August 21, 2012

In this issue:

The unsinkable Sandy Brown – CD5's very own Pioneer Woman



Parking Requirements

Foreshadowing of Carmaggedon 2?  Hopefully, not!

Town Hall On Gun Violence

National Preparedness Month

Rusty Hicks – serving his country

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



The Women's Business Council of the Century City Chamber of Commerce will be celebrating the progress of women in the civic and business sectors at its first-ever Women's Summit. To be held on Thursday, August 23rd, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Creative Artists Agency's Ray Kurtzman Theater (2000 Avenue of the Stars, Los Angeles CA 90067), this event will feature a forum where accomplished women share the strategies that helped them be successful.

Among the speakers are Anita DeFrantz, an American Olympic bronze medalist (rowing) and member of the International Olympic Committee; Madeline Di Nonno, Executive Director for the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media; and Roz Wyman, a California political figure who was the youngest person ever elected to the Los Angeles City Council and the second woman to serve.

The Women's Summit is open to the public. Tickets are $75 for Century City Chamber of Commerce Members and $90 for Non-Members. Registration is required to attend, and space is limited. To register, visit and click "Chamber Events" or call 310-553-2222


LAPD West Valley Division along with Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson, will host Movie in the Park on Thursday, August 30th at 6:00pm at Randall Simmons Park, located at Vanowen Street and Wilbur.

"The Simpsons Movie" will be viewed at sunset, all are welcome to join. This event will also feature games and prizes!


The Interfaith Communities United for Justice & Peace will present The George Regas Courageous Peacemaker Award to the Reverend James Lawson on Saturday, September 9th, at 7:30pm at

Holman United Methodist Church, 3320 W. Adams Blvd., 90018.

For more information please contact: or call 213.748.1643 or visit


On Saturday, September 15th, the West Los Angeles Community Police Station - Youth Programs will hold WESTFEST LA, LA's Premier Food & Beverage Festival, from 4:00pm - 9:30pm.

Join over 40 chefs from fine dining restaurants at Century Park, 2049 Century Park East, Century City, 90067.

Over 40 wine, spirit and beer purveyors. Valet parking and cabanas available.

For tickets and more information, please contact:

Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray  310.444.0739

Jackie Koci


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!


Coyote Alert!

Living safely with the Wildlife that shares our City

Coyotes are wild animals and can pose a risk to people and pets. The goal of Los Angeles Animal Services is to educate the public fostering a relationship of mutual respect between wildlife and the community so we can live together safely.

Here are a few guidelines for how to have a safe community for you and for the coyotes:

-Do not approach or feed wild animals, including coyotes. It is unsafe and a violation of the law. Never leave small children and pets unattended outdoors even if your yard is fenced.

-Remove pet food dishes when your pet has finished eating and do not leave food outside. Pick ripe fruit and clean rotten produce off the ground.

-Walk your dog on a leash at all times, not only is it the law, but it will keep your pet safe. Do not allow your dog to interact or “play” with a coyote.

-When you are walking your dog in areas known to have coyotes, you can carry a loud whistle of even an umbrella that you can open and close rapidly to scare them away. Unlike the approach with an aggressive dog, you can raise your arms above your head and stomp your feet while shouting at the coyote to scare them away.

-Put all trash bags inside trashcans and keep all outdoor trashcan lids securely fastened on the containers. Ammonia or pepper sprinkled in the trash may also discourage a scavenging coyote. Keep your property well lit at night especially when you go out with your dog for the last potty break before bed.

-Trim hedges from the bottom and keep brush cleared to limit hiding places for coyotes.

-Close off crawl spaces under porches, decks and sheds. Coyotes use such areas for resting and raising young.

Share this information with your neighbors to keep your neighborhood safe. If you belong to a neighborhood association, call Los Angeles Animal Services to schedule an educational presentation for your next meeting.

If you have coyotes near your home, please call (888) 452-7381 for non-lethal assistance.

The Los Angeles Animal Services Department has a Wildlife Expert and several very knowledgeable speakers. You can arrange for them to attend Neighborhood Council or other neighborhood meetings to talk about wildlife and to answer questions about wildlife.

Please click here for more information.



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

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 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, 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 increased to more than 7,100 fans since its launch in February 2009.  LAX’s YouTube, the newest edition social media site, at 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.


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

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

The unsinkable Sandy Brown – CD5’s very own Pioneer Woman

Sandy Brown, Council District 5's 2012 Pioneer Woman, and Councilmember Paul Koretz

Every year, the City’s Commission on the Status of Women honors women from all around the City who have been important leaders in a variety of ways – civic activism, commerce, education, law enforcement and other fields.  These 15 Pioneers – one from each Council District – are role models who remind us of the contributions that women have made to our City.
This year, Councilmember Koretz was proud to nominate one of CD 5’s most accomplished civic leaders, male or female – Westwood’s own Sandy Brown. A founder of the Friends of Westwood and the longtime president of the Holmby Westwood Property Owners Association, Sandy has been fighting for her beloved Westwood for decades.  Sandy would be the first to say it is not always easy being on the other side of the table from her. Just ask any developer (or elected official or planning department employee or ….) who has worked in Westwood.  But we all enjoy a more livable community because of her activism.

Sandy Brown with husband Jerry Brown, Westwood Neighborhood Council President
Amazingly but predictably, even while she was in City Hall being honored, Sandy was busy phoning various City Hall offices in order to arrange same-day meetings where she could argue causes for the sake of her community. Now that's an activist!

As she begins her own diamond jubilee year, CD 5 says thanks and congratulations to our own Pioneer, Sandy Brown.


Councilmember Koretz addressed attendees of VICA's annual officeholder luncheon on the importance of balancing business needs with environmental awareness

The Valley Industry and Commerce Association – VICA – is crucial to the economic well-being of the San Fernando Valley and its communities, businesses and residents.  VICA performs many noble services for its members and the region as a whole, including by holding informative events that provide key insights and enable beneficial networking. 

One of the most fun and unique events held by VICA is the annual officeholder lunch in which all the elected officials in the region are asked one question apiece and given 90 seconds to respond.  Each question is tailored for the given elected official and takes into account the person's past experience and how it might relate to business and commerce issues and interests.  The question asked of Councilmember Koretz at this year’s lunch regarded how to best balance business needs with environmental awareness and practices – the Councilmember answered (in some detail) that there are many green options for businesses, so that businesses shouldn't have to be negatively impacted if they want to be environmentally conscious, and that finding a balanced approach is a good thing.  This year's lunch was, as always, a delight, and was a tremendous opportunity for VICA members and the public at large to meet and find out more about their elected officials. 


On August 14th, Councilmember Koretz joined Department of Cultural Affairs General Manager Olga Garay-English at the Hammer Museum in Westwood (10899 Wilshire Blvd.) for a panel discussion on nourishing Los Angeles’ creative economy.

One in eight jobs in the Southland comes from the creative economy, and might be anything from motion picture production to web-based game design, or might stem from a museum exhibition and related tourism. The sector not only creates great-paying and fun jobs for Angelinos, it has a multiplier effect of creating over $201 billion in economic activity in the greater Los Angeles area each year, according to the OTIS College of Art & Design's Report on the Creative Economy of the Los Angeles region.
Councilmember Koretz addressed the crowd of entertainment, philanthropy, government, tech, fashion and academic leaders, asking them to become more involved in government decision-making and to promote art not only for its economic sake but for art’s sake. He decried the cutbacks that have devastated the arts and music programs in our nation's schools.  The Councilmember explained that “a culture that values the arts ultimately values peace, compassion, expression and knowledge.” 

The current exhibit at the Hammer explores all of those concepts.  The show, entitled “Made in LA” features 60 local Los Angeles artists and elevates their work for greater recognition, reflection and economic success.  The show closes September 2 and makes a great complement to a day of shopping, dining and relaxing in Westwood Village.  As Councilmember Koretz also noted, the Hammer has been getting remarkable accolades in the media and the art world because of its stellar programming, so a visit there is always a good thing for anyone who loves culture and the arts. 

Parking Requirements

Earlier this week, Councilmember Koretz cast the lone vote against the City’s proposed Modified Parking Requirements Districts ordinance. The ordinance does not change any parking requirements in the City today but would allow a City Councilmember, property owner, community or developer to change parking requirements in a set district in the future. Parking requirements have always been a hot topic of discussion in Los Angeles, but that discussion has truly reached a fever-pitch as new transit systems come online and developers attempt to avoid the cost of providing parking.
The Councilmember explained that staff had done good work and responded to public concerns, for example banning parking changes within Specific Plan areas, but the overall ordinance remained premature. Parking challenges exist citywide and while new transit is essential and exciting it is yet to drastically change travel patterns or alleviate our already existing parking shortages.

Foreshadowing of Carmaggedon 2?  Hopefully, not!

A recent accident resulted in a calamitous traffic jam; hopefully this isn't a harbinger of what is to come from Carmageddon II

Last year, the 2011 weekend closure of part of the 405 was dubbed in advance "Carmageddon" only somewhat in jest. After all, no one really knew for sure what might happen when a heavily traveled stretch of freeway in the Sepulveda Pass was unavailable to motorists while construction work on major transportation improvements was being accomplished.  There were substantial fears that traffic would prove unprecedentedly catastrophic, if not truly of an "end-of-the-world" scale, if people didn't take the constant warnings and pleas of public officials seriously to "stay the hell away from the 405." 

The great news was that people listened, stayed away from the 405 and for the most part stayed out of their cars, shopped locally and did all the right things, so chaos and calamity were avoided and the work on the 405 was accomplished ahead of schedule. Now, officials are hoping and pleading once more for people to get ready to stay away from the 405, because round two – Carmageddon 2 – is approaching, starting Friday afternoon Sept 28, 2012 and lasting through that Sunday into Monday morning, and so we shall soon face one more weekend of risk.

On the recent evening of August 16th, the world got a portent, a taste, of what things could be like if the public gets too cavalier and decides to ignore all the requests and warnings. On that night, traffic on the 405 in the Sepulveda Pass was absolutely hellish because a big rig truck jacknifed at rush hour after a collision with a sedan – a nightmare crash for those most directly involved, of course, but a horrible mess for everyone else in the vicinity or impacted indirectly in the traffic madness that followed.  Traffic was tied up for miles while cleanup crews did yeoman work clearing up all the fuel that had spilled.  Much of the northbound side of the freeway in that area was closed from about 5:30pm until the six lanes were reopened at about 10:45pm.

Hopefully, this dire spectacle of traffic snarl was more of a warning and reminder than visionary prophecy regarding Carmageddon 2 and how we should all be prepared to steer clear of the 405.

Once again, here's some useful info provided by Metro about the upcoming Carmageddon 2 weekend:

As the second full closure of the I-405 freeway approaches, scheduled for September 29 through September 30, 2012, the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project wants to offer you tools for spreading the word. Below you will find links to Acrobat (.pdf) versions of documents advertising the upcoming closure. 

Each document includes the theme for the second full closure: “Plan Ahead, Avoid the Area, or Eat, Shop and Play Locally.”
The documents are small and should download quickly, click on the following links:
Your first line for information is the project website:, as well as the project’s social media sites: or

Town Hall On Gun Violence
On Tuesday, August 14, an estimated 150 people from the Miracle Mile, Fairfax, Beverly Grove, and Melrose areas attended a Town Hall on Gun Violence held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.  The event was organized and hosted by State Assemblymember Mike Feuer.  Guest speakers included City Councilmembers Paul Koretz and Tom LaBonge, Sheriff Lee Baca, and LAPD Assistant Chief Michel Moore.

Assemblymember Feuer organized the evening discussion as a response to recent gun violence in Colorado and Wisconsin.  A lot of new and important information was shared and diverse views were aired, with question and answer sessions after each guest spoke.  A great majority of those in attendance agreed that gun violence is an ongoing societal tragedy that must be addressed.

From left to right: Assemblymember Mike Feuer, Sheriff Lee Baca, LAPD Assistant Chief Michel Moore, Councilmember Koretz, Councilmember LaBonge

Much focus was given to the recent introduction of Assembly Joint Resolution 45, which calls on the President and Congress to reauthorize the Federal Assault Weapons Ban, which lapsed in 2004.  Assemblymember Feuer said that 750 people have been shot (350 of them killed) by assault weapons since the ban expired.  Sheriff Baca explained that many of these weapons sold here have come into the U.S. from Russia and China, and both he and Assistant Chief Moore questioned why civilians would have military grade weapons.  Councilmember Koretz pointed out that gun control laws are nothing new to this country – he cited a Massachusetts law dating back to 1692 and a Kentucky law from 1813 – and said he would join Assemblymember Feuer in supporting the resolution to ban the ready sale of assault rifles once again.

Thanks to Assemblymember Feuer and all who where there, for helping to shine a light on the serious and deadly problem of gun violence.

National Preparedness Month

The Los Angeles Fire Department and the City as a whole are always concerned about helping people to be prepared for emergencies.  September is National Preparedness Month, and here is some information that might be invaluable to you and your friends, family and community.

Sunday, September 2nd
Family Emergency Planning
10am to 11:30am
Cheviot Hills Recreation Center
2551 Motor Ave., Los Angeles 90064

How to make an evacuation plan; supplies you absolutely need for long term preparedness; and what to do during and after a disaster. This a must-attend day for anyone who wants to learn how to keep their family safe and together.

Sunday, September 9th
Damage Assessment and Reporting
10am to 12noon
Temple Beth Am
1039 S. La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles 90035

Learn how to assess the damage done in your neighborhood and report it using the appropriate procedures. This is necessary information for getting the proper help to you and your neighborhood.

Sunday, September 16th
Light Search and Rescue
10am to 12noon
Olympia Medical Center
5900 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles 90036

A life saving survey that covers sizing up the situation in a damaged home; searching for possible victims; safe techniques for removing injured neighbors and most importantly when and where NOT to conduct operations.

Sunday, September 23rd
Triage, Victim Handling and Medical Treatment
10am to 12noon
Park La Brea Activity Center
6200 West 3rd St. Los Angeles 90036

Learning to assess injuries and separating out the critically injured is one of the most important functions you can perform. In this final program you will learn triage, how to handle the injured and medical treatment until professionals arrive.

Rusty Hicks  serving his country

Councilmember Koretz, joined by City Controller Wendy Greuel, commend Rusty Hicks

On Friday, August 17, Councilmember Koretz attended a special goodbye party.   Rusty Hicks was the guest of honor:  Councilmember Koretz, joined by Controller Wendy Greuel, and Council President Herb Wesson, saluted him with a proclamation from the City. 
Rusty is certainly well-known in Californian governmental and political circles, for he is the Political Director of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor – an organization of over 300 local unions representing more than 800,000 working men and women in industries across Los Angeles. In years past he served as District Director for California State Senator Ted Lieu and Assemblymember Mike Gordon.  In 2008, he was California Political Director for Obama for America.
As part of the August 17th festivities, Rusty’s friends as well as his wife, Sandra, celebrated Rusty’s past efforts and accomplishments, but their main focus was on Rusty’s future in the year ahead.  He is a Lieutenant Junior Grade, Intelligence Officer, in the U.S. Navy Reserve, which he joined in October, 2006, and even as the party was taking place, Rusty was making his final preparations for departure in order to serve a year in Afghanistan for the sake of his nation, freedom, and the interests of peace.
Rusty Hicks offers a stirring, sterling example of how a hero to labor can be a hero to the entire country – and that the struggle for the workplace safety, economic well-being and human rights of working families, and courageously upholding the values embodied in the American flag, are so often one and the same.  Councilmember Koretz was proud to thank Rusty Hicks for his exemplary patriotism and his continued and brave national service, and offered him the City’s best wishes for the year to come and the years thereafter.

This message was sent to  by:

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