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Wed, Jun

LA Off The Record

ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK

ERIC PREVEN’S NOTEBOOK - Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:   And again, before we proceed with the next speaker it has come to our attention that actually all of the evening-numbered pages on the hard copies that were handed out are missing. But to be clear, the full agenda is available, scrolling on the screen in the back, and it was also posted online. So if you want to access it, you can access it online, and anybody who was checking online would have access to the entire agenda. Thank you. And we do now have a complete agenda posted in the back? 

Smart Speaker:  In the back! 

LA: Off The Record 

Los Angeles City Councilmember Katy Yaroslavsky offered a proposal this week to reduce the number of legally required council meetings. 

While honoring Mark J. Gonzalez Candidate for #AD54 (Sebastian's old seat, and all y'all) | LACDP Chair Em. |  @JoeBiden  alum 

 

By way of introduction, I am an open government advocate and local journalist from Studio City and I frequently comment at LA city council meetings and county board meetings. 

Despite my best efforts, I have been unable to comment publicly at any of the last four city council meetings, or two special meetings. This is very creepy.  I have written about the lack of transparency about how the city manages the queue of call-in speakers and demanded an explanation as to how the city decides who will speak. The City Clerk, CityAttorney, and surprisingly, Ted Ross, the head of ITA, refuse to provide any clarity. 

A recent column that I wrote on the subject of public comment is up for a press club award later this month. 

So, this is not a criticism, just an offer to comment On The Record, to provide an opposing view about the proposed reduction in public meetings, alongside The League of Women Voters and Yaroslavsky.   

For one thing, how can a reduction even be considered given that virtual testimony at committee meetings has been decimated?  

Smart Speaker:  It can't. 

Katy Yaroslavsky comes from a long line of comment reducers.  Many will remember the voice of Carmaggedon and Pa-in-law, Zev Yaroslavsky recharging the public comment discourse by launching a 2012 attack on a very effective speaker and button pusher from Studio City.  Joel Bellman, Zev's press hack was assigned to destroy him.  That backfired.  link

 

BREAKING (It's been weeks, but still) 

Have any of sharp reporters over at the Times noticed the new policy at the county regarding contributions over $250 from interested parties on items on the county board agenda?   

Edward Yen, The latest Executive Officer of the County of Los Angeles. 

 

Tuesday, the county featured a 20-recusal salute and invocation of The Rule of Necessity four separate times. This is a rule where because three of the Supervisors took the money and recused, at least one is needed for a vote, so they pick one recipient of money from a hat and shove it through. No need to give back the moolah!  Giving back is off the table.  Obv.  

Glen Dake, an old chum of the former Mayor and current US Ambassador to India, Eric Garcetti, is a very civically engaged fellow, it turns out. Usually he's more discreet, but this is excellent.  

Executive Officer: Due to conflicts of interest the board of supervisors no longer has a quorum of members necessary to make a decision on 58. Under the rule of necessity members of  the board of supervisors who have a conflict will be chosen by random means. Number 58, Supervisor Mitchell recused herself from the vote pursuant to 84308 because she received a contribution or contributions of more than $250 within the past 12 months from Glen Dake, a party, participant or an agent.  

Supervisor Horvath recused herself because she received a contribution or contributions of more than $250 within the past 12 months from Glen Dake a party, participant or agent in the proceeding.  

Supervisor Hahn recused herself pursuant to 84308 because she received a contribution or contributions of more than $250 within the past 12 months from Glen Dake, a party, participant or agent in the proceeding.   

The receipt of these contributions requires Supervisors Mitchell, Horvath and  Hahn to recuse themselves however the participation of one disqualified member can vote on item,  is legally required because there is no alternative source of the decision under government code section 26227. The names of the disqualified members Supervisors Mitchell, Horvath and Hahn have been placed in a bag, i'll select one member to be called for the role. Supervisor Hahn has been drawn.  

Executive Officer: Item number 58 is before you.  

Supervisor Solis? 

Sup. Hilda Solis: Aye.  

Executive Officer:  Supervisor Mitchell recuses herself from the vote. 

Supervisor Hahn? 

Sup. Janice Hahn: Aye. 

Executive Officer: Supervisor Barger.  

Sup. Kathryn Barger: Aye.  

Executive Officer: Supervisor Horvath recuses herself from the vote. Motion carries 3-0 with two recusals.  

Idea:  Maybe Krekorian's beloved and unimpressive Ethics Commission, where Krekorian himself served "a million years ago" should examine the transparency concept closely before... burying it in the ground while Yaraoslvaksy Jr. fights to structurally limit public input, so she can serve her customers more carefully.  

Pass. 

 An Orwellian Wonderland spinoff:  

“It is hoped that holding general public comment until after the agenda items have been addressed will allow more members of the public to address the items currently before the Council,” said Hugh Esten in sleazy Orwellian swerve. And if it's in the open for comment section of the agenda, it's a REAP item or another snooze.

"The citizen’s weekly chocolate ration will be increased from 30  to 20 grams." 

Even though the council rules state that “general public comment” usually needs to be taken at the beginning, Esten told Elizabeth Chou of the Los Angeles Public Press that such a change can be made “at the discretion of the presiding officer.”  Esten said that the new rules will be in place, “until further notice.”  

Smart Speaker:  Past changes to council rules have been made by a vote by the city council.

This week Raman told Marqueece Harris-Dawson, the council president-elect, "I encourage you to use your power to cancel meetings as needed." 

Smart Speaker:  I encourage you to disclose and recuse every contribution over $250.

Eunisses Hernandez of CD1 in a statement to Los Angeles Public Press said she hopes “we can work together to reconsider these recent procedural changes to ensure that public comment is as accessible and impactful as possible for constituents.” 

Smart Speaker:  Work together? Yaroslavsky, like her mommy, Sheila Kramden Kuehl, is pressing for an egregious dismantling of open government.  Yuck

 

Lite and Breezy City Claims Board: 

Starring.... It's a representative of the City Attorney, The Mayor and The Council President's office who each sit in judgment at odd hours.  No special talent or expertise required to serve, just that one of the above, say, "Go listen and vote."  Shocking.  Next time I will post the names of who served on these babies from early June.  

12 trip and falls

7 vehicle collisions

4  Sexual harassment, retaliation

2 Bomb squads

1 Gang injunction

1 Large tree

1 Dog bite

1 Scooter incident 

The Claims Board shall meet in Closed Session, pursuant to Government Code section 54956.9(d) 

(1) to confer with its legal counsel relative to the following cases: FILE NO. 

(2) R24-0250 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Casa Golondrina, Inc v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 23STCV11385; City of Los Angeles v. Casa Golondrina, Inc., LASC Case No. 23STCV29410 and In Re Casa Golondrina, Inc., US Bankr. Case No. 2:24-bk-10422. (These cases concern Casa Golondrina, Inc. (“Casa Golondrina”), the company occupying the former La Golondrina Café space on Olvera Street.)  

(3) R24-0277 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Regina Goff v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 21STCV00064. (This matter arises from an automobile collision that occurred on January 14, 2020, on Western Avenue north of Romaine Street, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(4) R24-0280 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Argelia Alvarado, et al. v. City of Los Angeles LASC Case No. 21STCV27837. (This matter arises from a September 26, 2020, incident involving injuries caused by a dog bite.) Claims Board Meeting Monday, June 3, 2024  

(5) R24-0257 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Diana Woodruff v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV18811. (This matter arises from a fall incident on February 13, 2022, on a center median located near 4734 Sepulveda Boulevard, Sherman Oaks, California.)  

(6) R24-0279 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Linda Mabry v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 19STCV20295. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that took place on June 14, 2018, on the sidewalk near East 85th Street and South Central Avenue, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(7) R24-0251 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Donald Jenkins, Jr. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 21STCV14034. (This matter arises from an April 19, 2020, scooter accident on the eastbound lane of West Harry Bridges Boulevard, in the Wilmington area.)  

(8) R24-0281 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Tonye Jennings v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 19STCV42544. (This matter arises from an automobile collision that occurred on January 5, 2018, at the intersection of San Fernando Road and Pasadena Avenue, in Los Angeles.)  

(9) R24-0252 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Lasalle Lofton, Jr. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 20STCV36560. (This matter arises from alleged discrimination and harassment on the basis of race that occurred between 2019-2021 within the Bureau of Sanitation, and retaliation for reporting the allegations to management.)  

(10) R24-0253 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Vanessa Acosta v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 21STCV31651. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident on September 8, 2020, in the street located at 1616 Bellevue Avenue, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(11) R24-0254 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Aliza Hassine v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV15678. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that occurred on February 4, 2021, on a sidewalk located on Encino Avenue near its intersection with Killion Street, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(12) R24-0278 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Giti Kangavari v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 19STCV29125. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident occurring on December 2, 2018, near the intersection of Whitworth Drive and La Cienega Boulevard, in Los Angeles.) 

(13) R24-0255 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Martha Olivares v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV18752. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that occurred on June 29, 2021, at Kingston Avenue and Pomeroy Avenue, in Los Angeles.)  

(14) R24-0256 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Marilyn Alex v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 20STCV03126. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that occurred on May 17, 2019, on the sidewalk abutting 1523 Maltman Avenue, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(15) R24-0258 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Delbar Barlavi, et al v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 19STCV24782. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident on December 8, 2018, which occurred on the sidewalk at 8180 Manitoba Street, in Playa Del Rey.)  

(16) R24-0259 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case David Torres, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV11114. (This matter arises from a September 19, 2021, incident involving a large tree branch falling onto Plaintiffs’ vehicle on Magnolia Boulevard near Lemp Avenue, in the city of North Hollywood.)  

(17) R24-0260 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Manuel Macias v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 20STCV42824. (This matter arises from a trip and fall accident that occurred on November 16, 2018, near a bus stop located at 437 West 1st Street, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(18) R24-0262 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Mary Lynn Ashby v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV20220. (This matter arises from a trip and fall accident that occurred on September 30, 2021, on the sidewalk abutting 5759 Troost Avenue, in North Hollywood, California.)  

(19) R24-0274 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Stephanie Anushe Cortes v. City of Los Angeles LASC Case No. 22STCV24977. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that occurred on April 30, 2021, near 722 San Julian Street, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(20) R24-0263 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Amir Medizadeh v. City of Los Angeles LASC Case No. 22STCV06810. (This matter arises from a motorcycle accident that occurred on August 13, 2021, near 439 North Fairfax, in Los Angeles.)  

(21) R24-0264 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Nancy Gossett v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 21STCV40431. (This matter arises from a trip and fall incident that occurred on August 9, 2021 in the city of Los Angeles, CA.)  

(22) R24-0265 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Jessica Escarcega v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 21STCV34322. (This matter arises from a motor vehicle versus bicycle incident at the corner of South Los Angeles Street and East 2nd Street, in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(23) R24-0266 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Raymond Levy v. City of Los Angeles CLAIM NO. C24-01556. (This matter arises from an automobile collision that occurred on August 1, 2023 in the city of Los Angeles.)  

(24) R24-0261 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Edwin Joaquin Escamilla, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV05072. (This matter arises out of an automobile accident occurring on February 25, 2020, at the intersection of Van Nuys Boulevard and Valerio Street, in Van Nuys.) 

(25) R24-0267 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Lucia Gonzales v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV09083. (This matter arises from the June 30, 2021, incident in which the LAPD Bomb Squad detonated explosive material.)  

(26) R24-0268 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Devere Jackson v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 20STCV30540. (This matter arises from a vehicle versus vehicle traffic collision on August 24, 2019, which occurred at the intersection of Rosecrans Avenue and Eadall Avenue, in unincorporated Los Angeles County.) 

 (27) R24-0269 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Christian Rodriguez, et al. v. City of Los Angeles USDC Case No. CV11- 1135-DMG (PJWx). (This case concerns allegations the Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights were violated when they were subject to certain Gang injunctions.)  

(28) R24-0270 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Crusader Insurance Company v. City of Los Angeles, et al. CLAIM NO. C22-00564. (This matter arises from the June 30, 2021, incident in which the LAPD Bomb Squad detonated explosive material.)  

(29) R24-0271 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Danielle Tumbleson v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 20STCV11386. (This matter arises from a claim under the Fair Employment and Housing Act for: (1) Gender Discrimination; (2) Sexual Harassment/Hostile Work Environment; and (3) Retaliation.) Claims Board Meeting Monday, June 3, 2024  

(30) R24-0272 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Andrea Marsh v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 19STCV43521. (This matter arises from a claim under the Fair Employment and Housing Act for: (1) Gender/Pregnancy Discrimination; (2) Sexual Harassment/Hostile Work Environment; and (3) Retaliation.)  

(31) R24-0275 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Helodoro Lara v. City of Los Angeles LASC Case No. 20STCV32870. (This matter arises from a vehicle collision that occurred on September 21, 2019, between an LAPD police officer and Plaintiff.)  

(32) R24-0276 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Alex Aguilar, Jr. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. USDC Case No. 2:17-cv-04382 CBM (MRWx). Ninth Circuit Case Nos. 23-55328; 23-55386. (This matter arises from an incident involving members of the Los Angeles Police Department on June 9, 2016, in Los Angeles, California.)  

(33) ------------- City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case M.A.R., a minor, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. LASC Case No. 22STCV20578; Matthew Aaron Rivera, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. USDC Case No. CV21-02957 FWS (MAR). (This is a police tort case against the City of Los Angeles.)  

(34) R24-0246 City Attorney report relative to settlement in the case Ali Pourmola v. City of Los Angeles, LASC Case No. 22SMCV00483. (The complaint in this action alleges dangerous condition of public property and inverse condemnation in connection with a sewer backup incident at 140 Homewood Road, Los Angeles, California.)

(Eric Preven is a longtime community activist and is a contributor to CityWatch. )