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ERIC PREVEN'S NOTEBOOK

ERIC PREVEN’S NOTEBOOK - Tuesday's LA County Board of Supervisors meeting agenda for July 9, 2024 covers a broad range of topics, including appointments to commissions, economic protections for small businesses, and enhancing risk management efforts. It also focuses on equitable governance, youth programming in probation facilities, a parking fee waiver for lifeguard candidates, and government accountability through charter reform.

Smart Speaker:  One idea is not to cancel and overload all of your public meetings. You have nearly eighty items and we haven't seen the supplemental budget yet.   [That's free advice!]. Eighty seems like compared to City Council's 200 earlier this week.  

Additional items include firearms vendor compliance, parking enforcement, community safety, support for foster youth, and gender impact assessments. Various infrastructure projects, funding agreements, and contract amendments are also on the agenda. The meeting will address elections, tax levies, and multiple settlements. A special closed session will cover legal counsel for anticipated litigation. 

Smart Speaker:   Supervisors [not just the vigorous chair] can influence the direction of the board... FYI. 

Full Display:

Reed Hastings of Netflix has become one of the first big Democratic Party megadonors to call on President Joe Biden to step down ahead of the 2024 presidential election. "Biden needs to step aside to allow a vigorous Democratic leader to beat Trump and keep us safe and prosperous." 

Smart Speaker:  Lindsey Horvath is feisty...  but Joe Biden said very clearly, "As long as I'm president, we're not walking away -- from our ideals, our alliances, or our democracy." 

The City Council's ideals are on full display three times a week.  

On Tuesday, the last meeting before a month-long hiatus. 

Paul Krekorian, Council President, CD2:   Mr. Price could you please lead us in the flag salute?   

Curren D. Price, CD9:  Out of an abundance of caution, I am recusing myself on items 38, 39, 40 ,126 and 130, because as presented I can't determine who is working on those projects.  Additionally, I am recusing myself from items 108, 134, 136, 145, and 158, due to my wife's employer having worked with applicants in the past, and per the city attorney, I am recusing myself from 141 because I am a housing provider.  

Paul Krekorian, Council President, CD2:  Alright, very good thank you, so all of those items will be held on the desk for the purposes of Mr. Price's recusal. Mr. Price? 

Curren D. Price, CD9:  I would ask that we hold 109 on the desk for comments.   

Smart Speaker:  What about you, Senator Krekorian, you're a housing provider.  Remember? 

Curren D. Price:  I pledge allegiance to the flag ... 

After a dizzying number of little notes and amendments from all of the very professional seeming council members, Bob Blumenfield of CD3, requested some changes - a lot of changes -  on item 129, be read into the record.  He noted that the CLA was involved ... [Hello, Sharon Tso!]

A Blumenfield, Raman motion relative to funding for Multi-Disciplinary Teams (MDT) within Council District CD2 and CD3. 

Paul Krekorian, Council President, CD2:  So, we'll need to read those into the record. So, Mr. City Attorney.  

Jonathan Groat, Deputy City Attorney:  So, the motion on item number 129 from Councilmember Blumenfield reads that "I move that ...  ( Groat read for nine straight minutes setting a 2024 City Hall read-in record. The time code from 1:13:50 to 1:22:47 on the Youtube recording )... That's the end of the motion.  

Paul Krekorian, Council President, CD2:  Thankfully!  (then) So, Councilmember McOsker, I believe you're the seconder. To the folks who took the time and effort to come down to the council chambers I just want to explain and apologize that we have to read these technical things into the record. They are all posted on the board so if you want to read them on your own they are posted. up there.  

 

Paul Krekorian, Council President, CD2: The reason that we have to do this out loud like that is because there are people who want to comment on the phones who don't have access to the boards and so ... in order to accommodate those who are calling on the phones we have to read it out loud. So I apologize that some of this seems tedious and long-winded but that is just the way we have to do it.  

In a perfect world, Krekorian would be automatically pelted with six large bushels of ripe fruits and vegetables.    

Influential Disruptors:

Katy Yaroslavsky rose to discuss her concern that a "proxy war here is a real threat."   She reminded that protesting is okay but there is no right to violence."  

Paul Krekorian interrupted her twice to instruct law enforcement to "find them, and exclude them."  He was referring to disruptors. 

 

Prosecution!  Paul Krekorian: "Find them, and exclude them." 

I couldn't help but smile when I noted, LA Times Influential is sort of like a pun on LA Time Confidential.  So many familiar faces: Ryan Murphy, Peter Eliasberg, Danny Bakewell, Miguel Santana, Mayor Butts 

Hugo Soto Martinez recused himself on item 51, because he allegedly has a stake in the charging station company.   He should be more specific.  Does he mean Voltera?

 

LA Influential Squad:  Eunisses Hernandez (CD1), Nithya Raman (CD4) and Hugo Soto-Martinez (CD13)

 

Announcement of Legal Settlements during Shitshow! 

Hopefully, people are paying attention, because as reported earlier many of these settlements are not carefully scrutinized by the public or the  Mayor, the City Attorney or the Coun\cil President.  Maybe we can ask Robert Stern the grand poobah of California Corruption, who Paul Krekorian said was "one of the greatest champions of government reform in the history of California.”   

Smart Speaker: Don't be modest, sir, you put him in there.  How old is Bob?  I feel a birthday coming on. 

$345,000 on item 106, Damian Brown v. Los Angeles Fire Department, et al., Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. 22STCV22747. This matter arises from allegations of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and failure to accommodate and provide responsible accommodations for a Los Angeles Fire Department firefighter.   

$950,000 on item 107, Grady Dunning, arises from a fall from a bicycle that occurred on June 25, 2022, on 836 Radcliff Avenue, in the City of Los Angeles. The Pacific Palisades are lovely. See LAT feature (for subscribers only).   

$1,073,312. on item 110, Bomb Squad settlement for one injured party.   

$1,850,000 on item 111, Patricia Hines is the name of a woman advocate who lost a child in traffic in the eighties.  Cannot tell if this, the largest settlement on today's 200 items is her.   Thank you.    

112 $ 150,000 This matter arises from a trip and fall incident on a cracked alleyway located at 8600 Willis Avenue in the City of Los Angeles.  I don't see the alleyway, but fair enough.

It's only $150,000!

The settlement terms for item 113 (one potential case), relative to a sanitary sewer overflow near the 6th Street Bridge on July 18, 2016 was not read into the record  - SNEAKY AND INAPPROPRIATE - why not?  

$175,000 to settle item 114 related to the Bomb Squad.  

The offer of settlement for item 115 is being REFUSED without any airing of the terms to the public. The matter arises from an incident involving a Los Angeles Police Department officer on or about September 5, 2022. 

$1,000,000 on item 116, The Complaint alleges that plaintiffs' decedent and father Jose Perez was working on a project for the City that involved upgrading underground sedimentation tanks at the Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant in Playa del Rey, including the removal of existing mechanical parts and units, as well as piping, valves, and pumps, and replacement of parts. The tanks hold approximately a million gallons each and are approximately 20-plus feet deep.  

The Complaint further alleges that on March 8, 2021, while decedent was manually lifting with a co-worker a tank cover on a sedimentation tank, the tank cover's hinged flap handle on the co-worker's end broke, causing the tank cover to drop into the tank. When the co-worker's end dropped, the hinged flap handle on decedent's end trapped his hand. He was unable to let go of the tank cover, and as a result, decedent was thrown 20-plus feet into the tank to his death.  

Smart Speaker: Only ONE million?  In April 2024, City Council unanimously approved a settlement of up to $21 million for Ismael Soto Luna who received a falling street lamp... in the head.  

$850,000 on item 153, Dawn Loryne v. City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. 19STCV25758. This matter arises from a claim under the Fair Employment & Housing Act for Failure to Accommodate, Failure to engage in the Interactive Process, Disability Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation.   

$300,000 on item 154,  Siranush (Sarah) Arakelian v. City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. 18STCV09091. This matter arises from an Office of Finance employee’s allegations of discrimination and other claims under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act.   

$440,000  on item 155,  Saptarshi Majumdar v. City of Los Angeles, et al., Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. 21STCV25162. This matter arises from a vehicle versus pedestrian traffic collision on August 6, 2020, at or near the intersection of Colby Avenue and Missouri Avenue.

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