July 2, 2020 Update from Councilmember John Lee

JULY 2, 2020
As we enter into the 4th of July holiday weekend, COVID-19 cases are continuing to rise. It is time for us to recommit ourselves to doing everything we can to stop the virus from spreading. Six of the seven indicators public health officials have been closely monitoring, including hospitalization, infection, and ICU admission rates, are headed in the wrong direction. To say that this is a trying time for our city and our nation is an understatement, but we need to pause and reassess where we are and take the necessary corrective action in order to save lives and prevent our healthcare system from being overwhelmed. We are still very much in the thick of fighting this pandemic. For you and your loved ones, please be safe this holiday weekend.

Defend not Defund LAPD
Yesterday, I voted against the City’s 2020-2021 budget and $150 million in arbitrary cuts to LAPD. If we want to reimagine law enforcement and community policing, we don’t have to look very far to see models that are already working, like at LAPD Devonshire PALS, where the focus is on building relationships of trust between the police and the community. Click here for my full statement.

Additional Council Actions This Week

  • Council voted unanimously to approve my motion instructing LADWP to report back on opportunities and options to provide bill payment aid to L.A. residents for their additional water and power usage resulting from COVID-19 and the Safer at Home order.
  • I voted to support several motions calling for police, public safety, and racial equity reforms. Most notably, one motion seeks to explore removing LAPD from responding to certain non-violent calls and instead require professional mental health experts, social workers, and others to respond.
  • Council voted unanimously to tighten the criteria for new applicants seeking to qualify for the “social equity” cannabis licensing program.
  • Council extended the City’s agreement with Friends of Oakridge for another 5 years.
  • As of July 1st, the minimum wage in the City of Los Angeles is $15 for employees of businesses with 26+ employees. For employees of smaller businesses, the wage is now $14.25 and will reach $15 in 2021. Future wage increases are tied to inflation.


Revisions to Business Operations
Due to the alarming rate at which COVID-19 is spreading in Los Angeles County, the following indoor business operations are closed until further notice:

  • Restaurants (outdoor dining, delivery, and take-out still permitted)
  • Indoor areas of museums, zoos and aquariums are closed
  • All patrons and staff of gyms and fitness centers must wear face coverings and gloves
  • Card rooms and satellite wagering facilities are closed

July 4th Weekend Closures
All parking facilities at state beaches in Southern California will be closed starting tonight at midnight until 5 AM on Monday, July 6. State parks remain open, though measures remain in place to reduce visitation and limit overcrowding. Additionally, firework shows will not be allowed in Los Angeles County to limit and reduce the possibility of crowds gathering.

CD12 Small Business Relief Fund
Funding is still available for the CD12 Small Business Relief Fund. This program is a unique, interest-free loan program for small businesses located in Council District 12. Questions can be directed to Ron.Rubine@lacity.org. The CD12 Small Business Relief Fund is a program made possible through a generous donation from Greg and Jodi Perlman of The Change Reaction, in partnership with Councilmember Lee. To date, 30 CD12 small businesses have received over $350,000 in loans through this program. To apply, click here.

EWDD Support for Small Businesses
The City’s Economic & Workforce Development Department (EWDD) has assembled dedicated staff to assist Small Businesses who may be struggling during COVID-19. To learn more about resources and programs available, click here.

COVID-19 Community Resources
For information about food assistance and other resources and programs to help individuals and families in need during the COVID crisis, click here.


Los Angeles Fireworks 2020 Public Service Announcement from mysafela.org on Vimeo


Streetbox Art Contest
Submit your creative design for a utility box mural on the theme of “Connection” for the Northridge West/Porter Ranch Streetbox Art Project. This Project will transform 14 utility boxes in the San Fernando Valley into works of art. The deadline for submissions is July 10, 2020 at midnight. For more information and to apply, click here.

Fireworks are Illegal in Los Angeles
This Fourth of July weekend, please remember that all fireworks are dangerous and illegal in Los Angeles. If you need to report people using fireworks, use the MyLA311 app on your smartphone. Only dial 9-1-1 in the event of an emergency, such as a fire or injury.

Welcome, Rabbi Becky!
On behalf of CD12, I’d like to welcome Rabbi Becky Hoffman to Temple Ahavat Shalom. For over 50 years, Temple Ahavat Shalom has been a center of spiritual connection for the Jewish community and an important partner in caring for the people of the San Fernando Valley. I look forward to many years of continued partnership serving our Valley residents and communities together.

Plummer and Winnetka Resurfacing
This past week, Street Services began resurfacing Winnetka between Plummer and Prairie. As work continues in the area, please use Corbin or Mason or other alternate routes. Beginning Monday, July 6, Street Services will begin resurfacing Plummer between Tampa and Winnetka. There will be one lane open in each direction from 6:30 AM to 4 PM until work is complete on July 15. Please use Lassen or Nordhoff or alternate routes during this time.

S.A.F.E. Collection Centers to Reopen
L.A. Sanitation’s S.A.F.E. Collection Centers will reopen on July 11, 2020 for household hazardous waste and electronic waste drop-off. For more information about S.A.F.E. Centers, click here. All residents must adhere to COVID-19 guidelines (remain in vehicle, wear face covering, leave materials in unlocked trunk) or be turned away.

Summer Play L.A. with Rec & Parks
The Department of Recreation and Parks is offering a summer program for youth ages 6 to 14 at Mason and Shadow Ranch Recreation Centers. All activities are adapted for social distancing and to ensure the safety of youth and staff. The program runs Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 4:30 PM, July 6 to August 14. The cost is $150 per week with snacks provided. To register, click here.

Voices of CD12
We still have much work to do in the area of racial injustice, but change begins with each of us. Voices of CD12 is an initiative to increase understanding and awareness through sharing personal stories about race and living in L.A. Email your story to Councilmember.Lee@lacity.org. Stories may be shared in the newsletter or on social media.

Neighborhood Councils
Neighborhood Councils serve as advisory bodies to City Council, advocating on behalf of their communities on local issues such as homelessness, housing, land use, public safety, emergency preparedness, parks, transportation, and more. Learn about CD12’s Neighborhood Councils here.

LAPD Devonshire Community Blood Drive
Tuesday, July 14, 2020 from 10AM – 4PM
10250 Etiwanda Ave, NorthridgeMake your appointment at www.redcrossblood.org
Sponsor Code: LAPDDevonshire