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It's time for something different.

Portrait of Samir Bitar at a veteran's event

A 4-point plan for CD14

01.

CREATIVE EMPOWERMENT BLUEPRINT

The arts do more than uplift our souls. They are a proven engine for economic revitalization, an effective therapy for treating mental illness and traumas, and provide unparalleled opportunities for at-risk youth. These plans would be immediate and effective:

  1. Fast track LU 34.6 zoning goals to support affordable housing options for artists and freelance creatives in the Arts District.

  2. Contract with Arts for LA to work with Americans for the Arts on actualizing the Putting Creative Workers to Work program in LA.

  3. Prioritize the disbursement of $24M in collected Arts Development Fee for the development of cultural/artistic facilities, services and amenities in CD14, like the revitalization of the Historic Broadway Theater District.

  4. Collaborate with the NIH to bring recent advancements using Art Therapy to promote mental health.

02.

RETAIN LOCAL BUSINESSES

Operating a business in LA today's climate is expensive. City council can do more to retain our neighborhood merchants. The following commitments to CD14 mom & pop businesses are only the beginning:

 

  1. Revise LA business tax code to reduce or eliminate over 17 business taxes to keep CD14 small businesses in operation.

  2. Create jobs by designating Jobs & Economic Development Incentive (JEDI) Zones throughout CD14.

  3. Launch a public awareness campaign that promotes all new business-related laws passed by city council, like the new alfresco dining ordinance.

  4. Democratize access to city contracts by convening regular "How to land a City Contract" workshops for CD14 entrepreneurs.

  5. Designate a staff position dedicated to local businesses, tracking needs and keeping business owners apprised of opportunities.

03.

REPAIR INFRASTRUCTURE

A key priority of my campaign for City Council is to enhance the infrastructure of CD14. This includes the creation of more parks and green spaces, which cleans our air and reduces stress. My goals are simple:

  1. Direct $16.4M from the Park Fee Ordinance fund to plan and design three additional CD14 parks.

  2. Use CD14's $4M discretionary fund for a community-led neighborhood beautification grant program.

  3. Initiate JEDI Zones throughout CD14 to fund façade improvements and increased street lighting.

  4. Create a real-time reporting tool on CD14 district website of sidewalk, street, and tree maintenance. problems, to help speed resolutions. Work w/ BoE on a plan to prioritize repair of hazardous sidewalks in CD14.

04.

INCREASE SHELTERS & TREATMENT

Despite investing nearly $17 billion over the past five years, the number of unhoused people has increased. It's clear that we need to expand our focus from merely building housing units to tackling the root causes of homelessness. My contributions to solving this crisis is straightforward:

  1. Boost shelter availability, differentiating needs for asylum seekers vs. US homeless residents.

  2. Back the Lanterman Act to help place those suffering in care facilities.

  3. Work with the Veterans Administration to adopt its model of integrating art therapy in the treatment of mental illness, trauma, and addiction.

  4. Replicate CD 5’s successful L.A.C.E.R. afterschool program for at-risk and homeless youth throughout CD14.

  5. Support the Mayor's From the Streets to Housing and Services program aimed at helping the unhoused navigate the bureaucracy of housing.

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