Monday, June 29, 2009

New Elysian Valley Bike Path

Today, I attended a groundbreaking for the new Elysian Valley Bike Path. Situated along the west bank of the Los Angeles River from Fletcher Drive to Barclay Street, the path extends to a total distance of eight miles.

The path has existed as a walkway for several decades, but this project, which will be completed at the end of the year, will improve the pathway with a new smooth surface, lighting, traffic markings, signs, and new landscaping.

This path will make biking a safer and easier transportation option for Angelenos, and I encourage Elysian Valley residents, river advocates, and bike enthusiasts to take advantage of this terrific new community resource and to enjoy the outdoors.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Drew-Estara Block Party This Saturday

Come join the fun down on the corner of Drew and Estara Streets this Saturday June 27th, from 10a.m.- 2p.m.

Our summer block party will include a live DJ, games, face painting, a raffle for kids, a performance by Young Loke, and a special guest appearance by Captain William Murphy of the LAPD Northeast Division

Enjoy this special event because summer is the perfect time to hang out with neighborhood friends and families!

PATH’s Project YIMBY Connect Day

Today, hundreds of volunteers participated in PATH’s Project YIMBY (Yes! In My Backyard) Connect Day at the Music Box Fonda Theatre in Hollywood. PATH’s Connect Day is an annual event that connects homeless individuals to service providers in Hollywood. The estimated 800 homeless participants were provided with everything from food and clothing to medical exams and housing resources. In these tough economic times, it’s more important than ever to make sure that all Angelenos have a safe place to live. The best way to end homelessness is to coordinate our efforts to reach as many people in possible - and my office helped a host of other stakeholders in putting together the day's activities. By connecting homeless individuals and families directly to services, we can help alleviate the impact that homelessness has on our families and our communities.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

LAHSA Ranked as One of U.S.'s Top High Schools!

The Los Angeles High School of the Arts (LAHSA), a pilot school in its second year of operation, has been ranked as a top U.S. High School by Newsweek. Located within the Belmont High School campus, the school focuses its curriculum around the performing and technical theater arts. Through the hard work and dedication of the faculty, staff, and students, LAHSA has been ranked 320 on this list, with only one other school in the entire Los Angeles Unified School District ranked higher. Congratulations LAHSA on your extraordinary achievement!

New Bike Parking in Hollywood!

In an effort to help Angelenos choose alternative modes of transportation, yesterday we installed more than 50 new bicycle racks on Hollywood Boulevard between La Brea and Vine. The city’s Department of Transportation worked with my office to developed a pilot program that transforms parking meters made obsolete by the city’s new Park-and-Pay system into new bicycle racks. To expand bicycle parking capacity, the Los Angeles Department of Transportation is installing “meter hitches” that convert the poles of former parking meters into bike racks.

This new program will provide more bicycle parking to make it easier for residents and visitors who want to use bikes to get around our neighborhood.

Don’t forget to ride safely!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Barnsdall Park Summer Events

This summer, Barnsdall Art Park is hosting an exciting line up of fun events. Be sure to bring your family along and stop by any of the following events:

  • Free family art workshops every Sunday from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. offered by Barnsdall Art/ Friends of the Junior Arts Center (FOJAC) and the Barnsdall Art Park Foundation. For more information click here.

  • Wine tastings every Friday from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., courtesy of Silverlake Wine. Tickets are $15 in advance up to six hours prior to the event and $25 online or at the door. Some of the profits from the wine tasting will go to support programs at the park. For information on tickets, click here.

  • Independent Shakespeare Co.’s production of The Tempest and Henry V on Fridays-Sundays at 7:30 p.m. from June 26 - August 30. For more information, read my previous blogs or click here.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Welcoming NALEO to Los Angeles

This morning in Council, I was pleased to welcome the 26th Annual National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Conference to Hollywood. The Conference will be held in Hollywood from June 25 to 27.

Since 1976, NALEO has provided a forum for the Nation’s Leading Latino policymakers to collaborate, share resources, and discuss the issues that affect the Latino community. The 6,000 NALEO members hold some of the most important political offices in this country.

Los Angeles is home to one of the largest Latino communities in the country and NALEO’s Annual Conference could not have been held in a more fitting location this year.

Welcome to Hollywood, NALEO, and I hope you have time to enjoy some of the world class attractions in the neighborhood when you’re here!

Opportunity to help animals!

The PAGE Project is collecting the following items to be distributed to rescue groups & individuals dedicated to animal welfare, including Brittany Foundation, BunnyLuv Rabbit Resource Center, Doberman Rescue Los Angeles, FixNation, German Shepherd Rescue Orange County, Pet Hope, PURRfect Solutions Feline Rescue, and Rottweiler Rescue:

  • Clean used blankets, towels & sheets (bagged or boxed)
  • Crates, carriers & kennels (all sizes)
  • Dog & cat food – dry & canned (unopened)
  • New & used collars, leashes & doggie sweaters
  • Healthy treats & chew toys
  • Frontline/Frontline Plus & Advantage
  • Cleaning supplies & trash bags
  • Cat litter (unopened)
  • Gift cards & postage stamps

The collection will take place tomorrow (Saturday, June 20) from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the Actors and Others for Animals parking lot off Beck (11523 Burbank Blvd., North Hollywood).

Support Independent Shakespeare

All the world’s a stage - well, at least Barnsdall Park is! Since 2003, Independent Shakespeare has brought free Shakespeare productions to Barnsdall Park each summer. Over 12,000 Angelenos enjoyed their performances last year. This summer they will be performing The Tempest and Henry V from June 26-August 30. Read my previous blog post on Independent Shakespeare here.

Due to the tough economic times, Independent Shakespeare’s donations are down, and they are trying to fill their budget gap for the 2009 season. Please consider donating to support this terrific Los Angeles based classical theater company. Donations of $10 or more are especially appreciated. To donate click here.

Keep gas tax revenues local!

Governor Schwarzenegger slipped a last minute plan into his budget that would allow the state to take a portion of local governments’ tax revenues.

Gas tax revenues provide nearly $750 million in funding to local governments and fund services related to traffic improvements. Although we all understand the gravity of the state’s financial problems, our cities are hurting too, and a reduction in our already dwindling funds would have severe and very real consequences. I am especially troubled by the Governor’s proposal because the state would not even be required to pay back the funds.

Contact state leaders to tell them to keep their hands off local gas tax revenues! We need to find solutions that protect our cities.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Volunteers Needed for Homeless Connect Day

The fourth annual Project Yes In My Backyard (Y!MBY) Homeless Connect Day will be happening on Thursday, June 25.

Project Y!MBY Connect Day brings together local private and public service providers and hundreds of volunteers in one location, for one day of coordinated services for the homeless. This event will provide homeless individuals with everything from food and clothing to medical exams and permanent housing resources, and they need your help!

The event coordinators are looking for community volunteers to help with the following:

  • Set up
  • Check-in
  • Runners
  • Client support
  • Clean up
  • Exit surveys

This year’s Connect Day will be held at the Music Box (6126 Hollywood Blvd.), and volunteering shifts are flexible between 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This is a wonderful opportunity to help better our community and connect homeless individuals to the assistance, amenities and services that they need!

To sign up, please visit and click on “Homeless Connect Day – Register Now” on the bottom left corner.

The Hollywood Hot Spot

Starting July 8th, the Hollywood Hot Spot hits our neighborhood! All local high school students are invited to participate in the free activities offered at our brand new Helen Bernstein High School.

Learn how to play the drums, guitar, and more with our Rock Band Sessions happening Wednesday to Friday 4 p.m.-6 p.m., and Saturday 1 p.m.-7 p.m., or come to our Urban Art Workshops from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 7 p.m.-10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday to learn how to paint with acrylic, oil, and spray paints.

In conjunction with Nike and their Breakfast Club (Runs and Games at the Montalban at 10 a.m. on Sundays), field games will be happening at Helen Bernstein High School most Sundays from 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. as well.

Throughout the summer, Generation Obama LA will also be hosting movie screenings, DJ-ing workshops, and much more.

I look forward to seeing the innovative art and music projects that our high school students create, and experiencing the excitement of sports activities with all of you!

If you are interested in participating in any events please sign up with Charlotte at or 323-957-4500

Hollywood Community Studio Open House

Next Thursday, June 25, the Hollywood Community Studio (1517 Crossroads of the World, 6671 Sunset Boulevard) will be holding an open house where people can learn more about the Studio and to discuss the future of Hollywood.

The Hollywood Community Studio is a research and resource center dedicated to the Hollywood community.

Enjoy snacks and refreshments and meet your Hollywood neighbors and other people working to improve the neighborhood.

The open house will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. To RSVP, send an email to

City of LA working to win federal economic recovery funds

Our city is currently applying for grants through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and working to allocate funds we have already received in a way that will help us strengthen our economy. To date, the city of Los Angeles has been awarded over $289 million in grants.
Among the projects that we have submitted to receive federal ARRA funding are:
  • $19.2 million in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) for a variety of economic recovery purposes such as repairing sidewalks, attracting new businesses, and providing foreclosure relief to homeowners
  • $18.3 million for LADOT Fast Charge Electric and Hybrid Electric buses, including increasing sustainability features for the DOT bus maintenance facility
  • $4.2 million for the Homeless Alternative to Living on the Street (HALO) program in Hollywood, a partnership between L.A. County Public Defender’s Office and the L.A. City Attorney’s Office that helps place individuals with mental health problems, into treatment, rehabilitation, and housing assistance programs.
The City Council's Ad Hoc Committee on Economic Recovery and Reinvestment meets on Fridays at 9 a.m. to develop and evaluate our grant applications and allocations. The public is welcome to attend these meetings. For more information please visit the city's economic recovery website.

Hollywood Cap Park community-wide meeting

The Hollywood Cap Park was the subject of a semester-long project for the USC School of Architecture Master Landscape Studio Class and all are invited to come see the results of the students' hard work.

The event will happen on Saturday, July 11, 2009 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Historic Fountain Court (1370 North St. Andrews Place, Hollywood). To RSVP, please contact Laurie Goldman.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Lakers Parade Street Closures

Tomorrow morning, expect the streets of Los Angeles to be a sea of purple and gold as Angelenos come together to celebrate the Lakers’ NBA Championship title at the Victory Parade.

You can find a list of street closures and a map of the parade route here.

MTA has also released a list of planned service changes relating to the parade, available here.

Congratulations to the Lakers! I’m looking forward to a safe and fun celebration!

Hail-a-Taxi in Hollywood!

Yesterday, with the help of Hollywood businesses and community stakeholders, my office launched a new 3-month sign program to promote Hollywood’s Hail-a-Taxi project.

Hail-a-Taxi is a pilot program that allows taxis to pick up passengers in restricted zones, including red-curb areas. Yesterday afternoon, volunteers installed more than 200 signs on poles throughout Hollywood to encourage the use of taxicabs and further promote the program.

Now, pedestrians in Hollywood can hail a taxi as easily as they can in other major cities in the world. I am very excited that visitors and residents in Hollywood will have more transportation options and will be able to more easily enjoy the world class attractions, shopping and dining in this community!

Help prevent West Nile Virus – eliminate stagnant water around your home!

Stagnant water is dark-green to black in color and its murky appearance comes from the bacteria and organic matter allowed to grow in the unattended water. Any water left unattended and untreated for several days can become a breeding ground for potentially dangerous, disease-transmitting mosquitoes.

Here are several ways you can prevent water from becoming stagnant:

  • Clean out and refill water in bird baths and animal dishes at least once a week.
  • Remove or turn over any empty plant containers.
  • Maintain your swimming pools and spas using proper filtration and chlorination.
  • Clean out animal troughs, rain gutters and eaves.
  • Maintain vegetation to ensure proper drainage.

If you find stagnant water in small containers, turn them over and dump that water out. For larger sources that cannot be dumped or drained, such as swimming pools, please report them to the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District so that they can ensure that public health risks do not arise.

To contact the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District call 562.944.9656 or visit their website.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Mark your calendars for the L.A. Business Council Annual Sustainability Summit - June 29

On Monday, June 29, the Los Angeles Business Council will be holding its annual Sustainability Summit. This year’s event is entitled Building a Green Economy: Energy, Transportation, and Innovation, and speakers will include U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer and L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

The event will be held at the Howard M. Williams Auditorium at the Getty Museum from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

To register for this event, visit the Los Angeles Busines Council website.

2009 Hollywood Economic Development Summit

On Wednesday, June 24, I will speak at the Hollywood Economic Development Summit which will examine the “Hollywood brand" and focus on the ways that Tinsel Town can continue to attract development despite the tough national economy.

Sponsored by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, this year’s summit will be held at Arclight Hollywood from 8:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce at (323) 469-8311 or online here.

Friday, June 12, 2009

111th Anniversary of Philippine Independence!

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Today in Council, I presented a resolution with Councilmember Huizar to recognize Philippine Independence Day and the contributions that Filipino Americans have made to the City of Los Angeles. On this date in 1898, Philippine leader Emilio Aguinaldo declared independence of the Philippines from Spain, and today we celebrate independence and freedom in the Philippines and in Los Angeles. Our city is home to the largest number of Filipinos living outside the Philippines, and I am particularly honored to have Historic Filipinotown in my district. I was very pleased to see Philippine Consul General Mary Jo Bernardo Aragon in Council Chambers this morning. Mabuhay!

Community meeting re: 710 freeway tunnel

In June 2008, Caltrans and Metro began the SR-710 Tunnel Technical Study to examine the possibility of extending the SR-710 using a tunnel. The purpose of the study is to consider all practical routes for extending the SR-710 using a tunnel based on soil and subsurface conditions.

The study considers several different alternatives in a route-neutral manner (meaning they will study multiple routes including those that connect to the 210 freeway) and includes the cities of Alhambra, Glendale, La CaƱada Flintridge, Los Angeles, Monterey Park, San Marino, Pasadena and South Pasadena.

While there are currently no plans to build a tunnel, some CD13 residents have expressed concern about the possibility of a tunnel impacting Los Angeles neighborhoods. If you have concerns, or would like to learn more I encourage you to attend the community meeting next Tuesday in Northeast Los Angeles. Here are the details:

Northeast Los Angeles Community Meeting
Date: Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Time: 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Location: Ramona Hall, 4580 N. Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA 90031

If you have any questions about the technical study, please check the project website at or contact the SR-710 Study Information Office located at 3412 North Eastern Avenue. It is open to the public and staff is available to provide the latest information about the study and upcoming meetings.

Properly discard analog televisions!

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Today, when broadcasting shifts from analog to digital, the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation wants to remind residents to properly discard analog televisions, antennas, and other electronic equipment. The Bureau of Sanitation has six S.A.F.E. (Solvents, Automotives, Flammables and Electronics) Centers in Los Angeles for the disposal of hazardous waste. The Bureau of Sanitation recycles a large amount of material from electronic waste, and there is no charge to individuals who discard hazardous waste at their facilities.

For more information and to find the S.A.F.E. Center closest to you, please visit the Bureau of Sanitation’s website here or call 1-800-98-TOXIC.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Give $5 to LA’s BEST by June 30!

LA’s BEST, our city's nationally-recognized after school program that serves over 28,000 Los Angeles children, is participating in the U.S. Open Access Challenge 2009. If LA’s BEST can raise $4,000 from at least 50 different donors by June 30, they will receive a permanent spot on, and will gain access to a broader spectrum of donors. All funds raised will benefit LA’s BEST After School Arts Program, which brings artists to LA’s BEST sites for 10-week programs in visual and performing arts.

To donate, please click here. Donations of $5 and up are especially appreciated.

Arts at the Park After Dark

Last night, I co-hosted a summer concert fundraiser at Barnsdall Park in partnership with Generation Obama to support our Summer Night Lights anti-gang program

Summer Night Lights offers summer programming for young people, keeping recreation centers and parks open later hours for the summer months. This year, the program will be expanding to serve kids in 16 locations throughout the city.

We raised more than $35,000 at last night’s event, and it was great to see so much community support. It was especially wonderful to hear from one of last year’s program participants, Charlie Quispe, a student at Marshall High School, who talked about his experience in the program last summer.

A big thank you to our generous sponsors Kaiser Permanente and the Community Redevelopment Agency for their support.

2nd Annual Celebrating Women in Business Event

On Thursday, June 25, all are invited to acknowledge the accomplishments of Los Angeles women business owners at the 2nd Annual Celebrating Women in Business event. Women & Co. Equity Awards will also be presented by the Citi Foundation and Women & Co.

The event will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and features exhibitors, an awards presentation, and an opportunity to network.

For ticket information, please click here

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Help Kids: Eat at Masa!

On Tuesday, June 16, help make a difference in Echo Park by eating lunch or dinner (or both!) at Masa of Echo Park (1800 West Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles). From 11 a.m.-11 p.m. 20 percent of all proceeds will be donated to the Echo Park Recreation Center for youth scholarships and youth program equipment.

This delectable fundraiser is organized by the Echo Park Recreation Center, the Park Advisory Board, and Masa.

For more information please contact Masa at (213) 989-1558 or the Echo Park Recreation Center at (213) 250-3578.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Los Angeles Public Library’s New “Job-Hunting Guide”

The Los Angeles Public Library has created an extensive database listing of more than 200 employment-related websites and resources. The “Job-Hunting Guide” is divided into five sections:

  • Coping with unemployment (financial and health care issues)
  • Where to look for jobs
  • Exploring career opportunities (education and training),
  • Researching potential employers
  • Job hunting skills, interviewing, resumes, cover letters, and dress for success.

This online tool is an excellent resource for anyone currently seeking employment. The listings have been researched for accuracy, and should provide valuable information about possible job openings in the Los Angeles community and surrounding areas.

Employers with job opportunities can also use this resource to find potential employees.

The guide can be found here: Job-Hunting Guide.

CCYF Kid Watch L.A. Volunteer Event

Today, I attended the Kid Watch L.A. Volunteer Recognition Event, which honored and celebrated parents and volunteers whose participation in the program helps kids get safely to and from school.

Kid Watch L.A. is a comprehensive approach to child safety that includes a “Safety Valet” at schools to help children get in and out of cars carefully, while ensuring that traffic runs smoothly. Kid Watch L.A. also encourages parents to walk their children to school, creating less traffic and pollution while supporting a healthy lifestyle.

In the past two years the program has grown from 50 schools and a few hundred volunteers to over 140 schools with thousands of active parent volunteers. Schools in my district with Kid Watch programs include: Atwater Elementary School, Frank Del Omo Elementary School, Lockwood Elementary School, and Harvard Elementary School.

I was very excited to see hundreds of volunteers at this event, and most importantly I am looking forward to seeing this program grow, ultimately making it safer for more of our city’s children to get to and from school.

State Route 2 Freeway Terminus Improvement Project Community Workshops

Metro and Caltrans have developed plans to help reduce traffic congestion near the end of the 2 freeway on Glendale Boulevard, and the 45-day comment period on the proposal will end on July 2.

Community members who want to learn more about the SR-2 Freeway Terminus project and/or provide input on the proposal can attend a community workshop tonight, June 9, at Mayberry Elementary School or on Thursday, June 11, at Barlow Hospital from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The workshops will be conducted in an open house format, and expert staff will be available to answer questions.

There will also be a public hearing on Tuesday, June 16, at Mayberry Elementary School from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

If you have any comments about the project, please email them to Irv Taylor. For more information, you can also visit the Metro website.

The Breakfast Club Sponsored by Nike

Nike Running and Nike Sportswear have teamed up to bring high school students The Breakfast Club: Runs, Games and Adventures in Hollywood. The club is a weekly program where all high school students are invited to come running and get strong with drills, hills, and running games.

The Breakfast Club meets on Sundays at 10a.m.- 12:30p.m. at the Montalban Theater (1615 Vine Street) in Hollywood.

Breakfast and activities are free for participants, along with a pair of the latest Nike shoes to take for a test run.

For more information visit the Nike Running LA Myspace page or the Nike Running LA Facebook page and to RSVP e-mail

Nike is also starting a Breakfast Club at Bernstein High, which will be part of the innovative summer programming sponsored by the City of Los Angeles and Council District 13. Stay tuned for more information.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Grand Opening of the Fountain Community Gardens

Originally uploaded by CD-13
On Saturday, I attended the grand opening of Fountain Community Gardens, Hollywood’s newest community garden space. The new community garden was built on formerly abandoned land, and adds more green space to one of the park poorest neighborhoods of Los Angeles. The property provides 60 garden plots to almost 100 gardeners, most of whom live within walking distance. The garden also features a native landscaped area, a children’s play area, mulch center, and more than 20 fruit trees.

Building the garden was a collaborative effort. Young people who are part of LA Conservation Corps worked more than 1,600 hours on the project. Most of the garden plots are shared between friends and neighbors. My office also worked in partnership with many generous sponsors from the community. As the summer continues, I’m looking forward to seeing many more flowers and friendships bloom in this space!

LADWP Business Development Expo and Workshop

On Tuesday, June 9, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is hosting its annual Business Development Expo and Workshop. This free workshop will focus on how to do business with the LADWP, and the programs, products, and services the LADWP offers. This will also be an opportunity for business owners to learn about upcoming contract opportunities that range from power and water system projects, renewable energy, energy conservation, and water quality. The workshop will be held from 4-9 pm at the John Ferraro Building located at 111 North Hope Street in the Auditorium on A-level. For more information contact Ms. Winifred J. Yancy at (213) 367-0025.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Annual Inner City Law Center Awards Luncheon

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Today, I was truly honored to receive the Katharine Krause Award from the Inner City Law Center at its annual awards luncheon. The Inner City Law Center serves over 2,000 homeless and working poor individuals and families each year. They are the only full-time provider of legal services headquartered on Skid Row.

I am very proud of the work that I’ve done in partnership with the Inner City Law Center to help combat homelessness. We’ve fought to keep homeless shelters open year-round, to toughen the Ellis Act which protects tenants from eviction, and to help Angelenos who have been challenged by the national foreclosure crisis. I’m looking forward to working together with the Inner City Law Center in the future to help even more Los Angeles residents.

Field Will Open for Summer Sports at Helen Bernstein High School

Originally uploaded by CD-13

Finding a place to play summer sports just got easier!

The new synthetic field at Helen Bernstein High School will be available for use by community organizations this summer, Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m., and on Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Priority will be given to youth organizations, and all requests should be submitted ASAP to Sonya Young-Jimenez, (323) 666-4144.

Groundbreaking for New Children’s Institute Campus in HistoricFilipinotown

Originally uploaded by CD-13

Yesterday, I attended the groundbreaking for the Otis Booth Campus of Children’s Institute, a community service organization that provides a supportive, safe, and nurturing environment for more than 15,000 children recovering from trauma related to violence in their homes and communities. (In this picture, I’m with Mary Emmons, President and CEO of Children’s Institute, and Colleen Bell, a member of the Children’s Institute Board of Trustees.)

The Otis Booth Campus will allow Children’s Institute to significantly increase the number of children it serves. The new 48,000 square foot, LEED-certified campus is scheduled to open its doors in 2010. It will have space for a teen center, health center, and a family resource center. And, as an avid basketball player, I was very excited to hear that the plans for the new center also include a basketball court!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Arts at the Park after Dark- A Summer Night Lights benefit

Originally uploaded by CD-13
On Wednesday June 10, I will be hosting Arts at the Park After Dark, an event in partnership with Generation Obama Los Angeles at Barnsdall Art Park (4800 Hollywood Blvd.) to benefit the Summer Night Lights Gang Reduction and Youth Development Program. The event will be emceed by Brian White, and special guests will include Chris Pierce, Audible Mainframe, Warpaint, and KCRW DJ Jeremy Sole.

Summer Night Lights is an innovative gang reduction and youth development program that provides arts and recreational programming at city parks throughout Los Angeles during the times when young people are most likely to be involved in or victims of gang violence. Research has shown that young people are most likely to commit gang violence between the hours to 4 p.m. to midnight, and the Summer Night Lights programs will provide a safe and fun environment for at-risk youth during these hours for 9-weeks this summer.

The Arts at the Park after Dark event will run from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. VIP tickets are $150 and General Admission tickets are $25. All donations are tax deductible. To RSVP, send an email to or call (323) 957-4500.

Summer Fun at Camp Guppy 2009

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Are your kids looking for a great place to have fun this summer? There’s still time to enroll in Camp Guppy 2009! Camp Guppy is an 8-week summer camp for kids ages 7-12, and will be held from July 6th-August 28th at the Elysian Valley Recreation Center (1811 Ripple Street). The camp will have different themes each week including Wet-n-Wild, Rock-Star/Camp Idol and Pirate Adventure. Every Thursday, kids will go on exciting field trips to places such as Hurricane Harbor and Disneyland. Every Friday is swim day!

Camp Guppy will run Mondays to Fridays, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., with extended care available for an additional charge. The weekly camp fee is $50 per child (lunch and one t-shirt included), with a one time registration fee of $20. For more information call 323-666-5058.

New water conservation incentives through LADWP

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) is offering new incentives to encourage customers to replace grass lawns with drought tolerant plants.

The new Residential Drought Resistant Landscaping Program will offer single family residential customers $1 for each square foot of turf that they remove and replace with drought tolerant plants, mulching, or water-permeable hardscapes. Customer’s plans must be approved by the LADWP prior to installation, and LADWP Water Conservation staff will conduct pre- and post-installation audits of all applicants’ landscapes.

For more information on how you can participate in the Residential Drought Resistant Landscape Incentive Program, call 888-376-3314. To find out about other LADWP rebate and incentive opportunities visit

Monday, June 01, 2009

Mandatory Water Conservation is Here

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Starting today, all Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) water customers are subject to mandatory water conservation regulations including the restriction of outdoor watering to Mondays and Thursdays only.

The shortage year water rates pricing schedule will reduce all LADWP water customer’s allocations by 15 percent and will raise the rate for any water used beyond the allocation. Customers who conserve water will not be impacted financially, and customers already conserving 15 percent will not be affected by the new measures.

Watering with sprinklers will be restricted to Mondays and Thursdays, but hand watering (using garden hoses with shut-off nozzle devices) is exempted. All outdoor watering is now prohibited between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

You can find your allocation by calling 1-800-DIAL-DWP or by visiting

Reform Immigration for America Campaign Kick-Off

Originally uploaded by CD-13
Today, I attended a launch event for the Reform Immigration for America Campaign, a national effort that is bringing together activists from nearly 200 national, regional, and local organizations to build support for comprehensive immigration reform. The event in Los Angeles was organized by the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRA).

Volunteers needed for food distribution in Hollywood

On Friday, the Bronson Foodbank in Hollywood will distribute canned food, beans, rice and other items free of charge to people in need. Volunteers are needed to help pack food at 4 p.m. at the Bronson Family Apartments (1229 N. Bronson Ave.) For more information about receiving food or volunteering, please contact Matthew Valdez at Los Angeles Housing Partnership.

Meet in the Middle 4 Equality Kick-Off

Originally uploaded by CD-13
On Saturday, I joined thousands of Californians at the kick-off of the statewide grassroots Meet in the Middle 4 Equality event, organized in response to the recent California Supreme Court case that upheld Proposition 8.

Activists from all over the state traveled to Fresno in solidarity with the LGBT community. There, they canvassed neighborhoods to raise awareness and understanding of the LGBT community and the fight for marriage equality.

This was just another step in the long march toward full equality for this community--we will continue to fight for same-sex couples to have the same rights under the law as other couples.