Garcetti Announces Program to Assist Students in Military Families
SAN PEDRO — On Nov. 12, Mayor Eric Garcetti unveiled a new program that will help deliver essential resources to Los Angeles Unified School District students whose parents or guardians are either veterans or active-duty service members at Leland Elementary School in San Pedro.
Through a new collaboration between the Mayor’s Office of Veterans Affairs, LAUSD, the University of Southern California’s Building Capacity Project and the Los Angeles Veterans Collaborative, the school district will now immediately, upon enrollment, identify students from military families by adding a few simple questions to the district’s mandatory student emergency information forms.
The data collected on the emergency forms will help district and school officials direct critical services and apply for new federal funding for campuses with high enrollment among military and veteran-connected families.
Military and veteran-connected students can experience high levels of stress, and research shows that they are at an increased risk for substance abuse, weapon carrying, victimization by peers, and thoughts of suicide. While the new questions only take up a single line of space on the emergency form, they will help families quickly access critical services — including recreational opportunities, tutoring resources, and advocacy assistance.
Authored by the Building Capacity and Welcoming Practices team at USC, 5,000 resource guides will be distributed throughout the district to assist schools in developing school-based interventions for children in military, Guard, Reserve and veteran families.
LAUSD has already begun responding to this new information, with school-based social workers ready to deploy to campuses as needed.
POLA Imports Drop
SAN PEDRO — On Nov. 12, the Port of Los Angeles reported that imports decreased by 3.3 percent, compared to October 2014. POLA handled 358,602 containers loaded with imported goods in October.
For January through October of this year, loaded imports to Los Angeles were down 3 percent over same period this past year. Loaded exports were down 15 percent.
“The past few months of volumes around and above the 700,000 TEU range show that our terminals, labor and supply chain partners are adjusting to the cargo surges and other fluctuations that come with the larger vessels that are now calling in L.A. – and that’s a good sign,” Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka said.
Exports dropped 14.7 percent to 134,963 TEUs in October. Factoring in empties, which increased 13.1 percent, overall October volumes of 704,588 decreased 1.5 percent compared to October 2014.
For the first 10 months of 2015, overall volumes (6,824,212 TEUs) are down 2.7 percent compared to the same period in 2014.
Import volume also decreased at the Port of Long Beach, by 0.8 percent compared to the same month a year prior. The slow October numbers have been attributed in part to extreme congestion during labor negotiations. Many shippers found themselves with high inventories and less need to import goods to replenish supplies.
Current and past data container counts for the POLA may be found at: http://www.portoflosangeles.org/maritime/stats.asp
LA Harbor Commission Approves $1.8 Million FEMA Grants
SAN PEDRO — Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners has approved three grants from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency totaling $1.8 million. The grants will support Port Police security and operation integration initiatives, as well as cyber security infrastructure.
As a condition of the FEMA Port Security Grant Program — a competitive grant program supporting security enhancements at ports nationwide — the port will contribute 25 percent in additional non-federal funds, or $625,000. The match brings total funding for the three port security initiatives to $2.5 million.
The security projects to be undertaken include integration, maintenance and repair of port security systems; integration of external security video feeds from various government departments, terminals and mobile sources; improvements to the Port’s mass notification system; and infrastructure upgrades that address a variety of cyber risks associated with port complex security.
Veterans Parade Long Beach 2015
POLB Wins Awards at Trade Conference
LONG BEACH — At the 2015 Annual American Association of Port Authorities Awards in Miami, the Port of Long Beach won 22 awards for outstanding security, communications and environmental programs.
The association represents 160 of the leading seaport authorities in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean, and more than 300 sustaining and associate members, firms and individuals with an interest in seaports.
“Virtual Port,” a program that allows the port’s security team to monitor the harbor with surveillance tools and shipping and transit data, won the association’s Best Information Technology Award.
The “West Anaheim Street Improvement Project” won the Best Environmental Improvement Award. The project, which beautified and modernized a heavily traveled corridor in the Harbor district, was recognized for its sustainable design and practices, which included drought-resistant landscaping and low-energy lighting. The project also featured public outreach to inform stakeholders during construction.
The Port of Long Beach’s trade and summer community advertising campaigns won for best advertisements. Both campaigns incorporated the tagline “Better Together,” which referred to the collaboration between the Port and its stakeholders to improve the harbor by making it a safe and efficient place to do business.
Marketing videos, educational programs, and a Wi-Fi/recharging station at the Breakbulk Americas 2014 conference each won praise. In all, the port won 20 communications awards.
The LB LGBTQ Center Announces New Staff, Funding
LONG BEACH — On Nov. 16, The Center Long Beach announced that it has been awarded more $35,000 in funding from four foundations within the past month. Additionally, the organization has filled two key staff positions with funding provided earlier in the year. Ellen Hartwick has been hired to serve as the agency’s clinical director and long-time local domestic violence advocate Giovanna Martinez has been recruited as The Center’s Domestic Violence Services manager.
The Halo Award has granted the organization $25,000 through a competitive application process to expand The Center’s volunteer services and capacity. As part of the application, The Center nominated long-time volunteer Katherine Ford to receive recognition and she will be granted a $5,000 award by Halo for her service to the community. Additionally, The Center received $5,000 from the Pacific Life Foundation, $5,000 in support for their youth services from the Wells Fargo Foundation, and more than $2,000 from Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride to support their ongoing efforts to serve those most in need in Long Beach.
The Center’s new Clinical Director Ellen Hartwick was hired as a result of increased capacity within the organization’s mental health counseling program made possible by more than $20,000 in funding awarded in early 2015 by the Johnson Family Foundation. Hartwick is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with nearly 20 years’ experience working in the field of mental health, advocacy, and support to children, youth, and adult survivors of trauma. She was instrumental in the creation of The Center’s educator’s guidebook on transgender students currently used district-wide in the Long Beach Unified School District. In addition to her work with The Center, Hartwick also provides training and consultation on intimate partner violence at The Children’s Clinic of Long Beach. The Center’s longtime Clinical Supervisor Kerry Deeney will be working with Hartwick to ensure a smooth transition in leadership within the organization’s mental health services department.
Giovanna Martinez brings more than a decade of experience in the field of intimate partner violence support, education, and prevention to The Center. She has been hired to manage the agency’s new domestic violence program developed with the support of partner agency Interval House and funded through a three-year grant awarded by the California Office of Emergency Services. Previously, Martinez served as the Children and Youth Services Coordinator at WomenShelter of Long Beach and she serves as the co-chairwoman of the LGBT Issues Domestic Violence Sub-Committee for the Los Angeles County Domestic Violence Council. She has been recognized for her advocacy on behalf of survivors by End Abuse Long Beach, Soroptimist of Long Beach, and numerous local, state, and national elected officials.
Police Seek Public’s Help in Murder Investigation of LBPD Officer
LONG BEACH — The Long Beach Police Department continues to ask for the public’s help with the murder investigation of Long Beach Police Officer Franke Lewis. Officer Lewis was murdered on December 13, 1975.
On Nov. 10, 2015 the Long Beach City Council approved a $25,000 reward, which raises the total reward to $75,000. On Nov. 3, the Long Beach Police Department announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for the murder of Lewis. At the news conference, police described two potential suspect vehicles as a mid 1970s, black top, blue body Fleetwood Cadillac and an early 1960s white Fleetwood Cadillac.
On Nov. 4, 2015, in an effort to reach any residents who might still live in the area where Officer Lewis’ police badge and police identification were recovered in 1976, homicide detectives canvassed the neighborhood of 915 South Acacia Avenue, Compton. Detectives distributed flyers of the potential suspect vehicles and again urged anyone with information to come forward.
Since the Nov. 3 news conference, detectives have received several tips regarding the vehicles, possible vehicle owners, and possible suspects.
Detectives received information about an individual who spoke of killing a police officer in 1975 or 1976 but didn’t detail the time or place where it occurred. The suspect was described as:
- African-American male
- about 17 years old
- medium build
- black hair
- first name of “Bobby”
- living in the area of Central Long Beach during the time of the murder.
It’s possible “Bobby” drove a black top over blue 1970’s Pontiac Bonneville or Fleetwood Cadillac. A composite sketch of what “Bobby” would have looked like around 1975 has been created and detectives are hopeful the sketch will prompt leads in this investigation.
Detectives also learned that other African-American males and females were present with “Bobby” when the murder occurred. A person of interest is described as:
- African-American female
- between the ages of 18- and 20-years-old at the time
- known by the nickname “Spider.”
Long Beach Police urge anyone who recognizes “Bobby” or who knows the identity of “Spider” to call (562) 570-7244 or visit www.LACrimeStoppers.org.
LB Releases LAEDC Minimum Wage Study
LONG BEACH — On Nov. 13, the City of Long Beach today released the Minimum Wage Study from the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) on the potential benefits and impacts of implementing a citywide minimum wage. The community is encouraged to provide comments at the following upcoming public meetings:
Mayor’s Roundtable, 12 p.m. Nov. 17, Admiral Kidd Park, 2125 Santa Fe Ave.
Long Beach City Council Economic Development and Finance Committee meeting, 4 p.m. Nov. 20, Bay Shore Library, 195 Bay Shore Ave.
Economic Development Commission, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 24, Long Beach City Council Chambers, 333 W. Ocean Blvd.
Army Corps of Engineers Moves Forward with Breakwater Study
LONG BEACH — On Nov. 12, Long Beach reached an agreement with the Army Corps of Engineers to move forward with a 3-year feasibility study to reconfigure or remove the breakwater in the city. The study begins in 2016.
The purpose of the study is to examine the state of the ecosystem in San Pedro Bay and Long Beach Harbor and to determine what, if anything, can be done to improve it.
The breakwater was built in the 40s in part to protect the Navy fleet stationed in Long Beach. The bay was transformed into a waveless body of water. Because the breakwater sits in federally-controlled waters, the city has little, if any, control over modifications made to it.
The Army Corps will determine if ecosystem restoration is possible without damaging existing properties — including the port and coastal residences.
Long Beach and the Army Corps will share the costs of the study. The cost of the study is estimated to be around $3 million. The study will involve more stakeholder input.
Hotel Housekeepers Lead Candlelight March
LONG BEACH — On Nov. 12, Community and clergy alongside Long Beach hotel workers led a candlelight vigil celebrating Housekeeper’s Global Week of Action in which hotel housekeepers across the United States and Canada protested in 13 cities across North America spotlighting safety concerns and poor wages faced by many women who clean hotel rooms.
This action is being taken in conjunction with protests organized by housekeepers in more than 30 nations worldwide this week in a call for fairer treatment of hotel housekeepers across the global hotel industry.
This is the latest step taken by Long Beach hotel workers, the majority of whom are women.
Murder in Long Beach
LONG BEACH — A 26-year-old man was shot at about 9 p.m. Nov. 10, near 14th Street and Gundry Avenue.
Jeffrey Keo of Long Beach succumbed to his injuries a short time after the Long Beach Fire Department took him to a local hospital. He was not a gang member.
While Long Beach Police Department officers were conducting their initial investigation, they found a possible suspect, who lead them on a foot pursuit. The fleeting suspect was not found.
Several people, including one who later was identified as the suspect, were detained.
At the end of the interviews, a 17-year-old resident of Long Beach was booked for murder and a gang enhancement. The suspect’s identity is not being released because he is a juvenile. Detectives are expected to present their case to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office for filing consideration, later this week.
The preliminary investigation indicated a confrontation between the suspect and the victim occurred prior to the shooting.
The investigation remains ongoing. Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to (562) 570-7244 or visit www.LACrimeStoppers.org.
Narcotics Investigation Leads to Discovery of Butane Hash Oil Lab
LONG BEACH — Long Beach Police Drug Investigation Section detectives served a search warrant at a marijuana dispensary, at about 11 a.m. Nov. 10, in the 100 block of East Pacific Coast Highway.
The investigation led to the discovery of materials consistent with the manufacturing of butane hash oil, which is made when tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is extracted from marijuana plants. Butane, which is extremely dangerous due to its flammability and is used during the extraction process, was also found. Butane hash oil can be consumed by smoking, ingestion, or vaporization. Users prefer butane hash oil due to the high concentration of THC.
Jose De La Cruz, 31 years old and a resident of Long Beach, and Miguel Arturo Heredia, 31 years old and a resident of Bell Gardens, were arrested for manufacturing a controlled substance, illegal marijuana sales, and outstanding warrants. They are being held in Long Beach City Jail.
Anyone with information regarding this incident should call (562) 570-7221 or visit www.LACrimeStoppers.org.
Teamsters, Small Business Owners Endorse Jeannine Pearce for Long Beach City Council
LONG BEACH — On Nov. 10, The Jeannine Pearce for Long Beach City Council Campaign announced the endorsements of the Teamsters Local 396, Teamsters Local 848, and Stephanie Howard, owner of Art Du Vin.
“We believe in Jeannine’s steadfast commitment to creating a better Long Beach for all families. Jeannine’s ability to forge coalitions and solve everyday problems through community engagement is what Long Beach needs to take the next step forward,” said Eric Tate, secretary and treasurer of Teamsters Local 848. She is clearly the best choice to lead Long Beach forward.”
Jeannine Pearce is a longtime 2nd District resident and is running for the Long Beach City Council. Her priorities include supporting a thriving and growing local economy, building a clean and safe environment for residents to flourish and a commitment to collaboration with all stakeholders.
Garcetti Announces New Coalition of Transportation Technology
LOS ANGELES — On Nov. 17, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the formation of the Coalition for Transportation Technology, an alliance established by the City of Los Angeles, Metro, and Caltrans to help ensure that the Los Angeles region is among the first to benefit from the coming wave of connected and autonomous vehicles.
“This coalition will ensure that the demands and challenges of this new technology are fully considered as we invest in our infrastructure and plan for L.A.’s transportation future,” said Mayor Garcetti.
In the years ahead, connected and autonomous vehicles have the capacity to reinvent our relationship with the road by introducing new found convenience and safety for people inside and outside of cars. Experts say self-driving cars have the potential to significantly reduce traffic, free up passengers’ time during their commute, and make streets safer for motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists alike.
The mayor was joined by Volvo Cars of North America President Lex Kerssemakers.
EPA Awards $50,000 to LAUSD for Water Conservation Education
SAN FRANCISCO – The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded an environmental education grant of $50,000 to the Los Angeles Unified School District to develop and implement curriculum focused on water sustainability in a changing climate.
Five middle schools and five high schools—a total of 20 classrooms—will learn about water conservation, recycled water, and storm water run-off management. The project will focus on classrooms with a higher percentage of female students and English Language Learners, and is expected to reach at least 520 teachers and students.
Students will learn the science behind water sustainability–such as water chemistry, biology and the significance of water through critical thinking. On-site learning include tours to the local waste water treatment plant where the students will conduct water audits and develop plans of action to reduce water use at schools and at home. LAUSD has partnered with the Los Angeles Sanitation District, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, and the Metropolitan Water District on the project under the One Water LA educational initiative.
For more information on Environmental Education Grants, please visit: http://www2.epa.gov/education/environmental-education-ee-grants