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.
National Day of Racial Healing
We kicked off the meeting by honoring the National Day of Racial Healing, a national and community-based program designed to bring transformational and sustainable change to communities while addressing the historical and contemporary effects of racism.
Communities all over the country are taking part in this effort, but we were extraordinarily lucky because the Rev. Alvin Herring, W.K. Kellogg Foundation director of racial equity and community engagement, joined us along with other civil rights leaders (above).
As an additional part of the National Day of Racial Healing, our office invited the Rev. Gordon Clay Bailey to deliver the meeting’s invocation. Rev. Bailey heads JUUstice-LA, an affiliate organization of the 13 Unitarian Universalist congregations in Los Angeles County.
Affordable Housing, Faster
I co-authored a pair of motions by Supervisor Ridley-Thomas that will allow us to build affordable housing more quickly by accelerating our investment of Mental Health Services Act and County funds in supportive housing for people living with mental illness and homelessness.
By taking these actions, we are funding an additional 137 supportive homes beyond what we had initially budgeted for this year, as well as supporting the construction of an additional 331 affordable apartments.
Continuing our Commitment to Women’s Equity
Women make up 60% of our LA County workforce. As a continuation of this Board’s commitment to empowering women and fighting to ensure equality in the workplace, I was happy to sign onto a motion by Supervisor Hilda Solis to enhance equity for women in the LA County workplace.
In some job categories in LA County, women earn less than men. They often disproportionately shoulder the burden of child care. We want to be sure that LA County is doing everything it can to support women’s equity and well-being in the workplace in real and concrete ways.
This motion calls for a report to focus on the County’s family, parental, and medical leave, analyze scheduling practices for hourly workers, flexible workplace policies, on-site or nearby child care, and the need for creation of sponsorship or mentoring programs to advance women in the workplace.
$70 in your Pocket
Assessor Jeffrey Prang joined us for a motion by Supervisor Janice Hahn to declare “Homeowners’ Property Tax Exemption Month,” to promote an easy way for qualifying homeowners to earn a quick $70 through a little-known exemption.
If you own a home, and it is your principal place of residence on January 1, you may apply for an exemption of $7,000 from your assessed value. Also, there are other benefits to the exemption, for instance, residents may be eligible for future tax-deferral benefits when passing your home to a child or grandchild.
Learn more: The Homeowners’ Property Tax Exemption
We closed our meeting by adjourning in the memory of Matt Palazzolo, a young, bright light in the West Hollywood activist community.
He worked as an actor and writer but was also known as a “Prop 8 baby” who launched into activism with the “No on Prop 8” campaign. He also served for eight years on WeHo’s Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board as well as serving on the Christopher Street West board.
Matt was taken from us too soon, but his commitment to justice and equality lives on in the memories of all the souls he touched during his time with us.