

 "Today is about more about than just launching the tunnel boring machine, it is about the promise we have made to move our communities forward. This machine has been named Harriet, in honor of Harriet Tubman, because it represents progress and opportunity,” said Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Second Vice Chair Eric Garcetti.“The Crenshaw/LAX Line will serve riders who have been historically under-served. And in doing so, it will ease congestion and will get Angelenos to the people and places they love."
 
"I can think of no better way to kick off Black History Month than to name the Crenshaw/LAX Line’s tunnel boring machine after Harriet Tubman, legendary conductor of the Underground Railroad,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor and Metro Board Chair Mark Ridley-Thomas, who also awarded TAP Cards to student winners of the contest to name the TBM and create artwork that is prominently displayed on its tail shield. “I am confident that this marvel of engineering now known as ‘Harriet’ will carry on its namesake’s legacy of forging new paths to greater opportunities.” 

The TBM will be lowered in segments and assembled in the next few weeks. Boring of the twin 1-mile tunnels is expected to last about 13 months, and when complete will connect three underground light rail stations: Crenshaw/Expo, Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, and Leimert Park.

“The ceremonial lowering of the tunnel boring machine marks an important milestone in the construction of this new light-rail line that will connect the communities of Crenshaw, Inglewood and LAX,” said Duarte Councilmember and Metro First Vice Chair John Fasana. “It enhances Metro’s rail system to offer more transportation options to commuters.”
 
“As we celebrate this exciting milestone for the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project, we want to thank the business community along the alignment for its patience,” said City of Inglewood Mayor and Metro Board Director James T. Butts.

The tunnel boring machine (TBM) weighs 950 tons, has a diameter of 21 ½ feet, and is 400 feet long. Manufactured in Germany by Herrenknecht AG, the TBM will dig 60 feet per day. When the TBM reaches Leimert Park Station, it will be disassembled and returned to the Expo Yard — where it will be lowered again and launched to excavate the second tunnel.

 “The progress we’re seeing today is only the first of many exciting milestones we’ll experience in 2016,” said LA Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington. “In March, the Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension to Azusa will open and in late spring we will cut the ribbon on the Metro Expo Line extension to Santa Monica. These developments demonstrate that investment in transportation moves our County forward now and in the future.”
 
Naming of the TBM is a mining tradition that dates back centuries. Since the 1300s, Saint Barbara has been the patron saint of miners, protecting them when they are working underground. This homage to saints evolved into the commemorative naming of tunneling machines with a female name before the digging begins.

About Crenshaw/LAX Line
The 8.5-mile Crenshaw/LAX Line is a $2.058 billion light-rail line that will connect the Green Line and the Expo Line. It will have eight new stations to serve the Crenshaw, Inglewood and LAX communities. It is expected to open in 2019.

For more information on the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project go to:
Website    - www.metro.net/Crenshaw 
Twitter      - twitter.com/crenshawrail
Hotline     (213) 922-2736.

About Metro
Metro is a multimodal transportation agency that is really three companies in one: a major operator that transports about 1.5 million boarding passengers on an average weekday on a fleet of 2,000 clean air buses and six rail lines, a major construction agency that oversees many bus, rail, highway and other mobility related building projects, and it is the lead transportation planning and programming agency for Los Angeles County.  Overseeing one of the largest public works programs in America, Metro is, literally, changing the urban landscape of the Los Angeles region. Dozens of transit, highway and other mobility projects largely funded by Measure R are under construction or in the planning stages. These include five new rail lines, the I-5 widening and other major projects.

Stay informed by following Metro on The Source and El Pasajero:
Website    - www.metro.net
Twitter      - twitter.com/metrolosangeles
                  - twitter.com/metroLAalerts
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18024

Mayor Garcetti And ESRI Launch Innovative Platform That Puts Open Data To Work

 GeoHub makes the City’s extensive collection of map-based data available for real-time analysis and use by decision-makers, first responders, and the public.

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Mayor Eric Garcetti and Esri President Jack Dangermond today unveiled the City of Los Angeles’ new GeoHub — one of the nation’s most complete collections of urban map data. The GeoHub builds on Mayor Garcetti’s third Executive Directive, which created L.A.’s first open data portal. By making more than 500 types of map data available to residents, city workers, and private industry, the GeoHub helps Angelenos better understand their communities, and City departments better coordinate construction, road paving, and public safety efforts.

“On its own, data gives us important insights into how our city works, and now we are putting open data to work,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The GeoHub provides real-time access to all the data we need in one convenient place, allowing us to improve everything from pothole repair to 311 call times, make smarter urban planning decisions, and make it easier for emergency responders to get to their next location. This is back to basics at its best.”

The Los Angeles GeoHub was created in collaboration with Esri, the world’s leader in geographic information systems (GIS) technology.

By pooling key data sets, and mapping their locations, City departments are now equipped with additional tools to get their work done more quickly and efficiently. For example, by providing a complete picture of what’s happening on the streets of Los Angeles — including real-time traffic data, road obstructions, the inspection status of nearby buildings, business activity, and even the nearest fire hydrants — GeoHub can help firefighters, sanitation workers, utility workers and all City personnel better understand the neighborhoods they serve.

Built on Esri’s ArcGIS platform, GeoHub pools map data layers from more than 20 different departments — allowing users to create living maps and build custom applications to solve pressing challenges and optimize city services.

“We are thrilled to partner with Mayor Garcetti and the City of Los Angeles to launch a data insight model that includes powerful collaborative and do-it-yourself mapping tools,” said Esri President Jack Dangermond. “Our hope is that other communities around the world will follow Mayor Garcetti’s lead and enable public works, transportation, health services, and other agencies to share location data and analysis in real time. That kind of data accessibility and transparency boosts community engagement. It also creates trusted networks that link local government to its businesses and its citizens.”

To show the power and range of the hub, the City is developing three “flagship” applications: “Streetwize,” which shows all of the permitted activity on the City’s public right of ways; “The Road to 2400,” which tracks the Bureau of Street Services’ progress on paving at least 2,400 lane miles per year; and “Vision Zero High Injury Network,” which can help improve pedestrian safety by providing users with key information — including where schools and high speed streets intersect.

The L.A. GeoHub is an important pillar in Mayor Garcetti’s broader strategy of using technology and data to delivery transparency, efficiency, and community engagement. Explore the L.A. GeoHub at http://geohub.lacity.org.

About Esri
Since 1969, Esri has been giving customers around the world the power to think and plan geographically. The market leader in GIS technology, Esri software is used in more than 350,000 organizations worldwide including each of the 200 largest cities in the United States, most national governments, more than two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies, and more than 7,000 colleges and universities. Esri applications, running on more than one million desktops and thousands of web and enterprise servers, provide the backbone for the world's mapping and spatial analysis. Esri is the only vendor that provides complete technical solutions for desktop, mobile, server, and Internet platforms. Visit us at esri.com/news.

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18019

Statement: Mayor Garcetti Participates In Tonight's Homeless Count

"The homeless count isn't about numbers, it's about people. It isn't about statistics, it's about our promise to lift up those who have been left behind. In the streets tonight, I saw an outpouring of support by Angelenos from all walks of life. Their generosity and compassion is going to help us eradicate homelessness and will create a ripple effect for years to come. This homeless count directly impacts the federal and state dollars we receive to provide shelter to those who need it, offer services to those who deserve it, and ensure that a home is a right all Angelenos enjoy." -- Mayor Eric Garcetti

Background

The LAHSA Homeless Point-in-time Count is a crucial data point to determine the number of homeless individuals and families are residing within the Los Angeles region (City and County) on any given night. The results from the Count allow LAHSA to secure federal Continuum of Care (CoC) funding and are used to inform local policy decisions on how to allocate funding. The 2016 Count is the first annualized occurrence. It took place over a course of three days and nights (January 26, 27, and 28), as LAHSA staff and trained volunteers fan out across the region to collect data.

 

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18017

Mayor Garcetti Announces New Fund for Art and Culture in Public Spaces

Arts Activation Fund will award $200,000 in grants to support the creation and installation of art and cultural projects throughout Los Angeles.

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the launch of a $200,000 grant program that will support the work of local artists and bring new vibrancy to public spaces across L.A.

The Arts Activation Fund, a partnership between Mayor Garcetti’s Great Streets Initiative and the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), will provide funding to artists with inspiring ideas for public art projects and cultural events in their neighborhoods.

“Art has the power to transform our perception, attitude and behavior — and is especially impactful when it lives in places that are accessible to everyone,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The Arts Activation Fund will support the creative genius that thrives in our city, and give Angelenos an opportunity to reimagine public spaces in their neighborhoods as vibrant, exciting, and creative places.”

The $200,000 fund, established with the support of the L.A. City Council, will be allocated to between eight and 15 projects, with each project eligible to receive as much as $15,000. The program is designed to fund a range of projects across the City that complement the unique character of their neighborhoods. In this spirit, the fund will prioritize artists with proposals for their own neighborhoods, and whose projects have strong support from their local communities.

The projects can take the form of temporary objects, installations, or experiences that are free to the community and situated in public places or within public view anywhere in the City. They will be conceived, developed, and presented within a two- to three-month timeline. Individual artists, collectives, limited partnerships, nonprofit organizations, and commercial businesses across the City are all eligible to apply.

"Through the work in my committee, we reactivated the Mural Ordinance, revived the Arts Development Fee resulting in millions of dollars for new public art, and guided the new Arts Activation Fund, which will contribute to Los Angeles as a city that values its arts and culture," said Councilmember Mitch O'Farrell, Chair of the City's Arts, Parks, and Los Angeles River Committee. "I want to thank DCA General Manager Danielle Brazell and her staff for their work to identify even more opportunities for artists to shine in the City of Los Angeles." 

The Arts Activation Fund propels Mayor Garcetti’s effort to improve public spaces across the City through community place-making and public art. Last year, the City launched a $200,000 Great Streets Challenge Grant Program that funded eight community projects to reimagine their Great Streets as public spaces.

“Public spaces in our neighborhoods and along our City’s Great Streets provide an open canvas for us to use our creative strength to animate and activate our communities through arts and culture,” said Danielle Brazell, General Manager of the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. “The Arts Activation Fund connects local artists to these spaces and the people indigenous to them to reinforce neighborhood identities and celebrate L.A.’s diversity.”

For more information, and to submit a proposal for funding through the Arts Activation Fund, visitdcaredesign.org/artsactivate. To find out more about Mayor Garcetti’s Great Streets initiative, visitwww.lamayor.org/greatstreets.

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18012

Mayor Garcetti Announces Partnership with Xerox to Help Ease Congestion and Improve Transportation in L.A.

The Go LA app offers one stop mobile access to public and private forms of transportation

Mayor Eric Garcetti today joined Xerox for the launch of Go LA, a transportation app that provides detailed information on every available mode of getting around the Los Angeles region.

“Go LA will help Angelenos get where they need to go by connecting smart technology with infrastructure,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The app helps users move around in faster, cheaper, and greener ways by linking them to all of the transportation options available to them — from freeways, to Metro, to bike routes — while also providing the City with useful data that can help us shape a more mobile future for the people who live and work here.”

Go LA aggregates and calculates the time, cost, carbon footprint, and health benefits from walking, biking, driving your own car, parking, taking public transit, or using emerging private transportation options like Lyft, Zipcar, FlitWays, and Uber.

“There are individual apps for public transit, car sharing, and other transportation options but the Go LA app captures the array of options in a hyper-local way, mixing and matching both public and private transportation options,” said David Cummins, senior vice president, Mobility Solutions, Xerox. “Beyond the seamless travel experience for citizens, Go LA will help the City glean important information they can use to advance their transportation systems.”

The app takes an individual’s destination and desired arrival time and calculates the different routes available — categorized by “sooner,” “cheaper,” and “greener.”

The details provided include length of trip, price, number of calories burned, and how much carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. As the app learns more about its user’s individual preferences, it will eventually recommend and highlight personalized commuting options. Customers can also save trips they take often, like from home to work, in their “My Rides” area of the app.

"With the launch of the Go LA app, Los Angeles is embracing technology to create the connected city of the future," said Councilmember Bob Blumenfield who serves as Chair of the Trade, Commerce, and Technology Committee.  "It’s part of our concerted effort to expand opportunities for Angelenos to interact with their government virtually. Go LA allows access to an integrated transportation platform that allows anyone to quickly and easily access and compare the fastest, cheapest, and greenest ways to get from point A to point B."

Through the app, data on destination and preferred travel modes is anonymously shared with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation — to deliver insights on how people travel and inform policy decisions.

“Our city has many centers. People are commuting in all directions at all times by many modes,” said Seleta Reynolds, General Manager of the Los Angeles Department of Transportation. “Xerox’s work could help us learn where to improve infrastructure for people who walk, roll, bike, take transit and drive — it’s invaluable insight to help make Los Angeles more livable and enjoyable.”

Xerox is working with its partners to integrate booking and payments into the app, so that users can coordinate an entire trip with a single click. Future versions of the app will also include ridesharing — so that users can carpool with people traveling in the same direction — as well as destination parking information. After enough data is collected, users will be able to create a profile where they can set goals and track progress on personal fitness, finances, and time.

The Go LA app is now available for iOS and Android systems in the Apple and Google Play stores at www.golaapp.com.

About Xerox
Xerox is helping change the way the world works. By applying our expertise in imaging, business process, analytics, automation and user-centric insights, we engineer the flow of work to provide greater productivity, efficiency and personalization. We conduct business in 180 countries, and our more than 130,000 employees create meaningful innovations and provide business process services, printing equipment, software and solutions that make a real difference for our clients – and their customers. Learn more at www.xerox.com.

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18011

Mayor Garcetti Announces New Access to Information on L.A.’s Rent-Stabilized Buildings

Properties' rent-stabilization status now available to public online through City’s Zoning Information & Map Access System.

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced new online tools that enable renters to more easily access information about their rights under the City’s Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO).

Now, any member of the public can find out whether a property is rent-stabilized by visiting the City of Los Angeles’ Zoning Information & Map Access System (ZIMAS). Previously, the status was only available via phone; the improved access makes it viewable online in the “Planning & Zoning” section at zimas.lacity.org.

“The Rent Stabilization Ordinance is a powerful tool that protects L.A. renters. It helps to keep rents reasonable as we work to create more affordable housing,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Making these resources available online empowers Angelenos with more information about their rights, and helps us better enforce rent stabilization policies that play a crucial role in the stability of our communities.”

Last year, Mayor Garcetti — along with L.A. City Councilmember Gil Cedillo, chair of the Housing Committee — called on the departments of City Planning, and Housing & Community Investment to create online tools to expand access to information about rent stabilization.

The RSO regulates approximately 118,000 properties, most built before 1979, that represent about 85% of L.A.'s rental housing stock. 

ZIMAS also now indicates whether a property owner has filed to remove a property from the rental market under the Ellis Act — a State law that allows owners of rent-stabilized properties to leave the rental business, usually resulting in tenant evictions. Units in properties for which an Ellis application has been filed cannot be re-rented for five years unless they comply with replacement provisions of the RSO. This additional Ellis Act flag will help the City and stakeholders better monitor properties that have been removed from the City’s rental stock.

For more information, visit zimas.lacity.org or the Housing & Community Investment Department at hcidla.lacity.org.

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18008

Mayor Garcetti Honors First Graduating Class of L.A. Public Library's Career Online High School

Mayor Eric Garcetti today honored the inaugural graduating class of the Los Angeles Public Library’s Career Online High School (COHS) program. Twenty-eight students received their diplomas at the Central Library in a ceremony attended by Mayor Garcetti, City Librarian John F. Szabo, Board of Library Commissioners President Bich Ngoc Cao, and State Librarian of California Greg Lucas. 

 Los Angeles Public Library is the first public library in the nation to offer adults the opportunity to earn accredited high school diplomas and career certificates online. 

 “L.A. is a city of second chances — and our libraries are a vital resource to help level the playing field of opportunity,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “As today’s graduates complete their secondary education through the Career Online High School, we are inspired by the power of these types of programs to transform the lives of Angelenos.”

Members of the graduating class range in age from their early 20s to mid-50s. There are currently 124 adult learners enrolled in the program — which was launched the program in 2014 to re-engage adults into the education system and prepare them for higher education or the workforce. 

 “Awarding diplomas to these adult learners is a dramatic example of the library’s continued transformation into a dynamic force for learning and empowerment,” said City Librarian John F. Szabo. “Armed with their high school diplomas, these graduates are now better prepared to find a job, advance in their career or continue their education.  The library is changing lives in a very big way.”

 Upwards of 25 percent of adult L.A. residents lack a high school diploma, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. In some areas of the city, as many as 60 percent of adults do not have a high school diploma.  Nationally, the dropout crisis has reached epidemic proportions: every 26 seconds another student gives up on school, resulting in more than one million American dropouts a year, or 7,000 every day. 

“All of us have different reasons why we didn’t complete our high school diploma, whether it was taking care of our families, having to work multiple jobs, or something else that prevented us from finishing,” said COHS graduate Angie Velasquez, who has secured a job and is pursuing a career in hospitality. “But there is one thing that we all have in common and that is determination. If it were not for COHS, I wouldn’t be working where I am now.”

COHS is administered through Gale, part of Cengage Learning, a leading provider of educational content, tools and services to libraries, schools and businesses. There is no cost to students for the program, but enrollment is limited.

The application process includes an online self-assessment, pre-requisite course and in-person interview at a local library.  Once a student is enrolled, COHS pairs each with an academic coach — who provides the student with an individual career path, offers ongoing guidance, evaluates performance, and connects the student with the resources needed to master their courses. Students are given up to 18 months to complete the program.  

Funding for the Career Online High School is provided by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles, the Clinton Global Initiative Scholarship Matching Program and the California State Library.

For more information about the Career Online High School program, including the qualification requirements and application process, visit the Los Angeles Public Library website at www.lapl.org/cohs

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18006

Statement: Mayor Garcetti on Academy Efforts to Increase Diversity

“Diversity is our greatest strength. I am encouraged that, under the bold leadership of President Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is taking important steps to ensure that its voting membership better reflects the range of experiences and perspectives that make cinema such a powerful and indispensable art form.

Film is Los Angeles’ most recognizable export, and the Oscars are an essential part of our city’s identity as the creative capital of the world. Our storytellers inform, educate, and inspire people everywhere, and this movement to diversify the Academy sends a message to the entire industry that we can — and must — recognize artists of color who have been historically marginalized, and whose excellence deserves equal recognition.” — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17993

Mayor Garcetti on Governor Brown's State of the State Address

“In a way that only he could, Governor Brown spoke to all Californians about the courage and confidence that has allowed our state to make remarkable progress under his leadership. While the Governor laid out a prudent and optimistic vision, he also reminded us of the challenges ahead: the drought, the crisis of climate change, the need to fix our roads, the income inequality in our cities. Los Angeles is a leader in confronting inequality ­— increasing our own minimum wage and making new investments in affordable housing. However, much work remains. In the year ahead, we have an opportunity to seize this unique moment in California’s history, and leadership, to enact meaningful change on issues like seismic safety, traffic reduction, and homelessness.” 

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17991

Mayor Garcetti Appoints Claire Bartels as General Manager of the Office of Finance

Mayor Eric Garcetti today appointed veteran executive Claire Bartels as General Manager of the Office of Finance.

"Claire brings institutional knowledge, years of experience running complex operations, and fiscal management expertise to the Office of Finance," said Mayor Garcetti. "Her knowledge and understanding of customer service, and her commitment to transparency, give her the tools necessary to enhance and modernize the department."

A central support department, the Office of Finance is charged with tax and permit collection, cash management, and short-term investments. Finance, the Controller’s Office, and the City Administrative Officer handle the majority of fiscal services for the City.

“I applaud the Mayor’s choice of Claire for the Office of Finance,” said Controller Ron Galperin. “For the past two-and-a-half years, Claire has been a catalyst for change and transparency in my office — and her appointment will only serve to further strengthen the partnership between Finance and the Controller.”

Bartels brings seven years of executive-level experience in the City’s fiscal operations, most recently as Executive Officer and Chief Deputy Controller for both Galperin and Wendy Greuel. She oversaw the successful implementation of the new enterprise financial management system and helped launch ControlPanelLA, opening the way to greater transparency and accountability through open financial data.

Bartels has been serving Los Angeles for nearly 30 years, beginning in the General Services Department. Later, she served as a special projects deputy for Councilmember Cindy Miscikowski and as Chief of Staff to Councilmember Wendy Greuel. She was also appointed by Mayor Richard Riordan to head his Targeted Neighborhood Initiative in 2000. There, Bartels was responsible for managing and administering the $36 million program — which provided 25 neighborhoods with resources to increase economic development and reduce blight in the community.

"I am honored to serve as the General Manager of Finance, a department that plays an important role in the Mayor’s vision of a well-run and fiscally sustainable city government," said Bartels. "I look forward to working with the Mayor, the Controller, and stakeholders to modernize the department," Bartels said.

Bartels replaces the former General Manager, Antoinette Christovale, who retired earlier this month with over 16 years of Service. “I thank Antoinette for her service to the City. She made history as the first African-American woman appointed as General Manager of the Office of Finance.” said Mayor Garcetti.

The Mayor has appointed Deputy Mayor Matt Szabo to serve as the interim General Manager for the Office of Finance as Bartels transitions from her role as Deputy Chief Controller to General Manager.

Bartels' appointment will now move to the City Council for confirmation.

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17986

Mayor Garcetti Discusses 'Greenlight Hollywood' Campaign, Positive Economic Impact of Film and Television Production

IMG_8677.JPG

Mayor Eric Garcetti today visited the set of "Live by Night" — a new feature film starring, directed, and produced by Ben Affleck — to discuss the positive economic impact of keeping film and television production in L.A. and the success of the Mayor's "Greenlight Hollywood" campaign.

Nearly one year ago Mayor Garcetti signed an Executive Directive geared toward broadening L.A.'s support for the film and television industry. City Hall is working overtime to ensure that production is returning to Los Angeles through financial incentives, including California Film Tax Credit and the assistance of the Mayor's Office of Motion Picture and Television Production.

"Live by Night," which received critical support from City Hall to secure a production location at the historic Pico House, has put more than 550 Angelenos to work and is expected to bring $68 million in direct in-state spending to Southern California.

"My 'Greenlight Hollywood' campaign is delivering results for the heart and soul of the film and television industry — the people who swing hammers, run cable and serve food on set so they can pay the bills and contribute to our local economy," said Mayor Garcetti. "We are fighting back against runaway production — and winning. My administration is creating the most film-friendly L.A. possible, by cutting red tape, coordinating city departments and investing in city services that promote entertainment job creation. Our film and television industry is the lifeblood of Los Angeles' middle class, and now production is coming back to where it belongs."

"There is nowhere better in the world to make a movie than Los Angeles," said Chris Brigham, Executive Producer of "Live by Night." "L.A. boasts the best actors, crews, soundstages, and facilities in the country — and thanks to the incredible support of City Hall, we were able to make the majority of 'Live By Night' right here at home."

Issued in March 2015, Mayor Garcetti’s sixth executive directive required all city departments to appoint a film liaison to work with the industry on efforts to make departments more film-friendly. The liaisons attend quarterly Film Task Force meetings and help train staff to emphasize the importance of filming to our local economy. Each department is responsible for cooperating fully with FilmLA; ensuring that all city fees be simple to understand and administer; making sure that billing is completed immediately; and ensuring that all city fees are set at the lowest possible amount.

Greenlight Hollywood is an initiative of the Mayor's Office of Motion Picture and Television Production. The effort works to bring down production costs and targets studio greenlight committees and talent agencies to promote Los Angeles as the premier destination for entertainment production.

"By coordinating closely with studios and City departments, we have been able to send the message to the entertainment industry that it can once again feel right at home here in the City of Los Angeles," said Kevin James, City Hall's Chief Film Liaison and President of the Board of Public Works. "City Hall is curbing runaway production and keeping filming right where it belongs: in Los Angeles."

Film L.A. today released a retrospective of production in Los Angeles in 2015. The study found that on-location filming in Greater Los Angeles increased 1.3 percent in in 2015 to 37,289 Shoot Days, thanks to a rise in scripted television production and the aid of the California Film & Television Tax Credit 2.0.

Mayor Garcetti has made protecting and expanding the entertainment industry a key priority because it is critical to the strength of Los Angeles' middle class. He helped lead a statewide coalition of policymakers and business leaders to push for legislation that would help put an end to runaway production, and created the first-ever Mayor's Office of Motion Picture and Television Production.

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17984

STATEMENT: MAYOR GARCETTI ON SUPREME COURT DECISION TO REVIEW TEXAS V. UNITED STATES


“Immigrants have always been vital to our nation’s spirit of innovation, ingenuity, and inclusiveness. Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to review Texas v. United States brings us another step closer to more fully integrating those residents into American life. I urge the Justices to reach a decision that preserves family bonds across our country and speaks to the best of who we are as Americans.” 

- Mayor Eric Garcetti
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17982

#101SlowJam: Mayor Garcetti Announces 40-Hour Closure of 101 Freeway for Demolition of Sixth Street Viaduct

6th St Bridge

Mayor Eric Garcetti and the City of Los Angeles’ Bureau of Engineering announced today that US Rte 101 will be closed for 40 hours beginning on Friday, February 5, 2016 at 10 p.m., to allow for demolition of the portion of the Sixth Street Viaduct that crosses over the freeway. The Sixth Street Viaduct will close to street traffic on Wednesday, January 27th. 

The 84-year old Sixth Street Viaduct suffers from a chemical deterioration of the bridge’s concrete and needs to be replaced. Construction of the new viaduct will be completed in late 2019.

The 3,500-foot long viaduct will be closed to all traffic by the end of January. The demolition of the remaining portion of the viaduct is expected to last nine months.

“My main priorities are keeping Angelenos safe and doing everything possible to minimize inconveniences or confusion that may be caused by the closure,” said Mayor Garcetti. “We will do that by ensuring that detours are clearly marked, and working closely with LAPD and LAFD to maintain the highest standards of police and fire response throughout the weekend.”

A 2.5-mile section of US Rte 101 will be closed from the 10/101 split to the 5/10/101 interchange just south of downtown Los Angeles. In addition, motorists travelling west on Rte 60 from the Pomona area will not be able to access US Rte 101.

“We are encouraging drivers to plan ahead, expect delays and to follow detour signs to alternate freeways,” said Carrie Bowen, Caltrans District 7 Director. “It’s important for motorists to Be Work Zone Alert and to Slow for the Cone Zone.”

Construction will start on the east side of the Los Angeles River in Boyle Heights.

“During the 40-hour freeway closure we encourage local residents of Boyle Heights and Downtown Los Angeles to plan accordingly,” said Councilmember Jose Huizar. “As we say goodbye to our old 6th Street Bridge before welcoming in our new bridge and public space, this is a necessary step to ensure the public’s safety and begin the work at hand.”

The Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project is led by the City’s Bureau of Engineering.

“Safety is always first in all the work we do in the City,” said Gary Lee Moore, City Engineer. “Closing the freeway will allow us to do demolition in the way that is safest for motorists and everyone else in that area of the city.”

101_Closure.jpg

For more detailed information on the closure, please go to www.sixthstreetviaduct.org or follow the closure on: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sixtstreetbridge

Twitter: https://twitter.com/6thStViaduct

Instagram: https://instagram.com/6thstviaduct.

ABOUT THE BUREAU OF ENGINEERING

The Bureau of Engineering is the City's lead agency for the planning, design and construction management of public buildings, infrastructure and open space projects. Projects include municipal buildings, such as police and fire stations, convention centers, and recreational and cultural facilities, as well as bridges, street and transit projects, and stormwater and wastewater systems. Open space projects include the development of parks and the restoration of wetlands. In addition, Engineering acts as the City's lead agency for the revitalization of the Los Angeles River through the bureau's LA River Project Office. The Bureau also manages permitting for construction in the public right-of-way, as well as the City's state-of-the-art online mapping system. Engineering's projects are nationally-recognized in the areas of environmental sustainability and design and fully support the City's goals of creating a prosperous, livable and safe city for all residents and businesses. For more information, please visithttp://eng.lacity.org.

MEDIA CONTACT

Mary Nemick, Director of Communications, Bureau of Engineering: 213-485-5085 or Mary.Nemick@lacity.org

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17971

STATEMENT: MAYOR GARCETTI ON PRESIDENT OBAMA'S FINAL STATE OF THE UNION SPEECH

“Tonight, the President challenged us to fulfill the values on which our nation was founded. He spoke not only of our promise, but our responsibility to fight for the American Dream. That’s what we’re doing in Los Angeles — we're fighting to lift people out of poverty, expand the benefits of citizenship, and revitalize our neighborhoods. We’re fighting to help Angelenos grow their businesses and we're embracing the principles of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The goals President Obama set forth tonight will outlive his presidency because they are essential to who we are as a people. Now, we are all called upon to carry on the work he began. In L.A., we are up to that challenge.” - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17951

The Rams are Coming Home

Rams

"Today, with the NFL returning home, Los Angeles cements itself as the epicenter of the sports world. We cannot wait to welcome the Rams, and perhaps others soon, as they join a storied lineup of professional franchises, collegiate powerhouses, and sports media companies. With the return of the NFL, there is yet another reason for visitors to come to Los Angeles, and for Angelenos to love calling this city home. I look forward to seeing the players out on the field." - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17950

Mayor Garcetti Appoints Wendy Greuel to LAHSA Commission

Wendy

Mayor Eric Garcetti today appointed veteran housing and homelessness policy expert Wendy Greuel to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority's Board of Commissioners (LAHSA).

"Wendy’s longtime advocacy for L.A.'s most vulnerable citizens makes her the ideal choice for this position," said Mayor Garcetti. "She brings in-depth expertise, a strong work ethic, and life-long dedication to public service and homelessness to the LAHSA Board. I know she is uniquely qualified to help us effectively and urgently address the homelessness crisis and implement the sustainable strategies we need to get people off the streets, connected to services, and into homes."

The LAHSA Commission has the authority to make budgetary, funding, planning and program policies for federal funding allocated to homelessness programming in the L.A. region.

Wendy Greuel served as a member of the Los Angeles City Council, representing the San Fernando Valley, and later as Los Angeles City Controller, from 2002 through 2013. She previously served as a member of the Clinton Administration, as the Deputy Director of the Interagency Council on Homelessness at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Greuel also served in the office of Mayor Tom Bradley for ten years. She acted as a liaison to elected officials, city departments and the community and was a key advisor on a range of public policy issues — including education, housing, and homelessness.

"Today, Los Angeles is acting on the homelessness crisis with unprecedented coordination at all levels of government," Greuel said. "Thanks to the strength of Mayor Garcetti's commitment and elected leaders across the region, we have an unparalleled opportunity to reduce homelessness in Los Angeles. My career in public services has centered on this issue, and I am proud to have contributed to the continuum of care system, the Los Angeles Homeless Initiative and the creation of LAHSA itself. I look forward to the opportunity to continue my commitment during this critical crossroads, and look forward to serving as the Mayor’s appointee."

Earlier today, Mayor Garcetti and Ms. Greuel joined homeless clients at the Downtown Women's Center for lunch to discuss their plans moving forward.

Greuel currently serves as a consultant for the Discovery Cube Los Angeles (DCLA), a children's science museum that focuses on STEM proficiency, early learning, healthy living, and environmental sustainability.

LAHSA Commission member Elise Buik, who is departing the commission after close to five years of service, saluted the Mayor's selection of Greuel.

“It has been a privilege having served over the past several years as Commissioner. I’m grateful to Mayor Garcetti for giving me the opportunity to lead and thank the City and County leaders I have served with on LAHSA’s Commission," said Buik. "Wendy is an ideal candidate for the role as LAHSA Commissioner and I’m thrilled that Los Angeles will have her leadership on this issue. Wendy is very committed to ending homelessness and brings tremendous experience in her work across many levels of government. She will be able to provide value and strategic guidance to LAHSA, ensuring that we continue on the united path of ending homelessness for all of our vulnerable neighbors.”

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17949

Mayor Garcetti on Selection of Michelle King as New LAUSD Superintendent

"I applaud the LAUSD board on its unanimous selection of veteran educator Michelle King as the new Superintendent. A product of LAUSD schools and a reflection of our City, King has dedicated her entire professional career to the students and families of the district. Over the course of more than 30 years, she has led reform efforts to increase graduation rates, strengthen academic rigor, and promote restorative justice. Her historic selection will bring the first woman of color to this key leadership role, inspiring thousands of girls throughout our City. I am eager to partner with her in this new role as we work to improve outcomes for all students in Los Angeles." - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17940

MAYOR GARCETTI CONGRATULATES SPEAKER-ELECT RENDON ON HIS ELECTION AS THE 70TH SPEAKER OF THE CALIFORNIA STATE ASSEMBLY

“Congratulations to my friend Anthony Rendon on being elected the next Speaker of the California State Assembly. Cities across our state have an ally in the Speaker-elect, who has led fights to improve openness and transparency in government, broaden economic opportunity, and pursue environmental justice for our communities. His election is good news for Los Angeles, and I look forward to working with him to continue moving our city forward.” — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17939

Statement: Mayor Garcetti on LAPD Chief Beck's Recommendation to D.A. on Officer-Involved Shooting

“As the District Attorney reviews this case, my hope is that Chief Beck’s recommendation is considered with the utmost gravity and that anyone found to have broken the law is held accountable. No one is above the law, and whenever use-of-force crosses the line, it is our obligation to make sure that that principle is upheld. Our officers perform heroic work every day, work that often goes unheralded. But accountability is fundamental to the trust that needs to exist between our officers and the people they serve — and maintaining that trust is essential to keeping our neighborhoods safe.” - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17938

Mayor Garcetti Announces Fifth Consecutive Year of Record-Breaking Tourism

More than 45 million people from around the world visited Los Angeles in 2015.

Record Tourism

Los Angeles tourism surged to its fifth consecutive year of record-breaking growth in 2015, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced today. A total of 45.5 million tourists visited the city last year, according to the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board — an increase of 1.3 million over 2014. These latest numbers keep the city well on pace to reach Mayor Garcetti’s goal of 50 million annual visitors by 2020.

Momentum in the local tourism sector is building amid a period of booming growth in infrastructure across Los Angeles. As LAX forges ahead with its $8.5 billion modernization program, the Downtown skyline continues an unprecedented transformation, and new transportation projects make moving through the city and region faster and easier than ever before.

“Los Angeles is a place where the world comes together for cultural experiences and celebrated attractions that cannot be found anywhere else,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Our city keeps setting records in the tourism sector because we are investing billions at our airport, in mass transit, and other assets that are making L.A. more exciting and accessible than ever. The sky’s the limit.”

The increase in tourism from China to L.A. has been particularly pronounced, with more than 779,000 Chinese tourists visiting the City last year — more than 13 percent higher than in 2014. Visitorship from South Korea also spiked, with an increase of 11 percent over the previous year.

Overall, Los Angeles welcomed 6.7 million international visitors last year.

“LA is truly a global city, as this year’s numbers demonstrate and confirm,” said Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, chair of the Los Angeles City Council’s Trade, Commerce and Technology Committee. “We are a destination, not only for our natural beauty, mountains, and beaches, our theme parks and world famous landmarks, but also for those wishing to do business with the third largest metropolitan economy in the world; a global center for content generation, innovation, and more. Last year’s record-setting tourism numbers send a message to the world that LA is open for business, and I know that the world will respond in 2016 and in the years ahead.”

The growth in tourism was propelled by milestone accomplishments in 2015, including the success of the Special Olympics World Games, the opening of the Broad Museum and the reopening of the Petersen Automotive Museum.

“We want to recognize and congratulate our hospitality community for their passion and dedication which has allowed us to celebrate our fifth consecutive year of record-breaking visitation. It’s these individuals and businesses that make Los Angeles such a dynamic destination that 45.5 million people traveled to experience it in 2015,” said Ernest Wooden Jr., president & CEO of the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board. “These figures help propel us to our goal of welcoming 50 million visitors by 2020.”

Los Angeles is matching the growth of its tourism sector with an unprecedented $8.5 billion modernization program at LAX, which has become the nation’s busiest destination airport, and the second-busiest overall. Those upgrades include substantial capital improvements to virtually every terminal at the airport. Another $5 billion will be invested in a rail system to ease mobility into and out of the airport, as well as between terminals; and a brand new consolidated rental car facility.

“LAX is the first and last impression of Los Angeles that visitors have,” said Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners President Sean Burton. “While the major U.S. airlines at LAX are investing more than $1 billion combined to renovate their terminals, Los Angeles World Airports is spending billions to improve the guest experience by rebuilding and modernizing its terminals, making changes to the airport’s dining and retail offerings to reflect L.A.’s culture, cuisine and lifestyle; upgrading technology and planning for future transportation enhancements that will significantly improve access to the airport.”

“Now is a pivotal time for LAX and for L.A.,” said Los Angeles World Airports Executive Director Deborah Flint.  “We are changing and transforming the airport, bringing LAX into the modern era for the modern traveler by providing a world class experience, in world class facilities. Visitors to Los Angeles and residents have a lot to look forward to.”

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17937

Mayor Garcetti and Army Corps Announce Interim Flood Control Measures on L.A. River

Mayor Eric Garcetti and Los Angeles District Commander Col. Kirk Gibbs announced today that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) will be taking new interim measures to improve flood protection on the Los Angeles River during El Niño. USACE received emergency federal funding to begin work next week on an area of the river that spans from Griffith Park to Elysian Valley.  

"Our river is unique — most of the year it runs nearly dry, and then during the rainy season it runs in powerful torrents as we've seen this week," said Mayor Garcetti. "My top priority during El Niño is to ensure the safety of everyone in our city, and I thank the Army Corps of Engineers for taking action now to enhance the river's flood management functions."

The Los Angeles District of USACE determined this area needed increased capacity to keep the river in its banks. The L.A. District declared an emergency to USACE headquarters on January 6, prompting headquarters to provide $3.1 million in federal funding and nearly 3 miles of temporary barriers, known as HESCO Bastion. The temporary barriers effectively raise the sides of the river channel, temporarily increasing its capacity for the winter storm rains.

Additionally, the District received approximately $500,000 in operations and maintenance funding to begin vegetation removal from the highest-risk areas within the channel, in an area just upstream and downstream of Riverside Drive and the Zoo Bridge. The vegetation impedes water flow.

“The flood fighting has just begun for this winter,” said Gibbs. “The additional funding for the river should provide the interim flood risk reduction needed. Residents will start seeing an increase in activity in and around the channels starting the week of January 11th.”

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors sent a letter Tuesday to Congress and USACE requesting the additional funds.

"Not only will the work by the Army Corps of Engineers allow the Los Angeles River to better manage the larger volumes of storm flows expected from future El Niño rains this season, it will also provide residents from the cities of Los Angeles and Glendale the protection they deserve from flooding," said L.A. County Supervisor Hilda Solis.

"The L.A. County Department of Public Works, along with L.A. City's Office of Emergency Management, have been preparing for months to ensure that Los Angeles is ready for El Niño," said L.A. County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. "That's why we strongly pressed the federal government to fund the work of the Corps of Engineers to quickly perform urgently needed maintenance of this stretch of the river. We are very pleased to see the Corps taking action and we trust the work will be completed quickly."

The emergency work will require action from the Los Angeles City Council in the form of a motion that will allow the USACE right-of-way entry to the river levees.

"The unpredictable rainy season in the Los Angeles area requires us to take special preventive measures for those who live in neighborhoods along the L.A. River,” said Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, who chairs the city’s Arts, Parks, and LA River Committee. “I want to thank the USACE, the County, and our own City departments for their work to improve public safety during this El Niño weather event.”

Construction teams will place the barriers along the edges of the river which may require closing some sections of the L.A. River bike and pedestrian path. The work is anticipated to take several weeks, with the installations expected to remain in place through the spring.

"Given the potential danger that the current El Niño storms pose to the City, it’s essential that we increase safeguard measures that protect our neighborhoods, especially those along flood zone areas," said Councilmember David Ryu.

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17933

City of Los Angeles Releases Homelessness Strategy Report

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Mayor Garcetti joins Council President Herb Wesson, Councilmembers Harris-Dawson, Huizar and the City’s Homelessness & Poverty Committee to release the foundation of the City’s comprehensive approach to providing needed housing and services
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The City of Los Angeles today released a draft Homelessness Strategy Report, which lays the foundation for a regional approach to addressing this chronic issue. Drafted by the Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Legislative Analyst, the report was requested by the Homelessness and Poverty Committee in June and represents a commitment shared by Mayor Eric Garcetti and the City Council to scale up best practices for getting people off the streets and into homes.
 
The report calls for substantially expanded staffing, services, rental subsidies, and permanent housing for the City’s homeless residents. Its recommendations will guide the Mayor’s and City Council’s short- and long-term homelessness policy decisions. The report also identifies potential funding streams and begins to estimate initial costs that will help inform the Mayor’s proposed 2016/2017 budget.

The draft Homelessness Strategy, which coincides with a strategy being issued by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, will be heard by the Homelessness and Poverty Committee on January 13, with a followup meeting later in the month. It is expected to be considered by the full City Council in February.

"For the first time, Los Angeles is creating a sustainable strategy to help our most vulnerable residents and affirm our identity as a city of opportunity,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “The Homelessness Strategy Report gives us the blueprint we need to guide our decision making process, and its recommendations will help us allocate the critical funding we need to address this issue over the next decade. I look forward to reviewing the report in detail, and I am pleased to see that it incorporates the three pillars of my homelessness strategy: scaling up the Coordinated Entry System; preventing people at-risk for homelessness from landing on the streets; and balancing health and safety concerns with the rights and needs of people who are living in unacceptable conditions. I am committed to working with the City Council, and our County partners, to enact a broad-reaching policy and find the funding we need to implement it as swiftly as possible.” - Mayor Eric Garcetti. 
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"The extensive work we’ve done lays the basis for the city and our partners to more aggressively confront our estimated $1.8 billion housing gap and improve the availability and efficiency in services while, at the same time address some root causes of long-term poverty," said Councilmember Harris-Dawson, who serves as Co-Chair of the Homelessness and Poverty Committee. “I am especially proud of the collaborative effort that we have taken with the County in preparing and exchanging ideas to ensure that we are focusing our efforts simultaneously, creating short and long term solutions to the crisis we face today. I look forward to reducing homelessness across our City with a particular focus on people of color as I've come to learn that this is by far the largest segment of the homeless population in the City and County."

“This report represents months’ worth of work in the Homelessness & Poverty Committee where we literally began building a strategy from the ground up – creating the necessary infrastructure and institutional knowledge to address homelessness that did not exist until now,” said Councilmember José Huizar, who serves as Co-Chair of the Homelessness and Poverty Committee. “This report is an important first step, and I look forward to continue working with Committee Co-Chair Harris-Dawson, Mayor Garcetti, Council President Herb Wesson and all our City Council colleagues in the coming days to address homelessness and give hope to tens of thousands of people looking for a second chance at a better life.”

"We have come together ready to pull the most vulnerable Angelenos up and off of the streets and into housing," said Los Angeles City Council President Herb J. Wesson, Jr. "The City Council is well on its way to crafting a strategic plan that not only creates a blueprint for Los Angeles moving forward, but also complements the county and state's efforts to combat homelessness."

Last fall, City leaders pledged $100 million in funding to address homelessness. At the Mayor’s request, the City Council in December approved $12.4 million in emergency relief funding, which is being used to get Angelenos off the street and out of harm’s way. With El Niño winter storms already hitting the Southland, these dollars are helping expand temporary housing and other critical services that meet urgent needs.

Some of the principles of the Homelessness Strategy Report include:
  • Adopting a “No Wrong Door” approach to improve the City’s interactions with homeless people. From police officers to librarians, City employees will be empowered with the tools, relationships, and resources necessary to connect people in need to services and housing;
  • Establishing a focused homelessness governance infrastructure in the City so that there is institutional knowledge and accountability. This includes establishing a Homelessness Czar/Coordinator;
  • Continuing to expand, improve and use the Coordinated Entry System as a core process that matches homeless people with vital resources;
  • Embracing the “Housing First” approach;
  • Using City funds to leverage Federal, State, and County dollars to fill unfunded gaps;
  • Making more housing available at all income levels;
  • Working closely with LAHSA for expert guidance and support;
  • Ensuring that services and housing are provided in all L.A. communities.
Since June, the Homelessness & Poverty Committee has taken input and provided guidance to the development of the draft plan, with meetings focused on:
  • Findings, trends and outcomes of the Homeless Count
  • Improving City department interactions with the homeless
  • Identifying and serving different levels of homelessness
  • Housing needs/funding
  • Homelessness governance structure
  • Mental health and health services for the homeless
"I am grateful, encouraged and tremendously impatient,” said Councilmember Mike Bonin, who serves on the Homelessness and Poverty Committee and represents a district with one of the largest homeless populations in the city. “I am grateful we have a blueprint for a genuine, long-term strategy, encouraged by the report’s focus and clarity, and tremendously impatient to make things happen. We need this report’s long-range vision to build sufficient housing, but we also need immediate action that will reduce the number of encampments in our neighborhoods and get people living on our streets the support and services they need and deserve.”

"The report is an important first step in formalizing a policy structure that will help us reach our goal to end homelessness and prevent homelessness in the City and County of Los Angeles,” said Councilmember Curren Price, who serves on the Homelessness and Poverty Committee. “I am proud to be a part of this collaborative effort that will empower us to utilize progressive and innovative solutions as we work to restore hope and dignity to our homeless population, and get them into permanent housing."
"I'm happy that the City is treating the issue of homelessness with the attention it deserves. We have expanded the number of winter shelters to deal with the eminent threat of El Niño and are working on the longer term solution of increasing our housing stock citywide," said City Councilmember Gil Cedillo, who serves on the Homelessness and Poverty Committee. "We have to continue allocating the resources necessary to deal with the challenge before us."
The public is invited to give feedback on the City's Homelessness Strategy Report. Comments can be shared here: http://www.lamayor.org/homelessness-strategy-feedback
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17930

MAYOR GARCETTI STATEMENT ON GOV. BROWN’S ORDER ON ALISO CANYON GAS LEAK

“The people of Porter Ranch have been suffering too long in the shadow of the ongoing environmental disaster in Aliso Canyon, and the City of Los Angeles has been doing everything in its power to help residents cope with its effects. I spoke with Gov. Brown to ask for an emergency declaration, and I'm grateful that he acted today. The order will bring the additional resources and focus we need — to get people back into their homes, restore confidence in the safety of this community, and begin rebuilding quality of life in the neighborhoods affected by the gas leak.” — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17924

MAYOR GARCETTI RESPONDS TO PRESIDENT OBAMA'S EXECUTIVE ACTIONS ON GUN VIOLENCE

“Congress has failed time and again to pass firearm safety measures, such as background checks, that are supported by the vast majority of Americans, including gun owners. We are grateful that today President Obama is pushing past the politics of the gun lobby to take steps that can save lives. The gun violence epidemic has been particularly devastating for cities and heartbreaking for the people who live in them. By ensuring that gun buyers undergo basic screenings, and seeking stronger enforcement of existing laws, we can begin to curb gun violence that devastates families and makes our communities less safe.” – Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17919

MAYOR GARCETTI ANNOUNCES NOMINATION OF NEW PLANNING DIRECTOR

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Incoming Department Head Brings Decades of Planning Experience from Across Southern California.

Los Angeles -- Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the nomination of Pasadena Planning Director Vince Bertoni as the new head of the Los Angeles Department of City Planning (LADCP). Bertoni comes to the Department with more than 25 years of planning experience – including a previous stint at LADCP.

“As we work together to shape the future of the Los Angeles cityscape, we need an expert at the helm who brings both fresh ideas and an intricate understanding of our city’s complex planning process,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Vince Bertoni’s experience both here in Los Angeles and across the region will add tremendous value to our City’s planning efforts. He is a professional who leads by collaborating and consensus-building – skills that will help him balance the diverse needs of our communities, and facilitate real progress in the ongoing conversation about development in this city.”

Bertoni has served for five years as the City of Pasadena’s Planning and Community Development Director. During that time, he successfully managed Pasadena’s city planning program through a General Plan update, a comprehensive visioning process that happens just once every 20 years.

Before joining the City of Pasadena, Bertoni served as Deputy Planning Director in Los Angeles, where he oversaw the adoption of 16 historic preservation overlay zones, new guidelines for the Broadway Historic District, a bicycle master plan and a Hollywood community plan. 

Bertoni also has held lead planning posts in the cities of Beverly Hills, Santa Clarita and Malibu, and he serves as a member of the California Planning Roundtable.

In his new position, Bertoni will lead the maintenance and execution of Los Angeles’ General Plan -- the comprehensive framework guiding development and infrastructural growth across the City. He will play a crucial role in helping to facilitate smart infrastructural growth, while also working to protect the character of Los Angeles’ neighborhoods.

“I am honored to lead this department and its talented staff at such an important moment in its history,” Bertoni said. “I look forward to working with stakeholders across the City to strengthen our neighborhoods and build a prosperous future for Los Angeles.”

Bertoni succeeds outgoing Planning Director Michael LoGrande, who is leaving the position after more than 18 years of service to the Department, including six as its head.  During his time there, LoGrande helped successfully approve more than 50,000 residential units in Los Angeles and more than 20 mixed-use projects. He also launched a comprehensive rewrite of the City’s 1946 zoning code. Under LoGrande’s leadership, the City of Los Angeles adopted its first Mobility Plan 2035, multiple Community Plans and Transit Oriented Development Plans across the City.

“I have enjoyed the opportunity to serve the citizens of Los Angeles in this important role while accomplishing the goals the Mayor and I had established. I have had the privilege to work alongside the dedicated Planning staff to guide the transformative growth we have seen in Los Angeles, while protecting the character of our neighborhoods,” LoGrande said. “I am proud to hand the reins to someone with as much experience and knowledge as Vince.  I have no doubt he will continue the positive momentum right where we left off.”

Bertoni’s nomination for General Manager of LADCP will now move to the City Council for confirmation.

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17917

STATEMENT FROM MAYOR GARCETTI ON CALIFORNIA STATE HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS LEGISLATION

“Solving our homelessness crisis requires an all-hands-on-deck approach, and financial support from the state is essential to getting people off the street and into homes. I know that our partners in the Legislature — under the exceptional leadership of Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León — understand the urgency of this issue, and we are grateful for their support of an expansive housing-first model that aligns with strategies that we know are the most effective at getting people out of cycles of poverty and despair. The sooner we house our most vulnerable population, the faster we can ensure better opportunities and a more stable future for all Angelenos." — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17916

MAYOR GARCETTI ANNOUNCES 'LYFT-OFF' AT LAX: Just in time for the holiday season, pick-ups will start tomorrow

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LOS ANGELES - To make mobility in Los Angeles easier for residents and visitors, Mayor Garcetti announced that pick-ups from transportation network companies (TNCs) will officially launch tomorrow – just in time for the rush of holiday travel.

At 8 a.m. tomorrow, December 23, Lyft will begin pick-ups at LAX, making the rideshare company the first TNC to be licensed for this service at the airport, and expanding transportation options for travelers who already enjoy access to taxis, shuttles, and the popular FlyAway ® service.  

“Tomorrow, we will have ‘Lyft-off’ at LAX, giving our passengers what they have been asking for, another safe and convenient way to get to and from the airport," said Mayor Garcetti. " As we continue rebuilding nearly every terminal at the airport, and work to bring rail to LAX, our passengers deserve access to all available options to ensure they have an excellent experience.”

Mayor Garcetti has made improving amenities at LAX a priority, leading efforts to allow pick-ups by transportation network companies (TNCs) at LAX. Now allowed to pick up passengers on the upper Departure level of LAX, transportation network companies who successfully complete the application process will pay the airport $4 per trip, while following rules to reduce congestion in the central terminal area. Tomorrow culminates a thorough policy development process during which Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) staff held several public comment periods and considered input from dozens of stakeholders, including passengers, neighborhood groups, transportation network companies, taxicab companies, limo companies, disability advocates, and environmental advocates.  

The Los Angeles City Council approved the license agreement that came out of that policy development process earlier this year, paving the way for TNC pick-ups at LAX.

"Innovative app-based transit options like Lyft have fundamentally altered the way Angelenos experience our city,” said Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, the chair of the Los Angeles City Council’s Innovation, Grants, Technology, Commerce and Trade Committee, which oversees the airport. “I was proud to work with Mayor Eric Garcetti to bring TNCs to LAX in a way that is convenient, regulated, and above all, safe, to ensure Los Angeles residents and visitors access and continue our push to make Los Angeles the most forward thinking big city in America."

TNC's that successfully apply for and obtain a license from LAWA will now be permitted to both pick up and drop off at LAX, giving passengers the power to choose their preferred transportation option.

"I am stoked that we are leading the way in passenger convenience by allowing Lyft to operate at LAX," said Councilmember Mike Bonin, who represents LAX and nearby neighborhoods.  "Lyft will broaden the range of choices for passengers, making it easier to go to and from the airport.  The agreement negotiated by the Board of Airport Commissioners protects nearby neighborhoods with technology that prevents drivers from parking on their streets while they wait for calls. This is a 'win-win' for passengers and neighborhoods that we should all celebrate."

Other TNCs are currently in various stages of LAWA's application process to obtain a license agreement. Prior to issuing a license agreement to a TNC, LAWA carefully reviews each application to ensure the TNC and its drivers are able to comply with the rules and regulations necessary to ensure safe and reliable service for passengers at LAX.

Deborah Flint, executive director of Los Angeles World Airports, added "LAX passengers can now make use of the same transportation options at the airport that they already have throughout Los Angeles. The license agreement governing Transportation Network Companies was designed to benefit travelers, help decrease traffic congestion at the airport, promote fair competition among transportation companies in both regulations and fees, and generate revenue from commercial users of airport property that can be invested to further improve the guest experience at LAX.”

"We’re excited that Los Angeles visitors and residents will be able to get a Lyft ride to and from LAX, just in time for the holiday season," said Bakari Brock, Lyft's Senior Director of Business Operations. "This is a big step forward for consumers, and we want to thank the Los Angeles World Airports Board of Airport Commissioners and Mayor Garcetti for their work to bring modern transportation options like Lyft to the airport."

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17889

MAYOR GARCETTI AND ARMY CORPS ANNOUNCE SIGNIFICANT MILESTONE FOR L.A. RIVER RESTORATION

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LOS ANGELES—Mayor Eric Garcetti and Los Angeles District Commander Col. Kirk Gibbs announced today that the Chief of Engineers of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, has signed off on the plan to restore the Los Angeles River, a major milestone in efforts to transform the river's aquatic ecosystem. This approval is a critical step toward moving the project forward to Congress for authorization and appropriation of funding.

"Thanks to our partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, we have reached a watershed moment for a riparian revival in Los Angeles," said Mayor Garcetti. "This plan represents more than ten years of hard work and unprecedented collaboration and gives us the opportunity to transform both the river and our city."

"We and our partners have put tremendous effort into developing and moving forward a plan that would improve the L.A. River ecosystem in a constrained funding environment," said Col. Gibbs. "Our number one priority of the plan is to restore the river's ecosystem while preserving the flood protection that is provided by the existing channel system."

The Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration project proposes restoration measures in and along an 11-mile stretch of the river to reestablish scarce riparian strand and freshwater marsh and aquatic habitat, while maintaining existing levels of flood risk management. Habitat connections will be reestablished at major tributaries within the river's historic floodplain, and to regional habitat zones of the Santa Monica, San Gabriel, and Verdugo mountains. The plan will restore approximately 719 acres by widening the river in key areas by terracing and restructuring channel banks to support vegetation, creating side channels and off-channel marsh, daylighting small streams, and removing invasive vegetation. Associated recreation features include trails, vista points, educational amenities, and pedestrian bridges.

The Chief's Report now goes to the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works) Jo-Ellen Darcy for administrative review and transmittal to Congress, expected in early 2016. Congress must authorize the project in a Water Resources Development Act and appropriate funds in order for the Corps and the City to begin construction.
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17884

Mayor Garcetti Statement on Omnibus Spending Bill

“Earlier this month, I asked Congress to increase funding to keep housing affordable, build out our public transportation network, and ensure that veterans have the housing they deserve. Today, I applaud President Obama and Congress for passing a spending bill that provides Los Angeles with critical federal dollars we need. We are thrilled to have staved off a 93% cut to L.A.'s affordable housing production. The omnibus appropriations bill will fuel real progress, helping to address our homelessness and affordability crises; restore hope for veterans who fought for our freedom; power our transition to renewable energy; and boost the expansion of our infrastructure with support for public transit and our port.” - Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17883

Mayor Garcetti Announces Perfect Score for Los Angeles on LGBT Equality Survey

Equality

For fourth consecutive year, L.A. tops Municipal Equality Index issued by the Human Rights Campaign.

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced today that the City of Los Angeles has received a perfect score on the Municipal Equality Index (MEI) issued by the Human Rights Campaign, which grades the city’s support for LGBT people who live and work in L.A.
 
“Equality and tolerance are values that define what it means to be an Angeleno,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Our laws, policies, and attitudes have to reflect those ideals. I’m proud that L.A. is America’s leader in protecting the LGBT community from discrimination and creating opportunities that allow everyone to thrive.”

This is the fourth consecutive year that L.A. has topped the survey. With the MEI, the Human Rights Campaign rates more than 408 cities, including the 150 largest in the United States, on 47 criteria that fall under six broad categories: non-discrimination laws; municipal employment policies, including transgender-inclusive insurance coverage and non-discrimination requirements for contractors; inclusiveness of city services; law enforcement; and municipal leadership on matters of LGBT advocacy and equality.

For more information, visit: www.hrc.org/mei.

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17879

Mayor Garcetti Announces Millions in State Funding for Affordable Housing

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced today that Los Angeles has been awarded new funding to help tackle our City’s affordable housing crisis.

The California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) – a state committee formed by the legislature to advance local community revitalization efforts – has awarded $15 million in new grants for affordable housing projects in L.A. The City has received $30 million total this year from the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) Program.

“Every Angeleno deserves a home to call their own — but for too many that place is out of reach,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Solving L.A.’s affordable housing crisis is about improving the quality of life for our City’s families. We must dedicate as many resources, and as much energy as possible to meeting this challenge — and we’re making progress thanks to partners like the Strategic Growth Council.”

The AHSC grant program supports infill housing and transportation projects that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. L.A.’s $30 million in grants is the largest awarded to any city in California, and follows Mayor Garcetti’s successful advocacy to lift what had previously been a $15 million cap on those awards.

The AHSC funding will aid in the development of new affordable housing, and advance the transformation plans at the Jordan Downs public housing development. It will also provide gap financing for more than 700 units of affordable housing that will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions — through mixed-use designs that encourage walking, bicycling, and the use of mass transit. More than 200 of these units are specifically targeted for homeless residents, and about 100 are dedicated to seniors.

“The Strategic Growth Council’s substantial AHSC award to developments in Los Angeles is a true testament to Mayor Garcetti’s leadership to bring alternative funding sources for the production of new affordable housing near transit here in the city,” said Robin Hughes, President and CEO of the affordable housing provider Abode Communities. “The allocation of $4 million for the first phase of our Rolland Curtis Gardens mixed-use community will ensure that more than 330 residents will have access to affordable housing opportunities and vital low-cost health services in a rapidly gentrifying USC-adjacent community in South Los Angeles.”

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17876

Mayor Garcetti Announces Streamlined Solar Program for Los Angeles Residents, Businesses

Collaboration between City departments will ease transition to renewable energy, and help L.A. grow even more sustainable and resilient.

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the roll-out of a revamped solar energy program, which will enable thousands of Angelenos to produce and utilize solar power with greater speed and efficiency.

The streamlined solar program will ease the way for people to create clean power in their homes and businesses — bringing Los Angeles closer to several specific objectives outlined in Mayor Garcetti’s Sustainable City pLAn, including the expansion of local solar and the reduction of wait times for solar interconnection.

“People across our city have sent a message loud and clear: they want to be partners in making our city more sustainable and more resilient,” said Mayor Garcetti. “We have answered that call by investing in significant improvements to our solar program, and providing better access than ever to clean, sustainable energy for homes and businesses in L.A.”

The new system is the result of close collaboration between the Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) and the Department of Water and Power (LADWP). The departments revamped the local solar program through three major improvements: an online, automated permitting system for solar installations; a more precise, time-saving automated permit notification system between LADBS and LADWP; and a streamlined process for issuing rebates and getting solar panels interconnected and energized.

Previously, these steps involved a complex process requiring multiple communications between customers and both City departments — causing delay and increased costs.

“Improvements like online permitting and automated notifications shave weeks off project schedules and result in faster solar connections,” said LADBS General Manager Raymond Chan. “LADBS is proud to partner with LADWP on improving the services we provide to our mutual customers."

“LADWP is committed to making it easier for our customers to go solar,” said LADWP General Manager Marcie Edwards. “We have developed changes to our process to make it faster and hassle-free to flip the switch on the solar installations. It is important for us to make the experience of embracing solar energy more beneficial than the status quo.”

Both LADBS and LADWP collaborated with leading solar installers to design this new process. Since LADBS launched online solar permitting, the number of permits being issued online each month has grown from 40 to more than 600. At LADWP, separating meter installation from rebate processing means customers no longer have to wait for rebate applications to be completed in order to activate a solar system. 

To date, Angelenos have installed about 146 megawatts (MW) of net metered solar. LADWP anticipates continued growth in the program, and is in the process of increasing the projected available amount of net metered solar from 310 MW to a larger amount calculated in a manner similar to the methods used by California investor-owned utilities.

This increase in solar will also be driven by the anticipated extension of the federal Solar Investment Tax Credit, currently part of the budget bill being considered by Congress. Mayor Garcetti has advocated for this extension, which helps customers and the City reduce the cost of installing local, clean energy.

For general information about the Solar Incentive Program, visit www.ladwp.com/solar and visit www.ladbs.org to get an online permit for rooftop solar systems for up to 10 kW for single-family homes and duplexes.

 

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17874

Mayor Garcetti Announces City Council Approval of Los Angeles/Ontario Airport Settlement Agreement

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced City Council approval of a Settlement Agreement that will lead to the transfer of ownership of LA/Ontario International Airport (ONT) to the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA). The landmark agreement was approved in closed session and will become final with approval from the OIAA. 

“We are now one step closer to finalizing a historic settlement that will improve air travel throughout Southern California and benefit residents and airport employees in both Los Angeles and Ontario,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “I have long supported this transfer of ownership, and I am proud of the collaboration that delivered these results. I’d like to thank City Council President Herb Wesson for his leadership on this issue, as well as Trade, Commerce and Technology Committee Chairman Bob Blumenfield, and Councilmember Mike Bonin, who authored the motion for this agreement.”

The settlement agreement resolves all claims brought by Ontario in a litigation process that has been ongoing since June 2013. To finalize the transfer of ownership, the OIAA must obtain a certificate to operate the airport from the FAA.

"The deal approved today by the City Council was both fair and equitable for the hundreds of employees servicing Ontario International Airport," said L.A. City Council President Herb J. Wesson.

“Los Angeles’s sale of Ontario International Airport begins a new era in relations between Los Angeles and our partners in the Inland Empire,” said Councilman Bob Blumenfield, who chairs the Trade, Commerce and Technology Committee. “Over the last weeks and months, under the leadership of Mayor Eric Garcetti, we have worked to craft a deal that protects Los Angeles taxpayers, protects airport employees, and advances the long-term goals of Los Angeles World Airports and the City of Los Angeles.”

"I'm thrilled that LA and Ontario are working together to build a thriving series of regional airports," said Councilmember Mike Bonin, who represents LAX and the surrounding communities on the City Council. "Strong regional airports helps alleviate the burden of traffic, noise and air pollution on the communities I represent near LAX and this deal is good for Westside neighborhoods."

In addition to providing mutual benefits to both cities, the Settlement Agreement also ensures that ONT employees will not be negatively impacted by a lapse in airport operation.

“The agreement ensures uninterrupted operations at ONT by providing the 191 Los Angeles World Airports employees with key employee protections and stability during the transition,” said Deborah Flint, executive director of Los Angeles World Airports.  “My staff is committed to working closely and cooperatively with the City of Ontario and the OIAA to allow for a smooth transfer.”
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17873

Mayor Garcetti Announces Expansion of LAPD SMART Teams

Doubling of City-County partnership will enable more effective response to situations involving mental illness.

Beck and Mayor

Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the expansion of the Los Angeles Police Department's SMART (System-Wide Mental Assessment Response Teams) program, which pairs LAPD officers with L.A. County mental health professionals to allow for a more thorough and compassionate response to incidents involving mental illness.

“We must do more to help Angelenos in crisis who are battling mental illness. SMART enables law enforcement to quickly and comprehensively respond to those important calls,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The program supports our officers’ efforts to de-escalate potentially dangerous situations, returns officers to the field more quickly, and helps Angelenos in need get the care and services they deserve. I’m grateful to our County partners for committing to this expansion, and we look forward to building on its success.”

Mayor Garcetti announced the expansion at the Los Angeles County Downtown Mental Health Center alongside County Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Hilda Solis, Councilmember José Huizar, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and Dr. Mitchell Katz, Director of the County’s Department of Health Services. 

The City and County of Los Angeles share personnel to assemble the SMART units. Each team consists of an LAPD officer accompanied by a psychologist, nurse or other clinician from the County Department of Mental Health. The teams respond specifically to incidents involving people who are mentally ill, or provide assistance to the responding officers in the field, with a goal of resolving incidents without incarceration or involuntary hospitalization.

“Our County is committed to humanely treating individuals with mental illness who come into contact with law enforcement; reduce incarceration rates for those whom treatment is more appropriate; and avoid adverse outcomes between law enforcement and those with mental illness,” said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.

The expansion will double the number of LAPD SMART units deployed in the field to 16 cars per day city-wide, seven days a week — enabling them to eventually cover up to 70 percent of all calls that involve people with mental illness.

In 2014, SMART units responded to more than 4,700 calls and saved more than 6,600 hours of patrol time for LAPD.

“The SMART team model — known as MET in the County — is an effective way to offer support to the mentally ill,” said Hilda Solis, Chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. “The County’s recently-adopted plan to divert mentally ill individuals from the criminal justice system and into treatment programs has the potential to help many homeless individuals who suffer from mental disorders that then lead them to incarceration due to addictions or other behaviors. The city of Los Angeles and the county of Los Angeles both stand united in the belief that assisting mentally ill homeless individuals through treatment programs, instead of incarcerating them due to addictions and other behavioral patterns, is a more humane manner of treating these individuals, and in the long run, would help them get back on their feet to gain access to housing and other vital services.”

Support for the SMART program also comes from other components of LAPD’s Mental Health Evaluation Unit (MEU) — including the triage unit, which determines how to dispatch the SMART units most effectively; and the Case Assessment and Management Program (CAMP), which helps connect those coping with mental illnesses to professionals at the County Department of Mental Health.

“The LAPD’S innovative SMART program is a national model, and the City/County partnership that it has successfully fostered is helping us better serve, understand and assist people with mental health issues,” said Councilmember José Huizar, Co-Chair of the City’s Homelessness & Poverty Committee. “And in a City where roughly a third of all homeless individuals are dealing with mental health issues, it is critical that we continue to partner with Los Angeles County’s Mental Health Services, through this and other initiatives, to get people off the streets and into programs and treatment that allow them to live productive and dignified lives.”

The SMART expansion includes a significant commitment of resources from both the City and County. LAPD is allocating additional officers and patrol cars for the SMART teams, and the County is providing clinicians for the teams through state Mental Health Act (Prop. 63) funding.

“Nothing was more frustrating, when I was patrolling these streets as a Police Officer and as Captain, than not having the resources necessary to help a person when they needed the help,” said LAPD Chief Beck. “SMART units give us those tools, and I'm proud that we are collaborating on this important expansion."

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MAYOR GARCETTI STATEMENT ON LAUSD DECISION TO CLOSE ALL CAMPUSES

I understand the concern families must be feeling this morning, but it is critical we remain calm. This decision has been made by the School District in an abundance of caution. As Mayor, we have shared our support and our intelligence and LAPD is working in collaboration with LAUSD School Police to fully investigate this threat. We have also asked our Emergency Operations Center to be activated and we have arranged for MTA to help by providing free bus rides to all LAUSD students. We will continue to monitor this situation. Nothing is more important to me than the safety of our families.

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17865

STATEMENT FROM LOS ANGELES MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI SUPPORTING DWP'S WATER RATE PROPOSAL

In advance of the LADWP Board of Commissioner's consideration of a water rate proposal, Mayor Garcetti issued the following statement:

Since my first day in office, reforming the DWP to increase efficiency and maintain reliability has been a top priority. To do this we need to have an honest conversation about the work that lies ahead, but we must do this in the face of an aging infrastructure and a historic drought that demands swift action.

In July, when DWP released its five-year rate proposal, I said I would support a rate increase that fixed our bursting pipes and encouraged water conservation, while keeping rates affordable. I also promised that Id wait to hear from ratepayers and the independent Ratepayer Advocate, a position I helped to create.

Over the course of almost six months, weve heard from residents at scores of public hearings and the message has been simple  its time to get our house in order. And I agree.

The RPA has called the DWPs rate request just and reasonable. The typical customer will pay less than an average of $3 per month more each year, or $11 a month more at the end of the five-year rate hike. Even with this increase, DWPs water rates will remain some of the lowest in the region.

The RPA has, with my office's support, insisted that the DWP incorporate a set of transparent performance metrics directly into the rate ordinance. For the first time, rate increases can be adjusted and reduced if the DWP does not perform as promised. There will also be a formal rate review after two years to assess if additional changes need to be made.

The DWP proposal will also reward good behavior. By restructuring rates into four tiers we will ensure that those who use less pay less, and that we recover the full costs of providing water to the highest users, including water-wasters.

For all of these reasons, I support DWPs water rate increase proposal. I look forward to the Board taking positive action and City Council acting in a timely manner on this important civic issue.

No one likes to raise rates. But the price of inaction will be much higher for all of LAs residents. 

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17864

MAYOR GARCETTI ANNOUNCES METRO SILVER LINE EXPANSION

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Riders will now be able to travel from San Pedro to Downtown Los Angeles in about an hour — without needing a transfer.

LOS ANGELES—Mayor Eric Garcetti today announced the launch of Metro's Silver Line Express, which will ease the commute between San Pedro and Downtown Los Angeles.

At the launch event, the Mayor joined Metro Board Chair and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, L.A. City Councilmember Joe Buscaino, and Metro CEO Phil Washington.

For a single $2.50 fare, the Silver Line Express will enable riders to enjoy a faster commute between San Pedro and Downtown Los Angeles. Now, Angelenos and visitors can access some of L.A.’s most vibrant communities by bus without needing a transfer.

“Expanding the Silver Line saves time for commuters, connects people to communities, and links workers to jobs,” said Mayor Garcetti, who is also a member of the Metro Board. “Frequent service between San Pedro and the heart of Downtown means fewer people in cars — getting them to their work, families and fun more quickly, while reducing carbon emissions and easing congestion.”

The Silver Line Express will save commuters up to 20 minutes per trip by traveling along ExpressLanes on the Harbor Freeway.

Among the benefits of the expansion is increased frequency of service. The Silver Line Express 950X will run every 20 minutes during weekday rush hours, and every 40 minutes on weekends and holidays. During off-peak hours and evenings, the Silver Line 950X will provide service every 30 minutes. Service between Harbor Gateway, Downtown L.A., and El Monte will remain at current frequencies.

“The extension of the Silver Line to San Pedro will serve to accommodate the increased tourism to the southernmost part of the city,” said Councilmember Joe Buscaino. “The Battleship Iowa alone is drawing a quarter million visitors per year. The redevelopment of Ports O’Call and the LA Waterfront will account for over a million more new visitors. With a commute time of about an hour between San Pedro and Downtown L.A., the Silver Line has the potential to compete with the automobile as an option for faster and cheaper transportation for residents who are used to driving the Harbor Freeway.”

Monday’s announcement was made at the site of USS Iowa in Port of Los Angeles. As part of the launch, the Battleship IOWA Museum will offer free admission to Metro patrons until January 31, 2016.

“The Silver Line Express is a great example of how Metro is exploring new ways to make service better for our customers,” said Metro CEO Phil Washington. “We had two popular lines — the Silver Line and the 450 — and we combined them to improve service, convenience and reach for our patrons. The new line is also taking advantage of the speed offered by another of our projects: the Harbor Freeway ExpressLanes. We know the Silver Line Express is going to be a great benefit to residents of the San Pedro area.”

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STATEMENT FROM LOS ANGELES MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI AND 33 OTHER U.S. #CLIMATEMAYORS ON ADOPTION OF HISTORIC PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT

Moments ago, negotiators at the Conference of Parties (COP21) U.N. climate talks in Paris adopted a final agreement. We want to thank and congratulate President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry--along with their fellow world leaders--for succeeding in the difficult task of creating and adopting a deal that represents historic and meaningful progress to combat climate change.

The agreement will unlock innovation and investment to reduce emissions and help our communities adapt to climate change. We are far from done, however. Cities generate 80% of the world’s GDP, produce 70% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, and house more than 50% of the world’s population. The agreement's ultimate success will depend on local leadership.

As mayors, we will redouble our efforts to protect our communities from diminishing air quality, flooding, fires, extreme weather, famine, drought, economic downturn and other profound risks posed by climate change.  Last week in Paris, more than 500 mayors and municipal representatives from 115 countries gathered at Paris's City Hall to make clear that cities can and will lead on climate by increasing the energy efficiency of our buildings, expanding renewable energy, adding electric vehicles to our fleets, and leading the search for other solutions besides.

Thanks to the latest additions of Pittsburgh, Pa. and Eugene, Ore., our domestic Mayors National Climate Action Agenda is now 34 mayors strong. Collectively we represent more than 27 million Americans, a mayor-to-mayor initiative that offers a collaborative forum to share best practices and lessons learned. By our example in reporting and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, we are building political will across the nation. And with this, we are bringing technical innovation, lower utility bills and new green jobs to the residents of our cities. 

As "Climate Mayors", we will implement the new agreement, as we continue to work tirelessly with those we represent to find bigger and bolder ways to combat climate change.  We will also continue to push back against Congress's shortsighted efforts to reverse course, most recently on President Obama's Clean Power Plan. And we will continue to share our ideals globally through our work with the leadership of more than 400 cities worldwide which have signed the Compact of Mayors.

It is by leading on climate action in our cities that we will build a healthier, more prosperous, more competitive America. 

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17857

West Coast Mayors Announce Creation of New Alliance to Address Growing Crisis of Homelessness

West Coast Alliance of Mayors

Mayors from five West Coast cities today announced the creation of an alliance of West Coast mayors united in addressing the growing crisis of homelessness.
 
The alliance was developed during the first West Coast Mayors Summit, a two-day convening of mayors from Portland, Seattle, Eugene, San Francisco and Los Angeles to discuss pressing issues affecting each of their cities: homelessness, housing, and climate action.
 
Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti stand committed to leveraging their power to address the growing crisis of homelessness and housing affordability in their communities.
 
“Up and down the West Coast we are facing a crisis of unaffordability in housing,” Mayor Hales said. “Each of our cities has taken unprecedented steps to respond to the urgent issues of homelessness and housing affordability; in Portland, for example, we opened a shelter for women in just over one month. But we need federal support to address root causes and help protect our most vulnerable community members.”

The West Coast Alliance of Mayors will be a bipartisan coalition working to raise awareness of common issues. First on the agenda is elevating the importance of homelessness and housing in their communities and among their federal delegations. It would be committed to data collection and sharing — getting the right data for the West Coast — and sharing of best practices. 
 
“We have come together today to rally around a common crisis that impacts everyone in our community and with thousands of residents demanding our leadership,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “In Los Angeles we are pursuing all avenues to address our homelessness crisis, and as result we have housed more than 11,000 people in the last 23 months, including more than 5,500 homeless veterans but there is still so much more to do. This new alliance allows us to share new strategies to tackle this and other critical issues. It also gives us a platform to amplify our collective voices to demand the resources we need from our federal partners to solve this crisis once and for all.”  
 
Following discussions with U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro and Matthew Doherty, Executive Director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, the mayors asked for the federal government’s full partnership in their efforts. A joint statement from the mayors seeks support from federal partners to increase funding for affordable housing development; increase funding for rent assistance and supportive services for homeless people; and increase the flexibility of federal regulations so that programs can better meet the unique needs of each city.
 
“Too often cities are forced to backfill state and federal cuts,” Mayor Murray said. “In Seattle, local resources represented less than 40 percent of the total funding for homelessness services a decade ago. Today, we are now responsible for over 60 percent of homelessness investments. Untreated mental health and drug addiction has finally resulted in a human crisis seldom seen in our history. As West Coast mayors, we stand united in calling for a reengaged and vigorous effort by the federal government. Cities cannot solve a national crisis by themselves.”
 
During the day's discussions, each mayor identified strategies and programs that are working in their communities to address street homelessness, veterans’ homelessness, and housing affordability. 

“In Eugene we are close to meeting our goal of housing 365 veterans in in 2015. This is a direct result of new federal resources, such as additional vouchers to assist with housing costs and grant funds to support housing stability," said Eugene Mayor Piercy. "Given these and other successes in our region, we are asking that the same federal policy and financial support be directed toward all individuals experiencing homelessness." 
 
The West Coast Alliance of Mayors will institutionalize data collection and information exchange, supporting a shared federal agenda. West Coast mayors involved in the summit will take what they have learned to the U.S. Conference of Mayors conference in January.

“As mayors of West Coast cities, we share a commitment to do everything within our power to address the growing crisis of homelessness and housing affordability in our communities,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. “Without a doubt San Francisco has changed many lives for the better. We have pioneered models of care like the Navigation Center that provides every service needed in one place. We are grateful for the level of support we have received from our Federal partners, including HUD and the US Interagency Council on Homelessness, and the exchanges with other West Coast mayors on best practices to address this crisis. All of us are called upon to do more, and we look forward to overcoming the growing challenge of homelessness together with compassion and care.”
 
Mayors Hales, Garcetti, Murray, Piercy and Lee detailed their shared federal agenda and other action items at a press conference held Thursday afternoon at Portland City Hall.

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Mayor Garcetti Announces Award for 'Resilience by Design'

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced today that his Resilience by Design seismic preparedness plan has been awarded the “Extraordinary Innovation in Development of a Community Earthquake Safety Program” award by the Applied Technology Council (ATC) and the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

"Los Angeles leads the nation for earthquake preparedness, resilience, and safety," said Mayor Garcetti. "This recognition from ATC and SEI shows we are moving in the right direction by turning resilience research into bold action. We will be prepared when the 'Big One' hits, as we continue fortifying our buildings, protecting our water supply, and bolstering our telecommunications."

The award comes near the one-year anniversary of Resilience by Design, which was released on Dec. 8, 2014. The report addresses Los Angeles’ greatest earthquake vulnerabilities — including building retrofitting and steps to secure the city’s water supply and communications infrastructure.

Development of the report was led by Dr. Lucy Jones, a renowned United States Geological Survey seismologist. Jones, who served as Mayor Garcetti’s Science Advisor for Seismic Safety, assembled technical experts and consulted with businesses, property owners, and other stakeholders to help inform the City’s action steps.

“Los Angeles is taking critically important steps to develop and implement resilience-building measures that are strengthening our city, so we are better equipped to withstand earthquakes and other hazards,” said Marissa Aho, L.A.’s Chief Resilience Officer. 

In October, Mayor Garcetti signed a historic ordinance that made Los Angeles the first city to mandate the retrofit of non-ductile reinforced concrete buildings. The law, which also requires retrofitting of approximately 13,500 soft-first story buildings constructed before 1980, addresses two primary recommendations in Resilience by Design. By incorporating these best practices, to substantially reduce the number of buildings that could collapse in a significant seismic event, the City of Los Angeles is leading the way in protecting Angelenos’ lives and property. 

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17850

Mayor Eric Garcetti And City Council Approve Emergency Spending On Homeless Housing And Shelter

With winter storms approaching, funds will go towards rental assistance and temporary shelter expansion to help get individuals off the street.

Mayor Eric Garcetti & City Council Approve Emergency Spending on Homeless Housing and Shelter

Mayor Eric Garcetti was joined by Los Angeles City Council members and homeless service providers today to announce the approval of $12.4 million in emergency homeless relief funding, which will be used this winter to help get Angelenos off the street and out of harm’s way. With El Niño winter storms expected to hit the Southland in the coming weeks, the new funding will help expand temporary housing and other critical services as the City continues working toward long-term strategies to fight homelessness.

“We will not be intimidated by the scale of this problem, or listen to those who say it is intractable,” said Mayor Garcetti. “We must remain laser-focused on solving this crisis — both on the short-term fixes and long-term strategies that will keep our residents safe and off the streets.”

The majority of this funding, $10 million, will be used for City-sponsored rapid rehousing subsidies — the first time Los Angeles has ever used general fund dollars to cover these costs. This housing assistance will also be used to cover move-in costs for people who find housing, and will include targeted funding to help house homeless veterans. This new funding is expected to house nearly 1,000 homeless individuals.

Funding will also be used to increase winter shelter beds in Los Angeles by more than 50 percent, bringing the City’s total to 1,300. The goal is to provide these beds to people living in high-risk locations — including the L.A. riverbed and the Tujunga and Arroyo Seco washes.

“As Co-Chair of the Homelessness and Poverty Committee, I will be focusing on the implementation of our strategic plan being released early next year and in collaboration with the County, we will create a better safety net to keep people off of the streets,” said Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. “This is just the beginning of the funds we hope to release to bring about real change to the people living on the streets here in Skid Row, South Los Angeles, the Westside and Valley. There is no question that we need to not only provide housing and supportive services for our homeless individuals, but we have to plug the hole and stop people from falling into homelessness as well.”

“The money we allocated today is a down payment on our $100 million commitment to fund a Strategic Plan for Homelessness in the City of Los Angeles,” said Councilmember José Huizar, who represents Skid Row and serves as Co-Chair of the Homelessness & Poverty Committee. “While some of this money helps prepare long-term infrastructure to address homelessness, the bulk of the money is for immediate actions to help people get off of the streets. With the support of the Mayor, the H & P Committee is working on creating the necessary institutional knowledge and infrastructure to address homelessness Citywide. This comprehensive plan will be released in January.”

As this short-term spending plan is being finalized, City and County leaders are also wrapping a series of meetings held over the last three months to develop coordinated policy recommendations for a long-term strategy to address homelessness across the region. In early January, the City’s Chief Administrative Officer and the County’s Chief Executive Officer are expected to release these overview recommendations.

“No one person or agency can solve this crisis alone. We are in this together to ensure that every Angeleno has a secure place to sleep at night,” Mayor Garcetti said.

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Statement from Mayor Eric Garcetti on the 150th Anniversary of the 13th Amendment

“Today’s anniversary of the 13th Amendment presents us with a timely moment to affirm our stand against inequality and intolerance. President Obama’s eloquent words remind Angelenos, and all Americans, that covenants of hope and the march toward justice are essential to the national character. It is our obligation as citizens to resist any call to divide ourselves, one against another, for political expediency or any motivation that is beneath the dignity of all who call this nation home. On this and every day, we should seek new opportunities to live the values that draw us closer as friends and neighbors, brothers and sisters.” — Mayor Eric Garcetti

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17837

Statement from Mayor Garcetti on Approval of A New Salary and Pension Agreement with Coalition of City Unions

“Today, the City Council has approved a strong and fiscally responsible deal with the Coalition of City Unions that replaces risk and uncertainty in our budget with guaranteed long-term savings. By holding the line on raises and securing pension and salary reforms we will be saving more than $16 billion, and this agreement puts the city in a position to restore and sustain the critical services that Angelenos deserve. It is a win for our residents, our employees and our City. I look forward to signing this, and to continue efforts to address our City's long term financial stability with common sense reform."

- Mayor Eric Garcetti

 

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Colin Sweeney
August 01, 2013 5:03 PM