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Rep. Sánchez Requests $10M for Local City Projects and Organizations

 

BY BRIAN HEWS • JULY 19, 2021

Representative Linda Sánchez (D-Lakewood) is working to secure nearly $10 million dollars for local cities and organizations, including $2 million for tiny La Palma to rehab their street medians. The money comes from the 2022 Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies bill.

A $475,000 request was made for better accessibility and lighting at the City of La Mirada’s ten-acre Neff Park. The funding would be used to replace deteriorated asphalt walkways with concrete, place new concrete walkways to enhance accessibility to all areas, improve lighting throughout the park, and extend wood rail fencing around the park’s perimeter. These improvements would improve public safety at the park and help meet requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The park includes three historic buildings, a gazebo, a basketball and tennis court, horseshoe pits, a newly renovated playground, and picnic areas. In addition, the park hosts community events.

Sánchez requested $2 million to rehab La Palma’s arterial street medians; a redesign that will address California’s ongoing drought and water restrictions. The project includes the removal of existing landscaping/irrigation, hardscape removals and replacement, installation of a new drip irrigation system, planting of new trees along with new landscaping/hardscaping in 48 median islands. Re-grading of the medians is also included to capture irrigation and storm runoff to meet state/federal storm water regulation compliance. Three newly designed median islands on Moody Street from Malaga Avenue to Orangethorpe Avenue would be added, with the completed project presenting a consistent median island design for all of the City’s roadway medians. This project will be built in preparation for the use of reclaimed water for irrigation to reduce the use of potable water.

A $322,000 request was made for Bellflower’s Constitution Park, adding new recreational amenities, including play and fitness equipment, and a sports court. The funding request for this project will serve to address the final phase in the plan to revitalize the park. The City has already seen a reduction in illegal activity within the park and increased positive, recreational pedestrian traffic.

Sánchez requested $300,00 for Montebello to build the Henry Acuna Park Dog Park. Montebello’s first dog park will feature an enclosed area for dogs to exercise, socialize and play off-leash under the supervision of their own owners. The area that the dog park would be constructed would feature fencing, double-gated entry, benches, dog waste stations, a water station, shade and adequate drainage. The area is approximately 32,630 square feet, located near the park’s center and is adjacent to an existing playground and picnic areas.

For Norwalk, Sánchez requested $1.72 million for various sites in the City. The Smart Cities Digital Divide Free Wi-Fi project is designed and developed for Norwalk underserved neighborhood students, employees, workers, and small businesses. The City is looking to create areas within public parks and facilities near these locations. The Smart Cities Solution will provide students, employees, and small businesses with a free opt-in “Smart & Safe” Wi-Fi Zones. This is a critical Wi-Fi resource necessary to simply exist in this COVID pandemic and post-COVID era to intentionally diminish the digital divide.

Sánchez requested $2.5 million for the Pico Rivera Water Authority for a PFAS Groundwater Treatment Project. These funds are to be used toward the design, environmental and construction of Phase 1 of the Pico Rivera Water Authority’s PFAS Groundwater Treatment Project. Work on this project started in November 2019 and is expected to be completed by April 2022. Due to industrial activities in prior years, the groundwater aquifers are contaminated with PFAS – commonly known as “forever chemicals.” In order to provide potable drinking water to surrounding communities, the Pico Rivera Water Authority must pump and thoroughly treat water to eliminate this contamination.

Sánchez requested $200,000 for the Boys & Girls Club of Whittier for their Main Clubhouse. The current two-story clubhouse does not meet all safety requirements and is inaccessible to some community members. The funding would be used to make modifications that improve accessibility, safety, and equity. The modifications will include a fully ADA-compliant elevator, accessible restrooms, ADA-van accessible parking, accessible pathways, and related equipment and labor. The main clubhouse serves more than 5,000 high-need individuals and will better serve the community, including to parents with infants in a stroller, seniors and older family members, and persons with physical impairments.

Sánchez requested $1.5 million for Los Angeles County Department of Public Works to complete Rosemead Boulevard street improvements. The Rosemead project will construct 2.6 miles of protected bikeways and walkways along Rosemead Boulevard which divides the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area and is a major north-south route for vehicular traffic. The project will enhance safety for pedestrians and bicyclists along Rosemead Boulevard and improve non-vehicular access to the various recreational destinations within the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area such as Legg Lake, playgrounds, multiple soccer and softball/baseball fields, walking trails, the Whittier Narrows Nature Center, the San Gabriel River Bike Path, the Lario Trail, and the Rio Hondo Bike Path.

The Whole Child – Mental Health and Housing Services could get $500,000 for Interim Housing & Supportive Services Center for Homeless and Veteran Families. The Whole Child (TWC) would receive funding to construct an Interim Housing and Support Services Center for Homeless Families to be located in Santa Fe Springs, California. Specifically, the funding would be used toward construction of a 40-unit interim housing and 6,000 square foot supportive services center. Interim housing units would provide six to nine months of safe temporary housing, a crucial first step away from homelessness, and supportive services would be available to help families solve issues that caused their homelessness and to locate permanent housing.

Sánchez requested $450,000 for the Whittier Public Library Foundation to remodel the Central Library. The Foundation is requesting $250,000 in funding for Teen Center and Homework Center and $200,000 for Children’s Section be used for enhancement to the Children and youth services section in the Library. The facility has overcrowded shelving; lack of seating for Library users, inadequate electrical capacity including wiring, power outlets, data lines and space for the current and new technology; lack of community meeting place for the wide variety of library programs which the Library now offers; inadequate space for housing and displaying local history materials and collection; poor lighting; and a critical shortage of workspace.

The inclusion of this funding in the Appropriations Committee draft bill is the first step in the funding process. Sánchez said she “will continue to fight for this funding” as the bill moves to the full Appropriations Committee, consideration on the House Floor, and negotiations with the Senate.

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