Will California Renters and Landlords Be Able to Make Peace?
Throughout this past pandemic year, I took note of the national moratorium on evictions with relief, but also a bit of foreboding. It was always clear that the moment the moratorium ended, that that the tenants would be fully responsible for all back rent. And if a person is so financially pinched that they can’t handle one month of rent at a time, how would they ever be able to pay off six months of back rent? Or nine months? Or fifteen months?Read full story
Governor Gavin Newsom Could Learn a Thing or Two from His Competitors
Governor Newsom is going to be challenged by over forty competitors in the upcoming gubernatorial recall election, but it’s doubtful that he’s paying close attention to any of them. The governor’s approval numbers are good, the state’s coronavirus case level has dropped to the lowest in the country, and the state economy looks to be having an enviable recovery from pandemic restrictions.Read full story
Does Governor Gavin Newsom Deserve a Recall or a Second Chance?
I called Los Angeles home for seventeen years, leaving just a few years before Gavin Newsom made his gubernatorial entrance in 2018. But I continue to take a keen interest in the state’s well-being and major developments. And of course, I’ve kept a close eye on the efforts to remove the governor from office through a recall vote.Read full story
Great News for California’s Post-Pandemic Economy
California has been widely criticized by residents and outsiders alike for stricter than average COVID-19 shutdowns, mask mandates, and other restrictive measures. But the effect on the state’s coronavirus crisis was irrefutable – after last winter’s holiday season, California’s case rate went from “worst to first” by late April, with 40,000 daily cases dropping to 2,300 and daily deaths dropping from 500 to 68.Read full story
Ohio Poised to Vote on the Future of All Vaccines
There’s been a lot of talk about recently proposed vaccine legislation in Ohio recently and no doubt, a lot of Ohioans have assumed that it was a COVID-19 specific discussion. It certainly has a lot to do with coronavirus vaccination plans but includes a multitude of far-reaching implications.Read full story
Should Denver Residents Be Concerned About Public Servants Refusing Vaccines?
Two deputy sheriffs in Denver dying from COVID-19 was far more than a local tragedy – it became a major national story. At a time when approximately 667 Americans are still dying every day from COVID-19, the tragedy of these two losses highlights a critical disagreement between the public health and political crusades to vaccinate as many Americans as possible and the antivaxxer movement.Read full story
Is "Vax for the Win" Going to Reel in California’s Vaccine Hesitant?
I know you must have heard by now. The state of California is following Ohio’s example and creating a lottery incentive to get more state residents vaccinated (Colorado and Oregon have also set up similar programs.)Read full story
Lessons Learned From the Echo Park Saga
It has been a long two months, but Echo Park is finally reopened to the public. The homeless tent encampment at Echo Park was cleared out over two months ago, much to the anguish of most of its unhoused residents and their advocates; but much to the relief of most of the neighborhood residents. The park had become a cluttered and dangerous place to them and many no longer felt safe or comfortable using park facilities.Read full story
Venice Beach Erupts into Normalcy
While I was living in L.A., I never knew that Venice Beach was the second biggest tourist attraction in Southern California, to the tune of ten million visitors a year (second only to Disneyland.) It felt like a unique and colorful place but I had no idea what an economic powerhouse it was for Los Angeles County.Read full story
Was Cedar Point Really Ready to Open?
When I was fifteen or sixteen years old, I was a bit fixated on what struck me as one of the world’s greatest jobs – ride operator at an amusement park. Keep in mind that the only real-life experience I had to compare it with was babysitting, house cleaning, cashiering, and repairing books at the library - nothing terribly exciting.Read full story
Does Governor Mike DeWine Understand the Realities of Unemployment?
Last week, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine rejected federal stimulus money that was intended to supply unemployed Ohioans an extension of the $300 a week benefits through September 2021. Instead, the final payments will be cut off after June 26.Read full story
The Violence at Venice Beach Hurts Residents and Homeless Alike
Image by Hier und jetzt endet leider meine Reise auf Pixabay aber from Pixabay. I lived in L.A. for seventeen years, most of them in a small studio in Los Feliz. But I had beach city dreams and when I “made it,” I knew there was a beautiful seaside oasis in Venice Beach or Hermosa Beach just waiting for me. I would often go to Venice just to write in one of the local coffeehouses for several hours and then cap the day off with a stroll through the canals or on the boardwalk – dreaming of a home there.Read full story
The Park's Reopening Brings Back a Flood of Disneyland Memories
If you’re reading this, it’s because you live in the Los Angeles area and you have a rare opportunity right now, should you choose to take advantage of it. Disneyland has reopened as of April 31, 2021, but only at 25% capacity and only to residents of California – that’s you.Read full story
The Best (and Worst) Options for Re-Naming Cleveland's Baseball Team
I don’t know how many stages of grief you need to go through to process the loss of the Cleveland Indians name, but I hope you’ve reached acceptance. Because it’s a done deal and the top priority right now is to make sure that Cleveland doesn’t get saddled with a dull or cringey name.Read full story
Is Cleveland State University’s Moderate Vaccine Approach the Best Path?
Across the country, over eighty colleges and universities have announced that they are going to require all of their students and staff to take a COVID-19 vaccine as a requirement for joining the campus community this fall. Their numbers include Brown University, Yale University, Duke University, Stanford University, Wesleyan University, Vassar College, Spelman College, Morehouse College, California State University, University of California, Northeastern University, and the University of Notre Dame – to mention only a dozen.Read full story
L.A. Rents Have Come Down – But Is It Too Little, Too Late?
It has been a year of big changes and big decisions for Los Angelenos. Pandemic lockdowns. The rise of remote work. The rise of homeless encampments. The loss of income for many. There has been a measurable exodus out of the city and landlords have been pressured to re-price their rental properties accordingly.Read full story
Competing Strategies to End Homelessness in L.A.
When you first heard of the billion-dollar proposal to end L.A.’s Skid Row homelessness by October 2021, what was your reaction? Skeptical? Hopeful? Irritated? Relieved?. I both loved the announcement and at the same time, had to question – is this really doable within six months and if so, why on earth wasn’t it done five years ago? Ten years ago? Twenty years ago?Read full story
Was the Homeless Sweep of Echo Park a Model for Other Communities?
Until a few weeks ago, Echo Park had become home to over two hundred homeless individuals. It was finally cleared out of all tents and homeless residents in late March to great protest, anxiety, and controversy.Read full story
Cleveland Rents Could Be Worse, But Does That Make Them Affordable?
I listened in on a recent online discussion where a multitude of commenters complained about the rising and unaffordable levels of rent in their cities. A $450 rent that had become $950 in just a few years. Thirteen-hundred-dollar apartments. Twenty-four hundred-dollar apartments. When someone mentioned that they had a rent of $600 a month, it was received like the Holy Grail. Where on earth could such rent be found? Surely, it couldn’t really exist. What was clear is that it’s not only the renters in America’s largest cities who can barely afford their local housing. That pain seems to be spread all over the country. So, how are Cleveland renters faring?Read full story
Clevelanders Shouldn’t Miss the Gems in Their Own Backyard
I’ve spent a lot of time in the past several years fulfilling a global travel bucket list. And more recently, I contemplated exactly what destinations I would want to see on one last final road trip throughout the U.S. I didn’t give much thought to the cities that I’ve already lived in. After all, been there, done that.Read full story