Valley Cityhood Movement


My husband and I are deeply saddened and disappointed to watch the divisiveness developing between the Latino community in the San Fernando Valley and the supporters of the Valley cityhood study. We write this letter in the hope that we will all refuse to follow the dichotomous path paved for us by those who wish to maintain the status quo, and instead forge ahead in developing a model for a new and better way of life in Southern California.

The move for Valley cityhood can be characterized in many different ways by any number of interest groups. Unfortunately, it is in the greatest interest of the media to emphasize those ways in which the movement has the potential to pit the haves against the have-nots, conservatives against liberals, minorities against whites. Even the underlying racial connotations of the repeated use of the word “secession” are not lost on us. This is the way the city of Los Angeles, and . . . the Los Angeles Times have always operated. This is the easiest way to present an issue, the most effective way to destroy an unwanted movement and, in defense of the media, it sells.

We implore the people of the Valley to resist this divisive pressure. The move for Valley cityhood is not about the city of Los Angeles; it’s about the Valley. . . . It defies logic that smaller, more accessible government and greater representation will result in less power for anyone. This movement is the opportunity for those interested in these issues to help create a new government that better reflects our needs, hopes, dreams and lives, instead of continuing to be thankful for the crumbs periodically thrown to us. It is an opportunity to try to correct the years of fraud, misrepresentation and neglect that have characterized the city of Los Angeles’ development of the Valley as we know it. More importantly, it is an opportunity for us to realize our strength as a cooperative community. Don’t let the powers that be divide and conquer us before we’re even out of the starting gate.




Your editorial asks the rhetorical question, “So what is the advantage?” regarding having a new city in the San Fernando Valley separate from the city of Los Angeles (“Cut the Contradictions,” Dec. 13). Your editorial suggested that only those who want power in a new city might benefit. Allow me to share what I consider to be a few other advantages to a new city:

* Having the city be founded as a “general law” municipality, as opposed to being charter-based. That alone will save hundreds of thousands of dollars each time an out-of-date charter needs to be reformed.

* Term limits for City Council members. Not just the mayor! What a concept! (John Ferraro, retirement is calling!)

* Removal from office if a City Council member is convicted of breaking a law, or violating probation. Another new concept!

* Early recognition of problems affecting the community, and prompt resolution thereof. Example: The 101/405 [freeway] interchange, which not one L.A. City Council person has done a . . . thing about (for example, Hal Berson, Laura Chick).

* The new city could negotiate between L.A. city, L.A. County or other agencies for services. Privatization appears to work in many other cities, but not Los Angeles.


* A city work force that responds to the citizens, not just Jackie Goldberg.

* A fair and equitable business tax structure that will create jobs and not kill the creation of them!

My recommendation is that you look around and come to the realization that there are plenty reasons for a new city to be formed in the San Fernando Valley. When you start a new city, all you have to do is look at Los Angeles to see how not to do it.