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Are you interested in trying something different? The RACO Program welcomes volunteers to become Reserve Animal Control Officers serving in the same capacity as our Animal Control Officers.
The program requires a commitment of 16 hours of volunteer service each month at any one of our six Animal Care Centers for 3 months prior to the first class. This commitment will provide a great opportunity to serve and observe. Prospective candidates will learn about care and handling of a variety of animals, interface with Center, Medical, and Field Staff, work with Supervisors and become familiar with day-to-day operations. For those that are already volunteering, you’ve already learned this – and much more!
During this three-month commitment, there will be an application process. Applicants must be a minimum of 21 years of age, a high school graduate or equivalent, and must have a current driver’s license. A background check, drug and alcohol screening will be performed as a part of the process. Prospective candidates should also be prepared for a physical requirement check. RACOs must be able to lift at least 70 pounds and sometimes in excess of 70 pounds. Other physical agility requirements, such as stooping, crawling, and bending, will also be tested.
The training program will run for approximately 6 months with a schedule of 4 hours on both Tuesday and Thursday evenings with classroom and field training during the program. Uniforms, equipment and training will be provided by the Department (at no cost to the RACO). We do, however, require a 1-year commitment of 16 hours per month after graduating from the class. We need you!
We are currently accepting applications from volunteers who have finished or will soon finish their required volunteer pre-service. Please complete a regular City Application located at: http://per.lacity.org/
From the Los Angeles Daily News, June 7, 2012.
Tuesday’s primary election dumped scores of political hopefuls from the the state’s ballots. From Arcata to Arleta and San Francisco to Signal Hill, candidates for various legislative offices found their campaigns over when they did not place in the top two of vote-getters in their contests.
This election season is especially crowded, due to the unprecedented coupling of a radical redrawing of political districts and the debut of the state’s top-two primary system, in which voter favorites regardless of party win a place in the general election. This opened up dozens of legislative and congressional seats to real competition, drawing in aspiring politicians who finally had an actual chance.
Some of them may wait for the next opportunity to run for the state Legislature or Congress. Others might throw in the towel, knowing that the uncommon openness of 2012 races is unlikely to occur again.
Then there are those who will look for other ways to get involved. Here’s one they might consider: running for a seats on their neighborhood council.
The Los Angeles Department of Neighborhood Empowerment, currently rebranding itself as Empower L.A., is reaching out to attract new blood to run for open seats in the upcoming elections. The neighborhood councils have reached their 10th anniversary; as this exercise in community democracy begins its second decade, new Elections Coordinator Stephen Box wants to breathe new life into the panels. (Some Angelenos will remember Box as the community activist who ran for City Council against Tom LaBonge in 2011.)
To be sure, serving as a member of a neighborhood council is not as glamorous as serving in the U.S. House of Representatives. And it doesn’t bring in the kind of six-figure pay and benefits of California legislators. In fact, there’s no pay.
But it does have its rewards. One is the ability to effect real, tangible change in your own neighborhood. Another is to learn how to be an effective member of a legislative body. And, for those with bigger political ambitions, the contact with possible future constituents is priceless.
For those who ran for a political seat out of a sincere desire to improve their community (and for those who have simply dreamed about it), this is your chance. People who live, work or have some sort of stake in the city of Los Angeles are welcome to apply. Elections begin this summer in the San Fernando Valley and will move south through the city this fall. Find out more at Empowerla.org.
On Wednesday, the Council unanimously approved a phase out ban of plastic bags citywide and a fee on paper bags. The approved ban initiates an environmental review that needs to commence prior to an ordinance being adopted and the ban becoming law. Under the ban, large stores would have 6 months to phase out plastic bags and the smaller retail stores would have 12 months. For the use of paper bags, retailers would be required to charge a 10-cent per bag one year after the ban. But first, City officials will take approximately 4-6 months to finish the environmental review. Additionally, the Council instructed the Bureau of Sanitation to begin an education and outreach effort to inform the public and encourage the use of reusable bags.
Reduced Snowpack & Increased Water Use Call for Increased Conservation
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) today reminds customers that Mandatory Water Conservation remains in effect and urges customers to increase their water conservation efforts where possible. Overall, water conservation in Los Angeles has been remarkable over the past five years, but recently customer use has been on the rise.
Since 2009, when Mandatory Water Conservation took effect, LADWP water customers have successfully reduced water consumption citywide by nearly 20%. Though overall water use continues to be significantly lower than it has in the past, water use in recent months has risen sharply since January. Year-to-year trends are more modest, but are still cause for concern with overall water use from July 2011 to March 2012, up nearly 3% when compared to the same period in the previous fiscal year. Single-family residential customers alone have demonstrated an increase in water use of more than 5% for the same period, while multi-family residential customers are up just over 1%.
LADWP urges all customers to keep saving water, and money, by continuing to abide by Mandatory Water Conservation measures put into effect in 2009. Reducing water use is as simple as checking sprinkler timers, checking indoors for leaky faucets and toilets, and using a hose fitted with a shut-off nozzle when watering landscape or washing your car.
“In 2011, our customers reached a per capita water usage of 123 gallons daily – the lowest in Los Angeles in more than 40 years and the currently the lowest among any U.S. city with a population over one million,” said James McDaniel, Senior Assistant General Manager, LADWP Water System. “Still, even with this remarkable achievement, recently we’ve noticed water use on the rise and with temperatures climbing and summer coming, we’re asking our customers to once again take a look at their water use and see how they can use less.”
The recent uptick in water use this fiscal year is especially concerning following a dry winter and a below-normal snowpack this year. Dry years require increased purchases of expensive imported supplies from the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California to supplement Los Angeles’ water supply, resulting in higher costs for customers. LADWP customers can curb the impact of the dry winter by increasing water conservation efforts to reduce the city’s overall water demand and thereby reduce the amount of purchased water needed. Since LADWP customers pay only for water used, without any fixed water charges, any additional reduction in water use will result in direct savings on their water bills compared to what they would have paid without conservation.
In June 2009, the City of Los Angeles instituted Mandatory Water Conservation, which restricted outdoor watering and prohibited certain uses of water. The outdoor watering restrictions currently in effect allow customers to use sprinklers three days a week based on their street address. Customers whose address ends with an odd number – 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 – are allowed to use sprinklers on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Customers whose addresses end in even numbers – 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 – are allowed to use sprinklers on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Watering with sprinklers is allowed before 9:00 a.m. and after 4:00 p.m. only, regardless of the watering day, for a maximum of eight minutes per station.
Mandatory Water Conservation also places restrictions on specific water uses, which also remain in effect. Restrictions include prohibiting customers from hosing down driveways and sidewalks, requiring all leaks to be fixed, and requiring customers to use hoses fitted with shut-off nozzles only, among other measures.
To assist customers in conserving water, LADWP offers numerous rebate programs and incentives for switching to water-efficient devices as well as tips for easy ways to reduce water use. Information on the water conservation rebates, as well comprehensive information on Mandatory Water Conservation, is available at www.ladwp.com or by calling 1-800-DIAL DWP.
The Mayor and the City Planning Department have proposed a five-year project to completely rewrite the Los Angeles Zoning Code. It would throw out all of the existing fixed zones and replace them with “dynamic” zones. There would be considerably less control exercised over height, density, interior building space and parking.
This project could be on a fast track through the City Council. It was originally scheduled to be heard by the Planning and Land Use committee on April 24. That is three working days after the Chief Administrative Officer referred its report to the committee. The hearing was later rescheduled for Tuesday, May 8.
It is unclear how the Zoning Code could be completely rewritten without also changing the city’s master planning document, the General Plan. It is also unclear whether or not a rewritten Zoning Code would render moot the local protections that are contained in the city’s many Specific Plans and Community Plans.
This is a major proposal that will affect every neighborhood in Los Angeles — indeed, the character of the city as a whole.
The Council File number is 12-0460. To keep track of the issue and to read the documents, go the the City Clerk’s Council File system, enter 12-0460 in the Simple Search field, and click the Search button: http://cityclerk.lacity.org/
For a taste of the dialog that is likely over the Mayor’s Zoning Code proposal, check out the mixed reactions to the recently proposed revision to the Hollywood Community Plan. The New York Times article of March 28, 2012, reports both sides:
(Content borrowed from panoramacitync.org)
Get up-to-date crime statistics for neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles. Being informed about crime in your community is the first step in preventing future occurrences.
The Los Angeles Police Department will directly feed its crime data to the Omega Group to ensure that each crime is reported accurately on the site. The records themselves are also put through an exclusive data scrubbing process that works to locate each crime incident geographically, to a hundred block. A link to the crime maps can be found at www.lapdonline.org, and by clicking on Crimemapping in the left navigation or the link above. Once on the Crimemapping.com site, users can “filter” crimes from a list of law enforcement agencies that provide data to the site, and click on Part One crimes for specific information such as the date and time each crime occurred. Important links are also provided, as well a feature that allows users to view crime trends and subscribe to receive free Crime Alerts via e-mail when new activity occurs in their area.
For full details, view this message on the web.
Seeking to close a $238 million deficit, Villaraigosa also proposes using close to $83 million in one-time solutions.
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa unveiled a $7.2 billion budget proposal today that includes 231 layoffs and would reduce employee retirement benefits while raising the retirement age from 60 to 67.
Seeking to close a $238 million deficit, Villaraigosa proposed using close to $83 million in one-time solutions that include payments from the dissolution of the city’s redevelopment agency, special parking revenue for basic services and $29 million in Medi-Cal reimbursements anticipated for this year.
The remaining approximately two-thirds of the deficit would be solved through cuts or savings that are ongoing, including a 6 to 12 percent budget cut across across a wide swath of city departments. The mayor and City Council offices would each take an 8 percent budget cut under the plan.
The mayor’s proposal would also require city workers to either pay 6 to 10 percent more toward their health insurance or pay more in co-pays and receive fewer benefits, starting Jan. 1, 2013.
The budget, which will be vetted by the City Council over the next two months, proposed eliminating another 438 unfilled city jobs. The combined layoffs and position eliminations would save the city $26 million, according to the mayor’s office. (more…)
Legal Mandates and Aging Infrastructure
Driving Need for Rate Increases;
Seven Regional Meetings Slated April 25-May 10
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) will hold a series of community meetings throughout the city beginning April 25 to educate and inform customers regarding proposed power and water rate changes needed over the next two years.
The proposed changes are necessary to meet a series of regulatory mandates that affect much of LADWP’s existing energy and water supplies, and to invest in replacing aging infrastructure to maintain reliability for LADWP’s 1.4 million electric customers and 657,000 water customers.
Following are the dates and locations for the regional meetings. In addition, LADWP is planning to hold additional online webinars and meetings that will be announced in the near future.
RSVP’s for the community meeting are encouraged, but not required. To RSVP, please click on the link below each meeting.
Wednesday, April 25, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Crowne Plaza Hotel, Salon A
601 S. Palos Verdes St.
San Pedro 90731
Thursday, April 26, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Holiday Inn Express & Suites
22617 Ventura Blvd.
Woodland Hills 91367
Saturday, April 28, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
LADWP John Ferraro Building Headquarters
111 N. Hope St., A Level
Los Angeles 90012
Monday, April 30, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
LADWP Crenshaw Service Center
4030 Crenshaw Blvd.
Los Angeles 90008
Wednesday, May 2, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Recreation and Parks Ramona Hall
4580 N. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles 90065
Thursday, May 3, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
LADWP Van Nuys Service Center
14401 Saticoy St.
Van Nuys 91405
Thursday, May 10, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Stephen S. Wise Temple, South Taub Annex
15500 Stephen S. Wise Drive
Los Angeles 90077
Click here to contact your Neighborhood Council Representative.