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Los Angeles cruised through a list of issues at Cal State Northridge Tuesday in the second of the "Talking About Los Angeles" series of interviews with mayoral candidates.
Moderator Christine Essel, the CEO for the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency, started off the event by saying that she had known Perry for 20 years.
Questioned by Essel, Perry touched on redevelopment, jobs, housing, transit, education, pensions and the city's budget deficit.
Patch is a co-sponsor of the series, which was organized by the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, a Latino voter participation organization; and Cerrell Associates, a Los Angeles political consulting firm. This interview was hosted by Associated Students of California State University, Northridge.
Calling the state of the city "fragile," Perry said conditions have gotten worse, not better, as the state has released prisoners into the neighborhoods, and social services are under continued strain.
"We are at a crossroads," she said, pointing to a lack of new jobs, failing infrastructure, an expanding transit system, a budget crisis and a need for housing stabilization.
Redevelopment can bring "economic rebirth to areas where there was no development," and communities can be rebuilt using a public-private partnership, she said.
"I think transit-oriented development works in certain areas," but single-family neighborhoods need to be protected, she said.
Calling for paying more attention to the needs of 20-and-30-year-olds will help the city "replenish and keep growing," especially downtown, she said.
Perry said jobs can be expanded with apprenticeships and cooperation with community colleges, and the city's expanding hotel industry needs culinary arts students. "We have a very eager workforce ready to go to work," she said.
Turning to education, Perry said she wants to serve as an ex-officio member of the Los Angeles Unified School District board and become involved in the district's strategic planning. She pointed to successes she said she has had placing park land next to schools, and said she believes in "pushing money down to where the principals are."
On the city's deficit, Perry said, "Don't base opinions on speculative or imaginary revenue." She called the plan to sell the city's parking garages a "bad idea, a one-time solution."
"Be honest with the public," she said.
"We need to create additional pension tiers for people who have yet to be hired," Perry said. "It's important to the long-term survival of our city."
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For more information on the "Talking About Los Angeles" series, visit its website at www.talkingaboutla.com.
Other candidates who have committed to appear in the series are City Controller Wendy Greuel and radio talk-show host Kevin James. Dates and locations for their conversations have not yet been announced. Councilman Eric Garcetti was the .