Parks and Environment

Upgrade Of The South Bay Bike Trail Complete

A major upgrade and overhaul of the South Bay Bike Trail is now complete, Supervisor Don Knabe announced today. The renovated bike path is located between 62nd Avenue and Culver Boulevard in the Playa del Rey community of the City of Los Angeles.

The South Bay Bike Trail stretches nearly 22 miles between Will Rogers State Beach and Torrance County Beach, with most of the path running along public beaches. The project involved the reconstruction of the existing bike trail, including the construction of deep base to stabilize the path and new concrete pavement, and the installation of new striping and pavement markings. The total cost of the project was $431,243, with funding coming from Proposition C Local Return Funds.

It is important that the bike paths on our beaches are safe, said Supervisor Knabe. These improvements will enhance the safety and increase enjoyment of the numerous residents and visitors who use the South Bay Bike Trail.

County Will Renovate Four Fire Stations And One Lifeguard Station In The Fourth District

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the first phase of a project that will renovate fire and lifeguard stations throughout the County, Supervisor Don Knabe announced today. Renovations are needed in over 90 of the County’s fire and lifeguard stations to meet code requirements and give female employees privacy when sleeping, dressing, and changing.

Twelve facilities will be renovated in Phase 1 of the program, with five coming from the Fourth District. The renovation work includes the construction of new restroom layouts that will provide private toilets and shower areas, the installation of partitions in the sleeping quarters, and the creation of private changing areas. The total project budget for Phase 1 is $5 million, and is scheduled to be completed within 18 months. The funding for the project is coming from the Fire Protection District.

The right to privacy is absolutely critical for each and every one of our County firefighters and lifeguards, said Supervisor Knabe. This project will ensure that our fire and lifeguard stations are modern and account for the growing number of female personnel that the County employs.

Fourth District Fire and Lifeguard Stations in Phase 1

– Fire Station 17 – 12006 Hadley Street in Whittier

– Fire Station 49 – 13820 La Mirada Avenue in La Mirada

– Fire Station 56 – 12 Crest Road in Rolling Hills

– Fire Station 96 – 10630 Mills Avenue in Whittier

– M.B. Lifeguard Station – 2600 Strand in Manhattan Beach

Knabe Dedicates New Fitness Center At Carolyn Rosas Park In Rowland Heights

Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe will be on hand to dedicate the new Carolyn Rosas Fitness Center in Rowland Heights on Monday, March 10, 2008 at 4:00 pm.

The $2.3 million, 2,500 square foot addition will provide much needed space to support the park’s current programs. In addition, the new Fitness Center will allow the Department of Parks and Recreation to offer new programs at the park including: martial arts, wrestling, hula dancing, diet and exercise classes, yoga, badminton and Tai Chi. The new facility also includes additional office space and a new kitchen and snack area for the park.

In an effort to include the input of community residents in the planning of the new center, the Rowland Heights Coordinating Council held several community meetings during the process to keep the residents informed about the project. Many of the new programs to be offered at the park were requested by the Rowland Heights community.

This project is about making a reinvestment in our community, said Supervisor Knabe. The new Carolyn Rosas Fitness Center will not only increase the quality of life for the residents of Rowland Heights, but also the residents of the surrounding cities and communities that utilize this park.

Knabe Sewage Spill Reporting Reforms Yields Widespread Improvements

The successful reporting of sewage spills across Los Angeles County has skyrocketed in the past year, due to widespread reforms initiated by Supervisor Don Knabe in January 2007. The findings come in a newly-released report by the Los Angeles County Auditor-Controller and reveal that since Supervisor Knabe’s call for reforms last year, there has been a dramatic increase in the reporting of sewage spills to the County Public Health Officer.

The report shows that records of sewage spills increased 2,900%, from 26 in 2006 to 773 in 2007. It was also noted that the reporting of sewage spills of 1,000 gallons or greater increased 645%, from 11 in 2006 to 82 in 2007. In fact, the reporting of sewage spills during the calendar year 2007 exceeded the combined total of all sewage spills reported during the previous five years combined. During that period from 2002 to 2006, the County received only 87 sewage spill reports, compared to 773 for all of 2007.

These new findings were the result of an investigation and reforms called for by Supervisor Knabe last year after a number of large sewage spills along the Santa Monica Bay. The investigation led to an initial report last year that revealed massive failures in the reporting process of sewage spills and the ways in which the public is notified about those spills. The initial report found that since January 2002, over 11.6 million gallons of raw sewage had been spilled from wastewater treatment systems throughout the Santa Monica Bay Watershed in 208 separate sewage spills.

Of those spills, over 90% were never properly recorded by health officials, nor were records kept as to what was done to protect the safety and health of the public impacted by the spills.

The follow-up report released today by the Auditor-Controller was also the result of Knabe’s direction last year that a review of the new reforms needed to be made one year later to determine if the new protocols were working properly.

The results of last year’s investigation revealed numerous breakdowns in the communication system at every level of government and also turned up evidence of hundreds of sewage spills throughout the watershed since January 2002 that show no evidence of ever being recorded. The investigation was limited to sewage spills of 1,000 gallons or greater that occurred within the Santa Monica Bay Watershed from January 2002 through July 2006. The investigation revealed 208 sewage spills, totaling 11,606,986 gallons of raw sewage, within that area and time frame. Among the findings of the investigation were:

– Records did not exist for 189 of the 208 sewage spills or 90.8% of the spills that occurred in the past four and a half years. No records were ever found that the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health Environmental Health Program was ever notified or kept records of sewage spills by local wastewater agencies after they occurred. Additionally, these 189 spills have no record of cleanup efforts or efforts to notify the public of the health risk.

– Of the 19 spills that there are records for, they account for only 1.8 million gallons of the 11.6 million gallons spilled in the Watershed since January 2002. There are no records as to whatever happened to the other 9.78 million gallons of raw sewage spilled during that period, where it all went or what cleanup efforts were performed.

– The investigation revealed numerous failed communication protocols between local wastewater operators and public health crews within the County, including lack of understanding at the local level as to which agencies must be contacted immediately after a spill and lack of clear policies within the County about contacting first responders after normal business hours.

– The investigation also revealed that rules governing proper operation of sewage systems were vague and could result in improper operation of wastewater equipment.

As a result of the January 2007 investigation, Supervisor Knabe unveiled a number of reforms to immediately address and reform the sewage spill reporting process, as well as the impact of the public health and health of the environment these inactions may have caused. The newly-released follow-up report reveals that the County has successfully implemented 15 of the 16 recommendations and reforms, with the one remaining reform currently in progress.

Among the reforms was the successful passage of Assembly Bill 800, authored by Torrance Assemblyman Ted Lieu and sponsored by the Board of Supervisors. The new law requires that any entity responsible for a sewage spill now has the duty to report it to the local public health officer and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. In addition, fines will be imposed to any sewage treatment official who fails to promptly report a spill.

The results of this follow-up investigation are very positive, said Supervisor Knabe. It shows that there has been a dramatic increase in the communication between the operators of sewage treatment systems and the public health officials who are tasked with responding to sewage spills and ultimately keeping the public safe.

While there is a vast difference in the number of spills that are being reported now versus how many spills were going unreported before, we least now have a successful way to track spills and penalize those who don’t respond quickly. By having accurate information and records, we can respond quicker to these spills. In the end, that will hopefully lead to the most important goal of all: keeping the public safe and minimizing the harmful effects of sewage spills on our waterways, beaches, environment, and oceans.

Construction Set To Begin On Dockweiler State Beach Youth Center

Construction of the Dockweiler State Beach Youth Center, located at the end of Imperial Highway and Vista del Mar, is scheduled to begin January 28, 2008 with anticipated completion in April 2009.

The $6.2 million project is jointly funded by County of Los Angeles Prop A and State of California Prop. 12 bond funds. This project will provide a youth activity center at Dockweiler State Beach and will serve as the southern headquarters for the Los Angeles County W.A.T.E.R. (Water Awareness, Training, Education and Recreation) youth education program offering aquatic sports camps.

The 8,800 square foot building will consist of multi-purpose meeting and training facilities, administrative space, indoor storage facilities, restroom and locker facilities and storage for beach equipment.

Knabe Provides $2.5 Million For The Renovation And Expansion Of The San Pedro Service Center

A man who owes over $100,000 in child support payments and is also one of the 10 Most Wanted child support payment evaders wanted by Los Angeles County has been located and arrested through a pilot program introduced by Supervisor Don Knabe last year.

Kenneth John was arrested Friday morning in the driveway of his San Fernando Valley home and booked at the LAPD Van Nuys station because of an outstanding warrant and an outstanding child support balance of $112,369.71. John has a current support obligation is $481 per month; he was also ordered by the court to make payments of $119 per month toward the liquidation of his arrears. He last made a payment in 2002.

There has been a warrant outstanding for John’s arrest since October 2003. The warrant was issued for his failure to surrender to the Sheriff to serve 60 days in jail as ordered by the court. In addition to the 60 day sentence, John is also facing an additional 120 day suspended sentence.

John was successfully tracked down and arrested by two specialized agents working with the Los Angeles County Child Support Services Department. Funding for the agents and their pilot program was initiated by Supervisor Knabe in April 2007. Knabe’s motion sought to crackdown on hundreds of the County’s most heinous child support payment evaders by establishing a partnership between the Los Angeles County Child Support Services Department (CSSD) and the Office of the District Attorney.

CSSD goes to great lengths to pursue collection of child support payments on behalf of families in need, and always seeks to establish cooperative relationships with the parent required to make payments. Unfortunately, there are hundreds of parents currently in the County’s system who also go to great lengths to evade their child support obligations, even after arrest warrants have been issued for their arrest.

There are approximately 2,000 parents who fall into this category, and they owe over $2.5 million in child support payments. Before Supervisor Knabe secured $500,000 to launch the current program, CSSD did not have the means to proactively serve these warrants and seek out these parents. Under this new partnership with the District Attorney, CSSD is utilizing District Attorney Investigators to pursue these 2,000 parents.

Far too many families are struggling to pay their bills because people like Mr. John are choosing to evade or ignore their responsibilities, said Supervisor Knabe. I am very pleased to hear of the success our program is having in tracking down these uncooperative parents and getting them to pay their child support obligations.

The County of Los Angeles Department Of Parks And Recreation Kicks Off The 2008 Junior Golf Program

The County of Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation has launched its Junior Golf Program. The Junior Golf Program will offer free golf lessons to youth ages 4 – 18 at a total of twelve participating Los Angeles County golf courses.

Celebrating its sixth year of introducing youth to the game of golf, the County of Los Angeles Junior Golf Program offers youth an opportunity to practice and learn the game of golf from professional instructors.

Each one-week Junior Golf session will take place every day from 3:45 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The County of Los Angeles Junior Golf Program will offer free lessons at the locations and dates below. Junior Golfers can enroll by calling the listed contacts.

Diamond Bar Golf Course

22751 East Golden Springs Drive

Diamond Bar, CA 91765

January 21-25 and January 28-February 1

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

Knollwood Golf Course

12040 Balboa Boulevard

Granada Hills, CA 91344

February 4-8 and February 11-15

Contact: Tim Smith

(626) 254-8533

La Mirada Golf Course

15501 East Alicante Road.

La Mirada, CA 90638

February 18-22 and 25-29

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

Altadena Golf Course

1456 East Mendocino Street

Altadena, CA 91001

March 10-14 and 17-21

Contact: Tim Smith

(626) 254-8533

Chester Washington Golf Course

1930 West 120th Street

Los Angeles, CA 90047

March 17-21 and 24-28

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

El Cariso Golf Course

13100 Eldridge Street

Sylmar, CA 91342

April 7-11 and 14-18

Contact: Tim Smith

(626) 254-8533

Victoria Golf Course

405 South Santa Anita Ave.

Arcadia, CA 91006

April 21-25 and April 28-May 2

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

Santa Anita Golf Course

405 South Santa Anita Ave.

Arcadia, CA 91006

May 5-9 and 12-16

Contact: Tim Smith

(626) 254-8533

Lakewood Golf Course

3101 East Carson Street

Lakewood, CA 90712

May 12-16 and 19-23

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

Alondra Golf Course

16400 South Prairie Ave.

Lawndale, CA 90260

June 2-6 and 16-20

Contact: Mike McMonegal

(626) 821-4648

Mountain Meadows Golf Course

1875 Fairplex Drive

Pomona, CA 91768

June 9-13 and 16-20

Contact: Tim Smith

(626) 254-8533

Los Angeles County Waives Park Fees For Veterans, Military Personnel And Their Families

In honor of Veterans Day, admission fees for the County Arboreta and Botanical Gardens are being waived as well as vehicle entrance fees to regional park facilities from November 9 through November 16, 2007. The motion, introduced by Supervisor Don Knabe, was unanimously approved today by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

As Veterans Day approaches, it is important that we recognize the many contributions that Veterans have made for our great County over the years, said Supervisor Knabe. We owe them many freedoms that we have today and they truly deserve the honor and respect of their fellow Americans.

All Veterans, military personnel and their immediate families are invited to visit the following Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation facilities from November 9 through November 16, 2007:

Frank G. Bonelli Regional Park

120 Via Verde Drive

San Dimas

(909) 599-8411

Castaic Lake Recreation Area

32132 Castaic Lake Drive


(661) 257-4050

Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area

4100 North La Cienega Boulevard

Los Angeles

(323) 298-3660

Santa Fe Dam Regional Park

15501 East Arrow Highway


(626) 334-1065

Schabarum Park

17250 East Colima Road

Rowland Heights

(626) 854-5560

Whittier Narrows Regional Recreation Area

750 South Santa Anita Avenue

South El Monte

(626) 575-5526

Arboretum of Los Angeles County

301 North Baldwin Avenue


(626) 821-3212

Descanso Gardens

1418 Descanso Drive

La Canada Flintridge

(818) 952-4400

South Coast Botanic Garden

26300 Crenshaw Boulevard

Palos Verdes Peninsula

(310) 544-6815

Virginia Robinson Gardens

(310) 276-5367

By appointment only

Buckboard Day Festival Returns To Rowland Heights

The 37th Annual Buckboard Day Family Festival is coming back to Rowland Heights Park on Saturday, October 20, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The popular event is sponsored by Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe and the County of Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation.

In addition to live music, this year’s Festival will also include a Jr. High School Battle of the Bands, Buffalo Soldiers, Hay Rides, a Petting Zoo, and much more. Food and beverages are also available for sale during the Festival. The theme this year is, "Creating Community Through People.

Non-profit organizations from throughout the community are invited to participate by sponsoring an information, craft, food, or game booth. There is no charge for participating, but space is limited so be sure to reserve yours today.

Rowland Heights Park is located at 1500 South Banida Avenue in Rowland Heights. For additional information call (626) 912-6774.

County Provides Free Used Oil Recycling Centers

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works has teamed up with Corporate Sponsors Jiffy Lube, Kragen Auto Parts, and KFWB News Radio to educate Do-It-Yourself auto mechanics about the importance of recycling Used Motor oil and oil filters. In addition to the education campaign, Public Works and its co-sponsors are providing KFWB Team Blue free used motor oil and oil filter recycling collections events throughout Los Angeles County.

Team Blue used motor oil collection events will be available at participating Kragen Auto Parts Stores. Early arriving participants bringing used motor oil and oil filters to Team Blue events at Kragen Auto Parts will receive gift certificates, Kragen T-shirts, free oil filters, or other prizes while supplies last.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Used Oil Management Program, used motor oil is insoluble, persistent and can contain toxic chemicals and heavy metals. It’s slow to degrade, and it sticks to everything from beach sand to bird feathers. Used oil is a major source of oil contamination of waterways and can result in pollution of drinking water sources.

Public Works urges recyclers to take advantage of this program. Funding for this education campaign has been provided by the California Integrated Waste Management Board. The following is a list of Kragen Auto Parts store locations and event dates. All events will occur between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.

Kragen Auto Parts

10/19 Long Beach – 5151 Atlantic Avenue

10/20 La Crescenta – 2605 Foothill Boulevard

10/22 Alhambra – 800 East Valley Boulevard

10/24 Alta Dena – 737 East Altadena Drive

10/29 Arcadia – 37 Las Tunas Drive

11/3 Hacienda Heights – 15840 East Gale Avenue

11/10 Pasadena – 1860 East Colorado Boulevard

11/17 San Gabriel – 965 East Las Tunas Drive

11/24 Burbank – 677 North Victoria Boulevard

11/25 Torrance – 4900 190th Street