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.
Rent Registration System
This week, the Board approved an ordinance that furthers our rent stabilization goals by implementing a rent registration system.
Rent registration systems allow both governmental agencies and tenants to track annual rent increases to ensure that they comply with local and state regulations. Under this system, landlords are required to certify information about their rentals annually. The system can both identify rent-stabilized units that are out of compliance with our ordinance, and allow us to track rent increases on non-rent stabilized units and monitor how quickly rents are increasing.
Opposing Veto Power Over Refugee Resettlement Efforts
I am very pleased the Board passed a motion I co-authored with Supervisor Hilda Solis directing County Counsel to sign on to an amicus brief in the case of HIAS, Inc. v. Trump.
This case challenges an Executive Order issued by the Trump administration that would allow states and counties to refuse to accept refugees, leaving the cities and counties in those areas without a voice in the matter. In response, LA County is joining an amicus brief led by the City of LA and the Public Rights Project.
Trump’s executive order is, predictably, steeped in xenophobia. It completely devalues the contributions of refugees, who often provide substantial returns on the nation’s investment in them by improving local economies.
Countywide Campaign to Stop the Spread of Anti-AAPI Hate During COVID-19
Since the White House began using needlessly racialized terms for COVID-19, Anti-Asian bigotry and even violent incidents have increased. Words matter, especially from those in power. This week, the Board passed a motion authored by Supervisor Hilda Solis, forcefully denouncing such racism and supporting legislation that encourages all public officials to do the same.
The bills we are supporting through this motion call on all public officials in the country to condemn and denounce any anti-Asian sentiments, physical and verbal incidents, and discrimination related to COVID-19. The motion also asks County departments to work with the Human Relations Commission to join the Anti-Hate Initiative by publicizing information about reporting hate to 211.
I stand in solidarity with LA County’s more than 1.5 million AAPI Angelenos and will continue to fight for their safety and civil rights. To report an incident, please visit the Stop-AAPI-Hate website at https://www.asianpacificpolicyandplanningcouncil.org/stop-aapi-hate/.
Preparing Los Angeles County for the Closure of the State’s Division of Juvenile Justice
As part of a revised State Budget, Governor Gavin Newsom is proposing to stop accepting new inmates and eventually closing the State Department of Juvenile Justice, including three facilities. If such a closure is implemented, the County will become responsible for up to hundreds of youth who have been convicted of more serious offenses. This change presents an opportunity to serve these youth closer to their communities and enhance reentry outcomes. However, this proposal also poses fiscal, program, policy, administrative, and legal challenges for the County.
To make sure we meet the challenge of this proposed change, the Board passed a motion I co-authored with Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas, creating a subcommittee within our existing Youth Justice Work Group, already working on placements outside of incarceration, in order to help guide this transition. The subcommittee will consist of representatives from the Courts, Probation Department, Public Defender, District Attorney, and community stakeholders. The group will help us integrate the youth into our system and ensure that, in doing so, we remain aligned with our goals of furthering rehabilitative justice.
Protecting Student Access to Emergency Aid Regardless of Immigration Status
When it comes to federal funding to support students through the COVID-19 crisis, we want to make sure no one gets left behind. This week, the Board passed a motion I co-authored with Supervisor Hilda Solis that directs County Counsel to take the lead in filing an amicus brief in Oakley v. DeVos.
With this amicus, we are fighting for LA County community colleges to receive a fair amount of aid from the CARES Act, which will help schools cover costs associated with changes to the delivery of instruction and to help students defray additional education costs caused by issues related to COVID-19.
Eligibility restrictions imposed by the Department of Education exclude undocumented students, DACA recipients, and other students who are citizens or permanent residents from receiving aid. In this case, we are asking the Court to find these eligibility requirements unconstitutional and to stop the DOE from imposing those restrictions.