DEAR WEHO: Candidates’ song and dance won’t fix crumbling city

My name is Michael. I live in Mid City West Hollywood. I am not trying to make a name for myself nor do I have an agenda. I just call it like I see it and for better or worse I have my own opinion. I am not a fan yet of the proposed changing of Fountain Avenue to a two-lane road. I have grown more and more upset over the perceived dysfunction of local governments. I say perceived because I am not an expert. I am a layperson who lives here on planet Earth. I’m not trying to get over on anybody but I ask everyone to respect their boundaries and one another. That is the great social contract.

When I walked down the street, and there is no crosswalk painted (Crescent Heights and Norton), I wonder if I am the only one who has noticed this? I walk along Norton Avenue and risk my life as people blow stop signs there. Yet, never anything to act as a deterrent.

Some overgrown vegetation blocks part of the sidewalks. It is an unpermitted easement. It’s an encroachment and a hindrance to the free flow of pedestrians to an already existing sidewalk. Yet, no code enforcement. Parking  Yes, everything else, No.

Everything mentioned is a different department. Different set of accountability. Different procedures. But meanwhile there’s no central accountability to just make the basic stuff work. There has been the same cracks in the sidewalks and unsafe intersections for years and no one fixes it. Enough is enough.

Does it really take a genius to make this a better town? What is the holdup to real bonafide tangible change? See, I’m not trying to tackle societal issues. I’m not trying to cure homelessness. I’m not advocating anything drastic. What I am rooting for is a human level of consciousness and reasonableness. If you make a few hundred thousand dollars a year working for the city of West Hollywood, it has to be on somebody to say, ‘Hey we should fix this’.

Recently, a young man running for City Council came to my door to introduce himself. I appreciated the visit. However, I quizzed him on the subjects that he was running on fixing. He’s concerned about homelessness. I asked him if he’s ever helped somebody homeless become un homeless and his answer was no. I asked him if he ever tried. If he ever called the various organizations that make up the web of homeless services in LA County, just to see how the experience is. His answer was no. I asked him if he had any experience with Medi-Cal, the predominant insurer of the homeless population. His answer is no.
He mentioned rent control as a buzzword. I asked him how many rent control departments there were in West Hollywood? His answer was no.

You see, this man wants to win a city council seat. He spent a lot of time and money to make flyers of little substance and aren’t recyclable. He had to register with various government agencies.

What I found so troubling was that he was rolling his eyes. He didn’t want to learn the facts and was more interested in winning than working. I don’t know where these politicians come from. I’m sure he means well but I don’t think he knows how to deliver the help that people really need.

I see his campaign ads around and then I got the postcard to change Fountain Avenue, I got so incensed I had to do something. I have become the accidental adult in the room.

—Michael

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WehoJoe
WehoJoe
3 months ago

Isn’t there a crosswalk with a signal and flashing lights at Crescent Heights and Norton?

Adam Darvish
Adam Darvish
3 months ago
Reply to  WehoJoe

I believe there is a crosswalk on the north section of the intersection. Most crosswalks in residential areas in my neighborhood are faded and I have put in a request for a touch up. I don’t recall if the crosswalk at Crescent Heights and Norton is in need of a paint job. I imagine it is in a good shape since it is on Crescent Heights, which is a major artery. I had noticed last year the flashing light for that crosswalk was out of order and it was fixed in a timely manner after l reported it. I think… Read more »

Adam Darvish
Adam Darvish
3 months ago

Michael, It is so refreshing to see this post since I have been on a journey to fix similar issues on Larrabee and neighboring streets after I became a victim of a horrifying high speed accident two years ago that made me get involved at.City Council as an advocate for safety and quality of life to help others and become a candidate after I was given a second chance to live when an SUV crashed into my property at 100 mph while I was asleep in my bed at 2 am, Lack of adequate lighting, overgrown trees that limited the… Read more »

Matthew
Matthew
3 months ago

Liberal political beliefs are all nonsense fluff. Our city is being ruined and it’s pretty damn sad

Confused
Confused
3 months ago

Your overall sentiment definitely has merit and your objective is noble, but without knowing who you’re referring to here, just because someone hasn’t tried YOUR methods of combatting homelessness doesn’t mean they aren’t up to the task. Have you ever learned what it takes to fix broken sidewalks? Have you ever tried to run a code enforcement dept in a city government? I’m willing to bet the answer is No, but does that disqualify you from having genuine ideas about it? Nope. Also, you seem to be lamenting the existing issues in West Hollywood while also decrying the new candidates… Read more »

Christopher Roth
Christopher Roth
3 months ago

Dear Michael,
All of the crumbling infrastructure issues that you mention can be fixed by submitting them to WeHo’s Service Request Page on the city’s website.
I use it all the time to report streetlight outages, dead trees, dirty bus stops and uncollected trash.
https://www.weho.org/services/services/service-requests

Joey Nilson
Joey Nilson
3 months ago

Yeah, right. So many holes in sidewalks (just walk the Westside), major raised edges to trip people (see around the trees, metal grates in front of Abbey), stench of plugged and rotting street drains (by Revolver), paint peeled off in patches and faded on blue street light poles, broken color lights across Santa Monica Boulevard (currently by Trunks), glaring street lights (who’d thought that Weho would have ‘bad lighting’), graffitied utility boxes (by Pump), broken down and filthy park and street benches, dead grass leaving just dirt in front of Chase at Robertson have been repeatedly reported to the city… Read more »

Public Advocate
Public Advocate
3 months ago
Reply to  Joey Nilson

Perhaps Wehoville can publish a list of complaints {submitted by residents cc’d to Wehoville) as an effort of public advocacy.

Tired Of It All
Tired Of It All
3 months ago
Reply to  Joey Nilson

True all dat. I talked to who I was told was the “right person” at city hall about some sloppy illegal curb painting to accommodate a particular building & he said “I’ll check it out but probably nothing will be done about it.” That’s the 2md time I’ve had that kind of dismissive response from city hell on 2 different subjects. No more. I’m sure many other WeHo citizens have the same response from city hell: None.

Ham
Ham
3 months ago

It’s not that the city doesn’t know about the needed repairs……they can be found anywhere you look. They have no leadership and no plan.

Christopher Roth
Christopher Roth
3 months ago
Reply to  Ham

So you expect someone to walk every mile of let’s say sidewalk to ensure that there are no cracks? Or that no pipes in the ground smell? What city could run that way? There is already a plan, use the service request online to submit the issue. They will create a ticket number for you and you are contacted when the issue has been solved. Try it.

2WeHo2
2WeHo2
3 months ago

If they were told they were talking to the “right person” but that probably nothing would be done about it, then a “ticket number” would likely get them to the same “right person” & a ticket number would be as useless as the city employee who was “the right person”.It’s not rocket science. Jeeze!

Ham
Ham
3 months ago

Yeah I do. We pay their salary……so yeah that’s exactly what I expect. It’s a tiny city with a bloated payroll.

Public Advocate
Public Advocate
3 months ago

We’ll see how long this takes. Just reported a tree down on N.E. corner of Crescent Heigts Blvd. & Norton late today.

WeHoK
WeHoK
3 months ago

Michael please have the courage to say who this article is about. Rather than libeling all the candidates.

J R
J R
3 months ago

So well said. They don’t realize that Making easy things sound complicated doesn’t make the speaker smart. It’s just word salad bs.

Ham
Ham
3 months ago

Good one. We just want the basics……..but all the time/focus is on silly things that only affect a small number of people.

Taxes need to be slashed……as they are wasting hard earned tax dollars on homeless parks and parades.

Woody McBreairty
Woody McBreairty
3 months ago

I agree with Michael 100% & then some. West Hollywood deserves better than this & it makes one worry & wonder if there are any really qualified new candidates in the foreseeable future. I know I sound like a broken record because I’ve said & written this a gazillion times: It makes me wish there were no term limits so we could keep the existing members as long as we wanted, who have the education, life experience, the knowledge & expertise & common sense to run a city. without causing the embarrassment, turmoil & division & petty bickering we’ve been… Read more »

Snarkygal
Snarkygal
3 months ago

I agree with your sentiments. My votes are in for Meister, Martin and Heilman, though. Duran just has too much baggage for me.

Joshua88
Joshua88
3 months ago

On term limits, I agree.

On fixing whats broken, if you limit your complaints to this *blog*, nothing will get fixed.

Mr Roth posted a useful link.
Use it.

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
3 months ago

As inexperienced as Ben Savage is, we have seen the disasterous results of supposedly experienced people. Could a bored actor whose roles have dried up possibly be any worse?

Snarkygal
Snarkygal
3 months ago
Reply to  WehoQueen

yes

Nuts & Bolts
Nuts & Bolts
3 months ago

I see your point. The campaign is attracting folks that don’t understand basic functionality and/or problem solving. They want to be identified with what they believe to be a noble cause because it is the cause du jour. they would in this case not know how to get a crosswalk in place on Crescent Heights & Norton. You might have given him the task and asked him to report back.🙄

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