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CITY HALL JOURNAL

June 04, 1995

A summary of selected Los Angeles City Hall actions last week that affect the Westside.

CITY COUNCIL

* HOWARD STERN CONDEMNED--Approved a motion condemning Howard Stern for comments he and his associates made about Mexican American singer Selena, who was killed April 3 in Corpus Christi, Texas. Stern talked disparagingly about her music on his nationally syndicated radio show, saying that "Alvin and the Chipmunks had more soul than her." Also, Fred Norris, an on-air associate of Stern, played gunshot sound effects during one of her songs. Councilman Richard Alatorre, author of the motion, likened the verbal attack to a terrorist attack. "I believe in freedom of speech, but he doesn't have the right to insult an entire community," he said. Councilwoman Jackie Goldberg said, "He has the right to be as obnoxious as he wants. He has a right to speak and we have a right, an obligation, to condemn his speech." Stern is known for his willingness to make fun of anything, including himself and his own mother.

* BLOCK PARTY--Approved the temporary closure of 75th Street between Airport Boulevard and 6606 W. 75th St. from 4 to 10 p.m. June 17 for a block party to celebrate the 40th birthday of resident Fay Woo. About 150 well-wishers are expected to celebrate with Woo, who was diagnosed with a terminal disease at age 2 and was not expected to live beyond her teens.

HOW THEY VOTED

* WESTWOOD IMPROVEMENTS--Instructed the controller to establish the following accounts to improve traffic flow in the Westwood area: Wilshire Boulevard between Malcolm and Comstock avenues ($210,000), Wilshire Boulevard between Federal Avenue and San Vicente Boulevard ($23,000), Wilshire Boulevard at Sepulveda Boulevard ($30,000), Santa Monica Freeway (405) northbound on-ramp at Getty Center Drive ($200,000), and 405 freeway southbound on-ramp at Santa Monica Boulevard and Beloit Avenue ($53,000). The projects will consist of improvements including lane re-striping, paving and street and freeway ramp widening. Passed 11-0. Voting yes: Marvin Braude, Ruth Galanter, Mark Ridley-Thomas and Goldberg. Absent: John Ferraro, Nate Holden.

PUBLIC WORKS COMMITTEE

* PRIVATE AMBULANCES--Approved a plan by the Board of Fire Commissioners to use private ambulances in instances when lives are not threatened. If the measure is approved by the City Council, the Fire Department will accept bids from private ambulance companies for the contract, which will involve up to 85,000 calls a year.

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