Planning Department to grow

first_imgA plan to add 20 positions to the city Planning Department is designed to clear a long-standing project backlog and look at long-term challenges. The new planners would work on housing, transportation, local community plans, the revitalization of the L.A. River and establishment of a new Office of Historic Preservation. “Los Angeles is currently facing some incredibly tough challenges: a housing shortage, issues of sustainability, ever-worsening traffic,” said Bud Ovrom, deputy mayor for economic development, in a prepared statement. “New planners are strengthening the department precisely to help craft solutions to these problems.” The new positions, which would bring the Planning Department’s staffing to about 300 people – half of them planners – will be paid for with existing agency funds, said Jane Blumenfeld, head of the Citywide Planning Division. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson The hiring is possible now because city officials cleared away bureaucratic impediments at the urging of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Blumenfeld said. The expansion comes during a period of transition as city leaders search for new directors for both the Planning and Transportation departments. “The new director will have people to assign tasks to now; the more planners, the more the new director can accomplish,” Blumenfeld said. “We’re also trying to assign staff that aligns with the mayor’s agenda for how the city’s going and his interests in planning.” A critical audit by city Controller Laura Chick issued on Halloween also helped speed up the hiring, Blumenfeld said. Chick’s report scolded the agency for inefficient operations and for having dozens of unfilled positions at a time when the city is growing rapidly. But on Wednesday she praised the department’s response to the audit. “I am enthused by the Planning Department’s swift response in implementing major recommendations from my October audit,” Chick said. “It is particularly heartening that the interim director, Mark Winogrond, took immediate action. This is exactly how audits can be used by city managers as road maps in implementing positive and effective change.” Communities have felt the impacts, as they often have little time to learn about and offer input on significant developments, said Edwin Ramirez, president of the Pacoima Neighborhood Council. Ramirez, one of the Neighborhood Council leaders working on a formal cooperative agreement with the Planning Department, said he hopes the new planners can help the agency look beyond individual projects. “They allowed all these developments which are needed and good for the community, but they’re not including the infrastructure for traffic and economic development,” he said. Valley Industry and Commerce Association Chairman Bob Scott echoed the sentiment, adding that if the expansion reduces the project backlog, it will be good for the local economy. “The developers and the people who make the investments in the communities, they make investments in properties and projects and when these things drag out for years at a time, that can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars or millions of dollars of added expense,” he said. Dan Laidman, (213) 978-0390 dan.laidman@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Paolo Soleri graduated from the Politechnico in T

first_img Paolo Soleri graduated from the Politechnico in Torino with highest honors and a Ph.D. in architecture in February 1946. He received a grant given to outstanding students; at that time, just after the war, the grant amounted to about ‘6 lb. of butter’. Soleri wrote F.L. Wright expressing his desire to study at Taliesin and was accepted. As it was the custom with students who could not afford Wright’s already high student fees, Soleri was initially assigned to work on the the kitchen and then to be personal aid at the dining table for the Wright family. Soleri became an apprentice to Wright, working primarily in the kitchen as a waiter and dishwasher, and also as a gardener and construction worker at both Taliesin East (Wisconsin) and Taliesin West (Arizona). Soleri also became a personal waiter to Mr. and Mrs. Wright. Soleri was still learning English while at Taliesin. He built a very simple shelter on Taliesin grounds, as other Wright’s apprentices do, as living quarters. Paolo studied with F.L. Wright for 18 months. March 24, 2005 The board of directors of the Taliesin Fellows held its annual meeting for Taliesin Fellowship, FLlW Staff and former apprentices of the FLlWSA at David Dodge,a long-time fellow at Taliesin, designed and built this house on his property adjacent to Taliesin West. [Photo:tt & text: sa] last_img read more

Rep Bizons plan offering fresh start to Youth ChalleNGe grads signed into

first_img Categories: Bizon News 10May Rep. Bizon’s plan offering fresh start to Youth ChalleNGe grads signed into law Young people with troubled pasts who graduate from the Michigan Youth ChalleNGe Academy have a new opportunity to gain a fresh start after a plan backed by state Rep. Dr. John Bizon was signed into law today.The Michigan Youth ChalleNGe Academy, located at Fort Custer in Battle Creek, is a 22-week residential program operated by the National Guard that offers youth ages 16 to 18 the opportunity to change their lives in a military-style structured and disciplined environment.Bizon, of Battle Creek, said the new law simplifies the process graduates of the program use to have their juvenile court convictions set aside.“The Youth ChalleNGe Academy takes troubled teens who are most likely on a path to prison and changes their lives,” Bizon said. “These kids work incredibly hard to prove themselves. They deserve a chance to clear their records so their past mistakes don’t keep them from leading successful lives.”Under Bizon’s plan, graduates will receive a certificate to present to the court as evidence that their improved circumstances and behavior could warrant having certain juvenile convictions cleared from their records.Individuals with felony convictions are not eligible, and judges will continue to have discretion in determining whether setting aside a conviction is in the best interest of the public.The legislation, House Bill 4768, is now Public Act 142 of 2018.###last_img read more

Pay TV operator BSkyB has named JD Buckley as mana

first_imgPay TV operator BSkyB has named JD Buckley as managing director of its operations in the Republic of Ireland.Buckley, who will report to Sky’s sales and marketing group managing director Stephen van Rooyen, is joining the group after operating his own business consultancy. He was previously CEO of the Cayman Islands and subsequently the North Caribbean region for mobile operator Digicel.Sky plans to open a new call centre in the Irish capital Dublin this summer, with 800 new jobs.last_img

Canal will lose €400 million this year if nothin

first_imgCanal+ will lose €400 million this year if “nothing is done” to arrest its decline, according to Vivendi chief financial officer Hervé Philippe.Speaking on an analyst call on Vivendi’s quarterly results, Philippe said that the €59 million loss recorded by the pay TV group in the first quarter was “quite positive” by comparison with what could be in store down the line, unless action is taken.Philippe said that Vivendi was working on a number of initiatives to cut costs over the coming year that would be unveiled in the coming weeks.Vivendi CEO Arnaud de Puyfontaine, speaking on the same call, hinted that one change at Canal+ might be to reduce the amount of the broadcaster’s content that is shown free-to-air element. Answering an analyst question on whether Canal+ should become an exclusively paid for channel, Du Puyfontaine said that “this is something that we have in mind” and that Vivendi was working on a number of different options. He said that Canal+ Group already offers a strong free-to-air proposition via its D8 and D17 channels and that there is a “need to reinvent the new Canal+”.Referring to Vivendi’s agreement with Mediaset, De Puyfontaine reiterated that Vivendi has a goal of becoming a “solid player in southern Europe” through its agreement with Mediaset, including the acquisition of the Italian broadcaster’s pay TV arm, Mediaset Premium.He added that the company was keen to pursue new avenues of collaboration with Telefónica in Spain and Latin America as part of the same southern European strategic focus.Referring to Vivendi’s recent acquisition of an interest in French retailer Fnac, De Puyfontaine said that “the rules of the game are changing” regarding content distribution and that the investment was “strategic”, highlighting Fnac’s initiatives in digital distribution of music and video and plans for international expansion.last_img read more