Tag Archives: LAMC 42.00(b)

Defendant City of Los Angeles Files Motion To Dismiss Street Vending Lawsuit, Motion To Strike Putatively Irrelevant Material, Gratuitously Compares Street Vendors To Human Traffickers And Drug Dealers; Hearing Scheduled For November 21 At 1:30 P.M.

An image from a recent journey to the Fashion District, unrelated to anything discussed in this post or, for that matter, on this blog.
An image from a recent journey to the Fashion District, unrelated to anything discussed in this post or, for that matter, on this blog.
Recall that last week we learned that settlement talks in the Street Vendors lawsuit seemed to have fallen through, that the plaintiffs filed an amended complaint, and that the City of LA denies everything.1 Well, today a couple more items2 hit PACER, which are:

The motion to dismiss isn’t that different from the motion to dismiss that the City filed in May but then withdrew a few days later. It doesn’t seem plausible,3 and you can read it for yourself. The motion to strike is more interesting, and you can read about it after the break.
Continue reading Defendant City of Los Angeles Files Motion To Dismiss Street Vending Lawsuit, Motion To Strike Putatively Irrelevant Material, Gratuitously Compares Street Vendors To Human Traffickers And Drug Dealers; Hearing Scheduled For November 21 At 1:30 P.M.

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John Tronson in Van Nuys: Money doesn’t talk, it swears1

John Tronson at the Joint Security Committee meeting on April 9, 2015, giving a performative demonstration via mouth-closure that he’s not, at the moment the picture was taken, lying.
The city of Los Angeles has been holding public hearings to gather input on possible frameworks for legalizing street vending. Yesterday we began discussing the June 11 meeting in Van Nuys by considering Kerry Morrison’s statement. Today we move on to John Tronson. You can listen to his statement here or after the break, where a transcription is also available. Audio of the entire meeting is available here. We’re just going to look at John’s statement one piece at a time.

Good evening. My name is John Tronson. I’m a member of the Hollywood Entertainment District, which is a property-owner based business improvement district in Hollywood.

All these people start off by saying something true. It’s meant to lull your suspicions. Don’t let it.

Some people think that because they pay taxes with their own money, the taxes they pay are still their own money after they’re paid. If they start taking this idea too seriously they’re likely to wake up one morning to find a bunch of people wearing this badge while knocking down their door with a battering ram.

We spend three and a half million dollars a year of our own money to clean the streets of Hollywood, to trim the trees, to provide additional public safety and paint out graffiti.

The way a property-based BID works is this: If the majority of the property owners in a district agree, the city adds an extra assessment to their property tax, keeps some part of the money raised for administrative overhead, and distributes the rest back to the BID to spend on specific kinds of services in the district. There are two important points to remember. First, a BID can be established over the objection of individual property owners. Only a majority need approve. Second, once a BID is established, the assessment is no longer voluntary. It is compulsory. Non-payment is punishable by the full range of state action2 up to and including violent confiscation of property. In other words, this assessment, once paid, is a tax. After all, income tax might be considered voluntary in this same sense. The Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution was put in place by elected representatives, so in a way, the people to be taxed consented to the taxation. But now that it’s in place, income tax is no longer voluntary, just as BID assessments are no longer voluntary. This is consistent with the standard definition:

Al Capone, yet another guy who confused "taxes" with "his own money" and had to have the distinction explained to him in a fairly forceful manner.
Al Capone, yet another guy who confused “taxes” with “his own money” and had to have the distinction explained to him in a fairly forceful manner.

Tax: A compulsory contribution to the support of government, levied on persons, property, income, commodities, transactions, etc., now at fixed rates, mostly proportional to the amount on which the contribution is levied.3

Now, everyone who pays taxes has, at one point or another, thought of that money as still their own. But really, it’s not. Try telling a cop not to give you a ticket because you pay their salary with your “own money.” Try telling a professor at UCLA they have to give your kid an A+ because it’s your “own money” that supports them. It’s a losing argument. Taxes, once paid, belong to the public, not to the people who paid them. BID assessments are taxes. BID assessments are public money. Now, as to John’s statement about what they do with that public money, it’s true as far as it goes. That’s not all they spend the money on, but they do spend it on that. We won’t argue. Onward!
Continue reading John Tronson in Van Nuys: Money doesn’t talk, it swears1

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The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 3: the Good Guys

Previous installments of this series appear here: Part 1 and Part 2

Placeholder caption
1990 picture of Cynthia Anderson-Barker, badass civil rights lawyer and board member of the badass civil rights organization the National Lawyers Guild Los Angeles. Their motto proclaims them to be “Dedicated to the Belief That Human Rights Are More Sacred Than Property Interests”
We originally planned to write a full post making fun of Nicole Shahenian’s speech at the May 28, 2015 meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall on the subject of legalized street vending in Los Angeles. On listening to it again, though, we realized that it’s nothing more than the same old nonsense, probably ghost-written by Kerry Morrison, and that writing on it would be a waste of time, space, and electricity. So today we’re concluding our reportage on the May 28 meeting with a brief discussion of the good guys, the white hats, the rays of sunshine, the breaths of fresh air, the actual humans in the room, the supporters of legalized street vending in lovely Los Angeles. In particular we hear from an actual street vendor who supports his family and from badass civil rights lawyer Cynthia Anderson-Barker, who explains why it’s essential to repeal LAMC 42.00(b) because, not only is it not being enforced equitably, it is not actually possible to enforce it equitably.
Man arrested, shackled, and humiliated by BID Patrol for selling hot dogs on the streets of Hollywood.
Man arrested, shackled, and humiliated by BID Patrol for selling hot dogs on the streets of Hollywood.

First up we have a man, whose name we didn’t catch on the audio, who’s one of the street vendors that Kerry Morrison recently mocked in public for claiming that he practices street vending in order to support his family. Listen here or read a transcription after the break. She has complained vociferously in the past and will no doubt complain vociferously in the future about the tone and incivility of those who oppose her iron will, never taking into account that her minions, who are paid to go to these meetings to speak words that, even if she didn’t actually write them, are certainly consistent with every public statement she’s ever made on the issue, are directly attacking people like this speaker, who are trying in the face of massive harassment to feed their families.

She and her minions rank this man’s life and well-being below the putative, delusionally construed rights of their employers not only to own property in Hollywood, to make untold amounts of money in exchange for very little productive labor, and not only that, but to have an extraordinarily immoral amount of control over the social conditions of life in places and neighborhoods where they don’t even live. In the face of this, Kerry Morrison has the audacity to complain about the audience being “uncivil” to her minions? Quel chutzpah, n’est ce pas? Anyway, in his speech, this man makes it clear that he knows that they’re his enemy. And he’s not wrong. They are his enemy. They are our enemies.

Man arrested, shackled, and humiliated for selling ice cream on the streets of Hollywood
Man arrested, shackled, and humiliated by BID Patrol for selling ice cream on the streets of Hollywood

He says, plausibly directly in response to BID flacks Alyssa Van Breene and/or Devin Strecker:

By example, for myself, I make ninety dollars a day. And I support my family with that money. … Our life … is very different than yours. Our day is starting at 4 a.m., and we’ll finish at around 9 p.m. for just a few dollars, but it’s OK.

42.00(b)- LAMC- SALES OF GOODS W/OUT A LICENSE
Man arrested, shackled, and humiliated by BID Patrol for selling water on the streets of Hollywood

This is the kind of story Kerry Morrison dismisses as an example of speakers “being bused in” in order to all have “the same, the same, um, tune, like ‘I need to be able to sell on the street to support my family.'” We’re impressed in a theoretical way that she can live with herself thinking like that in the face of such testimony, although maybe we could live with ourselves too. Never having thought like that, how would we know? Does she think the guy’s lying? Making up stories to win the right to work 17 hours for 90 dollars? What is she thinking, if anything?
Continue reading The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 3: the Good Guys

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The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 2: Devin Strecker

Devin Strecker, Director of Communications and Social Media of the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance.
Devin Strecker, Director of Communications and Social Media of the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance.

If you’re keeping score at home, you’ll recall that earlier we wrote on the May 28, 2015, meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall about street vending, focusing on Hollywood Entertainment District BID board member Alyssa Van Breene’s comments. You will also recall HPOA Executive Directrix Kerry Morrison’s description of the proceedings:

there were a series of four hearings that the chief administrative office staff held on the… the sidewalk vending ordinance. … It’s just this kind of amorphous set of hearings, which were completely dysfunctional, disrespectful, and almost, um, resembled a circus.

Now listen, O citizens of Hollywood, to HPOA staffie Devin Strecker speaking before the same meeting:

Also sprach Devin Strecher:

There’s a transcription after the break if you care to read rather than to listen, and after the break’s where we’re going to separate the wheat from the chaff, which is a valid if cliched metaphor even if, as in this case, there’s no wheat atall.
Continue reading The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 2: Devin Strecker

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The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 1: Alyssa Van Breene

The Boyle Hotel at 101 N. Boyle Avenue, appearing here because we don't have a picture of the Boyle Heights City Hall, which is about half a mile west on First Street from the corner of First and Boyle.
The Boyle Hotel at 101 N. Boyle Avenue, appearing here because we don’t have a picture of the Boyle Heights City Hall, which is about half a mile west on First Street from the corner of First and Boyle, that being the location of this building.
We recently wrote about Kerry Morrison’s description of the series of public meetings sponsored by the Chief Legislative Analyst of the city of Los Angeles regarding the framework for legalizing street vending that’s being studied by the City Council. Well, interestingly enough, it turns out that the Council’s Economic Development committee has a website set up devoted to the issue and found thereupon are audio recordings of three of the four meetings held to-date.1 Astute readers will no doubt recall Kerry’s description of these meetings:
there were a series of four hearings that the chief administrative office staff held on the… the sidewalk vending ordinance. … It’s just this kind of amorphous set of hearings, which were completely dysfunctional, disrespectful, and almost, um, resembled a circus.
Wanna know what "frabjous" means?  You gotta ask Mr. Humpty Dumpty, or look it up in the Dictionary, for God's sake.
Wanna know what “frabjous” means? You gotta ask Mr. Humpty Dumpty, or look it up in the Dictionary, for God’s sake.

Well, frabjous day, friends! We have listened to the first of these, held at the Boyle Heights City Hall on May 28, 2015, and clipped out some representative bits for your audiosthetic pleasure and we’re sharing them with you here. First listen to HPOA Board Member Alyssa Van Breene (transcriptions after the break if, like us, you’d rather read than hear):

Listened up? Good! Let’s take this nonsense one lie at a time, shall we?
Continue reading The True Facts About the May 28, 2015, Community Sidewalk Vending Meeting at Boyle Heights City Hall Revealed Here (With Audio) for All to Hear and Judge and Opinionate Upon! Part 1: Alyssa Van Breene

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Kerry Morrison Accuses Street Vending Proponents Collectively of “Almost Resembl[ing] a Circus,” Being “Completely Dysfunctional [and] Disrespectful,” and “Being Bused in,” Elides True Nature of Putative Coalition

Kerry Morrison at the July 9, 2015 meeting of the Joint Security Committee being the opposite of dysfunctional, disrespectful, and circus-like.
Kerry Morrison at the July 9, 2015 meeting of the Joint Security Committee looking mighty fed up with something while at the same time, of course, being nondysfunctional, nondisrespectful, and in no way resembling a circus.
We’ve written before about the HPOA’s crazed-and-at-the-mouth-foaming opposition to Councilmembers Huizar’s and Price’s proposed ordinance legalizing street vending in the city of Los Angeles. We’ve written about the HPOA’s scheme to send its agents to public meetings in the ill-concealed guise of concerned citizens opposing the ordinance. Today we report on Kerry Morrison’s recent discussion of her experience orchestrating that whole fiasco. We’ll analyze it line by line, and you can watch the whole thing here and/or read a transcription after the break.

there were a series of four hearings that the chief administrative office staff held on the… the sidewalk vending ordinance. … It’s just this kind of amorphous set of hearings, which were completely dysfunctional, disrespectful, and almost, um, resembled a circus.

This painting by Georges Seurat almost resembles a circus also, but, and this is a subtle point but sound, Cela ne veut pas un cirque.
This painting by Georges Seurat almost resembles a circus also, but, and this is a subtle point but sound, cela ne veut pas un cirque.

Kerry’s been on before about this issue, people not treating her agents provocateurs to what she delusorily imagines to be the duly appropriate level of forelock-tugging, although she hits a new high note1 here. We mean, we weren’t at the hearings, but it’s hard to imagine that they were dysfunctional. It’s easier to imagine that perhaps Kerry’s mistaken the purpose. It’s hard to see how a public hearing can be disrespectful without being told towards what or whom it’s disrespectful. Does she mean the hearing was disrespectful towards her minions? What is it that they’ve done to earn anyone’s respect? Perhaps she means something else. And as for the hearings “almost…resembl[ing] a circus,” well, we imagine that’s nothing more than the reaction of someone who has done her illegal best to make sure that the public doesn’t feel welcome at the meetings she’s the boss of to finding out that she’s not the boss of every meeting in Los Angeles and, just possibly, maybe not so welcome at all of them her own self.
Continue reading Kerry Morrison Accuses Street Vending Proponents Collectively of “Almost Resembl[ing] a Circus,” Being “Completely Dysfunctional [and] Disrespectful,” and “Being Bused in,” Elides True Nature of Putative Coalition

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HPOA-Backed Anti-Street-Vending Agents Provocateurs Exposed, Mocked in Boyle Heights; Kerry Morrison Characteristically Misses Point, Whines About Incivility

Kerry Morrison, who uses gun-wielding thugs as tools to terrorize, kidnap, torment, and ridicule people but nevertheless expects herself and her henchmen to be treated with politesse on all occasions
Kerry Morrison, who uses gun-wielding thugs as tools to terrorize, kidnap, torment, and ridicule people but nevertheless expects herself and her henchmen to be treated with politesse on all occasions
The release of the HPOA’s quarterly newsletter is always an interesting time here at MK.org secret headquarters. On the one hand we’re always aghast at the latest stupidity, cupidity, mental rigidity, and white privilegidity on display. On the other hand, we always end up with a bunch of topics about which to write. The Summer 2015 issue is no exception.

As every regular reader of this blog knows by now, the HPOA is hysterically opposed to the legalization of street vending in Los Angeles. They’ve entered into conspiracies with the abhorrent Central City Association to subvert the democratic process through astroturfing and mendacity. And, according to Kerry Morrison, writing in the newsletter:

Devin Strecker, Alyssa Van Breene, Kerry Morrison, and a bunch of unindicted co-conspirators
Devin Strecker, Alyssa Van Breene, Kerry Morrison, and a bunch of unindicted co-conspirators


Before an ordinance is drafted, the CLA [Chief Legislative Analyst] staff presided over a series of public hearings to gain input from the community. Staff representing both BIDs, along with board members, attended each of these hearings and expressed the concerns of the business community. However, members of the business community were outnumbered easily 10:1 at these hearings.

Hollywood board member Alyssa Van Breene and staffer Devin Strecker attended the first meeting on May 28 in Boyle Heights. When they tried to share their concerns the audience booed. Though there were no boos or hissing at the second hearing on June 11 in Van Nuys, the audience was unruly and disrespectful to those testifying against the ordinance or speaking on behalf of small business.

Now, Kerry is well-known for her bluenosed Mrs. Grundyism, and we’ve grown somewhat accustomed to it, but this is really over the top, even for her. Let’s restate this in human language, shall we?
Continue reading HPOA-Backed Anti-Street-Vending Agents Provocateurs Exposed, Mocked in Boyle Heights; Kerry Morrison Characteristically Misses Point, Whines About Incivility

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Marie Rumsey and Thuggish Rodriguez Strategies Flack Jessica Borek Plot with the HPOA Board to Keep Arresting Bacon-Dog Sellers and Heladeros

Heladero chained to a bench in 2007 courtesy of the BID Patrol.   José Huizar's proposed ordinance would end this kind of sadism in Los Angeles, but the BIDs, with the connivance of CCA and Rodriguez Strategies won't give up so easily.  "It is our God-given right to handcuff the heladero!"
Heladero chained to a bench in 2007 courtesy of the BID Patrol. José Huizar’s proposed ordinance would end this kind of sadism in Los Angeles, but the BIDs, with the connivance of CCA and Rodriguez Strategies won’t give up so easily. “It is our God-given right to handcuff the heladero!”
Watch, listen, and learn1 as Marie Rumsey of the Central City Association and PR flackette Jessica Borek of thuggish PR RICO Rodriguez Strategies fill in the HPOA board on their strategic schemes to allow the BID Patrol to continue to arrest, shackle, and humiliate the ice-cream man. These people are so power-mad they want to ban bacon dogs, the national food of Los Angeles!(Transcription, as always, after the break).

Even after all this time, it’s hard to understand why these people are so dead-set against legalizing and regulating something that’s not only happening now, but is going to be happening in the future because it’s an integral part of the culture of Los Angeles. We have some ideas, but whatever their reasoning is, we don’t think it would be too much to ask that they tell the truth while they’re opposing it.

Marie Rumsey of the Central City Association at the March 19, 2015 meeting of the HPOA Board, lying through her teeth about pretty much everything.
Marie Rumsey of the Central City Association at the March 19, 2015 meeting of the HPOA Board, lying through her teeth about pretty much everything.

First of all, Marie Rumsey wants you to know that there are only nine health inspectors for all of LA county and there are 50,000 street vendors. The point is that it’s unlikely that food vendors would be inspected sufficiently. Let’s forget, just for a second, that currently none of the vendors are inspected, so inspecting ANY of them would improve public health. According to Bloomberg, there are 10,000 illegal food vendors in Los Angeles (granted, out of 50,000 vendors total, but health inspectors don’t worry about balloon-sellers, do they?) That’s lie number one, Marie. Next, we can’t find hard data for the number of health inspectors in LA County at the moment, but a moment’s googling told us that in 1989 there were 47 of them, and in 1997 there were 161. That the number has dropped to 9 in 2015 seems beyond implausible. That’s lie number two, Marie.

And this brings us to Rodriguez Strategies flackette Jessica Borek.
Continue reading Marie Rumsey and Thuggish Rodriguez Strategies Flack Jessica Borek Plot with the HPOA Board to Keep Arresting Bacon-Dog Sellers and Heladeros

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Don’t Incarcerate the Ice Cream Man

small.100_0659-2small.100_0601small.100_0478small.100_0486-3small.100_0525small.CASTRO-GARCIA, HEBER ACI 4-15-88 42.00 b LAMCsmall.DSC_0509small.DSC_0515ANTONIO, PEDRO 06-18-81ALEXANDER, CHARLES 3 We have written before about the BIDs’ hysterical, dishonest opposition to City Councilman José Huizar‘s proposal to legalize street vending. We’ve discussed the fact that many of the BID board members who oppose this law are themselves criminals, although not the kind who get prosecuted for their dirty deeds. We’ve written about how their froth-mouth rage at this relatively small move in the direction of sanity puts them in opposition to democracy itself. But we haven’t yet written about the very human cost of continuing to outlaw street vending in Los Angeles.
Continue reading Don’t Incarcerate the Ice Cream Man

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Kerry Morrison’s Cogent Argument Against Legal Street Vending Supports Outlawing Hollywood Real Estate Super-Villians CIM Group, Employer of HPOA President Monica Yamada

As we’ve previously discussed at great length, the palefaced economic elites of Los Angeles are all abuzz at the possibility that the City Council might legalize street vending of various kinds, an activity whose practitioners are, for the most part, not that palefaced. As part of their abuzzitude, the palefaces have produced reams of frantic pearl-clutching hysteria regarding the threats posed to truth, justice, the American way, etc. that would, they say, certainly ensue as a result of such legalization.

These white-privilege rage-rants, while mostly grounded in delusion and mental illness, occasionally contain valid and useful arguments. It can sometimes happen, as Albert Einstein said, that “a blind pig has found an acorn.”1 A letter by Kerry Morrison, Executive Directrix of the HPOA, to Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, is an example of this. Kerry argues that, amongst other reasons, street vending should not be legalized, at least not in Hollywood, because it “raises numerous questions that must be taken into consideration. For example, how will taxes and permits be enforced, especially given that this is a cash-only business?2

Typical cash-only business in Los Angeles, beloved of the human residents but hated by the HPOA because of the difficulty of enforcing "taxes and permits."  This one's owned by an extraordinarily wealthy former mayor of Los Angeles, who evidently didn't get the memo about how his business practices are RUINING EVERYTHING!!
Typical cash-only business in Los Angeles, beloved of the human residents but hated by the HPOA because of the difficulty of enforcing “taxes and permits.” This one’s owned by an extraordinarily wealthy former mayor of Los Angeles, who evidently didn’t get the memo about how his business practices are RUINING EVERYTHING!!

As an aside, this argument can also be used against iconic Los Angeles restaurants The Pantry, Nick’s Cafe, and Philippe’s. Will the HPOA soon be asking the City Council to shut down these landmark establishments?

In any case, Kerry also lists a bunch of other undesirable consequences that, in her view, are likely to ensue from the legalization of street vending. These are not all illegal, e.g. the horrifying prospect of the potential placing of trash into appropriate public receptacles, but they’re all, says Kerry, “not something we are requesting in Hollywood.” We will refer to these en masse as “Kerry Morrison’s cogent argument.”

In our previous post on this subject we mentioned that the city of Los Angeles has had some problems with the enforcement of “taxes and permits” regarding CIM Group, a real-estate investment conspiracy run by rich white people. There we discussed the whole John Noguez scandal and hinted at the difficulty of enforcing building permit terms and conditions against CIM. Subsequently we decided to do some further research on the subject, the fruits of which are the subject of today’s post.
Continue reading Kerry Morrison’s Cogent Argument Against Legal Street Vending Supports Outlawing Hollywood Real Estate Super-Villians CIM Group, Employer of HPOA President Monica Yamada

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