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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~9th Circuit Court of Appeals Heard Desertrain vs. City of Los Angeles; Looks Like LA City Living in Vehicle Law is Unconstitutionally Vague
December 6, 2013
Pasadena CA, December 5, 2013— The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments today regarding Desertrain vs. the City of Los Angeles, a Venice Beach lawsuit.
The vagueness of Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC) 85.02, the city ordinance making it illegal to habitate in a vehicle, was the main topic for the oral arguments presented by Civil Rights Attorney Carol Sobel.
LAMC 85.02 was used during a concerted Venice homeless eradication effort. This effort included a special Los Angeles Police Task Force that arrested, towed, ticketed, and threatened homeless people accused of living in a vehicle.
The lawsuit was originally filed in 2010 alleging that the City of Los Angeles violated the Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments, and the Americans with Disabilities Act. The case was not successful in the lower federal court, but was appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by Sobel.
The three judge panel especially questioned the enforcement criteria and lack of duration for LAMC 85.02. “The City Attorney had difficulty answering the questions posed by the judges” according to plaintiff, Steve Jacobs-Elstein.
Venice is a special coastal community historically known for the diversity of its population; a community known for acceptance and tolerance. It is home to one of the largest free clinics in the country and provides homeless services second only to the skid row area in Los Angeles.
As Venice property values continue to soar, comes an influx of newer residents who can afford million dollar buildings by the sea, and hardships increase for those who can no longer afford to be housed in the community.
Surely, with all this new wealth, better solutions can be created.
Justice Committee & Media Group http://www.justice.wetnostril.net
November 29, 2013
The Venice Neighborhood Council will hold a special public board meeting 7pm Monday, Dec 2 at Westminster Elementary School at 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd to vote on a number of motions that pertain to public safety on the Venice Boardwalk.
This summer staff and representatives from The Mayor’s office, the City Attorney, Council District 11, Recreation & Parks, LAPD, LAFD, Bureau of Street Services, DOT, and Bureau of Engineering conducted a site visit at Venice Beach to determine ways to make the areas safer. A formal Needs Assessment for Venice Beach Public Safety was submitted by the Department of Rec and Parks to LA City Council’s Arts, Parks, Health, Aging and River Committee for approval. Councilmember Mike Bonin has asked that the Venice community and the Venice Neighborhood Council have a chance to take a position on the assessment before it is voted upon.
Since that time the VNC and its Ocean Front Walk Committee have hosted several public meetings and a town hall to discuss and weigh support for the assessment.
On Monday, November 25 the OFW Committee passed 12 motions that in large part reject many of the city’s recommendations within the assessment, including retractable bollards and security cameras. The committee added several motions, including one to support increased maintenance of the bike path, and one to support the voluntary winter storage program. The Board will vote on the 12 OFW motions on Monday before issuing its recommendation to Councilmember Mike Bonin and the city.
November 19, 2013
Discussion by VNC Joint Committee of the Los Angeles city’s Ocean Front Walk (OFW) public safety needs assessment as presented at the OFW Public Safety Town Hall on 10/29/13.
PT 1: A joint meeting of three (3) committees (Ocean Front Walk, Public Safety & Visitor Impact) was held on Thursday, November 7, 2013. Scheduled for 6:00 pm, committee members arrived late, delaying the start of the meeting for half an hour. It was a long meeting, lasting almost 3 hours. This video version has been edited and repetitious discussions have been removed, without losing the essential information of the meeting.
Item 1 - AUTOMATED RETRACTABLE BOLLARDS (estimated cost by the city: $1.2 million).
PT 2: Motions & votes made on: Item 1 – AUTOMATED RETRACTABLE BOLLARDS; Item 2 – GATE & BOLLARD SYSTEM; discussion on Item 3 – HARD STREET CLOSURES.
PT 3: Motions on: Item 3 – HARD STREET CLOSURES.
PT 4: Motion and vote on: Item 3 – HARD STREET CLOSURES. New motions introduced on REMOVAL OF TEMPORARY BOLLARDS & TYPES OF SIGNS AT OFW (on side streets). Item 4 – SECURITY CAMERAS and P.A. SYSTEM ON OFW. Motion was split into 1) SECURITY CAMERAS 2) P.A. SYSTEM. Discussion, motion and vote on Item 5: LIGHTING UPGRADE ON OFW.
Worth watching to keep up to date on the latest Ocean Front Walk (aka Venice Boardwalk) issues.
Stay tuned…Peace, SOV