Friday, May 21, 2021

Please Sign the Petition Calling on Officials to Clean-up Venice Beach

Remember when Venice Beach was second to only Disneyland in popularity?  You can see it in this photo from several years ago.

Since the pandemic and the idiotic decision by Councilman Bonin to let hundreds of transients - most from out-of-state - camp on our hometown beach, the Boardwalk has become a violent, drug-infested refugee camp.  There has been a succession of assaults, beatings, shootings, and fires, on a daily basis.  Residents and tourists no longer feel safe to visit.

I and other community leaders in Venice are asking everyone in the world who loves Venice Beach to stand with our community. 

We need 30K signatures to get action to clean-up our beach and return it to residents and visitors!

We have garnered over 1,000 signatures in just a couple days!

Please share this petition with everyone you know, on Facebook, etc. – including international friends and family! 

You can find the petition here: htt

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Tiny Fire Truck Seen as "A Joke" by LA Fire Department Personnel

A friend of mine, a retired LA County Fire Captain who lives in Venice, set out to talk with LAFD officials recently about the increase in transient-related fires in Venice and Councilman Bonin’s stationing of a “tiny” fire truck on the Boardwalk…but only during daylight hours.

After talking to various LAFD personnel, his appraisal is that it is a public relations stunt of little practical value.

He found:

The truck was developed for use on Skid Row in DTLA, but then was just warehoused because it was not found to be effective in that setting.

Since the truck and crew come from DTLA each day, and there are certain pre- and post- departure and return protocols to be observed, the crew’s effective time on the Boardwalk is only about 10 AM to 3 PM.

The two emergency medical techs that crew the truck are paid time and a half.

The truck is not patched into the LAFD’s main dispatch system so they are not tasked with responding to other fires or emergencies in the area, such as a vehicle-on-pedestrian accident occurring off the Boardwalk.  So, the presence of the truck and crew does not increase fire and paramedic response anywhere else in Venice.

The stationing of the truck amounts to giving a population of 250 beach campers their own private fire and paramedic force for a few hours a day when there is little need at that hour, while there is no immediate coverage when it is needed; i.e., in the overnight hours when 99% of the fires occur – across Venice, not just on the Boardwalk.

He heard that LAFD personnel consider the whole exercise as “a joke.”

He also determined that the presence of all the campers on the Boardwalk has dramatically reduced LAFD response time to serious emergencies elsewhere in Venice and in surrounding CD11 communities, such as West LA, Mar Vista and Del Rey.  He told me that when #63 crews and equipment are out on calls to the Boardwalk, especially at night, emergencies elsewhere in Venice must be covered by crews from elsewhere in CD11, with much longer response times.  Then, when there are emergencies in those neighborhoods, engines and crews must deploy from even farther away. 

My conclusion is that Judge Carter’s injunction forcing the city and county to get all of the campers into some form of shelter by September should be supported and implemented to stop the dangerous situation we face as a community from fires and crime on a 24-hour basis here in Venice.   And not on public beaches, beach parking lots or in city parks.

Monday, May 3, 2021

All Hands on Deck to Save Venice!

Several community groups, including Venice Stakeholders, are engaged in an ongoing collaboration with Los Angeles Rec. and Parks, the Chief Park Ranger, Council District 11 representatives, LA County representatives, and LAPD Pacific Division to make the Venice Beach Recreation Area safe and welcoming for summer. 

We recently saw a small win with the liberation of the handball courts so the public can now enjoy them again. 

We need a HUGE show of community support for this effort – and that’s where you come in. Can you please read the attached letter, which will be published in the Venice Current, and if you agree with it, do the following:

  1. Get at least five neighbors to sign onto the letter
  2. Have your signatories write to Connie Brooks at <> authorizing the addition of their name to the letter by Wednesday, 5/5/21
  3. Watch the Venice Current for publication of the Open Letter with all signers


Venice Beach requires your urgent attention: Unhoused people on Venice Beach and Boardwalk need shelter and services while residents and visitors need access to a safe and welcoming beach park. 

Our historic and world famous Venice Beach Recreation Area typically gets over 10 million visitors each year. As L.A. enters the yellow tier and more people travel, we cannot endanger our visitors by allowing the current lawless and inhumane conditions at Venice Beach to continue. Encampments have ballooned from 50 tents reported by LAPD in an August 2020 LA Times article to over 200 tents counted by locals in April of 2021. 

With that surge we have experienced massive increases in: violent crimes, including homicides and brutal rapes; encampment-related fires, such as the destruction of an entire structure; and drug ODs, including a recent death in the newly renovated Rose Avenue bathroom adjacent to a children’s playground. 

NO ONE IS SAFE – whether unhoused or housed. Comparing 2020 and 2021 to date, Boardwalk area robberies are up 271%, aggravated assaults are up 105.6%, burglaries are up 148%, and violent crimes involving unhoused persons as suspect and/or victim are up more than 75%. 

Venice’s world famous beach and Boardwalk are crippled. Local children are scared to come to the beach because they’re frightened by what they’ve seen. Seniors who live on or near the Boardwalk are terrified of walking in their own neighborhoods. Art vendors can’t access the spaces where they sell their creations to make a living. Restaurant patrons face bodily threats. Beach-goers must thread their way between encampments to reach the sand. And both unhoused and housed residents are prey to the verified gang infiltration happening throughout our park. 

Enough is enough! 

Venice Beach and Boardwalk – including the alleys and historic walk streets used for beach access – must be brought into compliance with State Coastal Act Law, Section 30210 and LAMC, Section 63.44. That section bans camping, tents, and requires that visitors and their personal possessions leave the park at 12 PM. These laws were put in place to ensure fair, safe, and equitable beach and park access. We – the undersigned community members, organizations, and businesses – fully support our LA Park Rangers and LAPD Beach Detail in making sure these vital protections remain in force. It benefits our entire county to make sure that its most visited beach destination is lawful and welcoming. You – as responsible officials – MUST ACT NOW to make Venice Beach safe and accessible, as our beach and park laws dictate.