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May 2016 Neighborhoods First
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May 2016

Welcome to the May issue of Mike Bonin's "Neighborhoods First Newsletter"!

IN THIS ISSUE : We report on the long-awaited opening of the Expo Line to the
Westside, major public safety news for Pacific Palisades, a City budget that
focuses on addressing homelessness in our neighborhoods, proposed short-term
rental regulations, this weekend's neighborhood council elections, and a whole Contact Our Office
lot more... b u t f i r s t , please read this month's Neighborhoods First Profile to find
out more about the grassroots effort that helped make the Expo Line a reality.
Connect with Facebook
You can find out more about Mike , meet your CD11 staff and see the latest
videos and updates from the Westside on our website at .
Connect with Twitter
And remember to like Mike's Facebook page and follow him on Twitter to always
see the latest news about your neighborhood.

Councilmember Mike…


The Grassroots Organizers Who Made the Expo Line a Reality You and 371 other friends like this
The Westside joined in celebration on
May 20, as the Expo Line connected
Tweets by ​@MikeBoninLA
downtown and the beach via light rail
Mike Bonin
for the first time in more than six @MikeBoninLA
decades. Proud to have worked with @givingspirit &
assembled winter kits for homeless residents. Sign
Amid all the celebration and hoopla up for the 2018 Homeless Count because every

surrounding the line’s official opening, resident, no matter where they live, matters
Mike dedicated his comments at the
grand opening event on May 20 to
shine some light on the grassroots
activists who defied the odds and
created the momentum and the will
that led to the Metro Expo Line.

While the line seems like long overdue
They Count Will You?
commonsense today, 20 years ago the project faced long odds and significant
The 2018 Greater Los Angeles Homeless …
opposition. In that climate, hearty bands of visionaries went door to door,
persuading doubtful neighbors and skeptical public officials of the need for
alternatives to freeway gridlock. Gratitude is owed to the Friends for Expo Transit, 5h
The Transit Coalition, Light Rail for Cheviot, and a host of other groups from the
Westside and Mid-City. Folks like Darrell Clarke, Ken Alpern, Bart Reed, Kathy & Embed View on Twitter
Jim Seal, Julie Maher, Faith & Presley Burroughs, Bob Cheeseboro, Jonathan Weiss,
Cathy Flanigan, Roger Rudick, Russell Davies, Gorhik Esirgen, Karen Leonard,
Sarah Hayes, Faith Mitchell and many more all played pivotal roles in making
the Expo Line a reality.

The Expo line was made possible by grassroots organizers, shoe-leather activists
and hard-working and under-appreciated volunteers. We must always remember
that big changes, the kind of revolutionary idea that connect a city and make our
neighborhoods better places to live, work and enjoy more often than not come
from people who are willing to be bold, who are willing to advocate for an idea,
who are willing to say YES. That is how the Expo was built, and that is why we
owe these local leaders our thanks.

Find out more about the captivating story of grassroots organizing that made
the Expo a reality in this guest post on StreetsblogLA by Friends4Expo’s Kathy
Seal .

Engine Company 69 Comes Back to the Pacific Palisades
Huge news in the Pacific Palisades this month - Engine Company 69 is back in
Pacific Palisades!

A few years before Mike took office, the City of Los Angeles made brutal cuts to
the Los Angeles Fire Department, shutting engine companies around the city,
including Engine Company 69 in Palisades - a geographically isolated community
at enormous risk of brush fires. It was a life-threatening decision, and both Mike
and his predecessor vowed to reverse it. On May 15 (Fire Service Day in LA), that
promised restoration came true - thanks to an incredible partnership with Fire
Chief Ralph Terrazas, the United Firefighters of Los Angeles City, IAFF Local-112,
members of the community, and Mayor Eric Garcetti. Mike rode into the station
on Engine 69 with the chief, Pacific Palisades Community Council President Chris
Spitz, and Frank Lima, president of UFLAC, who worked at Station 69 when the
engine company was removed.

This is a huge win for the community, and for public safety in both the Pacific
Palisades and Brentwood.

Venice Neighbors and Local Veterans Rally to Restore Mural Dedicated to
Vietnam Veterans After Vandalism

As people began preparing to honor Memorial Day this past weekend, a
disgraceful and despicable act of vandalism desecrated a historic Venice mural
dedicated to 2,273 POWs and troops declared Missing in Action during the
Vietnam War. The enormous mural, painted in the early 1990s, is on
Pacific Avenue - just a few blocks from Venice Beach, on a the wall of a
former bus yard owned by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan
Transportation Authority. Mike, his staff, LA Metro, Venice Chamber of
Commerce Vice President George Francisco, local veterans and neighbors sprung
into action, working to restore the historic mural and to find those responsible
for the vandalism.

Local veteran Jon Scudder and scores of volunteers showed at the site on Sunday
up to remove the vandalism from the mural. Mike has also already been in touch
with the Social and Public Art Resource Center (SPARC) and others to make sure
the mural is repainted, that all of the names are restored, and that protective
anti-graffiti coating is applied to the mural to protect it in the future. On
Tuesday, Mike will submit a motion asking the City to post a $10,000 reward for
information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for this
desecration, and Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Don Knabe and Michael Antonovich
have indicated the County of Los Angeles will also be offering a reward. Anyone
with information should call the Los Angeles County Sheriff at 888 950 7233 , or
Mike's office at 310-575-8461 .

Read Mike's full statement about the unfortunate incident here.

Resurfacing Completed on Mar Vista Ovals

The Mar Vista Ovals neighborhood has been in dire need of street maintenance,
but engineering challenges have prevented the Bureau of Street Service from
completing the needed repairs - until now. Last week, Marcasel Avenue, North
Park Avenue, East Boulevard, and Pacific Avenue in the Ovals neighborhood were
repaved by the Bureau of Street Services, delivering smooth streets to the area.
The street improvements were made possible because neighbors voted to assess a
fee on their properties to repair broken curbs and gutters that were preventing
the street repair work from being completed. Thank you to the neighbors of the
Mar Vista Ovals for stepping up to make your neighborhood a better place to live!

Traffic Control Officers Deployed to Sunset Boulevard to Help Alleviate

Earlier this year, Mike launched his Sunset Traffic Initiative - a collaborative
effort to improve the worst gridlock in his district -- intolerable traffic on Sunset
Boulevard approaching the I-405 in Brentwood. As part of that initiative, the Los
Angeles Department of Transportation recently started deploying traffic control
officers on Sunset during the evening rush hour.
The new deployment is a 90-day pilot program. Staff will be evaluating how
effective the officers are at keeping traffic moving, particularly through clogged
intersections. Traffic officers will be deployed along Sunset Boulevard at
Barrington Avenue and Bundy Drive. If the presence of the officers makes a dent
in the gridlock, Mike will work with LADOT to develop a strategy for keeping
traffic officers on Sunset in the long-term.

Deploying traffic control officers is just one of many steps Mike is taking as part
of the Sunset Traffic Initiative. Just a few weeks ago, Mike hosted the inaugural
meeting of the Sunset Transportation Collaborative, a cooperative effort of the
major institutions along the corridor, seeking ways to reduce traffic through
mutual efforts and best practices.

A cornerstone of Mike’s effort is community input. In February, he hosted a
community workshop and charrette, where hundreds of neighbors listened to
transit experts and offered their ideas. Subsequent to that meeting, Mike asked
for feedback on an interactive online survey. The workshop and online survey
generated hundreds of suggestions and ideas, and we expect to have a
comprehensive report on all of them soon.

Pedestrian Safety Improved in Venice

Keeping kids safe as they get to and from school is at the heart of Mike’s work to
put ​n eighborhoods first on the Westside.

On May 2, Mike helped a crew from the LA Department of Transportation install a
new flashing beacon crosswalk signal to very visibly alert cars of pedestrians
crossing Abbot Kinney Boulevard near Westminster Avenue Elementary school.
This simple solution will do a lot to keep kids, parents, and neighbors safe as they
cross the street.

Refurbished Sign Welcomes Visitors to Westchester
The monument sign welcoming people to Westchester is a great symbol of
neighborhood pride, and it is now as good as new! Starting in April, Los Angeles
World Airports began restoring the “Welcome to Westchester” monument sign at
the corner of Sepulveda and Lincoln Boulevards. Over the years, the sign has
experienced normal wear and tear and over the past few weeks, LAWA staff
restored the sign to its original state. The sign is now finally complete and
includes a new paint job along with new lighting.

Mike Hosts Access 11 Office Hours at Pacific Palisades Car Show

Mike routinely hosts “pop up office hours” as part of his Access 11 program - an
effort to bring City Hall to the Westside. Mike spent a few hours on May 15 at the
8th Annual Community Expo & Exotic/Classic Car Show, sponsored by the Pacific
Palisades Chamber of Commerce , where he spoke with neighbors about local
concerns and neighborhood issues. In addition to lots of positive feedback on
Mike’s announcement about the restoration of LAFD's Engine Company 69, he
also got to meet Honorary Mayor Kevin Nealon and the crew from Chrysalis,
which works for the new Pacific Palisades Business Improvement District to keep
the area clean.

Senior Fraud Awareness Day Celebrated in West LA
Seniors are a frequent target of scams, and Mike has worked to ensure that
elderly neighbors are prepared to identify and avoid predatory schemes. Each
year, we celebrate “Senior Fraud Awareness Day in LA” by honoring deserving
individuals who are working on behalf of seniors in our neighborhoods. On May
15, we celebrated Senior Fraud Awareness Day at the Felicia Mahood Senior
Center in West LA by honoring Consumer Reports' Tobie Stanger, Mar Vista's own
Sherri Akers, and Stop Senior Scams Acting Program Outreach Director Bill
Tokubo, for their work on behalf of seniors in Los Angeles.

A special thanks is owed to Adrienne Omansky and the entire team at Stop Senior
Scams Acting Programs for their ongoing efforts to educate and entertain
seniors about how to stay safe from scams.

ET Comes Home - Space Shuttle Fuel Tank Visits Westchester

Early in the morning of May 21, ET-94, the 66,000-pound external fuel tank that
will accompany the Endeavour Space Shuttle Exhibit at the California Science
Center began a trip through Los Angeles. ET-94 started the final leg of its journey
in Marina del Rey, before winding through Westchester where neighbors
congregated to marvel at the spectacle. Thankfully, not a single leaf on a single
tree along the route needed to be disturbed as the fuel tank was transported.

Mike Fills Potholes in Mar Vista
Mike loves getting his hands dirty with city crews in the field because not only
does he get to directly deliver services to neighborhoods on the Westside, but he
also gets to learn more about the important (and difficult) work that improves
our communities.

On May 16, Mike started the day with a Bureau of Street Services crew in Mar
Vista, where he helped the crew patch potholes at the intersection of Rosewood
and Rose Avenue.

DWP Listens to Community, Proposes New Locations for Pole-Top Power

Earlier this year, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power proposed
installing two temporary pole-top substations in the Pacific Palisades to help
address power reliability issues throughout the neighborhood. Mike joined
neighbors in concerns about a lack of community input into the proposals, and
asked that LADWP host a public meeting in March to gather input and ideas about
alternative locations for the temporary power infrastructure.

On May 6, Mike was very pleased to inform neighbors that after hearing from
several hundred people in the Pacific Palisades, LADWP has decided to use two
alternative sites for the pole-top power substations: Sunset Blvd near Marquez
Ave. (called the Bernheimer lot), and Temescal Canyon Blvd. south of Sunset Blvd.
These alternative sites were suggested and preferred by the community, and Mike
greatly appreciates LADWP’s willingness to modify their plans based on
neighborhood input.

Yogaworks Opens in Playa Vista
As businesses continue opening in Phase 2 of Playa Vista, the community is
beginning to feel more and more like a neighborhood. On May 14, Mike’s Playa
Vista-area deputy Chuy Orozco joined Senior Studio Manager Kevin Elliot to
celebrate the grand opening of YogaWorks in the Runway Playa Vista center.
YogaWorks opened its doors to neighbors throughout the day for free yoga
classes and other classes.

Celebrating Cinco de Mayo in Del Rey

It was a beautiful day on May 7, when the community of Del Rey came together to
celebrate Cinco De Mayo at a festival hosted by the Mar Vista Family Center . After
several years in hiatus, Mike was able to help bring this tradition back to the
neighborhood. Thank you to Daniel Jimenez, who organized the day's festivities,
and to Lucia Diaz and the community members who volunteered at the festival.

Alvin Mills Retires from Brentwood Symphony Orchestra

For 63 years, Alvin Mills has held the baton as the conductor of the Brentwood-
Westwood Symphony Orchestra. In May, at age 94, the maestro retired. Alvin’s
final concert was a very special event, where he was surrounded by friends and
family and celebrated the years that he dedicated to bringing out the best in
every musician.

Read more about Alvin in Steve Lopez's LA Times column about the Maestro .

West LA Run for Hope Raises Money for Our House Grief Support Center

The Annual Run for Hope raises money for the Our House Grief Support Center in
the West LA/Sawtelle neighborhood, so that the center can fulfill its mission to
teach kids that it is okay to grieve and that no one grieves alone. This year was
the race’s seventh year in West LA and Mike was proud to serve as Grand Marshall
and to start the race in honor of Bill Rosendahl. The race raised an impressive
$450,000 to support Our House’s worthy cause.

Venice Arts Celebrates Young Filmmakers

Venice Arts is a shining example of a local organization that does an amazing job
sparking and nurturing creativity in our young people. On May 15, Mike was
pleased to honor an amazing crew of young people who produced a video about
Venice Forward, a local collaborative effort to end homelessness. You can see the
video at: .

You can find out more about Venice Arts and the inspiring work they do to offer
arts education to low-income youth, at .

Pacific Palisades Neighbors Enjoy St. Matthew’s Community Fair
There is nothing quite like at old-fashioned Town Faire to bring neighbors
together, and on May 21, Mike attended the annual fair at St Matthew's Parish
School in the Pacific Palisades . The event drew hundreds of residents who had
tons of fun. The festival serves as a great reminder that our big, sprawling city of
millions truly is a wonderful collection of small towns.

Kenter Avenue Repaving Fixes Potholes in Brentwood

Kenter Avenue, between Sunset Boulevard and Bundy Drive, got some needed
attention from the Bureau of Street Services in May, as the street was repaved.
The street improvements repaired potholes and other degrading areas of
roadway on the heavily used local street.

Springtime Ladies Jam Highlights Female Skaters in Venice

The Venice Springtime Ladies Jam is a wonderful event hosted at the Venice
Beach Skatepark, which celebrates awesome women and girl skateboarders in LA.
Organized by Heidi Lemmon and in part conceived by LA’s First Lady Amy Elaine
Wakeland, the Venice Springtime Ladies Jam features a series of competitions,
including the “Pup Cup” - an event for very beginners. Pros and Legends attended
the event to sign autographs in the VIP tent and to put on demos in the big bowl.
Utility Box Art Comes to Mar Vista

Public art helps give neighborhoods a sense of identity and character, and Mike
has routinely encouraged more public art in appropriate venues on the Westside.
In May, Mar Vista became the latest Westside community to get brightened up
with the addition of murals on utility boxes, as four new murals were painted on
utility boxes in Mar Vista by local artists. The works are part of the Department of
Cultural Affairs' Citywide Mural Program and highlight Mike's commitment to
strengthening community spirit and supporting local artists. Thank you to artists
Andre Morand, Bethany Richards, Chalavie, and Sept for their beautiful murals!

They can be seen at:

National/Inglewood (Sept)
Venice/Beethoven (Chalavie)
Venice/Inglewood (Andre Morand)
Venice/McLaughlin (Bethany Richards)

Mike Meets with Santa Monica Canyon Civic Association

The Santa Monica Canyon neighborhood of the Pacific Palisades is a terrific
enclave of the Westside, with an incredibly active and engaged neighborhood
organization - the Santa Monica Canyon Civic Association . Mike joined neighbors
at the SMCCA annual meeting on May 10, where he discussed homelessness,
traffic, airport noise and other important issues to the Santa Monica Canyon

Ladera Heights Neighbors Lead Charge to Improve Street Signs in
Ladera Heights is one of few neighborhoods in Mike’s Westside district that can
be found east of the I-405 freeway, and neighbors are often faced with issues
caused by confusing jurisdiction, since the neighborhood borders the City of
Inglewood and unincorporated area of Los Angeles County. Thanks to a
grassroots community effort led by Treva Miller, captain of the 63rd & Acacia St.
Neighborhood Watch, Mike and his staff were successful in getting new street
signs installed that identify which streets are in the City of Los Angeles. The new
signs will help residents and visitors know who to call to report issues or street

“Many did not believe this would happen,” said Miller about the new signs.
“[Councilmembrer Bonin] has proven that our little community is not forgotten
and that with the right leadership great things can happen.”

Vera Davis Community Center Update

After wild and misleading rumors started circulating in Venice, Mike addressed
the future of the Vera Davis McClendon Youth and Family Center last month.

For most of the past two decades, the Vera Davis Center was funded through
federal anti-poverty grant money, and was managed by the city’s Community
Development Department. In recent years, however, the federal government has
repeatedly cut anti-poverty dollars, and complicating the situation even further,
the neighborhood unfortunately no longer meets the federal government’s strict
requirements for anti-poverty dollars, which are only allocated to what the
federal determines to be low-income census tracts.

More recently, first Councilman Bill Rosendahl and then Mike have fought to
keep the Vera Davis Center open, and the City’s Housing and Community
Investment Department has agreed to manage the site on a shoestring budget –
provided that the city find another organization (such as a nonprofit) that can
operate it.
Faced yet again with potential closure of the center, during last month’s budget
deliberations, Mike directed two city agencies to report with projected timelines
for opening up the application (formally known as a Request for Proposal, or RFP)
process and awarding a contract to manage the center.

Before the city releases the RFP, there will be a public input process to ensure
neighbors have an opportunity to share their hopes and ideas for how the Vera
Davis Center can continue to be best used by families and children in the

The center is NOT closing June 30, and Mike will continue fighting hard to make
sure it remains open as a valuable community resource.

Read Mike’s full post about the Vera Davis Center

Mike Joins South Brentwood Residents Association at Annual Meeting

Mike joined homeowners in South Brentwood for a lively discussion about traffic,
homelessness, solar power and a whole lot more at the South Brentwood
Residents Association ’s annual meeting earlier this Spring. As always, South
Brentwood Residents Association President Marylin Krell organized a great event,
which also included reports from representatives of the Veterans
Administration, the Los Angeles Police Department, Congressman Ted
Lieu and State Senator Ben Allen .

Park Improvement Process Begins for Del Rey Lagoon in Playa del Rey

Local parks are an important parts of our neighborhoods - they are a great place
to spend a day, take kids to play and to hang out with your neighbors. Mike works
with neighbors to ensure our parks are the best they can be, and earlier this
month, the Westchester/Del Rey Lagoon Park Advisory Board held a public
meeting to hear from the community about proposed improvements to the Del
Rey Lagoon park in Playa Del Rey, including a gate around the playground to help
with safety for toddlers at play and informational signage about native birds and
vegetation at the park. A lively roundtable discussion at the meeting produced
great input and brought out some productive feedback from locals generally
about what they'd like to see in their local green space.

You can find out more about the Westchester/Del Rey Park Advisory Board and
the improvements proposed for Del Rey Lagoon Park by

Mike Moderates Candidate Forum for Neighborhood Council of

Serving on a neighborhood council is a tremendous way to help make your
neighborhood a better place to live, and anyone who is willing to dedicate the
time and effort to running for a seat on their local neighborhood council
deserves our thanks and appreciation. On May 19, Mike joined current
Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa (NCWP) President Cyndi Hench to
serve as a moderator for a candidate forum as NCWP candidates talked about
why they wanted to represent their communities on the neighborhood council.

Be sure to check out the “Get involved” section below for more information about
the upcoming June 5 neighborhood council elections on the Westside!

City Budget Dedicates Nearly $140 Million to Preventing and Addressing

One of the most significant aspects of the 2016-17 city budget is the dramatic
increase in funding for programs that prevent and address homelessness in Los
Angeles (check out a broader report about the budget in the “Legislation” section
below). As the only member of both the Budget & Finance and Homelessness &
Poverty committees, Mike made ensuring there was adequate funding for
homelessness service programs a major priority, fighting to protect and expand
the funding Mayor Garcetti allocated in his budget proposal.

This dramatic increase in funding over previous years demonstrates that the City
is recognizing that we must act urgently and thoughtfully to address the most
pressing issue facing our neighborhoods - homelessness in Los Angeles.

Earlier this year, Mike and his colleagues on the Homelessness and Poverty
Committee, under the leadership of Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson,
helped develop a Comprehensive Homelessness Strategy that works in close
coordination with a companion strategy plan at the County of Los Angeles. Those
plans are meaningless blueprints, however, without funding to implement them.
Mayor Eric Garcetti, Mike, and Mike’s colleagues on the Budget and Finance
Committee worked to allocate the funding needed to start implementing the
Comprehensive Strategy Plan in this budget, and Mike is already working to
implement the strategies called for in the plan in the neighborhoods he
represents on the Westside .

Mike and Colleagues Lobby for Homelessness Funding in Sacramento

Homelessness is an urgent crisis that requires an “all hands on deck” response
from every level of government. As the City and County allocate funding in the
budget and explore ballot measures to provide sustainable funding sources, Mike
and his colleagues Marqueece Harris-Dawson and Gil Cedillo took a trip to
Sacramento on May 23 to lobby state legislators for funding from the state. Mike
and the city delegation met with Speaker Anthony Rendon, Senate President
Kevin De Leon, Assemblyman Tony Thurmond, Assemblyman David Chiu and
Senator Jim Beall to press the state lawmakers to provide more funding and
resources for homelessness and affordable housing to help us solve a crisis that
threatens our neighborhoods.

New Permanent Supportive Housing Opens in Del Rey
As the city grapples with a housing crisis that is exasperating homelessness in
LA, Mike joined with community leaders in Del Rey on May 4 to celebrate a
significant step on the road to solutions.

Mike attend the grand opening of 21 units of permanent supportive housing in
Del Rey. With the full endorsement of the Del Rey Neighborhood Council, and
with the support of public and private partners, Venice Community Housing and
Hollywood Community Housing Corporation built the project, and St. Joseph
Center will provide services to formerly-homeless residents.

At the ceremony, guests heard from Patrick Ward, who graduated from Venice
High School 36 years ago, and worked at Bed, Bath & Beyond before an injury left
him disabled and eventually homeless. Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority
helped connect Patrick to services and eventually his new housing in this
building. The building is beautiful, with roomy units, easy access to public
transportation, solar panels, and an edible garden on the roof.

In his comments at the ceremony, Mike gave special kudos to the neighborhood
council and the community of Del Rey, which has demonstrated yet again that it
is a community that believes in being part of the solution, supporting this
project, and similar projects from PATH and 1736 Family Crisis Center.

LAHSA Homeless Count Results - Progress for Housing Homeless Veterans

In early May, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority released the results of
its annual homeless count. The results were in line with what Mike has been
predicting for months - homelessness in LA is going to get worse before it gets
better. The comprehensive city and county strategies, approved just a few
months ago, start kicking into gear in the next few months. While the full LAHSA
numbers are still being tabulated, there are a few important observations from
the top-line results released in May:

People are becoming homeless faster than we can currently house them. As a
City, we housed nearly 10,000 people in 2015 alone, including 2,668 veterans
and 2,846 chronically homeless people — more than any other city in the
country. The housing shortage in LA is a major problem that must be
Homelessness among veterans and families dropped SHARPLY, indicating that
the type of focused, targeted investments that are central to the city and
county homelessness strategies work.
We need a massive surge in construction of permanent supportive and
affordable housing.
The LAHSA Count numbers should put formidable pressure on city
policymakers to: approve a linkage fee on development to build affordable
housing; approve new policies fast-tracking affordable housing development;
approve construction of micro-units.
Our unsheltered homeless population - already one of the highest in the
nation - has increased again. We need to implement elements of the city
strategy to turn shelters into bridge housing, provide safe parking for people
living in their vehicles, provide free storage, and increase access to restrooms.
Though initial reports said that homelessness had increased 11% in the City of
Los Angeles in the past year, LAHSA released corrected numbers, clarifying
that the increase was actually about 5% .

Read the LAHSA Count results at:

Mike Joins The Giving Spirit Volunteers to Prepare “Summer Survival Kits” for

Swelteringly hot summer days can be incredibly dangerous to people forced to
live on the street, and last month’s newsletter featured a profile of Tom
Bagamane, a Brentwood resident who created a group that creates and
distributes “care packages” to homeless people to help them survive the summer

Mike joined hundreds of volunteers at The Giving Spirit ’s event on May 21 to help
create care packages. Volunteers gathered at command central at the Brentwood
Presbyterian Church, filled backpacks with toiletries, food, contact information
for social service agencies, and other supplies and fanned out throughout Los

County and City Both Explore Sustainable Funding for Housing and
Homelessness Services
While the money allocated in the 2016-17 budget (see above) is a good start, the
city will need permanent and sustainable revenue streams to address this
problem in the long-term. Mike is working with his colleagues to explore a ballot
initiative and linkage fees on development that could create those lasting
funding sources, including a bond measure that would ensure at least $1 billion
to build housing for the homeless in LA.

Simultaneously, the County of Los Angeles has approved a resolution asking for a
state law to be changed so the County can place an initiative on the ballot that
will raise money to address homelessness by placing a small tax on incomes
greater than $1 million a year. This measure, championed by Supervisors Mark
Ridley-Thomas and Sheila Kuehl , would be a tremendous help in the city and
county’s coordinated work to combat homelessness in our neighborhoods.

Mike Continues Fight to Bring Safe Parking Program to LA

As Mike has worked to address the variety of issues facing our neighborhoods
because of the homelessness crisis in Los Angeles, vehicle dwelling has been one
of the areas where he has been most focused. Mike is working to find a solution
that offers people an alternative to living in their cars on residential streets.

This issue must navigate a very complicated legal landscape, and Mike has been
working with the City Attorney to develop a new ordinance that is legally sound,
which addresses the needs of neighborhoods, and which treats people living out
of their cars fairly. The City Attorney has asked to meet with the City Council in a
closed session meeting to discuss a new draft of the ordinance, and that meeting
will likely take place in the next few weeks.

Though the legal landscape is complicated, two things are clear - the current
situation is intolerable for everybody, and we need to provide alternatives for
people who are living in their cars in residential neighborhoods as we work to get
more housing built that will address this crisis in the long-term. In order to
provide these alternatives, Mike is championing a safe parking program similar
to what has been successful in Santa Barbara . In a safe parking program, non-
profit groups, churches and businesses open up their parking lots to small groups
of people living out of their cars and allow them to park overnight, as long as
they get connected with social service providers that will help them along a path
to sustainable solutions like housing. Safe parking could be a real help to the
issues you raise in your email, and Mike has been leading the Council in cutting
the absurd red tape that has prevented this from happening in LA.

Bill Rosendahl tried to launch such a program years ago, and it got stymied by a
culture of inaction. But now, the Safe Parking program is part of the City's
Comprehensive Homelessness Strategy, Mayor Garcetti proposed money for it in
his budget, and Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority is developing the
program. Mike is determined to get this started.

All Aboard! The Expo Line is Now Open!

After 63 years, Los Angeles once again has rail to the beach!

On May 20, Mike joined colleagues and scores of excited Westsiders as the Expo
Line extension opened for service, officially connecting the Westside to the Metro
rail network for the first time since the Red Car line stopped service in 1953. Mike
has worked with neighbors to get this project done for years, and he not only
represents one of the new stations (the Expo/Bundy stop in West LA), but he
currently serves on the Metro Board of Directors and as the Chair of the Expo Line
Construction Authority.

The Expo line was a huge draw for commuters on the first Monday it was in
service, with 12,058 new TAP entries at the Expo Line’s seven new stations
throughout the day.

Trains will run every 12 minutes daily (except late at night), and commuters can
take advantage of the traffic-free ride between downtown and the Westside,
which will take about 47-48 minutes, from about 4:30 a.m. to about 1:45 a.m. on
weekdays and until 2:30-ish on weekends.

You can find out more about the Expo Line and everything you need to know
before you ride at
to-know-expo-santa-monica/ .
Mike Celebrates Bike to Work Day in Mar Vista

Every day is a good day to celebrate the women and men who chose to bike to
work, taking traffic and pollution-causing cars off our neighborhood streets, but
once a year, we dedicate a day to highlighting the benefits of biking to work. On
May 19, Mike joined members of the Mar Vista Chamber of Commerce at a “Bike to
Work Day Pit Stop” they had arranged on Venice Boulevard to offer free coffee,
water and other goodies to people who had chosen to bike to work. Thank you to
the Chamber, local businesses and the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition for
making this Bike to Work Day a tremendous success!

Halfway There! Crenshaw/LAX Line Reaches Milestone

More light rail is coming to Los Angeles!

On May 7, Mike joined neighbors and local leaders at a special event to
commemorate the halfway point for the construction of Metro’s next exciting
light rail project - the Crenshaw/LAX Line. The Crenshaw line will connect with
the Expo Line and will serve the Crenshaw District, Inglewood, Westchester, and
many other neighborhoods. Importantly, this line will include a stop near LAX,
which will connect with the people mover being built at the airport, which will
allow people to travel to and from the airport without needing a car! The
Crenshaw/LAX line is scheduled to open in 2019.

Helping College Students Get Around Town
The Metro Board is making it easier and cheaper for students to use public
transportation in LA! On May 26, Mike and his colleagues on the Board approved
"U-Tap" (the Universal College Student Transit Pass), a two-year pilot program
that allows students enrolled in at least eight units at 10 local colleges or
universities to ride Metro busses and trains for a discount.

Students who testified at the May 26 hearing were largely low-income students
who spoke of having to make a decision between eating or buying a transit pass.
The program will offer students affordable transportation, give Metro the
opportunity to build ridership and develop transit habits at an early age, and of
course can help reduce parking demands at local colleges.

You can find out more about U-Tap in LAStreetblog's coverage of the vote
transit-pass-pilot-program/ .

Improving Safety As People Bike and Walk To Metro Stations

More than 80 percent of people who take the bus and more than 65 percent of
people who take the train get to Metro stations on foot. Mike and his colleagues
on the Metro Board of Directors are making it easier and safer to walk near Metro
bus and train stops through a plan known as the Active Transportation Strategic
Plan .

The Metro Board adopted the plan on May 26, laying out a detailed strategy for
improving connections to transit with projects like bike lanes, signage,
crosswalks, light signals and curb-widening. Building these better connections to
transit stops not only helps protect people in their neighborhoods, but it also
encourages more people to use transit, taking cars off the street and alleviating
Flight Path Noise Study Prepares for Release

In response to continuing concerns from some neighbors in Mar Vista and the
Pacific Palisades, Mike asked Los Angeles World Airports to conduct an
independent study to analyze the flight paths over these neighborhoods, so we
can better understand what may be causing the recent change in noise impacts
that many residents have unfortunately experienced.

LAWA has completed the study and will be presenting the results at the next LAX
Noise Roundtable Meeting scheduled for June 8th at 7pm at the Clifton A. Moore
Administration Building at LAX (1 World Way, Los Angeles, CA 90045). If you are
interested in attending this meeting, please reach out to our LAX Liaison Omar
Pulido ( for more information and directions.

Welcoming Trevor Daley to LAWA

Mike welcomed an old friend to a new job this month, as Trevor Daley was
announced as the new Deputy Executive Director, Chief of External Affairs for
Los Angeles World Airports. Trevor, who worked with Mike when they both served
on the staff of former Los Angeles City Councilmember Ruth Galanter, has been
the State Director for United States Senator Dianne Feinstein for the past 16

In his new position, Trevor will oversee and coordinate the efforts of the
Government Affairs, Public/Media Relations and Community Affairs divisions
for LAWA, which will include extensive work with the Westchester and Playa del
Rey communities. Mike is excited about working with Trevor to make LAX a
world-class airport that is also a first-class neighbor.
Short Term Rental Regulations Considered at Community Meeting

Earlier this year, after months of work and collaboration with neighborhoods
throughout Los Angeles, the Department of City Planning released a draft
ordinance to regulate short-term rentals in Los Angeles that will protect both
affordable housing and neighborhoods while still allowing people to rent their
primary residences for home-sharing. The regulations were the subject of a
public hearing held on May 21, where Planning Department staff listened to
feedback on the draft regulations as they prepare for the regulations to be
considered by the City Planning Commission on June 23.

Hundreds of passionate neighbors attended the public hearing, and both short-
term rental hosts and neighbors who are encouraging strict regulation were well
represented at the forum. The public input process will continue as the draft
regulations are considered by the Planning Commission, a Council Committee
and the full City Council. You can submit your comments via email by sending
them to

Mike Fights for Tough Billboard Rules

Mike took a stand against the visual blight that comes with excessive billboards
in our neighborhood last month, when he penned a letter to the Planning and
Land Use Management committee , urging his colleagues to protect
neighborhoods from the negative impacts of outdoor advertising. The council
committee is considering new rules for where billboards will be allowed -
particularly digital billboards - and the proposed ordinance the committee is
debating limits new billboards to designated sign districts, and further limits the
places in LA where sign districts were allowed to be established.
Planning Department Hosts Meetings About Mansionization

The City Planning Department is undertaking a two-part effort to address
mansionization throughout the city.

Part one of the effort is exploring amendments to citywide “Baseline
Mansionization Ordinance/Baseline Hillside Ordinance” (BMO/BHO), which
would close loopholes in existing rules and ensure that future development is
compatible with the surrounding neighborhood.

Part two of the effort is focused on specific areas of the city (including Mar Vista,
East Venice and the Kentwood neighborhood of Westchester) and identifying
tailored zoning rules for each area that will reflect the specific requests and
needs of each neighborhood. One size does not fit all, and the Planning
Department is working to identify appropriate zoning for each neighborhood.

The Planning Department held meetings in each area of the city that would be
subject to tailored rules for their community, and Mike has committed to
ensuring more opportunities for Mar Vista, East Venice, and Kentwood to provide
input as the process to adopt tailored regulations for these neighborhoods moves
forward. Comments can also be submitted through email by sending them

Find Out More About the City Council's Work to Put Neighborhoods First

$8.76 Billion City Budget Approved
Mike and his colleagues on the Budget and Finance Committee spend more than
40 hours in deliberations throughout May, dissecting and discussing the budget
for the fiscal year that starts in July. Working in partnership with Mayor Eric
Garcetti, the City Council approved a smart budget that will help move Los
Angeles forward, do good and get things done.

The budget allocates more money for our neighborhoods -- street resurfacing,
sidewalk repair, and protecting public safety. It adds more firefighters, park
rangers, and hires more civilians in LAPD to get able-bodied cops out on patrol
where they belong. It adds key staff to the Planning Department to update our
community plans, providing funds to LADOT for traffic control officers and
carshare and bikeshare programs. The budget spares seniors, at-risk youth, and
community centers from cuts. And it spends nearly $140 million on the most
pressing issue facing our neighborhoods – homelessness (more on that in the
“Combatting Homelessness” section above). Please find a summary of some
highlights from the budget below:

A Fiscally Responsible Budget
Established the largest reserve in the history of LA - more than 6% of the
Sets aside nearly $100 million in a rainy day fund that can only become
available in the event of an economic downturn

Focuses on What Neighborhoods Need

$138 million for homeless services and prevention
60% more on public infrastructure than the city's policies require
Funds 2,400 miles of pavement preservation
Allocates $31 million to fixing sidewalks
$2 million dedicated maintain medians
$8 million for cleaning streets and alleyways
$2.5 million for graffiti abatement
Restores the speed hump program (find out more in the “Transportation”
section above)
Funds more crews to trim trees in our neighborhoods

Enhances Public Safety

Supports our Fire Department, allowing for needed new hiring
Moves toward civilianization of our police force - getting sworn officers
out from behind desks and on the street where they can better protect

Mayor Garcetti Signs Executive Directives on Job Creation
The City of Los Angeles is one of the leading employers in the region, and last
month, Mayor Eric Garcetti took action to restore core city services and create
long-awaited job opportunities for L.A.’s most under-served communities,
including the homeless and the formerly incarcerated who need a second chance
(or as some have said, never got a first chance).

The Mayor’s Executive Directive prioritizes local hiring, which will ensure that
every qualified Angeleno has an equal opportunity to apply for full-time city

City Council Debates DWP Reform Proposal

Earlier this year, Mike’s colleagues on the City Council authored a motion
proposing amendments to the Los Angeles City Charter and Administrative Code
that would restructure the governance and oversight of the Department of Water
and Power. On May 17, the Council heard a presentation about the ongoing
discussions regarding the reform proposal.

The reform proposal recommends that key sections of the City Charter be
amended to address concerns about DWP’s governance, including: the part-time,
voluntary nature of the DWP Board of Commissioners, which limits oversight of
utility operations; the fact that DWP must report to multiple city entities,
resulting in decentralized authority and inefficiency; the limited access to
independent analysis of proposals granted to the DWP Board; how DWP is unable
to quickly recruit and hire key positions with qualified personnel; and finally,
the Department’s annual transfer to the city General Fund continues to increase.

To find out more, please read the joint CAO/CLA report about the reform proposal
here .

Mike Fights to Bring Speed Hump Program Back to Neighborhoods

Years ago, the Department of Transportation’s program to install new speed
humps to slow traffic on neighborhood streets fell victim to budget cuts, leaving
neighbors without an important tool in protecting safety on their street. Mike
fought to ensure there was funding allocated in the city budget to restart the
dormant program. Mike heard a report about how LADOT plans to use the
funding that he got allocated during the budget process. Though the funding
available for new speed humps is only a start, Mike’s work to get the program
restarted will lead to big improvements in street safety in our neighborhoods.

Hike the Uninterrupted Backbone Trail!

The Backbone Trail is a 67-mile adventure that takes brave hikers through the
Santa Monica Mountains from Point Mugu to Will Rogers State Historic Park in
the Pacific Palisades. On May 30, it was announced that for the first time in 50
years, hikers would be able to hike the trail uninterrupted, thanks to state
acquisitions of key parcels of land in the Mountains. This is great news for hikers
and outdoor enthusiasts alike, and special thanks is due to Joe Edmiston and
the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy for their tireless efforts to make this
uninterrupted trail a possibility.

May Small Business Spotlights
Local small businesses provide more than jobs for people on the Westside - they
are part of what make neighborhoods great. Each week, Mike chooses a local Mom
and Pop business to feature on social media in his " Small Business Spotlight ."
Do you have a favorite business you want to nominate to be featured in Mike's
Small Business Spotlight? You can make a nomination for the “Small Business
Spotlight” at this link.
VOTE! Neighborhood Council Elections - June 5

When the City Charter was adopted, a process was outlined to engage neighbors
in monitoring important issues in their communities, such as public safety, land
use and development, transportation, and parking. Neighborhood Councils are
official bodies that work with Council Offices to ensure neighborhoods are part
of the decisions affecting Los Angeles, and the board members who volunteer to
serve their communities help make LA a better place to live, work and enjoy.

Election for Westside Neighborhood Councils will take place on Sunday, June 5.
Please visit the link below to find out more about the election dates and times in
your area, as well as the candidates running to represent your neighborhood!

Helpful Links

Contact Us - Submit a comment, question or concern, using our helpful
website form.
Maps and Directions - Visit us in one of our two district offices, or downtown
at City Hall.
Request City Services - Have a pothole that needs to be filled or a tree that
needs to be trimmed? Submit a service request directly to the city.
Sign Up for Updates - You are already signed up if you received this email,
but are all of your friends? Forward this message, or share this link with your
neighbors so they can get the latest news about their neighborhood as well.

Find out about just some of the events happening in your neighborhood
in the next month!

Venice Neighborhood Council Candidate Debate
When: June 1 and June 2; 6pm - 9pm
Where : Westminster Elementary, 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd.
Venice Pride Festival
When: June 3; 7pm
Where : Windward and Pacific Ave., Venice

Westchester Lutheran Church & School Carnival
When: June 4; 10am - 6pm
Where: 7831 S. Sepulveda Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90045
More info :

MarinaFest 2016
When : June 4 and June 5; 11am - 6pm
Where : Burton Chace Park

Neighborhood Council Elections!
When: June 5
Where: Find out here:

Badge of Heart "It's for the Kids" School Supply Events
When: June 11; 9am - 12pm
Where: Pacific Community Police Station (12312 Culver Blvd.)

YMCAs "All in for the Kids" Poker Tournament
When : June 17, 7pm
Where : Westchester YMCA Annex (8020 Alverstone Ave., 90045)

Playa Vista Movie in the Park
When :June 17; 5pm
Where : Central Park Bandshell, Playa Vista

Go Skateboarding Day
When : June 21; 5pm
Where : West LA Civic Center (1645 Corinth Ave.)

LAeXpo Chamberfest hosted by LAXCoastal Chamber of Commerce
When : June 23; 4pm - 7pm
Where : The CenterPointe Club (6200 Playa Vista Dr., 90094)

LAX Run 2016 - Tommy Scott Memorial Half Marathon
When : June 25; 7am
Where : Westchester/LAX Fire Station No. 5 (8900 S. Emerson Ave.)

Have an event you would like listed? Email to
submit events.

Thank you for reading the May issue of Mike Bonin's Neighborhoods
First Newsletter.

For more about Mike and Council District 11, please
v i s i t

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