July 20, 2012

In this issue:

City flags at half-mast

Valley gathering

Century Plaza

Carmageddon II

City Hall lawn reopens

Neighborhood Councils

A community united for public safety

Saluting Tom Moxley

City of Los Angeles joins legal challenge to DOMA

Thank you, Lt. Governor!

Hoop dreams

Council rules

Contact Information

West LA Office
822 S. Robertson Blvd.
Suite 102
Los Angeles, CA 90035
(310) 289-0353

Valley Office
15760 Ventura Blvd.
Suite 1020
Encino, CA 91436
(818) 971-3088

City Hall
200 North Spring Street
Room 440
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 473-7005



Liberty Hill Foundation is offering a free downloadable 80-page resource guide to help L.A. City businesses become more sustainable. Go green while saving money.

Check it out!


On Wednesday, July 25, the Century City Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its Summer in the City Networking Fiesta from 5:30 - 8:00 pm at Pink Taco, 10250 Santa Monica Blvd., Century City.

Please click here for more information.


The Federal Aviation Administration will be hosting a Public Hearing on Helicopter Noise in Los Angeles on Monday, August 6, from 6:30pm - 8:30 pm at Millikan Middle School, Burrill Hall - 5041 Sunnyslope Ave., Sherman Oaks, 91403.

This public hearing is a critical tool for gathering community input and will be used to inform an FAA report on helicopter noise in LA.

Questions? Please call 818-994-7200.


National Night Out - Encino will be held on Tuesday, August 7th from 6-8pm at Encino Park, 16853 Ventura Blvd., Encino 91316 at the picnic tables behind the playgrounds.

NationalNightOut(NNO) is anightwhere all across America law enforcement and the communities they serve get together to send a message that we are united. United as a community and against crime. NationalNightOutis community policing at its best and about neighborhood unity, law enforcement promoting safety, and most importantly police and community partnerships. NationalNightOutis Neighborhood Watch at one of its best moments.

Gourmet Food Trucks - Ice Cream - Live Jazz Music - Balloons - Facepainting

For more information, please contact: Jeffrey.Ebenstein@lacity.org, 818-971-3088.


Please join the Department of Recreation and Parks along with Councilmember Paul Koretz for the dedication ceremony of the new improvements at Poinsettia Recreation Center.  The improvements include a new playground, upgraded two baseball diamonds, upgraded outdoor basketball courts, adult fitness equipment, a new indoor gym floor, and a new community room. The event will take place on August 7, 2012 at 5:30 pm.

Poinsettia Rec Center

Ribbon Cutting and National Night Out (two events at the same time)

Ribbon Cutting
5:30 p.m. - 6 p.m.

National Night Out
6 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.



Melrose Trading Post

Described as a cool, eclectic gem of a place to find treasures and rare goodies, the Melrose Trading Post is a great Sunday destination.  You can expect to find something to make you say "wow" every single time you visit.   Enjoy the food court in the beautifully landscaped upper quad.  Relax to the live jazz band's melodic vibes.  Treat yourself to a different kind of day. 
When: Every Sunday from 9am to 5pm. Rain or Shine.

Where: Located in the parking lot of Fairfax High School (Corner of Fairfax and Melrose Avenue)

Cost: $2

The Westwood Village Farmers' Market

When: Every Thursday from 12 -6pm.

Free Parking at the Broxton Avenue Structure.


Popular food trucks and shops open late as well as offer promotions.

When: First Thursday of every month

Where: Melrose Avenue between Ogden and Stanley


Get Water Quality Grades on the Go

Beachgoers can now check the latest water quality grades at 650+ West Coast beaches via Heal the Bay’s Beach Report Card mobile app for the iPhone or Android, at www.beachreportcard.org.

The new, free Beach Report Card app provides the only access anytime and anywhere to a comprehensive, weekly analysis of coastline water quality.  The mobile app delivers A through F grades, weather conditions and user tips throughout beach locations in California, Oregon and Washingtonto swimmers, surfers and anyone who loves going in the ocean water.

In addition to discovering which beaches are safe or unsafe, beachgoers can look up and save their favorite local beaches, as well as learn details on beach closures.

Know before you go!


LAFCU Announces New Shop LA City Visa® Card with Triple Rewards

Shop LA City, in partnership with Los Angeles Federal Credit Union (LAFCU), is proud to announce the new Shop LA City Visa Platinum Plus credit card. The card, available to all Southern California residents, is the first of its kind to offer triple reward points for all purchases at merchants in the city of Los Angeles and single rewards points in other cities.* The rewards can be redeemed for travel, merchandise or gift cards through CURewards, or used for consumer loan rate discounts at LAFCU.**

The card also has a six-month 0% introductory rate (for new LAFCU credit card holders) then variable rates as low as 9.90% APR.*** This is almost 50% lower than the average rewards card rate of 17.27% APR**** and could save thousands of dollars in interest charges. Cardholders can save even more by transferring their higher-rate balances from other cards to their new Shop LA City Visa.

Besides earning triple rewards, cardholders will also help the city of Los Angeles.  For every $10 in sales tax paid in the city, the city earns one dollar to help support services like police, fire, libraries and parks.

Applying for the new Shop LA City Triple Rewards card is quick and easy at www.LAFCU.org or by calling (877) MY LAFCU (695-2328).  The website also has details about this exciting new card, and LAFCU’s range of beneficial, low-rate or free financial products and services.



LAX Facebook Page Increases to More Than 28,300 Fans

Recent improvements to the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Facebook page increased the numbers of its fans and followers.  The Los Angeles International Airport Facebook fan page, which first launched in April 2009, now has more than 28,300 fans.

LAX operated two Facebook fan pages under two accounts – one under “Governmental” and the other under “Places”.  Fans did not have the option to “check-in” under the governmental fan page.  Now with one LAX primary page, under a new URL: www.facebook/LAInternationalAirport.com, fans and followers can now check-in, receive up-to-the-minute information on airport conditions, videos, photos, flight delay, travel-related news, and much more.

LAX’s social media websites are designed to provide real time announcements including airline fare deals, new passenger services and amenities; flight status, current airport conditions, and developments on various modernization projects.  LAX’s Twitter site at http://www.twitter.com/LAX_Official increased to more than 7,100 fans since its launch in February 2009.  LAX’s YouTube, the newest edition social media site, at http://www.youtube.com/LAXairport1 is a channel that provides videos of recent events, construction, and airline news, which reached more than 12,400 video views since its launch last year.


Jewish Family Service is offering an educational workshop / support group for family members impacted by domestic violence. For more information, please call Vivian Engle, M.A. at 818-789-1293 x1215.


Call 3-9-9 for Non-Emergency Roadside Assistance on the Highway...

If your car breaks down on the freeway and there is no Call Box in sight, you can use your cellphone to get non-emergency roadside assistance quickly and easily by calling 3-9-9. You can also use this to report obstacles or hazards in the road, (but wait until you have stopped driving to call!). Calls to 3-9-9 are connected to Call Box operators who can Metro Freeway Service Patrol (FSP) tow trucks to your location.  If you are covered by AAA, the dispatcher can patch your call straight through to AAA. FSP help is free of charge, and is funded by an additional $1 on every Vehicle Licenses Fee in the State of California. In emergencies, you should still always call 9-1-1.


With the resumption of seasonal rain, the Los Angeles Fire Department is encouraging local residents to take the precautions necessary to protect themselves from injury and their property from storm damage. When rainstorms impact the Los Angeles area, flood control channels, rivers, and arroyos can quickly fill with fast-moving water, creating a potentially life-threatening danger to anyone who gets caught or swept away. It is against the law to be inside a flood control channel in Los Angeles, regardless of the weather.
We urge you to visit the EDIS website and listen to NOAA Weather Radio or local radio and television stations for the latest weather or emergency information.


The Los Angeles Fire Department is pleased to unveil LAFDmobile, a free application for iPhone and Android smartphones. For more information, please click HERE.


For the latest construction notices and closures along the I-405, please visit Metro HERE.


For more information on the Asian citrus psyllid and how it can affect California citrus, please click HERE.


Shopping within the City limits of Los Angeles not only supports local businesses, it also supports City services, its neighborhoods and the well-being of all Los Angeles residents. For every $10 you spend on taxes - $1 goes back to the General Fund! Whether shopping along Melrose or grabbing some food in Encino, every dollar we spend within the city is an investment to the future of Los Angeles. Details HERE.


iWATCH is a community awareness program created to educate the public about behaviors and activities that may have a connection to terrorism. It is a partnership between your community and the Los Angeles Police Department. For more information, please click the logo above.

Send us your news and events!
If you or your community group have any upcoming events that you would like to see featured in our next newsletter or on my website, please e-mail me at paul.koretz@lacity.org.

Please feel free to send this newsletter along to your friends and neighbors and tell them to visit the CD 5 website at http://cd5.lacity.org to sign up for this newsletter. 


City flags at half-mast

Mayor Villaraigosa has ordered all City flags to be flown at half-staff until July 25, 2012, as a mark of respect and in honor of the victims of the Aurora, Colorado shooting incident.

The Mayor said, "on behalf of the residents of Los Angeles, I want to extend our thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims and the residents of Aurora."

Councilmember Koretz and his staff join in offering their personal prayers and condolences to the many whose lives have been shattered.  This is a time of much sorrow and pain, of turmoil caused by events far away, and so the people of this city mourn with others for the human costs of this horrific violence, and hope for healing for all who have suffered wounds and loss. 

Valley gathering

Left to right: Councilmembers Paul Koretz, Paul Krekorian, Tom LaBonge

The redistricting that happens every ten years for the City of Los Angeles took effect on July 1. Throughout Los Angeles, some residents and neighborhoods now have different City Council representation than before, due to the redrawn City Council district boundaries.  Leading up to the switch, Council offices worked hard to ensure that a smooth transition would be achieved for communities about to make the change.  At this particular meeting, Councilmembers Koretz, Krekorian and LaBonge, joined by staffmembers, readied for changes in representation for many Sherman Oaks and North Hollywood residents. 

Century Plaza

The iconic Century Plaza Hotel

Wednesday, July 18, 2012 marked a major milestone in the preservation and restoration of the iconic Century Plaza Hotel. In a packed City Hall hearing room, speaker after speaker came to the microphone to praise the consensus project that will restore the hotel and add two residential towers in the underutilized rear of the property.
Wednesday’s hearing was the first step in approving the project that will next be reviewed by the City Planning Commission and ultimately the City Council. The project is the result of three years of collaboration and compromise between community leaders, preservationists, the development team and the Council Office.
In 2009, developer Next Century Associates proposed demolishing the historic hotel to make way for new development. Preservations and neighborhood activists rallied to protect the hotel, with Councilman Koretz declaring that the hotel would be demolished “over my dead body.” That confrontation actually led to collaboration, with the development team, preservationists and Council Office staff locking themselves in weekly meetings for months until a compromise could be reached. That however was only the beginning: the development team worked with area homeowners to ensure that the design of the new development and restoration of the hotel met community needs and avoided any major impacts on neighborhoods.
The consensus project includes a $12 million renovation to the existing hotel which will include 63 residential condominiums, 394 hotel rooms and related retail, spa and meeting facilities. Two towers will rise in the rear of the site with up to 324 residential condominiums as well as retail and amenity uses. The ground-level open space will become public and new opportunities for pedestrian access and enjoyment will be complemented with lush landscaping and public art.
Councilmember Koretz explains that “taking a stand for preservation was the easy part, I am extremely proud of my three year collaboration with all the stakeholders to make this project a reality. Countless individuals worked on this effort but I especially want to thank Jan Reichmann, Mike Eveloff and Bruce Spector and their homeowners associations as well as Michael Rosenthal from the development team and Linda Dishman from the Los Angeles Conservancy: without all the hours these individual put in we would not have such a great project today.” The full approval process is expected to take another six months.  Once construction starts (assuming approval is granted), the project will represent the largest private-sector investment in Council District 5 since the recession and will create over 5,000 desperately needed construction jobs as well as 500 net new permanent jobs.

Carmageddon II

It's time to mark your calendars – Carmageddon II, the huge I-405 Freeway Closure, is now scheduled for September 29-30, 2012. By planning as carefully as we did for Carmageddon I, and by knowing to stay away from the area in automobiles and minimizing the use of cars in general during that weekend, we may enjoy the remarkable success that was last year's closure, when the work got done speedily and with significant cost savings, and the public avoided the huge traffic snarls that had been much feared.  Here is the press release that has been sent out by Metro regarding Carmageddon II:

“Carmageddon II” I-405 Freeway Closure Now Scheduled for September. 29-30, 2012

LOS ANGELES (July 19, 2012): The second 10-mile closure of both directions of the I-405  over the Sepulveda Pass, popularly known as “Carmageddon,” has now been scheduled for Sept. 29-30, 2012 when contractors will demolish the remaining side of the Mulholland Bridge.  Motorists throughout the State of California are advised to “Plan Ahead, Avoid the Area, or Eat, Shop and Play Locally” to avoid generating extreme auto congestion in the project area and throughout the greater Los Angeles region.  

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), Metrolink, Los Angeles Police Department, California Highway Patrol, Los Angeles Department of Transportation and Los Angeles Fire Department are giving the public advance notice to enable everyone to make all necessary advance travel arrangements to avoid the closure area that weekend.
The I-405 is the nation’s busiest freeway and will be closed in both directions for 53 consecutive hours between the I-10 and U.S. 101.  Half a million motorists drive this portion of the I-405 over a typical weekend. 

 “This closure will surely impact the nearly 250,000 motorists from all over the county that travel the Sepulveda Pass each day on the weekend,” said Metro Board Chair and L.A. County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich.  “Law enforcement, transportation and emergency response agencies strongly advise that county residents make plans in advance to use an alternate route or transit.”
On Friday, September 28, ramps along the 10-mile closure area will begin to be shut down as early as 7 p.m., and closure of individual freeway lanes will begin at 10 p.m. to ensure full freeway closure by midnight. The closure is scheduled to continue until 5 a.m. Monday morning, Oct. 1. Ramps and connectors will be reopened by 6 a.m.  During this closure, the Mulholland Bridge, I-405 freeway and access ramps will be closed.
As with the previous I-405 closure, Sepulveda Boulevard is intended as an alternate route for local resident access only. Sepulveda Boulevard does not have the capacity to accommodate both local and diverted freeway traffic. Motorists should instead use alternate regional freeway routes to completely bypass the area.  These include the 5, 15, 23, 55, 57, 101, 118, 126, 210, 605 and 710 freeways.

“Last year, we proved that Angelenos far and wide could rise to the occasion and cooperate with authorities to turn Carmageddon into ‘Carmaheaven’ free of apocalyptic traffic congestion,” said Antonio Villaraigosa, L.A. City Mayor and Metro Board Member.  “It was truly one of L.A.’s finest moments.  We are again calling on the public to do its civic duty.  Do not become complacent.  Rather, let’s join together to enjoy another car-light or car-free weekend with family and friends.  Let’s all help get this critical job done safely and without incident.”
The potential for gridlock is markedly greater this time due to several critically important factors. First, public apathy increases the risk following an aggressive internationally publicized outreach campaign warning of extreme road and freeway congestion that was successfully averted last year. More motorists may now be tempted to rejoin local roads and freeways, which has the potential to create the very traffic congestion and multi-hour delays transportation and law enforcement officials have warned about.
Secondly, the contractor’s early completion of demolition work ended the first freeway closure 17 hours earlier than previously scheduled.  This time, the contractor is unlikely to complete the work early because it has more demolition work to perform within the same 53-hour period.  Two sets of bridge columns, rather than one the previous year, must now be removed.  Demolition work will also be more complicated due to the presence of inactive utility lines not present in the previous bridge demolition work.

Lastly, the serious risk factors to the regional road and freeway system have not changed from last year.  The I-405 is still the nation’s busiest freeway. The demolition work is still being performed in a canyon with no immediate, effective north/south alternatives.  The closure area still connects with I-10 and U.S. 101, both major interstate freeways with their own capacity limitations.  There is still limited elasticity in the overall regional freeway system to accommodate diverted I-405 freeway traffic. 

“During Carmageddon I, drivers proved the skeptics wrong. They heard our warnings and stayed off the roads, creating a traffic breather not seen since the free-flowing freeways of the 1984 Olympics,” said L.A. County Supervisor and Metro Board Member Zev Yaroslavsky. “I have every confidence they'll rise to the occasion again. So give your stress a rest. Get out of your cars. Take a walk, plant a garden, have a barbeque with neighbors. Let's make this another CarmageddonSchmarmegeddon experience for us all.”

Motorists who must travel during this weekend are advised to plan ahead, monitor real-time traffic conditions prior to beginning their trips, and follow alternate routes that are provided. Motorists will be informed of the closure in advance by Caltrans-operated freeway message signs with coverage extending into neighboring counties and other metropolitan regions throughout the state.
Public transportation options are available such as the Metro Rail service within L.A. County and Metrolink servicing the five county Southern California region.
The demolition and reconstruction of the Mulholland Bridge is required to widen the freeway as part of the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project.  The $1 billion, 10-mile northbound carpool lane construction project is a joint effort between Metro and Caltrans, and is being constructed by
Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. It is scheduled for completion in 2013. 
For latest updates visit the project web site at www.metro.net/405 or follow the project on twitter: twitter.com/I_405 and Facebook at facebook.com/405project.

City Hall lawn reopens

Native plants and succulents abound in the newly landscaped front lawn at City Hall

The park space that fronts City Hall to 1st Street has reopened, after being closed off for months.  The area required significant cleanup and repair following the period of time associated with Occupy L.A.'s presence there.  The good news is that about half the grass in the park area has been replaced with drought-tolerant plants that better reflects the City's growing commitment to sustainability. The park's transformation was funded from various sources, including Proposition 84 state water bond dollars and Quimby funds.  New rules will govern use of the park space and the hours in which it will be open to the public (5 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.).

A crowd gathers at the reopening of the front lawn on 1st Street

Neighborhood Councils

Councilmember Koretz updates members of the Bel Air-Beverly Crest Neighborhood Council regarding city and council district issues

Councilmember Koretz greatly values the activism, community leadership, insights and input provided by neighborhood councils.  He and his staff eagerly attend many NC meetings, and so he was delighted and honored to visit the Bel Air-Beverly Crest NC recently in order to present an update on city and council district issues, hear comments and answer questions.

A reminder: Neighborhood Councils and other community groups are always welcome to send in potential calendar items and suggested stories for coverage in the Hi 5 Newsletter (email to paul.koretz@lacity.org).

A community united for public safety

LAPD officers engaging with members of the Fairfax and Melrose community during a safety walk

On June 26, members of the Fairfax and Melrose community walked the neighborhood surrounding Pan Pacific Park with police officers and Captain Eric Davis from LAPD Wilshire Division.  The walks have been held at least once a year, for the past three years.  The goal is to get people out in the community with the officers that protect their neighborhoods.  The walk was organized by the Mid City West Community Council, and was led by Captain Eric Davis and Liz Sterbenz, Chair of the Mid City West Community Council's Public Safety Committee.  The residents and officers started at Pan Pacific Park and walked east on Beverly Blvd and into the residential neighborhood north and south of Beverly Blvd.  For the LAPD, thefts and burglaries are the biggest crime problems in the Melrose and Fairfax community.  Thanks for all who attended and we look forward to next year.

Saluting Tom Moxley

Tom Moxley joined by family and friends at City Hall including Congresswomen Janice Hahn and Councilmember Koretz

When we look at the landscape of this city, most of us don't know who built the buildings and bridges, but it was people like Tom Moxley, who was recently honored in City Hall for his longstanding service with Ironworkers Local 433.  
Born in Anchorage, Alaska, Tom Moxley grew up in Long Beach, California, but because his father was an ironworker, the family moved to where the jobs were, whether in Las Vegas, Lompoc, Victorville or Phoenix, but always returning to Southern California. Tom and a brother followed in their father's footsteps and became iron workers, and Tom helped build such important Los Angeles structures as the Security Pacific Bank Building, the Downtown YMCA, the Webush Building (three of his fellow workers lost their lives during construction of that project), and various L.A. Port projects and bridges, including the seismic retrofit of the Vincent Thomas Bridge, on which his father had worked on when it was built.

Over the years, Tom became known for his championing of such essential quality of life issues and causes as workplace safety, and for helping to shepherd key apprenticeship programs that have led to jobs and successful careers for many young people.

Revered by his fellow workers, Tom was elected to various Ironworkers 433 posts, including Sergeant at Arms, Trustee, Executive Board Member, Recording Secretary and Vice President. In June of 2000, Tom was elected as Business Agent, a post he held during the past 12 years.   During that time, he also served as President of the Los Angeles/Orange County Building and Construction Trades Council, Vice President of the Southern California Maritime Trades Council, Delegate to the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor and Orange County Federation of Labor, Member of South County Labor, and Delegate to the Riverside/San Bernardino Building and Construction Trades Council.   At a time of local, regional, national and global economic crisis, Tom played a huge part in protecting and improving the quality of life of California and Californians. 

During the ceremony honoring Moxley, various councilmembers described him as being fiercely dedicated, tough but gracious, principled and compassionate, and said that though they were sometimes on the opposite side from him on an issue, they respected his tenacity and always appreciated his honesty and directness. He now gets to enjoy retirement with his wife, Donna, to whom he has been married for nearly forty years – they were high school sweethearts – and their children and grandchildren. 

City of Los Angeles joins legal challenge to DOMA

The City of Los Angeles swiftly responded to a request from the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund to join in its amicus brief seeking the invalidation of the Defense Against Marriage Act (DOMA).  As the deadline for filing the brief approached, a Lamda representative contacted the 5th District Council Office with what amounted to a last-minute request to the City.  Councilmember Koretz immediately sought and quickly received the authorization of the City Attorney's Office, thereby allowing the City of Los Angeles to join this litigation, based on prior positions taken by the Council and Mayor endorsing federal legislation to overturn DOMA.

Founded in 1973, Lamda is the oldest and largest national legal organization whose mission is to safeguard and advance the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV, through impact litigation, education and policy work.  In the case in question, Lambda Legal represents Karen Golinski, a federal court employee who sought to enroll her spouse, Amy Cunninghis, in the employee health plan. In February, a federal district court ruled for Golinski and found Section 3 of DOMA (which prohibits federal recognition of the marriages of same-sex couples) unconstitutional. Last week, the Justice Department asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the case.

Some 132 members of Congress – plus dozens of companies, unions, bar associations, legal scholars and historians – have signed on to friend-of-the-court briefs urging the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to find DOMA unconstitutional. Signatories include the City of Los Angeles, Microsoft, Google, CBS, the Gap, the State of California, the Anti-Defamation League, the American Psychological Association and other health care professional organizations, as well as scores of religious, civic and public interest groups.

Thank you, Lt. Governor!

Our thanks go to Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom for joining Councilmember Koretz and others who are greatly concerned about the threatened sale by UCLA of the Hannah Carter Japanese Garden.

Back in 1964, Edward Carter bequested a wonderful Bel Air property to UCLA. Carter had been a University of California Regent for 36 years, even serving for a time as its Chair.  The property that he donated included a lovely hillside garden constructed between 1959 and 1961, modeled on gardens in Kyoto and designed by famed Japanese garden designer Nagao Sakurai.  Named after Carter's wife, Hannah, the garden has charmed countless visitors over the decades, as surely was the intent of Edward Carter.  Indeed, Mr. Carter made clear that the house could eventually be sold, if necessary, in order to provide an endowment for the garden – an understanding which the university reaffirmed in 1999.  But now, UCLA is seeking to sell the entire property, which it says involves annual operating costs of nearly $140,000, in order to rake in more than $4 million.  Carter's heirs have filed suit to stop such a sale.

On July 3, Lt. Governor Newsom, who is also a Regent of the University of California, wrote UCLA Chancellor Gene Block about his "apprehension" over the possible sale of the property, especially if such a sale is transacted "without a stipulation to preserve the garden":  "As the University faces difficult fiscal times, it is important to protect those who support our mission. It is my hope that you will look toward solutions that not only bring more revenue to the University, but also protect the intentions of the donor. I believe that preserving the Hannah Carter Japanese Garden will prove to be a long-term benefit to the University and the State. With this in mind, I hope that you will consider alternative ways to raise funds for the University while preserving public access and use of the Hannah Carter Japanese Garden."

Hoop dreams

Councilmembers Koretz and Krekorian honor the Holy Martyrs Ferrahian Armenian High School's Boys Basketball team in City Council

On Friday, June 29, Councilmembers Paul Koretz and Paul Krekorian joined together to honor the Holy Martyrs Ferrahian Armenian High School.  Back in March, the Encino-based school won the 2012 CIF Southern Section Division 5A Boys Basketball Championship in a thrilling game in which the team prevailed in overtime by besting the favored Providence Pioneers by a score of 65-62, with player after player rising to the occasion in clutch situations.  Though the game was played in Anaheim, far from Encino and the 5th Council District, hundreds of fans made the trip and rooted their team on, and all the players said that made a big difference.   Similarly, many parents and students came to support the team at the June 29 City Hall ceremony.

Councilmember Koretz told the team, "Without a doubt, you have brought great pride to your school, your parents and family, the Armenian community and Encino.  I applaud your gallant play, and of course I compliment your head coach, your athletic director and all the teachers, staff and administration who have helped along the way.  You played your hearts out, and had a tremendous season and played a phenomenal title game, full of individual accomplishment, but what is most important is that you displayed extraordinary and selfless teamwork.  In so doing, you have inspired others to show the same kind of teamwork in all areas of life. For all those reasons, we congratulate you on your victory and thank you for the thrills and pride you have given us."

Council rules

City Council meetings are open to the public, but the procedures of decision-making can seem baffling.  To make things more easily understandable, every Council meeting's agenda includes a page describing many of the fundamental rules used at these meetings. Such information can be invaluable for any observer who is trying to figure out the goings-on.  In case you are curious, here is that page of rules:


AGENDAS - The City Council meets Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday at 10:00. The agendas for City Council meetings contain a brief general description of those items to be considered at the meetings. Council Agendas are available in the Office of the City Clerk, Council and Public Services Division, Room 395, City Hall, 200 North Spring Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012, and on the City’s World Wide Web Home Page site on the internet at http://www.lacity.org/; click on “Council Calendar."

Ten (10) members of the Council constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The Council may consider an item not listed on the Council Agenda only if it is determined by a two-thirds (10) vote that the need for action arose after the posting of an Agenda. Some items on the Agenda may be approved without any discussion, however, any item may be Called ‘special” by a Councilmember. If an item is called “special” it will be “held” until the remainder of the items on the Council agenda has been acted on by the Council. An item may also be called “special” if a member of the public has requested to speak on the item and a public hearing has not previously been held on the matter.

The City Clerk will announce the items to be considered by the Council, however items will be grouped. For example, all items for which required public hearings have not previously been held are listed in one section on the printed Agenda. The Council President will ask if any Councilmember or member or the public Wishes to speak on one or more of these items. lf anyone Wishes to speak on an item, it will be called “special.” The remaining items in this section will be voted on by Council with one roll call vote.

PUBLIC INPUT AT CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS - An opportunity for the public to address the Council on agenda items for which public hearings have not been provided will be provided before or during consideration of the item. Members of the public who wish to speak on any item are requested Ito complete a speaker Card for each item they wish to address, and present the Completed Card(s) to the Sergeant­At­Arms. Speaker cards are available at the back of the Council Chamber.

The Council will also provide an opportunity for the public to speak on public interest items for a cumulative total of up to fifteen (15) minutes. Testimony shall be limited in content to matters which are within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Council. The City Council may not take any action on matters discussed during the public testimony period.

COUNCIL DISCUSSION AND TIME LIMITS ¬ – Councilmembers requesting to address the Council will be recognized by the Council President in the order requested. For any item, the Chairperson of the Committee, or the maker of the original motion, or the member calling a matter “special” shall have up to six (6) minutes to discuss the item. AII other Councilmembers may speak up to three (3) minutes each on the matter. After ail members desiring to Speak on a question have had an opportunity to be heard once, the time for each Member desiring to speak again shall be limited to a maximum of three (3) minutes.

A motion calling the “previous question” may be introduced by any member during a Council debate. If adopted, this motion will terminate debate on a matter and the Chair will instruct the Clerk to call the roll on the matter.

VOTING AND DISPOSITION OF ITEMS – Most items require a majority vote of the entire membership of Council (8 members). Items which have not been discussed in a Council Committee and have been placed directly on the Council Agenda will require 10 votes to consider. Once considered, these items will normally require eight (8) affirmative votes to be adopted. Ordinances require a unanimous vote (at least 12 members must be present) in order to be adopted on first Consideration. If an ordinance does not receive necessary unanimous vote, it is laid over one calendar week. The votes required for approve on second Consideration very end depend upon the type of ordinance, but a typical ordinance requires eight (8) affirmative votes upon second consideration.

When debate on an item is completed, the Chair will instruct the Clerk to “Call the roll.” Every member present must vote for or against each item; abstentions are not permitted. The Clerk will announce the votes on each item. Any member of Council may move to “reconsider" any vote on any item on the agenda, except to adjourn, suspend the Rules, or where an intervening event has deprived the Council of jurisdiction, providing that said member originally voted on the prevailing side of the item. The motion to "reconsider" shall only be in order once during the meeting, and once during the next regular meeting. The member requesting reconsideration shall identify for all members present the Agenda number, Council file number and subject matter previously voted upon, A motion to reconsider is not debatable and shall require an affirmative vote of eight members of the Council.

When the Council has failed by sufficient votes to approve or reject an item, and has not lost jurisdiction over the matter, or has not caused it to be Continued beyond the next regular meeting, the issue is again placed on the next agenda for the following meeting for the purpose of allowing the Council to again vote on the matter.

The City Council rules provide that all items adopted by the Council will not be presented to the Mayor, or other designated officer by the City Clerk until the adjournment of the regular Council meeting following the date of the Council action. A motion to send an item “forthwith" it adopted by ten (10) votes, suspends these rules and requires the City Clerk to forward the matter to the Mayor, or other officer, without delay.

RULE 16 MOTIONS – Council Rule No. 16, in part, allows a member to send an item directly to the Council without it having to go to a Council Committee first, by giving the City Clerk a motion (seconded by an additional member) during a Council session to be placed on the next regular available Council Agenda.

This message was sent to  by:

Los Angeles Councilmember Paul Koretz
200 N. Spring Street, Rm. 440
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 473-7005