April 7, 2010
In this issue
Paul Explains his vote against the DWP
Ban on Mobile Billboards set in motion
Krekorian Joins Prestigious Panel on Sustainability
Constituent Case of the Week
Krekorian to release iPhone App
Paul Celebrates Local Milestone
Councilmember Paul Krekorian is pleased to announce his completely redesigned website, cd2.lacity.org.
On the website, users will be able to access a community calendar, keep up-to-date with the latest news and more.
The regular meeting of the Studio City Residents Association will be held Thursday, April 15. Residents will get an update on the efforts by Save L.A. River Open Space (formerly, Save Studio City Golf & Tennis), to preserve open space for the community. State Sen. Fran Pavley is slated to deliver the key-note remarks. Light refreshments will be served at 7 p.m. and the meeting is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. The Association meets in the Beverly Garland's Holliday Inn Theater, 4222 Vineland Ave, Studio City. Get directions here.
The 2nd Annual Greater Valley Glen Council / Valley Glen Firefighters' Pancake Breakfast and community fair is slated to take place on Sunday, April 25, 2010. The pancake breakfast lasts from 9 a.m. to noon inside the LAFD Valley Glen Fire Station 102, 13200 Burbank Blvd. The community fair lasts from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Lot G of Los Angeles Valley College, along Burbank Blvd., at Ethel Ave., across the street from the fire station.
For more events, please visit our Community Calendar.
Don't see you event listed? Email us!
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Paul Explains His Vote Against the Rate Hikes
Last week, I led the charge against the Department of Water and Power’s proposal to raise your electricity rates.
In my view, the proposed increase was not adequately justified, and the process by which it was proposed was not sufficiently transparent. I argued against any increase at this time, and ultimately that was the position adopted by the full City Council.
The residents and businesses of Los Angeles are suffering today to a degree that we have not seen since the Great Depression. At a time when people are losing their jobs and their homes, and businesses are shutting down, a rate increase would have been a tremendous added burden.
Worse, the residents of our district would have been unfairly and disproportionately impacted. Nearly half of all people who live in CD2 are ratepayers in tiers two and three - the strata that would be most affected by the rate hike. Now was certainly not the time to ask San Fernando Valley residents and businesses to pay even more when we have not received even the most basic of details to explain and justify the DWP’s plan.
To justify any increase in rates, the DWP should have been making the case to residents, to business groups, to neighborhood councils; they should have been speaking to you and to me about exactly why this rate hike was essential at that time. Instead, the Department developed the proposed increase with minimal public input and no clear explanation about the long-term consequences or purposes of asking rate payers for more money.
I voted against the DWP’s proposal because I wanted to make clear that any rate hikes proposed by the Department must be vetted in the most responsible and transparent fashion.
Because this proposed increase failed, there can now be no increase at all prior to July 1. I anticipate that the DWP will continue to press for an increase in the coming months, and I will keep you informed of all such proposals.
In the meantime, for more information about the DWP’s proposals and the Council’s actions, visit this website.
As always, I welcome your thoughts. Please feel free to contact my office and share your views.
Very truly yours,
Councilmember, 2nd District
Krekorian Joins Prestigious Panel on Sustainability
Paul (third from right), was joined by five other leaders in the field of sustainability on a panel moderated by Mary Nichols (center), chair of the California Air Resources Board. | Photo from the office of Councilmember Paul Krekorian.
LOS ANGELES - Speaking to some of Los Angeles's most environmentally driven and active residents, Councilmember Paul Krekorian addressed the need Tuesday for increased sustainability programs in this city while also stressing that the path to a greener L.A. must be as transparent as possible.
Krekorian's remarks took place during the Los Angeles Business Council's annual Sustainability Summit, which also featured talks by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Attorney General Jerry Brown and others.
But it was the mid-morning panel that addressed what the city, state and businesses are doing to significantly improve our stock of renewable resources.
"I share [Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's] vision for a more renewable energy supply here. But the getting it right part is critical," Krekorian said. "If we move toward a renewable portfolio that is not cost efficient, that does not ensure system reliability, that ends up requiring more back-up reliance on fossil fuels...If we get any of that part wrong it could have disastrous consequences for Los Angeles, for ratepayers and even for our environment.
"Yes we have to get started," Krekorian continued. "Yes we have to move down the road, yes we have to seize this day, but we also have to make sure we're thoughtful about it."
Krekorian, the author of legislation in the state that delivered some of California's toughest environmental standards, was joined on the panel by Randy Britt, Director of Sustainability Initiatives for the LAUSD; Paul Gipe, Founder, Wind Works; Steve Hill, President, Kyocera Solar, Inc.; and, Pedro Pizarro, Executive Vice-President of Power Operations for Southern California Edison.
Mary Nichols, a national leader in environmental policy and current chair of the California Air Resources Board, moderated the group.
For a video of the panel, visit the media section of our website.
Krekorian Calls for Ban on Mobile Billboards
From the Daily News:
CITY HALL - Increasingly frustrated over the proliferation of mobile billboards throughout Los Angeles, the City Council on Wednesday launched a new effort to ban the trailer signs.
The council asked city officials to draft an ordinance that would ban unhitched trailers that display advertising.
Councilman Paul Krekorian joined with [Councilman Dennis] Zine in calling for a new city law.
"These things are more than a visual blight. they are a public safety hazard," Krekorian said. "They are designed to distract motorists when they should be paying attention to their driving. Something like this is long overdue."
Pictured: One of the many mobile billboards in CD2 | Photo from the Office of Councilmember Paul Krekorian
Constituent Case of the Week: Nina Bonuarte
VALLEY VILLAGE - Nina Bonuarte had stopped trying to fight City Hall, having given up hope that anyone could convince the courts a hefty fine leveled against the senior citizen was doled out erroneously.
Enter the office of Councilmember Paul Krekorian, who managed to lop off more than 97% of Mrs. Bonuarte's ticket, elating the Valley Village resident.
"I was very pleasantly surprised," she said.
On March 23, 2009, Mrs. Bonuarte arrived at the Westfield Topanga mall, set for a couple hours of shopping in the West Valley.
She parked her car, locked her door and went inside. Hours later, Mrs. Bonuarte returned to find a $340 ticket for parking her car in a handicap-only stall. Aghast, she rushed to open her door and found her handicap placard resting neatly on the floor, the sign having fallen off from her dashboard while she shopped.
Of limited mobility and living on fixed income, Mrs. Bonuarte complained to the courts that the ticket was a mistake. Besides, she said, even if she was inclined to pay the fine and put the mess behind her, she was not economically in a place to do so.
Delays set in and the fine skyrocketed to $1,051 with authorities asking for payment.
She did not know what to do next. Then, a tip that would ease her life measurably better and ease her troubles once and for all.
"Somebody told me to try my councilmember," Mrs. Bonuarte said. "I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. I called the councilmember's office in the Valley and spoke with [North Hollywood staff member] Joaquin [Macias]. Three to four weeks later I head back.
"I was always under the impression that it was very difficult to reach politicians once they were elected into office, that they have their own agenda," she continued. "I was really very happy because I honestly thought it didn't matter. I'm very happy when I see our politicians trying to help us."
Each week, the office of Councilmember Krekorian receives hundreds of calls, letters and correspondences from constituents in the city's second largest council district.
While it is exceedingly difficult to meet the needs pf each constituent, Krekorian's office said they have tried to make life easier for constituents by providing a wealth of information on their new website, including listings and maps of schools, parks, emergency services and more.
For more information, please visit cd2.lacity.org or call them in their North Hollywood (818) 755-7676; or Sunland-Tujunga office (818) 352-8563.
Krekorian to release iPhone Application
NBC News reports:
CITY HALL - If there's a pothole to be filled or graffiti in need of covering, iPhone users in Paul Krekorian's council district have an app for that. Krekorian, he of those Google-mapped street resurfacing projects, is launching a new application designed to help residents keep in touch with his office.
The Krekorian app was designed in-house -- and it's free.
"It will speed up the delivery of constituent services and create a new vehicle of communication to make government more transparent and open to our constituents,"Krekorian told ABC News.
Read the rest of the story here.
Paul Celebrates Local Milestone
LAKE VIEW TERRACE - On March 27, Councilmember Paul Krekorian joined more than 70 others in celebrating the 100th birthday of local hero Bert Bonnett.
The group kicked off the birthday with a horse ride in the San Gabriel Mountains before enjoying cake and bestowing Bonnett with a wealth of commendations from Paul, President Obama, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and others.
Photo: Bert Bonnett, wife Barri in the zebra stripes, flanked by Paul on the right and Senior Deputy Millie
Jones, from the office of Supervisor Mike Antonovich. | Photo by Steve Ford.