A panel convened by City Council President Herb Wesson has just released a Cassandra-style report declaring Los Angeles A CITY IN DECLINE!!!!1!!1 (formatting and punctuation ours): "strangled by traffic, weighed down by poverty and suffering from 'a crisis of leadership and direction,'" according to the LA Times. Uh, did they not hear what GQ just said about Downtown? The report will be released today, but the LAT shares some lowlights in an article that ends with five paragraphs detailing conflicts of interest. The 13-member Los Angeles 2020 Commission formed last year to tackle job creation and economic expansion, but it addresses so much more in its report, which is, no joke, called "A Time For Truth" (tone it down, dudes): It says the LAUSD is "failing our children and betraying the hopes of their hardworking parents'"; that the Measure R transpo tax hike wouldn't fix traffic; that the LAPD's 10,000-officer benchmark is "not real" because of the way officers are actually deployed; that LA was too slow in approving USC's development plans; that the city is "dramatically underinvesting" in the harbor, LAX, and the LADWP; and that the LA basin has become a walled prison island populated only with criminals, perverts, and moral reprobates. "The city where the future once came to happen has been living in the past and leaving tomorrow to sort itself out," the report warns.
The LA 2020 Commission was chaired by former US Commerce Secretary Mickey Kantor, who as a corporate lawyer represented a railway whose railyard was promoted in the report; other members include USC's senior vice president/former LADWP commissioner, the head of LADWP's employee union, and the former head of the LADWP. These men will offer their recommendations for solving all of what they say are LA's most important problems later this year.
· Report calls L.A. a city in decline, warns of crisis in leadership [LAT]