ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER BACK ROOM CITY HALL DEAL IN THE WORKS
Local neighborhood councils have had their eye on MTA’s plans to turn the Orange Line parking lot into a mixed-use housing development but if they had a clue about what”s going on behind the scene they would be really worried. Rick Orlov in the Daily News reports JPL West is the front-runner to get approval from the MTA board. But there’s heavy back room politicking going on with proposals from Henry Cisneros and Nick Patsaouras competing for the lucrative deal. And then there’s the specter of the Valley’s No. 1 fixer Councilman Tony Cardenas ready to step in.
“They can choose who they want,” Cardenas said. “But, when it comes
down to it, the project has to go through the city planning process.
That’s where I will make my objections known.”
WOULDN’T IT BE NICE IF WE ALL GOT PRIVATE WARNING LETTERS WHEN WE VIOLATE THE LAW — LIKE LAWMAKERS
The state’s (Un)Fair Political Practices Commission, in theory the public’s watchdog on official corruption, has reached a new low with its decision to stop even the pretense of enforcing campaign finance laws. Patrick McGreevy in the Times reports the FPPC, now run by (who else?) ex-legislator Ross Johnson has decided electoral fraud isn’t really worth more than a warning letter without public notice. Forget fines or prosecution. Under Johnson, the number of warning letters has jumped tenfold from 30 to 294, the amount of fines levied fallen in half.
IS THIS THE 21ST CENTURY? IS L.A. READY FOR BICYCLES ON THE STREETS?
The road rage incident that nearly killed a cyclist in Mandeville Canyon recently has sparked interest in whether L.A. ought to do something about safety on our broken streets. Martha Groves in the Times takes a look at the building controversy and notes the city has hired Alta Planning and Design, a transportation planning
consultant based in San Rafael, Calif., to study the issue. “Los Angeles is a very challenging environment to ride in, given the
condition of roadways, the storm grates that will eat your wheels, the
lack of formal bike lanes or bike paths, and just a lack of respect and
a lack of awareness from motorists about the rights of bicyclists,”
said Matt Benjamin, an Alta transportation planner. The starting point ought to be the Santa Monica’s proposed transportation plan which seeks to slow vehicles, speed public transit and make the streets safe for cyclists and pedestrians of all ages.
DAN WALTERS GOES AFTER ANTONIO’S BROKEN PROMISE ON HIRING COPS
The top Sacramento commentator wrote about Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s
vow to put 1,000 more cops on the city’s dangerous streets and
proposed to raise trash collection fees to provide the money. “Every
new dollar residents pay for trash pickup,” the mayor promised in a
city news release, “will be used to put more officers on the streets.” Walters think people ought to know he wasn’t telling the truth.