19
Wed, Jun

"Yes, ma'am. Yes. sir"

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK - People were excited to hear that Chris Hemsworth was going to get his Star on the Walk Of Fame near Hollywood and Highland now referred to as Ovation.  This is considered an A-list upscale location so considered a vote of confidence for Hemsworth.   Not everyone is equal.  Some lesser stars are offered placement at less desirable locations, relegated to lesser side streets… 

For example, Karen Bass, the mayor would presumably get a Star at a higher profile location than, say, the tireless fighter, Monica Rodriguez (CD7) 

Blowback:

Please note, this meeting was recessed from Wednesday, May 22, 2024.  An opportunity for public comment was held for item 1, council file no. 24-0600, on Wednesday, May 22, 2024 and public comment is now closed. 

Craig Fiegener reported Tim Mcosker said, "I am a yes vote for a balanced budget but I'm going to listen to my colleagues. I'm comfortable with where we are today but it's important to hear from the public and it's also important to deliberate on the full council." 

Harris-Dawson says he's been through the process before and has been happy with it. He went on to say that that could change over the next 48 hours. 

Fiegener reminded that there was very limited public comment and that public speakers who wanted to provide comment should make their comments clear and concise, "because you'll only get a few minutes.” 

Smart Speaker:  You’ll only get ONE minute! Craig! 

Power Tripping:

In New York City, Council Speaker Adrienne Adams has initiated a plan to reduce Mayor Eric Adams’s authority by proposing legislation requiring the mayor to obtain Council approval for 21 commissioner-level appointments. This move, reported by The New York Times, aims to significantly increase Council oversight of mayoral appointments. In response, Mayor Adams quickly opposed the plan.   

Meanwhile, a contentious debate unfolded in downtown Los Angeles during an unplanned discussion at a budget meeting focused on the city’s Gang Reduction & Youth Development (GRYD) program. Councilmember Paul Krekorian brought up “Item 108,” which pertains to the GRYD program. The proposal suggested holding the program's funding in the Unallocated Budget (UB) until it reports to Monica Rodriguez’s public safety committee.  

Could Monica Rodriguez be wearing a "copper" wire inside the large flower?

During public comment, the GRYD program, managed by the mayor’s office, faced backlash from interventionists who perceived the proposal to pause the funding as a slight by the Council. Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez expressed his empathy towards the public comments made regarding the issue.  

Monica Rodriguez, notably upset, criticized the Mayor’s office for allegedly pressuring Councilmember Bob Blumenfield to concede. Blumenfield who is spineless eventually agreed to remove the program from the UB on the condition that the mayor’s office commits to reporting on it.  

Paul Krekorian may have chipped a tooth.

The situation escalated when Rodriguez accused the Mayor’s office of lying, describing their behavior as "reckless and dangerous."  She emphasized that the only acceptable response to the Council should be affirmative. Rodriguez, visibly frustrated, reiterated her demand for transparency and accountability, particularly highlighting the importance of honest communication with the public and council members.  Members of the public threw up a little in our mouths. 

As tensions rose, the mayor’s office, represented by Matt Hale, one of Paul Krekorian's guys, assured that GRYD would report to the Public Safety Committee in June.   

Paul Krekorian, puffed up like a blowfish asserting the Council’s authority, insisted that any refusal by mayoral staff to report to the Council or its committees is unacceptable, “The only response to this council [when it asks for something] is "yes, ma'am and yes. sir.”   

The meeting highlighted broader issues of governance and accountability between the Mayor’s office and the City Council, with both sides striving to assert their influence over critical public programs and decision-making processes.   

If yer not first, yer 124th!

Do to the high cost of living New York and Los Angeles were 124 and 126 on the list of best places to live.  Yikes. 

Funny, that Boise, Idaho a city that has been waging a legal battle over powerwashing the unhoused population had a high rating. The only city in California that crested the top 25 was San Francisco?  Huh? 

Respectfully, Los Angeles should be top ten. 

Tuesday Newsday:

Smart Speaker:  Yeah it’s Eric Preven,  I’d like to speak on the available items and also a general public comment. 

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  Okay. Good morning you have three minutes for the items and one minute for general public comment. Please begin with the items.  

Smart Speaker:  OK, we are in a state of Emergency.  

FYI, I was just listening to things over at the county board of supervisors meeting. 

They’ve been dragging LAHSA prisoners out into the light — 

I don’t want to provoke De Leon and Rodriguez… let me get on the items, I’ll come back to that in General.   Item 15 is the Reseda Riverpark Greenway project.  Whenever I hear the term Greenway, Council member Yaroslavsky, I think of your father-in-law … and of the great Zev Greenway in Studio City.  

You Raman and Krekorian are aware that this is a hotly contested project and right now it is sad because there is an attack on the Trees and the neighborhood by Harvard-Westlake and Krekorian and Raman are holding hands dissenting because the ethics reform package is too weak. I am so nauseous by this whole thing… murdering trees to put up athletic complexes paid for by corporate raiders is not a light and festive area for those of us who live in Studio City.   

So, listen the Greenway project sounds good, it’s out in CD3 in Blumenfield’s district. And you know after that splashy presentation to the Korean boy band by Doane Liu the LA minister of tourism, I was thinking how about a tourist attraction — how about a museum out in the Valley?  

Introducing, The Museum of Corruption (tm)… maybe we could have it out at the Cube and Blumenfield could recuse because his wife owns it or ran it or something… I just think that may be a nice way to draw people into LA the same way we got Staffer B out there promoting the Rize K Pop band.  Very nice work by the way.  I really like the way everybody has a good feeling.  Let’s get that LA in a minute guy back here… He’s terrific.  

Item Eighteen, the clean team. The LA in a minute works on the clean team.  Cleaning up LA’s image.  All these indictments and negativity is getting old. We want a fresher feeling.  

Eunisses Hernandez, in one the most insidious maneuvers in recent memory, wants to only have one council meeting per week. Rufkm 

So drop two-thirds of the weekly council meetings and adopt an “ignore the public” ONCE a week program.  Yes, the same Eunisses who marched outside city hall with the renters about how only one comment on the budget was appalling.  And now you are agreeing to one meeting and so comment a week  — do you really think that’s a good idea?  

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney: Mr. Preven I can’t tell which item you are speaking on. 

Smart Speaker:  Even though I like you, it’s time to resign.  

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  So I need you to identify the items you are speaking on or I’m going to move you to general public comment.  

Smart Speaker:  Alright, I’ll go to number 19.  Thank you.  By the way, Groat.  You’re doing a very good job.  We are going to get you in that K-pop band.   Regarding  protected trees 

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  So, again, I need you to —move on to the items or I am going to move you to general public comment.  

Smart Speaker:   Regarding protected tree enforcement, item number 19 - Lock in, don’t interrupt me again or I will have to have you arrested.  OK, protected tree enforcement … this is one where I have to change my tone a little bit, because we are all very aroused by this work.  This is a nice thing to do, this is Nithya Raman putting on soft music and being very nice.   This is very very nice.   We are a little puzzled by it because she’s ignored the plan by Harvard Westlake to put a giant athletic complex on our golf course, and a plan to put up a giant basketball court in our field… 

Raman appears to b in lockstep with Herr Krekorian on this horrible  

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  General public comment.  

Smart Speaker:  Oh, is it General public comment time?   

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  Yes.  

Smart Speaker:   OK, I was hoping to get to the Algin Sutton item,, because I appreciate what Marqueece Harris-Dawson is dealing with and I want to remind everyone that Prop K does not stand for Krekorian.  And it doesn’t stand for Karadjian either.  It stands for the Kids… the children. Prop K for kids. But by doing what they’re planning at Studio City Rec Center, is actually an attack on the Kids and I don’t think it’s okay. 

Therefore, I think you need to back yo shit up. And find a way to get Brad Sherman to deploy the federal money to put up a high school regulation basketball court in a grassy field for something better.  Why does he want to send a beloved rec center to the landfill?  Don’t do it. 

We don’t need so many high school regulation basketball courts for the billionaire brats from the Westside. And feel free to tell that to Neil Drucker. The Prop K maven.  Prop K is for Drucker . He gets credit for the round-off back handspring to move money from the poor CD8 to —Krekorian’s dirty — 

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  Your time has expired.  

County Supervision:

There were over 100 items on Tuesday's Board meeting agenda, including four sole source contracts, and an Appointment and Salary of ($368,000) for the NEW Executive Officer, Board of Supervisors  EDWARD YEN. 

Also, Mark Pestrella, the Director of Public Works’ requested that Susan Herman be employed as Public Works Consultant II at a rate of $101.46 per hour for up to 960 total hours of work in each fiscal year; and certify that it is necessary for Susan Herman, who possesses extensive and unique expertise, to critically-needed expertise on the high-profile homelessness initiatives in the County.    Gulp.   

But the plat du jour was an epic dressing down of LAHSA. 

Item 27 amounted to hours of bureaucratic shape-shifting as the board winced at the ineffectiveness of LAHSA.

 

Item 18 made eminently clear that to ensure Readiness for the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Board of Supervisors should...   pack their bags for Paris! Why? 

To ensure the Memorandum of Understanding on Cultural Olympic Cooperation Between the City of Los Angeles, the County of Los Angeles, the City of Paris, and the Département de Seine-Saint-Denis is working well. Item 22.  

Moderator: Next is Eric Preven, you may begin.  

Smart Speaker: Thank you. My heart goes out to the county and the supervisors and LAHSA. This may not be popular but it is time to disband LAHSA.  It’s not working well. Too many good people are being chewed up by it and will be chewed up by it. I'm wondering if we can find a way, like some of the finger pointer-oriented people at city hall. Let’s lock arms and disband it. 

It’s simply too big and cumbersome and doesn't work. Like CES. How much money and energy and then more money? Is this a question of competence?   Misapplication of funds?  Look, a failure to get the money out of the door over and over again becomes a question of accountability for taxpayers. We are not at all happy about this, FYI.  And nice job scheduling a four-hour meeting before public comment. You know how hard it that makes it — 

Executive Officer: Your time has expired, may we have the next speaker please.  

Moderator: Eric Preven you may begin.  

Smart Speaker: thank you. And this is the follow-up to two meetings ago. The Sheriff did a good job. The county spends time quietly pitting departments against each other. I don't think we should head to a Shark Tank-like finale where Supervisor Mitchell decides to back the technology group that makes the app.   We have -- these are long standing problems. We should be revamping. We need to let people approve the situation.   

Pestrella is probably too busy to talk about it - because he’s too busy to avoid the contact with Harvard Westlake, we’ve asked for.  He has a lot on his plate. He and Supervisor Horvath, don't care about the people -- 

Executive Officer: Your time has expired. Next speaker, please.  

Moderator: Madam chair there are no other remote speakers to address the board.  

Moderator: Eric Preven you may begin.  

Smart Speaker: These wait times, this is a dysfunctional system. It has to be accessible in a timely manner for these. Very, very nice kind of concierge level upgrade. I will say we should have listened to the court when they wrote paragraph 73 that said let them out of the probation camps.  

I have an idea, let’s have the board offices set up a residency at the El Padrino facility.  We can start with Holly Mitchell's office.  And then the other board offices can follow.  We can rotate. 

Everybody has cell phones, and the safety at these places will skyrocket with Supervisor Mitchell asking the hard questions… repeatedly.  

Nobody is going to engage in pepper spraying a young person or hazing when she’s around. 

Moderator: Your time has expired, next speaker please.

Our next participant is Eric Preven. You may begin.  

Smart Speaker: Thank you. And what a nice idea to have such a broad and inclusive recognition of immigrants in society. So important. And let's also try to get Mr. Ramirez back and stop calling him Victor, Madam Chair, because his name is Hector. So we don't want him to feel that we're getting his name wrong. And I want to also say that it's so important to celebrate the whole variety of immigrants that we have, which is, you know,  ranges from this to that and everything in between. I think sometimes we get lost in the political power dynamics that you guys are constantly pandering to, and I just think it's really important that even if you come from a small, inconsequential country where you don't come with great blocks of voters and workers …you’re still welcome here at the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, although you have to wait until the bitter end to give public comment. 

Diplomatic Speaker:  I’m a trustee, I speak in favor of item number 24. I applaud the board's proposal to change the Jane Fonda day to another day other than April 30th... 

Not So Diplomatic Speaker:  Hi, good afternoon. Thank you very much for giving me the chance to talk. I thank you, the board of supervisors, to consider to the day of April 28th to April 8th, because they deserve that honor because Jane Fond went to Hanoi and supported the Vietnamese community to denounce America. She's a traitor and committed treason to the American people… 

Executive officer: The next regular meeting of the 24 board is Tuesday, June 4, 2024 at 9:30 am.

 

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