Posts Tagged ‘towing’


Stay in touch with the Spirit of Venice —


9th Circuit Court of Appeals Heard Desertrain vs. City of Los Angeles; Looks Like LA City Living in Vehicle Law is Unconstitutionally Vague

December 6, 2013


Pasadena CA, December 5, 2013— The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments today regarding Desertrain vs. the City of Los Angeles, a Venice Beach lawsuit.

The vagueness of Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC) 85.02, the city ordinance making it illegal to habitate in a vehicle, was the main topic for the oral arguments presented by Civil Rights Attorney Carol Sobel.

LAMC 85.02 was used during a concerted Venice homeless eradication effort. This effort included a special Los Angeles Police Task Force that arrested, towed, ticketed, and threatened homeless people accused of living in a vehicle.

The lawsuit was originally filed in 2010 alleging that the City of Los Angeles violated the Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments, and the Americans with Disabilities Act. The case was not successful in the lower federal court, but was appealed to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by Sobel.

The three judge panel especially questioned the enforcement criteria and lack of duration for LAMC 85.02. “The City Attorney had difficulty answering the questions posed by the judges” according to plaintiff, Steve Jacobs-Elstein.

Venice is a special coastal community historically known for the diversity of its population; a community known for acceptance and tolerance. It is home to one of the largest free clinics in the country and provides homeless services second only to the skid row area in Los Angeles.

As Venice property values continue to soar, comes an influx of newer residents who can afford million dollar buildings by the sea, and hardships increase for those who can no longer afford to be housed in the community.

Surely, with all this new wealth, better solutions can be created.


Justice Committee & Media Group

Stay in Touch with the Spirit of Venice ~

On Tuesday, April 12, 2011 the Venice Neighborhood Council voted in favor of the amended LAMC 85.11, as presented by Councilman Rosendahl, staff and a PATH representative. It was after 11:00 pm that the final vote was taken following a long evening of discussion and emotional community commentary.

The addition of Penmar golf course parking lot to the new ordinance upset residents in the Penmar area, who complained that they had not been consulted on the plan to place 8 PATH program participants (vehicle dwellers) in the Penmar golf course parking lot, as part of the overnight “safe-parking” (safe from police harassment!) program proposed by Rosendahl back in September 2010.

This vote may or may not have any bearing on how the final LAMC 85.11 reads, given the fact that the city council has the last word.

Stay in Touch with the Spirit of Venice –

April 7, 2011

UPDATE:  At the very last minute this meeting was rescheduled to Tuesday, April 12, 2011 at Westminster School, 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice.  at 7:00pm ~ PLEASE ATTEND.  Thnx, SOV


April 5, 2011

Another  special Venice Neighborhood Council (VNC) meeting will be held on Thursday, April 7, 2011 at 7:00pm at Oakwood Recreation Center, 767 California Avenue, Venice.

A previous Venice Neighborhood Council (VNC) meeting was held on March 22, 2011 to discuss LAMC 85.11 proposed by Councilman Bill Rosendahl as part of the “ROADMAP TO HOUSING” program (formerly “Vehicles to Homes”), touted by L.A. City as a solution for people living in their vehicles on the streets of Venice. (See video above.)

This program will be run by PATH (People Assisting The Homeless) and requires that vehicle-dwellers who sign on to the program park “safely” in lots adjacent Rosendahl’s council offices in West L.A. and Westchester, respectively.

While, originally, Rosendahl promised “safe parking” in Venice he has since caved in to pressure from the Venice Stakeholders Assoc., headed up by Mark Ryavec – the same Mark Ryavec who tried, unsuccessfully, to bring permit parking to the streets of Venice.

Venice community members, including vehicle-dwellers voiced their opinion and asked questions of City and PATH representatives at the meeting.

March 19, 2011

Editorial Note:  Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, CD11 Moves to Amend “Roadmap to Housing”

Instead of allowing vehicle-dwellers to park safely on the streets of Venice, as originally promised, Bill Rosendahl, once again, caves to pressure from the special interest group, Venice Stakeholders, who call the shots (in the dark) on who can park where, in Venice.

Plans to allow vehicle-dwellers to park safely in Venice parking lots and on Venice streets have been scrapped in favor of using two parking lots adjacent Councilman Rosendahl’s council offices, one in W. L. A. and one in Westchester!  Thus effectively denying poor people who live in their vehicles the opportunity to live in the community of Venice that they call “home”.

This mean-spirited gesture is hardly an incentive for people to sign on to the so-called “Roadmap to Housing” – which is fast becoming reminiscent of the failed “Roadmap to Peace” in the Middle East!


Dear Friends,

As many of you know, my staff and I have been wrestling with the dilemma of people living in their vehicles

Cops close in on RV at night in Venice - Thanksgiving 2010

We have been striving for a balanced approach – one that helps those who need help, and also moves vehicles with people living in them from residential streets.

Last year, the City began enforcing parking restrictions on oversized vehicles on streets where residents and property owners requested such restrictions.At the same, we have been crafting a program called Roadmap to Housing (formerly known as Vehicles to Homes), which provide services, safe parking, and housing placement for people living in their vehicles.

Roadmap to Housing’s main goal is to find permanent housing for people living in their vehicles.The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) has already committed 25 housing vouchers to the program, and the Veterans Administration (VA) has committed to enough vouchers for eligible veterans already canvassed in Council District 11.

Because of aggressive enforcement of parking restrictions, People Assisting the Homeless (PATH) may need some legal public parking spaces for program participants to stay while PATH processes vouchers and makes housing arrangements,PATH would manage the spaces and require participants to follow a strict code of conduct and receive social services.

Earlier this month, the City Attorney released a draft ordinance (LAMC 85.11) that would allow PATH to legally operate such a program in designated public parking spaces.While the intent and particulars of that draft ordinance were distorted as part of a public misinformation campaign, many of the public comments generated raised legitimate concerns. As a result, at next week’s meeting of the Transportation Committee, I intend to ask the City Attorney to amend the proposed ordinance:

–The first draft of the ordinance would have allowed program participants to park on designated street segments.

I will ask City Attorney to delete that provision.

–The first draft of the ordinance would have permitted PATH to operate the program in any publicly-owned parking lot with a proper buffer from residences.

I will ask the City Attorney to restrict PATH to two lots:the municipally-owned lots at my field offices in Westchester and West LA.

–The first draft of the ordinance calls for a 50-feet buffer between any PATH-supervised parking space and a residence.

That buffer will remain in place for the Westchester and West LA lots.

–The first draft of the ordinance would have allowed up to 5 vehicles per PATH-supervised lot.

Since my other amendments will reduce overall parking inventory, we are considering what we should raise the number to for the two participating lots.

PATH will use the parking lot spaces, if needed, but will concentrate its program on street case management and helping people access permanent housing. PATH may not need to use all of the spaces in the lots, and may not need to use the lots at all.

As long as vouchers are available, PATH officials are confident they can place into housing those people living in vehicles who need and want a home. Like any important matter of public policy, this ordinance is a work in progress, and there are many more opportunities to be heard.

Before this matter goes to the full City Council next month, there are three public meetings:

Venice Neighborhood Council March 22, 2011 – 6:30 p.m. Westminster Elementary School Auditorium 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

Transportation Committee (City Hall) March 23rd, 2011 – 2 p.m. 200 N Spring Street, #1050 Los Angeles, CA 90012

Transportation Committee (City Hall) April 13th, 2011 – 2 p.m. 200 N Spring Street, #1050 Los Angeles, CA 90012

We’re almost there, folks! I hope we continue to work together to make this a model the rest of the City will be proud of.


Councilmember, 11th District City Hall

(213) 473-7011 West LA

(310) 575-8461 Westchester

(310) 568-8772

March 3, 2011

Venice Beach, USA –For All!

Right now –that loving, and world-renowned Venice Beach, USA –that long-time home of a Spirit of Love that has long-welcomed and fostered an inclusive, diverse, creative community and boardwalk of beats, beatniks, hobos, indigenous, squares, earth-lovers, tourists, hippys, travelers, rainbows, poets, writers, sculptors, filmakers, refugees, homeboys, homegirls, straights, gays, trannies and all:

is now under attack!

Venice Love invites you therefore —to especially join with us in this moment: in creating an end to the current attacks on the free speech and loving creative values of all our Venice community, boardwalk –and mother Earth: And always including and respecting (from all the world) the RV-dwellers, the travelers, the poor, the youth, the homies, the diverse, and the homeless who are among all of us: And who are, in their journeys, also always keeping Venice Venice.



Venice Beach Love

Febuary 14, 2011

In the face of stepped up LAPD attacks on the homeless  and seizures of people’s cars, vans and RV’s  in recent weeks, Venice RV/homeless community members assembled on the corner of Rose Ave. and Third St. in Venice, Monday evening, February 14, at 8:30 pm,

Los Angeles’s Mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, it is rumored –will be making a visit to Venice on Tuesday. The homeless are seeking the Mayor’s help this week in stopping homeless hate.

With signs and banners, “Venice Love,” a coalition of the vehicle-dwellers/homeless community, and their supporters, are launching what they see as an urgent appeal to Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa that he personally visit, and meet with them, and help end Venice’s now  completely out-of-control vehicle seizures and anti-homeless actions.  Recent police attacks which prevent people with vehicles from sleeping in them (illegal!) when all of L.A.’s shelters are full are forcing many of Venice’s RV-dwellers to sleep on the sidewalks (legal!) –outside their vehicles –often with their pets, to avoid violating L.A. ordinances.

“Where is there any  ‘Venice love’ in this?” asks the group, “Venice Love,” who’s members have been seeking for months to bring some humanity to L.A.’s recent treatment of R.V. dwellers in Venice Beach: in the face of the area’s months-now broken promises, local talk radio attacks and overblown accusations against the poor here –after a series of over-hyped RV waste dumping incidents that were siezed on by a small number in the community that have long-been seeking to transform Venice Beach from a diverse community into  a “rich-only-welcome” enclave. “We need the Mayor’s help in this,” says the group.

The urgent public appeal to the Mayor, the night before his expected visit, comes on top of the scrapping of Councilman Bill Rosendahl’s until-now two-year-long promise to amend a city ordinance against vehicle dwellers (a surprise Rosendahl announcement against the vehiculary-housed that has brought a Venice community uproar in recent weeks); sparking the arrest of one homeless protester at a Los Angeles City Hall meeting in January, when it was revealed by the councilman.

The coalition says –recent LAPD actions, stepped-up against the homeless in Venice in recent weeks -have resulted in scores of homeless people heartlessly being arrested; their pets  impounded.  Over 40 homeless people’s RV’s, cars and vans have been seized in the last 4 months alone: some more than once.  LAPD’s actions are further suspected to have contributed to the recent still-unexplained death of one long-time Venice resident, James Hunter, who had hidden himself inside his tightly closed van to avoid police detection: and who may yet be found to have died from overheating and stress-related causes stemming from fear of the police sweeps.

In their latest attacks, in addition to new city signs banning RV’s on more Venice streets between the hours of 2 am and 6:00 am, LAPD has begun newly increased rounds of arrests and towing, despite a pending Federal lawsuit, and increased verbal threats to RV-owners.  Marking tires: now often as soon as they spot an RV on any street in Venice.

States Venice Love, which is organizing the Monday night meeting: “Rosendahl promised us two years ago that there would be a legal place in Venice for RV-dwellers to go to when he began a process to amend L.A.’s vehicle occupancy ordinance –now he’s up and scrapped that effort –and claims that he’s got another ‘new’ ordinance he’ll supposedly back. When? Two years from now?”

“We now believe it is clear to all –that this process is nothing but a pack of falsehoods and evasions by Rosendahl to divert attention from homeless sweeps in Venice, and, with delay after delay, is acting solely on behalf of the homeless hate groups  –and their efforts to take away Venice as a low-cost beach for the poor to even visit!  Added to this –an ongoing hate-campaign waged weekly by the powerful L.A. am radio station KFI, which is the polar opposite of love, amplified on the internet with hate-speech, threats and new vandalism against the RV-housed and homeless in Venice.”

States community activist David Busch, a member of Venice Love: ”This extreme climate of homeless hate and attacks here in Venice, along with these unbelievable ongoing arrests, have forced over 200 RV-housed poor people already to flee in terror –and in sum, is just a hateful campaign that Rosendahl clearly now simply refuses to address honestly with anything but delay and obfuscation. We need the Mayor, in the name of compassion, to hear us now.”

Adds Busch,  “Sadly it is becoming increasingly clear that this is not about ‘solutions’ from Rosendahl’s office, but rather is all simply part of a bigger comprehensive plan to take out the poor artists and free-speech advocates currently on the boardwalk –along with the homeless –and despite their having won several recent lawsuits against the commercialization and cheap wares on the boardwalk, it is about plans by Rosendahl that are threatening to displace the area’s renowned free-speech expressionists and unique creativity.”

“Not only has Rosendahl lied about his promise to Venice to put a vehicle-parking area here for the currently vehicluarly housed –but he’s not taken a single step to provide for the dedicated RV-dwelling and homeless artist community.   By mobilizing the entire community between now and this summer, and appealing to other government officials, we intend to stop all this. We are not going to allow Rosendahl, and his developer cronies, hiding behind hate and broken promises, with plans to give areas of Venice to high-density developers –to take the love of diversity and concern for all, and acceptance of all, out of the heart Venice — to replace it with a beach soon closed to all but the rich,” states community activist David Busch.

Many of Venice’s RV-dwellers are not transient homeless people, but are among the artists and performers who have made and keep Venice Beach one of Los Angeles’ largest tourist attractions.

“I have always considered Venice Beach to be my home until now” states one RV-dweller, and Venice Love press conference speaker, the renowned impressionist painter Diane Butler.

Butler‘s work as a Boardwalk painter has been noted by a prominent New York Times art critic, as well as other art critics from around the world.  Butler founded “Circle of Color”, and with her husband, artist/musician Ibrahim, continued the bi-annual “Solstice Art Happening,” at the legendary Venice Sponto Gallery, for 20 years.  Butler grew up in the area –and has lived as an artist in Venice for the last 40 years.

“Councilman Bill Rosendahl keeps telling people here that he’s ‘working’ on solutions for the homeless –and people like us; who, like just about everybody else in Los Angeles,  are unable to afford to pay Venice Beach’s skyrocketing rents.”  Continues the artist, Butler: “With this latest broken promise from Rosendahl, we are scared beyond belief that we are going to lose our RV’s while nobody stops these police arrests: even in the name of us artists and performers; who are critical to what has made the Venice Boardwalk such a special and affordable place for people from all over the U.S. and the world to visit.”

The artist has taken, in recent weeks, to sleeping on the Venice sidewalks with her dogs at night –which is permitted only from 9 pm to 6 am in the mornings –just in order to keep police from seizing her RV.

Contact: David Busch, (310) 845-6034, organizer
Contact: Diane Butler, (310)  571-5813, organizer


The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 6,900 times in 2010. That’s about 17 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 16 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 38 posts. There were 34 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 8mb. That’s about 3 pictures per month.

The busiest day of the year was August 26th with 476 views. The most popular post that day was Illegal sewage prompts removal of RVs from Venice streets.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Illegal sewage prompts removal of RVs from Venice streets August 2010
1 comment


OAKWOOD January 2010


NOPD June 2008


RVs September 2010


HOMELESS April 2010

PHONE: (310) 845-6034



Los Angeles Mayor, Antonio Villariagosa   (213) 978-0721
Venice Area Councilman, Bill Rosendhal   (213) 473-7011
LAPD Police Chief, Charles Beck              (213) 485-3202


These days, Los Angeles, USA , is seeing the worst attacks on homeless people in the city since the Skid Row/Bratton “Broken Windows” attacks in 2003. Scores of low-income people in the Venice Beach area recently have had their last affprdable homes, their R.V.s, seized –making them homeless.,0,2846867.story

Hundreds more homeless people have been arrested here in recent months.

Hundreds more are fleeing in fear.

Meanwhile, “shelters” in Los Angeles are jammed, often-filthy, inhumane, and have long-been more threatening than L.A’s jails. Nobody wants to go to them. “Affordable housing,” in Los Angeles, is now simply non-existent: as absurd government policies continue to merely prop real-estate prices sky-high for the banks –and to facilitate their on-going plans of home robbing foreclosure waves –since the economic crash.

—  L.A.’s jobs have vanished –unless you want to spend your days rummaging through dumpsters for bottles and cans.

—  Or drive a battered old truck around –looking all day for cast-off cardboard.

Yet, instead of it’s sold-out politicians, L.A. can always find a scapegoat in the homeless:

L.A’s Venice Beach Boardwalk is still L.A.’s number one tourist draw. And it is known world-wide for its poor and creative artists.

“Phase One..” of LA City Councilman Bill Rosendahl’s program is, so far, just to kick us all out; regardless of our status here as a historic and peaceful part of the community –and there has yet to be a single place identified for the area’s 3,000 homeless and RV dwellers to go; even as arrests and towings under Rosendahl have skyrocketed since this hate-campaign he’s exploiting against L.A.’s Venice Beach homeless began.

These politicians –are purposefully building their oceanside enclaves for California’s exclusive rich: and walling them off to outside visitors, even as the rest of California crumbles in economic ruin.

Hippies, Beatniks, Beats and poor people living in community alongside everybody are what made Venice Beach –this special area –famous.

Now they are kicking us out –even as it is leading to more homeless deaths.

If you’d like to do something, just please make one CALL and simply say:

” Three homeless deaths in 2 months is enough, Mayor Villariagosa; These hundreds of people are not criminals –and tell Bill Rosendahl to quit saying they are. Mayor, you have the power to give the homeless and those in R.V.s in Venice a Safe Zone for the Holidays. Do it.”

Bill could’ve said something about safe zones –but not even that seems to be on his mind these days. Some of us will march again next Saturday –and hopefully with a bunch more new folks now.

We want to establish a homeless-run community in Venice to stop these attacks –But before we poor can mobilize to get affordable housing –But we need a “Safe Zone” in Venice from LAPD arrests and seizures –now!


Thanks for your help.

David Busch!
(310) 845-6034


Samples of the out of control rhetoric against homeless people:

A group of Venice homeless advocates met with Councilman Bill Rosendahl on Thursday, December 9, 2010 to discuss abuse of homeless by LAPD

A group of Venice homeless advocates met with Councilman Bill Rosendahl on Thursday, December 9, 2010 to discuss abuse of homeless by LAPD

A small group representing persons defined as homeless, mostly Venice Beach Artists, along with members of the housed community met with Bill Rosendahl yesterday to discuss the impact of the 20+ LAPD Officers on the targeted population, encouraging effective community based solutions, reminding the representatives of the City of LA that the face of homelessness in Venice has been unfairly represented in public forums and in the media, and the ongoing campaign to “police homeless” is not nor will ever be a solution.

On Saturday, beginning at noon, in the Venice circle (Windward and Main) a group will join together passing through Venice hot spots, to raise awareness and bring a face to homelessness. Please join in to stand united, for Venice is an inclusive community, and civil rights for every individual matters.

Lisa Green, Venice Artist
Green Party of Los Angeles, Co-Chair
Love is the strongest power in the universe

Darlene Knoll has lived in her RV on the street for the past 8 years. She has been harassed and intimidated by LAPD to the point that she sought sanctuary in a church parking lot, afraid to be on the street. Darlene has become an activist, trying to protect the homeless in Venice but she is afraid of being targeted by the new LAPD Task Force that has been towing vehicles and arresting their owners.