This month, we adopted the City's $9.9 billion budget, providing more funding to address our homelessness crisis, creating more temporary emergency shelter and funding more encampment cleanup teams. Meanwhile, the State has nearly $9 billion in surplus funds and I joined our Mayor, County and State elected officials demanding more funding from the state to address our homelessness crisis. While we’re doing more than ever before on the City and County level, it's time for the State to treat homelessness like the moral crisis it is.
On a local level, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority released their 2018 Homeless Count, which showed people experiencing homelessness declined 5% in the City and 3% in the County. While this is good news, the overall population is way too high still and challenges remain, even neighborhood by neighborhood. But we’re doing better overall as a City/County and our efforts are starting to take hold.
The fight continues to protect families and our children from contaminated soil from the Exide Technologies debacle. In May, I issued legislation calling on Barbara Lee, the Director of the State's Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), to come before the City’s Planning & Land Use Management Committee, which I chair, to explain the agency’s incredibly slow cleanup efforts. It is unacceptable that only 270 parcels of the initial 2,500 most contaminated sites identified by the DTSC have been cleaned and I will continue to fight against this environmental injustice.
In May, we also celebrated an amazing amount of community improvements completed and underway throughout CD14. In El Sereno, we are improving Soto Street, Eastern Avenue and Alhambra Avenue with great community support and participation. In Boyle Heights, we broke ground on safety improvements to protect children and families walking around Breed Street Elementary, Sheridan Street Elementary and the Soto Street Corridor. In Northeast LA, we joined students from San Pascual Elementary to celebrate improvements at San Pascual Park, and had a blast with dog lovers for a groundbreaking on the new Eagle Rock Rec Center’s Dog Park. And in, DTLA’s Fashion District, we cut the ribbon on $2 million in street improvements, part of our DTLA FWD initiative. Finally, I introduced legislation to completely overhaul construction traffic management in our city. Pedestrians, bicyclists and commuters need real-time and up-to-the-minute info on street and sidewalk closures due to construction, filming and other uses. My motion will create a real-time, online citywide site where Angelenos can check for new construction closure notices.
Please read below for more details on some of the things we’re working on. As always, please contact my office with any questions, comments or concerns. And please follow me on social media on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram!
Community Breaks Ground on $5 Million in Major Safety Improvements around Boyle Heights Elementary Schools
Councilmember Huizar works with City to bring $5 million in safety improvements for ‘Neighborhood Friendly Streets’ around Breed Street and Sheridan Street Elementary Schools.
Councilmember Huizar issued legislation via a motion Friday calling on the Director of the State of California’s Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) to come before Huizar’s City Planning Committee to explain the agency’s incredibly slow response to the largest toxic cleanup in state history related to violations by Exide Technologies in Vernon. Exide, a battery recycling center, which polluted Boyle Heights and surrounding communities with lead and other contaminants for decades, was allowed by the DTSC to operate without a full permit for more than 30 years.Read more
In March, we introduced legislation to create a Youth Development Strategy to help our kids across the entire City – the motion which I co-introduced with Councilmembers Rodriguez and Buscaino, asks for, among other things, the creation of a department, commission or office dedicated solely to assisting our youth with targeted services, jobs and opportunities to succeed. Our youth are our greatest resource and we must put them first.
We also broke ground on a historic monument honoring the millions of Mexican nationals, including my father, who served in the Bracero Program, a US work program that assisted the US to meet work-shortage needs from 1942 and 1964.
And our efforts to address the City’s homelessness crisis continue as the City Council approved a full report to my motion calling for a triage-like response equal to the scale of the crisis in Skid Row – where more than 2,000 individuals sleep on the streets unsheltered nightly – the largest such encampment in the nation.
While housing from Measure HHH is being built, those experiencing homelessness need shelter now. The City Council also approved my El Pueblo shelter motion, establishing trailers along with support services to house our homeless population around El Pueblo at a City-owned parking lot.
We need similar emergency programming and housing implemented in Skid Row and throughout the entire City. I am thankful that a motion by two colleagues that I work with closely on homeless issues, Councilmembers Bonin and Harris-Dawson, will also study an emergency housing plan in all neighborhoods throughout the City.
While CD14 is home to the most supportive housing units for homeless individuals in the City, I was proud to join my colleagues in pledging at least 222 units of permanent supportive housing every three years in each council district. Measure HHH, which I co-authored, ensures that we pay for homeless supportive housing together, and the 222 pledge ensures that we all build housing together throughout the City – including areas with little to no such housing currently.
Please read below for more details on some of the things we’re working on, often with your friends and neighbors (and maybe even you!). As always, please contact my office with any questions, comments or concerns. And please follow me on social media on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram!
The CD14 CRA bond funds will allow Self Help Graphics & Art, established in Boyle Heights in 1970, to fill funding gap and enable them to purchase property they currently rent and remain in Boyle Heights for years to come.Read more
The community of Boyle Heights has suffered for too long from the severe, pervasive and distinctive odors from Vernon facilities.Read more
Councilmember Huizar works with City to bring an additional $3.9 million in street improvements to residential areas surrounding First Street’s Metro Gold LineRead more
Councilmember José Huizar was joined today by key Boyle Heights community groups and volunteers to begin an extensive outreach effort to inform Boyle Heights’ rent-controlled residents of their rights. Boyle Heights has a high-rate of renters, approximately 75%, and of those, about 88% in approximately 16,000 units are protected against high-rent increases by the Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO), which provides rent-control for multi-unit rental housing in the City that was built in 1978 or earlier.Read more
Councilmember Huizar awarded $20,000 in academic scholarships to students from Roosevelt and Garfield before kickoff in one of the longest running high school football rivalries west of the Mississippi.Read more