By Veronica Mackey
On Tuesday, the Inglewood City Council heard and approved an ordinance amending the Inglewood Municipal Code to modify Permit Parking District No. 4, adding 83rd Street from Victoria Street to Crenshaw Drive to the District.
A second hearing was held to receive comments on the priorities for community development and housing needs to be included in the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Consolidated Plan and Annual Action Plan.
Council members also approved:
•Amendment of the Fiscal Year 2016-2017 annual budget to authorize funding in the amount of $208,512 to pay for the assessment levied by the Independent Cities Risk Management Authority
•An agreement with Gwynne Pugh Urban Studio to provide architectural and consulting mechanical engineering services in support of the modernization of the Locust Street Parking Structure
•A one-year agreement with Communication Support Group, Inc. to review franchise fees, PEG fees, digital phone and video user taxes paid by Spectrum (Formerly Time Warner), and AT&T
•Property appraisal valuation for the calculation of open space in-lieu fees
•A one-year lease agreement with Duncan Solutions, Inc. to lease space at 1 West Manchester Boulevard, Suite 602, on the 6th floor of Inglewood City Hall.
•Authorization of Mayor James Butts to sign and execute the Deed Restriction for Darby Park, related to Los Angeles Proposition A Funding for the completed Darby Park Art Action Anti-Graffiti Project.
•Offers of dedication for Parcel Map No. 73997 to consolidate 11 lots into 1 at 687 North Eucalyptus Street, in the City of Inglewood.
Five public hearings were set to schedule delinquent refuse and sewer accounts for direct property tax assessment, and to set and initiate proceedings for the annual levy and collection of assessments. The assessments will impact the Morningside Park Maintenance Assessment District No. 1974-2, In-Town Maintenance Assessment District No. 1975-1, Inglewood Street Lighting Assessment District No. 1980-1, and the Darby-Dixon Maintenance Assessment District No. 1987-1.
An initiative by Councilman George Dotson requesting City Sponsorship of the 2nd Annual Family Day/Taste of Inglewood Festival was passed. Family Day will be held on Sunday, July 30, 2017, from 1:00 p.m., to 6:00 p.m. at Edward Vincent Park.
During open comments, two protestors spoke about the still unresolved police shooting deaths of Kisha Michael and Marquintan Sandlin.
A man talked about the need for their children to have closure. He cited statistics from the National Institutes of Health about children who have trouble coping after the sudden death of a parent. “Knowledge helps provide a sense of security,” he read. “Feelings of helplessness increase with ignorance of the facts.” He told councilmembers the City needs to provide facts to the families of Michael and Sandlin.
A woman said Inglewood police are “out of control.” With more people moving into the city, she’s concerned there will be more officer-involved shootings.
Long time resident Ray Davis responded, “Someone said police are out of control. Go back about 20 years when we had serious issues. How dare you insult this city like that!”
Davis also commented that President Trump “kept his promise” by signing into effect whistleblower laws. “Veterans are finally going to get some relief and justice,” he said.
Another resident, Stuart Bailey commented on the recent police controversy and called for reform of the police department : “We need to give the citizens their voices back; we need to go back to evening meetings and go back to 3 minutes (public comment time),” Bailey said.
Aldene Sligh is “disappointed in tactics used when citizens don’t agree with the council, and how they’re treated.”
A woman complained that noise from a nearby music studio is keeping her up at night. She said even though it was deemed illegal, it has not been shut down. Mayor Butts had a staffer meet with the woman after the meeting.
Dotson defended the council from remarks by some that they are not doing anything for the public. “I go to 3-4 meetings a month at night when I should be home with my family. We take our jobs seriously,” he said.
“To have someone say someone is coming into our city to get killed—that’s very disappointing. Our police put their lives on the line,” Councilman Alex Padilla said. “And I say the same thing for our fire department. I support our chief, and the men and women in law enforcement and the fire department 100%.”
“We all support the police department, we are a diverse city,” Councilman Eloy Morales said. “No matter what anybody says, no matter how they view 30 minutes of our meeting, we are that great city of whom we are proud.”
“I spent 37 years in law enforcement and I ran 3 police departments. For someone to say that people who come to Inglewood are looking to be murdered by police, to take a snapsot and try to (make that be) emblematic of what’s going on. . . You don’t live here, you won’t define us,” the mayor said.
Butts highlighted the city’s success within the past 5 years—the paving of more streets, improved credit bond rating, attracting the NFL, Rams, Chargers and Clippers, and the lowest crime rate since recorded history, to name a few. “This is not the track record of a city that doesn’t care about its citizens,” he said.
The meeting was closed in honor of Alvin Johnson, Sr., a 42-year Inglewood resident, who recently passed away.