Yesterday a press release went out announcing that the new “Countywide Gang and Violence Reduction Strategy” plan, which was supposed to have been delivered to the LA County Board of Supervisors today, is being sent back to the drawing board for another month. According to one of the Sups who’s seen the damned thing, the plan is “too vague”—hence the delay.
Too vague? Right. And what fabulously specific strategy do the Supervisors imagine this new report will outline that has not already been covered by:
1. Connie Rice’s half-million dollar, LA-City-Council-ordered Advancement Project Gang Activity Reduction Strategy report?
2. Mayor Villaraigosa’s Gang Reduction Strategy report?
3. Laura Chick’s half-million dollar “Blueprint for a Comprehensive Citywide Anti-Gang
But like it or not, it appears we’ll have said plan in another month (which likely means it’ll be more expensive. Those report-making folks don’t come cheap).
In case you’re curious, the stated purpose of the forthcoming LA County report is to suggest a “holistic method of combating gang violence, bringing together a host of county departments to suppress violence while simultaneously attacking its causes.”
The report in its draft form says little about the specifics of this “holistic method,” however we do know that it intends to ask for $500,000 to pay “consultants” who will provide “technical assistance” during a proposed six-month “planning phase.”
Report. Consult. Plan. Rinse. Repeat.
In fairness, Chief Bratton, Sheriff Baca, City Gang Czar Jeff Carr, LAUSD Superintendent David Brewer and others have signed on for the ride with this report in some kind of desperate attempt to get something going that addresses the gang problem from a community-wide public health perspective, as opposed to leaving everything to law enforcement, and a scattered group of prevention/intervention programs that have no coherent form of uber coordination.
But just to make sure we’re all on the same happy page here, let’s review what has thus far been put into motion with the other three plans, all of which have similar agendas:
Do any plans mention sealing the borders and sending illegal immigrants home? Could a “holistic” approach means “plugging the holes” in our imaginary border fence? If I write a plan on gangs, will someone pay me a lot of money?
Instead of calling these gang plans, they should call them gang planks. The pirates have taken over and it’s time to jump ship.
Good Lord Jesus. Here–I’ll give them a plan:
A) Invest in after school programs, tutoring, and mentoring for middle schoolers.
B) Invest *heavily* in youth corps programs and other job training initiatives.
C) Create alternative high school re-entry programs for those who dropped out, with pathways to community colleges.
There. That will get them started. And I wrote it for free!
I found a supplemental source of revenue for gang intervention.
If gas hits an average of $4 a gallon this year – not an unrealistic possibility considering that fuel prices rose to an average of $3.63 on Monday – (California) state and local governments could collect nearly $5 billion in sales tax on gasoline.
What do you people do with all that money? There should be something left over.