Interview with Candidate Delaney Smith

SmithphotoWebfinalWhat are the top four responsibilities of a Councilmember and what, in your background has prepared you for the job?

To (a) represent all of the residents of the District, in this case District 10 including those who live South of Rodeo Road and as far north as Koreatown (b) to operate the city like an efficiently run business (c) to educate all residents of issues and or potential issues that are affecting or could affect them. (d) to provide protection and security to each of the Districts through community policing. When possible local neighborhoods should be policed by their friends and neighbors just as is true in many suburban communities.

There are a variety of different cultures and communities within CD10. Can you identify three or four, the issues that concern them and some of your solutions?

There is wide  socio-economic diversity in the 10th District communities.  There are white and African Americans that are financially well off who tend to live towards the north and western boundaries of the city. There are poor and middle income Latinos and African Americans who tend to occupy the central and South portions of the city. Asian communities in LA City’s 10th District extend north to Koreatown.

The issue of clean drinking water impacts all districts. 10 -15 years ago without announcement a decision was made to reconstruct the sewer system, whereby pipes were laid down along Jefferson Boulevard and Rodeo Road which drained sewer water from as far away as the San Fernando Valley. That chemically treated sewer water was filtered and then redirected to the residents of south Los Angeles as drinking water. The system is known as the sewer water Reclamation Project and also the "Toilet to Tap System".  For years South LA residents have complained that their kitchen faucet water oftentimes smells and is brown. We must preserve safe drinking water for all residents and discontinue water reclamation from sewers and expansion until safety issues are addressed.

Private drug use should be decriminalized and drug addiction treated as a medical problem just as it is in other communities like Beverly Hills and Pasadena.  Weed dispensaries should be sharply curtailed from the existing number which is said to be over 700 in the city, many of which are highly concentrated in South Los Angeles. Decriminalizing drug use would largely empty the prisons of those who had not committed violent crimes. The multi-billion dollar savings could be used to develop a health care plan for the entire city which would generate income for our city.

"Cash For Kids" as described by Daily News writer -Troy Anderson should no longer be tolerated.  For decades Los Angeles County DCFS has targeted black and Latino children who have Medi-Cal. That statis qualifies DCFS to receive Federal dollars (up to $40,000-$100,000 per year for each child that is removed from his family). Ed Edelman's Childrens' Court in Monterey Park California  is the only children's court in Los Angeles but nearly all the families that are having their children taken by DCFS are black and Latinos. 

Prison - Industrial Complex
Once the foster children become 18, or 21 years of age if in school, the Federal money stops, and the children are dumped onto the street with very little safety net in place, and no attempt to acquaint them or reunite them with their families. Family members most often times loved them, but the mother may have unknowingly been drug tested during a prenatal clinic visit in violation of Federal HIPPA Laws. Positive tests for marijuana or other drugs were used as grounds for DCFS taking the children from their mothers at the time of birth. Any black or Latino injured child on Medi-Cal taken to a LA County Hospital is considered to be IT (Intentional Trauma) until otherwise proven under circumstances whereby state court judges only approve payments to experts provided by the County for the purpose of removing children from their families. Approximately 70% of those in prisons today are former foster children. 

Poverty and homelessness are a serious issue in various communities in CD10 with street people being routed out of their homeless communities only to gather in other communities. How will you address this issue?

The homeless population in Los Angeles was largely created by former foster children being dumped onto the street at the age of 18, and when Governor Ronald Regan cut funding for psychiatric care in the 1980s.  Patients in psychiatric hospitals such as Metropolitan State Hospital were largely dumped onto the street.  Many of those living on the streets and prisons have major psychiatric illnesses that could be effectively medically treated.  Once treated many would be able to once again hold jobs and become productive citizens.

Poverty lives side by side with an influx of upwardly mobile families looking for affordable housing who bring money and the restoration of communities with them. Crime has increased as a result. Talk about the crime issues in our community and what are some solutions you, as Councilperson, can bring to the table.

Lack of jobs and crime go hand in hand in urban centers such as Los Angeles. If the county of Los Angeles was a country it would be ranked 10th in the world financially. The city of Los Angeles and Los Angeles County issue billions of dollars in contracts for various goods and services that include almost everything imaginable. Many of these contracts are given to vendors on the other side of the world. I would propose that local businesses which hire local residents should be given priority points in any related procurement bidding process.  Cheap labor on the other side of the world affects our job market.  

Development is coming to CD10.  Although it will provide more housing and greater shopping options it could also have a negative effect on surrounding communities. Can you identify some of the potential problems and what, if anything, you could do as our councilperson to minimize any negative effects of incoming development?

Increasing community development that includes accommodation for increased traffic flow, adequate affordable parking, parks and recreational centers will minimize the negative effects of community development projects.

Share some of your experience with community outreach.  

I am an experienced businessman. I have a Doctorate in Pharmacy from USC; and an MD from Loyola University of Chicago, and a BS Degree in Pharmacy from Xavier University in New Orleans. I opened the first urgent care center in Los Angeles in 1983. I have been involved in the training of hundreds of healthcare workers. I have successfully testified as an expert witness against DCFS attorneys and social workers who had wrongfully taken children from their families. I am a Civil Surgeon For The United States Government. Lets fix the local state courts and remove all Federal financial incentives for incarcerating our residents young and old residents.  LA county is the nation's capital for incarcerations and we as citizens are paying for prison over flow into other states as far away as Mississippi. These incarcerations  consume money that could have been used for education and healthcare.

Federal and State funding are acquired through having community deputies who are experienced with applying for grants.  What is your knowledge of this and your plan for accessing this funding for our community? 

Money for community deputies that are "grant writers" is money that is well spent. There are billions of dollars available through various agencies, (eg. through the Affordable Care Act)  that we should be accessing to create health care delivery system pilot projects such as the "Community Healthcare Cooperative Pilot Project"  that I created over 20 years ago.  I would advocate spending as much money as needed to collect free FEDERAL money that is now available for various community projects.

Councilman Wesson is an ambitious politician adept at acquiring power.  Why do you think you can topple him?

The mere acquisition of power for the purpose of acquiring still The mere acquisition of power for the purpose of acquiring still another seat and more seat warming by a "career politician" is no power at all,  if at the base of "alleged power" there is nothing but smoke and mirror tricks. Herb Wesson and the city of Los Angeles are both presently being sued in federal court by Civil Rights attorney Leo Terrell and Korean litigants for re drawing the political boundaries of the 8th and 10th Districts along racial lines thought to be politically beneficial for Herb Wesson to hold onto his seat.  Appearing on CNN Herb Wesson implied that Los Angeles residents are too apathetic or lazy to vote unless a financial incentive like a “lottery” of some kind is offered to draw them out. To the contrary I believe that informing residents of the issues that he won’t discuss will drive them to polls to vote against him.

I PREDICT THAT HERB WESSON WILL NOT SHOW UP ANY DEBATES THAT ARE SCHEDULED.  WHAT KIND OF POWER IS THAT !!!   Local residents complain that he is not accessible to address questions or assist in resolving issues.  Informing the public that I have fresh ideas for the purpose of increasing jobs and a related election is scheduled for March 3rd will topple Herb Wesson. For example Los Angeles is a city in crisis in that we are losing hundreds of employers each year to other cities and states that have a more favorable tax rate for businesses. To stop this current trend I would propose reducing city business taxes by nearly one third [from 5% gross income to 3.5%]. I would attract new businesses  to Los Angeles by eliminating the city business tax for the first 3 years of new business operation. This  tax reduction will serve as a magnet for attracting new businesses and jobs.

Wages have stagnated for the past 15 years. Raising wages including the minimum wage is long over due. . But to avoid hurting small businesses, raising wages can only be considered within the context of having a business friendly city tax rate that will reduce business taxes to free up monies needed to issue employee raises.    

I am endorsed by the Union of American Physicians and Dentist, and their affiliated Insurance Companies, Medical Groups, Medical Associations, and Unions.  I am also endorsed by pharmaceutical companies.

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Established in August of 2008 by writerartist Dianne V. Lawrence, The Neighborhood News covers the events, people, history, politics and historic architecture of communities throughout the Mid-City and West Adams area in Los Angeles Council District 10.

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