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to the Rescue . . . Not 

What does your council member say about Bill’s plan to save Lincoln Place?

Wednesday, Feb 22 2006
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WE CHECKED IN WITH Bill Rosendahl’s fellow city council members to see what they had to say about the Lincoln Place debate, the lack of affordable housing in Los Angeles, and Bill himself.

ED REYES, DISTRICT 1

“Not until Bill came aboard did we have this activism. He’s really forced the rest of the council to push the envelope. I think recording the covenants is a good idea. It’s a critical step in requiring the developer to be accountable. The bottom line is there are other council members who don’t care about this issue. They have mostly homeowners in their district who don’t want poor people to bring down property value. I’d support a motion Bill brings forward that he feels would resolve this issue. We need to be more aggressive with the city attorney in general. We need a sense of urgency.”

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WENDY GREUEL, DISTRICT 2

“I’m concerned about the tenants, and I will look to Bill’s leadership.”

DENNIS ZINE, DISTRICT 3

“The city attorney gave us legal advice. The tenants don’t want to accept that. I listen to all the testimony. I understand the issue; I also understand the law and property owners’ rights. I know what Bill wants to do, but a landowner has certain rights. This isn’t the first time a developer has bought a place and tore it down?.?.?.?If a company wants to come into this city and develop property, they pay millions of dollars for it, we can’t stop them. . . . No, there isn’t any affordable housing in this city. I don’t have any in my district.”

TOM LABONGE, DISTRICT 4

“The councilman doesn’t feel he knows enough about the issue to weigh in.” (Jane Galbraith, director of communications)

JACK WEISS, DISTRICT 5

“The City Council’s actions have been guided by the city attorney. It appears the city attorney is correct in the applicable law, and the city did not have legal options on this matter.” (Lisa Harmon, deputy chief of staff)

TONY CARDENAS, DISTRICT 6

“I listened to what they had to say and listened to the legal constraints. I base my decisions on the facts and in accordance with my responsibilities. I value public comment, and I listen to what the public has to say.”

ALEX PADILLA, DISTRICT 7

“He’s prepared to support Bill in whatever solution he puts forward. Alex has even been approached by individual tenants. He and Bill have a good relationship and Alex has a lot of respect for him. Of course, he hopes solving this problem will set a precedent for the city in how we make housing affordable.” (Bill Mabie, communications and policy director)

BERNARD PARKS, DISTRICT 8

“Bernard doesn’t have an opinion for or against Lincoln Place. The only gospel Parks preaches is market rate. He doesn’t want his district to be a dumping ground for affordable housing. He’s pushing for home ownership.” (Eduardo Hewitt, special assistant)

JAN PERRY, DISTRICT 9

Perry “is supportive of the motion Bill brought to council today. She will look to the city attorney for his input but noted the motion looked promising.” (Eva Kandarpa, communications director)

HERB WESSON, DISTRICT 10

“The situation is not something he wants to comment on.” (Ed Johnson, assistant chief deputy)

GREIG SMITH, DISTRICT 12

“Smith wants tenants — and the public — to get more respect when they come before the easily distractible City Council. He’s introduced a motion to ensure such civility.” (Matt Meyerhoff, communication director)

ERIC GARCETTI, DISTRICT 13

“Bill is doing an amazing job. He’s been a moderating presence and constantly reminds us on the council that this issue is about people. I think maybe Bill feels more alone than he is. We had been waiting for him to bring us something, and now he’s going to bring forward a motion in the coming week, so we can do whatever we can to record the tract map. This will strengthen our hand when it comes to legal risk in negotiating a settlement. I think Bill will see a lot of support from his colleagues.”

JOSE HUIZAR, DISTRICT 14

“The tenants have been coming here constantly, and there should be more decorum. We should be listening to the public. I look to Bill’s leadership to find ways to help the tenants. The way I see it, the situation is not fair. I heard Bill hired a professional mediator to help him and the tenants. I would give Bill my full support; I’m on the same page he is.”

JANICE HAHN, DISTRICT 15

“I understand how the tenants feel that the council isn’t listening to them. It’s frustrating for me as well. I’m hoping our city attorney will come back with a way to save these people’s homes. We keep waiting for Bill to step forward. He’s very committed; we all are. We need some kind of legal strategy. I would absolutely support Bill. My heart breaks for those tenants. Nobody wants to see elderly and disabled people with no place to go. We have a housing crisis, and legislation needs to change. It’s tragic we can’t save them. Bill is holding out hope. There’s always hope.”

Reach the writer at limmediato@laweekly.com

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