Former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa tried to tackle reform at the nation's second-largest school district. He grappled with near-bankruptcy at City Hall. And he set out to build, as it was known, a "Subway to the Sea," a rail line that is well on its way west along Wilshire Boulevard.
Despite all that, he often was deemed a failure. Maybe he should have thought a little bit smaller, kept his eye on the prize.
Mayor Eric Garcetti knows what Angelenos really care about. And he's on the problem:
Garcetti this week launched phase two of the city's Operation Neighborhood Blitz. What that means, essentially, is that crews that just got done filling about 15,400 potholes at 500 locations in our nearly 500-square-mile city-state are about to start all over again.
Every day in L.A. since July, one Bureau of Street Services asphalt repair truck has been dedicated to fixing roads in one neighborhood, the mayor's office states:
Every neighborhood will be blitzed again during the next six months.
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Yes! Garcetti says:
Angelenos want their government to get back to basics and see City Hall work better to solve problems in their neighborhoods.
That's what we're talking about. Our schools need help. City Hall's deficit rocks on as if we're still in the Great Depression. And it doesn't look as if LAX will be getting a light-rail stop, like, ever.
But at least our mayor knows how to make voters purr. If national politics is about the economy, stupid, L.A. politics are about our streets, estúpido. The Angeleno is a fairly simple race of people.