On April 28, Councilmember Bob Blumenfield was joined by over fifty constituents for the sixth annual Blumenfield Community Bike Ride. This year Blumenfield highlighted some of his important infrastructure efforts including the Reseda Blvd. Street Improvement Project, new traffic and pedestrian signals, and paths and parks along the LA River. Each year riders of all ages and skill levels join Blumenfield for a family friendly ride through the West Valley.
“It was wonderful to join so many folks to enjoy the West Valley on two wheels,” said Blumenfield. “This ride brings families and neighbors together to appreciate our unique community."
Blumenfield wants to thank Senior Lead Officer Oscar Bocanegra and all the officers from LAPD West Valley Division and LAPD Topanga Division for their help on the ride. The annual outing isn’t possible without their help. Also, thanks to Kaiser Permanente for donating a ‘Kaiser Thrive Bike’ and congratulations to Susan Rorke on winning the raffle!
To learn more, please watch our video here.
Homelessness is the most pressing issue facing our City and continues to be a serious humanitarian and quality of life issue. Recently, I announced that the City Council approved Supervisor Sheila Kuehl’s and my plan to bring Bridge Housing to the West Valley. Last week, our plan took another huge step forward when the County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved using our City's funds to purchase the property. Now that we own the property, Supervisor Kuehl and I will continue to work diligently to get this site rehabilitated so services can open and we can have more tools to address homelessness in the West Valley.
As I mentioned in my last newsletter, the property, located at 7621 Canoga Avenue, had been privately owned, but used to serve as a County mental health facility. Under the plan, the City allocated a conditional grant of $4.3 million to the County to purchase the property and now the County will renovate it and provide no less than fifteen years of Bridge Housing services for local homeless people.
Though this site will be a ‘permanent’ Bridge Housing facility, it will provide homeless people with ‘temporary’ and transitional housing, just like other bridge housing sites opening up around the city. This site will provide housing for no less than 70 people at any given time. Having this site will unlock additional police presence in the vicinity and will enable enhanced enforcement as well.
Thanks to Supervisor Sheila Kuehl for her continued partnership and leadership, soon we will have more permanent resources in our community to address homelessness.
On April 30, Councilmember Blumenfield and the Budget and Finance Committee began hearings on the 2019-20 City Budget. Throughout this week, leaders from every department joined the committee to discuss their priorities and Blumenfield and his colleagues will continue to recommend changes and adjustments to ensure that the more than $10 billion annual budget is properly prioritized.
Blumenfield is focused on ensuring that your City government spends your tax dollars wisely, delivers services efficiently, addresses pressing issues such as public safety and homelessness, continues to restore important services that were gutted during the Great Recession, and operates with accountability and transparency.
Throughout the next two weeks, the committee will continue to deliberate on the budget but if you haven’t already, please take a moment to take Blumenfield’s annual budget survey and let him know your budget priorities.
Recently Councilmember Blumenfield joined LAFD to observe their new drone program firsthand and find out how it will help them better fight fires and save lives. Leveraging technology such as drones to enhance public safety has been a priority for Blumenfield for many years.
“When the smoke is too thick to see through or an emergency is in a hard to get to location, drones are an incredible tool to ensure LAFD can swiftly get to those who need their help most,” said Blumenfield. “Transparency is vital and we must continue to make sure that drones are used in a manner that protects lives but doesn't violate personal privacy.”
As of March 2019, LAFD has flown over 175 emergency missions with their drones and has used their heat signature camera technology to pick up heat signatures of fires from safe vantage points. These drones supplement LAFD’s helicopter team but cost significantly less to deploy, making them great additions to the City’s firefighting team. Over the last few years, LAFD has deployed drones during major catastrophes such as the Skirball Fire and will continue using this technology to monitor fire conditions in future emergencies.
They have also been successfully used to find lost hikers, to obtain real-time images of a fire to help deploy resources more effectively, and to help quickly survey brush clearances. In the future drones may be able to deliver defibrillators and other life saving devices to people in the field even before an ambulance can arrive.
On April 25, Councilmember Blumenfield visited local businesses in Reseda as part of his ongoing effort to listen to and help the small business community in the West Valley.
“Local businesses are the engine of our community and it is important that owners know that we have great services to help,” said Blumenfield. “When people support the small businesses in the West Valley, that money largely stays in the neighborhood and keeps us thriving as a community.”
Blumenfield visited stores such as Standing Bear’s Trading Post, a leatherworking shop for Native American art, custom leather crafts and many other unique items. While visiting, Blumenfield discussed various city resources for small businesses, such as free energy-efficient light panel installation from LADWP and affordable small business loans. Blumenfield also listened to concerns store owners had about public safety and signage issues and discussed strategies to address these problems.
“Helping small business navigate city issues is one of the best ways to connect with the community. It helps our entrepreneurs, it helps their customers, and in the end it helps everybody succeed,” Blumenfield said. “We are always happy to meet with local business leaders during outreach or through my Community Action Team (BobCAT) on economic development.”
Blumenfield is a proud supporter of local business and he and his BobCAT on economic development meet regularly to discuss new exciting initiatives and projects to help business flourish.
Tampa Glass is a small, family-owned business based in Reseda that provides expert custom glass work and installation for customers across the West Valley. Business owner John Occhiuto founded Tampa Glass 40 years ago and ever since it has remained a family business and an important staple of Reseda.
Tampa Glass is run by family members Johnny Occhiuto, Jimmy Lamarca, and many amazing staff who have been part of the team for over a decade. Occhiuto is proud of his staff’s long-term commitment to Tampa Glass, which has made for a reliable, hardworking team. Tampa Glass offers specialty services such as broken glass replacement or new installation of wardrobe mirrors, screen doors, tabletops, shower screens, and many other customizable products and services. To learn more about Tampa Glass, please visit their website here.
7628 Tampa Ave,
Reseda, CA 91335
“Q-TIP" ID# A1853696- Q-Tip is an adorable lap-size sweetheart! This very sweet little boy is timid at the big noisy shelter, and sometimes even shakes when he gets taken out of his kennel. All Q-Tip needs is to get out of the shelter and go home with someone with a quiet home.
"Tommy" ID# A1849088- Tommy will come up to you and gently taps your hand, asking you to pet him. Tommy gets along nicely with the other cats sharing the shelter's community cat room with him. Come adopt super friendly and beautiful Tommy today!
Bring home forever love, smiles, purrs and wags -- come adopt a shelter pet today! Dogs, cats, puppies, kittens, bunnies, all sizes, types and fur lengths, from playful youngsters to gentle, loving seniors -- they are waiting for you at your local CD 3 Animal Shelter! Come fall in love at the West Valley (L.A. city) Animal Shelter at 20655 Plummer St., Chatsworth, (818) 756-9325. See all the L.A. City Shelter animals at http://www.laanimalservices.com/.
On April 24, Blumenfield joined regional leaders for the Woolsey Fire Taskforce Working Group to discuss recovery efforts and how to better plan for the next emergency.
On April 24, Blumenfield joined the Canoga Park Neighborhood Council to meet the new members and discuss the resiliency plan for the West Valley.
On April 27, Blumenfield and team honored St. Catherine of Siena Church for their 70th Anniversary