GREAT NEWS FROM MIKE BONIN:
Thank you for your email! The good news is that most of the stuff you were urging me oppose is not and never was under consideration. Please let me correct the false rumors:
I am not considering ANY plans to turn the Westminster Senior Center into a homeless shelter. (In fact, there is no such proposal.) There is no proposal to locate the shelter pick up and drop off site there, nor is there a proposal to turn the lot into a homeless service center.
However, some have suggested I relocate a storage facility for the homeless, currently at Venice Beach, to Westminster. As I told folks at tonight’s neighborhood council, I am saying no to that proposal.
Homelessness, public safety, and quality of life are important neighborhood issues that need to be addressed in a thoughtful and comprehensive way. My staff and I are actively engaged on them, and we welcome your thoughts and participation. Feel free to email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mike Bonin, Councilmember
Councilmember, 11th District
The First Baptist Church in Venice wants to provide homeless services, host the storage lockers for their belongings and programs to help them on their own property. It is the most sensible long-term solution to the many woes that plague Venice and the controversial issues that polarize our neighborhood over the issue.
Be aware that there is big money, BIG MONEY in Federal dollars for programs related to the homeless… and very little to no accountability for how those dollars are managed or spent once allocated. What makes it much easier to get those federal dollars fast? Relationships with the City Council to endorse and approve programs to serve the homeless – and thus enters the opportunity for politics, side deals and situations that have landed us where we are now. Once you know how to apply for federal money and programs, it is a lucrative faucet of money that organizations like to keep going. It related directly to how/why the president of the VNC is on the payroll of Steve Clare’s Venice Community Housing and uses her position to further endorse their agenda. It is wrong, it is politics, she no longer lives in Venice yet continues to try and intimidate and smear her influence in a matter that breaches the commitment she made with the VNC ( but then again maybe she wouldn’t have tried to be head of the VNC if it didn’t give her power to manipulate ).
If you remember the hundreds of thousands of dollars for the “Streets to Homes” program that absorbed tons of community time, was complicated, confusing with sketchy results that yielded help for less than one handful of people… you can see how people can extract a very healthy “operation”, paying themselves to manage a sector of the community that is inherently transient and hard to account for.
If you think it is sketchy that the Venice Neighborhood Council has a president that recuses herself from a vote, yet writes direct personal letters expressing her wishes and desires over an issue that the community met and commented on- you would be correct.
After the Rosendahl-era of well-intended programs that were manipulated and delivered distorted results after the money was allocated and spent… it is time to move these efforts to a new group in Venice and The First Baptist Church seems like a fantastically sensible solution… moving the operational location off public & City park lands and into a facility oriented around long term efforts, as opposed to other operations that seem focused on buying up prime real estate at a nice big federally funded discount.
Steve Clare has purchased several multi-million dollar properties within blocks from the beach, and has received huge and significant federal funds to purchase those properties. And, the rent for the units is paid by the city as Section 8 housing… so not only does he get prime real estate at a monster discount, all the bills are guaranteed paid by the City each month. And the real kicker is it only has to stay section 8 housing for a certain number of years…. then they own the property outright and can start kicking people out and charging regular rents. Pretty sweet deal to get beach adjacent property at a more than 50% off federally funded discount with all bills paid for 8 or so years to then just own it at full value… at least that is how it has been presented to me. Rosendahl was bamboozeled into signing off on all these deals and what does it leave us with? 15 Horizon Ave which is a Clare property is a known drug dealing facility and two of the tenants who died and had their bodies left unnoticed for weeks while the rehab staff was “on vacation” were both abusers and everyone is waiting for the coroners report to see if both were from the same batch of meth, which is what the tenants have alleged. The cops are called to the building regularly to deal with the residents and their antics.
How’s that working out for you neighbors?
Let’s give the opportunity to provide homeless services to a new group in Venice – The First Baptist Church. The poverty profiteers orchestrated by Steve Clare and commandeered by Linda Lucks have been too shifty, are too good at playing the game and there is no balance.
Get the homeless storage lockers which we need ONLY so the cops can clean up the homeless crap that is strewn all over our parks and public areas in a private location with a group that wants to host it and offer other services. The notion that it is “too far” for the homeless is utter bullshit. They have the time on their hands and get between the beach and the 99¢ store on Lincoln with no issues…. they can manage to get to the Baptist Church as easily as they can get anywhere else.
Lobby to designate the homeless services in Venice to the First Baptist Church that wants to do right by this cause and get it off our City Parks and Streets, or convert our existing senior center to another “free” homeless marching ground where Steve Clare/ Linda Lucks don’t have to compromise their property but still get the big federal/City $$$ to “manage” programs that so horribly impact the residents.