March 15, 2013

In this issue:

LA Marathon advisory

The Jewish Journal’s annual Mensch List

San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant

Coldwater Canyon Avenue alert!

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



What's next for the East San Fernando Valley Transit Corridor Study

The cities of Los Angeles and San Fernando are partnering with Metro to help identify north-south transit opportunities to improve local and 
regional connections, enhance access to jobs, education, cultural, recreational and other opportunities in the East San Fernando Valley corridor.

Public input is a crucial part of this project. Scoping Meetings will be held for community members to learn more about the study. Please click on the image below to view meeting dates and locations.


The Century City Chamber of Commerce presents Let's Get Physical Solutions to Shaping Up Your Life!

The event will be held on Wednesday, March 27th from 6:00-9:00 PM at Equinox Century City, 10220 Constellation Blvd., 90067.

- Hear from expert panelists about simple, effective ways to get your mind, body and your finances fit.
-Network with new friends and professional contacts
-Enjoy a Silent Auction
-Appetizers will be provided by Seasons Fresh Grill.

To register please visit or call 310.553.2222.


The ONEGeneration Senior Center is partnering with Neighborhood Councils in the Southwest San Fernando Valley, Heritage California, and the Los Angeles Jewish Home to present the 5th Annual Senior Symposium.

The event will be held on Saturday, April 20th from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm at ONEgeneration Senior Enrichment Center on 18255 Victory Blvd., Reseda, CA 91335.
To register please call 818-705-2345


The Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation presents Salute, Salud, Sante to the LAFD, a wine tasting fundraiser on Thursday, May 9th from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at an exclusive Los Angeles venue.

For ticket information please visit


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.

LA Marathon advisory

Councilmember Koretz and his staff would like to remind Council District 5 residents and community members of the annual ASICS LA Marathon taking place this Sunday morning, March 17th.  As in years past, the race route will cover a total of 26.2 miles, as thousands of marathon runners and spectators will line the iconic course stretching between Dodger Stadium to Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica.

LA Marathon race officials have posted a comprehensive list of street closures which can be found at this link. No freeways will be closed on Sunday; however some freeway ramps will be restricted, information on these closures can be viewed here.

The Councilmember encourages you to review the information below to allow you to plan ahead in regards to how the race may impact driving and parking in CD5.

- Streets closures will be in place between 4:45 am and 3:00 pm on race day.

-  Please adhere to all parking and tow away zone signs. Parking restriction signs along the course will be strictly enforced and clearly marked 72 hours before race day.

- Those who plan to attend the start (approx. 7:25 am) should keep in mind that the Golden State Gate via the 5 Freeway will be the only entrance to Dodger Stadium.

Street Closures in West Los Angeles: Santa Monica Blvd. will be closed from Wilshire Blvd. to Sawtelle Blvd. from 5:00 a.m. to 2:04 p.m. Sepulveda Blvd. will be closed from S. Santa Monica Blvd. to Wilshire Blvd. from 5:00 a.m. to 2:04 p.m. Ohio Avenue will be closed from Veteran Avenue to Sawtelle Blvd from 5:00 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Sawtelle Blvd. will be closed from Santa Monica Blvd. to Dowlen Drive from 5:00 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Dowlen Drive will be closed from Bonsall Avenue to Wadsworth Pl. from 5:00 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Bonsall Avenue will be closed from Dowlen Drive to Eisenhower Avenue from 5:00 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Eisenhower Avenue will be closed from Bonsall Avenue to Bringham Avenue from 5:00 a.m. to 2:20 p.m.

Street closures in Hollywood: Hollywood Blvd. will be closed from Hillhurst Avenue to La Brea Avenue from 4:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Orange Avenue will be closed from Hollywood Blvd. to Sunset Blvd. from 4:00 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Street closures in West Hollywood: Sunset Blvd. will be closed from Highland Drive to Doheny Drive from 5:00 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. San Vicente Blvd. will be closed from Sunset Blvd. to Melrose Avenue from 5:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Santa Monica Blvd. will be closed from La Cienega Blvd. to the Sierra Drive from 5:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Doheny Drive will be closed from Nemo Street to Wilshire Blvd. from 5:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

For more updated information please visit the LA Marathon website, or call (213) 542-3000.

The Jewish Journal’s annual Mensch List

From left to right: Jewish Journal Creative Director Dan Kacvinski, Executive Editor Susan Freudenheim, Councilmember Bill Rosendahl,
Editor-in-Chief/Publisher Rob Eshman, Councilmember Paul Koretz, Associate Editor Ryan Smith.

For the past seven years, the Jewish Journal has published an annual Mensch List.  Dictionary definitions say that a mensch (which is a Yiddish term) is a person of integrity and honor, possessing admirable characteristics such as fortitude and firmness of purpose.   A mensch radiates a fundamental decency, and is outstanding and worthy, and each year, the Jewish Journal identifies and salutes local mensches particularly worthy of celebration.
This past January, the Jewish Journal released the Mensch List 2012, which is why Councilmember Koretz was delighted to invite the Jewish Journal and its current honorees into City Hall to get civic recognition for their good deeds.
Among those on hand for the ceremony was Rob Eshman, the Jewish Journal’s Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, who came up with the idea of making such an alternative year-end list, specifically aimed at recognizing under-the-radar people who do good through amazing acts of kindness.  Others in City Hall representing the Jewish Journal and its parent company, Tribe Media Corp, were Executive Editor Susan Freudenheim, photographer Dan Kacvinski, and Associate Editor Ryan Smith.  (The president, David Suissa, and writer and editor Julie Gruenbaum Fax were unable to attend that day.)

The mensches honored in the City Hall ceremony were:
- Paulinda Schimmel Babbini, who is the founder and president of the Ovian Cancer Circle, a foundation she started in 2010 in memory of her daughter, Robin, who in 2006 lost her life after a heroic battle with that disease.  She had been diagnosed two years earlier at the age of 16.  The Circle, which includes 12 members, all mensches, has raised much awareness and more than $35,000 to fight ovarian cancer, and to help spare others in the process.
- Georgia Freedman-Harvey, who curates art exhibitions that promote healing, for example, working with hospitalized teens to create art and poetry so that their spirits might be uplifted. Ten years ago, she was a bone marrow donor for a stranger.  Georgia and her husband, Gary, led a fight for their son, Ezra, and other children with disabilities, to be fully included in their school district.  She founded One in a Million Kids, a support group for families with children with rare diseases. Next she created Come Walk in My Shoes, a one-day interactive fair for schoolchildren, parents and teachers to learn about disabilities. After that, it was Kacie’s Kloset, which fills cabinets in hospitals with wonderful things for young patients.  And she is involved in numerous other great endeavors.
- Sara Loew, who created the Loew Vision Rehabilitation Institute to improve the lives of people with permanent Vision Loss.  With the help of her parents and that of a devoted eye surgeon, Dr. Glenville March, she founded this wonderful nonprofit organization, which has helped many patients since opening its doors this past year.  Never turning anyone away, they have provided specialized examinations and tremendous therapy, counseling and care.
- UCLA junior Ashton Rosin. Ashton is the director of UCLA Hillel’s Bearing Witness program, a two-month weekly workshop pairing students with Holocaust survivors for intimate discussion and reflection.  Ashton found a friend in survivor Eva Brettler, but also took the program to a broader UCLA audience, including by inaugurating UCLA’s first ever Yom HaShoa Week with a series of events addressing the Holocaust. She organized a film screening, panel discussion and mid-campus Holocaust vigil, and personally reached out to disability-advocacy groups, the LGBT community and other organizations for whom the notion of struggle and suffering would have special resonance.
- Joel Lipton,  a great photographer but also a terrific human being who often donates his time, services and skills as a photojournalist to help a good cause. That’s profoundly evident at the Big Sunday events, where Joel takes portraits of people, which he gives to them on the spot -- those photos illuminate the humanity that is truly special about each person. Throughout the year, Joel helps out that way for various organizations and causes.
- Dr. Matthew Lefferman and Eric Weissman, two members of the Modern Orthodox congregation, B’nai David-Judea in Pico-Robertson.  They have worked tirelessly to ensure the presence of Sunday sports games locally.  They are coaches with the American Youth Soccer Organization.  They have helped create, structure and run a Little League Sunday division, and sit on its board. They also formed the nonprofit Maccabee Athetic Club a year ago, giving Jewish youths more opportunity to play soccer, basketball and flag football. Through these and other efforts, they give young people in the city more opportunities to play and benefit from team sports. 

Councilmember Paul Koretz, Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, and The Jewish Journal join together at City Hall to honor the current honorees of the 2012 Mensch List 

Not all of the mensches honored by the Jewish Journal were able to make the trip to City Hall, but deserve mention.  Connie Lapin and Harvey Lapin are parent activists regarding autism,  and have been remarkable productive in many efforts.  Frank Nikbakht is an unflinching voice for Jews in Iran, and spends up to 20 hours each week as the volunteer head of the Committee for Minority Rights in Iran, which raises awareness about the ongoing discrimination and persecution faced by various religious minorities in Iran.  Orna Eilon works tirelessly as the unpaid CEO of the MATI Israeli Community Center, which helps Israelis in Southern California stay connected to their faith, roots, traditions, culture and language, while promoting a spirit of community.  Lastly, Al Ashley has devoted thousands of hours of volunteer effort over 30 years working with Builders of Jewish Education:  by sharing his formidable fiscal expertise, Al has had a profound and lasting impact on Jewish schools and education throughout Los Angeles and beyond.
The Jewish Journal’s annual Mensch List commemorates the efforts of remarkable civic heroes who, through compassionate accomplishments, have changed the world for the better. The Jewish Journal thusly inspires a profound generosity of spirit among all people.

San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant

As the Los Angeles Times revealed in a front page headlined breaking story on March 9th, serious questions raised by Councilmember Koretz regarding the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant, located fifty miles to the south of Los Angeles, are well founded. In January, 2012, the power plant turned off its two steam generators due to a radiation leak in one, which led to the disclosure that both relatively-new generators were showing much-greater-than-normal tube wear.  Several months ago, Councilmember Koretz introduced a resolution calling on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and plant owners Southern California Edison (SCE) to use the safest possible process and complete public transparency in assessing any future plans concerning San Onofre.  The resolution was approved by the City's Energy & Environment Committee last week and will be voted upon by the full LA City Council in the coming days.  Councilmember Koretz also sent a member of his staff to testify before the NRC twice in the past two months in order to emphasize, as the NRC deliberates, consideration of the safety of the residents of Los Angeles, the safety of the Los Angeles Port, of Interstate 5, of our neighbors living around San Onofre and, especially of the plant workers.
In the intervening weeks, more information about the ailing power plant has been coming forward.  The Root Cause Analysis Report for tube wear identified in the Unit 2 and Unit 3 Steam Generators of San Onofre Generating Station from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) indicates, according to a letter from Senator Barbara Boxer (D-California) and Congressman Edward Markey (D-Massachusetts) to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), “that SCE and MHI were aware of serious problems with the design of San Onofre nuclear power plant’s replacement steam generators before they were installed, rejected enhanced safety modifications and avoided triggering a more rigorous license amendment and safety review process.”   Councilmember Koretz and his staff will continue to closely monitor the situation and ensure the safety of all concerned.

Coldwater Canyon Avenue alert!

Work began last weekend on a project to replace a 99-year old pipeline under Coldwater Canyon Avenue with a new welded steel pipeline that is expected to last for another century.  That's the good news, because improving L.A.'s water system is always a crucial priority.  The bad news is that local residents and businesses, as well as many motorists traveling through that area, will experience a significant impact while work on the pipeline takes place.  

Beginning this past Saturday, March 9, 2013, no left turns are permitted from Coldwater Canyon Avenue, north or south onto Ventura Blvd.  Starting March 23, 2013, Coldwater Canyon Ave. will be closed from Ventura Blvd. to Mulholland Drive, Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.  These restrictions will last through April 25, 2013, or such time that the work is completed.  Alternate routes include Cahuenga Blvd./Highland Ave., Laurel Canyon Blvd., Beverly Glen Blvd., Sepulveda Blvd., and Interstate 405.

The LADWP is working with the City Council Office that represents that immediate area, as well as local residents, community groups, schools, churches and businesses, to help minimize the strain on that neighborhood.

For additional email updates on this project, please visit the LADWP's online newsroom at and click on "Get Updates."  Select "City Trunk Line - Coldwater Canyon Construction" in the sign-up form.

This message was sent to  by:

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