FROM Gary Blasi
Progress Report on L.A.'s Homeless Problem Los Angeles city leaders have promised ambitious efforts to tackle L.A.’s daunting homelessness problem, but the city has a long way to go before those efforts are implemented. Will a recent report that found that homelessness is up again across the city and county be the catalyst for more immediate action?
LA County and Homes for the Homeless LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl calls it an "unprecedented financial commitment" — if she and Mark Ridley Thomas can get one of their three other colleagues to go along. They want to spend $100 million a year on affordable housing from a County budget of $27 billion, as a way to help people who are already homeless and others who are in danger of being.
Making L.A.: Housing the Homeless Los Angeles is having its worst homeless crisis in years. More than 44,000 people live on streets, in cars and in shelters. That’s 12 percent more than two years ago. Encampments are up 85 percent as well. Mayor Eric Garcetti promised to end chronic homelessness by the end of next year, and to end veteran homelessness this year. But that’s proving to be difficult. Last week, Garcetti moved the deadline to next summer.
New Study Finds Growing Homeless Population A new study paints a bleak picture of LA County’s homeless situation. There are 13,000 new homeless people a month, according to the Economic Roundtable, a nonprofit research group based in L.A. Driving around, you’ve probably seen evidence of this: encampments under overpasses, and streets lined with overflowing shopping carts. Two city ordinances aimed at cleaning things up were implemented in July. But they’re controversial, confusing, and unevenly enforced.
Homeless Vets Mayor Eric Garcetti has promised today to end homelessness among veterans by the end of next year. It’s a pledge the White House has asked mayors around the country to make. And today, the mayor and First Lady Michelle Obama were in Century City unveiling plans to make good on their promise.
Homeless Vets and the VA The number of homeless American veterans has dropped in the past two years, but Los Angeles still has 6000, roughly 10 percent of the nation's total, and a recent lawsuit says many ought to be housed on Veterans Administration property on the Westside of LA. Some 387 acres were dedicated for that purpose back in 1888, but since the 1960's, much of the land's been converted for rental-car storage, a hotel laundry, the UCLA baseball team and the Brentwood School. This week, the VA issued a press release describing plans for modernization.
Counting the Homeless in LA County Despite the economic recession, the number of homeless people in LA County has dropped by 38%. In 2007, the count was 68,000; this year it's put at 43,000 . That's according to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, or LHASA, which took its latest census in January.
L.A.’s Safer Cities Initiative, One Year Later LA’s Safer Cities Initiative was launched just a year ago to address the homeless living on ‘Skid Row’, a square mile of downtown Los Angeles. The area was flooded with police officers and crime has dropped by 40%. Mayor Villaraigosa says he wants to “continue the momentum.” But what is likely to happen next? At UCLA , law students reviewed some 15,000 pages of public records from the LAPD , the City Attorney’s Office and the city’s Homeless Authority . They also interviewed more than 200 people to come up with a one year assessment.
Revisiting showrunner Steven Bochco on his memoir Steven Bochco, the writer-producer behind record-breaking Emmy winners Hill Street Blues, LA Law and NYPD Blue, fought battles with everyone from out-of-control actors to network censors in his long career. He isn’t afraid to tell those tales in his memoir, Truth Is a Total Defense. This week we revisit the conversation where he shared some of his favorite stories with us.
Previewing James Comey's blockbuster testimony Former FBI director James Comey testifies Thursday in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee, but his opening statement has been released. In it, he says he felt pressured by Donald Trump to declare loyalty to him and publicly clear him of any wrongdoing in the Russia investigation.
Securing Public Spaces, Super Wealthy Asians Vehicles are increasingly being used as weapons, as seen in the London Bridge attack over the weekend and in New York’s Times Square last month. The Compton-based company Calpipe is designing security bollards to help make public spaces safer. And novelist Kevin Kwan satirizes the “crazy rich” Asian jet set and their luxurious tastes in his latest book, “Rich People Problems.”