News flash! Every week, following the Board meeting, Supervisor Kuehl picks five items you might find interesting, important, and/or fun. It’s your way to get a quick rundown of several highlights of the meeting in no more than 5 minutes! Looking for more? Click here to get the entire agenda.
Public Health Update
Given this explosive current surge in diagnoses, hospitalizations and even a slight uptick in deaths from COVID, it’s even more important for us to take real steps to make sure we upgrade our masks to well-fitting medical-grade ones like N95 or KN95 as well as seriously pushing those close to us to get vaccinated and to be vaccinated and fully boosted, ourselves.
In order for us to keep our schools open it is important that all age-appropriate kids are vaccinated for their and their peers’ health and safety! Vaccines are the best and most powerful way to protect all individuals from severe illness. The evidence is clear – people who are fully vaccinated and boosted are much, much safer from the threat of Omicron. Vaccines are now approved for children ages 5 and up and boosters are recommended for children 12 and up! Find vaccination locations here!
Our hospitals, ERs, and ambulance systems are stressed to the max from the influx of COVID patients and because of staffing shortages (medical staff are getting sick too!) You can help alleviate this stress on these systems by delaying or avoiding high-risk activities and only going to the hospital ER or calling 911 in case of real emergencies. People should not be going to the ER to get a COVID test or if they have only mild symptoms. Find testing locations near you here!
90 Units in 3SD
We are still facing a significant housing crisis in LA County where too many families struggle to find housing and permanent shelter. It’s a problem that we face daily on our streets and need to take even more steps to address.
This week the Board moved to fund a multi-family housing development in the Third District— The 90-unit Corazón del Valle II Project—which will bring critically needed family housing to the San Fernando Valley in Van Nuys.
Anti-Trafficking Month in LA County
Human Trafficking is a significant issue across all of Southern California. Here in LA County, the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office operates the Human Trafficking Section to prosecute traffickers who exploit victims. The entire issue, however, needs more attention to bring it out of the shadows.
This week the Board declared January Human Trafficking Prevention Month in LA County. If you need more information on Human Trafficking and ways to find resources, you can get additional information on the District Attorney’s Human Trafficking Victim Assistance Program here!
Illegal Cannabis Operations
Illegal cannabis operations continue to undermine the hope and the will of the people who voted to legalize recreational cannabis in order to create a system that assured consumers of product safety while prohibiting cannabis access to minors. These illegal grows have caused deep neighborhood concerns, created fire and public safety issues and also been responsible for the stealing of public water resources.
This week the Board passed a motion that puts teeth in enforcement and ensures that unpermitted growers and dispensaries face stiff penalties in order to deter these operations from continuing.
You can read about the County’s Office of Cannabis Management here!
I adjourned the meeting in memory of Dwayne Hickman, my dear friend of over 60 years, and Many Loves of Dobie Gillis co-star, who passed away last week from complications of Parkinson’s disease.
It was such a joy and a privilege working with Dwayne, a true professional, a good man, a fine talent, a generous actor (always playing the straight man and giving us the laugh lines), and still one of the funniest people I’ve ever known. We grew up together on-screen and remained great friends. I’ll never forget the warm, strong public support he gave me when I came out at a time when it was tough facing the national news outlets. And the same when I first put my toe in political waters in 1994. But that was Dwayne. A standup, sweet guy until the end, he’ll be deeply missed by so many whose lives he touched. My deepest sympathies to Joan and Albert, John, and all his family and friends.