An oversized porta-potty, paid for by Councilman Mike Bonin, has been placed adjacent to the environmentally sensitive Ballona Wetlands for those living in a long line of illegally parked RVs on Jefferson Boulevard.
A woman who lives in one of the vehicles ran into the porta-potty with a vessel, filled it with the blue fluid, came outside and threw it at a woman who was attending a nearby press conference.
The woman shouted, “F*ck you, bitch, get a life,” before she ran back to her RV.
The blue fluid (biocides, dye fragrance and surfactants), feces bits and the toilet paper stuck to victim’s clothing and was all over the street.
About 30 minutes after police arrived, they took a statement and then arrested the urine-flinging woman.
Mayoral Candidate Joe Buscaino, Council District 11 candidate Tracy Park and Assembly candidate Nico Ruderman observed the outburst and Buscaino said to the Playa del Rey resident and victim, “If you need me as a witness, I’m available.”
Activist Lucy Han has challenged mayoral and L.A. City Council candidates to come view the environmental catastrophe that is occurring at one of the last remaining coastal wetlands in Los Angeles. Buscaino is the only mayoral candidate that has responded so far.
The Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve, located in Playa Vista, is a 600-acre protected area owned by the State of California and managed by California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). The street where the RVs are parked is under the jurisdiction of L.A. City.
Han and other activists have pleaded with city and state officials to restore the area.
Feces and garbage have been found in the wetlands; needles, batteries, broken down cars and other trash litter the side of the road. A fire, most likely started by the homeless, destroyed five acres of land in March 2021.
In early October, the City Council approved Councilman Mike Bonin’s resolution to spend $63,000 to remove six-tons of trash from the area along Jefferson that abuts the Ballona.
At the end of October, council members passed Bonin’s motion for a feasibility study to vacate the unimproved/unpaved portions of the public right-of-way and to perform a land survey and title search for properties in that area. “Management of the ecological resources in the Ballona Wetlands is currently impeded by misplaced jurisdictional lines,” he wrote.
While commissions study, the desecration of the land continues.
On April 1, more than 10 Playa del Rey residents met with Han, Busciano, Park, Ruderman and three elders from the Gabrieleno Native American tribe at the Ballona Wetlands. The Gabrielenos said that this land was a burial site of ancestors.
As the group of about 20 people took a short stroll along the walkway that is supposed to be available to the public, the garbage and stench was overpowering.
One Playa resident said about the RVs, “This is not for the betterment of anyone and it’s degrading to the community.”
Another Playa resident said that after their pleas had gone unheeded by Bonin’s office, they had turned to Busciano. “I looked at the City Council and saw his voting record,” the resident told CTN. “He understood the issue, he was responsive and someone in the office would take a call and call us back.”
The resident said they never received a response from Bonin’s office, and that “Joe gave us real hope.”
Other Playa residents said they had also reached out to Busciano’s CD 15 for help in their district.
Busciano told residents that there is an RV ordinance, but that it is on De Leon’s desk in the Homelessness and Poverty Committee. (Kevin de Leon, also a mayoral candidate, was appointed as chair of this committee in November to replace Councilmember Mark Ridley-Thomas, who was suspended from office after an indictment on federal corruption charges.)
“It’s a call to action,” Busciano said about ordinance (14-1057-S9, which would ban RVs in sensitive environmental zones and steer them into industrial zones. People would be allowed to enter the approved site once they received a parking permit. They would also receive homeless outreach services.
As the group started to disband, the woman threw porta-potty blue stuff and in addition to hitting the woman, those chemicals will also now be part of the sensitive wetlands.
(Editor’s note, I was standing close to the woman who was hit with the sewage water, and once I was home, everything, including my shoes, went in the washing machine.)