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Thoroughly Modern Bob – Coming to a Legislature Near You!

Paul Hatfield
PERSPECTIVE-Thoroughly Modern Millie was a Tony Award winner. State Senator Bob Hertzberg is rolling out his own sequel. The only problem is the production cost. Actually, the real problem is we will be the ones bankrolling it if Bob gets the green light. It is the most expensive tax scam concocted, more than California HSR. I’m talking…

Elite Girls School Has Brentwood Up in Arms … Over Traffic

John Schwada
INSIDE LA-Hairdresser Mikell Powell is walking her two dogs in Brentwood along Sunset Boulevard just across the street from the Archer School for Girls (photo left). “I’m opposed to anything that would make driving on Sunset here anymore hellish than it already is,” Powell says as her dogs tug on their leashes. No question: there’s a 1.2 mile…

Homeless LA: Safe Havens, Not Sidewalks

Mike Bonin
WHO WE ARE-In recent years, Los Angeles has seen more progress in combating homelessness than it ever has – yet the problem is still getting worse. Since 2011, the region has housed more than 23,000 people – a record number even by national standards. Yet homelessness is on the rise. Encampments are proliferating in our neighborhoods throughout…

Can LA Afford Another Olympics?

Jack Humphreville
LA WATCHDOG-Boston bailed on hosting the 2024 Olympics when Mayor Martin Walsh refused to sign a host city contract with the United States Olympic Committee (“USOC”) that would have put Beantown (and possibly the Commonwealth of Massachusetts) on the hook for any cost overruns associated with this 17 day extravaganza. But Walsh’s refusal to…

The Petty Hypocrisy of Mandatory Ethics Training

Bob Gelfand
GELFAND’S WORLD-As a member of a neighborhood council board, I am required by state law to do 2 hours of ethics training every 2 years. Elected officials such as members of the City Council are also required to take this training. The curious thing about our California ethics rules is that they prohibit the small stuff while looking the other way…

Los Angeles: Brown lives Matter!

Fred Mariscal
LATINO PERSPECTIVE-According to the Los Angeles Times, over the last five years in LA County, coroner's data show that Latinos, who make up about half of the county's population, also represent about half the people killed by police. Of the 23 people fatally shot by law enforcement in the county this year, 14 were Latino. The Times raises an…

Grading the LA Times: Mike Feuer’s B+ Leaves Something Out

Noel Weiss
OTHER VOICES-Reading the LA Times’ Report Card grade of B+ for City Attorney Mike Feuer, it was good to see at least a 'hat-tip' to the issue of whether the City Attorney really is the “attorney for the people.” But their conclusion seems to be that he is not, and I believe that is wrong. Exactly who does the City Attorney represent? Certainly, he…

Beverly Hills Pounds Final Nail in Bike Lanes Coffin

Mark Elliot
GETTING THERE FROM HERE-If you expected that Beverly Hills might install bicycle lanes on our segment of Santa Monica Boulevard when reconstructing it next year, you will be sorely disappointed to know that City Council just pounded the final nail into the bike lanes coffin. City Council split on the Blue Ribbon Committee recommendation to expand…

Helter Skelter, Murder and the Looming Race War

Tony Castro
TONY CASTRO’S LA-In one of our last conversations before his death earlier this year, author and prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi lamented that while he had successfully imprisoned Charles Manson, he feared he had only made a dent in the threat of an apocalyptic race war that the mass murderer had hoped to ignite. “Madness and mad men,” said Bugliosi,…

 

Reynolds Rap Video: Joey has hope for the pope in Philly.





You’re gonna cry! Kids sing to teacher with cancer

Scarrrry! The Flying Gun

Kid Stuff! Full of chuckles


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Why We Should be Worried about LA’s Flat-Lining Population

RECLAIMING LA’S MOJO - The 2010 US Census revealed a remarkable but not surprising truth: From the year 2000 to 2010, and for the first time in 100 years, California’s population grew no faster than the nation as a whole.

Also for the first time in a century, the population of Los Angeles actually shrank when you net out people born here in the past decade. A fresh Census update shows the same: Other US cities have more mojo than LA, baby!
Among the cities growing faster than Los Angeles are Austin, Texas and Atlanta. Of course they’re both considerably smaller, but they have advantages at the moment that are attracting new residents at a faster clip (more on the reasons why in a future CityWatch column).

I don’t want more people sitting on the 405, either, but here’s why we should still care about LA’s flat-lining population numbers: The tax base. Los Angeles needs a stable, if not growing, tax base to deliver core services, and to make investments and improvements … not to mention help fund massive liabilities confronting the city in the next few years, including labor and benefits costs and aging infrastructure.

Yes, there is additional fat to be trimmed from the city budget to fund core services, better collections to be undertaken, more efficiencies (including through technology) to be wrung out of the system, and all the ridiculous corporate welfare to be ended, but that doesn’t discount the larger point: A few more peeps around here could help pay the bills, and would certainly support residential and commercial property values.

We know people have been leaving Los Angeles for 20 years, but they’ve been replaced at a reasonable rate. Only more recently has inward migration really sputtered. Why? Top of the list are lack of investment in public infrastructure (though Measure R is making a dent), low-performing schools and high unemployment. Throw in the gross receipts tax on businesses and the general perception that LA is hostile to business, and it becomes clear why other cities are attracting more residents and private investment.

Sadly, a loss of mojo perpetuates itself.

But for all the evidence of decline (high unemployment and broken streets, sidewalks, trees), there are signs of hope all across Los Angeles: Good schools in the West Valley that attract families from Ventura … reduced crime, and more small parks, in Northeast LA neighborhoods where home prices are rising … a more livable downtown at the center of an expanding public transit network … repaired sidewalks in Sylmar … new corporate locations in Venice.

The challenge for LA is to multiply and accelerate the momentum — to make the good things happening writ small happen writ large, and to fix what remains seriously broken, including lagging Fire service that jeopardizes the health and safety of our people, and a corporate welfare system that’s so depleted the municipal treasury and spoiled some private investors that they won’t invest in the city without handouts that most of the time simply are not needed.

A relentless focus on reclaiming LA’s mojo can make it so … to the benefit of the residents and the businesses that call Los Angeles home.


(Cary Brazeman, a contributor to CityWatch, is a neighborhood council board member, founder of LA Neighbors United, and a candidate for City Controller of Los Angeles. Contact him at cary@carybrazeman.com.)
-cw

Tags: Cary Brazeman, population, Los Angeles, Los Angeles population, business





CityWatch
Vol 10 Issue 57
Pub: July 17, 2012

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