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Hawaiian Gardens Planning Commissioner Anna Rodriguez Calls City-Sponsored Senior Programs ‘Excessive’

Sunday June 30, 2019, 4:14 p.m.


Hawaiian Gardens Planning Commissioner Anna Rodriguez, who was appointed by current City Mayor Myra Maravilla, evidently does not think very highly of the City’s senior population.

During public comment at a Hawaiian Gardens City Council meeting, Rodriguez was heard on video wanting to cut from the City budget what she termed “excessive senior programs” and give all the money to the City’s youth programs.

“No offense to the senior citizens, I see a lot of programs that I don’t feel that there should be, its excessive.”

As a planning commissioner, Rodriguez receives a stipend every month from the City, while also traveling to conventions, going to the pricey Contract Cities Convention in Palm Desert this past May.


Spending Taxpayer Dollars: from (l-r) Hawaiian Gardens Councilman Jesse Alvarado, Parks and Recreation Staffer Juan Serrano, Mayor Myra Maravilla and Planning Commissioner Anna Rodriguez poolside at the Contract Cities Convention.


Rodriguez went on to say, “no offense to our senior citizens but I feel like some of the programs and events or trips they go on are excessive.”

There are a small number of senior programs that is offered by the City, including arts and crafts, billiards, bingo, and Zumba.



Others can be termed as activities occurring at the City’s Recreation Center such as cupcake decorating and free computer use.

The City also runs a well-attended Golden Age Senior Club, Sunshine club, and delivers 1,540 meals each month to Hawaiian Gardens seniors.

Two or three excursions are offered each month to places such as the Getty Museum and Pala Casino and average 30 participants on each trip.

Still, the number of programs and excursions caused Rodriguez concern, indicating that “she wanted to see more funds spent on our youth.”

Then Rodriguez said something that caused everyone in the room to gasp.

“Yes, I would like to see more of [the money] geared towards our youth because eventually we’re all going to pass away anyway.”

Former Hawaiian Gardens Mayor Ray Rodriguez was incensed, telling HMG-LCCN, “Ms. Rodriguez clearly said why not take money from the seniors’ budget and give it to the youth programs they are going to die anyway, unbelievable.”

Resident-activist Joy Zermeno told HMG-LCCN, “Anna Rodriguez, our Planning Commissioner, said the seniors are eventually going to die, so take money from their budget, disgusting.”

“She is a commissioner and gets a stipend each month as a public servant, so why doesn’t she propose to cut her own stipend to help the senior’s out, how about cutting her travel budget too?”

Emails into Ms. Rodriguez from comment went unreturned.

  • Alberto and Maria G. says:

    SENIORS——-Difference between seniors/ youth. The youth are very mobile, plus they’ve got a unlimited resources to entertain themselves & are not impaired or physically challenged for the most part. .

    Our seniors are just the opposite. Many are poor, because they do not have unlimited resources nor are they very mobile, and the seniors are an increasing growing population in all cities. Most cities, are seeing a enormous decrease in kids. Since more and more people are receiving medical insurance and living longer, we’re starting to see more and more centurions emerging, and cities have to look out for them, since many have no heirs nor family. It’s a shame that so many seniors have had to revert to being homeless, there is just no money for rental housings. Social security, disability insurance Etc, are all very very limited for seniors. 401 retirement plans do not exist for many seniors.

    Personally I would like to see senior programs, activities, increased by all cities and counties, and feel our County Supervisors need to get more involved also. It’s a shameful, senior centers cannot work with other senior centers, and share programs and activities.

    Most of youth have parents, and they can drive them to other places for sports, programs, but the seniors don’t have that option, many seniors have a hard time just walking and driving. Lets face facts, many seniors are growing more and more impaired and the city/county are the role models, since seniors have limited voice in social/ urban affairs.

    A SENIOR Silver Alert is a public notification system in the United States to broadcast information about missing persons – especially senior citizens with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or other mental disabilities – in order to aid in locating them. Silver Alerts use a wide array of media outlets – such as commercial radio stations, television stations, and cable television.

    Sign up here: https://www.lacounty.gov/emergency/alert-la/

    Haw Gardens is serviced by ABCUSD, when was the last time, any schools or district at large, has reached out to seniors on a daily, weekly or monthly basis? Haw Gardens core is the catholic church, when was the last time, said church has aided local seniors? When was the last time, any citys have Incorporated new mobile home parks for seniors to live in small RV trailers, as there just is not enough affordable housing for seniors. Many seniors live in poverty and filth and would love to have the option to live in small self contained travel trailer inside of Haw Gardens. Katrina storms provided RV homes, Haw Gar should too. San Pedro based : SISTERS OF THE POOR, are one of the few LA groups, who are trying to feed our seniors.


  • Carlos R Arvizu Sr says:

    You want more wasteful spending money, cut your salary, look for ways to increase money for youth programs, look for wasteful spending. Expensive junkets, does not bring in revenue, it’s only for the enjoyment of these overpaid bureaucrats.
    I’d say Fire her!
    Carlos R Arvizu Sr