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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Another Constituent Discontent Testimonial from Councilman Huizar's CD 14, via Dan Hughley

Another irate constituent speaks out about CD 14 staff interaction/services.

** Blogger's Note: Thanks to Mr. Dan Hughley, we bring this teachable moment on the state of constituent services in CD 14, especially if your ratings on the "constituent discrimination lists", do not score in Councilman Huizar's favorable range (3 for loyalty, 2 and up for influence). For Mr. Hughley, his stance on the Medical Marijuana issue, probably played a row in an absence of an "respectable reply" from CD 14 staff. But regardless of his issue and stance, this level of constituent services is reality in a council district, where access is predicated on your influence .... and loyalty to the "Princeton Graduate, Dear Charro"---Scott Johnson in CD 14.

Mr. Huizar,

I didn't receive the response I hoped for.  I did not receive a respectful response from a community organizer and leader who I voted for, who I helped elect to his job now and whose very large salary is paid by my tax dollars.  I didn't even receive a computer generated generic robo-response.  Instead, I received a hostile phone call from an angry sounding young woman just minutes after I sent my previous email.  I was outside walking my dogs through my neighborhood so I was unable to write down her name.  The young lady quickly demanded to know which community in district 14 I live in exactly.  She demanded to know why I needed to speak to you and she refused to answer one simple question:  

"When does the councilman open himself up to speak with members of his community about their concerns in a public format?"  

Instead of answering, she asked if I had visited one of the field offices.  I told her in fact I did.  I told her I was given contact information for the councilman from the Eagle Rock field office when I visited it last week.  

Evasion of this simple question scares me.  What is the point of a city council and its members if it is not to represent the voices of the people in the community?

The young lady who called me on Thursday got me to reluctantly voice to her my concerns after repeating to her that it was none of her business.  I told her I wanted to know why you, Mr. Huizar want to take away my ability to safely and legally purchase my medicine, my medical marijuana.  She told me Mr. Coca handles those types of claims and he would be contacting me (which at this point, he has not).  I again asked why you wouldn't meet with your community to answer concerns.  I told her, I don't need to speak one on one, I don't need you to buy me lunch.  But, I do need you to do the job I and many others pay you for.  The number of signatures on the petitions turned in against the measure you authored to ban medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles tells me that I'm not the only person in this community with these concerns.  I don't care that this has been voted down and reversed in the city council, I'm guessing one of the two "no" votes in the 10-2 reversal last week came from you, Councilman Huizar.  I know this week the final decision will be made and I'm sure you'll be fighting for your measure to move forward. (** actually he did not shoe up to vote---S.J.)

The amount of taxes collected by the city for medical marijuana is not a small figure.  Jose Huizar, you are to thank for bringing those tax dollars to the city of Los Angeles.  You helped to introduce measures to tax medical marijuana.  In fact, you've done nothing but give medical marijuana dispensaries a hard time since you took office in 2005.  Now you want to take that money away from our city and put a lot of hard working, law-abiding members of your community out of work?  Do you think people will stop buying and using marijuana if you succeed with your prohibition?  No.  When it is not available in a safe environment, people will be making shady drug deals on the streets and the jails will be crowded once again with marijuana offenders, police will be wasting their time busting people buying doctor prescribed medication, which they need.  All of this wastes tax dollars instead of collecting tax dollars.

I'm not just some pothead.  I need my medical marijuana which I legally purchase (in district 14) for chronic insomnia.  I have had this insomnia since I was a little boy and I hate taking pills and other sleep aids because of the chemicals and side effects.  I discovered some time ago that marijuana is a natural, safe and effective way for me to get to sleep at night so I can go to work the next day with a clear head, ready to work.  Being awake for several days at a time can take a toll on a person, it becomes a safety issue for you and those around you.  It becomes very frustrating laying in bed not being able to sleep.  My medical marijuana has no side effects.

My marijuana is not to party with, I am a professional person who works very hard 7 days a week for his family.  I don't use any illegal drugs and I don't consume alcohol, ever.  I never drive after using my medication, never open my medication in public, never sell or distribute it to others and only use my medication at home, in a controlled and safe environment.

Now, if you want to further regulations while keeping my medicine available in a safe and convenient way, I'd possibly support that. If you wish to further tax my medication, I'd consider the arguments and possibly support that as well, depending on the facts and where the money will go.  But this is a civilized conversation you seem to have no interest in starting or participating in.

Mr. Huizar, I'm disappointed in you.  I'm sure Mr. Coca is great at his job but he isn't the person I voted to office, you are.  Mr. Coca isn't the one who authored a ban and who has waged constant attacks on medical marijuana dispensaries. (Is he?)  (** That would give a whole new meaning to Coca's nickname "Ricky Coca Puffs", but I digress---S.J.)
I get very nervous when a politician doesn't stand up for themselves and can't answer questions or face their constituents regarding a controversial decision they have made.  It makes me wonder, who's interest is driving the matter if it is not your own will and your passion?  Who is pulling the strings? Clearly, again with regards to the petitions, you don't have the majority of your community members interest in mind.  

Furthermore, why do you have people who handle "types of claims"?  How many different groups exactly have you offended in your short time in office?  It doesn't take much time on Google to find a lot of controversy surrounding you and your term as city councilman.  I read it subjectively and with an open mind but after the way I've been ignored and then poorly treated by your staff, I'm starting to believe what I read about you. (** we call them facts on the blog while Huizzy calls them lies----S.J.) 

Finally Mr. Huizar, since you have installed blockers to keep from having to answer to the community for whom you make decisions, I've forwarded this email chain to the Mayor and bcc copies to members of the press.  You don't have to answer me but we all have to answer to someone.  I'll let them judge.

Good day and if you decide to run again, good luck.  You're going to need it, you've now offended members of your own party. 

Daniel Hughley
Los Angeles District 14 Resident and Voter

On Fri, Oct 5, 2012 at 5:22 PM, Dan Hughley <d.r.hughley@gmail.com> wrote:
Dear Councilman Huizar,

I'm really growing concerned that my assumption is true, I don't understand why a member of the community you represent doesn't get the respect or courtesy of a return email, from you or any member of your staff.  I'm not asking for a personal one on one meeting, I'm asking if there is a place you can be addressed to answer concerns of your citizens.  Or should I send my question in email form?  Although, at this point, I have little faith the email would be even read.

I'm giving the entire staff a chance to respond, they've been cc'd on this email along with a forward of my previous email.  

Not holding my breath.

Daniel Hughley
14th District LA Resident and Voter

Translated by Google Translator:

Estimado Concejal Huizar,

Estoy cada vez más preocupado de que mi suposición es cierta, no entiendo por qué un miembro de la comunidad que representan no recibe el respeto o cortesía de un correo electrónico de retorno, de usted o cualquier miembro de su personal. No estoy pidiendo una personal en una reunión, me estoy preguntando si hay un lugar que puede ser dirigida a responder a las preocupaciones de sus ciudadanos. ¿O debo enviar mi pregunta en forma de correo electrónico? Aunque, en este punto, tengo poca fe el correo electrónico sería incluso leer.

Le voy a dar a todo el personal la oportunidad de responder, han sido cc'd en este correo electrónico junto con un delantero de mi correo electrónico anterior.

No conteniendo la respiración.

Daniel Hughley
14o distrito de La Residentes y votantes

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Dan Hughley <d.r.hughley@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 1:16 PM
Subject: Availability to meet
To: Councilmember.Huizar@lacity.org

Hi Councilman,

I am interested in discussing a very important issue facing our beautiful 14th district and the great city of Los Angeles.  Is there any type of open forum that you have for discussion with your constituents? 

I've been attempting to contact you on your facebook page but have not received a response.  Please acknowledge me,  I am a voter in the 14th district who voted for you in the past but as of now, I would rather vote for anyone with a heartbeat than you.

I want to give you the benefit of the doubt, because we are both democrats and I believe we can come to some sort of understanding after a brief  professional and educated discussion and clear this up.  That is my hope but first, you need to reach back to a member of your community who is reaching out to ask a question before he jumps to the conclusion that you don't care about what the people you represent have to say.

Thank you for your time and I await your response,

Daniel Hughley

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