Mon, Jun

Nobody In Their Right Mind


ERIC PREVEN’S NOTEBOOK - The mega-producers or top creatives including J.J. Abrams, Greg Berlanti, Chuck Lorre, Bill Lawrence, John Wells and Mindy Kaling have had their lucrative development deals suspended.  

It’s important to note that suspended does not mean outright canceled/dropped as once the labor action concludes, Warners will need its top producers to ramp up writing and producing immediately as the content pipeline continues to thin.

As the demand for content increases, city hall media watchers have noticed a step up in production at city hall under Bob Blumenfield’s innovative leadership. While gently glancing away from the Workday payroll system debacle, the council will approve on Friday a heavily scrutinized agreement with the Los Angeles Cable Television Access Corporation for the operation of channel 36, a Citywide Mixed-Use Public, Educational community access TV channel.

A first amended and restated professional services agreement No. C-136998 will be debated openly on Friday. 

Representing the aye vote, will be Bob Blumenfield et al. 

Representing the NO, sorry, there will be no dissent as the matter has been placed in the “Items for which Public Hearings Have Been Held” section, along with the Workday fiasco.

Los Angeles Cable Television Access Corporation (LACTAC)

10370 Slusher Dr. #9, Santa Fe Springs, CA  90670

Proposed amount $ 1,010,000+ Prior award(s) $ 1,515,000 = Total $ 2,525,000  

Term July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2025

Smart Speaker: Where are we with the Workday debacle?

City Attorney:  That’s not open for public comment. 

Smart Speaker:  I think I should be given a show on channel 36.  I have experience. 

City Attorney:  You're off-topic. 

Smart Speaker (reading): Yes, thank you, it says re: Workday... “The Human Resources and Payroll HRP team have reviewed lessons learned …Phase 2 is now in End-to-End Testing with a target date for GoLive set for December 2023. 

Overall, Phase 2 is in a state of “Managed Risks'' as described by the project's Quality Assurance (QA) team from Gartner. 

Specifically, “the HRP Project execution or planned trajectory does not meet best practice standards or is not clearly defined, and/or presents a potential material impact to the HRP Project which will become real or get worse if not addressed proactively.” 

Driving this current status are the categories Schedule and Resources which are identified as being at a Critical Risk level. 

City Attorney: Your time has expired.

Local Yokels: 

Policymakers around the world are increasingly backing the hyperlocal approach. 

In Great Britain, the government oversees public-private partnerships that collectively knit millions of people together with programs like nature walks, songwriting workshops, and community litter pickups.

There was a charming piece in the New York Times about Parisians gathering in their neighborhoods to exchange pleasantries and various cheese-based recommendations. 

The immediate neighborhood in which one lives, proponents argue, is the most effective platform by which people can create resilience to and potentially mitigate the growing number of crises that urban populations face, including loneliness, food insecurity, extreme heat, and social unrest linked to inequality. 

 — yes, this includes unwanted invasions by the Trustees of Harvard Westlake School and their preposterous belief in and appetite for entitlement(s). 

Zone changes are hyperlocal, too. 

That said, local news has suffered tremendously. 

The local news industry once pulled in $50 billion in annual revenue. Now that figure is about $10 billion. 

Ideas for recovering the missing $40 billion have ranged from increased philanthropy to tax breaks to charging platforms like Google and Facebook for content, but the financial conundrum has been the one thing no one has been able to figure out. 

Until now:  Trained and paid roles — Friends of the Neighborhood.  Friends of Krekorian. 

Paul Krekorian promotes his version of the history of City Hall on Channel 35. Different than 36. 

Buffet, get in here!

Warren Buffet reached millionaire status, a lifelong dream, by age 30. At 56, his net worth passed $1 billion. I wonder if Warren Buffet, who is famous for saying folksy smart things and plans to turn over all his money to Bill Gates of all people to distribute once he tees off at Weddington for the final round, turned to that little devil Charlie Munger, his long time colleague to say “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”  

Munger might’ve replied angrily, “I’m older than you, son, and I run a lumber yard, so don’t take me around the block and step aside as I’m getting ready to fire up this chainsaw right now as this lumber market is heating up.”

Buffet would put a hand on Munger’s bony little shoulder and say, “Charlie, you were wrong on the estimated earnings of Alibaba and you’re wrong on Weddington (and Hyatt NYSE: H )”

“I know you like avoiding mistakes, so I want you to call Tony Pritzker and tell him you want to do the good and neighborly thing, and change tack on the sports complex and make a deal to do it in the Sepulveda Basin, where they apparently want more Olympics.” 

“Avoid Repeating Mistakes” 

A longtime police officer settled her case against LAPD and the City for $1,300,000 on Wednesday.  

Nobody said a word.

Two front desk officers at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Van Nuys division had sued the city, alleging disability discrimination and retaliation, and their court papers specifically criticized a captain who had also accused the department of intentionally skewing crime rates by misclassifying violent crimes. That was Captain Lillian Carranza who was Awarded $4 Million after fake nude photo was shared among officers. 

The two plaintiffs in the Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuits were Officers Adam Hollands and Blanca Avila.

Hollands and Avila claimed in their lawsuits that they worked the front desk during the day at Van Nuys, one of the LAPD’s busiest stations. Their jobs include assisting people who come to the station in person, managing telephone calls and writing related reports, the suit states.  

Avila and Hollands were assigned to light duty after suffering back injuries the suits state. Both often complained to supervisors that there were not enough resources at the front desk to assist them in meeting the community’s needs, according to the complaints. 

They claimed, “registered sex offenders” reported to the same lobby where residents and their children waited to have their concerns heard. Such complaints fell on the deaf ears of (the) chain of command.” 

In December 2014, the officers asked for an automated interface system that would screen and route calls to the appropriate personnel so they could give their attention to walk-in visitors who often waited hours for assistance, the suits state. 

Avila tried to meet with Carranza in January 2016 to ask why her police powers had been taken away, but the captain “refused to keep her scheduled meeting with plaintiff'” and told her to talk to another captain, Avila’s suit states.  

Avila filed a complaint against Beck, Carranza, and the other captain in February 2016, but 10 months later the department deemed her allegations to be “unfounded,” Avila’s suit states.  

Avila was suspended for 10 days for allegedly not complying with department regulations and transferred to the North Hollywood station, her lawsuit states. 

Avila believes Carranza’s secretary wrote an email to a North Hollywood station secretary “stating that a problem child was coming there.” 

Back Roomies: 

According to a lawsuit filed recently, “Through the application process for 464 Crane, the project’s advocates did not follow the city of Los Angeles rules for building on steep hillsides.”

“The complaint also alleges that the project’s developer misstated the size of the home in order to avoid an environmental safety study. The objections of the plaintiff were ignored throughout the hearing process,” the suit alleges.  

Before the May 2 PLUM hearing, Crane Boulevard Safety Coalition made an appeal to stop the project at 464 Crane. However, the plaintiff alleges that a deputy to Eunisses Hernandez of CD1 communicated with a deputy of PLUM committee Chair Marqueece Harris Dawson CD8.  

Hernandez’s office requested that the appeal to the green light be denied. Hernandez’s office’s wishes were respected.

In a May 10 meeting, the City Council approved the project. 

The lawsuit claims 150 home projects are pending in Mount Washington. 

Banner Tuesday:

Smart Speaker:  Okay, so the street banner program is interesting, we should introduce some banners — that look at the other — I thought this was a good idea — let’s have street banners that examine the other agenda items that you block from public comment, like all the cop stuff you have on today’s agenda — maybe we could have little street banners announcing that we’re funding the cadet program — 

Also, I want to say Overdose Awareness Day…I support this, of course.   But what about overdosing on fatuous presentations in city hall by fallen civil rights leaders who can’t recognize the tiny scope —

City Attorney:  Speaker, which item are you speaking to?

Smart Speaker: I was talking about the overdose awareness day and overdosing by the city council… on illuminations of the city hall. You hear about it every week…this is an illumination… or no?

Who is this? By the way, you seem very argumentative. What’s your name? 

Paul Krekorian, President: Get on the topic!  Get on the topic.

Smart Speaker:  Thank you Mr. Krekorian I don’t like to be interrupted. Item 20 is the speed safety pilot program. Wow, that sounds like nailing residents 

City Attorney:   Item 20 is not available. You can speak to 20 in your general public comment.

Smart Speaker:  Let’s go back to 20.  Do you want me to go to general public comment? OK, give me the full sixty seconds and I’ll go to general public comment. OK.

Paul Krekorian, President: OK, that’s good. General public comment one minute, please.

Smart Speaker:  OK, thank you. And I apologize for any problems there, you run a toxic ship.

Sir, the City Council needs to make a vote to agree to give records to the District Attorney related to the Curren Price situation so that they can proceed with whatever investigation they want to do.

Am I impressed by the investigation, not necessarily, but that’s what the city council has to do, because of the privilege  — and FYI,  I am an attorney-client privilege litigant and expert. You’ll recall that I went all the way to the California Supreme Court and won a case against the county with the ACLU, Mr. Krekorian in case you forgot. I know you get confused, but it’s not your privilege or Hydee Feldstein-Soto’s privilege, or the city council’s privilege.  Curren Price is the one who has the privilege, but he is being investigated by the DA.  So, the city council has to say “Let’s give the DA what they need so that they can do their job and pursue their investigation in the interest of justice.”

Because we know that’s what you want - Council member Krekorian - you adore justice.  

And it’s not about whether you like Curren Price or not.  Everybody likes Curren Price, but this is a question of the ground rules and the laws that we all abide by.  So, that’s what I would ask you to do and— 

Paul Krekorian, President:   Thank you, next caller.

“Seeing none, go forth and serve the city well.”

Smart Speaker:  Well, OK, it’s nice that you’re doing some public service announcements — good work on destination Crenshaw I know that it’s been controversial as part of a major gentrification project - you know the world keeps on spinning and hopefully there is a place for the people who live here in Los Angeles.   

LA for All, as they say in the business, it is for everyone, including students from private schools. It was nice to hear among the long list of students that Krekorian is grooming - for their parents to give some money - that there were a least a few, actually many private schools among the public schools he rattled off.  So very nice to be inclusive there.  And then to ram something up the ass of the people of Studio City in a non-consensual manner. Very very sweet.  

Items one and two warrant a quick look to make it clear that we are on the subject but these are dry as a bone, if you like dry bones.  Although Vigil Way is naming something, John Lee is naming something after a woman’s husband. She’s in her seventies and nice so I’m not going to — they’re naming the street where they lived after her husband. Vigil way. 

I am deeply moved that John Lee found a way to make this happen, given all the red tape and difficulties and the naming crises out in his District, as you recall, Englander, a fallen… felon, has left his footprint, and imprint and scent all over the district currently managed by Staffer B, John Lee. 

I checked for campaign contributions and yes, she gave him some money, but who cares?  In June of 2023… contributions are contributions.  It doesn’t matter.  They’re legal! Right, Council member Krekorian?  That’s what you always say. There’s no problem. And you can have stuff named after you as long as you’re willing to cooperate and I think she’s done a nice job so thank you to Staffer B. He didn’t have a terrible intern presentation a couple of weeks ago. Unlike Krekorians’ show, Lee's was when the kids were still around and so they actually attended. [Krekorian is wicked smaht.]

There is nothing quite like the breadth and depth of the robust effort among Harvard Westlake Trustees to support Paul Krekorian in their quest to screw over Studio City.  And special thanks to John Amato, the Harvard-Westlake visionary slash gym teacher who along with Thomas Hudnut, found a way to navigate right into the hub of CD2 where Paul Krekorian and his team generously invited a Harvard Westlake student for a tour that resulted in Russel Goldsmith of City National Bank —

City Attorney:  Mr. Preven, I am going to ask that you stick to the items or please identify the item that you’re speaking on.

Smart Speaker:  Well, first of all, thank you for paying attention. I am going to identify this as item number 2. Which as you can see is completely related. OK?

What I wanted to finish - the point there - was once you connect with a ringleader they are happy to ring the bell at all the homes of the private school trustees and then out of the sky fall - this is a beautiful story - maximum contributions.  Lots of them.   Right into Krekorian’s officeholder or if you happen to be running — 

At this moment, there’s no need to give… other than to say thank you, because Krekorian is now moving on.  He’s terming out.  Damage done.  Raman is the one holding the ... spine.

Rumor has it Krekorian is going to run his own airline with flights out of Burbank Airport.  Why not?  Try the old hand at the airline business… You’ve done a nice job with Metro, sir.  

City Attorney: General public comment.

Smart Speaker:  Thank you, I didn’t get any feedback Mr. Groat, and it's my understanding that you are the acting city attorney, on yesterday’s tasteful request to simply agendize an item to provide the requested records to the district attorney’s office regarding Curren Price. 

The attorney-client privilege is to Curren Price.

The other members of the council cannot invoke the privilege. If the other council members feel that they are somehow implicated… get some legal advice.  

But let’s agree that the public has a very strong interest in the disclosure of these public records. 

This will help Curren Price get back to work.  I mean he’s not a bad guy.  I know Mr. Harris Dawson wasn’t pleased with him when, during the backroom brawl, Price was clinging to Exposition Park and everything else.

Mr. Harris Dawson couldn’t get shit.. but look who’s on top, now!

Thank you.  Thank you sir, very nicely done. Nicely done. Very nicely done. 

Finally, I know that Time Warner wants a refund for nearly sixty grand, but given the situation with Spectrum and Disney, is there any way we can say … No refund for you. 

City Attorney:  Your time has expired. 

Smart Speaker:  Thank you Groat.

Motorola Solutions, Inc. The 21st Amendment:

I thought I was looking at  the Land Mobile Radio Network and PremierOne Computer-Aided Dispatch System for LAPD  but then there was a caveat:

"Should funding in future fiscal years not be appropriated to the LAFD, Contract Section 3.E., Compensation and Method of Payment, Limitation of City’s Obligation to Make Payments to Contractor, protects the City from any claims by the Contractor for payment until the City makes an appropriation of funds for such work."

LAFD? Whatever, so no claims against the city until the Mayor and Blumenfield appropriate the money to honor the agreement. That's silly, but what's not silly is that years ago when this contract came before the city there was a full-court press like the one missing from Mejia in support of Jamie York, to cement Motorola's product in the city's DNA. 

Thanks to Bob Blumenfield for riding shotgun alongside Mitchell Englander and Paul Krekoran who helped ease in an entire generation of Motorola and Taser dba Axon ripoffs.

And thanks to the McCoskers and Arnie Berghoff who were ballers long before some of these new councilmembers were born.  And let's take a moment to recognize the entire regulated community, especially a young man who came to city hall on a clear mission to git r done for Uncle Harvey (and his massive list of clients.)

Englander has served his 15 months and apparently resides in Santa Monica but back in the bad old days he teed up some of the worst LAPD and LAFD contracts ever with 15 ayes.

Some of the city's most bloated and clumsy wastes of money that we live with and protect every single day... like Wednesday when item nine on the agenda buried in the items for which public hearings have been held section:  

  1. AUTHORIZE the Chief of Police, or designee, to negotiate and execute the Twenty-First Amendment to Contract No. C-123897 // 21st Amendment between the City and Motorola Solutions, Inc., for the maintenance, support, and upgrade of the Land Mobile Radio Network and PremierOne Computer-Aided Dispatch System used by the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD).  increase funding for the contract with Motorola Solutions, Inc. as provided by the General Fund in the amount of $16,433,974, and from the Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) grant program by $4,000,000.

One way to appear visible in the City's telecast is to die and arrange for an adjournment. RIP

(Eric Preven is a longtime community activist and is a contributor to CityWatch. The opinions of Mr. Preven are not necessarily those of CityWatchLA.com.)