As we usher in a new year, I just want to thank you for your support in 2019. We got through an election as well as many important issues that impact our city and our neighborhoods.
What's been happening lately?
Dwelling Unit Defined: Council voted to define "dwelling unit" as a unit intended for long-term occupancy (at least one year) and to require that all initial leases for rental apartments be a minimum of one year in length. I voted for this amendment to our code because I believe short-term and extended-stay rentals have had a negative impact on the availability and affordability of rental housing in West Hollywood.
Cannabis: Council majority voted to allow 'doggy bags' for consumption lounges. I voted no on this change because I think there needs to be more study and discussion about what is considered a "reasonable" amount of THC for consumption onsite.
Santa Monica Boulevard Light Installation: the City of West Hollywood has installed permanent year-round decorative LED lanterns above Santa Monica Boulevard between N. Robertson Boulevard and Hancock Avenue. Inspired by Pride, the colorful globe lanterns provide a bright and festive atmosphere in the City’s LGBT 'Rainbow District'.
Photo credit Jon Viscott @WehoCity
The City celebrated Transgender Awareness Month, Disabilities Awareness Month, Halloween Carnaval, Colibri Gala Concert & Awards Ceremony, and the City of West Hollywood's 35th birthday! We also held our annual Don't Drink & Drive press conference with the West Hollywood Sheriff's Station and distributed coasters with transit info to Weho restaurants, bars and clubs.
Photo credit Jonathan Moore @WehoCity
Photo credit Oleg Volovik @WehoCity
Is there more?
There's more! This last quarter I worked on a number of initiatives that were adopted by Council. Here are some highlights:
Action Day on Food Insecurity: directs staff to invite local agencies that provide meals to come together to introduce themselves to the community, get residents signed up for services, and brainstorm how to reach vulnerable, hard-to-reach residents – especially older adults.
WeHo Gives Back Campaign: directs staff to allocate a portion of the parking meter revenues for the week of December 26, 2019 through December 31, 2019 to fund additional supplies for people experiencing homelessness in West Hollywood. Thank you Councilmember Heilman for co-sponsoring.
Certified Wildlife Habitat Program: directs staff to determine appropriate locations in the City to establish Certified Wildlife Habitats in public parks, and to promote the Certified Wildlife Habitat program to community members through the City’s website and other communication channels. Thank you Mayor D'Amico for co-sponsoring.
Tree Replacement in New Developments: directs the City’s Sustainable Planning staff and Urban Design & Architecture Studio staff to review and develop a strategy for this issue as our zoning code does not currently require tree replacement in any new commercial or residential developments.
- Seniors for Seniors Animal Rescue Program: directs staff to take steps to inform community members about “Seniors for Seniors” programs and partner with local rescue organizations to develop similar programs.
- Pet Memorial Concept Exploration: directs staff to evaluate community interest in, and feasibility of, establishing a memorial in honor of community members’ pets who have passed away. Thank you Councilmember Duran for co-sponsoring.
Goodbye 2019; hello 2020
If you're looking for some New Year's Eve fun, #BOOM! 2020: An Alcohol- and Drug-Free New Year's Eve Extravaganza is one of West Hollywood's premiere New Year's Eve destinations! Rivaling any flagship event in scope, this celebration draws 700-1,000 partygoers to ring in the New Year in a safe and fun environment! There'll be a DJ and dancing. Food and non-alcoholic drink will be available, including a non-alcoholic toast at midnight. #BOOM! is 100% FREE! Attendees must be at least 18 years old and capacity is limited. Location: West Hollywood Park Auditorium.
For City News and Top Stories, check out the City's website. For upcoming City meetings and events, check out the City Calendar. For the latest City Council meeting agenda, visit the WeHoTV page on the City's website. To sign up for email notifications, visit the City's Email Subscriptions page.
Happy new year! See you in 2020!