Posted December 9, 2015 by The Argonaut in Columns
The No. 1 Issue of Their Lives

Re: “Letters to the Future,” Cover Story, Dec. 3

Kudos to The Argonaut for being a community organizer, educator and consciousness-raiser in my new home.

I recently moved here from Massachusetts and, thanks to you, was able to participate in the “Breach the Beach” climate justice march in Santa Monica last Sunday at the start of the Paris Climate Change Conference.

I will use the Dec. 3 issue and its important coverage about climate meltdown, especially the “Letters to the Future,” to help educate my grandchildren (who unfortunately could not attend the march with me) on the most important issue facing them for the rest of their lives.

Mary E. Hobgood
Marina del Rey

Marina Lease Approvals Lack Transparency  

Re: “Tiny Wetlands Turn into Battleground,” News, Nov. 25

Thanks for a great article on the meeting about the proposed wetlands park next to the hotels being built on Via Marina. However, I believe there is a much bigger story regarding the lack of transparency for the proposed new hotel complex next door.

If I were meeting with county policymakers, I would ask the following:

Please disclose all conflicts of interest, including your relationship to the developers. What ethics rules must the L.A. County Board of Supervisors follow regarding conflicts of interest, and are there any real penalties for breaking them?

Please make available a copy of the proposed lease agreement. What public notice has there been as to the lease terms?

What other potential lessees were contacted about the availability of this property, and how was it advertised? Were there other bidders?

This whole process should be tabled until 60 days after the proposed lease has been made widely available to the public. How can this lease be legally approved without broad public disclosure of the proposed lease document?

Why is the board so anxious to approve this project when a majority of the residents nearby seem to strongly object?

Stanley Burnstein
Marina del Rey

Street Services Missed the Mark in Mar Vista

Dear Santa,

All I want for Christmas is a flat sidewalk and street. How lovely it would be that my neighbors and local kids could safely walk in front of my home.

In addition, Santa, I would love it if the weekly street sweeper actually swept in front of my home. The driver takes a wide berth avoiding the front of my property because he would get stuck on the giant pavement lumps from the city-owned tree roots.

L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin was kind enough to reply to the letter I wrote to The Argonaut last year about my street maintenance problems. I was thrilled to hear him assure me he would see to the repair. Sadly, the Bureau of Street Services simply slapped more asphalt on the gaping pitch in the sidewalk, not leveling it, and now it’s worse than ever — vibrating when you walk on top of it from the large air gap underneath.

Lastly, Santa, please gift the Bureau of Street Services workers personal pride of a job done correctly!

Tina Segler
Mar Vista


Re: “Art Follows Commerce,” This Week, Nov. 25

Sounds more like Councilman Mike Bonin sowing the seeds of the rich and well-off to grow Mar vista into a rich-kids-only weekend playground. I’ve lived here my whole life. The only people who actually use the streets around here are the working-class types — you know, the “not-so-richy-rich” people who won’t be able to afford to eat in those Abbot Kinney Boulevard-inspired restaurants and coffee shops. On weekends you’ll see the gentrifiers creep out of their big-box houses and head over to the Mar Vista Farmers Market for their chance to be in some sunshine, and then they go back home. And that’s the only time you’ll ever see these gentrifiers “walk” or “bike.”

This is just another example of how Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Great Streets Initiative caters to the rich and well-off. Hardworking working-class people have used these streets since the very first streets were built in Los Angeles, and we deserve to live here just as much as the gentrifiers do.

The streets are for everyone. Great Streets isn’t economic rejuvenation. It’s economic favoritism for the rich in Mar Vista.

Gabriel Martinez


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