This is just a short post to formally announce some records from the Fashion District. Some have been available for a while, others I just uploaded tonight, but I haven’t posted about the existence of any of them yet. If you want some background noise while you’re reading, check out this video featuring Ariana Gomez and Kent Smith of the Fashion District blathering on about God knows what kind of BIDolatry.1
DISCLAIMER: I’m not a lawyer. But I’m friends with some lawyers. More than zero of them did not laugh out loud at the idea you’re about to read. That’s all I got.
Business improvement districts in California are made possible by the Property & Business Improvement District Law of 1994.1 It’s worth reading, or at least skimming through, because there’s gold in them thar hills! For instance, consider Section 36670(a)(1), which states:
36670.(a) Any district established or extended pursuant to the provisions of this part … may be disestablished by resolution by the city council in either of the following circumstances:
(1) If the city council finds there has been misappropriation of funds, malfeasance, or a violation of law in connection with the management of the district, it shall notice a hearing on disestablishment.
Do you see the potential in that statement? The fact that it’s a tool for laying waste the BIDs of Los Angeles like so many Philistines? It’s a little hard to understand statutes, but here’s a clue: when they say “shall” they mean “must,” not “can.” Now turn the page to find out why this little statute, if not more powerful than Doug Henning and his sparkly rainbow suspenders as pictured above, is possibly as effective a BID repellent but much, much more emotionally satisfying than mere poofsly-woofsly magical annihilation. Continue reading How to Destroy a Business Improvement District in California: A Theory→
Just this morning I received, via Dropbox, every one of Kent Smith’s emails for the month of July 2015. You can see all 1098 of them on the archive. Most of it’s dismal mass-blasted junk, of course, but even a lot of that is interesting. E.g. search in there for CCA (Central City Association) to see bunches of their bulletins, like this one, advertising special guests Jessica Borek and Matt Rodriguez. Unfortunately there’s probably no way to find out what was said there, but at least we know it happened.
Today I uploaded documents from the DCBID, the Fashion District, and some emails from Raquel Beard to the Mayor’s office. The DCBID’s Operations Committee agendas are here, and according to Suzanne Holley this is all of them for which there are electronic copies. They don’t meet very often, it seems. Next up we have 2015 minutes and agendas for the Fashion District BID Board of Directors. There’s some interesting stuff here, although I haven’t had time to read them carefully. For instance, on February 26, 2015, the Board heard about the Central City Association’s plot to hire Rodriguez Strategies to fight the legalization of street vending in LA. The new information here is that Carol Schatz evidently pegged the cost at $60,000 and Kent Smith of the FDBID asked and received from the Board approval to donate $10,000. I think that, given how the original initiative expanded, including the hiring of subordinate publicists, that original estimate must have ended up to be quite low. In March Kent asked for and received from the board $5,000 to oppose Carol Liu’s Right to Rest Act. I really do wonder if this kind of political activism is a legal use of BID money, since it’s supposed to be used to provide services in the district above and beyond what the City provides. How, I wonder, is taking positions on state laws consistent with this charge? A question for another day, I guess. And finally, after the break, we have some emails from Raquel Beard of the CCEA to Eric Garcetti’s office. Continue reading New Documents, Mostly Routine, although Assistant LAPD Chief Jorge Villegas Explicitly Acknowledges Limitations of Arrests as a Tool for Addressing Homelessness→
A collaborative denunciation of Business Improvement Districts in Los Angeles