One of my son’s favorite television shows growing up was Mythbusters. Each episode focused on popular beliefs, Internet rumors or other myths. The cast would examine each myth and then either confirm or debunk it.
Circling the News is now offering its own series “Fact or B.S.” and in each installment we see if the claim is true or false.
The fourth installment of the B.S. series: Bonin claimed at a City Council meeting he needed more information about school and daycare center locations before he could vote against homeless encampments at those sites.
The impetus for this motion, came from Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Alberto Carvalho, who urged the Council to do something.
“`I’ve seen elementary schools with conditions that none of us as parents would find acceptable for children. Individuals with mental illness, some of them absolutely unclothed, shouting profanities in the listening ear of children,” Carvalho told the Council.
It seems that needles, defecation, and sex in front of schools thwarts the joys of elementary education.
In July, the council voted 10-1 in favor of the amendment to outright ban encampments next to schools (previously, it had been approved by the Council’s Homelessness and Poverty Committee). But since that initial vote was not unanimous, Councilman Mike Bonin was the sole no, a second vote was taken on August 2.
Ordinarily, the second vote would mark final approval of the ordinance — however, due to a procedural issue involving the motion that was approved last week, the matter returned for one more vote, city officials said. The vote was taken August 9.
Once again chaos was the order of the day in Council Chambers. It started when Councilman Curren Price attempted to lead the Pledge of Allegiance, and audience members booed. One protestor climbed over the bench onto the council floor, a second protestor was arrested.
The meeting was recessed, and chambers cleared.
Once the Council reconvened, Bonin stated he could not vote for the motion because “we have not done comprehensive studies on how impactful this would be.
“We don’t have a list of the daycare centers –or of the independent or private schools,” Bonin said and noted that the only list of schools he has seen was that of city controller candidate Kenneth Mejia (who was reportedly in the audience with the protestors).
Paul Koretz spoke, “Just because Kenneth Mejia and his band of anarchists try to break up two different meetings, we’re not going to stand for it and we’re going to take the actions that we need to take.”
Meija later tweeted: “As Council Members admitted, this doesn’t solve homelessness. It moves homeless encampments literally a block over which is still in the pathway for people to get by. Sweeping people & their belongings and fining & arresting them for having no place to go worsens our crisis.”
Koretz and Meija are running against each other for City Controller.
Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell’s said he wanted to address “another cynical and misleading statement by Mr. Bonin.”
“Perpetuating this false narrative that this [ordinance] will disconnect people from services and that there is no knowledge of where the daycare centers are schools are. Well, if you knew your district –you would know exactly where all the daycare centers and all the schools are– private and public. We do.”
Now, is that fair to “poor” Mr. Bonin, who has had only a month to learn where schools are before a vote?
CTN might argue for Bonin, who has been the councilmember of CD 11 for nine years, that there are too many schools/daycare centers – and all he had was Mejia’s list.
The real problem for Mr. Bonin seems to be that the Westside Regional Alliance of Councils (WRAC), which includes Venice, Brentwood, Mar Vista, Pacific Palisades, Westchester and Playa del Rey passed a motion supporting a ban on encampments in front of schools.
Last fall, WRAC sent Bonin a list of all schools and daycare centers.
Did Bonin need more information before voting against homeless encampments at schools and day care centers because he didn’t know locations?