June 12, 2014
LAWT News Service
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti will be the keynote speaker for Crenshaw Chamber of Commerce’s general membership meeting on Tuesday, June 17 at 12:00 pm at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza’s second floor bridge located at 3650 West Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., in Los Angeles.
The monthly meeting is open to the public and lunch will be catered by Chef Kyle Brown of Maverick’s Flat. Admission is $15 in advance or $20 the day of the event. To purchase a ticket or to inquire about a sponsorship opportunity, contact the chamber at (323) 293-2900.
“We are honored to have Los Angeles’ 42nd Mayor come and address our community of business stakeholders,” said Armen D. Ross, president of the chamber.
Ross said this luncheon is a historic event because it’s the first time a mayor has spoken at this chamber which has a predominantly African American membership.
“While there is concern in the Black community over the number of new jobs for area residents along the Crenshaw/LAX Transit corridor, the chamber is pushing hard for new business opportunities and the preservation of existing businesses during construction of the Crenshaw Light Rail. We are ready to have a dialogue with him about these and other concerns in the Crenshaw Corridor.”
The Crenshaw Light Rail first appeared as an 8.5 mile $1.7 billion dream that would run down Crenshaw Boulevard from the Baldwin Hills-Crenshaw areas to the Los Angeles International Airport, connecting disenfranchised communities with a more viable form of transportation and possibly an enhanced quality of life.
“There was a great deal of community support for a Leimert Park station and unyielding requests to have the Light Rail run underground from Exposition Boulevard all the way to 60th street,” said Ross. “But it will only be underground to Vernon,” he added.
Ross said many of the problems of South LA, “have occurred from years and years of major retailers ignoring the area and fearing a commitment to our community.” He said it’s time to move ahead with a new agenda and with new leadership that will work together to have a long-term positive impact on the corridor.
“Crenshaw Boulevard is one of the greatest and most historic boulevards in the city. We want to work to restore that greatness,” said Ross, a seasoned political insider and entrepreneur. He served as the Deputy Mayor for Homelessness for Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn. Prior to that he was the Assistant Chief of Staff for Los Angeles City Councilmember Nate Holden.
Ross said some of the other key points the chamber will address are:
• Economic Development along the Crenshaw corridor
• An Update on the Light Rail.
• What are his plans for small business for the greater Crenshaw community?
• Eliminating the COLA Business Tax.
• How will the city help to make Leimert Park, the cultural centerpiece of South Los Angeles, a tourist destination since it’s located in one of the most affluent African American communities in the country?