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Englander E-News: Pot Shops, New School, Cancer Care and More ...

This is the weekly City Council District 12 newsletter.

COUNCILMEMBER ENGLANDER'S E-NEWS

Oct. 5, 2012

Follow us on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/Mitch_Englander 

Creating New Tools to Enable Us to Shut Down Illegal Marijuana Businesses in Our Community...

On Tuesday, Oct. 2, the City Council voted to repeal the "soft ban" which prohibited all storefront marijuana shops, but still allowed small groups of patients and their caregivers to grow and share marijuana. 

The Council was forced to vote because medical marijuana advocates had gathered enough signatures to place a referendum on a City ballot asking voters to overturn the soft ban. The City Council had to either repeal the ban on its own, or allow the question to go to the voters. Placing the question on the ballot for the upcoming election would have cost taxpayers up to $3 million at a time when the budget shortfall has forced reductions in core City services. 

With the soft ban repealed, the City was left without any regulations on marijuana facilities in Los Angeles. I immediately introduced a motion calling on the Department of Building and Safety and the LAPD to enforce existing zoning codes, which currently do not allow any retail marijuana businesses that offer pot-for-cash. That will enable us to close storefront marijuana shops in our community. Click here to see our press release

Working for Improvements in State Law on Medical Marijuana...
On the same day, I co-authored a resolution calling on the State Legislature to take action, in a manner consistent with Federal drug laws, to address the inadequacies of California State law governing cultivation, recommendation, and distribution of medical marijuana. This includes more clearly defining cities' abilities to regulate marijuana facilities on the local level, creating better regulation of doctors prescribing marijuana, and clearly defining what ailments marijuana can be prescribed for. Click here to see the resolution

Grand Opening of Porter Ranch Community School...

Today, we cut the ribbon on the recently completed Porter Ranch Community School at a terrific event with hundreds of parents, kids, teachers and community members. After working toward this goal for many years, since before I was elected to the City Council, it is one of my proudest moments to open this long-awaited and badly needed school. My deep gratitude and congratulations go to all those who have come together and worked so hard to bring this amazing educational asset to the community.

We have worked together with community members, the Porter Ranch Neighborhood Council, parents, Renaissance Home Owners Association, the LAUSD and Department of Transportation to get both short and long term solutions in place to address traffic and parking issues that had come up with the new school. 

- Mitchell Englander, Councilmember, Twelfth District

Supporting Cancer Care Programs in Our Community...

I was proud to visit the Jennifer Diamond Foundation Monday, Oct. 2, a non-profit cancer support center located in Chatsworth. I presented Foundation President Harvey Diamond, CFO Alice Diamond, and Vice President Matt Diamond with a commendation in recognition of their valuable programs and services, providing education and support to people fighting cancer and their families in our community. The Foundation operates eight Cancer Information Libraries that patients and their families can use as well as innovative healing programs. To learn more about the Foundation, visit http://www.jenniferdiamondfoundation.org/mission_statement

- Mitchell Englander, Councilmember, Twelfth District

Opposing Increase in the Documentary Transfer Tax...

You may have recently received a pamphlet in the mail urging opposition to the proposed increase in the Documentary Transfer Tax. The pamphlet was created and mailed independently by Los Angeles Citizens Against Discriminatory Taxes, a coalition of Associations of Realtors across California. I agree with their efforts and I oppose any increase in the Documentary Transfer Tax. The Documentary Transfer Tax increase would hurt real estate sales at a time when our economy is struggling. To learn more about this issue, and how you can get involved in opposing this tax increase, click here http://db.tt/3qrIPk1y

- Mitchell Englander, Councilmember, Twelfth District

5th Annual Valley Disaster Preparedness Fair...

Come learn how your family can get prepared for major earthquakes, wildfires, floods, and other disasters at the 5th Annual Valley Disaster Preparedness Fair, on Saturday, Oct. 6 at Fire Station 87 in Granada Hills. 

Saturday, Oct. 6
10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Fire Station 87
10124 Balboa Blvd. Granada Hills

We are proud to co-sponsor this terrific event, together with Northridge South, Northridge East, and Northridge West Neighborhoor Councils.  Granada Hills North, Granada Hills South, North Hills West, Porter Ranch, Chatsworth and Lake Balboa Neighborhood Councils also participating. The Neighborhood Councils will be giving away 400 Emergency Preparedness Starter Kits (1 per family). 

There will also be drawings for a backpack filled with emergency supplies, the Yogi Bear Shakey-Quakey School House and Free Child IDs provided by Granada Hills Masons. There will be demonstrations and booths from HAM Radio Operators, LAFD's Jaws-of-Life, LADWP Safety Demonstration, Civil Air Patrol Van Nuys, Marines, Navy, Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Red Cross, a Kids Safety Puppet Show, LAPD Mobile Command Post, Southern California Gas Company, CERT (Community Emergency Response Team), Northridge Hospital Trauma Department and more. 

Walk to End Poverty...

LSS Community Care Center's Walk To End Poverty in Southern California is this Saturday, Oct. 6. LSS-CCC offers more than 50 different community service programs all across Southern California, including servinces for children, seniors, families and people with disabilities, grief counseling, court counseling, anger management, family counseling, health education, vocational training and career counseling, emergency assistance, bus vouchers, gas vouchers, rental assistance, home repairs and much more.

You can join and walk as an individual, or a group, or you can join an existing group. If you can't walk in the event, you can still help this important cause by sponsoring other walkers or donating directly to LSS Community Care Centers. To learn how to sign up, visit http://www.lsswalk.org/. Please like this event on Facebook, and share on your own Facebook and Twitter pages!Click here to see the event Facebook.  

Saturday, Oct. 6
Lake Balboa Park, Encino
Pavilion #1
6300 Balboa Blvd.
Van Nuys
Map - 
http://goo.gl/maps/0awmA
Registration 9:00 am 
Start time 10:00 am
BBQ and awards 11:30 am

The Walk to End Poverty hopes to raise $100,000 in total. Help the Bethel Lutheran Church of Encino team reach their fundraising goal of $30,000! Visit their team page here

For more information, email Jan Maseda at jmaseda@lsssc.org or Patti Newcomb at patti@corporatecreative.com

Free Secure Document Shredding...

Shred-it, and the Los Angeles Regional CRIME STOPPERS are teaming up to offer community members a free document shredding day to help prevent identity theft. 

Saturday, Oct. 6
9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Target
11133 Balboa Blvd.
Granada Hills

Shredding personal documents that you no longer need, such as old bank statements, insurance bills, utility bills and credit card bills is one of the best ways to protect yourself from identity theft. Criminals frequently will take documents with personal information on them from trash or recycling bins and use them to create false credit cards or accounts and use them to withdraw money or purchase goods. This can ruin your credit record and it can be a difficult and slow process to repair the damage. 

Los Angeles Fire Department Charity Car Show...

Don't miss the annual Los Angeles Fire Department Car Show, on Sunday, Oct. 7 in West Hills. 

This great annual Valley tradition features food cooked by Firefighters, live entertainment,  a raffle for great prizes, and hundreds of unique and beautiful custom cars, bikes, boats, trucks, hot rods, race cars, and muscle cars on display. You can sign up for their first-ever LAFD Pinewood Derby. 

Sunday, Oct. 7
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
22801 Roscoe Blvd.
(across from LAFD Station 106)  
West Hills

The LAFD Recruitment Unit will have a booth for those interested in a career in firefighting. There will also be a blood drive with the Cedars-Sinai Hospital blood drive, so come give the gift of life! 

The LAFD Charity Car Show is open to all participants. Participants will receive "Goody Bags" donated by the sponsors.  The entry fee is $25 before Sept. 30 or $35 at the gate. Admission to the show is free. All proceeds will go to the Los Angeles Firemen’s Widows, Orphans and Disabled Firemen’s Fund and Firefighters Quest for Burn Survivors. 

For more information, or to register to participate in the show, call Don Cascio at (805) 660-0579 or email shelbydon@yahoo.com or visit http://lafdcarshow.com/.

Pioneer Day at the Homestead Acre in Chatsworth... 
Pioneer Day at the Homestead Acre in Chatsworth is coming up on Sunday, Oct. 7, so save the date for this great Northwest San Fernando Valley tradition. 

Sunday, Oct. 7
11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Homestead Acre
Chatsworth Park South
10385 Shadow Oak Dr.
(At the west end of Devonshire St.)
Chatsworth

This wonderful, family-friendly event celebrates the rich history of our community, and includes tours of the Virginia Watson Chatsworth Historical Museum and the historical Minnie Palmer Cottage. There will also be the famous Chili Cook-Off, a bake sale, and demonstrations of wood-carving, arrowhead making, weaving, panning for gold, quilting, blacksmithing, Native American artifacts, and more. 

There is free parking and a shuttle service to and from the park at Chatsworth Depot Metrolink Station, located at 10038 Old Depot Plaza Rd. (Enter from Devonshire St. between Canoga Ave. and Owensmouth Ave.). 

$5 donation for adults. $1 for kids. Proceeds support the Chatsworth Historical Society. 

For more information, visit  http://www.historicalsocieties.net.

Help the YMCA Give Thanksgiving Dinners to Struggling Families...

You can help ensure that struggling families in our community can have their own Thanksgiving dinner at home. To support the North Valley Family YMCA's Annual Thanksgiving Basket Drive, you can donate canned goods, dried goods, stuffing, desert, vegetables, turkeys, gift cards or money. Every year, the YMCA donates more than 500 complete Thanksgiving dinners. 

If you donate 20 cans, or a $20 check or grocery store gift card, the YMCA will give you a professional portrait photo of your child in their Halloween costume. 

Sunday, October 7
10:00am to 4:00 pm
North Valley YMCA at Porter Ranch
11336 Corbin Ave., Northridge

No appointment is necessary. Bring your little trick or treater in their Halloween costume for their photo shoot, compliments of Divine Shots Photography. There is a limit of one 4 x 6 inch portrait per family, and is only offered for kids younger than 12 years old. The portrait will be available for pickup within 15 days. For more information please visitwww.ymcala.org/nv

LAPD Topanga Station Town Hall Meeting...

Join the Police Officers from LAPD Topanga Community Police Station for their next Town Hall Meeting, on Thursday, Oct. 11 at West Valley Christian Church. 

Thursday, Oct. 11
6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
West Valley Christian Church
22450 Sherman Way, West Hills

The Topanga Area Commanding Officer, Detective Commanding Officer and Detectives will discuss crime trends, give crime prevention tips and public safety information and take questions and address crime concerns from the public. This is a great way to get more involved in keeping our community safe and a chance to get to know the Police Officers who protect and serve our community every day. 

Representatives from our office will be on hand to answer questions and hear concerns not covered by the Police. 

For more information, call Senior Lead Officers Dennis Cunningham or Sam Sabra at (818) 756-3070 or visit www.lapdtopanga.org.

Councilmember Englander to Receive Spirit of Life Award at Fundraiser to Benefit Northridge Hospital Medical Center...

Councilmember Englander is proud to be receiving this year's Spirit of Life Award at Northridge Hospital Foundation's Steppin Out Gala, on Saturday, Oct. 13 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Westlake Village. 

The proceeds from this night of elegant entertainment benefit an important cause - emergency and trauma services at Northridge Hospital Medical Center. 
 
Saturday, Oct. 13
6:00 pm
Four Seasons Hotel 
Grand Ballroom
2 Dole Dr., Westlake Village


The black tie-optional event features a silent auction and reception (6:00 pm) and dinner, entertainment and dancing (7:30 pm) with live music by 
Papa Doo Run Run, California’s Band. Master of Ceremonies Mark Kriski is an emmy-award-winning meteorologist, appearing on KTLA Ch. 5  for two decades. 

For information on tickets or sponsorship, click here

North Valley Eldercare Expo...

The North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce Senior Services Business Council (SSBC) in association with SFV Marketing and Admissions Professionals for Seniors (M.A.P.S.) is sponsoring a Caregivers and Senior Resources Expo on Oct. 13 in Northridge. 

Saturday, Oct. 13
11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Northridge Fashion Center 
(northern courtyard)

As people are living longer, the economic, emotional and physical dependence on family members are growing. This presents challenges to those who are taking care of their children as well as their aging parents.

The free Expo will feature professionals who serve the senior community who can provide guidance with these challenges, speakers, counselors, free ElderCare Resource Directories, and other information and resources. 

Darby Elementary School Fundraiser to Support Goodwill...

Please donate unwanted or used household items, electronics and clean clothing in good condition to Darby Elementary School's 5th Grade Class for their Goodwill donation drive. Darby has partnered with Goodwill Southern California to raise funds as well as support Goodwill’s mission of enhancing the quality of life for people with disabilities through education, training and job placement services.  

This event is a win-win! For every trailer full of donated items, Darby Elementary's 5th Grade Class earns money to help pay for school supplies for students, and Goodwill receives donated items that will go to struggling families in our community. 

Saturday Oct. 13
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Darby Elementary School
10818 Darby Ave., Northridge
Teacher's parking lot on southwest corner.
 

To see the list of accepted and not-accepted items, click here
To have items picked up please call (818) 319-7139. 

CSUN Language, Speech and Hearing Center’s 50th Anniversary...

The Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences will be hosting a special reception to celebrate the Center's 50th Anniversary on Sunday, Oct. 14 at CSUN. 

Sunday, October 14
Reception - 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Orange Grove Bistro
Open House - 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Monterey Hall
CSUN Campus
18111 Nordhoff St.,  Northridge

The Center provides a comprehensive array of diagnostic and therapeutic services aimed at the identification, prevention and/or rehabilitation of hearing impairments in children and adults.  

The open house is free. Tickets for the reception are $35 per person, with proceeds benefiting the Language, Speech and Hearing Center Fund.

To RSVP or more information, please contact Janice Woolsey atJanice.woolsey@csun.edu or call (818)-677-2856.

Get Ready for the Great Southern California ShakeOut!   
www.ShakeOut.org

Get ready to "Drop, Cover and Hold On" for the Great California ShakeOut, the largest earthquake drill in history, on Thursday, Oct. 18 at 10:18 am. 

It is not a question of IF, but WHEN the big one will hit California, so join millions of people, schools, businesses and community-based organizations for this exercise. It's a great way for you, your family, your workplace, or your organization to get better prepared to survive and quickly recover from a major earthquake. 

Last year more than 12.5 million people registered as participants in ShakeOut drills worldwide. 

At the ShakeOut website, www.shakeout.org, you can register as a participant, and it is one of the best resources in the world to find information on how to get prepared to survive, and quickly recover from a major earthquake. It also has huge amounts of information on earthquake preparedness equipment, training, planning, earthquake science, special educational sections for kids, and much more. 

To learn how to register, and to learn how to get prepared, visithttp://www.shakeout.org/california

Open House on Chatsworth Park South Clean-Up...

We are hosting an informational open house with the State Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) and the City Department of Recreation and Parks to update the community and answer questions on the progress of the clean-up at Chatsworth Park South, as well as future activity at the park, and the next steps toward re-opening it to the public. 

Our office has been in constant contact and cooperation with DTSC and Recreation and Parks on the clean-up and ultimate re-opening of Chatsworth Park South. 

Thursday, October 18
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Mason Park Recreation Center
10500 Mason Ave., Chatsworth

The park was closed in February 2008 for safety reasons after lead and other contaminants were discovered at the park. The contamination resulted from clay pigeons used for skeet shooting on the land, which was a shooting range more than 50 years ago before it became a City park. 

We are committed to ensuring that the park is safe for use by the community and getting it open so that families can once again enjoy it. We continue to work closely with DTSC and Recreation and Parks on the contaminant Removal Action Plan, which is necessary to get the park cleaned up and safe for use once again. We are closely monitoring the situation and will announce any progress. 

For more information, contact our District Director, Megan Cottier at (818) 882-1212 or email Megan.Cottier@lacity.org

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 an upcoming free Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) course. 

These courses could make all the difference for you and your family before, during and after a disaster. We applaud Granada Hills North Neighborhood Council and Patriot Oil Community Benefit Trust Fund, administered by the North Valley Coalition, for sponsoring this important public safety resource.  
 
Wednesday Evenings
Oct. 17, 24, and 31. 
Nov. 7, 14, 21, and 28
6:30 pm to 9:00 pm
Knollwood Country Club
Fairway Room
12024 Balboa Bl., Granada Hills

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 visit http://www.cert-la.com/cert-syllabus.pdf. or email cert@ghnnc.org to sign up for free!

Honor a Hero/Hire a Vet Job and Resource Fair...

Businesses from across Los Angeles and Ventura Counties will come together on Thursday, Oct. 18 for the 7th Annual Honor a Hero / Hire a Vet Job and Resource Fair at Warner Center. This is the largest regional job fair aimed at helping returning war veterans, National Guard members, and reservists who need to find jobs as they return to the San Fernando Valley community. 

The Job Fair serves as a one-stop opportunity for entry, middle, and upper- level career opportunities. Come dressed for success and bring multiple copies of your resume. 

The Job Fair is co-presented by The Valley Economic Alliance and the California Employment Development Department (EDD). 

Thursday, Oct. 18
11:00 am to 1:00 pm - Open for Veterans
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm - Open to the General Public 
Warner Center Marriott Hotel
21850 Oxnard St., Woodland Hills

For more information please call The Valley Economic Alliance at (818) 379-7000 Ext. 110 or email egass@economicalliance.org. Job Seeker Hotline - (818) 596-4498. 

SOLID All You Can Eat Pasta Dinner...

Join SOLID (Supporters of Law Enforcement in Devonshire) and our Devonshire Division Police Officers for the 17th Annual SOLID All You Can Eat Pasta Dinner on Friday, Oct. 19 in Northridge. 

Friday, Oct. 19
5:00 pm to 7:00 pm
St. Nicholas Greek Church
9501 Balboa Blvd., Northridge

Come enjoy an unlimited, delicious pasta dinner for just $8 per person! The proceeds go to SOLID, a non-profit organization that provides non-City supplied materials and equipment to the Police Officers who protect and serve our community at Devonshire Community Police Station. 

For more information call (818) 756-9011.  To learn more about SOLID, visitwww.SOLIDDevonshire.org

7th Annual Boy Scouts Stoney Point Clean-Up Day...

Join the Cub Scouts Troop 921 and Venture Crew 921 for their 7th Annual Stoney Point Clean-Up effort and help keep this wonderful nature area and recreational resource clean and beautiful for all. Volunteers will be clearing the numerous walking trails around Stoney Point of dried brush, trash, broken glas, and debris to make the trails more attractive and "user friendly.” 

Troop 921 and Venture Crew 921 are also continuing their pledge to cleaning and maintaining the plaque commemorating the 25 people who lost their lives near Stoney Point in the Sept. 12, 2008 Metrolink train crash. 

Saturday, Oct. 20
8:00 am to 11:00 am
Stoney Point Park
Chatsworth


We are proud to co-sponsor this event with Chatsworth Neighborhood Council, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Ride On Therapeutic Horsemanship, L.A.Works and REI Sporting Goods. 

Chatsworth Neighborhood Council is generously providing coffee, hot chocolate and bagels before the clean-up and hot dogs for lunch after the clean up for registered participant volunteers. REI is providing free T-shirts for registered volunteers, and raffle prizes. There will also be a rappelling demonstration, environmental information and more. 

For more more information, click here

A Year of Emergency Preparedness...

 On January 17, the 18th anniversary of the 1994 Northridge Earthquake, we kicked off our Year of Emergency Preparedness in Los Angeles. 

Throughout 2012, we will be working on legislation, programs and public awareness efforts to help the residents of Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley be prepared for natural or man-made disasters.

Every week, our newsletter will feature a new item in an Emergency Preparedness Checklist. These are simple steps that everyone in Los Angeles should take in order to be prepared for any disaster. If you follow each item on this checklist, you will be highly prepared at the end of the year.

Week 37: Participate in the Great California ShakeOut...
The Great California ShakeOut is coming up on Oct. 18. In addition to helping emergency planners and responders conduct the largest scale earthquake exercise in history, it is a great way to get better prepared. 

At their website, www.shakeout.org, you can register as a participant, and it is one of the best resources in the world to find information on how to get prepared to survive, and quickly recover from a major earthquake. It also has huge amounts of information on earthquake preparedness equipment, training, planning, earthquake science, special educational sections for kids, and much more. 

To see our printable Emergency Preparedness Checklist, with every week's entry, click here or visit our website atwww.CD12.org

Community Clean-Up Effort Transforming Aliso Creek Pocket Park...

Our Field Deputy Semee Park reports this week on an outstanding community clean up effort that is transforming Aliso Creek Pocket Park. 

On Sunday, April 22, 2012, in honor of Earth Day, our office partnered with Northridge South Neighborhood Council and community members on a volunteer clean-up project at Aliso Creek Pocket Park that is transforming a barren, blighted space into a beautiful green space for our community to enjoy.   

The volunteers cleared debris and trash planted four new trees. A neighbor has signed up for the Adopt a Basket Program, to keep a trash receptacle at the pocket park. For this community partnership program, the Bureau of Sanitation installs a trash receptacle and the community member pledges to empty it regularly. To learn more about this program call Semee Park at (818) 882-1212. 

Phase 2 of the project to beautify Aliso Pocket Park continues, with California Nurseries, located nearby, volunteering to help lay out the decomposed granite and gravel.  

This project was initiated by Northridge South Neighborhood Council in response to concerns of neighbors about frequent illegal dumping and graffiti at the pocket park. Our office worked with with the Neighborhood Council to coordinate the clean-up and to provide tools, logistical support, and pick up filled trash bags. If you would like to volunteer to be part of this project, please contact Northridge South Neighborhood Council Board Member Chris Sales at chris.sales@csun.edu. 

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