The Los Angeles City Council approved a motion Tuesday aimed at using funds from the $100 billion California Comeback Plan to clean public spaces near freeways.
The motion was introduced by Councilwoman Monica Rodriguez and directs the Chief Legislative Analyst and the City Administrative Officer to report on the state’s budget, including the $1.5 billion investment to clean public spaces, and identify the amounts of funding and planned expenditures that will benefit Los Angeles and clean public spaces near highways.
“We need to take this opportunity because frankly, as we know, the federal government is still stuck in conversation with their investments in infrastructure,” Rodriguez said. “… Absent that happening, we have this really tremendous opportunity with the state funds to making sure that we are geared up, that our staff is prepared to go after each opportunity and make maximum use of those dollars so we can compliment that investment here in the city of Los Angeles.”
Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson amended the motion, calling for assurances the funding is equitably distributed. His amendment directs the CLA to report on 311 calls regarding public spaces in and around freeway exits and prioritize those areas for funding.
“We have a strong ethic around equity, about spending the resources where they’re needed the most. I want to make sure the state does that with these funds to deal with freeway exits, and they don’t do a thing where they dedicate the same amount of money to each exit, they look at where there are problems,” Harris-Dawson said.
“You just take the 10 freeway … Councilman (Mark) Ridley-Thomas and I share the Western Avenue exit, it frankly looks like it’s in a different country than the Fourth Avenue exit in Santa Monica, and it’s the same freeway, and the same people are responsible for it.”