"Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his homeboys"
Why would Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa be so dismissive of the findings of City Councilman Tony Cardenas's Ad Hoc Committee on Gang Violence and Youth Development?
As reported in the Los Angeles Times
, the committee stated that "the city of Los Angeles should create a standalone department of gang prevention and intervention instead of relying on the mayor's office to oversee anti-gang programs as it does now, according to a report released Monday".
Citing the need for greater financial oversight and improved collaboration between the city, law enforcement, courts, schools and social service agencies, the report called for a comprehensive change in the way the city addresses the root causes of gang violence. The Ad Hoc Committee on Gang Violence and Youth Development has been reviewing city gang initiatives for roughly four years.
The response from the Mayor's office was swift and defiant."The graduate students who wrote the report deserve an 'A' for effort, but at a time when we're working to deliver services more efficiently, creating a new government bureaucracy is driving the wrong way on a one-way street," said Matt Szabo, deputy chief of staff to Villaraigosa.
Szabo should get an "A" for spin with this response. But here is the real reason why the Mayor wanted to have direct oversight of the allocation of gang funding.
06/27/08 Maria Lourdes Calanche (Instructor, LA Community College District) Los Angeles, CA 90031 Antonio Villaraigosa Mayor 1305101 - Antonio R. Villaraigosa for Mayor 2009 A - Monetary Contribution Received (IND - Individual) [Period: 01/01/08-06/30/08] $1,000.00
Its all about money!! Or should we say the franchise fees?
We have posted here numerous times about the dubious dealings of the latest "connected non-profit" Legacy LA
and their connections to close associates of Mayor Villaraigosa. (Dalila Sotelo, Lou Calanche, Jenny Krusoe
, David Galaviz
, Raul Estrada just to name a few).
A source has stated that Legacy LA is endanger of losing their Gang Reduction, Youth Development or "GRYD" contract due to "double counting". Legacy LA, as part of their GRYD contract, is require to work with 25 gang members and 25 youths who are potential gang members. But it seems that Legacy LA is trying to count the 25 potential gang members again as "gang members" on their reports to GRYD. Further community members are questioning whether the two intervention specialists, "George" and "Renee" are actually in the field doing their work.
In addition, the GRYD rep for the area "Eduardo" was recently terminated from his position with the city, Eduardo also was the on-site coordinator at Ramona Gardens Recreation Center, for the Mayor Villaraigosa's "Summer Night Lights" program.
According to a source close to the organization, Legacy LA did indeed lose their contract only to see it quickly reinstated by the Mayor's office. The employee "Renee", who was an close associate of Jenny Krusoe has lefted the organization, as has Jenny Krusoe. Further, some close to the Summer Night Lights program at Ramona Gardens have stated that "Eduardo" was terminated for his lack of supervision, in regards to the staff structure at Ramona Gardens.
It is clear in our reporting on Legacy LA, that politics played a major role in the creation of this organization (former Mayor staffer and now CRA employee Carlos Alvarado and Jenny Krusoe were the original front people) and one can surmise that Legacy LA was created solely for being a repository for future gang funding and thus, payouts in jobs to their associates.
Maybe that is why Matt Szabo was so "over the top" with his retort to Councilman Cardenas's committee report, after all, protecting the franchise fees to Mayor Villaraigosa is of paramount concern.
View the links below for e-mail documents obtain under the Public Records Act which highlight the political collusion behind the creation of Legacy LA.
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 1
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 2
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 3
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 4
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 5
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 6
** Former Daily News Editor now blogger Ron Kaye, has posted his endorsement for Paul Krekorian in the CD 2 Special Election for City Council.
The city is at a crossroads.
We have seen how ordinary citizens could defeat the machine on Measure B in March, how it could pull together and elect Carmen Trutanich as City Attorney in May. So let's hand the mayor and the machine a third straight defeat in December by elected Paul Krekorian in CD2.
** Councilman Greig Smith and Dennis Zine, aka, "The Spring Street RINOS" have announced their endorsement of Chris Essel for the CD 2 City Council seat.
** Mayor Villaraigosa, Councilman Huizar and others associated with Aramark Turkey Giveaway fiasco at the Convention Center, might want to make nice to those hundreds of people who were denied their Turkeys. Chants of "WE WANT TURKEYS!!, WE WANT TURKEYS!!", mixed with images of "connected associates" of various public officials, driving off with turkeys without providing the require vouchers, is going to create a backlash.
** Speaking of turkeys, Mayor Villaraigosa and the City Council will get a financial reality check today.
The Los Angeles City Council today will get what is expected to be a sober briefing on the city's financial condition, a day after L.A.'s credit rating was downgraded. The city’s credit was downgraded by Fitch Ratings on $2.94 billion in debt, meaning that borrowing money will become more expensive for Los Angeles as it grapples with a $98-million current-year budget shortfall and faces the prospect of graver fiscal woes in the years ahead.
** This city continues to go to pot with Councilman Ed Reyes leading the way.
Dispensaries in Los Angeles could continue to accept cash for medical marijuana under a provision approved by the City Council on Tuesday, after it adopted language carefully crafted to maneuver past the city attorney's adamant position that state law bars the sale of the drug.
This from Councilman Ed "density" Reyes,
Several members harshly criticized the city attorney's office. Councilman Ed Reyes, who oversaw the effort to write an ordinance, accused the office of pressing "a political point of view that has nothing to do with objective advice."
** The LA Weekly chronicles how Los Angeles went to pot in an extensive must read by Patrick Range McDonald and Christine Pelisek, here is a passage on Eagle Rock residents interaction with their attentive councilperson.
Michael Larsen sought out Reyes, who had bottled up the regulations for years, never sending a plan to the City Council for a vote. When Larsen finally wangled a meeting with Reyes, he found himself facing a few city employees — and four marijuana activists, including Don Duncan.
“It was clearly lopsided,” Larsen says. After that, Larsen tried for three months to reach his council representative, Huizar, a former school board member who Larsen assumed would be on top of things. But Huizar — who has a personal staff of 26 people — ducked all of Larsen’s calls.
So Larsen came up with a little subterfuge of his own: He and another neighbor found out where Huizar was going to be appearing in public, and in April, “we ambushed him — at an Easter event. We walked up to him with a paper showing all the medical marijuana dispensaries in our community. We said, ‘What are you doing about it?’ He feigned shock.” More recently, Huizar’s office “asked me to please find out what is going on with them. I am happy to do it, to keep the thing moving. But it is just crazy, that it’s our responsibility to be on top of this stuff.”
Some will say that is the normal Huizar reaction to all issues.
Your thoughts and Happy Thanksgiving to all.
Labels: 2010/2011 city budget, cd2 special election runoff, GRYD, Legacy LA, mayor antonio villaraigosa, medical marijuana, tony cardenas