This week, Council District 12 received the results for the 2018 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. The results show that our Neighborhoods FIRST strategy is working with a reduction of homelessness by almost 20% within Council District 12.
By funding both increased outreach services and code enforcement, our all-hands-on-deck approach is turning the tide by reducing the total number of individuals experiencing homelessness on our streets. This crisis is far from resolved, but Neighborhoods FIRST provides a blueprint for how we can help those living on our streets while protecting the health and safety of neighborhoods.
The 2018 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count surveyed 700 homeless individuals living within Council District 12. This is a reduction from 869 in 2017 and a peak of 906 in 2016.
Neighborhoods FIRST began in late 2016 with the Clean Streets Clean Starts Initiative which paired individuals experiencing homelessness with job skills training through a neighborhood beautification program. In exchange for attending regular neighborhood clean ups, participants received drug treatment, job training, food gift cards, and access to housing. The program model has since spread to communities across Los Angeles.
In 2017, Councilmember Mitchell Englander began directing office resources to fund additional deployments for LAPD HOPE teams and LA Sanitation workers. These teams work jointly with homeless outreach services to ensure that encampments don’t threaten public health and that individuals living on the street are given the option of immediate shelter and access to LAHSA’s Coordinated Entry System.
Additionally, Neighborhoods FIRST has involved launching public-private partnerships with the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission including fund raising for two mobile shower units to provide approximately 1500 showers per month per unit along with outreach services, Donuts & Donations drives to support the Mission, and the 250LA Project to engage local small businesses in supporting homeless services.
The full 2018 Greater Homeless Count is available on the LAHSA website.
This week, Councilmember Mitchell Englander joined LADWP Chief Operating Officer Marty Adams, LADWP Chief Sustainability Officer Nancy Sutley, Los Angeles County Business Coalition President Mary Leslie, Actor/Environmental Activists Ed Begley Jr. and Matt Walsh, and students from Porter Ranch Community School to introduce legislation calling for LADWP to explore options to install “floating solar” panels on Los Angeles reservoirs.
Floating solar is an emerging and extremely efficient form of renewable clean energy. By covering the surface of reservoirs, floating solar conserves water by reducing evaporation and prevents harmful algae growth by blocking sunlight. Additionally, there is no land costs associated with the installation and there is greater efficiency of output due to the cooling effect of water.
Los Angeles reservoirs provide hundreds of acres of local surface area that can be used as a platform for capturing solar energy. The initial pilot calls for approximately 11.6 MegaWatts of solar installation on DWP reservoirs. That is enough energy to power approximately 3,190 homes per year and the offset 15.9 million lbs. of CO2 emissions per year or the equivalent of removing 1,567, cars from the road. LADWP estimates that Los Angeles Reservoirs have an achievable potential of 53 MW which translates to the electrical use of 21,000 homes annually or the equivalent of taking 10,320 cars off the road.
According to the State Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), retail sellers and publicly owned utilities are required to procure 50 percent of their electricity from renewable energy resources by 2030.
Los Angeles is in a unique position to lead the country in the adoption of clean, renewable energy. With our geography, our climate, and our city-owned and operated utility, we have all the ingredients necessary to push for the wide-use and adoption of solar energy. By co-locating these panels on city-owned reservoirs, we eliminate the land-use cost and impacts of traditional solar panels.
On Thursday, the City Council unanimously passed the fiscal year 2017/18 Budget. As Chair of the Public Safety Committee and Vice Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee, I am most pleased with the resources that were provided to our sworn police officers and fire fighters in order to increase the City’s ability to keep our residents safe and to protect our communities.
For LAPD, we increased the number of police officers on patrol through a civilianization process that added back necessary crime solving support services, including technicians to staff our DNA, latent fingerprint and firearm units – helping to increase the solve rate for property crimes in addition to homicides while returning officers to the streets. We also accelerated the final phase of detention officer hiring to return police officers working in the jails back to patrol functions. Technology and equipment needs were also funded – including a replacement of the non-emergency phone systems at four Valley stations. Perhaps most significantly, we were able to reduce the overtime and pension burden of the Metro Transit Contract.
In the Fire Department, we increased fire fighter hiring and added Read more »
For residents who wish to relocate, the SoCal Gas Company is providing free, temporary housing accommodations, including locations that can accommodate residents with disabilities and people with access and functional needs. For residents with pets, the SoCal Gas Company has arranged pet-friendly locations. To receive temporary housing accommodations, call 404-497-6808.
For information regarding students and attendance inquiries, contact your child’s home school and their administrator. For Porter Ranch Community School, call (818) 709-7100. For Castlebay Lane Charter School, call (818) 360-1908. Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) – Northwest Local District will also have information regarding this issue, go to www.lausd.net.
This Monday, I join the Bureau of Engineering and the Department of Transportation to cut the ribbon on several new improvements to the intersection of Balboa Boulevard and San Fernando Road. Improvements to the intersection include the constructed two left turn lanes, a new dedicated lane for traffic heading south onto Balboa Blvd. and a new street light and traffic signal.
In 2007, we identified several projects along this Balboa Blvd corridor as being critical to mobility in Council District 12. The stretch of Balboa Boulevard between the 118 Freeway and Foothill Blvd is one of the most congested in the Valley during peak hours, with over 20,000 commuters passing through it daily.
This intersection serves as an alternative for commuters traveling to and from the Santa Clarita Valley, but we feel increased impacts when there is an incident on the freeway, or during long periods of heavy freeway construction.
Thank you to the City of Los Angeles’ Bureau of Engineering and Department of Transportation for helping to make these improvements a reality. These improvements will have a tremendous impact on the quality of life of local residents.
–Mitchell Englander, Councilmember Twelfth District
Temperatures reached over 100 degrees in the San Fernando Valley last week before cooling off. More heat waves will come this summer, so be ready!
During extreme heat, the City opens up hundreds of facilities to be utilized as cooling centers, including Senior Citizen Centers, most Recreation and Parks facilities, and City Libraries. They offer residents cold water, and a place to rest indoors in the air-conditioning. For more information on where all the cooling centers are located, call 3-1-1 or click here.
Drink plenty of water:
If you plan to be outdoors, take precautions to protect yourself from the sun and heat. Avoid the sun from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm when the sun’s burning rays are most intense. Reduce physical activity. Wear a wide-brimmed hat and light- colored, lightweight, loose-fitting clothes. Avoid hot, heavy meals and alcohol. Drink Gatorade or other non-caffeinated drinks with electrolytes. If you do not have air-conditioning, visit one of the City’s public pools or go to a public park to sit in the shade. Go to a shopping mall. You do not need to purchase anything, and there are plenty of places to sit.
Be Aware of Symptoms of Dehydration and Heat Stroke:
Symptoms of dehydration and heat stroke include dizziness, fatigue, faintness, headaches, muscle cramps and increased thirst. To learn more, click here.
Never Leave Pets or Kids Unattended in a Vehicle:
Leaving a child or a pet in a closed vehicle on a hot or sunny day, even with the windows cracked, can be fatal. On hot or sunny days, the temperature inside a car can be 50 degrees hotter than outside.