Blumenfield Leads Creation of LA-Israel Cooperation Task Force

Historic partnership follows from recent accord signed by Brown, Netanyahu in March.

LOS ANGELES, CA – Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today secured City Council support for the establishment of a task force to facilitate the exchange of ideas and innovation between Israeli companies, education communities and non-profits and their counterparts in the City of Los Angeles. 

Councilmember Blumenfield shakes hands with Jacob Segal of the Southern California Israel Chamber of Commerce (SCICC), following the unanimous vote in favor of establishing the Los Angeles/Eilat Innovation and Cooperation Task Force, May 23, 2014.
Councilmember Blumenfield shakes hands with Jacob Segal of the Southern California Israel Chamber of Commerce (SCICC), following the unanimous vote in favor of establishing the Los Angeles/Eilat Innovation and Cooperation Task Force, May 23, 2014.

The Los Angeles/Eilat Innovation and Cooperation Task Force builds on the 55 year-old Sister City relationship with Eilat and is designed to promote collaboration and advancement in technology investment, business development and research opportunities in clean technology, water resources, solar energy and environmental technologies throughout Los Angeles and the State of Israel.

“Israel is a true start-up nation,” said Blumenfield. “They have made the desert bloom, launched satellites into orbit, led the world in microprocessor and cellular technology, and even advised our own airports in security matters. As we grapple with a changing environment and the economic challenges that go with it, it only makes sense that a start-up City like Los Angeles partner with Israel.”

Joining Councilmember Blumenfield in Council Chambers was the Consul General of the State of Israel in Los Angeles, David Siegel.

"We are very proud of our 55 year sister city partnership between Los Angeles and Eilat. The two cities share many things in common and this motion is an opportunity to further strengthen the cooperation between Los Angeles and Israel,” said Siegel. “Through this task force we will be able to identify opportunities where Israel can assist Los Angeles on issues like water recycling and conservation, renewable energy, and climate change."

The task force builds on a recent memorandum of understanding between California and the State of Israel based upon legislation introduced by then Assemblymember Blumenfield in 2009. In March, Blumenfield joined Governor Jerry Brown and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as they signed the agreement.

Testifying with Consul General Siegel were Glenn Yago of the Milken Institute and Lee Wallach, founder of Faith2Green. Both speakers spoke to the myriad opportunities for substantive cooperation on issues as diverse as water scarcity, port security and solar technology.

Also speaking in favor of the task force was Jacob Segal of the Southern California Israel Chamber of Commerce and Jacob Lipa of the Los Angeles Business Council.


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