BRENTWOOD Science Magnet Thursday, October 18 5:15pm -5:45pm A Dual Immersion Informational Meeting

Interested in hearing about a potential Dual Immersion Program at Brentwood?
Please join us!
Thursday, October 18
5:15pm -5:45pm
In the Parent Center
Prior to STEM night, we will be having a Dual Immersion Informational meeting.

Thank you

Reginald Brunson
Principal
Brentwood Science Magnet
310-826-5631
rvb5770@lausd.net

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Halloween Safety Tips

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1. Children should trick-or-treat during daylight hours.
2. Children should never be allowed to go out alone on Halloween.
3. Children should never eat any treats until they have been examined.
4. All fruit should be cut and closely examined before eating.
5. Advise children that they should never enter strangers’ homes.
6. Never invite children into your home.
7. Children should never accept rides from strangers.
8. Children should never take shortcuts through backyards or alleys.
9. Set a specific time limit for your children to be out on Halloween night.
10. Give wrapped homemade treats only to children you know.
11. Instruct children not to stray from their group.
12. A responsible adult should escort children while trick-or-treating.
13. Adult escorts should carry flashlights.
14. Don’t leave your home unattended on Halloween night.
15. Keep pets inside your home, or other safe place on Halloween night.
16. Children should walk, not run, during their trick-or-treat activities.
17. Parents should know what route their children will be taking.
18. All costumes should be made of light-colored, fireproof material.
19. Children should wear proper fitting, comfortable costumes and shoes.
20. Props such as toy guns or swords should be made of pliable material.
21. Realistic replica firearms should never be used.
22. Masks should not be worn if they impair vision.
23. Wigs should be fireproof and should not restrict vision.
24. Children should always use sidewalks, not the street, for walking.
25. Children should look in all directions before crossing the street.
This information is provided by LAPDOnline. For more crime prevention information contact the LAPD Crime Prevention Section at 213-486-8130.
And although these tips were obtained from the LAPDOnline website, I would like to also suggest that prior to Halloween, you familiarize yourself with any possible registered sex offenders within the radius of your Trick or Treat targeted neighborhood by going to www.meganslaw.ca.gov

LAPD Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray: Holiday Crime Prevention Tips: Package Theft

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During the holiday season, the number of delivered package thefts skyrocket. Thieves literally follow the UPS and Fed Ex trucks throughout the neighborhood and scoop up the delivered packages right off front porches. It’s a very, VERY, common crime, especially this time of year, and it’s time to consider changing your online shopping practices to prevent becoming a victim.

Here are a few tips to consider:

Use Smart Lockers or Convenience Stores

Amazon now allows you to pick up your delivery in Amazon Locker with a unique code, which you can punch into the machine to retrieve your package in selected locations across the country.

When putting down shipping address during the checkout process, you can find out whether the Amazon locker is available in your region or not.

If you are a frequent online shopper, you can also consider The UPS Store, or check the availability of lockers in nearby convenience stores (i.e. 7-11) or buy your own digital locker.

Have Packages Delivered to Your Workplace or Trusted Neighbor

Having your package delivered to your office will reduce the risk of package theft or package loss significantly (given that your company allows that and there are coworkers available in the office to retrieve your package). Or perhaps ask a trusted neighbor that is retired or works from home to use their address as your package destination address.

Install a Smart Security Camera at Your Front Door

A ‘Smart’ security camera system may not only serve as a deterrent for criminals but will also alert you in real time as to what’s happening on your front porch. The motion detection triggers an alert or alarm sending notifications to your phone the second movement is detected. It also provides for you to save the footage if you do experience a theft. And if the thieves are ultimately arrested, the footage can help in the prosecution. It can also serve to substantiate a theft for refund and/or replacement.

Require Signature on Delivery

Consider asking for a signature-required delivery. If your package is delivered by UPS, consult your sender and require delivery confirmation signature. Signature-required delivery should be strictly followed by couriers. If your package was left unattended, or even worse, lost, because they didn’t follow the protocol, delivery companies may be liable and you may be entitled to a full refund or replacement if you didn’t get a proof of delivery when you demand delivery by signature.

Reroute or Reschedule Delivery

If you are not sure whether or not you are going to be home to receive your package when the delivery truck pulls up to your front door, you can track the shipment information either on a package tracking app or order the information in advance.

Both UPS and FedEx offer web apps to help reroute parcels to another address and reschedule your package delivery at your convenience for a fee. For example, FedEx’s Delivery Manager and UPS My Choice premium membership is available for a nominal fee per year.

Require Vacation Package Hold

If you are going away for the holidays, you can place a hold on your package to keep your parcel safe. Many delivery companies such as USPS and FedEx offer a free service to hold your package at their terminals or delivery centers for a certain amount of time.

Insure Your Upcoming Packages

Consider insuring your parcels in the first place to ensure you will receive a reimbursement if your delivery was unfortunately stolen or lost before you get your hands on it.

All the best,

Maria

Trash debacle update…if you have had problems with your trash pickup, you are not alone!

ReCycLA issues reported by the LA Times
2 stories reprinted here

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Valley Village resident David Hernandez, center, speaks on the steps of City Hall about a proposed ballot initiative to repeal the city’s RecycLA program. Opponents say the program has caused trash bills to skyrocket. (Los Angeles Times)

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Los Angeles City Councilmen Mitch O’Farrell, center, and Mike Bonin, right, said Tuesday they have been inundated with complaints about higher trash bills and missed refuse pickups under RecycLA, the city’s new recycling program. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

February 8
http://www.latimes.com/opinion/editorials/la-ed-trash-pickup-plan-b-20180208-story.html
Can L.A.’s garbage-hauling monopoly RecycLA be saved? Better start working on Plan B

Los Angeles City Council members got an earful this week from apartment owners and business operators who have experienced repeated missed trash pickups and astronomical bills since the city forced them into a garbage-hauling monopoly program called RecycLA.
During a six-hour hearing at City Hall on Tuesday, some building owners described overflowing bins and piles of uncollected garbage that attracted flies, roaches and rats. Others talked about their bills, which have doubled or even tripled since the new service began, and about the challenge of getting the hauling companies to respond to complaints. 
Another speaker, who works with affordable housing providers, warned that higher garbage bills are making it harder to build more units for homeless and low-income residents.
Then council members laid into the trash haulers, saying they were shocked, just shocked, by the high bills and rampant service problems.
“It’s really been something that I never would have envisioned going this badly in my wildest dreams,” Councilman Paul Koretz said Tuesday.
“I was given assurances. I can’t tell you how many times I had meetings in my office, requesting assurances that this would be successful,” Councilman Mitch O’Farrell said. “I feel I was sold a bill of goods.”
Well, that’s just rubbish. The garbage monopoly system, or the “exclusive franchise” system, was pushed and adopted by the City Council and Mayor Eric Garcetti against the urging of the business community, apartment owners and the city’s own budget analyst. City leaders were warned repeatedly that removing competition from the trash hauling business was a recipe for higher prices and worse service. And that’s what they got.
Before RecycLA, businesses and multi-family residential buildings hired their trash removal services on the open market, allowing them to negotiate a deal with the garbage company of their choice. Under the exclusive franchise system, the government selects one trash hauler for each of 11 zones in the city, and then sets the rates and regulates the service. The program set new rules for trash haulers, including more recycling, cleaner trucks and higher pay for workers.
The good news is that many more commercial customers are recycling. The bad news is many of those same customers are paying a lot more money for worse service. Haulers say the city vastly underestimated the number of customers when it awarded the franchises, and that they had to scramble to hire drivers and buy trucks to meet demand. City leaders blame haulers and plan to issue fines for missed pickups. Garcetti said “all legal options are on the table” to fix the problems.
Los Angeles created a flawed monopoly system. Council members and Garcetti need to own the problem they created. Then they need to solve it. If they can’t guarantee quality service and reasonable prices, they ought to start working on Plan B — which should be extricating the city and its customers from trash-hauling monopolies and instituting a non-exclusive franchise system.

February 6
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-los-angeles-trash-problems-20180205-story.html 
‘A hot mess’ — Council members trash the rollout of L.A.’s recycling program

By DAVID ZAHNISER
FEB 06, 2018 | 8:25 PM

Frustration with Los Angeles’ new recycling program boiled over at City Hall on Tuesday, with council members grilling trash company executives and calling for new oversight to address soaring bills and poor customer service.
Lawmakers spent more than six hours reviewing some of the problems that have accompanied RecycLA, the commercial trash program that has sparked months of complaints from landlords, condominium owners and the city’s business groups.
The feedback they received was frequently angry. One speaker accused the city’s private trash haulers of engaging in price gouging. A second described uncollected garbage that had backed up in an apartment trash chute, attracting rats and roaches. Several said their monthly trash bills had increased by double or more.
“You have really created a monster,” said Madelynn Kopple, whose family owns several residential buildings.
Council members sounded equally frustrated on Tuesday. Councilman Paul Koretz, one of the original proponents of RecycLA, said the program had become “an embarrassment.” Councilman Mike Bonin described the RecycLA rollout as “nothing short of a hot mess.” Councilwoman Nury Martinez, who heads the committee that conducted the hearing, told the audience she is “not interested in any more excuses.”
“I’m furious [over] the fact that every single day I’m inundated with calls,” she said.
Amid those exasperated statements, sanitation officials said they are seeing substantive progress, with the city’s private trash haulers reducing the number of missed collections in recent weeks. A similar message came from the haulers themselves.
“We’re taming the beast,” said Doug Corcoran, director of public-sector services for Waste Management, which is assigned to much of the San Fernando Valley.
The council voted to implement the program in 2016, giving seven companies the exclusive right to collect trash in 11 designated sections of the city.
Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who represents neighborhoods from Echo Park to Hollywood, said he had received assurances that RecycLA would improve the “customer experience” for landlords, business owners and condominium complexes.
“I feel I was sold a bill of goods,” he said before Tuesday’s meeting.
Representatives of the city’s trash haulers have attributed the pickup problems, in part, to the sheer scale of the RecycLA transition, which involved the movement of tens of thousands of customers to new refuse companies. Some said Tuesday that their companies wound up collecting a much greater volume of garbage than initially projected — which forced them to hire additional staff and purchase more trucks.
Those explanations provoked a blistering response from Councilman Paul Krekorian, who serves on the committee overseeing RecycLA. Krekorian said each company had years to prepare and an obligation to have enough vehicles and employees on hand for the launch.
“You grabbed the brass ring and became the winning bidders on exclusive franchises in the second biggest city in America,” he told the executives. “There are a lot of small haulers that were servicing your accounts who aren’t in business anymore. So I don’t want to hear ever again from anybody how hard this is, or how difficult it is to meet your customers’ requirements.”
RecycLA was devised as a way to meet the state’s recycling requirements, improve the wages and conditions of refuse workers and put new cleaner-burning trash trucks on the streets. The program was championed by Mayor Eric Garcetti and backed by an array of labor leaders, environmentalists and nonprofit groups.
Many of those organizations urged the council to stay the course, preserving the program while also holding trash companies accountable. “Any efforts to shift away from an exclusive [trash] franchise program will have consequences — environmental and ecological consequences,” said Adrian Martinez, an attorney with the group EarthJustice.
Council members made clear that for now, they want to increase oversight of the trash companies and find new ways to provide relief to customers.
Bonin, who represents coastal neighborhoods, said city officials should look at tapping some of the franchise fees from the program to deliver financial help to customers. Koretz, in turn, has raised the prospect of firing trash companies that continue to rack up a significant number of missed collections.
“We should look at giving one or two companies that have done the worst job another month or two,” he said earlier this week. “And if they don’t get to where we expect them to be, we terminate their contract.”
Koretz said he would be willing to go to court, if necessary, to get trash haulers to stop imposing some of the extra fees that the city views as improper. The increases to customers’ bills, he said, have been “substantially larger than we ever dreamed possible.”
Daniel Yukelson, executive director of the Apartment Assn. of Greater Los Angeles, put the blame for the program squarely on council members. City lawmakers, he said, failed to properly vet the program before they approved it.
“To say that they’re surprised by the increased costs — that’s egregious. It’s just wrong,” he said. “They should have known.”

From Councilman Mike Bonin’s office RE: RecycLA

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From the Councilman’s office:
Please feel free to have residents reach out directly to me about these issues, as we have an Athens Council liaison who I can ask to expedite matters.

Lupita Huerta
Constituent Advocate
Councilmember Mike Bonin
City of Los Angeles
310-575-8461 | www.11thdistrict.com

Acting to fix significant problems with a new waste hauling system in Los Angeles, Mike and his colleague Mitch O’Farrell introduced legislation in December aimed at improving the customer experience and better protecting consumers from excessive fees charged by waste haulers.
In July 2017, the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation launched an ambitious new program, recycLA, designed to dramatically increase recycling, move Los Angeles toward its zero waste goals, ensure fair pricing, improve service, and enhance working conditions. Since the initial rollout of recycLA , however, City Council offices have been inundated with calls and correspondence from small businesses, landlords, and homeowner associations. Concerned constituents have expressed a thread of complaints and confusion regarding sudden and sharply increased costs, confusing new fees and surcharges and inaccurate bills. Their concerns also include frequent and repeated lack of service, lack of notice and widespread poor customer service from the waste haulers.
The Bonin/O’Farrell legislation instructs the Bureau of Sanitation to immediately provide a report to the City Council with recommendations for possible reductions to extra service charges being levied on small businesses and apartment owners, and to allow apartment owners and small business owners to share collection bins to help reduce the cost of service. The legislation additionally demands a plan for further outreach to customers to inform them about the new waste hauling system and of the options available to reduce costs by increasing recycling, and asks for the City Attorney and Board of Public Works to prepare options that allow the city to assess penalties on waste haulers that fail to provide a reasonable level of service to customers.
The legislation was crafted after hearing from hundreds of residents, small business owners, and property owners. Councilmember Bonin said that some of the problems with missed pickups have been so extreme that despite frequent calls to trash haulers and the Bureau of Sanitation, some property owners in his district have received warnings and citations from the Los Angeles County Department of Health.
The Bonin/O’Farrell legislation will be referred to Energy, Climate Change, and Environmental Justice committee and the councilmembers are asking for their motion to receive a hearing quickly so the city can begin improving the recycLA program as soon as possible.

Councilmember Bonin: Concerning issues with the city’s “recycLA” program

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Dear Friends,

You deserve better than this.

A few weeks ago, I emailed you asking if you were having problems with the new trash service in Los Angeles, and hundreds of business and apartment owners like you responded with helpful feedback. Today, thanks to your help and the invaluable information you provided, I took action to address some of the most glaring and concerning issues with the city’s “recycLA” program.

As you know, earlier this year, the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation launched an ambitious new program, recycLA, designed to dramatically increase recycling, move Los Angeles toward its zero waste goals, ensure fair pricing, improve service, and enhance working conditions. Since the initial rollout of recycLA program, however, I have heard from small business owners, landlords, and homeowner association leaders who have serious concerns regarding sudden and sharply increased costs, confusing new fees and surcharges and inaccurate bills. Your concerns also include frequent and repeated lack of service, lack of notice and widespread poor customer service from the waste haulers.

The issues causing these concerns are unacceptable, and today, my colleague Mitch O’Farrell and I proposed legislation to address the failings of the recycLA roll-out. Our legislation instructs the Bureau of Sanitation to immediately provide a report to the City Council with recommendations to reduce or eliminate extra service charges being levied on small businesses and apartment owners, and to allow apartment owners to share collection bins to help reduce the cost of service. Our legislation additionally demands a plan for further outreach to customers to inform them about the new waste hauling system and of the options available to reduce costs by increasing recycling, and asks for the City Attorney and Board of Public Works to prepare options that allow the city to assess penalties on waste haulers that fail to provide a reasonable level of service to customers. A full copy of the legislation can be found at www.11thdistrict.com/recycla_improvements_legislation_introduced.

The goals of the recycLA program – reaching zero waste in Los Angeles and protecting the workers we rely on for this essential service – are imperative, but the poor rollout and implementation of this program is simply unacceptable. The City needs to take immediate steps to fix it or we’ll never achieve the worthy goals of the program.

I am sincerely grateful for those of you who shared your experiences and frustrations with me and my team, so we could craft legislation that directly addresses the issues you have seen since the program began.

Thank you very much for your participation and for all that you do to make neighborhoods on the Westside great places to live, work and enjoy. It is an honor to serve you and I greatly appreciate your partnership.

Regards,

MIKE BONIN
Councilmember, 11th District

A Note from LAPD Senior Lead Officer Maria Gray on Burglaries and solicitors

Officer Gray urges that while things are improving, stay vigilant!

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Local News: Brentwood Whole Foods’ planned parking lot changes result in loss of lease for newsstand

LA Times’ Steve Lopez reports that “More than 900 customers have signed a petition to save the newsstand that’s been ordered to vacate the Whole Foods parking lot on San Vicente Boulevard in the heart of the hamlet.”

LA Times Contact Reporter Steve Lopez Reports Brentwood Lease Battle

Supporters of Marck Sarfati, the owner of the newsstand, who has operated on this site for 28 years, have started a PETITION TO STOP WHOLE FOODS