Culver City Observer -

Ending Homelessness Act Is In Progress

 


Why am I not surprised that the Massachusetts Senate wants to increase the tax on flavored cigars and flavored smoking tobacco? What’s next?

If you are planning a surprise party for the leader of the Culver City Chamber of Commerce, Steve Rose, you will probably find him in Las Vegas. That’s right – May 17-19 will be the Grow Your Company Conference with speakers including Blake Mycoskie from Toms, Jillian Michaels from Empowered Media, Tony Hsieh from Zappos, Alexis Ohanian from Reddit and Chinedu Echeruo from Gigameet.com and HopStop.com. Visit growco.inc.com, and use promo code Grow your Company.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters recently toured the Los Angeles Skid Row, and she noticed a change in the population of the city’s most destitute areas. Increasingly, people are mentally ill. “They have real serious problems and are barely making it,” she said, as she announced legislation to spend more than $13 billion over five years on homeless initiatives across the nation. The bill is called Ending Homelessness Act of 2016. Her bill comes as Los Angeles City Hall weighs a sales tax, billboard tax or other fee to fund services for the homeless.

Did you read the article by the Associated Press and did it turn your stomach? The pain in Cousin Neil’s belly was so bad, he almost called the paramedics. Exonerations were granted in record numbers in 2015. According to the National Registry of Exonerations in its report of January 2016, 149 people falsely convicted of crimes were released. The registry is a project of the University of Michigan Law School and has documented more than 1,730 such cases in the United States, with an average of three per week. One hundred and forty-nine people were released from prison for crimes they did not commit; 54 were exonerated of murder and the average number of years an innocent person stayed behind bars was 14 ½.

Please get the lie detector equipment ready because we need to check out his story on how three handguns and a FBI agent’s badge were stolen from a locked and alarmed vehicle in the San Francisco Bay area. Before I faint, please tell me, what FBI agent who likes his job and wants to keep it would leave weapons, a badge and credentials in the car? Do you think he was up to no good? Stay tuned.

The United States Navy wants to reduce its force level by 6,300 to 322,000 by October 2017. The Department has requested $165,000,000,000 for fiscal year 2017, which begins in less than five months.

The Air Force Times did an analysis of six years of promotions and found minority officers and enlisted airmen took much longer to climb up the career ladder. The Times’ conclusion: “It is refreshing that the Air Force admits the problem, but the solution will only come from sustained top to bottom emphasis on recruiting minority airmen and getting them in the pipeline for robust career advancement.”

A state assemblywoman in New Jersey proposed a law that would fine or even jail citizens who text while walking. Experts report pedestrian deaths have been rising in recent years. Eleven percent of all fatalities in 2005 involved pedestrians, but that number rose to 15 percent in 2014. A bill pending in Hawaii would fine someone $250 if he or she crossed the street while using an electronics device.

Is anybody going to Costco within the next 10 minutes, because I need my usual three-gallon size of Jack Daniels and 600 caplets of Aleve extra strength? Cousin Neil just read the Beverly Hills Mid-year Budget Status Report that showed weakness in that city’s Transient Occupancy Tax. It was estimated to deliver $39.140 million, but took in $38 million. Property tax revenue increased by 9.1 percent or by $2.4 million as home values continue to rise. Sales tax revenue should increase by $2 million. The best news of all is every city will in the last quarter 2016/2017 receive from Sacramento all the sales tax money they are entitled to get. It’s the one percent we “give to California” to help pay their debt. For Beverly Hills that’s another two million dollars. Only a rich fool would vote for another tax increase.

Have you seen some of the Culver City properties advertised for sale? On Oregon Avenue a three bedroom that needs updating and TLC for a mere $949,000 or a two bedroom, one bathroom and a detached guest house on Westwood Avenue for a ridiculous $1,085,000. A four bedroom with 2.5 bathrooms and 2,253 square feet is listed for a super low price of $1,385,000. It’s on Ballona Avenue, so bring your check book.

California State University faculty salaries, adjusted for inflation in 2012 dollars:

Full professors $92,432

Associate professors $74,812

Lecturers $54,865

For those who missed an article, all my commentaries can be found at http://www.culvercityobserver.com by placing Rubenstein in the website’s search box.

 

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