August 2, 2013

In this issue:

Stopping DWP sick pay abuses

I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvement Project

Property Owners approve new Melrose Business Improvement District!

Congratulations, Nury Martinez!

Motorist alert for next Tuesday


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


UPCOMING EVENTS / ANNOUNCEMENTS

Please join the Council District 5 community on Monday, August 5th to honor and remember Raoul Wallenberg, who saved more than 100,000 Jews during the Holocaust. This event will be held to commemorate Raoul Wallenberg's 101st birthday.

Reception and refreshments will begin at 9:00AM at Jewish Family Service in the Freda Mohr Multipurpose room at 330 N. Fairfax Avenue, Los Angeles. At 10AM, the Rededication Ceremony at Raoul Wallenberg Square will take place (at Beverly and Fairfax) which will feature testimonials by Hungarian survivors saved by Wallenberg.

Free parking will be available at the CBS Lot on Fairfax. Fairfax Avenue gate ONLY. For more information, please contact Jewish Family Service at 323.937.5900.

To learn more about Raoul Wallenberg, visit the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, Saturday-Thursday from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm and Fridays from 10:00 am - 2:00 pm. Admission is free! 


***

National Night Out returns with its 30th Anniversary!

Melrose Action Neighborhood Watch, in partnership with the LAPD Wilshire Community Police Station will host this year's National Night Out at Poinsettia Park Tuesday, August 6th from 5 pm-8 pm.

Come by and sample food from nearby restaurants, enjoy refreshments, snacks, activities for kids and much more!


***

Subcontractor Outreach
U.S. Courthouse - Los Angeles

The US General Service Administration’s Office of Small Business Utilization, the Clark Construction Group - California, LP, and the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development will be hosting an outreach event on US Courthouse subcontracting opportunities.

All interested firms, especially Small Businesses, Small Disadvantaged Businesses, Women-Owned Small Businesses, HUBZone Small Businesses, Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, and Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses, are cordially invited to learn about subcontracting opportunities for the U.S. Courthouse - Los Angeles.

Come meet the team and learn about the project, schedule, subcontracting opportunities, and Small Business goals.

Agenda:

• Introductions
• Project Overview
• Project Small Business Goals
• Potential Subcontractor Opportunities
• Networking/MatchmakingBring photo identification for security clearance.

August 15, 2013
12:30 PM - Registration
1:00 PM - Presentation
2:00 PM - Networking
3:00 PM - Conclusion

City Hall
3rd Floor Rotunda & Forecourt
200 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, California 90012

Please register at this link.


***


On Thursday, August 22nd, from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm, the Century City Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a Speed Networking Night!
Be sure to arrive a half an hour early at 5:00 pm for registration, and be ready to to speed network from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm. Take a look at this link for all the details!

***

Don't miss the film series this month that is put on by the Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles!

Check out a new film or play during the month of August; time and date varies so take a look at their webpage for more information! These events take place at Freda Mohr Multipurpose Center at 330 N Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036.

***


Pershing Square Free Summer Concert Series

From July to September, enjoy this series of free concerts at Pershing Square, an outdoor area in the heart of Downtown LA, featuring a variety of musical genres and performers. Relax on the grass or sit at one of the tables with umbrellas and enjoy a weekday lunch time show, an evening
swing, or a monthly Sunday afternoon performance.

Wednesdays Lunch Concerts 12:00 noon – 2:00 p.m.

Thursdays Alternative Concerts 8:00 p.m.

Friday Nights Film 8:30 p.m.

Saturdays Downtown Stage Concerts 8:00 p.m.

All events are held at Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St.,Downtown Los Angeles

These events are sponsored by the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks
For more information, call 213-847-4970 or check out www.laparks.org/pershingsquare/


***

Grand Performances Free 2013 Outdoor Concert Series!

Grand Performances’ summer series celebrates our city’s rich diversity through performing arts. Reflecting the best of global culture through an eclectic line up of world music, dance and theater at a stunning outdoor venue in Downtown LA,Grand Performances is where Angelenos make
summer GRAND. This series will be taking place through August 24, 8:00 p.m. at the location of 350 S. Grand Ave.,Downtown Los Angeles. For more information, call 213-687-2190 or check out http://www.grandperformances.org/

***

Don't miss the Annual Los Angeles County Fair! At the granddaddy of all Southland county fairs, Los Angeles County will celebrate its annual fair with carnival rides and games that will flank the midway. Traditional exhibits that delve into fair main stays such as education, art, horticulture, agriculture, and livestock will be displayed as well.
The fair dates this summer are August 31 through September 29, Wednesdays and Thursdays 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 midnight, Sundays, 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

The fair is located at Pomona Fairplex, 1101W.McKinleyAve., Pomona and the cost varies.
For more information, call 909-623-3111 or take a look at www.lacountyfair.com


***

Calling all golf enthusiasts! The 33rd Annual Century City Golf Tournament will be held on Friday, September 6, 2013.

This event will be located at Robinson Ranch, 27734 Sand Canyon Road, Santa Clarita CA 91387.

Enjoy a day on the course with your clients, colleagues and valued employees.  Registration begins at 8:30AM and the event ends with dinner and an awards banquet at 5PM. Please visit the event webpage for more information and instructions on how to sign up!

***


Join Heal the Bay for the biggest volunteer day on the planet! Thousands of Southern Californians will clean over 50 beach and inland locations in L.A. County on Coastal Cleanup Day, September 21, 2013.

Last year in California alone, nearly 63,000 volunteers removed over 871,580 pounds of trash and recyclable waste covering more than 1,500 miles!

It's easier than ever to personally fundraise for this Coastal Cleanup day. Once you sign up, you can create a fundraising page and share with friends and family. Volunteers who raise $100 or more get a Heal the Bay t-shirt!

Be part of the change and sign up now!


***

THE DEPARTMENT OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS (DCA) INVITES YOU TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 9TH ANNUAL MUSIC LA SUMMER SESSION

DCA is proud to present the 9th annual Music LA Summer Session of music education for youth at sites throughout the City of Los Angeles. Music LA sites offer Early Childhood classes for young children ages 2 through 6 and their parents, and/or classes for youth aged 7 – 18 in Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced music instruction. Music LA works with a network of local music education providers to give children and teens a summer full of music training in a challenging and creative environment where learning, focus, and discipline are cultivated. It provides professional, affordable music education programming in areas of the City where few or no music education programs exist. Through a variety of course offerings, each Music LA site incorporates a curriculum of basic music theory, hands-on instrumental and/or vocal musicianship, and ensemble performance training. After six to seven weeks of instruction, all students will take part in culminating performances for family and friends.

The Music LA Summer 2013 Session begins on July 1 through August 11. Contact a Music LA site near you to pre-register and for more information, including mandatory parent and student Orientation dates, cost of registration, and class schedules.

***

Museum keeps public safety top-of-mind

Vote for the Los Angeles Police Historical Society Museum!

Los Angeles leaders take public safety seriously and the safety of residents and visitors is a top priority. To keep our city safe, the men and women who work in public safety in Los Angeles have developed strong partnerships with the community, local, state and federal officials and the Los Angeles Police Museum.

To get a better understanding of how police officers put public safety first, the public can go behind the badge at the city’s oldest surviving police station, built in 1925. This unique museum pays tribute to the men and women that put their lives on the line to serve the city of Los Angeles, and exhibits the various tools and systems in place to help support them. Visitors can check out everything from Charles Manson’s booking photo to an array of vintage cop cars.

You can show your support for public safety by clicking here and voting for the Police Historical Society Museum as LA’s most awesome museum.

Hurry, the voting period will end on August 15, 2013.


***

       It was the world’s first…

It remains California’s largest…

AIDS Walk Los Angeles is coming up — register today!

Sunday, October 13
will be a powerful day of activism,
remembrance, and COMMUNITY spirit.

When you register and fundraise, you help AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) radically reduce the rate of new HIV infections, connect people living with HIV/AIDS to life-sustaining care, and fight the stigma and healthcare disparities that contribute to the epidemic.

By walking and encouraging those closest to you to join your efforts, you power the vital services of AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) – its Vance North Necessities of Life Program food pantries that serve as a lifeline for many thousands who face HIV and hunger; its HIV prevention programs for youth and others at highest risk for HIV infection; and its bold public policy efforts to end AIDS in Los Angeles County and beyond.

Register today and get your spouse, partner, kids, parents, siblings and all your extended family of friends to walk for an AIDS-free generation!


***

Pet Safety in EXTREME Heat,
a message from the Department of Animal Services

According to composer George Gershwin, Summertime means “the livin’ is easy, fish are jumpin’, and the cotton is high”.This special season can also mean we need to protect our companion animals from extreme heat.

Keep in mind that when it is hot for you, it is even hotter for them.Dogs and cats do not sweat through their skin.They cool themselves by panting or rapid breathing, which means animals must work hard to stay cool.

Too much heat can be extremely dangerous or even fatal.If your best friend has a shorter nose, like Persian cats and bulldogs, he is more susceptible to heatstroke than breeds with longer noses.

If your dog or cat begins very rapid, noisy breathing, has trouble swallowing, and looks very distressed, she could be having a heatstroke.Heatstroke is an emergency.Get the animal out of the heat.Apply cold, wet towels to the back of the head.Place cold packs wrapped in towels or plain wet towels between the back legs and on the belly.Cool off your furry friend and then take her to the vet immediately.

The best plan is to keep your dog and cat protected from the summer heat.

- Always make sure that your dog or cat has plenty of fresh water to drink.A bucket that holds a gallon or more of water will stay cool longer than water in a shallow pan.Some dogs consider ice cubes a treat, and you can add a few to the water bowl.

- Dogs and cats do sweat a little through the pads of their feet.The cats I know do not appreciate water added to any part of their body, but dogs often enjoy having cool water on their feet.Some dogs enjoy walking through or even lying in a child’s wading pool.

- It is dangerous to leave your dog or cat in a car for 5 minutes.If he cannot go inside at every stop with you, he is safer at home on hot days!Car interiors heat very quickly in the hot sun, even with the windows open.If it is 85 degrees outside, it will climb to 102 degrees inside your car within ten minutes. In half an hour, it will reach 120 degrees or more!If it is 90 degrees out, temperatures can top 160 degrees faster than you can walk around the block.

- While walking your dog outdoors, play particular attention the hot pavement or sidewalks that make your dog’s lower to the ground walking space hotter and can even burn their feet.Early morning and later evening walks will be more comfortable for you both!

- Animals who go outside need access to shade. Dark coats absorb heat.Lighter coated animals, especially white ones, are at higher risk for skin cancer from exposure to the sun and they are more susceptible to sunburn.

- Longer coated dogs and cats who are brushed regularly have natural insulation from the heat.However, if the coat has gotten matted, a summer clip will make your buddy much more comfortable and allow you a new start at keeping him brushed.Remember, newly clipped animals can get sunburned.

- If your dog spends time in the yard, make sure she has access to shade.Shade trees, a covered patio, or a cool spot under the porch can help keep her comfortable.

Companion animals want to be with you. They will be safer and cooler inside with you, where they can spend their time doing what they do best: being your best friend!

***


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.


***

AROUND TOWN

Motor Avenue Farmers' Market

Weekly community event featuring fresh produce, French crepes, hot tamales, and artisanal sauces, musical acts, vintage clothing, as well as handcrafted items by local artists and designers and children’s activities like pony rides and a petting zoo.

When: Every Sunday from 9am to 2pm, year-round, Rain or Shine

Where: National Blvd west of Motor Avenue

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.

MELROSE NIGHT

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 http://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!

***

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 5-1-1 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 5-1-1. You can also use this to report obstacles or hazards in the road, (but wait until you have stopped driving to call!). Calls to 5-1-1 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 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.

Stopping DWP sick pay abuses

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is instituting a much-needed change in how it handles employee sick pay.

This resulted from a motion introduced by Councilmember Koretz, demanding that “any and all appropriate and applicable management and representatives of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, joined by city ratepayer advocate Fred Pickel, report back to the Los Angeles City Council regarding this policy and program and any possible abuses and reforms.”

Koretz had introduced his motion hours after reading a shocking Los Angeles Times story that disclosed how some – though by no means most – DWP workers have reportedly taken outrageous advantage of a lax but largely unknown sick leave policy, in order to gain alarmingly high numbers of paid sick days without a doctor’s note, and at significant cost to the city and its ratepayers.   

As the Los Angeles Daily News records (Aug 1. 2013), “Bowing to political pressure, the head of Water and Power this week ordered a dramatic change in how sick leave is accrued and paid out to the utility’s workers.  General Manager Ron Nichols sent out a memo on Wednesday instituting a change requiring workers to provide a note from a doctor if they are sick for more than three days.”  The Daily News indicated that the impetus for the change was the {Koretz) “proposal asking for an explanation from the department.”

You can find the full Koretz motion, which shares much of the details contained in the Los Angeles Times story, at the following link:  http://clkrep.lacity.org/onlinedocs/2013/13-0909_mot_07-26-13.pdf


I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvement Project

The Sunset Boulevard northbound off-ramp to the I-405 will be closed for up to 120 days starting Friday, August 2nd at 7pm as part of the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project.


The new configuration will feature two northbound right-turn lanes to eastbound Sunset and one northbound left-turn lane to westbound Sunset.

Significant impacts to the movement of traffic in the area are expected. Motorists who routinely use the Sunset off-ramp are encouraged to plan trips to allow for time to reach their Westside and Valley destinations.

The contractor has done as much work as possible prior to the demolition of the ramp, and the hope is that this next phase of work will be done substantially more quickly than the 120 days allocated for the process.

In order to minimize the disruption to the community and the public, Metro and the contractor have conducted outreach in order to let people know about this closure, but there is no doubt that it will be a significant inconvenience. However, this is essential work that has to be done, and the 5th Council District Office is working closely with Metro in order to assist and expedite.

Please contact the 5th Council District's Transportation Deputy, Jay Greenstein, with any questions or concerns you may have regarding this Metro project.

For additional project information or to obtain detour maps, visit www.metro.net/405. Follow the project on social media at www.facebook.com/405project and http://twitter.com/I_405. For real-time traffic conditions, visit Caltrans web site at www.quickmap.dot.ca.gov.


Property Owners approve new Melrose Business Improvement District!


From left to right: Don Duckworth, Paul Koretz, Sylvia and Denis Weintraub

A Business Improvement District, or BID, is a means for a business community to fund and provide certain services and beautification projects within its own specific geographic area.

BIDs have become an ever more important option and tool because local governments are financially stressed and not always able to provide the desired programmatic funding.  When a BID is created, property owners elect to accept a management plan that will involve assessments to fund such projects and services.

On July 30th, ballots cast by commercial property owners along Melrose Ave. (between Highland and Fairfax) were counted by the Los Angeles City Clerk’s Office, and the vote was heavily in favor of creating a new Business Improvement District.

The day after the votes were counted, the Los Angeles City Council formally accepted and approved the results, and the ordinance establishing the BID was sent to the mayor for his signature. And so the birthing process for the Melrose BID will have run its course, but January, 2014 is when the BID goes into actual operation.

Councilmember Koretz and many businesses, property owners and community leaders have worked tirelessly to create this BID. Special thanks go to the Melrose Avenue Property Owners Association and its president, Denis Weintraub, and also consultant Don Duckworth.  Melrose Avenue is an invaluable asset for L.A.’s tourism, culture and commerce, and it possesses world famous allure, but the worldwide recession has taken a toll on most business communities, Melrose included, and so the new BID will be a wonderful mechanism for shining this special gem and giving it even more appeal.


Congratulations, Nury Martinez!


From left to right: Gerry Martinez (Nury's husband), Councilmember Nury Martinez, Angela Padilla (Senator Padilla's wife), Senator Alex Padilla, Alejandro Miguel Padilla (son)

Councilmember Koretz and his staff heartily congratulate Nury Martinez for her remarkable victory in a July 23 special election.  On Friday, August 2nd, she was sworn in to fill the 6th Council District seat on the Los Angeles City Council, a position that had been left vacant after Tony Cardenas was elected to Congress.

Ms. Martinez, a former school boardmember, is currently the only woman on the current City Council.    

Hers was a stunning win because - though she enjoyed a clearly decisive 10 percent margin over her runoff rival, former Assemblymember Cindy Montanez - Ms. Martinez had finished second by 19 percentage points to Ms. Montanez in the earlier May primary.  Most political pundits had thought a Martinez victory in July to be near impossible, but the candidate and her campaign were intrepid throughout and clearly proved stellar in connecting with the voters during the runoff campaign.  Such energy and resolve bodes well for her time on the Council.  Best wishes to both of the candidates, and congratulations again to Nury Martinez!

Those who came to the City Council on Friday, July 26 to celebrate the Martinez win included two of her most prominent supporters, Congressmember Tony Cardenas and State Senator Alex Padilla, both former councilmembers. Pictured from left to right are Gerry Guzman (Nury's husband – years ago, he served on the staff of then-Assemblymember Paul Koretz!); then Councilmember-elect Nury Martinez; Angela Padilla, and her husband, Senator Padilla, who is holding their youngest son, Alejandro Miguel Padilla.


Motorist alert for next Tuesday


A meeting held in 2012 has helped make Presidential visits less burdensome to the public

A presidential visit to the Southland is scheduled for this upcoming Tuesday, August 6. For anyone heading out on the road that day, it's best to look in advance for pertinent information about President Obama's travel plans (which reportedly focus on Burbank), in order to avoid any risk of being stuck in unusual traffic caused by a motorcade.

It is expected that the United States Secret Service and the Los Angeles Police Department will be able to share such information fairly late on Monday: assuming that transpires, the 5th Council District will send out another newsletter at that time, containing whatever news has been provided. Of course, there will also be relevant media reports.

For obvious security reasons, details about such travel plans are not released until fairly close to a president's (or other high ranking dignitary's) estimated time of arrival.  The good news is that this flow of information has improved and become significantly smoother since the latter part of 2012, when visits by the competing presidential campaigns were associated with some very difficult traffic tie-ups.  At that time, in order to address the situation, Councilmember Koretz called for and convened a meeting discussing how to best facilitate the flow of such information, so that information could be shared collectively and not piecemeal, and in as timely a manner as possible.  Attendees included Councilmember Koretz, representatives of other council offices and the mayor's office, the Secret Service, the LAPD, the LAFD, the Sheriffs Department, the Highway Patrol, Metro, CalTrans, and representatives of law enforcement and elected offices from smaller, nearby cities.  Councilmember Koretz salutes and thanks all those involved, especially the Secret Service and the LAPD. 


This message was sent to  by:

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