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Thursday, December 29, 2011

CRA is no more thanks to California Supreme Court

 Will the "Valley Greuel" bail out soon to be defunct CRA LA CEO Chris Essel?
No more need for the community outreach skills of CASA 0101.
The California Supreme Court put the final silver nail into the coffin of California's assorted redevelopment agencies today, upholding Governor Jerry Brown desires to use CRA money to offset budget cuts. In addition, the California High Court also slap down the law that kept alive CRA's that shared a portion of their proceeds with the state. 
As Ron Kaye notes, these are the two key paragraphs from today's court decision.
"Assembly Bill 1X 26, the dissolution measure, is a proper exercise of the legislative power vested in the Legislature by the state Constitution.  That power includes the authority to create entities, such as redevelopment agencies, to carry out the state's ends and the corollary power to dissolve those same entities when the Legislature deems it necessary and proper.  Proposition 22, while it amended the state Constitution to impose new limits on the Legislature's fiscal powers, neither explicitly nor implicitly rescinded the Legislature's power to dissolve redevelopment agencies.  Nor does article XVI, section 16 of the state Constitution, which authorizes the allocation of property tax revenues to redevelopment agencies, impair that power." 

"A different conclusion is required with respect to Assembly Bill 1X 27, the measure conditioning further redevelopment agency operations on additional payments by an agency's community sponsors to state funds benefiting schools and special districts.  Proposition 22 (specifically Cal. Const., art. XIII, § 25.5, subd. (a)(7)) expressly forbids the Legislature from requiring such payments.  Matosantos's argument that the payments are valid because technically voluntary cannot be reconciled with the fact that the payments are a requirement of continued operation.  Because the flawed provisions of Assembly Bill 1X 27 are not severable from other parts of that measure, the measure is invalid in its entirety."

Now for CRA LA, the major speculation is what recourse the State of California will have to repatriate close to a $1 billion that the agency transfer to the City of Los Angeles in anticipation of this ruling? Look forward to a legal slugfest over the control of this money.

Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Is a sequel to Richard Meruelo's Taylor Yard Land Swindle in the works?

A "happy" Los Angeles River between the Two Freeway on the west and the Pasadena Freeway on the east.
While the LA River smiles in the Google Image above, Northeast Los Angeles environmentalists are quickly mobilising to counter a possible replay of the infamous Developer and Mayor Antonio Villar  Mayoral Campaign Financer Richard Meruelo "Taylor Yard LAUSD Land Deal". 
A key 44 acre parcel of the former Southern/Union Pacific Taylor Yard complex that once contain the roundhouse and engine house, is now being pursuit by the Trammell Crow Company for industrial development. Trammell Crow is owned by CB Richard Ellis which possesses vast tracts of property city wide and nationally and just signed a deal with CRA to purchase the controversial Cleantech site downstream from Taylor Yard for $15.4 million. 
With Trammell Crow entering into a "purchase option agreement" with property owner Union Pacific, for the intent of developing the parcel for industrial use, activists are opening speculating whether this is a Meruelo-like attempt to buy sought-after land and sell for a quick profit to the likes of the California State Parks.
The State Parks has already purchase 18 acres in the area and had set aside financial resources to purchase the 44 arces G-2 Parcel and rehabilitate to property for public usage.
The fact that this is taking place within CD 1 City Councilman Ed Reyes domain and that Reyes is the Chairperson of the PLUM Committee at City Hall, is raising eyebrows about nefarious dealings along the banks of Councilman Reyes's "Legacy Project".
** Read email from Northeast Activists after the jump.
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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

LA Times endorses Joe Buscaino in CD 15

Score another major endorsement (if tepid) for San Pedro's LAPD Senior Lead Officer Joe Buscaino as the Los Angeles Times Editorial Board graced the first time political aspirant with its nod of approval to replace now Congresswoman Janice Hahn as CD 15's City Council rep. But lets make no false allusions about the insular elites that comprise the Old Gray Hag on Spring Street's Editorial Board, being enamour with Buscaino's grasps of the issues. Far from it, the Times scribes took both Buscaino and Assembly Warren Furutani to task for not being specific in regards to their stated questions. But in hindsight, the Times in endorsing Buscaino, with its journalistic story budget of dialog as documentation, can create a template that holds all officeholders accountable in the future, something that is six year and two mayoral elections overdue in Los Angeles print media.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14       

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Monday, December 26, 2011

Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Monday

  KABC Talk Radio Host John Phillips.
Former KABC 790 AM Newsman Rob Marinko.
Great post Christmas Monday to you as this blogger and others of the "Clipper Nation" celebrate our first victory on the way to the playoffs in 2012. Celebrating has its price as I miss the first morning of the holiday reunion of John "The Sports Princess" Phillips and Newsman Rob Marinko at KABC 790 AM this week during the morning drive (5-9 AM). While most within the local political community are taking vacation time or operating on cruise control, there is news for public consumption as we note below.
** City officials executed a classic "Friday before Christmas Bad News Dump" by disclosing the initial cost of police resources use for the "Flea Party Bug Out" at $1.7 Million dollars (the cost of restoring the City Hall brownfields is still outstanding which should push this total above $2 Million). The disclosure of the higher than expected cost, prompted City Controller Candidate Dennis Zine to call upon the City Attorney to seek reinburstment from SEIU, correction the Red Rabble of Occupy LA. The Daily News puts the total at $2.35 Million.
** We understand that former Mayoral Candidate Walter Moore was on air with John Phillips this morning discussing the stupid and potentially deadly decision to change impounding rules for those caught caught driving without a valid license. Once again the race pandering is more important than public safety and puts the city at risk to legal repercussions.
** Lastly, the Police Protective League is in need of some outside policing of their elections as Daily News Rick Orlov reports.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Christmas Story of Redemption from Ramona Gardens

Blogger's notes: As we are blessed with a beautiful Christmas Day in Los Angeles, this blogger would like to share this story of the blessed redemption of Gabriel Acosta and the power of our better angels overcoming the inner demons of destruction.Years ago as a child, this blogger remembers a drugged-out person behind the wheel of a pick up truck, ramming the front doors of closed Nico's Market in the attempt to gain entry. Back and forth, the truck went knocking the doors off its foundation just in time for LAPD's arrival and the arrest of the driver.Years later and countless battles against drug-feeding demons behind him, that drug out driver was led back to Ramona Gardens in 2008 by his inner better angels, in search of redemption (that story in his own words, was noted in the January, 2010 Issue of The Voice Newspaper). Gabriel Acosta was that driver and his new found inner strength based in faith, is a transformative tale of good overcoming evil. With the help of some, through the powerful conviction of one, Gabriel has brought hope to Ramona Gardens with his now Fourth Annual Toy Giveaway and other events within the community. This year in these hard economic times, Gabriel sold his vehicle to help finance this year's toy giveaway which bares witness to the transcendental change for the good in Gabriel Acosta---Scott Johnson       
Gabriel Acosta and friend.
LAFD Engine 16 brings "Christmas cheer" to Ramona Gardens.
 Some of Gabriel's Christian Bikers friends arriving with toys in Ramona Gardens
 Some of the 200-300 bikes.
 Toys being gather for giveaway.
 Children and their parents during program.
This young lady will always remember her first bike thanks to Gabriel's "transformation of soul".
Merry Christmas.
Scott Johnson in CD 14.

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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Downtown News Jon Regardie presents ........ "Santonio Clause"

Santonio Clause dispenses with the spoils of a patronage Christmas at 200 Spring Street. Picture via the Downtown News.
Blogger's notes: If there is anyone working in the local print media that has taken ownership of "mayoral satire" (ie. lampooning Mayor Villar), then were talking none other than Downtown News Editor and "Scribe of Wit" Jon Regardie. No one has been more audacious in poking the notorious thin-skin of the former City Terrace tough guy turn mayor than Regardie in musings that must meet with consternation on the Third Floor in City Hall. Now with the dawn of the last work day/ floating holiday/ furlough day before Christmas fast approaching, we bring you this excerpt of Regardie's latest, "A Visit to Santonio Clause". And here is wishing Regardie and all in the political bloggersphere a Merry Christmas---Scott Johnson.
Visitor No. 3: A man named Charlie B. wearing a crisp blue uniform with a badge.
Santonio Claus: Ho ho ha ha ha! It's my best friend in the world. Wasn't it great how after two months we played hardball with those pesky occupiers? Don't answer! I'll do it. It was great! Now what would you like from Santonio Claus?
Charlie B.: You always talk about making Los Angeles the safest big city in America-
Santonio Claus: From now on it's the universe!
Charlie B.: OK, the universe. To do that, I need 500 more police officers.
Santonio Claus: Ho ho ha ha ha! No one can do that in this economy. My position in City Hall allows me to dispense gifts, not miracles. Where would I find the money for that?
Charlie B.: That's up to you.
Santonio Claus: Ho ho not so fun. Would you like a golden parachute instead? A silver sword?
Charlie B.: No, I need the 500 officers.
Santonio Claus: Ho ho harrumph. OK, I'll cut the City Attorney's budget again to pay for your officers. I kind of like doing that.
Your thoughts..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14   

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HACLA & LAPD bring Christmas cheer to Ramona Gardens

Blogger's notes: We take a break away from our recent HACLA bashing, and reverse gears to praise the housing agency for their partnership with LAPD, in bring the Christmas cheer to the Ramona Gardens Housing Project on Tuesday evening.Working with a newly-elected Ramona Gardens Resident Advisory Council (** under the great leadership of Maggie Ortiz), GRYD Program Provider Barrio Action and City of Los Angeles Recreation and Parks, HACLA and LAPD gave out presents to over 350 children residing within Ramona Gardens. LAPD highlighted the festivities by hauling out their specially-modified sleigh for the event. This event was an outgrowth of a new five year agreement between HACLA and the LAPD to provide 10+ specific officers to police the Ramona Gardens Projects, working with Civil Rights Activist Connie Rice's Advancement Project---Scott Johnson    
The cheerful staff of Barrio Action waiting to hand out some Christmas cheer. 
 Ramona Gardens parents and kids line up at sunset to get good tidings from Santa.
 LAPD Pacific Division Officer Marcy Garcia and LAPD Booster Monica Harmon. Officer Garcia grew up in the Ramona Gardens/ Hazard Park Community and it was her idea to bring the sleigh across town from its Pacific Division home, to the neighborhood of her youth.
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Is Parke getting sloppy in CD 15?

 Is Parke Skelton getting gamed and sloppy in CD 15?
Does Joe Buscaino have "multiple personas" register to vote in CD 15?
Are we getting close to desperation time in the CD 15 Special Election?
It seems that the Warren Furutani Campaign is getting desperate in its search for absentee ballot voters as they arrive with Christmas stuff this week in CD 15 and Parke is leaving no voter untouched, including one "Joe Buscaino".
Apparently there is a identical twin to the "candidate Joe Buscaino" that shares the same address but not the same choice to replace Congresswoman Janice Hahn on the City Council as noted in the campaign letter above.
While "Candidate Joe" knows of no other sibling that shares his name and household, we wonder if at some point during his adult life, whether some incident cause "part of Candidate Joe" to leave his "current state of being" and assume a more progressive persona judging by his most recent voting record?
But then just maybe, we stumble upon a Parke Skelton strategy to register all eligible personas that are eighteen and over and judging from the growing momentum for Buscaino, he made need the "Roseanne Barrs of the world" and some multiple Evergreen Cemetery size precincts of new voters to offset Buscaino's growing support.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14       

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Toy Giveaway in Honor of Deceased LAPD Highland Park Station Homicide Detective Joe F. Aguirre

Blogger's notes: This blogger would be remiss if he did not take the time to highlight this act of giving from the family of retire parole officer Caroline Agurrie, along with daughter Dr. Maria Nieto , in honor of her late husband LAPD Highland Park Station Homicide Detective Joe F. Aguirre. Most in the local political community know Caroline for her "direct and blunt assessment" on policing and the state of California's Parole System. But what many don't see when engaging with Caroline on issues (especially if they are expressing an argument counter to Caroline's), is a heart that matches her petite size. You can judge for yourself with these facts. Between Walgreens, Target and Rite-Aid stores in Northeast LA, a total of eight LAPD vans and a flat bed truck were loaded with toys and given to Hollywood Division officers for their annual toy giveaway on December 10, 2011. Note that over 2000 children were given toys at this event and one would hope that at least that many thanks will make their way to Caroline and family---Scott Johnson. ** We should note that assisting Caroline in the toys pick up were Hollywood Division Officers Sgt. Darrell Davis and Lead Officers Ralph Sanchez, Robert Davenport, Danny Pesqueria and Irv Isabella.      
 Eagle Rock Wal greens Managers C. Sullivan and J. Edger (in light blue shirts) with LAPD officers. 
Highland Park Rite Aid Manager Sergio Gomez in center.
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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Hump Day Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for the Winter Solstice

CD 1 City Councilman Ed-benezer Scrooge Reyes at Lincoln Heights Holiday Pararde. Who is the guy (hint, Chief of Staff) sitting next to Ed-benezer?
** Bloggin Disclaimer: Please excuse the following politically incorrect statement, MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR WISHES TO ALL! And as we descend hump day towards the sacred day of Christ's birth on Sunday, we here at Mayor Sam would like to share pictures of multiple "events of giving", in the days leading up to Christmas. But meanwhile, lets not completely detach ourselves from detailing the dubious follies of those deserving of attention ..... like Councilman "Ed-benezer Scrooge Reyes".
In recent months leading up to this moment, Lincoln Heights residents have seen Councilman Ed-benezer Scrooge Reyes become the tool of the "Lincoln Heights1% Elites", who seek to monopolize all of the community events into one exclusive slush fund. Now we have learn that "Councilman Ed-benezer" is trying to "scrooge his way" out of paying for fireworks he promised the community at Lincoln Park in 2010 and 2011. While the pyrotechnic vendor deliver on the fireworks, Councilman Ed-benezer has been delinquent in paying close to $7,000 in total charges according to community activists. ** BTW, we want to wish the best for Killing Fields survivor and US Navy veteran Ben Lee as his family endure their first Christmas, after Councilman Ed-benezer Scrooge Reyes sided with 7-eleven and saw his small business dream evicted for a corporate mini-mart. ** CD 1 2013 Elections note, Assemblyman Gill Cedillo has raised $50,000 for his city council campaign. 
** Mayor Antonio Villar wants Angelinos to endure more budget cuts ($1.1Million worth) to offset the costs of the "Flea Party Bug Out". This "budgetary dump" (without the plastic bag) should rile up the activists and prompt someone to suggest that the cost be past on to the likes of SEIU, George Soros and the President Barack Obama Campaign.
** More "Politics of Fireworks", it appears that some sort of miscommunication took place between the Coliseum Commission and City Councilman Bernard Parks over who would pay for $40,000 in fireworks sometime back.
** This just posted on the LA Weekly's Informer Blog which should surprise many (naught!) in the state political community. According to Gene Maddaus, state Democrats manipulated the redistricting process in California. Quick, grab the lawsuit paddles!
** Lastly, we were email this photo of a "new business" that open recently on Alhambra Road, near Fickett in El Sereno. Judging from the Security Guard on the premises, it may not be long before Alhambra Road becomes the latest "Hemp Highway in CD 14".
Growth Industry in Councilman Huizar's CD 14.
Your thoughts and Merry Chrsitmas!
Scott Johnson in CD 14.    


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Old Gray Hag Does Edward Padgett a Favor

Edward Padgett
Our blogging friend - and LA Times pressman for nearly forty years -Edward Padgett, was told by his employer that his services were no longer required.

Certainly the newspaper formerly known as The LA Times wasn't happy with Padgett's truthful missives at his blog. When an organization is failing and unable to revive itself, it lashes out.

Firing Ed Padgett won't help the Times save itself from itself. If anything, they've done Ed a favor by letting hop off a sinking ship before it takes on any water. And he should realize a nice settlement. I am sure the labor lawyers are lining up.

Ed Padgett is too talented, too cool and just too much of a nice guy that some enterprising venture will snatch him up quickly.

When the LA Times goes the way of the Herald Examiner, the 8-track tape and the buggy whip, we can say we remember it when AND we knew the guy who printed it!


Monday, December 19, 2011

51st Assembly District Candidate Arturo Chavez "Seeking a Parade of Contributions".

Assemblyman Gil Cedillo's District Director and Candidate for the 51st assembly District Arturo Chavez riding in the Lincoln Heights Holidays Parade.
Blogger's Notes: Many within the activist community of what is the newly drawn 51st Assembly District, had wonder what had become of Assemblyman Gil Cedillo's longtime staffer Arturo Chavez's campaign to succeed his boss in Sacramento in 2013, two words Kinde Durfee. As LA Weekly's Gene Maddaus greatly exposes in the current edition of the "Weekly of Record", Chavez and many other democrats were victims of Durkee's financial shell games. Now Chavez and others have been force to step up their fundraising efforts as illistrated by Chavez get together tomorrow evenining on Mt. Washington---Scott Johnson. 
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The Politics of Redistricting

As the City Council takes a two week break from legislating, the process of redistricting is still getting plenty attention as Los Angeles Time Columnist Jim Newton gives it some op-ed love today and revisits some of Councilman Bernard Parks talking points regarding Councilman Wesson's "backroom dealings" via the strong arming of staffer and City of Los Angeles Redistricting Eecutive Director Andrew Westall.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
But the price for Councilman Parks in his redistricting beef with Councilman Wesson may come after the new year when "Council President Wesson" changes committee assignments, which could see Parks lose his Chairmanship of the Budget Committee.   
And as a afterthought, what could Council President Wesson get from the strong-arming work of his staffer/Redistricting Commission ED Andrew Westall?
Think of a CD 10 with all of Koreatown within its boundaries and prime for some arm-twisting requests for campaign contributions from its City Council President/ Councilperson.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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Friday, December 16, 2011

TGIF Afternoon Political News Dump 12-16-11: Saying Goodbye to Council President Eric "Tender Lover" Garcetti

 City Council President Eric Garcetti's Flea Party friends in better times 
 Piano players make "tender lovers".
Garcetti willing to lower himself for his brother and sisters in the city family.
The who's who of the City of Los Angeles Insider Community gather at City Hall today to say goodbye to the  "tender lover" of the city's family. Whether it was union leaders, fellow politicos, business leaders, Hollywood developers, gadflys or assorted hanger ons, everyone in the insider community wanted to be on record saying good things about the "son of Gil" (** especially if somehow this kid becomes mayor in 2013). But the best tribute came from comedian Jimmy Kimmel as reported by the insider blogger of City Hall, Alice Walton.
“It really impressed me that everyone seems to like this guy and it’s easy to understand why everyone likes him — because he cares, he’s a wonderful piano player, he’s a very tender lover. Was I not suppose to mention that?,” Kimmel said, setting the tone for the speeches.

** Former CD 15 City Councilwoman now Congresswoman Janice Hahn, just does not have the heart to choose between LAPD Lead Officer Joe Buscaino or Assemblyman Warrren Furutani, to replace her at City Hall. But we should note Hahn visited Buscaino's Campaign Party on the night of the primary and said he could go all the way. On the other hand, Hahn needs all the union money she can get to win her current congressional campaign. Thus, no endorsement with Furutani the loser.
** KCET's So Cal Connected will air another episode on HACLA this evening at 8:30 PM Expect after New Years to see the scandals connections to various politicos to become more defined.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14    

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Morning Briefs on the Los Angeles Political Machine for Friday

Great Friday to all angelinos as they wake up knowing that the former "Pot Hole King" Mayor Antonio Villar has returned from his Asia travels as the self-proclaim "Salesman in Chief of the City of Los Angeles". While Mayor Villar touts the economic benefits of his foray to Asia, no word whether this person below is the "Official Bill Collector of the City of Los Angeles".
** HACLA is not the only public entity to attempt secret payouts of hush/settlement money. State Senate of leaders in Sacramento secretly approved a $120,000 settlement for a legislated staffer who accuse indicted State Senator Roderick Wright of inappropriate comments.
** Three minors were arrested for breaking into the office space of Legacy LA at the Hazard Park Armory. One of the minors was a client of Legacy which verified rampant rumors that these break ins were "inside jobs".So far no word on the punishment that the minors face or whether crimes against a "connected Non-Profits in CD 14" have penalty enhancements.

** While the cost rises regarding the toxic brownfield around City Hall, choices on how to repair the damage from Occupy LA are gaining traction within City Hall.

** For the second time, Councilman Jose Huizar's Broadway Streetcar has lost out on federal funding but Los Angeles Streetcar CEO Dennis Allen states that the project is still a go for 2015.

Your thoughts.............
Scott Johnson in CD 14                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Outtakes from CD 14 Northeast Edition: "Eagle Rock Patch Interview with Councilman Huizar and fears of retaliation on York Blvd via the Boulevard Sentinel"

The Official Billboard (paid for by "Big Billboard") of "Outtakes from CD 14".
HI ARTURO!! The Official Councilman Huizar Staff "Observer" of "Outtakes from CD 14" Arturo Gonzalez. With help of LAPD, Gonzalez keeps watch on CD 14 constituents to update their "Loyalty and Influence" listing (Click on photo).  
CD 14 City Councilman Jose Huizar contemplating the answers to questions in recent video interview with Aaron Proctor and Ajay Singh of the Eagle Rock Patch.
Hola from the "cut and paste underground" of CD 14 where the act of stating the political truth is grounds for the following; removal from CD 14 email blast list, no turkeys from Huizzy for your CBO, a visit from a Building & Safety employee with cash only invoice and the dreaded down-scoring on the CD 14 Constituent Discrimination List ...... and judging from the recent "acts of objective journalism" from the Eagle Rock Patch and Boulevard Sentinel respectively, the list of retribution against those perceived to be disloyal to Councilman Huizar, is bound to grow.
First, we want to spotlight the recent Eagle Rock Patch interview of Councilman Huizar by Aaron Proctor and Ajay Singh at his City Hall office. The two part interview which we link to here (1) and here (2)  was by no means an exercise in journalistic softball and as the video shows, provided some uncomfortable moments for the Princeton Graduate (especially in explaining his attempted retaliation against Colombo's Steakhouse).
Second, Boulevard Sentinel Editor and Publisher Tom Topping does yeoman's work in getting to the root of the Second Saturday NELA Artwalk Controversy (which we posted on here previously) and the role of the CD 14 Eagle Rock Council Office. Topping gets many of the principals players in the saga to speak and the constant theme is the fear of retaliation from CD 14 as this passage illustrates.
Bike ride organizer Joseph Bray-Ali had reacted to MorYork's message by posting his disdain for CD14's actions. Soon after, he was pressured by CD14 to retract his statement about CD14 threatening to institute city fees, which the councilman's office categorically denied. He was reluctant to speak out for fear the councilman would retaliate by sending an army of inspectors to his storefront business (which everybody knows happens all the time). He did, however, confirm Mallman's perception that the gist of  CD14's communications consisted of fear mongering about "looming liability" issues for gallery night organizers and participants like the MorYork. Joseph was still upset and discouraged and said he is re-thinking the associated gallery night bike ride and may cancel it altogether for at least November.
We post Topping's article in whole after the jump.

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"Another Soulvine Thursday" via Columnist Betty Pleasant, 12-15-11

Its time for "Another Soulvine Thursday", a bloggin feature of Mayor Sam that brings you the wit and prose of longtime African-American Journalist/ Columnist Betty Pleasant. In this week's edition, will Betty stand by her ideal Assemblyman turn City Councilperson Candidate Warren Furutani in CD 15, after new City Council President Herb Wesson endorsed "the cop"Joe Buscaino for City Council? Or will Betty stick to her predictable lamenting of all things City Councilman Bernard Parks? Find out after the "Coliseum jump".
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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

"The Laura Chick vs. the Valley Greuel Cat Fight" on HACLA

Which one is Laura Chick and the Valley Greuel?
If anyone needed more proof that a fiscal white wash of the latest scandal at HACLA is on-going, then listen to this recent exchange (or cat fight) between the two last City Controllers of Los Angeles Laura Chick and Wendy "The Valley Greuel".
Recorded on Monday via KCRW's "Which Way LA" with Warren Onley, the premise of the program is whether the Valley Greuel waited too long in auditing HACLA after the first damning report of the infamous housing agency by KCET (she was waiting for Mayor Villar's permission).
Former City Controller Laura Chick takes the Valley Greuel and others in city government to task for not responding promptly to investigate the books at HACLA soon after KCET first expose ....... and the claws begin to fly.
Interesting to note in the KCRW segment is the comments by KCET's Laurel Erickson of the smooth cooperation between HACLA and the Controller Office once the white wash, whoops audit was initiated.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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The "Great 2011 HACLA White Wash" via the "Valley Greuel".

OH MY GOD!! Totally a misuse of public funds at HACLA (** except when warranted by Mayor Villar's cronies).
The rush to white-wash the latest scandal at the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles presses on as the likes of City Controller Wendy "The Valley" Greuel gets the "snarky treatment" from the LA Weekly and repudiation from Ron Kaye respectively.
Meanwhile, we have a source close to HUD in Washington D.C. who states that federal officials are watching closely the developments with the latest scandal to hit HACLA. Last evening, this blogger attended a joint HACLA/ LAPD meeting with various stakeholders and CBO's. which touch upon the new urgency for transparency within HACLA.
But while the Mayor and his willing enablers at City Hall move forward in their white washing endeavors, their will be in the days ahead, more revelations that will grow this scandal to a level that will meet with a federal grand jury.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

New City Council President Herb Wesson endorses Joe Buscaino in CD 15 Special Election Runoff

 Mayor Sam has just learned that incoming City Council President Herb Wesson has endorsed Joe Buscaino to replace Congresswoman Janice Hahn as CD 15's City Councilperson. Press release will be posted shortly.Via Councilman Herb Wesson,
“I know Joe is the right man for this job,” Councilman Wesson said. “Joe will bring a fresh perspective, new energy, and great leadership to L.A. City Hall. He’s the right person to represent the diverse communities that make up Council District 15.”
Wonder what LA Wave Newspaper Columnist Betty Pleasant will think of Councilman Wesson's endorsement of Joe Buscaino over Assemblyman Warren Furutani?
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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The Great City of Vernon/ Senator Kevin De Leon $60 Million Payoff, ** and its dubious Legacy

Blogger's notes: We like to commend the great work of Los Angeles Times reporter Sam Allen for exposing to a larger audience, on what will become "The Great City of Vernon/ Senator Kevin De Leon Payoff". As we noted at Mayor Sam in an earlier post, State Senator Kevin De Leon "one up" his San Diego buddy former State Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez by "suggesting" that the city Of Vernon set aside $60 Million dollars to be parcel out to surrounding municipalities and yes, "connected non-profits". The big winner among the connected non-profits was the politico-created Legacy LA which was "selected" for a $5 Million dollar grant. Since our earlier report, Legacy LA has lost its GRYD Prevention Contract and been targeted by multiple break-ins that has seen rampant vandalism and thief of property, not exactly a great organization to be investing millions of dirty Vernon dollars---Scott Johnson.
 The ex. City of Vernon Power Plant Lobbyist/Assemblyman/CD 14 City Councilman Richard Alatorre with former staffer now Legacy LA Executive Director Maria Lou Calanche. How much influence did Alatorre have in Legacy LA's selection as part of the "Great Payoff"? 
Note the collaboration of Richard Alatorre and Senator Kevin De Leon in the recent Legacy LA fundraiser that was partially supported by 7-Eleven which wants to increase beer and wine sale in sensitive communities.
BTW, this person wins the political perception award.

Ken Murray at 8:29 AM December 13, 2011 from the Times comments.The piece of the puzzle that is not mentioned is how the $60 million will be spent.  Sure, on various parks. sure.But in reality, it will be on various contractors, or relatives, or friends, that when examined, will be seen to be giving lavishly to the same pols that accomplished this shakedown.  And shakedown it was. (Something Richard, Lou and Kevin know all to well.)
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14.

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Monday, December 12, 2011

Mayor Villar wants Housing Department GM Doug Guthrie named CEO of HACLA

City of  Los Angeles Housing Department General manager Doug Guthrie (to right of Mayor Villar).
Let the white-wash of HACLA commence ............ as Mayor Villar wants to replace now HACLA COO Ken Simmons with the former COO of the Chicago Housing Authority and current City of LA Housing Department GM Doug Guthrie, according to KCET.
And once the HACLA Board of Commissioners adhere to the selection script crafted by the mayor's office, Mayor Villar wants these reforms undertaken (or the "political undertaker" will register you to vote at Evergreen Cemetery).
Once the Board appoints an Interim CEO, Villaraigosa would like them to work with the agency’s new leadership on the following critical reforms:

- A top to bottom review of policies and personnel at HACLA;

- The implementation of systematic controls over travel, meal and other expenditures and over the use of agency purchasing cards;

- Immediately begin working with Los Angeles City Controller Wendy Greuel on the audit process and ensure the full cooperation from all HACLA staff in this 

- A review of the agency’s Code of Ethics and, if necessary, the implementation of new provisions to strengthen it.
Its time for a federal Grand Jury/HUD overhaul.

Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14

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HACLA's Ken Simmons to appear before City Council on Tuesday

Grandstanding alert tomorrow via Councilman Dennis Zine and Controller "Valley Greuel"
Blogger's Notes: According to KCET via their second expose of the dysfunctional HACLA Corporate Culture, City Councilman and City Controller Candidate Dennis Zine has called HACLA former Acting CEO Ken Simmons to appear before his City Hall committee hearing tomorrow at City Hall. Yet, lets not lose sight that corruption at HACLA goes back beyond the time of Rudy Montiel and Ken Simmons as "Fraud Watcher" posted this on Mayor Sam recently---Scott Johnson.
The tragedy is that millions of dollars have been wasted by HACLA from 1996-2011 that should have been available for affordable housing.Instead the following failed the people and need to be held accountable by the people:
1. HUD and especially HUD OIG who failed to prosecute HACLA and in fact took criminal cases out of the hands of DA Cooley involving HACLA/Mayor&Councilmembers (Taracena cases).
2. HUDOIG/FBI who failed to interview any HACLA whistleblowers who had evidence against HACLA staff and failed to follow up on charges made in court documents.

3 Mainstream media- (especially LA Times) who failed to report HACLA whistleblower cases and the millions spent of federal and city funds persecuting Whistlblowers. By the way all whistleblowers settled their cases and their charges are still public records- media could have easily followed up on these serious charges and ended the Montiel administration years ago.
4. Mayor and Council at fault because they knew 2007 investigations involved possible involvement by some on council and supporters receiving illegal funds from HACLA via "questionable-non existent" contracts.Mayor did not change HACLA Bd until KCET TV report this year!

5. City Attorney office has spent millions defending HACLA practices and in fact had full time staff in charge of internal audit (?) and finances (?). Why did city Atty allow all of these millions to be spent this way? Dont Attys have ethics and know the difference that their ultimate clients are the citizens and not a questionable agency?

Yes the system of checks and balances broke down and while everyone in the system kept their jobs and got bonuses, yet many LA poor remain in substandard housing and millions missing. No one was held accountable but ethical whistlblowers were persecuted by the system (like Enron,Madoff Fast and Furious)

This Hacla mess was very preventable but it will take some guts-watch out for Jordan Downs and other developments follow the money/contracts--remember HACLA adm and BD have development/builder background and other HACLA devs.

In summary DA Cooley should take over any audit/investigation of HACLA inorder to avoid conflict of interest.
December 07, 2011 10:26 AM

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Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Zorro Marxist latest "Dacha of Eligibility" in CD 7/AD 39

CD 7/2-AD 39 City Councilman Richard AlarCON.
CD 7/2-AD 39 City councilman Richard "Zorro Marxist" AlarCON and wife have gone Dacha shopping again in the hopes that the indicted lawmaker/breaker can remain gainfully employ on the behalf of the 99%. The dail News has the specifics but one hopes that voters someday will put an end to this political character.
Your thoughts ..............
Scott Johnson in CD 14


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Kevin James Joins Michael On-Air Tonight

This evening I will be broadcasting live from Tujunga's hottest new comfort food eatery, Olde Towne's Comfort and Joy Cafe at 10024 Commerce.  Mayoral candidate and radio talk show host, Kevin James, is hosting a meet and greet as part of one of his many campaign swings through the Foothills communities of Los Angeles.

In the meantime, Frank and David will be back in the studio with even more fun and frivolity during the fastest fifty minutes in radio!

Listen live at 8:00 p.m. PST by clicking here!

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