President Obama calls it "our Sputnik moment", this chance to invest in the future and create a green energy economy. That was the focus of the LA Business Council's Clean Energy Forum Monday, January 31st at LAPD headquarters. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. -- a tireless environmental advocate and litigator -- was the keynote speaker, outlining a world where energy is free and clean. But first, he says we need to build the infrastructure to deliver those wind and solar-produced electrons to the energy market. The Mayor, several councilmembers, the city controller and the DWP's new General Manager were on the panel.
We held a send-off on the City Hall South Lawn for the Compton Cricket Club -- the first All American Cricket Team. Compton's Homies and the Popz have been playing cricket for 15 years and credit the sport with saving them from the gang culture that ruled their neighborhoods. Now, for the first time, they will compete in a cricket exhibition/promotional tour in Australia and help raise funds for local charities. This will mark the first time an All American team has toured Australia. The historic journey "down under" is designed to increase the efforts of the Compton Cricket Club to end violence at home and around the globe and give young people an alternative to gangs. An exciting addition to the club is "Hip-Hop Cricket Rap", produced and performed by team-members Theo and Isaac Hayes, which transfers Cricket language and culture into Ghetto vernacular and style. FOR A SAMPLE, CLICK HERE
Hundreds of students signed-on to an anti-bullying and name-calling pledge at Thomas Starr Middle School. The pledge acknowledged that bullying and calling fellow students names is wrong and - by signing it - students pledged not to bully or name-call. The oath said that students would do their best not to bully other students or call them hurtful names; would intervene - if they safely could - in situations where other students are being called names; and would support efforts to end bullying and name-calling once and for all.
From January 20-23, a world of art is on display at the Los Angeles Convention Center West Hall. It's the 16th Annual LA Art Show, with art from here at home and abroad. China is the featured country of this year's exhibition, flaunting art in many styles and media. It's a feast for the eyes! click here for more information
Hundreds gathered at the corner of 3rd Street and Alexandria Avenue on January 15th for the unveiling ceremony of Little Bangladesh. Councilmember LaBonge was joined by Mayor Villaraigosa, City Council President Eric Garcetti, Council President Pro-Tem Jan Perry and LA County Sheriff Lee Baca for the festivities, which featured the unveiling of a sign designating the five-block area around 3rd and Alexandria Little Bangladesh. The ceremony marked the culmination of a nearly 10-year effort among Bangladeshi-Americans to have their neighborhood named.
On March 8th, 2011, a new city ordinance takes effect, prohibiting smoking in virtually all outdoor restaurant areas where food is served. There will be a massive education and outreach campaign so that restaurants and patrons understand the new restrictions before the grace-period expires on March 8th. As Chairman of the Arts, Parks, Health and Aging Committee, the health and safety of city residents is a huge priority. Exposure to second-hand cigarette smoke causes approximately 50,000 deaths per year in the United States. That's 50,000 deaths that could be prevented. I applaud Starbucks for taking the lead in this cultural sea-change, banning smoking in all patio areas at their stores throughout California. In a city where the weather is as good as LA, outdoor dining is a birth-right that's being marred by second-hand smoke. Let's clear the air and enjoy our meal or coffee in the Los Angeles sunshine.
Travelers, community members and tenants can now dial one centralized number -- 310-649-LAWA (310-649-5292) – to report a complaint, ask questions, and get information about the many construction projects underway at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The new Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) Construction Hotline operates 24-hours a day, seven days a week. Inquiries and complaints can also be submitted via an online form by going to http://www.laxdevelopment.org/ and clicking on the Contact Information link.
Calls to the hotline will be returned within 15 minutes. On-line inquiries and complaints will receive a response the next business day. LAWA has established this construction hotline and on-line inquiry process in an effort to provide timely and quality information during the major modernization/construction projects at LAX.
LAX is the seventh busiest airport in the world, offering more than 565 daily flights to 81 destinations in the U.S. and over 1,000 weekly nonstop flights to 65 international destinations on over 75 carriers. LAX is part of a system of three Southern California airports – along with LA/Ontario International and Van Nuys general aviation – that are owned and operated by Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), a department of the City of Los Angeles.
My staff and I fanned out on Friday and Saturday January 7th and 8th to clean-up neighborhoods in Council District 4. From North Hollywood to Koreatown ... mid-Wilshire to Hollywood ... Los Feliz to Silver Lake, we really cleaned-up. Many thanks to the Bureau of Sanitation, which provided several trucks and drivers to help us pick-up bulky items, such as old couches, mattresses, assorted furniture and rugs, old toys and construction waste left on the streets and sidewalks. We also removed discarded Christmas Trees, palm-fronds and other yard-waste. We cleaned-up several tons of debris from the streets and sidewalks of Los Angeles. It's amazing what you can do with a little cooperation and a lot of heavy-lifting.