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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
Los Angeles County, CA March 5, 2013 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
Mayor; City of Los Angeles

The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of Los Angeles and asked of all candidates for this office.     See below for questions on Most Important Issue, Budget Shortfall, Sales Tax, Climate Change, Public Transportation, Education

Click on a name for candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

? 1. What do you think is the single most important issue facing the City of Los Angeles today? As Mayor what would you do to deal with it?

Answer from Wendy J. Greuel:

I'm running for Mayor rebuild our economy and create jobs. Stopping the cycle of crisis, layoffs and cuts means making LA more business friendly, bringing Hollywood home, adding job training programs, and cracking down on waste at City Hall.

Answer from Kevin James:

The most important issue is avoiding bankruptcy. In order to avoid bankruptcy, we must implement real pension reform and make Los Angeles a business friendly city. I am the only candidate with the necessary Independence required to obtain these reforms.

Answer from Norton Sandler:

The jobs crisis. It will never be solved under capitalism. Working people must organize and mobilize to take political power out of the hands of the ruling rich and establish a workers and farmers government.

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

The biggest issue facing our city is the lack of innovation and responsiveness. City Hall needs to be responsive to the needs of the people. What do Angelenos want? They want better city infrastructure, more transportation options, access to critical city services, and economic opportunities here in Los Angeles. Budgeting, education, and economic development are the biggest areas where Los Angeles needs attention and improvement. New and innovative ideas are critical to making a positive change in all of these areas, and that requires a new kind of leader.

I'm already doing what the next mayor needs to do. My team and I have reached out to over 100,000 people face to face or by phone. Having stakeholder meetings, making myself available for phone calls or office visits, and going door to door to talk with Angelenos are just a few of the ways to make sure all voices and concerns are heard. It's what I'm doing now and what I'll continue doing as mayor.

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

Jobs and the economy, they are linked.

Jobs and the Economy + solutions + YJ Draiman r6 As Mayor of LA, how would I create jobs? We have a tremendous amount of natural resources here in Los Angeles, which we need to develop. To put it succinctly, "You can not drill for American oil and natural gas in China, Saudi Arabia or anyplace else other than America."

The more domestic energy we produce, renewable and non-renewable, the more domestic jobs we create. Moreover, jobs in the exploration and production of oil and natural gas pay more than twice the national average. At the same time, the domestic energy we produce will increase R&D in renewable energy sources, thus, increase efficiency.

Just look how far we have come in the development of renewable energy and energy efficiency in the past 10 years. I intend to accelerate that trend, and to take advantage of every resource possible in technology and funding. As I stated many times; "Those who control the energy supply control whole continents"; "Those who control the water sources control life".

Americans should demand products made in the USA. We can produce a better product with better quality at a competitive price. It is my intention to provide numerous incentives to retain businesses here in Los Angeles, and to offer those incentives to bring businesses back to Los Angeles.

Employment creates revenues and saves the government money and resources by taking the unemployed off the government subsidy and social services. It also creates the "multiplier affect", which is a snowball of economic growth.

One of my top priorities is to ensure that we continue to develop and promote renewable energy sources. Many in the natural gas industry believe the day when renewable energy dominates our energy landscape is far off. I disagree. With American ingenuity, innovation and determination, the dawn of renewable energy sources can be upon us now.

What I propose is a "do-it-all strategy" in which we focus not just on developing renewable energy, but also on the development of our abundant fossil fuels. While further technology and innovation in building construction would need to be developed, such need would also provide more jobs. More importantly, our reliance on over-priced outside energy would be decreased resulting in positive economic growth.

I would promote the design of a thermal solar system that provides energy, heat and hot water. In addition, I would initiate a new and advanced fuel technology for vehicles such as hydrogen, natural gas and ultra-capacitors for energy storage. Los Angeles wastes an enormous amount of energy and work hours due to traffic congestion. I plan on an expedient advancement of our public transit system and devise systems to reduce traffic congestion.

In urban areas: roads, sidewalks, buildings and other structures prevent rainwater from being absorbed in the ground and replenishing the aquifers. It is time for us to compensate for that loss by collecting the rain runoff into retaining ponds. We need to implement the use of rainwater harvesting, gray water technology, collecting the billions of gallons of rain runoff into retaining ponds, desalinization projects powered totally by renewable energy (solar and wind combo systems) and other methods of conserving natural resources. As such, we would make existing renewable systems more cost effective and more efficient.

The result of my programs would be the increase of jobs, the decrease of energy and operating costs, and a reduction of our reliance on foreign oil. That in turn would result in decreasing the deficit and creating permanent jobs.

In short, the key to Los Angeles economic recovery is not an increase in taxes and fees. Rather, true long-term recovery will rely on the increase of efficiency and productivity; the reduction of bureaucracy; and the promotion of businesses and employment. All of which will instill confidence in our economy, generate greater revenues for the city of Los Angeles and other governmental entities.

American confidence in government is at an all time low. We no longer have the same level of faith in our institutions and leaders that we once had. Consequently, we are seeing a continued erosion of our outlook on the future. This outlook must change by initiating a massive and sound education program that produces innovation and technology.

We have an opportunity to jumpstart our economy, protect our environment and put our city on the path toward energy security through greater use of our domestic energy production such as natural gas. Our domestic energy production can serve as a foundation for our energy and economic independence. This path will enable us to develop the required innovation and production of other forms of energy sources.

To realize a course toward energy and economic security we must do what is necessary to instill confidence in the responsible development of our energy sources. We can use natural gas as a solid foundation on which to develop extensive R&D in renewable energy sources, and the efficient means to operate and maintain the mechanisms needed for such use.

Improving our educational system is the key to our economic survival. In a global, knowledge-driven economy, there is a direct correlation between engineering education and innovative progress. Our success or failure as a city will be measured by how well we do in providing the needed educational tools to promote innovation in all fields.

Leadership is not a birthright. Despite what many Americans believe, our city does not possess an innate knack for greatness. Greatness must be worked for and won by each new generation. Right now that is not happening. However, we still have time. If we place the emphasis we should on education, research and innovation, we can lead the world in the decades to come. Nevertheless, the only way to ensure we remain great tomorrow is to increase our investment in science and engineering today. In addition, we must invest in trade schools to train our future workers in the new and old technology.

We have to learn how to balance the need of the people vs. the need to protect the environment. Any extreme to either side is not good.

In today's fast moving technologies, government as well as companies must learn to adjust and maneuver quickly to keep pace, or they will be out of business or incur deteriorating revenues and infrastructure. We must learn how stay competitive and resourceful to survive and thrive economically.

I submit: Leadership by example. I plan to cut waste, maximize productivity, reduce bureaucracy, increase efficiency and conservation in all city departments and assets, eliminate duplicating tasks and reward excellent performance and innovative methods of job performance. In addition, we have to use the Neighborhood Council's more effectively; they are the eyes and ears of all the communities in Los Angeles. These are hard economic times; we must all put our shoulder to the task.

We must put all our differences aside and work together in harmony for the good of the people and the city of Los Angeles. Your vote for me will be one more step in this positive direction and it will be a win for all the people in LA.

YJ Draiman youtube

Answer from Jan Perry:

I'm running for Mayor to set the table of opportunity for all Angelenos through job creation and economic development. As Mayor I will rebuild and revitalize LA as I have with Downtown the economic and cultural epicenter of the region.

? 2. The City Administrative Officer has estimated a $200M budget shortfall for 2013-2014 increasing to $300M in 2015-2016. What steps do you propose to deal with this problem, and how much do you estimate each step would reduce the shortfall?

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

City budget shortfalls are the result of our growing pension crisis. Without reform, the City's pension bill for retirees--including fire, police, and the Department of Water and Power (DWP)--could increase to half the City's budget in 5 years. This would leave little money for public safety, sanitation, or other essential services, and would result in layoffs for city workers. Any solution to the City's budget problems must start with reforming our pension system.

Unfortunately, because of poorly-timed and ill-advised decisions (including a massive 2007 pay increase), we likely won't be able to provide all the benefits we've promised our workers. We must find a way to reform our benefit system for both new hires and current employees. This could be accomplished with increases in the retirement age, adjustments to the benefits formula (such as the COLA), a move towards a 401(k)-like plan, and buyouts.

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

I think to be honest and taking all the obligations into considerations including the full extent of the Pension and Healthcare liability, that the deficit would be far higher. We have to face our problems head on with realistic numbers. If we delude ourselves that the numbers are lower and not realistic, it is going to hurt the budget much more the next year. What we need is a disaster plan and disaster response, which requires identifying those in need of critical attention from those who need minimal. The city has to go on an austerity program. Set goals for short term. mid term and long term. In my opinion and many others the best solution is to help existing businesses survive. Set up a department that promotes businesses in the City of Los Angeles. The current fact is that Los Angeles is very unfriendly to businesses. Thousand of business is leaving LA or closed down altogether, Many thousands are leaving the city in droves. These facts are reducing revenues to the city erode confidence of the people in its government. I am a strong believer in "Made in The USA" and in developing Los Angeles's natural resources. Build an infrastructure that sets LA as "The World Capital of Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation.

Answer from Kevin James:

I would implement real pension reform. If the Council will not agree, I would go around them and, as Mayor, work to get pension reform put on the ballot.

My ideas for pension reform include the following:

First, pension reform has to include all of the city unions, including the DWP.

Second, we must raise the retirement age. I agree with the proposal to raise the retirement age for civilian employees to 67. As for public safety employees (as well as civilian jobs that require a certain level of physical exertion), we should move those employees to other needed positions requiring less physical strain during later years of their employment if the situation warrants it.

Third, we cannot maintain the current discount rates of 7.5% to 8% - that rate must come down to reality.

Fourth, we must raise the contribution rates that employees contribute to their own pension and health insurance costs. I know some of the unions have agreed to this already, but more is needed.

Fifth, we must further cap an employee's pension collections. This can be done a couple of ways, by capping the amount an employee can receive, or by limiting how much the city contributes each year -- all while recognizing that it might have to be further limited depending on the city's ability to move out of the current financial crisis.

Sixth, limiting pension calculations to an employee's base salary.

Seventh, we must also do something to stop the abuses of the pension system. For example, we should ignore an employee's last year of compensation when calculating pension benefits. That is when you see more abuse of the system.

Two of the more sweeping pension reform proposals that are now being put on the table I believe also deserve consideration. The first proposal is the elimination of the defined benefit pension in exchange for a 401(k)-style individual investment plan. The second (which was floated in the recent story about Riordan's meeting with Mayor Villaraigosa) returns power over the pensions to the voters.

Real pension reform is not an ideological issue, it is an actuarial issue - we simply do not have a choice.

Finally, I have a feeling that I am the only Mayoral candidate that has looked into recent developments in California case law concerning the vested-rights doctrine. Not to get too "in the weeds", but the courts appear to be on a trend toward easing the definition of what constitutes vested rights. That will give future city officials more leeway in renegotiating prior obligations -- especially city officials willing to battle it out in court in the name of saving city services and I am willing to have that battle.

These efforts, along with making Los Angeles a business friendly city, can close our budget gap over the next four years.

? 3. Do you support the ballot measure to increase the sales tax in the city?

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

No. Increasing bureaucracy, taxes and fees depresses the economy, reduces business development, which in turn reduces consumer spending and as a result reduces revenues to the government. Los Angeles cannot continue to tax its businesses and its people to death, everyone will leave the jurisdiction and there will be very few to tax if any. An avenue to boost the LA economy would be to initiate a program for Made in America products. This would require certain tax benefits to the manufacturer of products in LA. Any unemployed American, who returns to the workforce, reduces the dependency for financial and social support by the government. Thus, it turns the worker into a revenue generator for the government, while the employee's earning is spent on goods and services, which boosts the economy further. The city of Los Angeles must make it easy for businesses to thrive. This will create employment and increase revenues to the government and it will create the multiplier effect. Multiplier effect definition: An effect in economics in which an increase in spending produces an increase in national income and consumption greater than the initial amount spent. For example, if a corporation builds a factory, it will employ construction workers and their suppliers as well as those who work in the factory. Indirectly, the new factory will stimulate employment in laundries, restaurants, and service industries and the housing industry, which employs builders, plumbers, carpenters, electricians, etc.

Answer from Kevin James:

I am adamantly opposed to the proposed sales tax increase. This is yet another job killer coming out of City Hall.

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

A sales tax increase that hurts working people is not the answer to the City's financial problems. It might close our budget gap for a year or two, but before you know it, we'll be looking at other arbitrary tax increases designed not to put us on a sustainable budget path for the future, but cover up our politicians' mistakes.

Instead, we must increase the tax base, which in LA means ensuring that residents are working. There's untapped potential in places like South LA, where people are hungry for work. Unfortunately, due to lack of investment and lack of the right skills, unemployment is high in these areas. With the right investment incentives and skills training that matches the needs of employers, we can put LA back to work and increase revenue.

? 4. What role do you feel the City of Los Angeles has to play in addressing climate change? What should the City do and how would you implement it?

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

As the second largest city in the country, Los Angeles is in a unique position to take a leadership role in addressing climate change. Our size also means we have a large number of people, cars, and houses. That means a lot a lot of areas where we can show the rest of the country and the world how to reduce emissions, reduce pollution, and reduce the negative impact we have on the environment.

While managing the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board, I helped deliver the recommendation to President Obama for a national initiative to retrofit America's homes for energy efficiency + Home Star. The initiative provided performance-based incentives for homeowners and industry, consumer financing opportunities, and standards and quality training. Not only does this make our homes more energy efficient, it also puts people to work.

We don't need to wait for an energy system redesign. The technology and workforce is available + let's use it. As Mayor, I will implement a local home retrofitting program and other clean technologies citywide. By doing this, we'll be making residents more conscious of environmental issues, why they're so important, and how they can reduce pollution and their carbon footprint.

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

Every City in our country should have a role in addressing climate change.

Every City in our country should have a role in addressing climate change. YJ Draiman proposes & welcomes innovative renewable energy zone approach which will create 200,000 + new jobs over the next 5-10 years. An ambitious project that will transform the way universities, business and industry collaborate, and establish Los Angeles as a world leader in the research, development and design of next generation renewable energy technology, was announced today, January 2, 2011. Spearheaded by YJ Draiman and the Economic development agency, Various Enterprises, and National Technology Renewable Energy Zone, will be established in the city of Los Angeles with the Universities of Southern California Technology Innovation Development at its heart. A large parcel of land will be allocated to set up the renewable energy enterprise zone site, which will be within the boundaries of Los Angeles. There will be an academic center, which will be transformed into a center of excellence for academic research, commercialization and industry collaboration. The renewable energy zone initiative, which would span further than the confines of the City of Los Angeles and include Southern California, is expected to create 200,000 + new jobs over the next 5-10 years and give a boost to the Los Angeles economy through further industry academia collaboration and inward investment. The developer said: "This new vision of the Renewable energy Technology Innovation Center will be the cornerstone of Los Angeles Technology and Renewable Energy Zone. The developer's vision for The Renewable energy Zone is to provide a breeding ground for ambitious companies to harness cutting-edge research, access the best people and develop the products, which will shape the renewable energy industry of tomorrow. "Southern California has already claimed a place on the renewables map attracting energy heavyweights and pioneers in the solar and wind sector and I believe that by establishing this zone we will help reinforce Los Angeles position as a location of choice for the rapidly expanding renewables industry." Developer said: "The Universities in the Los Angeles area's Technology and Innovation Center is a transformational project for Los Angeles, building on California's great tradition of innovating new technologies and developments in fields; including energy and engineering while creating and supporting hundreds of jobs. Through this collaboration, the aim is to quadruple the scale of research program investment in Los Angeles in areas key to economic growth by up to $10 billion + in five to ten years. "And now, as an integral part of Los Angeles Enterprise's new Technology and Renewable Energy Zone, which aims to establish Los Angeles as a premier location for inward investment into world-leading technology and renewables research and development, we have the potential to deliver huge economic and social benefits, not only in Los Angeles but nationally and beyond." See Energy Zone:

Answer from Kevin James:

The City of Los Angeles has an obligation to be a good steward of the environment. It is important that the Mayor be an excellent communicator + communication skills are critical to one's ability to pitch projects, and to guarantee and deliver success. I am the only candidate in this race with over a decade of radio and television experience and have proven my ability to be an effective communicator in this campaign. I will continue to be the candidate that offers new ideas and viable solutions relating to the environment. I will point out to both labor and business that opportunities are endless for improving our environment and those opportunities include both labor and business and a healthier environment benefits everyone. As business leaders recognize that a cleaner environment improves the value of their businesses and makes LA a more attractive place for others to do business, viable plans and the implementation of new technologies become more real.

Being environmentally aware is not an option, it's a moral imperative, and with proper planning and implementation of new technology, it makes good business sense and can be accomplished with less expense than thought. In addition, the business opportunities for developing, marketing and installing new environmental solutions are significant.

Through my campaign, and as Mayor, I will continue to promote ways to utilize the benefits of available new energy saving technologies such as residential fuel cells, incentives to install geothermal cooling and heating, to make sure that we reach our solar capacity the right way and the best way for LA residents, and to find ways to better distribute the generation of power to reduce line loss and increase the health of the power grid. I will work to find new ways to fund incubators for new businesses that offer promising ways for improving the environment, particularly businesses offering new technologies.

Repeating slogans is not going to deliver the success our city needs. Rather, setting a realistic schedule for environmental improvements taking into account the capacity of our current infrastructure, and holding people accountable for the metrics of our plans and for achieving results is what counts. As Mayor, I will ensure that all department heads implement an accountability system for all tasks, including environmental, so progress can be tracked and so people can be held accountable for not getting things done on time and on budget.

? 5. As Mayor, you would sit on the Board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. What would you advocate there in terms of transportation policy?

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

It's hard to get from place to place in this City. Try getting from Eastside to Century City by bus + it used to take me over three hours to get to and from my job. LA has an undeniable mobility problem that we need to solve.

Subway and rail projects are popular ideas, but we've been talking about them for years, and any rail transit options could take another decade to complete.

In the meantime, we need to find solutions to transit problems that we can implement today. We need to facilitate multiple modes of transportation: buses, taxis, car-share, bike-share, and carpooling. We need to encourage the private sector, and partner with private companies, to provide some of these options. We need to improve the environment for private dollars to invest in our transportation networks.

And we need to make sure development in our city is transit-friendly and transit-oriented. This means that people live near where they work, or near mass transit options. Transit-oriented development will feature prominently in my community development plans. No longer will someone on the Eastside or South LA need to spend three hours commuting to work. I'll make sure they have good transit options, and good jobs where they live.

Answer from Kevin James:

My vision with regard to transit and density has several elements. First, to reduce parking trips by 30%. Transit oriented developments should be utilized where appropriate. However, TODs should not be placed near pollution sources like freeways which permanently damages the lungs. The city should also provide incentives to make TODs work such as a proper mix of businesses to really reduce trips.

We need to do a much better job of planning our public transit projects. Connectivity is a big issue in Los Angeles. If public transportation is not efficient or effective, large portions of the public will not use it. At-grade light rail is an example of transit that supports other modes of transit. However, we have failed at connectivity in many areas around the city. The areas around Mission College near Sylmar are just one example. We must complete the public transit connection to LAX + and do so now.

The MTA should re-work their kiosks to make them more user-friendly. The kiosks are now very poorly designed and discourage use (which gives passengers with choices an additional reason to avoid public transportation).

As you know, transit is only one aspect of density. LA must live up to its General Plan and related Community Plans + this includes issues surrounding water, power, urban forests, parks, etc.

Density must be supported by a strong and workable infrastructure + this is not only an environmental issue, but a public safety issue as well.

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

With the escalating cost of energy - it is time to re-visit expanding the transit system. Put all politics aside and look at a short-term goals and long-term goals. Expanding the mass transit system in the Los Angeles Metro Area is critical to the future vitality of its economy; it will save energy, reduce pollution, save lives, and increase health by reducing stress. It is time to forgo ego and consider the good of the public. A transit system utilizing cable car or light rail over the freeways or any other types of mass transit in the Los Angeles Metro area is a reasonable solution to decrease the congestion on the roads, save energy, reduce pollution, improve air quality, save money, save lives and improve our health. Cost of energy and vehicles and maintenance has climbed dramatically in the past 10 years, warranting this issue to re-examine the expansion of mass transit in the Greater Los Angeles Area. The longer we wait, the greater the cost and the more imperative this project becomes. In many areas of the country, there are transit stations and parking lots, which provide parking for the transit customers. The costs should not be astronomical. (Based on current energy costs, and future increases). There is no need to acquire large parcels of property; with some modification, such system can be implemented and operational within the next decade. Another option is building a transportation system over the Los Angeles River - From the San Fernando Valley to Orange County.

? 6. If elected, what role, if any, do you intend to play in K-12 education in Los Angeles?

Answer from Kevin James:

While the Mayor does not have direct control over the LAUSD, I will use the power of the Mayoral podium to promote and support needed reforms. Some of the reform items I support include open enrollment, which is also described as school choice, the parent-trigger legislation (as I believe anything that provides an incentive for parents to become more involved in their schools is good for public education). I also support reform measures to deal directly with violence and drug use in our public schools. I met with LAUSD Superintendent Deasy a few months ago and confirmed my understanding that the District has the infrastructure in place to move such troubled students into other facilities -- known in the District as "special day," "option" and "continuation" facilities. Moving students into these "high-attention" facilities serves two very important objectives -- (1) the student is transferred to an environment better suited for their individual needs, and (2) the classroom is able to function much more effectively without the distraction of the troubled student. The problem we face District-wide is the requirement that if the student is moved into the alternative facility, the Average Daily Attendance funds attached to the student go with the student to the alternative facility. Thus, teachers and administrators have an incentive to keep the troubled student in the original school even though the troubled student and the classmates around them would be better served by the transfer.

By failing to move these troubled students into available "high-attention" facilities, the District is giving up on them thereby setting them up for the school-to-prison pipeline. Under my proposed reform measure, students transferred to "high-attention" facilities can work their way back into the main stream school through good grades, good attendance and good citizenship.

I would also invite all stakeholders, particularly parents, to have a voice in the reform measures to improve the LAUSD by holding town hall meetings throughout the City in order to inspire, inform, motivate and empower parents and community members to become a more integral part of the education process to bring about these needed reforms.

Given the size and complexity of the LAUSD, I will create within the Mayor's office an Education Information Officer that will serve as a sounding board for parents, students, teachers and administrators. This office will be part of the Mayor's office and completely independent of the LAUSD. In the face of recent LAUSD scandals, including the Miramonte scandal, allegations of the misuse of funds, and fading confidence in our school district, Angelenos need to know that there is a safe place to go outside of the LAUSD to bring their issues and concerns.

The Mayor's office will also create an education liaison that will attend all LAUSD board meetings and will also serve as an education advisor in the Mayor's office. The Mayor's education office will create and operate a user-friendly resource website the will be a one-stop-shop for providing easy access to policies, municipal codes, and state and federal laws that directly relate to school facilities, rules, guidelines, and funds. This resource will also provide information about, and links to, organizations that cover education-related matters such as bullying, gangs, special education needs, drug use, school violence, school safety, and construction and land-use issues.

I will utilize the influence of the Mayor's office, including the power of the podium, to fight cuts to Adult Education Programs, which are critical in providing the training and skills necessary for many of our students to find jobs in today's workforce and to become productive members of society. Additionally, our public schools should reinstate vocational training at the middle school and high school levels. Partnerships with private business and industries will contribute to the cost of these reforms, and provide internships and job placement opportunities.

Unfortunately, the solution is not as simple as either protecting teacher seniority or laying off teachers based on who is the lowest-performing. Teachers do not get to pick their students. What we need is a full and comprehensive evaluation system that takes into account certain contributing factors, including class size, language barriers, socio-economic factors, and special needs circumstances of students. Such an evaluation system should also include peer evaluations. We must compare apples to apples in the implementation of the teacher evaluation process. Some students start out at a lower performance level than others and teachers should not be penalized simply because they were assigned a steeper hill to climb based on the student-related factors described above.

I would also advocate for the LAUSD to create a trade-tech diploma to return vocational training classes to our schools. These are good jobs that the community needs, and I have published a position paper on this that is included as one of my position papers below.

Answer from Yehuda "Yj" Draiman:

Education will rebuild Los Angeles economic sustainability I have three words to say to you. EDUCATION... EDUCATION... EDUCATION... You want to get ahead in life, you must have education. You want to compete in today's economy you must have education. You want to provide for you family you must have education. Education, vocational/trade schools and energy efficiency will be the spearhead to our economic recovery and economic sustainability. Education will lead to economic progress, bring about innovation and technology, trade schools will help people earn a living, Energy efficiency and Renewable energy will create jobs, save money, resources, and make LA energy independent. We all know no society cannot survive without water and energy. Water & energy conservation used effectively will save the city of LA billions of dollars every year. Those saved dollars will be used to build and enhance LA's economic vitality. My profession & expertise for the past 20 years has been in implementing Energy & utility efficiency. As mayor, one of my goals is to utilize my expertise and implement Energy & utility efficiency for the city of LA, while rebuilding our educational system. I will set-up an independent citizen oversight committee on government with members replaced every 2 years.

Answer from Emanuel Alberto Pleitez:

Los Angeles has one of the lowest high school graduation rates in the country. Education is a 24-hour job and it should be a 24-hour responsibility of the city. I will implement new programs aimed at keeping students in school, I will increase the number of options for learning outside the classroom, and I will increase training programs for people of all ages who need new skills to be part of the today's workforce.

I will create partnerships with businesses and colleges to ensure Angelenos are able to learn about, train for, and succeed in educational and economic opportunities. This means the creation and expansion of programs that match our students, regardless of age, with businesses and programs looking for potential employees. These programs, coupled with an increased emphasis on training for the most highly demanded skills, creates the potential for our students to learn both inside the classroom and outside through on the job training. I worked on a similar initiative--Skills for America's Future--while with the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League. 

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily. Candidates who did not respond are not listed on this page.

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Created: May 2, 2013 14:24 PDT
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