Mayor Eric Garcetti will take the national stage on Wednesday to speak about Los Angeles’s recently adopted $15 minimum wage, immigration reform and California’s historic drought as the featured speaker in the National Press Club’s “Newsmakers” event set for this morning in Washington, D.C.
Garcetti, who flew to Washington, D.C., on Tuesday afternoon, will be in the nation’s capital until at least Thursday, when plans to make a push for a $1.3 billion Los Angeles River restoration project in front of a panel of senior U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials.
But first, Garcetti will speak to journalists at the press club’s “Newsmakers” event set for 10 a.m., on Wednesday, at the National Press Building.
The event follows a question and answer “news conference” format and should be broadcast on C-Span, though it may not be live, according to event organizer Bob Weiner.
Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is a past Newsmakers speaker, Weiner said.
Garcetti is headlined to talk about the recently adopted $15 minimum wage in Los Angeles and discuss his response to the historic drought in California, Weiner said.
Garcetti will also discuss the role of local governments in tackling “immigration reform while Congress remains deadlocked on the issue,” according to the press club’s website.
On Thursday, Garcetti will appear before a panel of senior U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials to urge them to advance a $1.3 billion plan to restore natural elements to an 11-mile stretch of the Los Angeles River.
Garcetti told City News Service he will make a “final pitch” to the Civil Works Review Board, which is considering a draft of the final environmental impact report for the $1.3 billion plan that is aimed at restoring the natural ecosystem to a portion of the Los Angeles River that flows between Griffith Park and downtown Los Angeles.
Much of the 51-mile-long Los Angeles River was covered in concrete during the early part of the 20th century to prevent flooding and to serve as a drain during storms.
The proposed restoration project was spearheaded by local river activists and elected officials who wanted to bring back the river’s natural habitat, flora and fauna, as well as making it more inviting for public recreational use.
The Civil Works Review Board’s approval would be a key milestone for the project, according to Jay Field of the Army Corps of Engineers’ Los Angeles district.
If the board signs off on the environmental impact report, local officials hope to get final approval from the Army Corps’ chief of engineer by November, Field said.
That would allow the Army Corps to begin pitching the project to Congress for funding authorization as part of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, he said.
—City News Service
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