We must ensure the health and wellbeing of our residents by working tirelessly to maintain the safety of our water supply, our air quality, and the health of our soil. Because Culver City sits on the largest urban oil field in the nation, the city must take significant steps to protect our community from the health impacts of oil and gas production.
CLEAN ENERGY CHOICES
Culver City participated in a 2016 study by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors that demonstrated the feasibility of participating in a Community Choice Energy program, which enables the city to use the combined buying power of its energy consumers to offer residents the choice of securing their electrical power from alternative sources, instead of fossil-fuels.
A PLAN FOR THE FUTURE
Culver City is in dire need of a new City Plan, which helps make the most out of municipal budgets by informing infrastructure and services investments. We also need a comprehensive Sustainability Plan, however, so that we can balance demands for growth with the need to protect the environment and prepare for the consequences of climate change. Adopting a Sustainability Plan will also make the city eligible for “cap and trade” funds for programs that will increase our climate resiliency. Upgrading our city’s infrastructure, green building, and landscaping requirements, expanding renewable energy options, and using “gray water” systems are all integral parts of a long-term vision for a sustainable Culver City.
Any plan for an environmentally sustainable future needs to include policies that support the movement and safety of pedestrians, wheelchair users, bicyclists, bus riders, and train passengers, as well as motorists. One way to prioritize alternative transportation is to take advantage of Culver City’s rapidly expanding transit-oriented district near the Expo Station.
I PLEDGE to take #NoFossilFuelMoney as I run for Culver City Council. If you support this pledge learn more at: nofossilfuelmoney.org/
- Impose an excise tax on oil and gas extraction in order to hire a city employee or a contractor to monitor activity on the Inglewood Oil Field and assure that new regulations are abided by, as proposed by Council member Meghan Sahli-Wells.
- Require a $2.5 billion bond from the operator of the Inglewood Oil Field to pay for the remediation of any harms caused by pollution or accidents.
- Advance the idea that the Inglewood Oil Field is a place where offsets can be bought via the Cap and Trade Bill (AB 398, State of California).
- Expand our Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure by applying for new Cap and Trade funds.
- Take advantage of the opportunity to join the L.A. Community Choice Energy Authority, or another Community Choice Energy program.
- Work with the City Manager to allocate the necessary funds and personnel to begin the process of drafting a Sustainability Plan.
- Look at ways to strengthen infrastructure that connect forms of transit to encourage use of the Expo line, Expo bike path, and local buses.
- Provide stronger connections between transit hubs like the Expo Line station, the West LA Transit Center on Fairfax, and the Culver City Transit Center at Fox Hills Mall.
- As part of the West Side Council of Governments, Culver City should apply for Measure M funds through the Mile Strategic Plan (MSP) to ensure that the first and last mile to large transit hubs are safe, secure and attractive for non-automobile use.
- Emphasize access to public transportation as a matter of city policy.
ALL OF US
Culver City has great schools, parks, city services, and cultural institutions. We also have a good deal of community involvement. But there is more we can do to improve our community and deepen the connections that already exist. In order for Culver City to continue to be the safe and welcoming city we love, we must take action to guarantee that all of us – families that have been here for generations, newer families with young children, college students, seniors, and all the vibrant ethnic and religious communities here – have the opportunity to fully participate, celebrate and thrive as integral parts of our City culture and government. Our elected officials should be more representative of the wonderfully diverse community they serve. We must also make efforts to protect the undocumented population in our community as they face greater threats under our current administration.
BEYOND CITY HALL
We can increase civic engagement by finding new ways to involve more individuals and community groups throughout the city. Holding regular community forums in neighborhoods around our town would help our elected representatives be more responsive to the concerns of all residents. Quarterly meetings outside of City Hall in various parts of the city could be used to solicit public input. Community town halls would provide elected officials and city staff the opportunity to address items that are on city council meeting agendas, and could serve as forums for issues that are not found on official agendas.
- Explore the idea of adopting voting districts in Culver City so that members of our City Council would be elected to represent specific parts of the community directly. If there was sufficient interest, this would be offered as a ballot initiative to City residents.
- Schedule roving Town Halls where agendas are determined by particular neighborhoods. Make these official city meetings so all council members can attend without violating the Brown Act (open meeting requirements).
- In addition to the non-discriminatory policy of the Culver City police department which address race and ethnicity we should have policies that explicitly forbids discrimination in terms of immigration status.
Culver City is made up of both homeowners (54.1%) and renters (45.9%), and during the past five years, the number of renters has been on the rise. Some of these renters are students who attend colleges and universities in the area (West L.A. College, Antioch University, USC, UCLA, LMU, and Santa Monica College). Other renters are working adults, couples, families or seniors with deep roots in Culver City, like many homeowners. As we commit to developing new housing to address the crisis of affordability in a responsible way, we must protect our neighbors from rents that rise too rapidly. Our rental assistance program, for example, has been essential for some of the most vulnerable families in Culver City. It is also a comparatively small program. If we prioritize expanding the program in the city’s budget, we can prevent an even larger number of people from being displaced and having to move away from their families, friends and the community they love and contribute to.
TAKING CARE OF OUR OWN
Many of Culver City’s municipal and school employees cannot afford to live here. We need to keep the wages that we pay competitive by auditing our yearly budgets to assure that funds are being spent wisely, and provide incentives for employees, like our teachers, firefighters and police, so that more of them are able to call Culver City home.
A PLAN FOR THOSE WHO FACE FINANCIAL CHALLENGES
As the housing crisis that has gripped Los Angeles County for over a decade continues, Culver City must be actively planning to provide services for those without stable housing and also prevent individuals and families at the lower end of the income spectrum from becoming homeless. Measure H, passed last year in Los Angeles County, creates a new pool of much needed funding for homelessness services. Most homeless people in our county are concentrated in downtown L.A., Santa Monica, and Venice. However, in 2017, homelessness increased by 85% in Culver City. Municipalities, including our own, should bear some responsibility to address this crisis for the unhoused individuals in their communities.
- Adopt Inclusionary Zoning ordinances that require a significant percentage of new housing construction to be affordable for people with low to moderate incomes.
- Develop policies and business incentives to create more affordable housing.
- Expand the Rental Assistance Program.
- Place additional social workers at the Senior Center, Veterans Park and Culver City Police Department who have training in de-escalation strategies to help defuse challenging situations with the homeless or near-homeless. They are also able to connect people in the community to needed services, alleviating suffering and preventing harm.