By Veronica Mackey
Tuesday’s council meeting began with a resolution presented to the Asian American
Drug Abuse Program, Inc., a 501(c )3 non-profit with substance abuse prevention and treatment programs throughout Los Angeles County.
Programs include HIV/AIDS outreach and cross training, Drug Court Services for the Inglewood Municipal Courts, tobacco education, and a for-profit business venture, MTC Construction.
Traci Saruwatari, Community Organizer accepted on behalf of AADAP. “We are educating the public about safe storage and disposal of drugs, and we look forward to having another event at the end of April,” she said. “This resolution is a combined effort of community coalitions of substance abuse providers.” Inglewood is the third city in her district to get a resolution passed.
Councilman Alex Padilla introduced an initiative for the City to sponsor Fire Service Day, which was fully supported by the council. The event will take place on May 26 from 9am to 2pm at Fire Station 172, located at 810 Centinela Avenue.
During open comments, Omar Baldwin wants City leadership to focus on affordable housing. He is in support of rent control. “It’s not all about the money, it’s about people,” he said.
Erick Holly of the Inglewood Airport Area Chamber of Commerce responded to the rent control request. “There are 15 cities in the state of California that have rent control,” he said. “These cities have the highest rents. So take it easy on Inglewood because it’s the whole state, not just Inglewood.
A woman feels the City has ignored her request to provide a place for children to have a music theatre. She mentioned the L.A. Philharmonic Orchestra’s youth program that is moving to Inglewood and said 135 youth at City Honors High School need a location. “We need a location for the children. Please let us use (a building) so I don’t have to go around and around with red tape and pay people under the table,” she said.
A property owner in Inglewood complained about his high water bill. He said his bills have hiked since December. Mayor James Butts said he would have someone come out to the location and take a look. There could be a leak or faulty meter.
Councilman George Dotson congratulated Mayor Butts on organizing a “one-of-a-kind mayor’s conference in our beautiful, brand new seniors building. I am so proud to be a part of this council. You can’t imagine how it feels to have other people, other mayors come and see what we’ve been able to do.”
“It’s official now. I like George Dotson best of all,” the mayor joked.
“It was the L.A. County mayor’s meeting, with mayors from all over. Mayor (Eric) Garcetti was there, as well as the mayors from Santa Monica and Culver City, from Pasadena to Pomona,” said Councilman Alex Padilla.
On Saturday morning, Padilla announced, the Inglewood Police Department will participate in an endurance run with 275 other police departments. It’s a relay from Baker, California to Las Vegas.
Councilman Ralph Franklin congratulated Marvin Engineering on celebrating 55 years in business. The company gave a picnic for their 600 employees and families over the weekend, and “the rain did not hold them back,” he said.
Marvin Engineering is the top subcontractor for Lockheed, Councilman Eloy Morales added. “In Inglewood, they continue to be one of the top employers, next to Hollywood Park. Marvin Engineering has a history here.”
Recalling the mayor’s conference, Butts said, “I am so grateful to work with such a great group of employees and elected officials. Where we’ve come to (took) a lot of hard work. We did the hard thing in the dark days. The elected officials (at the conference) were truly in awe of what we have done. It’s not just one person, it’s the elected officials, the staff and residents.
The meeting was closed in honor of Officer Greggory Casillas, a Pomona police officer killed while on duty last week.