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Push for local jobs in the second district

Support a Project Labor Agreement for the Crenshaw/LAX Light Rail Line at the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority meeting on September 22, 2011. The Metro Board of Directors will vote on a proposal to establish an agency-wide Project Labor Agreement (PLA) to implement the new Construction Careers Policy at Metro.  The Construction Careers Policy and the PLA will ensure that at least 30% of total construction hours worked on a project are performed by residents targeted from areas characterized by high unemployment along project routes and within L.A. County.

Metro Board Room, 3rd Floor
One Gateway Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Thursday, September 22, 2011, 9:00 AM

Other items of interest on the agenda:

  • Approval of the final Environmental Impact Report for the Crenshaw/LAX Light Rail Line
  • Adoption of an agency-wide Renewable Energy Policy that will impact the Crenshaw/LAX Light Rail Line

RSVP: Melissa Hernandez at MIHernandez@bos.lacounty.gov

Let your presence be your voice!


[Download the flyer here.]

It’s official. Construction for phase 2 of the Expo line begins.

Shovels in hand and hard hats on, the nine member Expo board punctured the dirt commencing the construction of Phase 2 of the Expo Line. The groundbreaking of Phase 2 initiates construction for the portion of the Expo Line that will run from Culver City to Santa Monica and connect to Phase 1. In the next few months, Phase 1 will run from downtown Los Angeles to Culver City. Phase 2, scheduled to open in 2015, will run from Culver City to Santa Monica. Once completed, the 15.2 mile Expo line will give commuters the option of traveling from downtown Los Angeles to Santa Monica by rail and pass through 19 station stops, including ones at the University of Southern California, Exposition Park, the Mid-City Communities, the Crenshaw District, Culver City, and West Los Angeles; the line also will connect to the upcoming Crenshaw/LAX Transit Corridor.  According to Expo staff, by 2030, approximately 64,000 passengers will ride the Expo Transit Line each day, making it one of the most heavily used light rail lines in the country.  Aside from connecting communities on the Westside to downtown Los Angeles, the Expo Line is expected to shorten commutes, lower greenhouse gas emissions from cars, provide fast and reliable public transportation services and increase the number of commuters who use the public transportation in Los Angeles County.

Of its notable attributes, construction for Phase 2 of the Expo Line is the first transit project in recent memory with a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) and Construction Careers Policy, mandated by the Expo Board.

[pullquote_right] “In short, this is an opportunity for taxpayers to benefit from their own tax dollars,” said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.[/pullquote_right]The Construction Careers Policy and the PLA ensure that at least 30% of total construction hours are from residents who live within five miles of Phases 1 and 2 of the project and within L.A. County zip codes where unemployment is high. In addition, this provision sets aside job opportunities for disadvantaged workers, such as those who are homeless, are high school drop-outs or who have criminal records.

“It is vitally important that our transportation developments dovetail with economic development as much as possible, and this transit project will not only improve the quality of life for thousands of commuters, it will also provide the community with much needed jobs,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas. “In short, this is an opportunity for taxpayers to benefit from their own tax dollars.”

In mid-March Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and City Councilman Herb Wesson championed the implementation of a Project Labor Agreement and Construction Careers Policy for Phase 2 of the Expo Line. The hiring provisions will serve to ensure local residents have access to the thousands of jobs created by the $1.5 billion Expo line rail project.


Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas on LA County redistricting

When redrawing the boundaries of the County, we have a constitutional obligation to follow the law, including and specifically the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Why is that particular piece of law so important for us to keep in mind? Because the Board has a record of failing to do so. We failed to be guided by its requirements in the 1990s and as a result, the courts re-drew the lines of our districts for us.

That should be a sobering memory.

We should make every effort to avoid having any other entity engage is what is the
fundamental responsibility of the Board — redistricting the County in a way that adheres
to the law.

I understand the concerns engendered by the prospect of change — by the prospect of
new communities and new borders; these concerns are natural and understandable. The
purpose of redistricting, however, is neither to preserve the status quo nor to engage in
social engineering. It is to undertake a dispassionate appraisal of the County’s
population and to re-draw lines according to what is required by law.

So I want to address the recent accusations that the maps submitted by myself and Supervisor Gloria Molina — maps that create a second Latino-majority district — are the
products of racial gerrymandering. There is no such effort or intention to do so. It is incumbent upon the Board, however, to acknowledge the growth of the Latino population in the County, to re-draw the lines in accordance with that growth and most importantly,
to avoid a repetition of past mistakes.

[Download the complete statement here.]
[Download the full Community Empowerment Plan S2 Map here.] [For more general information on redistricting, visit the LA County Redistricting site.]

Below is commentary made by Lynwood Mayor, Aide Castro, and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher partner, George Brown on the September 6 board meeting.


Another successful Hollywood Bowl complimentary ticket program

This season, Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, through the generosity of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, distributed approximately 2,500 tickets to 120 organizations.

Concert goers were treated to a wide variety of music such as classical, jazz, blues, voices and guitars, and Latin jazz.

Here is some feedback from the organizations:

“Thank you for your donation of tickets for the Hollywood Bowl’s En Fuego…your support for the clients of Didi Hirsch’s S. Mark Taper Foundation Center is greatly appreciated.” ~Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services

“At one point, looking up into the sky and listening to orchestra, the open sky and the universe lay before me. I thought, the expansiveness of the universe is massively beautiful and truly all things are possible. The thought and evening will forever remain with me. Thank you for the opportunity to be so many friends and family.” ~A Community of Friends

[pullquote_right] “Our sincere thanks for providing our students with the opportunity to experience the LA Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl; this experience will be etched into memory for years to come!” ~Junior Blind [/pullquote_right]

If you wish to participate in next year’s complimentary ticket program and are a non-profit organization which is located in, or serves the residents of, the 2nd Supervisorial District, please submit the following information along with the name of your organization.


*Please Note: Mention that you would like to apply for tickets for 2012 and include your title and phone number in the body of the submission to be elligible.

Thousands attend job fair in search of work

More than 5,000 job seekers headed down to the job fair at the Crenshaw Christian Center in South Los Angeles in search of work. The job fair hosted by members of the Congressional Black Caucus, was the last stop on the “For the People Jobs Initiative” ending the five city tour that included stops in Cleveland, Ohio; Detroit, Michigan; Miami, Florida; and Atlanta, Georgia.

All day, attendees flocked to the various booths to speak to over 150 employers from various industries such as Technology, Transportation, Education, Government, Entertainment, Non-Profit, Retail, Health, Finance, and Construction.  Among the employers was Skanska/Rados who was recently awarded a $542 million contract by the Exposition Construction Authority for phase 2 of the Expo Corridor light rail.  Clark Construction who was recently awarded a $151 million design-build contract by the Board of Supervisors to renovate the County’s historic Hall of Justice also hosted a booth accepting resumes from job-seekers.

Hawthorne resident Cheryl Maniece noted, “There are too many people out of work.  I’m not understanding why that is.  This is an affluent nation.”

As part of the requirement for participating employers in the job fair, each employer had to have jobs openings readily available.  The crowd of attendees came to the job fair professionally dressed, ready to network, and with resumes in hand.  Job seeker, Micheaux Fortson, captured the sentiment of the day.  “America is in need.  All generations, ages, races, everyone here needs a job.  I definitely need one.”