Labor Day Weekend is Here

As we near the end of summer, it's time once again to celebrate Labor Day, a work- and school-free holiday full of picnics, barbeques and parades. I love Labor Day because it's the one and only day in this country dedicated to honoring the myriad accomplishments and sacrifices of working people. Continue reading

A Mid-year Review of 2016

This past year, we've celebrated many community accomplishments and made tremendous progress in moving our city forward. In this issue of Our Valley News, we'll take a look back at some of those moments, highlighting the important partnerships and collaborations that have improved the quality of life in our community.  Continue reading

Open for Business

Last March, the Los Angeles Dept. of Water and Power broke ground on a vital project to upgrade our city's aging infrastructure. Built in the 1940s, the existing water pipeline will be replaced with a larger 15,800 feet and 78-inch diameter steel pipe. It's a major transmission pipeline that's responsible for transporting large amounts of water from the Northeast Valley to the Central City area. The improvements will enhance water pressure, capacity and reliability, and better comply with federal and state water quality regulations. Continue reading

Lunching in the East Valley

Summer is a wonderful time to get out of the house and explore your neighborhood. Whether it's trying a new coffee shop or going to a new place for lunch, the East Valley has so many great spots for foodies to enjoy.   Throughout the year, I've had the pleasure of hosting Lunch with Paul community events at local eateries that are committed to serving our city and offer some of the tastiest dishes on this side of the hill. This special edition of Our Valley News takes a look at some of the great places we've explored so far.  If you've joined me for lunch in the past, you know how fun and delicious these events can be. If you haven't, I encourage you to join the fun and support a great local business at the next community lunch. In the meantime, I hope you visit the places featured in this newsletter, along with all the other great Valley eateries that enrich our communities.  Do you have a favorite restaurant, coffee shop or ice cream parlor in your neighborhood? Please tell me about it by emailing paul.krekorian@lacity.org. Your suggestion could be the next spot for Lunch with Paul. Continue reading

Summer in the Valley

I love summer. Although it can get hot in the San Fernando Valley, it's a great time of the year. Not only is school out, but the days are longer and everything seems a bit more relaxed. Families go to parks, pools, ballgames and picnics. People venture out into their communities to try new shops and restaurants. Continue reading

Getting to Work

"What does the City of Los Angeles have to do with job creation?" That's a question I've been asked more than a few times as chair of the City Council's Jobs Committee. My answer always starts with, "A whole lot." Continue reading

LA Is Rising

Last summer, my colleagues and I proudly voted to raise the minimum wage in the City of Los Angeles. By 2020, wages will increase to $15.00 per hour, something that will put more money into the pockets of hundreds of thousands of hardworking Angelenos and increase consumer spending in our local economy. Continue reading

A Matter of Life and Death

Far too many lives are cut short or changed forever by gun violence every day in America. On Wednesday, right as the City Council voted to study how guns used in crimes make it onto LA's streets, we heard the chilling reports about another fatal shooting, this one on UCLA's campus. As an editorial in today's Washington Post points out, the UCLA shooting marks the 186th U.S. school shooting since the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook. That tragic number is outrageous and completely unacceptable. I hope you agree with me that we cannot sit back and endure the status quo any longer.  Continue reading

Memorial Day: Remembering the Brave

  For too many Americans, Memorial Day has become a day for barbecuing and beach trips – a day to shop for mattresses and appliances.  But by being here today, each of you is declaring that above all else, Memorial Day is about remembering. It is about our national memory.  Fortunately, throughout these United States, in bustling cities and in quiet towns, Americans are gathering this morning, as we do here, to remember and to honor the men and women who sacrificed their lives in service to our country so that all of us, and others throughout the world, might live in freedom. Continue reading

Investing in Our Communities

After three weeks of budget meetings, input from 44 city departments and 173 public comments, my City Council colleagues and I just approved an $8.76 billion city budget for Fiscal Year 2016-2017. This is the city's fifth consecutive budget that I've had the pleasure to oversee as chair of the Budget and Finance Committee. Continue reading

We All Rescued the Mission

Two years ago, I stood with my City Council colleagues and local business owners in the charred ashes of a massive fire that brought down the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission's warehouse and emergency homeless shelter in North Hollywood. We were saddened by the loss, but undaunted by the task ahead of us. That day, we asked everyone in the San Fernando Valley and beyond to join us in a campaign to rescue the Rescue Mission.  Continue reading

Transforming Transportation in Our Valley

Over the past 25 years, Los Angeles has experienced a transit revolution. In 1990 we had no subway or light rail tracks. Now, we have 87 miles with 80 stations throughout LA County, including a bustling regional bus and rail hub in North Hollywood. We have more than 2,000 buses on our streets, including the Valley's own Orange Line, a dedicated bus rapid transit that takes tens of thousands of working people from the east to the west Valley (and vice versa) each day. This is all attributable to Metro's good work, along with the courage and will of County residents who demanded more public transit options at the ballot box. But it's clear that traffic still plagues our neighborhoods and our communities need to be more connected. Continue reading

A New Park for Van Nuys

It was all smiles this week when a dozen young children from Hazeltine Elementary helped me welcome Greenwood Square Park to Van Nuys. Not only was I proud to dedicate the city's newest public park, it is the first park in more than a decade to be created through a little-used provision of the state's Quimby Act.  Continue reading

Coming to the Rescue

In May 2014, the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission's homeless shelter and warehouse burned in a tragic fire in District 2. Dozens of families were displaced and the Rescue Mission had to start from square one. My City Council colleagues and I quickly partnered with business leaders and hundreds of generous community members with one mission -- to "rescue the Rescue Mission." It became a rallying cry in the Valley and far beyond. People from across the city donated money and goods, and organized dozens of fundraisers and donation drives, all to get the Rescue Mission back on its feet. Continue reading

Lending a Hand

Homeless is an enormous and seemingly intractable crisis facing our city. It has left an undeniable impact on the livelihoods of individuals and families from the Harbor to the Valley. It has also touched countless families across the nation. As families fight every day to survive, the struggle to provide the basic necessities of a home, food and healthcare continues.  Continue reading