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Englander E-News: Business Tax, Road Bond, LAFD Honor and More...

This is the weekly newsletter from City Council District 12.

COUNCILMEMBER ENGLANDER'S E-NEWS
Jan. 25, 2013
 

Appointment to Ad Hoc Committee on Business Tax Reform...

I had the honor of being appointed to the newly created Ad Hoc Committee on Business Tax Reform. This new committee will address all matters relating to reductions in the City Gross Receipts Tax, business tax incentives to promote business development, and other business tax matters previously raised by the Business Tax Advisory Committee. 

My legislation to end the Gross Receipts Tax for new car dealerships in the City of L.A. was a first step. I am committed to eliminating the City’s Gross Receipts Tax as part of my overall efforts to make L.A. more business friendly, boost the economy and help local businesses create jobs. As a former business owner, I understand the importance of easing restrictions and look forward to the opportunity to encourage more economic growth throughout the City.

- Mitchell Englander, Councilmember, Twelfth District 

Interview on KTLA Ch. 5 About the Proposed L.A. Street Repair Bond...

On Sunday, Jan. 20, I joined hosts Chris Burroughs and Lu Parker on KTLA Morning News to discuss my proposed $3 billion L.A. Street Repair Bond. 

To see the interview, click here.  

Councilmember Joe Buscaino and I proposed the Street Repair Bond to bring the 8,700 miles of L.A. streets in failed and poor condition up to A or B condition in 10 years. At the current rate it would take 60 years to fix all of the streets. Our crumbling streets cost L.A. residents an additional $750 per year per vehicle in additional maintenance. The improvement to our streets would boost property values and generate jobs and economic benefit, and make our streets safer and less congested. 

We moved to hold the Street Repair Bond for a future ballot, not the May 2013 ballot, to allow more time to conduct a comprehensive public outreach campaign, answer questions and get the input of all Los Angeles stakeholders. The Public Works Committee, which Buscaino chairs, will be holding a series of public meetings across the regions of Los Angeles. 

The funds from the bond could not go toward any other purpose than the designated street repair, and would be placed in a trust fund with a Citizens Oversight Committee to ensure transparency and accountability. 

To see the Street Repair website, click here

Honoring a Veteran L.A. Firefighter...

As Chair of the Public Safety Committee, I was proud to present a commendation in City Council today to Pat McOsker in recognition of his service as former President of the United Firefighters of Los Angeles (UFLAC). After stepping down as leader of UFLAC he went back to working as a Firefighter in his home community of San Pedro. He has been a Los Angeles Firefighter for 31 years. Pat was joined by his wife, brother, son, mother and father, who was also a Firefighter.  

Pat was elected President of UFLAC in 2002.  As UFLAC President, he supported programs that connect L.A.'s youth to jobs and opportunity, including the Fire Department's Explorer Program at Harbor College, which steers young men and women toward careers with the Los Angeles Fire Department. He was honored by the Banning High School Fire Academy in Wilmington for supporting a program credited with turning around the lives of at-risk youths through disciplined training in fire service procedures. 

Pat traveled to Sacramento and Washington to wage winning campaigns for federal and state support for L.A.'s fire protection and rescue operations. He was appointed by the Governor to the California State Board of Fire Services in 2009, and is a Vice President on the Executive Boards of the California Professional Firefighters and the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.  

To see more photos, click here

Unveiling of Valley Traffic Division's Fallen Officer Memorial...

As Chair of the Public Safety Committee, as an LAPD Reserve Officer, as a motorcyclist, and as a father whose daughter recently got her drivers license, I was honored to be on hand for the unveiling of the LAPD Valley Traffic Division Fallen Officer Memorial. The memorial plaque has the names of every Valley Traffic Division Officer killed in the line of duty.

Most LAPD stations in Los Angeles have a memorial plaque for the fallen Officers who were stationed there. As a fairly new facility, Valley Traffic Division’s Station did not yet have a memorial. 

Our thoughts and prayers go out to families of the fallen Officers. We must never forget the contributions and sacrifices that they have made. Traffic Officers risk their lives on a daily basis to save lives, keep our roads safe, and keep traffic moving. To see more photos, click here.
 

Supporting Neighborhood Councils...

Last week, our office was proud to host the second North West San Fernando Valley Neighborhood Council Treasurer's Roundtable at our Community Service Center.  

The goal was to create a forum for the Neighborhood Council Treasurers in Neighborhood Council Election Region 2 to share best practices, to support each other and advance collaborative projects. It also offered a chance for the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment (DONE) to provide clarification of Neighborhood Council program guidelines and support Neighborhood Council Treasurers in performing their duties while evaluating the need for change in the Neighborhood Council Funding Program. 

Hosting this meeting was one of the ways that our office helps support the activities of Neighborhood Councils and offer them technical and organizational assistance. We look forward to supporting future Neighborhood Council endeavors.

Foster Homes Needed for Puppies & Kittens...

Foster homes are needed to care for newly born puppies and kittens from L.A. Department of Animal Services shelters. Fosters raise the puppies and kittens until they are 8 to 10 weeks old and are strong enough to be returned to the shelter to be spayed or neutered and placed in permanent, loving homes. 

The application takes up to several weeks. Foster care for newly born kittens and puppies greatly ensures their survival rate, development and health throughout their lives. It can also provide a valuable educational experience for children. 

You can also sign up to foster injured or sick animals and healthy adult animals, as well as reptiles and exotic animals.

To sign up click here. To see some of the animals that need foster care, or learn about other ways to volunteer or support shelter animals, visit the West Valley Animal Shelter, located at 20655 Plummer St. in Chatsworth. 

San Fernando Valley High Schools Competing in Robot Challenge...

Several San Fernando Valley high schools have teams competing in the L.A. Pierce College Invitational Robotics Competition on Saturday, Jan. 26. Robot competitions offer a fun, exciting, rewarding way for students to learn valuable computer, engineering, math and science skills.

Saturday, Jan. 26
9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Pierce College
Great Hall
6201 Winnetka Ave.
Woodland Hills

Schools including Reseda High, Westlake High, Van Nuys High, Louisville High, Cleveland High and Magnolia Science Academy have teams of students who will be competing with robots that they have designed and built. This exciting event is free and open to the public.

For more information, click here. 

Call for Volunteers to Help Prune Park Roses...

The Southern California Garden Club in partnership with the San Fernando Valley Rose Society and the West Valley Garden Club are organizing a volunteer rose pruning event in one of our local parks this month.

Saturday, Jan. 26
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
Homestead Acre
Chatsworth Park South
10835 Shadow Oak Dr., Chatsworth 

There are nearly 600 rose bushes at Orcutt Ranch and over 300 rose bushes at Homestead Acre in Chatsworth Park South that need pruning. You can volunteer for this fun event and help maintain these beautiful gardens. A short pruning tutorial will be provided and refreshments will be served. Bring clippers and gloves if you have them. The flowers harvested during the rose pruning events will be donated to the Los Angeles Zoo for their primate and reptile program.

For more information, call Albert Chang at (818) 363-5925 or email afchangusa@gmail.com  

Kicking Off Our Year of Healthy Living...

This month we are kicking off a new initiative - the CD 12 Year of Healthy Living! Every month, we have a community activity or event meant to offer families in the community a fun way to get healthy. The events range from community hikes, walks and bike rides, to informational events on nutrition, healthcare and financial health.

Healthy living means more than just eating vegetables and exercising. It also means taking care of our community, our environment, our mental health and more.

Saturday, Jan. 26
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
North Valley Family YMCA
11336 Corbin Ave.
Porter Ranch
(at Rinaldi St.)

To start off the Year of Healthy Living, our January activity is a Health Expo in partnership with the North Valley Family YMCA on Saturday, Jan. 26 in Porter Ranch. At the Health Expo, there will be doctors and pharmacists on hand to provide free consultation, and there will be booths with information about healthcare services and resources. There will also be live entertainment, healthy recipe ideas and free snacks and refreshments and more!

For more information about this event call the North Valley Family YMCA at(818) 368-3232.

Board of Equalization Small Business Seminar...

Councilmember Englander will be speaking at "Strategies for Success in Today's Economy," the California Board of Equalization's (BOE) next Small Business Seminar at CSUN on Jan. 30.

He will join the BOE Chairman Jerome E. Horton as well as State Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield at the free seminar, which is part of a series of educational events meant to help small businesses create quality jobs and prosper in California. The Small Business Seminars, in partnership with the Franchise Tax Board, Employment Development Department, Internal Revenue Service and a host of other service providers, seek to help small businesses minimize the frustration of taxation and thrive to help spur economic growth in California.

Wednesday, Jan. 30
9:00 am
CSUN
University Student Union
18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge
Parking on campus costs $6

The Small Business Seminars are also designed to raise awareness of BOE's Taxpayers Advocacy and Use Tax Programs and increase voluntary compliance. Up to 250 small business owners, tax practitioners, inspiring entrepreneurs, members of local Chambers of Commerce and students of the College of Business and Economics are expected to attend. The event is free, but space is limited, so RSVPs are required.

New business owners, entrepreneurs considering starting a business, professionals currently operating a business who want to learn about state or federal tax laws, or those who want to improve their business knowledge are encouraged to attend.

To RSVP online, click here. For more information, please call (888) 847-9652.

Ride On Pancake Breakfast...

Join Ride On Therapeutic Horsemanship for their annual Pancake Breakfast and Open House on Saturday, Feb. 9. This fun, free, family-friendly event will include demonstrations by Ride On's talented students highlighting the programs that Ride On provides. 

Ride On offers therapeutic riding and hippotherapy - physical therapy on horseback - for children and adults with physical and intellectual disabilities.

Saturday, Feb. 9
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
Ride On Therapeutic Horsemanship
10860 Topanga Canyon Blvd.
Chatsworth

Come learn more about the unique services that are offered to children and adults with special needs. There will also be staff and board members on hand to talk about volunteer and involvement opportunities. 

For more information call (818) 700-2971 or email Sara@rideon.org.

Bicycle Master Plan - Traffic and Safety Review...

The City is holding several public hearings on the 2010 Bicycle Master Plan. In Sept. 2012, the state enacted a law to exempt restriping of urban streets for bicycle lanes. In order to be eligible for the exemption, the City must conduct an assessment of traffic and safety impacts of the proposed projects that are part of the Bicycle Master Plan, hold public hearings and hear and respond to public comment. 

The meetings will include presentations by the Department of Transportation (LADOT), Department of City Planning as well as a public hearing. Following the hearings, a written report incorporating and responding to the public comments will be presented to the General Manager of LADOT and will be made available to the public. There will be one hearing in the San Fernando Valley. 

Valley Area
Thursday, Feb. 21
6:00 pm to 8:30 pm
North Hollywood Regional Library 
5211 Tujunga Ave., North Hollywood

There will also be a webinar on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm. For details about how to log in to watch the webinar, visit http://LADOTbikeblog.wordpress.com

The Los Angeles Bicycle plan, approved by the City Council in 2010, lays out a long-term goal of 1,680 miles of interconnected bikeways and calls for more than 200 miles of new bicycle routes every five years. It suggests that such major arteries get bike lanes in the near future, and sets goals to make bicycling in the City a safer, more convenient, viable transportation form that is incorporated into the overall traffic and transportation routes, plans and patterns of the City. 

For more information, call David Somers at (213) 978-3307. 

Kiwanis Club of Northridge Hosting Mayoral Candidate Forums...

The Kiwanis Club of Northridge is hosting a series of discussions with the candidates for Mayor of Los Angeles at their regular Thursday meetings in Northridge.

The Kiwanis Club, a not-for profit organization, is not endorsing or supporting any candidate, but providing a forum to help the community learn about the different candidates and ask them questions about their policies and positions. 

All of the meetings are on Thursdays at 12:00 pm. Parking at CSUN costs $6. Street parking is limited. There will be a buffet lunch available at the Orange Grove Bistro for $16.

Thursday, Jan. 24: Councilmember Jan Perry
Thursday, Jan. 31: Kevin James, former Federal Prosecutor &
Talk Show host
Thursday, Feb. 7: Councilmember Eric Garcetti
Thursday, Feb. 14: City Controller Wendy Gruel

At the Orange Grove Bistro at CSUN 
Zelzah Ave. and Nordhoff St., Northridge 

Founded in 1915, Kiwanis is an International service organization serving children around the world. 

To make reservations, call Sharon Rose, President, Kiwanis Club of Northridge, at (818) 708-8596 or email SRKiwanis1@AOL.com.

Learn Ballroom Dance and Other Styles at St. Euphrasia...

Looking for a fun way to burn off those holiday calories and fulfill your New Year's resolution? St. Euphrasia Church in Granada Hills is offering ballroom, swing and fox trot dance lessons every Friday evening through Feb. 8. 

Every Friday
Through Feb. 8
7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
St. Euphrasia Church
Parish Hall
17637 Mayerling St.
Granada Hills

Registration is at 6:30 pm, and the classes start at 7:00 pm sharp. Single classes cost $10, and a six-week series costs $50.

For more information, call Susie Sempelsz at (818) 360-4611 or emailsusie@sarshop.com.

North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce Installation Luncheon...

Save the date for the North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce's annual installation luncheon on Friday, Feb. 15 in Granada Hills. The key note address will be given by CSUN's recently appointed President Dianne Harrison. The Chamber will also present Rickey Gelb with the 2013 CK Tseng Award.

Friday, Feb. 15
11:30 am
Odyssey Restaurant
15600 Odyssey Dr.
Granada Hills
Cost: $55

For more info or to RSVP, call Stephanie Schwinn at (818) 349-5676 or emailstephanie@nvrcc.com.

Free CERT Training...

There is a great opportunity coming up for families to learn how to get prepared for earthquakes, wildfires, floods or other disasters at the free Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) course in Chatsworth.

These courses could make all the difference for you and your family before, during and after a disaster. We applaud Chatsworth Neighborhood Council for sponsoring this important public safety resource for the community.

Thursdays
Through Feb. 21
9:30 am to 12:00 pm
Chatsworth Library Meeting Room
21052 Devonshire St., Chatsworth

CERT trains community members in basic disaster response skills such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization and disaster medical operations. You will learn how to prepare for emergencies, what supplies, food and water you should have in your home or office, and most importantly, how to protect your family and your neighbors.

For more information email cert@chatsworthcouncil.org or call Clara at (818) 773-9655.

Save the Date for the February "Year of Healthy Living" Event: The Wild West Chatsworth Community Bike Ride...

Save the date for the Wild West Chatsworth Community Bike Ride, a fun, free, family-friendly bike ride highlighting the sites, culture and history of the community, in partnership with CICLE (Cyclists Inciting Change thru Live Exchange).

On the approximately 7 mile ride, we will tour the Historic Olive Grove, the Homestead Acre and Chatsworth History Museum, Stoney Point Ranch, Mr. Ed's Barn, and the Munchbox, a 1950s burger stand which is a Cultural Historic Monument.

Saturday, Feb. 23
10:00 am
Chatsworth Depot Metrolink Station
Devonshire Parking Lot
10046 Old Depot Plaza Rd., Chatsworth
Map: http://goo.gl/maps/9vlBG

We will kick off the ride with a brief talk about bicycle safety, with free healthy snacks, coffee, juice and water donated by Alliance Beverage Partners of Chatsworth, Western Bagel of Chatsworth. There will be a drawing for a great prize donated by REI. Sales of tickets for the drawing benefit CICLE, which is a non-profit organization working to promote bicycling as a viable, healthy, and sustainable transportation choice.www.CICLE.org

Please bring a bicycle in good working order. Participants should be able to ride a bike safely with the ability to brake, change gears, and balance while stopping and starting. We recommend all riders wear a helmet. All riders under 18 MUST wear a helmet and be escorted by a parent or guardian. Children under 8 years old should be on a tag-a-long, bike trailer, tandem, or other safe child-carrying device to participate in the ride. 

For the Year of Healthy Living, we are holding a community activity or event every month to offer families in the community a fun way to get healthy. The events range from community hikes, walks and bike rides, to informational events on nutrition, healthcare and financial health. 

For more information, email Julia@cicle.org.

Welcoming a New Community Based Non-Profit Organization...

Our Field Deputy Semee Park heads our office's work with non-profit organizations offering services in our community. She reports this week on the grand opening of the new office of Open Arms Pregnancy Center in Northridge. 

Open Arms' new office is located at 9535 Reseda Blvd., Suite 303 in Northridge Medical Plaza. To learn more about their services, visit www.Openarmspregnancy.com or call (818) 626-9404. Their 24-hour help line is (818) 626-9400. 
Open Arms has been offering education and support for men and women faced with unexpected pregnancy for over 20 years.  They offer free pregnancy tests, free counseling for women and men, referrals to medical care, housing, maternity homes, adoption services, social services, employment guidance, and legal aid. They provide peer-to-peer counseling, education about pregnancy and parenting, free maternity and baby clothing and baby furniture for those participating in their "Earn While You Learn" program. 

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