A better future for LA

Last year, the Los Angeles City Council created the Los Angeles 2020 Commission, a group made up of civic and political leaders, to analyze the city’s economic problems. In December, the commission released a tough analysis that depicts a city filled with poverty that lacks leadership and direction.

Three months later, the group has published a list of recommendations aimed at developing new fiscal stability and an environment that fosters job growth. We believe that these recommendations, included in the report A Time for Action, deserve serious consideration.

In order to improve how the government operates, it makes a lot of sense to hold municipal elections on the same date as state and federal elections. But we are concerned that creating a new municipal Office of Transparency and Accountability and a new commission to oversee the problematic Department of Water and Power (DWP) would simply create a much bigger bureaucracy.

Likewise, it is a good idea to tackle problems related to creating jobs at the county level, to make it easier for new companies to come to the region. However, we know that the idea of combining the operations of the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach would face serious political opposition in both cities.

On the other hand, the lack of solutions for the transportation mess and traffic jams, the high levels of poverty and the huge number of homeless people in our streets is worrisome.

It is no coincidence that the report was released the day before Mayor Eric Garcetti delivers his first State of the City address. He is expected to pay attention and respond to the commission’s report—which, after all, is a solid step forward in the tough job of setting Los Angeles on the path to a better future.