Supervisor Horvath Questions City Ordinance 41.18


L.A. County supervisor Lindsey Horvath held a hearing about a L.A. City Ordinance 41.18

It appears that 3rd District L.A. County Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, who represents Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Santa Monica, Bel Air and Venice, has her panties in a wad.

It revolves around an analysis of L.A. City Ordinance 41.18 by Paul Rubenstein, Deputy Chief External Relations Officer for the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA).

Recently, Rubenstein performed an Abbot/Costello Act with CTN through emails Basically, Rubenstein wasn’t sure who was counted during the LAHSA Point-in-Time (PIT) Count and was concerned about counting the homeless on the Westchester beaches.

In addition to helping with the PIT count, the multi-faceted Rubenstein was also working on an analysis of 41.18, an L.A. City ordinance.

That ordinance, passed in 2021, does not allow people to sit, lie, sleep, store or place personal property in a posted sensitive-use area. That means people shooting up drugs or giving blow jobs, are not allowed to do it at a public park, or near a public library, day-care center, preschool or near schools. Of course it can still be done on public streets, just not near those areas.

Horvath, decided that the ordinance had to be addressed because it did not provide housing, and put it on the March 22 hearing.

It was pointed out by several callers, self-described homeless or homeless advocates that 41.18 did not offer housing, and was bad, racist and discriminatory.

Repeatedly, public comment callers pointed out to Horvath that 41.18 was not intended to offer housing, but rather to make sure preschool kids didn’t have to see people shooting up in the streets or hear those in a mental crisis shout profanities or have to step over poop.

As a parent, it is hard to explain why you have to pick up dog poop, but people don’t have to pick up their own poop. “Maybe the bags aren’t big enough?”

Numerous callers asked why the County was analyzing a City ordinance. The Supervisors are not allowed to answer public questions at these hearings, so that remains unclear.

Lest this editor be accused of being biased, let me point out that LAHSA, under the County Board of Supervisors, has done a wonderful job with the homeless.

The agency was implemented in 1993 and in 2011, there were 39,135 homeless. In 2022 there were 69,144 people considered homeless. In a mere eleven years, the population had nearly doubled to 75,518.

The sheer number of those who are drug addicted and mentally ill will undoubtedly impress visitors for the World Cup and amaze those foreign visitors who come for the 2028 Olympics.

Between 2015 and 2022, LAHSA’s budget went from $63 million to $547.8 million. The proposed budget for 2023-44 is $609.7 million.

LAHSA employees should get a bonus. How many businesses can claim they’ve doubled the clientele and gone from a $63 million budget to $609.7 million (taxpayer dollars) in little more than a decade?

But wait, isn’t LAHSA supposed to be helping people off the streets?

With Supervisors like Horvath, don’t count on it. There is a feeling from advocates, that people should be allowed to live in tents wherever they want.

Maybe some homeless could move to Horvath’s block, because she is compassionate, and understands their needs. Maybe other L.A. County Supervisors can welcome homeless encampments to their streets. Why should Venice be one of the sole receptacles of such human diversity?

At the hearing, Horvath asked in-depth questions such as, “Where does 41.18 funding come from?”

City funding was the answer and then was told that LAHSA’s was supposed to provide outreach.

Maybe some of the $609.7 million budgeted for LAHSA this year could go to the homeless?

In an LAist story (“LA Council President Criticizes Anti-Camping Analysis, As Agency Stands by Its Findings”) LA Council President Criticizes Anti-Camping Analysis, As Agency Stands By Its Findings | LAist, L.A. City Council President Paul Krekorian objected to claims that 41.18 criminalizes homelessness, and said it’s “not an alternative to housing programs,” like Mayor Karen Bass’ Inside Safe initiative.

“It simply prohibits encampments in specified limited areas,” he said, “that are especially dangerous to the unhoused themselves, or that unreasonably impede the public’s use of the public right of way or are adjacent to sensitive areas such as schools and childcare centers.”

“The information LAHSA provided…was clearly faulty and incomplete at best, and perhaps even deliberately misleading,” Krekorian said.

We would all like to read the analysis by Rubenstein. At the end of numerous public comments, Horvath asked where Rubenstein’s report would be posted, but was told that it was only an analysis and not available to the public.

Let this editor offer an analysis, since Rubenstein’s is not available: 41.18 is about camping locations. This ordinance doesn’t say anything about required housing.

Rubenstein sent a text message to LAist, “LAHSA offered impartial analysis based on the available data. Our goal is always to provide honest assessments that will allow elected officials to make informed policy decisions.”

More than one caller on March 22, asked that 41.18 be extended to removing broken and disabled RVs from parks and other sensitive-use areas.

Lindsey? Do you have room on your street? There are some RVs blocking kids’ access to parks and pools – in Westchester, where they don’t have beaches.

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5 Responses to Supervisor Horvath Questions City Ordinance 41.18

  1. Jane Abrams says:

    Sue-you nailed it!!! Wish you could be a supervisor! Then maybe something positive could be accomplished instead of the current bumbling officials who are wasting our tax payer millions!

  2. 'Joy' says:

    You continue displaying your outstanding abilities as a factual, concise, courageous reporter. Our representatives seem to have a sudden case of laryngitis when it comes to answering questions about how and why they have unsuccessfully fulfilled their job descriptions. We are lucky you are here. Is there anything we can do to help you get the job done?

  3. JUDITH a SWERLING says:

    CTN is the only real news source for local news. I’m so glad you are there. Your sarcasm is greatly appreciated by me. Maybe you could go more deeply into why the county supervisors and especially our own supervisor has so failed in her duty to see that her constituents parks and schools are safe from homeless criminal behaviors. What on earth are the supervisors doing with all those millions. It obviously is not being spent on getting the homeless off of the streets.
    By the way, I would love to subscribe but don’t know how to do so.

  4. Michael says:

    Those visiting for the Olympics and World Cup won’t be surprised. It will b e an international crowd and those from India, Indonesia, El Salvador, Rwanda, etc. etc. will look at our situation as business as usual.

  5. Kathleen Jensen says:

    I’m one of many Democrats who voted for State Senator Bob Hertzberg, not Horvath. Could see this coming when Mike Bonin & Sheila Keuhl endorsed her.

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