Whistleblower hotline: (213) 785-6098

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Outtakes from CD 14: CLARTS Fund Transparency Held Hostage, Day 40 and other CD 14 News

Hola and good Saturday morning from the City of Los Angeles Council District that made "political cut and pasting", the art form of political expression, emulated by many city wide.
As we noted in a previous "Outtakes from CD 14 Special Report", CD 14 Councilman Jose Huizar's Chief of Staff Ana Cubas, send this email in response to The Voice Editor and Publisher Carlos Morales's request for documents pertaining to the CLARTS Fund.
February 25, 2010
Dear Carlos:
Thank you for your Feb. 23, 2010 request made to our office. I wanted to make sure we acknowledged receipt of your request. We have made “a determination” with respect to your request within 10 days, as we are required to do under the law.
We believe the records are public and we ask you to recognize that you are asking for records spanning a number of years. Given this fact, we estimate that it will take approximately thirty (30) days to fully gather the specific expense information you seek in the first half of your request.
With respect to the second half of your request, relating to council motions, I would encourage you to look at the publicly available information on the City’s Council File Management System (CFMS) website at: href="http://cityclerk.lacity.org/lacityclerkconnect/" rel="nofollow" http://cityclerk.lacity.org/lacityclerkconnect. There is a simple search function on the CFMS that will allow you to quickly and easily search for any City Council Motions involving CLARTS funding. All of the actual motions are downloadable as PDFs from that site.
Finally, your request asked for information from the last five years, however the Councilmember has not been in office a full five years. The Councilmember was first elected to office in November 2005. We will gladly give you information from that point on. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at 213-473-7014.
Ana E. Cubas, Chief of Staff
Councilmember Jose Huizar
200 North Spring Street, Room 465
Los Angeles, CA 90012
213-473-7014 Phone
It has now been 40 working days since Cubas send the email posted above and still no documents have been made available to The Voice Newspaper.
One needs to strongly consider here whether the integrity of the California Public Records Act, has been violated by the Office of Councilman Huizar. This pocket guide to the California Public Records Act, via the First Amendment Project Website, may be of some help in this matter.
Consider this in regards to making a request for public records.
An agency has 10 days to decide if copies will be provided. (Cubas did do that) In "unusual" cases (request is "voluminous," seeks records held off-site, OR requires consultation with other agencies), the agency may upon written notice to the requestors give itself an additional 14 days to respond. ( Memo to Cubas, 10 +14 does not add up to 40 days of stonewalling) (§6253(c)) These time periods may not be used solely to delay access to the records. (§ 6253(d)) (That is the M.O. of Huizar's office, delay the bad news truth for their boss).
Simply, has Councilman Huizar's office violated the California Public Records Act? Looking at the information above, one can make a case that they have.
Maybe someone should make a request to the Los Angeles County Hall of Records, that the name for Councilman Jose Huizar, should be officially changed to "Councilman Jose Richard Millhouse Nixon Huizar"? But then, one can say that Nixon was a better man for owning up to his past mistakes.
More in the days ahead on the "CLARTS Fund Transparency Held Hostage".
** What is it about Councilman Jose Huizar and rule breakers?
The battle between Olvera Street merchants and the management of El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument has heightened in recent weeks, as more than 40 merchants have refused to pay their full rents, which increased on April 1.
The move, which means the cash-strapped city is short more than $72,000 of what is owed, could lead to eviction notices being sent to the tenants, though it is unclear if those would be pursued.
Robert Andrade, El Pueblo’s general manager, said that tenants could face a three-day notice to pay rent or face the consequences. The move came after 43 tenants on April 1 delivered only the amounts they had been paying, in many cases for a decade or longer. Some merchants have protested that the new rate hikes are too steep.
Further, the story cites some of "politically connected merchants" past due rents.
El Pueblo officials for years have tried to increase rents, only to be rebuffed by a powerful and politically connected group of merchants.
Of the 74 tenants on Olvera Street, 17 have 55-year leases, and are not impacted by the new rates. Fourteen have paid the new rates, while 43 delivered checks for the previous amounts.Their increases range from $316 to $5,762.
Tenants that made partial payment include Casa La Golondrina, owned by Vivien Bonzo, president of the Olvera Street Merchants Association. Bonzo, who did not return calls for comment, still owes $5,095 (the total new rent is $10,726) for her 5,363-square-foot restaurant, according to documents that are publicly available. She also owes an additional $1,039 for 1,650 square feet of office space. La Golondrina owes the city more money for April’s rent than any other tenant.
Other tenants that owe substantial amounts include Myrosa Enterprises, run by Mike Mariscal ( ** he is the brother of Recreation and Parks Management Official Mark Mariscal, who we have noted here at Mayor Sam, in the recent past) ; he only paid his previous rent, of $1,046. That makes him $4,234 behind on the $5,280 rent that went into effect April 1. When called by Los Angeles Downtown News, Mariscal hung up on a reporter.
But if Councilman Jose Huizar has his way, these merchants will not have to worry about being evicted.
While Huizar said he has been pushing for higher rents that are fair to merchants and still make El Pueblo self sufficient, evictions “[are] not going to happen,” he told Downtown News. He said that he thinks the merchants have not had an opportunity to negotiate their leases.
This causes the inner political cynic in me to think that Huizar will broker a deal to end this "choreographed standoff" and the merchants will reciprocate at re-election time in 2011. After all, that is the checkered history of political affairs at El Pueblo de Los Angeles.
** Save the subsidized CalTrans renters!! Someone left this comment about today's event in El Sereno.
You are cordially invited to LA RED. On April 24, 2010 (12:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.), El Sereno is hosting a mixer based on self-determination. All communities are welcomed. This gathering is an opportunity to create and fortify networks. Come one and all to have some fun in the sun....For directions to the festivities, see link below:http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=112016098819943&index=1
April 23, 2010 5:07 AM
** Lastly, has Councilman Jose Huizar, just lost another staff person? This time from his Eagle Rock Field Office? Just wondering..........
Your thoughts as always appreciated.....................
Scott Johnson in CD 14

Labels: , , , , , ,


Anonymous Anonymous said:

Good stuff Red Spot. You should know word around the community is to be careful posting on Mayor Sam because computers in areas have been hacked. The CLARTS issue has been a major headache to people and hard to believe the media doesn't follow the story. You have posted the corrupt LA Legacy issue as well. Guess where the Mayor is having his gun buy back this year for one of the sites?

"Villaraigosa said the city handed out 1,302 gift cards worth about $130,200 last year. This year, although the number of sites has been whittled down from 19 to five, it is prepared to spend $200,000. People can turn in their firearms at the following locations: in East Los Angeles, at Legacy L.A., 1350 N. San Pablo St.;

April 25, 2010 8:52 AM  

Blogger Red Spot in CD 14 said:

On the subject of computers being hacked....

Sources just confirmed that Jose Huizar is frantically try to find out who is Red Spot and whom might be blogging bad about him. He has aquired the help of two I.T. Specialist named Uli and one Mr. Lucero. Apperently they have been talking to men people about their assignment. I hope they know this is illegal and the Feds are probably monitoring Huizar moves. Wouldn't want to get you gentalmen mixed up in all this.

August 07, 2009 7:29 PM

Maybe this has to do with a number of CD 14 and other city activists getting spam e-mails on Viagra and other crap. All this will achieve is greater scrutiny on the actions of Councilman Huizar in 2010.

April 25, 2010 10:58 AM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home