Friday, April 30, 2010

National Pet Week

The Board of Animal Services Commissioners unanimously declared the week of May 2-8, 2010 as "National Pet Week - Pets and People - Healthy Together" to promote the importance of physical activity and wellness for pets and their owners.

Just as obesity is a continuing problem for adult Americans, 44 percent of dogs and 55 percent of cats are classified as overweight or obese and the same health problems associated with obesity in humans also affect our pets.

To combat this problem, public health professionals and veterinarians are endorsing a proactive approach that includes a healthy diet and exercise as well as regular wellness exams and vaccinations.

If you are interested in adopting a pet, Los Angeles Animal Services is sponsoring a Mother's Day discount adoption event from May 3-9, 2010. Please visit their website for more information.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Budget 101

The City of Los Angeles's budget impacts everyone who lives or works in L.A., and the process for developing the budget for the next fiscal year (which begins in July) is now underway.

To help people understand what the budget means to them and how to get involved in shaping the tough decisions that will be made to balance it, I have been hosting community roundtable discussions. I met with community leaders last night in Hollywood and this morning in Glassell Park to explain how the process works and hear their suggestions and concerns.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Echo Park Playgroup Maintenance Day

On Saturday, May 1, visit Echo Park Playgroup for some spring cleaning on Maintenance Day. Volunteers will be painting, fixing, mending and cleaning, all while finding their groove to some fun and funky music. Snacks and beverages will be provided.

For more information, visit their website or call 323-660-9665.

Glassell Park Recreation Center Walking Path and Exercise Equipment Dedication

This morning, I joined Glassell Park community members in celebrating the opening and dedication of the new walking path and exercise equipment at the Glassell Park Recreation Center.

The walking path was constructed with decomposed granite path. New exercise equipment has also been installed around the park.

This project was funded using QUIMBY funds, a fee that developers pay to help build or enhance parks and recreational facilities in the neighborhoods where they build. In addition to the new walking path and exercise equipment, these funds also recently paid for a new air conditioning system for the Glassell Park Recreation Center.

Armenian Genocide remembrance

On Friday, we took a moment in Council to recognize and remember one of the most horrific events in world history -- the Armenian Genocide.

Beginning in 1915, the genocide was carried out by Ottoman Turkey and resulted in the death of more than 1.5 million men, women, and children. The remaining survivors were expelled from their historic homeland.

In Council Chambers, we honored Dr. J. Michael Hagopian, a survivor of the Armenian Genocide who has dedicated his life to documenting the stories of survivors on film. Dr. Hagopian, 96, is pictured above at the podium.

Maya Angelou once wrote, "History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived but if faced with courage, need not be lived again." We recognize the wrenching pain of this moment in our history and strive to never let it be lived again.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Volunteers needed for Echo Park Clean-Up

On Saturday, May 1, my office will partner with Kaiser Permanente and Big Sunday to hold a community clean-up in Echo Park from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Those interested in volunteering should meet at the Walgreen’s parking lot (1625 W. Sunset) at 8:45 a.m. Lunch will be provided. For more information, please contact Echo Park Field Deputy Alejandra Marroquin at 323-957-4500.

There will also be opportunities to volunteer on projects throughout Los Angeles as part of Big Sunday weekend. Click here for more information.

Free tire recycling

The Bureau of Sanitation will offer six free tire collection events citywide in the upcoming weeks.

Collection is only available to residents of the City of Los Angeles, and a valid driver’s license and DWP bill are required as proof of residency. There is a limit of four tires per resident, and the service is not available for businesses.

Click on the flyer to the right for the dates and locations of the collections.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Peace Over Violence's Denim Day LA

Today I was proud to host the city's annual recognition of Denim Day in Council Chambers.

Every year since 1999, Peace Over Violence has organized this day as a rape prevention and education campaign designed to raise awareness of various misconceptions that surround sexual assault.

The idea to encourage individuals to wear denim in protest of sexual assault arose from an incident that occurred in Italy in 1992. An 18 year-old girl was raped by her 45 year-old driving instructor who was convicted, but later had his sentence overturned. Following the appeal, the Chief Judge opined that because the girl's jeans were so tight, she must have assisted the perpetrator in removing them and, therefore, was not raped. When female members of the Italian Parliament heard this, they protested by wearing jeans to work. Today, we did the same in the City Council.

Join us in donning your favorite pair of jeans to support this cause!

Youth Policy Institute Youth Fundraiser

Come out and support the Youth Policy Institute's (YPI) Hollywood Family Source Center by attending the Youth Fundraiser at Shakey's Pizza (7001 Santa Monica Blvd.) on Friday, April 30, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Donations to YPI's Youth League are also encouraged. YPI will accept board games, computer software (educational or entertainment), books, furniture, various video game components, DVDs, art supplies, and monetary donations.

For more information, please call the YPI Hollywood Family Source Center at (323) 836-0055.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

CD 13 iPhone App Kick Off

Thank you to the volunteers who joined me for Download Day on Saturday. We downloaded the new "Garcetti 311" iPhone app and then hit the streets of Historic Filipinotown to report graffiti, bulky items, overgrown plants, abandoned shopping carts and more.

The application is free via iTunes, and will soon be available for other mobile platforms such as Google Android, Blackberry, Palm, and Windows Mobile. To download through iTunes, click here.

Audubon Center at Debs Park Summer Day Camp

The Audubon Center at Debs Park will once again offer summer day camp for kids who are 6 to 11 years-old.

The camp provides structured, hands-on activities focused on nature studies and the cultural history of the area -- plus a lot of fun.

Late/early pick-up and financial aid are available. To find out more or to register, go to

Los Angeles Neighborhood Initiative 8th Annual Community Forum

The Los Angeles Neighborhood Initiative will host its 8th Annual Community Forum on Thursday, May 13, from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the USC Davidson Conference Center.

This year’s forum will feature a welcome address by Los Angeles Metro CEO Art Leahy and keynote speaker Father Greg Boyle of Homeboy.

Admission is free, but registration is strongly suggested. To register click here.

Bootleg Theater and l'Enfant Terrible Presents Hamlet, Prince of Puddles

The Bootleg Theater and l’Enfant Terrible is presenting Hamlet, Prince of Puddles, an all ages adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic play. Performances begin at 11 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays through May 9.

Tickets are $9.99 for adults and $5 for children, and are available at and or by calling 213-389-3856 for reservations.

Fountain Community Gardens Fundraiser

In May 2009, the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Community Garden Council, and the Los Angeles Conservation Corps worked with community members to create the Fountain Community Gardens (5620 Fountain Ave) in Hollywood.

The garden currently supports 65 plots and is tended by more than 100 gardeners from different ethnic backgrounds, age groups, and economic classes. In addition, several local community organizations such as Project Angel Food, Thai Community Development Corporation, Thai Health Center, Leaders de la Comunidad en Accion, and the LACER after-school program maintain plots. The garden also contains sections that support California native plants, two communal herb gardens, a citrus grove, and more.

To celebrate our one-year anniversary, FCG is hosting a fundraising event at the garden on Sunday, May 2, from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The event will include live music, food, and a raffle. Funds raised will help pay for operating expenses such as water, garden tools, and repairs and improvements to the plant beds.

For more information, please visit the Fountain Community Gardens website.

Friday, April 16, 2010

GET-LA winners announced

On February 3, I helped launch Get L.A., a short film competition sponsored by Los Angeles Magazine and L.A. Works. Today, the eight finalists joined me and the competition's sponsors at City Hall where we announced the winners.

Nearly 100 films were submitted. The eight finalists' films were touching, funny, witty, and captured the essence of what it means to be an Angeleno.

Please join me in congratulating Jury Award winner Alyssa Price for her film "Pearl" and Audience Award winners James Song, Zachary Midgal, and Lucas Burns for their film

You can view the films by clicking here.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sweet treats for a good cause

On Saturday, bake sales across the country will raise funds to benefit Share Our Strength, which works to end childhood hunger. Los Angeles's event will be held at Morel's French Steakhouse and Bistro at The Grove (189 The Grove Drive) from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Click here for a list of participants. Those who can't attend, but want to support the cause can click here.

Neighborhood Nursery School's Annual Spring Fair and Silent Auction

The Neighborhood Nursery School in Silver Lake will be holding its 2010 Spring Fair and silent auction Saturday, May 22 from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at 2700 Tesla Ave. (at Armstrong Ave.).

The event will feature delicious homemade food, games, crafts, and music by Egg, Nerd Army, Bonne Musique Zydeco and Tru Fight. Tickets are $12 at the door and $10 online and include food. Children under 10 are free.

For more information about the event and the Neighborhood Nursery School, click here.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Free medical, dental and vision care

From April 27 through May 3, Remote Area Medical (RAM) will provide free medical, dental and vision care to anyone who needs it with no cost, no income test, insurance requirement or restriction of any kind at the Los Angeles Sports Arena (3939 N. Figueroa St., near USC) from 6:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.

This event will feature at least 100 dental stations, 45 medical exam rooms, and 25 eye exam stations.

Dental services will include cleanings, extractions, fillings, restorative procedures and root canals. Eye exams will include eye glasses that will be ground and fitted on-site. Mammography, pap smears, chest x-rays, and diabetes screening, blood pressure screening, and other services will also be provided.

Follow-up care will be arranged for those who need it, with most referrals to private sector practices and facilities.

For more information on services or volunteer opportunities, please visit RAM-LA's website.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Affordable Housing in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley

L.A. Family Housing has re-opened its waiting list to new applicants looking for affordable housing in the Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley areas.

Applications can be picked up from between April 15 and April 30, Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at 7843 Lankerskim Blvd. in North Hollywood. The applications are also available online at

Applications must be submitted by 4:00 p.m. on April 30, 2010, and priority is given based on the date received.

Volunteers needed for Hollywood Homeless Registry Week

The Hollywood 4WRD (4 Walls, a Roof and a Door) coalition, in partnership with Common Ground, is looking for volunteers to participate in Hollywood Homeless Registry Week, which is April 25 through 30.

The goal is to create a by-name database of homeless individuals living on the streets of Hollywood who are most at-risk of premature death. This prioritization will help the Hollywood community better allocate housing and supportive services to those who need it most.

Volunteers will be partnered with experienced outreach workers. However, a brief training is required to participate. The training session will be held on April 25 from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Hollywood Fountain South (6501 Fountain Ave.). Volunteers are strongly encouraged to serve all three days, but may specify availability on the online registration form.

Click here to register. Click here for more information or contact Sarah MacPherson of the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance at

Friday, April 09, 2010

Organic vegetable, herb and ornamental seedling giveaway

On Saturday, April 10, there will be an organic vegetable, herb and ornamental seedling giveaway on the South Lawn of Los Angeles City Hall (200 Main St.) starting at 9:00 a.m. for school gardeners and 10 a.m. for community gardeners.

Approximately 100,000 seedlings will be distributed at this event hosted by L.A. School Board Member Marguerite La Motte and my colleague Councilmember Jan Perry.

Free parking is available in the City Hall East garage (entrance on Los Angeles Street between Temple and First Streets).

For more information, contact Mud Baron at

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Volunteers needed for Silver Lake Musicians Co-Op concerts

On St. Patrick's Day, the Silver Lake Musician's Co-Op and their Pay It Forward Band began the ambitious task of performing music from the 1930s to the 1960s at all 97 of Los Angeles County's nursing/convalescent homes. The band chose the music from 1930 to 1960 to "rekindle memories of better days."

The Silver Lake Musician's Co-Op is looking for fellow musicians who are willing to volunteer their time and talents to entertain local seniors. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Gary Gamponia, Director of the Co-Op at or visit the Silver Lake Musician's Co-Op's website.

SLIA/LAPD community meeting

On Thursday, April 15, the Silver Lake Improvement Association (SLIA) and the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) are hosting a community meeting at the Holy Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Church (650 Micheltorena St.). The meeting will be an opportunity for residents to raise concerns and offer suggestions for keeping their community safe. It will begin at 6:00 p.m. and light refreshments will be served.

Echo Park Library Book Sale

The Echo Park Library Community Group (EPLCG) is hosting a book sale benefiting the Echo Park Library on Saturday, April 10, from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Echo Park Library (1410 W. Temple Street).

This is a great opportunity for people of all ages to purchase books for summer reading. Prices range from $0.25 to $5.00, and there will be complimentary coffee and donuts.

Eco-Village and Bresee Earth Day celebration

On Sunday, April 25, celebrate Earth Day with Eco Maya from 12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with the Los Angeles Eco-Village and Bresee Foundation (117 Bimini Place). The day will feature folkloric dances, music, art, and Oaxacan and Mayan regional food.

For more information, please call 323-377-0973 or 323-960-7879.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Garcetti 311 iPhone app coming soon!

Today I announced “Garcetti 311,” a new application for iPhones that will allow users to snap and submit photos of potholes, graffiti, and other problems in my council district for the city to address.
The new app empowers Angelenos to improve our neighborhoods by providing a quick, easy way of letting city government know where there are problems that need to be fixed. I’m proud to launch the pilot program in my district.

The application was developed by CitySourced, which held a training for my staff earlier today so that they could learn how to handle requests submitted through the new application.

Through the “Garcetti 311” application, users will be able to report problems for the city to address, including:

· Abandoned bicycles and vehicles

· Deceased animals

· Bulky items

· Graffiti

· Illegal dumping

· Broken sidewalks

· Potholes

· Overgrown trees

The application uses geo-tagging technology to automatically provide the problem’s location, simplifying the reporting process for users. During the year-long pilot program, my staff members will submit the requests to the appropriate city departments for action.

The application will be made available free of charge via iTunes later this month. Within the next three months, CitySourced, powered by, also expects to expand availability of the technology to other mobile platforms such as Google Android, Blackberry, Palm, and Windows Mobile.

Free Bio/Manufacturing Tech Training Programs

The Wilshire Metro WorkSource Center is introducing its first Bio/Manufacturing Tech Training Program. Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, this program will assist individuals with training in the High Growth Manufacturing Industry with an emphasis in Biotechnology and job placement at Baxter Healthcare. The trainings will begin on April 8 at LA Valley College in Van Nuys from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Other trainings will be held April 9, 14, 16, and 20 at the Wilshrie Metro WorkSource Center (3550 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 500) from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. To register, call 213-805-4222. Resumes can be sent to Click on the flyer to the right for more information

Free Tax Preparation

If you haven't filled out your income taxes yet, the California State Controller's Office is offering free tax preparation for anyone with an annual income of less than $49,000. To schedule an appointment, call 213-833-6010 or click here to find a tax preparedness event in your community. The deadline to file taxes is April 15.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Songkran 2010

Don't miss one of our best Thai Town traditions with the 9am-8pm celebration of Songkran, Thai New Year. There will be performances on 4 stages all day long on Hollywood Blvd. in Thai Town between Western and Vermont. There will be great food, music, dancing, and more! This year coincides with Easter Sunday, so if you are celebrating Easter, come by after services today! For more information, visit the event web site. สวัสดีปีใหม่ / sa-wat-dee pee mai (Happy New Year)!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Thinking Green with Political and Buisness Leaders

The Los Angeles Business Council's 4th-Annual Sustainability Summit will take place April 6 from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Harold M. Williams Auditorium in the Getty Center. The summit will focus on how L.A. will grapple with rising energy costs while investing in renewable energy that will lead to new businesses and promote job creation.

The event will feature, California Attorney General Jerry Brown, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and numerous environmental experts from both the private and public sector. The deadline to register is April 2. Click here to register.