A hearing was held to receive public input on priority community development and housing needs for the Fiscal Year 2015-16 Annual Action Plan.
A staff member from Inglewood’s Housing, Section 8, and Community Development Block Grant division, announced Inglewood residents would receive surveys in the mail. Additionally, all 4 council districts will hold community meetings in May to receive public input. Completed surveys may be mailed, faxed or retuned at the meetings. Details are available on the City’s website (www.cityofinglewood.org).
A man was concerned that low-income Inglewood residents who cannot afford market rate homes—such as those planned for the new Hollywood Park Tomorrow project—will be priced out of Inglewood as property values rise.
“If there are homes being sold at market rates, we also have a legal obligation to make affordable homes available, but not at that particular site,” said Councilman Ralph Franklin. He also told the audience, “We are losing nearly $100,000 for the HOME Federal Fund, and we have less to work with, and so we have to do our due diligence about what we want to see happen. Sequestration has eliminated funds that would have helped with homeless issues.”
The council approved an agreement with the South Bay Center for Counseling, which will allow the City to receive $60,000 in grant funds for prevention and aftercare services programs. The programs are aimed at increasing the safety and well being of Inglewood children. A professional services agreement with DKS Associates was also approved. The company will provide design and engineering services through a sophisticated communication system that transfers data from street intersections to control traffic signals.
The City of Inglewood will purchase a property at 110 E. Spruce Avenue, #1, an affordable housing property, for $150,000 plus closing costs estimated not to exceed $5,000. Funding from the Housing Authority’s First Time Home Buyers investment will be used.
City Clerk Yvonne Horton announced that the City of Inglewood’s Municipal Runoff Election will be held Tuesday, June 16, 2015. Residents will vote for Inglewood School Board members.
City Manager Artie Fields notified the public that Redondo Beach Blvd. at Florence Ave. will be closed permanently starting May 1 to make way for the Crenshaw/LAX Metrorail. He also reminded prospective home buyers that a pre-sell inspection is required for all real estate transactions within the City of Inglewood.
“A lot of real estate transactions are going on. (Sellers) need to do a pre-sell inspection report,” Fields said. “It is for protection of the buyer so they are fully disclosed about what they are getting. We will be providing information to real estate agents. Details regarding that are on our website (www.cityofinglewood.org) now.”
A newcomer to council meetings wanted to know what the City is doing about street improvements. “Century Blvd is like a wagon train. Something needs to be done about it,” he said.
“Before you go on, I’m going to interrupt you. We’re taking bids in May and construction will start in August,” Mayor James Butts said.
The man had another question about qualifying for the contour of the Residential Sound Insulation program, which is coming to an end. His home was not included.
“We had a multi-hundred million dollar settlement,” Butts said. “If we would challenge the settlement, we would lose all of the money and have to reimburse them (FAA)…It’s not looking too good. You’re welcome to contact the FAA, but we don’t have any authority.”
Councilman George Dotson addressed a question about street and sidewalk construction in the First District. Sidewalks and curbs will be done this year, he said. The councilman also congratulated Mayor Butts on his State Of The City (SOTC) speech last week. “I’ve been to SOTCs before, but this one was a production. Jim Hill was there and Fred Roggin. Those people don’t just come out for anything.”
Councilman Alex Padilla invited residents to his District 2 Town Hall meeting next Thursday, May 7 at 6:30pm in Community Room A, Inglewood City Hall. Sidewalks, streets, public safety, and revitalization of downtown Market Street are among topics to be discussed. In response to complaints about dirty streets, Padilla said the City of Inglewood has hired more street sweepers.
Franklin thanked those who showed up for his District 4 Town Hall on April 25. Over 100 people were in attendance at Hollywood Park Casino.
“Twelve years ago, we used to go to the Proud Bird with about 150, and now we do it at the Forum with over 500 people,” said Councilman Eloy Morales about the SOTC. This shows you the quality of interest in Inglewood. People don’t spend money in a city unless they believe in that city, and we are becoming that city and that’s something to be proud of.”
Butts said almost 900 people attended the SOTC address, and reiterated a few of the points covered:
“Between 2012 and 2015 property values have gone up 51 %, that’s a fact. We have tripled the general fund from $11 million to north of $34 million. These are just facts.”
He also addressed critics who said city officials are not being transparent about important issues. “Our staff has really stepped to the plate; we went through some very dark days. This thing about lack of transparency, we respectfully disagree. And other cities disagree because they call us now to find out how we’re doing it.”
Butts’ SOTC was live streamed on April 23, and will be replayed on Time Warner Cable, Channel 35. Check the station for dates and times.