Friday, January 29, 2010

City Year Elysian Park clean up

This morning, City Year, a division of Americorps, had 150 volunteers participate in an extensive clean up in Elysian Park. City Year has also performed clean ups in other Los Angeles neighborhoods, including East Hollywood, Historic Filipinotown and Elysian Valley.

City Year volunteers sign up for full-time service over a period of 10 months. Volunteers serve as tutors, mentors and role models in schools throughout the United States and South Africa.

In addition to helping students and schools succeed, corps members work within local communities to engage community members and provide local service such as painting murals, planning gardens, creating playspaces and refurbishing community centers.

Visit City Year's website for more information.

W Hollywood opens

After eight years of planning and construction, the Hollywood & Vine project opened today with great excitement and promise. The W Hotel and Residences and 1600 Vine now sit atop the Hollywood/Vine Metro Red Line station, offering a four-star hotel for visitors, housing (ranging from affordable to luxury) for residents, new shops and restaurants for both, and hundreds of jobs.

This famed intersection – the former site of a lemon grove -- has played a huge role in making Hollywood synonymous with cutting edge entertainment and setting worldwide pop culture trends. But just a decade ago, it had become a symbol of Hollywood’s blight, crime, and neglect -- a far cry from the glamour of this famous intersection’s heyday.

Now the glamour of Hollywood is back with the opening of this new project, which has transformed this site into one of the world’s most desirable places to live, work, play, and visit.
I hope you'll visit Hollywood and check it out.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Griffith Park Adult Community Center and Club community celebration

On Saturday, March 6, come out to the Griffith Park Adult Community Center & Club (GPACC; 3203 Riverside Dr.) from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to show your support for the club.

Admission and parking are free, so come and enjoy food and drinks, live music, a silent auction, book sale, artwork and crafts, a raffle and a white elephant sale to benefit the GPACC.

2010 Census is hiring

The 2010 Census is now hiring for part-time positions in the Los Angeles area. The work will be conducted in March and April and employees will be paid $17.00 per hour.

The jobs are available in:

  • Boyle Heights
  • Chinatown
  • Echo Park
  • Glassell Park
  • Hancock Park
  • Koreatown
  • Montecito Heights
  • Pico Heights
  • South Central Los Angeles
  • Westlake
You qualify if you:

  • Are a U.S. Citizen
  • Are a legal permanent resident, or non-citizen with an appropriate work visa, and you possess a bilingual skill for which there are no available qualified U.S. Citizens.
  • Are 18 years or older
  • Have a valid Social Security Number
  • Have a valid driver's license
  • Pass a background check
  • Commit to approximately 4 days of training. Employees will be paid for this training at the hourly pay rate. Training will be held either during daytime hours or during evening or weekend hours.
*Males born after December 31, 1959 must be registered with the Selective Service.

For additional information, visit the census website or call 1-866-861-2010.

Job Fair at Dodger Stadium

On March 6, 2010, the California Employment Development Department will hold its 15th Annual Community Job and Information Fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dodger Stadium (1000 Elysian Park Avenue).

For more information, contact Maria Nevarez (323/869-2505) or Griselda Ramos (323/271-3241) at the Employment Development Department.
This event is free of charge and is co-sponsored by Government Agencies in the Los Angeles area.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Congrats, KidTech grads!

This weekend I attended the LA's BEST KidTech culmination ceremony at Harvard Elementary School in East Hollywood. Graduates of this 8-week technology program learned to type, navigate the Internet, and use word processing and other basic applications through fun activities. Students were very excited that at the end of the culmination ceremony they each received a free refurbished computer to take home!

The KidTech program is operated through the city's LA's BEST after-school enrichment program and is funded through a partnership of LA's BEST, former Mayor Richard Riordan, and The Riordan Foundation. Since it launched in Spring 2009, KidTech has served 500 students at 25 Los Angeles schools.

Colin Higgins Foundation 2010 Youth Courage Awards

Each year, the Colin Higgins Foundation recognizes youth activists who have taken a stand against intolerance and hostility exhibited towards members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two-Spirit, Queer and Questioning (LGBTQ) community and is currently accepting nominations for the 2010 awards.

This year the Foundation will be awarding $10,000 grants to LGBTQ youth activists (through age 21) who have bravely stood up to hostility and intolerance based on their sexual orientation and/or gender identity and triumphed over bigotry through working for LGBTQ rights and social justice

The Foundation encourages all nominations to be made via the online submission tool at The deadline for all nominations is 9am EST, Monday, March 1st 2010. Late nominations will not be accepted.

Glassell Park Senior Citizen Center activities

Come check out the various activities available to seniors at the Glassell Park Senior Center (3750 N. Verdugo Rd., Los Angeles, CA 90065)!

Yoga Class
Tuesday Mornings
9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
($5.00 per month)
*please make checks and money orders payable to "City of L.A., Department of Recreation and Parks."

Walking Club
Monday Mornings
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Stay fit and energize with the Walking Club.

Cards and Games Day
Tuesday and Thursday Afternoons
12:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Participate in the excitement of playing cards and games in sociable tournaments.

Affordable housing applications now being accepted for 1600 Vine and Miramar Village

Applications are now being accepted for new housing complexes in Hollywood and Historic Filipinotown.

In Hollywood, a limited number of apartments have been set aside at 1600 Vine St. Apartments (corner of Vine St. and Hollywood Blvd.) for low-income households. From January 22 through February 4 (or until all applications have been distributed), a total of 500 housing applications will be distributed at the following three community centers:
  • Hollywood Worksource Center (1680 Vine St. Suite 206)
  • Frances Howard Goldwyn Los Angeles Public Library (1623 Ivar Ave.)
  • Hollywood Community Studio (6671 Sunset Blvd., Suite 1517)
A housing lottery will take place after the application period closes.

In Historic Filipinotown, the Miramar Village Apartments offers brand new two- and three-bedroom apartments for low-income tenants. Applications, instructions, and more are available on the apartment website.

Glassell Park Neighborhood Council nominations and election

Are you interested in taking a more active role in in the Glassell Park community?

Nominations and elections are coming up for the Glassell Park Neighborhood Council (GPNC) on Thursday, April 29, 2010.

If you live, work or own property within the GPNC boundaries, you are eligible to vote and/or run for a spot on the governing board.

For more information visit the Glassell Park Neighborhood Council website or the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment website (and check under "elections"). You can also call the Department of Neighborhood empowerment at 323-485-1360.

Silver Lake neighborhood walk

Thank you, thank you to all of the volunteers who joined me in walking the Silver Lake neighborhood on Saturday morning. We knocked on doors in the southeastern area (between Sunset Boulevard and the 101 freeway) to see what neighbors had to say about their community and provide information on how to get help from city government.

There is really no better way to learn about what's happening in a neighborhood than to walk its streets. And one of the things I love about walking Los Angeles is that behind every door is an interesting story. Who could have predicted, for example, that hidden behind the door of a single-family home was a neon art installation?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Budget on the Road coming to neighborhoods around Los Angeles

UPDATE: The West LA address on the original flyer was incorrect. The flyer at right has been updated.

The City Council's Budget and Finance Committee, chaired by my colleague Councilmember Bernard Parks, is traveling to neighborhoods around the city to hear directly from constituents about their priorities for the Fiscal Year 2010-11 budget.

Budget on the Road is a four-part series that will begin on Monday, January 25, with a meeting at Van Nuys City Hall. For more information, click on the flyer at right.

Come hear about the city's financial picture and voice your opinion about the services most important to you!

We need results on DNA evidence kits!

UPDATE: The motion passed the Public Safety Committee on Monday morning. Thank you to the advocates who came to the hearing to support the motion.

I've been a strong advocate of eliminating the backlog of LAPD's evidence kits that could hold the answer for solving rape and other violent crimes. At the end of 2008, the police department had close to 7,500 kits in storage waiting to be tested. Now we're down to a little over 1,200.

Reducing the backlog wasn't easy -- it's been tough times for the city's budget. But the Mayor and City Council made this a priority and set aside funds in our budget to hire more DNA analysts and contract with private labs address the backlog more quickly. I was extremely disappointed to learn that even though funding was specifically earmarked, a hiring-related committee of city staffers denied the LAPD's request to hire these positions.

Now we are two months behind schedule in hiring, and the funding could get diverted for other uses if we don't spend it soon!

I've proposed a plan to take a portion of the hiring funds and use them to extend our contracts with private labs. They've already completed the work we paid them to do this year, and they can continue to plug away if we keep them on board. My plan also calls for the immediate hiring of the maximum number of DNA analysts that LAPD can train at one time.

On Monday, my motion goes before the Public Safety Committee at 9:30 a.m. (Room 1010 at City Hall) and the Budget and Finance Committee at 6:00 p.m. (Van Nuys City Hall). If you agree with me that victims of rape and other violent crimes shouldn't have to wait longer for their evidence kits to be tested, I hope you'll come speak up at one of these meetings.

All My Children settles into Andrita Studios

Yesterday I taped a cameo appearance on ABC-TV's long-running show All My Children, which moved its production from New York to Los Angeles (Glassell Park in my Council District to be specific!) at the end of last year.

I am so excited about the show's new home at Andrita Studios because of the 150 local jobs it created for Angelenos and because it's already boosting business for local caterers, storage facility providers, and more.

If you want to watch, you can tune in on February 16... I'll be the one playing "Councilmember Garcetti."

Second chance to get a free fruit tree in Echo Park!

If you missed your chance to recieve a free fruit tree last weekend, then head over to the Echo Park Farmers Market (Parking Lot #663 on Logan Street, south of Sunset Boulevard) today January 22, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Trees that will be given away include apple, apricot, grapefruit, lemon, nectarine, orange, peach, plum, and tangerine trees.

This event is sponsored by TreePeople and members of their staff will be available to provide information on the proper tree planting and care.

For more information, please call (323) 463-3171.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Los Angeles Department of Transportation Public Hearings

The Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) will hold six public hearings to allow the public to voice its opinion on the proposed reductions to LADOT Transit services and increases in fares.

The public hearings will be held at the following six locations and times:

West Los Angeles
Tuesday, February 16, 2010, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Henry Medina West L.A Parking Enforcement Facility, Second Floor, Roll Call Room
11214 W. Exposition Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

South Los Angeles
Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
South Los Angeles Activity Center, Multipurpose Room
7020 South Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90003

Central Los Angeles
Tuesday, February 23, 2010, 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Caltrans Bldg., Community Center Conference Room
100 South Main St., Los Angeles, CA 90012

North and South Valley
Wednesday, February 24, 2010, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Marvin Braude Constituent Service Center, Room 1B
6262 Van Nuys Blvd., Van Nuys, CA 91401

Thursday February 25, 2010, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Cabrillo-Marina Community Center, Community Room
224 Whalers Walk, San Pedro, CA 90731

Wednesday, March 3, 2010, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Ramona Hall Community Center, Community Room
4580 North Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90065

Written and oral comments will be taken at the public hearings for consideration. If you are unable to attend one of the six hearings listed above, you can still submit testimony, comments or suggestions until March 3, 2010 in any of the following ways:

Telephone Message: 213-455-0880
Mail: Philip Aker, Hearing Officer, LADOT, 201 North Los Angeles St., #18B, Los Angeles, CA 90012

The State of Hollywood in 2010

This afternoon I'm giving my 9th State of Hollywood speech at a luncheon organized by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. This is one of my favorite annual events because it gives our Hollywood community an opportunity to pause and reflect on what we've been able to accomplish together, and what we still can and need to do.

Despite the economic recession, Hollywood chugging along in 2009. We saw the opening of more than 30 new shops and restaurants. We celebrated the arrival of hundreds of new housing opportunities. And we continued to prepare for the opening of major projects that are about to come online, such as the W Hotel and Residences and the long-anticipated repairs to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I'll be talking about these things and more.

I hope to see you there!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Get free help with your taxes

NOTE: This event has been moved to 1157 Lemoyne Avenue and the reception will begin at 11 a.m.

The 2010 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program for Los Angeles will officially launch on Thursday, January 28, at the brand new Echo Park FamilySource Center (located at El Centro Del Pueblo, 1824 Sunset Blvd.). There will be a program and reception from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and tours and services provided between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m.

The City's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site in Echo Park is one of many available throughout Los Angeles to provide local residents with free help preparing their income taxes. In particular, the city wants to ensure that those who qualify take advantage of the Earned Income Tax Credit. PricewaterhouseCoopers has adopted the Echo Park site and is providing volunteer tax preparers.

The Echo Park FamilySource Center is a collaboration of community-based organizations and is a one-stop shop for counseling, case management, parenting classes, educational and employment resources, youth mentoring, computer literacy classes, and much more.

To RSVP for Thursday's event, please contact Maribel Cornejo at 213-483-6335, ext 111 or For more information, please contact Carlos Martinez, FamilySource Center Director, at 213-483-6335, ext 110 or

Friday, January 15, 2010

Youth Mentoring Connection mentor recruitment

In September 2008, the Division of Adolescent Medicine at The Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) was awarded funding from the City of Los Angeles to establish a gang reduction and youth development program in the Northeast community that includes Cypress Park, Glassell Park, and Highland Park. In the past year, CHLA has established a successful mentor program in partnership with Youth Mentoring Connection (YMC).

If you are interested in joining this effort and becoming a mentor for young people ages 10-15, come to an informational session on Wednesday, January 20, at the Glassell Park Community and Senior Center (3750 Verdugo Road) from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. YMC will describe their program and their expectations for mentors.

Mentors must be 18 years old, commit 5 hours per month and are asked to make a 9-month commitment. Mentors will also get training and ongoing support from YMC. If you are unable to make a commitment at this time, but you know someone who can, invite them to participate in this informational session or distributing the flyer to any civic or faith organizations.

Glassel Park fruit tree giveaway

Tomorrow, January 16, a variety of free fruit trees including citrus trees, will be distributed at the Recreation Center parking lot area of Glassell Park (3650 Verdugo Road) starting at noon.

Fruit trees are provided by TreePeople and will be handed out on a first come, first served basis. Bring a bag or bucket to also receive mulch provided by the Bureau of Sanitation from the City of Los Angeles.

This event is sponsored by the Glassell Park Improvement Association (GPIA). To volunteer to pick up the trees at a TreePeople distribution center, please arrive at the Recreation Center at 7 a.m. To volunteer for set up, arrive at the Recreation Center shortly after 7 a.m.

Contact Alonso Calderon at or GPIA president Jim Kiehl at for more information.

Los Angeles Housing Department Awarded $100 Million in Recovery Act finding

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced that the Los Angeles Housing Department was awarded $100 million in Recovery Act funding.

The second round of neighborhood revitalization grants is being competitively awarded to applicants who show the most innovative ideas to rebuild local communities. Grant recipients must also demonstrate that they can responsibly handle taxpayer dollars.

Funds from HUD's Neighborhood Stabilization Program will rehabilitate foreclosed or abandoned homes in Los Angeles while making them affordable for working class families.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Help for Haiti

Tonight I'm headed over to TiGeorge's Restaurant where owner George Laguerre, who hails from Port-de-Paix, is holding a fundraiser to help victims of the massive earthquake that struck this week. Laguerre is focused on helping to send doctors and get medical equipment for the doctors to take with them to Haiti.

Angelenos know better than many about the need for people to support each other during natural disasters such as major earthquakes, and I know we are all extending our thoughts and prayers to the people of Haiti.

Those who would like to do more may contact one of the organizations below:

Phone: Donation Hotlines: (800) REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767) or (800) 257-7575 (EspaƱol) Website:

Phone: (800) 4UNICEF (800) 486-4233;

Phone: (310) 838-3455

This site states that you can donate $10 to be charged to your cell phone bill by texting "HAITI" to "90999." Proceeds will be directed to the American Red Cross.

Phone: (888) 511-6548

City Employee Spotlight: Ron Lorenzen

As the City of Los Angeles's Assistant Chief Forester, Ron Lorenzen helps keep our neighborhoods looking beautiful by working with the City Council, Department of Public Works, and neighborhood organizations to develop and oversee implementation of strategic plans to expand, maintain and protect the forest of trees throughout our city's communities. He is always quick to respond to the needs of CD13 constituents when it comes to tree trimming or other tree-related issues.

Ron has been working in the tree care profession for nearly 40 years. He owned a tree care company until he joined the City of Los Angeles as a Tree Surgeon in 1992. He has worked his way through the Urban Forestry Division ranks and became the Assistant Chief Forester in 2006.

Ron earned a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Environmental Studies from California State University Dominguez Hills, and is a Certified Arborist by the International Society of Arboriculture and a Certified Urban Forester by the California Urban Forest Council.

Ron lives in the Antelope Valley with his wife. He is the proud father of three girls and grandfather of five. He enjoys surfing, skiing, snowboarding, reading, and is an active member of the First Baptist Church Woodland Hills.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Echo Park fruit tree giveaway

On January 16, 2010, free fruit trees --including apple, peach, plum, apricot, nectarine and orange trees -- will be distributed at Delilah Bakery (1665 Echo Park Avenue) in Echo Park from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Trees can be reserved in advance, and need to be picked up by 4:30 p.m. Unreserved trees will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.

This event is coordinated by the Echo Park Improvement Association (EPIA), which is limiting the giveaway to Echo Park residents only.

Echo Park residents may reserve a tree by emailing or by calling the EPIA Hotline at 323-882-4835. Please include your name, phone number and type of tree you would like.

Computer access and WiFi expansion coming to Los Angeles

The City of Los Angeles has won $7 million in federal economic recovery funds to expand computer and Internet access for Los Angeles families. The funds will allow us to install more than 2,600 public computer workstations, provide broadband connection at 72 computer center sites, expand WiFi networks at places such as parks and community centers, deploy portable wireless training stations, and upgrade networks used to connect thousands of computers to the Internet.

In these tough times, this project is particularly important for job seekers who are using computers at libraries and job source centers to look for job opportunities or prepare resumes. On a recent Sunday, I happened to pass by the Central Library in Downtown L.A. and saw a line of people waiting to use the computers there. This grant funding will allow us to significantly expand computer and Internet access, and hopefully that will help many job seekers find work.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Children's Institute building and community center under construction

The Children's Institute's new office building and community center is now under construction in Historic Filipinotown.

When it's completed, the new facility will help the non-profit organization better serve vulnerable and at-risk children with clinical services, early childhood education, enrichment activities and family support.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Run to support the Audubon Center at Debs Park

Just minutes away from Downtown LA, the Audubon Center at Debs Park provides a green oasis where urban dwellers of all ages can enjoy and learn more about nature. On February 27, runners can support the park and challenge themselves with a 4-mile benefit run.

In addition to the 4-mile course, there will also be kiddie runs for younger runners. Free childcare is also available for race participants.

The run is organized by Aztlan Athletics. Click here to go to their website for more information, maps and online registration.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Business Tax Advisory Committee reconvenes

Yesterday the Business Tax Advisory Committee had its first meeting to begin the process of reviewing and recommending business tax reforms that will help Los Angeles attract and retain jobs and businesses.

LA's unemployment rate is four points higher than the national average and our efforts must focus on getting people back to work and fighting for every job in this city. The Business Tax Advisory Committee has been assembled to develop ideas that will jump start our local economy and create jobs.

The first BTAC was created in 1999 and proposed several tax exemptions and administrative changes that helped Los Angeles become more business-friendly, including the Garcetti-Greuel reforms that now save businesses more than $90 million annually. The Business Tax Advisory Committee was reinstated with nine members who will meet during the next 18 months.

The Business Tax Advisory Committee appointees are:
  • Lloyd Greif (BTAC Chair), Entrepreneur/Finance Expert (Garcetti)

  • Michael Banner, Small Business Owner (Parks)

  • Kathy Faulk, Checkers Hotel Hilton (Hahn)

  • Dwayne Gathers, Business Development Consultant (Perry)

  • Saul Gomez, State and Local Tax Services, Ernst & Young (Mayor)

  • Mel Kohn, CPA and Former BTAC Chair (Alarcon)

  • Craig Morris, Tax Expert, KPMG (Garcetti)

  • Melissa Patack, Vice President State & Government Affairs, Motion Picture Association of America (Mayor)

  • Mel Wilson, Real Estate Broker, former NFL Player (Wesson)

City Employee Spotlight: Julio Pombal

Julio Pombal is an inspector with the City of Los Angeles's Urban Forestry department who has helped to ensure that trees in Council District 13 are trimmed promptly to beautify neighborhoods, enhance public safety and prevent interference with utility lines. He cares very deeply about the communities he serves and on many occasions has gone above and beyond the call of duty to take care of CD13 neighborhoods, including Hollywood, Silver Lake, and Atwater Village.

Born and raised in Guatemala City, Julio moved to the United States almost 20 years ago to achieve the American Dream. He graduated from the Institute Adolfo V. Hall Juatiapa as a Reserve Army Lieutenant specializing in agriculture and continued his education at the University of Rafael Landivar where he majored in Agriculture Engineering. He began working for the City of Los Angeles in 1996 as a Tree Surgeon Assistant and has worked his way up the ranks.

Julio's commitment to Council District 13 communities has been invaluable, and we all thank him for his help with making our neighborhoods great.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

East Hollywood Neighborhood Council seeks candidates

The East Hollywood Neighborhood Council is seeking candidates to run in its March 20 Neighborhood Council election. The deadline to file as a candidate is January 19.

To be eligible, a candidate must be at least 16 years-old and an East Hollywood stakeholders such as those who live, work, own property, attend school, is a member of a faith organization, are a board or staff member of a non-profit organization or have a vested interest in East Hollywood. Neighborhood Council board members are expected to attend monthly meetings and perform other community work and outreach in the neighborhood.

Candidate packets may be found by clicking here. For more information about the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council board, please contact Cassandra Pruett, EHNC Outreach Committee Co-Chair, at 323/665-8777. For information about the candidate packets or election process, please contact the Los Angeles City Clerk's Office Neighborhood Council Election Division at 213/978-0444.

Forum and resource fair for women in non-traditional careers

The City of Los Angeles's Human Services Department will host a forum and resource fair for women interested in job training opportunities in non-traditional careers. The event will be held Wednesday, January 13, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Immanuel Presbyterian Church (3300 Wilshire Blvd.). It is free and open to the public.

The forum will include representatives from SEIU-United Long Term Care Workers, Women in Non-Traditional Employment Roles (W.I.N.T.E.R.), UCLA-LOSH Green Jobs, and the National Association of Women Business Owners.

For more information, please contact the City of Los Angeles Human Services Department at 213/978-1840.

Opportunity to support Neighborhood Nursery School in Silver Lake

The Neighborhood Nursery School, a non-profit cooperative pre-school in Silver Lake, will hold its annual Art Show on Saturday, January 23, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. The show will feature works from more than 100 local artists and will be held in the Rec Center Studio in the historic Jensen's Recreation Center (1661 Logan Street at Sunset Boulevard).

Tickets are $20 and includes wine, beer, appetizers, and entertainment by DJ Mike Messex. For more information, visit the Neighborhood Nursery School website.

Another year of record crime lows in Los Angeles

This morning I joined Mayor Villaraigosa, LAPD Chief Beck, Councilmember Zine, and Police Commission President John Mack to announce that crime in Los Angeles was down again in 2009.

Violent and property crimes went down by 8.6 percent in 2009 compared with 2008. Gang-related crimes are down by more than 11 percent this year compared with last year.

What we've accomplished is truly historic, and I want to thank the men and women of the Los Angeles Police Department and the many community members with whom they have partnered to make Los Angeles the much safer city that it has become.

Even though we are facing tough budget times, I'm committed to protecting public safety because safe neighborhoods are important to our economy and our quality of life.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Help us count!

The U.S. Census is coming and it's important that we all get counted -- the results are used for a variety of purposes, including determining how much funding Los Angeles gets for key programs.

Census workers are partnering with community organizations to make sure that everyone is counted in Los Angeles. In January, special workshops will be held to train communities leaders on how they can help ensure the Latino community gets counted fully and accurately. Train the trainer workshops will teach participants how to create their own local census campaign and provide resources for organizations to spearhead successful census participation efforts.

The first workshop in Los Angeles will be held on Friday, January 8, from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the East Los Angeles Public Library's community room (4837 E Third Street). For more information or to register, please visit http://hagasecontar.yaeshora.ino/eventos/ or call 877-EL-CENSO.

Tree Care Event on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan 18

Celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Tree Care Event presented by Tree People, Hope IBF Church, and the East Hollywood Neighborhood Council on January 18, 2010. Help care for 20 young trees in the neighborhood.

Everyone is welcome to come help ensure we have a healthy and abundant forest in East Hollywood. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Edgemont St. & Fountain Ave.

Please RSVP by emailing or calling (818)623-4879.