News & Events
This article appeared in the August 9, 2017 issue of the Los Angeles Times.
This year marks their 50th year of roasting coffee in the Los Angeles area, not an insignificant milestone in a town that sees trends come and go faster than you can Instagram a charcoal latte. From their earliest days, the Gaviñas have served all of L.A.; indeed, their story is as L.A. as they come.
To read the entire article, click here.
Vernon, Calif. (August 16, 2017) - On Tuesday, August 15, 2017, the city's new Director of Public Works Daniel Wall was administered his oath of office by City Clerk Maria E. Ayala at Vernon's City Council meeting at City Hall. At their August 1, 2017, meeting, Vernon City Council members unanimously approved the city administrator's recommendation to hire Daniel Wall as a permanent replacement for the Interim Public Works Director Kevin Wilson.
Mr. Wall officially began his assignment at Vernon on Monday and public works staff members were introduced to the new executive at a special departmental lunch. "Daniel has already hit the ground running," said City Administrator Carlos Fandino. "We're excited to have him on board. He'll be working closely with the current interim director to allow for a seamless transition into his role." He will oversee a diverse workforce responsible for community development and maintenance of public infrastructure.
Daniel Wall most recently served as the director of parks and public works for the city of San Marino. Prior to his executive positions, Mr. Wall served as an assistant director of public works for Whittier and a city engineer for San Fernando. His breadth of knowledge is derived from a background that includes over 10 years of public sector management experience.
Mr. Wall, a registered civil engineer and a licensed real estate broker, earned a bachelor's of science degree in civil engineering from California State University, Northridge and a master's of business administration from the University of Southern California.
The City of Vernon helped the residents at Vernon Village Park Apartments kick off the first days of summer with a special 'Chat with the City Administrator' event. The event, which took place on Tuesday, June 20, gave residents a chance to voice their concerns with top City staff, including City Administrator Carlos Fandino, and get connected to resources such as jobs information and voter registration.
"This is a great opportunity to get to know our residents," explained Fandino. "Vernon Village is our newest community and we want to make sure they feel connected with the City as a whole."
The event was designed after the successful nationwide 'Coffee with a Cop' campaign and gave residents an opportunity to gather informally with City staff to raise concerns, ask for help or just get to know the City's employees. Staff from all City departments and members of the City Council turned out to flip burgers, paint faces, play catch as well as provide valuable sidewalk CPR demonstrations to adults and children.
Before the event concluded, Vernon Police K9, Doby, greeted children and Vernon firefighters gave them a tour of the fire truck – allowing them to try on the uniform. The 'Chat with the City Administrator' event was the first of what the City hopes will be a series of community events this summer.
JOIN TOMORROW'S MEETING VIA LIVE WEBCAST: You can view the presentation via a live stream starting at 6:30pm at www.tinyurl.com/MetroWSAB
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is formally initiating environmental studies for the West Santa Ana Branch (WSAB) Transit Corridor, a new 20-mile light rail transit line that would connect downtown Los Angeles to southeast LA County, serving the cities and communities of Arts District, Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, unincorporated Florence-Graham community of LA County, Vernon, Huntington Park, Bell, Cudahy, South Gate, Downey, Paramount, Bellflower, Cerritos and Artesia.
Public scoping meetings are an important step in the preparation of a Draft Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report (EIS/EIR) in accordance with federal/state requirements. Join us to learn more about this project and provide your input on the proposed alternatives. Please plan on attending the scoping meeting that is most convenient for you. Content provided at these meetings will be identical. Presentations start 30 minutes after the indicated start time, followed by public comments. Those unable to attend the meetings can view the presentation via a live stream starting at 6:30pm on Tuesday, June 20, 2017, at www.tinyurl.com/MetroWSAB.
Thursday, June 15, 2017, 6 - 8pm
T. Mayne Thompson Park
14001 S Bellflower Bl, Bellflower, CA 90706
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
3 - 5pm (businesses) & 6 - 8pm (general public)
Nishi Hongwanji Buddhist Temple
815 E 1st St, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tuesday, June 20, 2017, 6 - 8pm
South Gate Girls Club House
4940 Southern Av, South Gate, CA 90280
> Live Webcast at 6:30pm
Saturday, June 24, 2017, 10am - 12pm
Huntington Park Community Center
6925 Salt Lake Av, Huntington Park, CA 90255
*Those unable to attend the meetings can view the presentation via a live stream starting at 6:30pm on Tuesday, June 20, 2017, at www.tinyurl.com/MetroWSAB.
California ISO Issues Statewide Flex Alert Due to Heat Wave
The California Independent System Operator Corporation (ISO) has issued a statewide Flex Alert, a call for voluntary electricity conservation from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20, and Wednesday, June 21.
Consumers are urged to conserve electricity especially during the late afternoon when air conditioners typically are at peak use. Consumers can help avoid power outages by turning off all unnecessary lights, using major appliances before 2 p.m. and after 9 p.m., and setting air conditioners to 78 degrees or higher.
During times of high temperatures, demand on the power grid can be strained, as air conditioner use increases. The forecast peak usage for Tuesday and Wednesday is expected to exceed 47,000 megawatts each day in California ISO's service territory, which serves roughly 80 percent of electricity customers.
For more electricity conservation tips, visit the ISO's Flex Alert website at http://www.flexalert.org/save-energy.
• Set thermostat at 78° or higher and turn off, if away
• Cool with fans and draw drapes
• Turn off unnecessary lights and appliances
• Use major appliances in morning or late evening
Learn more: http://www.flexalert.org (Available in Spanish and Vietnamese)
A Flex Alert is issued by the ISO when the electricity grid is under stress because of generation or transmission outages, or from persistent hot temperatures.
Consumers are urged to voluntarily conserve electricity to help avoid more serious steps to protect the power grid, including local rotating outages.
Click here to learn more about Flex Alerts and Stage Electrical Emergencies.
Flex Alerts are part of an educational alert program that informs consumers about how and when to conserve electricity. Media funding by Southern California Gas Company and authorized by the California Public Utilities Commission.
IEA's Vernon Workshop Series Continues:
South Coast AQMD Air Quality Regs – What You Need to Know About Compliance and Enforcement
Overview Understanding AQMD rules and your permit is essential to compliance. Good compliance practices go a long way during an inspection and when faced with potential enforcement actions. Topics for this meeting include:
• AQMD Updates (Exide and Farmer John)
• Recent Rule Development
• Permit Monitoring and Recordkeeping
• Compliance Tips
• AQMD Inspections and Enforcement
New Chief of Police will replace retiring Chief Daniel Calleros
Vernon, Calif. (June 12, 2017) - On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, the Vernon City Council unanimously approved the City Administrator's recommendation to hire Irwindale Chief of Police Anthony Miranda to replace retiring Vernon Chief of Police Daniel Calleros.
"As a City, we have made impressive strides in recent years with more than 170 reforms. Retiring Chief Calleros has been a major contributor to our success and has set the bar high," explained City Administrator Carlos Fandino. "With a successful track history of accountability and reform, we are confident that Chief Miranda is the right person to build upon the Vernon Police Department's record of success."
"It's an honor to become a part of the exceptional public safety tradition at the Vernon Police Department. I spent 22 years in the Southeast Los Angeles area and I am excited to return," said Chief Miranda.
He continued, "My philosophy is 'the best way to predict the future is to create the future' and I look forward to the challenge of upholding the Vernon Police Department and the City of Vernon as a leader in the Southeast Los Angeles area."
With more than 25 years of public law enforcement experience, Chief Miranda currently serves as the Chief of Police for the City of Irwindale; a position he has held for three and a half years.
Chief Miranda's career includes an impressive record of achieving successful results in law enforcement management. Under his leadership as the Chief of Police in the City of Irwindale and Acting Chief of Police for the City of Bell, Chief Miranda set a new standard for professional community-based law enforcement services and has led changes that have resulted in both Departments elevating their status as well-respected, professional law enforcement organizations.
Chief Miranda has been successful in building community relationships through his outreach efforts with residents and businesses within the neighborhoods he has served, as well as on a regional basis through charitable fundraising efforts involving law enforcement agencies throughout the County of Los Angeles. In 2015, he founded the Pink Patch Project, a grassroots awareness project that blossomed into a national charitable organization which raises awareness for breast cancer. Last month, Miranda became the newest Board Member for Pacific Clinics, the largest behavioral and healthcare agency in Southern California. He is highly regarded by his peers in the law enforcement community and a recognized leader in the regional Police Chiefs Association.
Chief Miranda holds a Bachelor's Degree in Human Services, is nearing completion of his Master's degree in Public Administration, and holds both Management and Executive certifications from the California Commission on Police Officers Standards and Training.
We invite the community to join us as Chief Miranda is sworn-in as the City's next Chief of Police at the City Council Meeting of June 20, 2017.
The City of Vernon was founded in 1905 to create jobs in California. Vernon's 1,800 businesses create more than 105,000 jobs in the Los Angeles area – including 55,000 jobs within the city's 5.2-mile boundary. The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation designated Vernon as California's 'Most Business Friendly City.' Vernon generates more than $330 million in state income and sales taxes, $1.1 billion in taxable spending. Vernon's businesses provide more than 4.4 billion is salaries and wages annually for workers in Los Angeles County. For more information, go to www.cityofvernon.org.
Vernon Fire Department Raises $25,000 in Spirited Three-Day
'Fill the Boot' Campaign
Vernon, Calif. (June 5, 2017) – The City of Vernon's Fire Department joined thousands of firefighters across the nation in the time-honored tradition of the 'Fill the Boot' campaign - a fundraising initiative to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. In the spirit of the fundraiser, Vernon firefighters hit the streets asking pedestrians, motorists and other passersby to make a donation to MDA.
"The 'Fill the Boot' campaign has been an honored tradition for over sixty years where firefighters come together as a community to raise money to find a cure for muscular dystrophy," said Vernon Fire Chief Bruce English.
More than 40 Vernon firefighters volunteered for fundraising shifts on their free time raising more than $25,000 in just three days at fundraising stations on Soto and Bandini Blvd., Downey and Bandini Blvd. and Vernon and Santa Fe Avenues.
"As firefighters we feel it is very important to give back to the community so every year we donate our own time to "Fill the Boot" to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association," explained Vernon Firefighter Jason Rosa.
He continued, "In addition to this, several of our members also attend the annual MDA Summer Camp as counselors for the day just to help ensure the kids have a memorable experience. We are honored and humbled to continue this long-standing IAFF tradition as a way to help fund research and send these children to a camp where they can forget their worries for a while and just be kids."
This is the 9th year the Vernon Fire Department participated. In total, the department has raised close to $300,000 and have sent over 320 children to MDA camps across Southern California. SHAPE \* MERGEFORMAT SHAPE \* MERGEFORMAT SHAPE \* MERGEFORMAT For more information on the Vernon Fire Department, visit www.cityofvernon.org.
Vernon was founded in 1905 to create jobs in California. Vernon's 1,800 businesses create more than 105,000 jobs in the Los Angeles area – including 55,000 jobs within the city's 5.2-mile boundary. The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation designated Vernon as California's 'Most Business Friendly City.' Vernon generates more than $330 million in state income and sales taxes, $1.1 billion in taxable spending. Vernon's businesses provide more than 4.4 billion is salaries and wages annually for workers in Los Angeles County. For more information, go to www.cityofvernon.org.
This editorial originally appeared in the Vernon Sun published on May 25, 2017.
Vernon: A Changed City
By: Carlos Fandino, Jr., Vernon City Administrator
Listening to and responding to residents is one of the hallmarks of good government and creating connections that make that happen has the been the focus for the City of Vernon over the past five years. That's why we wanted to follow-up to last week's article, "Vernon Outreach: Work In Progress," and provide a more complete picture of how the City of Vernon touches the lives of its residents every day.
First, ensuring that Vernon residents are heard at the ballot box is one of the City Council's top priorities. Over the last two years, the City has held voter registration events at Vernon Village Apartments and the Sabor de Lindo Mexico celebration. The City has gone door-to-door to drop off mailers, speak with residents and has added new ballot drop-off locations to make voting more convenient. We've held community meetings and public meetings in the evening to ensure the public has a chance to be heard. It's notable that the City of Vernon voter participation is nearing 50% in each of the last three elections.
Second, the City has answered a regional need and made affordable housing more accessible. From Vernon Village Apartments to the City-owned single family residences sprinkled throughout the City, nearly all of Vernon's housing is subsidized - giving residents the opportunity to rent high-quality homes in communities that boast one of the lowest crime rates in Southeast Los Angeles. Our housing lottery system ensures that everyone has equal opportunity and since the City is built out, we invest a million dollars a year in building libraries, parks and community centers in neighboring communities to serve our residents as well as our neighbors.
Third, the City of Vernon is also reaching out to our residents on a personal level. City staff volunteer at Vernon City Elementary School providing presentations on everything from engineering to groundwater supplies to Earth Day. Police officers walk through the school and communities multiple times a day to connect with residents and business owners. They deliver turkey dinners to nearly a quarter of the residents who have been identified as low income while firefighters hold fundraisers and blood drives. It's our hope that through these everyday, casual encounters we can connect with the community, proactively address concerns as well as encourage the City's people to get involved.
Finally, we continue to impact our residents and the region through jobs. The City has a growing economy with nationally and internationally recognized brands including Amazon, Whole Foods, Seven-Up/RC Bottling Company as well as up-and-coming green companies like Romeo Power. Thanks to Vernon's business friendly atmosphere, these companies contribute more than 50,000 jobs and $4.4 Billion in wages annually to Los Angeles County.
Our goal is to grow jobs and grow our community.
The City of Vernon is changing and we invite our businesses and residents to get involved. We've expanded our communication efforts and invite you to join us on Tuesday, June 20th at the first of three community events planned at Vernon Village. The event will include presentations on City services and, more importantly, provide an opportunity for neighbors to get to know each other. Join us at Vernon Village or follow us on social media. Give us your feedback, ideas and, along with your elected representatives, help guide the change.
And don't worry, we won't forget the food and coffee!
Residents and Businesses Partner to Divert 5 Tons of Electronic Waste From Landfills In a Single Day
Vernon, Calif. (May 24, 2017) - The City of Vernon Health Department and Arion Global, Inc. partnered with area residents and businesses for the 10th Annual e-Waste Recycling Event yesterday. The one-day event drew truckloads of old, broken or unused electronic waste. In just four hours, the one-day event diverted more than five tons of electronic waste from landfills.
"It's really important to recycle electronic waste because electronics have chemicals that can leach into the soil and pollute groundwater and the environment," explained the City's Health Director, Keith Allen.
He continued, "Events like these allow us to partner with our businesses and residents to preserve our precious natural resources. We are very fortunate to be a part of a great community that understands the importance of recycling"
In total, more than 15 pallets of electronic waste including: 14 televisions, 22 fax machines, four full-sized copy machines, 50 printers, 57 computers, 43 monitors, over 400 fluorescent light bulbs and much more. The free event was part of the City's ongoing 'Green Vernon' initiative. Under the 'Green Vernon' initiative, the City has committed to stimulating green development within the City and establishing a series of programs to enhance environmental sustainability and support economic vitality, while protecting the health of its residents and workers and the residents in surrounding communities. To learn more about 'Green Vernon,' visit www.cityofvernon.org
SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) urges all Californians to eliminate standing water around their homes and businesses to help reduce mosquito populations in an effort to prevent Zika and West Nile virus infections.
"As the rainy season comes to an end and temperatures rise, we will see increased mosquito activity," said CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith. "Residents should dump out containers that hold standing water in and around their homes and businesses. Removing water will help reduce overall mosquito numbers and protect family members and neighbors from mosquito bites and mosquito-borne diseases."
Mosquitoes breed in very small amounts of water. To help keep their numbers down, Californians should frequently check for, and eliminate, water-filled containers, clean and scrub bird baths and pet watering dishes, and dump water from dishes under potted plants. Residents are also urged to report unusual numbers of mosquitoes or day-biting mosquitoes to the local vector control agency.
With mosquito activity increasing, Californians should also protect themselves from mosquito bites at home and while traveling to areas where the Zika virus is present. To prevent bites, consistently use mosquito repellent when outside, wear long sleeves and pants, use air conditioning, and make sure window screens will keep mosquitoes out of the home.
"It is particularly important for pregnant women and couples planning to become pregnant to prevent mosquito bites because Zika virus can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, and severe birth defects if a pregnant woman becomes infected," said Dr. Smith.
Zika virus is spread primarily through mosquito bites and can also be transmitted by both men and women during sex. Most people who are infected with Zika virus do not experience any symptoms but should take precautions to avoid sexual transmission, even if they never had symptoms. Zika symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes.
All individuals, particularly women of childbearing age, should take steps to protect themselves against mosquito bites while traveling and when they return home. Sexually active people who travel to areas with Zika virus transmission should use condoms or other barriers to avoid getting or passing Zika virus during sex. There has been no local transmission of Zika in California to date, but the mosquitoes that can carry Zika virus live in many areas of California.
West Nile virus (WNV) is also transmitted to humans and animals by the bite of an infected mosquito. WNV can cause a deadly infection in humans, and the elderly are particularly susceptible. WNV symptoms may include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash on the chest, stomach, and back. More severe symptoms, and even death, can occur. The state's first human infection of WNV this year was reported last month.
Visit the CDPH website for more information about mosquitoes, Zika and West Nile. Additional mosquito prevention information is available at www.cdc.gov
New construction projects will begin under Proposition 84 Grant
Vernon, Calif. (May 4, 2017) - The City of Vernon will participate in a regional effort to reduce stormwater pollution in Los Angeles County waterways. Under Proposition 84, forty-three (43) Low Impact Development (LID) treatment systems will be installed throughout eleven (11) cities in the Los Angeles River, San Gabriel River, and Los Cerritos Channel watersheds.
The City will install two (2) tree box filter systems along Vernon Avenue near Soto Street and Seville Avenue. These transportation corridors are known to have high concentrations of metals. The tree box filters are mini bio-retention areas that capture and treat pollutants through plant and soil media, and then discharge clean water to the storm drain. The tree box filters aim to improve the quality and health of street trees by providing larger areas for roots to stabilize the tree and more availability of water and nutrients. Additionally, the filters can delay the peak flow and improve the overall quality of water entering the Los Angeles River.
Construction of these systems is scheduled to be complete in June 2017.
Vernon, CA (April 19, 2017) – Members of the Vernon City Council certified the City's 2017 Municipal Election results and selected a new mayor on Tuesday.
Honorable Melissa A. Ybarra was selected as Mayor by a 3-to-2 vote of the five-member Vernon City Council while Honorable Yvette Woodruff-Perez was re-elected as Mayor Pro Tempore. Ybarra was re-elected to the City Council after running unopposed in the City's 2017 Municipal Election on April 11th. Ybarra is the daughter of the Honorable Michael A. Ybarra, a former Vernon City Councilmember who died in office in September 2014. Since 2014, Mayor Ybarra served the remainder of her late father's unexpired term. This marks her first official five-year term in office and the City of Vernon's first female mayor.
Mayor Ybarra is the granddaughter of Vernon Mayor Pro Tempore Thomas A. Ybarra who served on the city council for 43-years and great niece of former Vernon Councilmember Esteban Peralta who served on the council for 15-years in the 1930s. Honorable Yvette Woodruff-Perez, Vernon city councilmember, was re-elected by a unanimous vote of the five-member city council to continue her role as mayor pro tempore. Elected to the Vernon City Council in April of 2015, Mayor Pro Tempore Woodruff –Perez is serving a five-year term. Her election to the city's five-member council established the first-ever female council majority as well as the first-ever Latina majority in the City of Vernon's 109-year history.
Mayor Pro Tempore Woodruff-Perez is an ICU Nurse and Public Health Nurse, with certifications in Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support, and Pediatric Advanced Life Support. For over a decade, she has worked in Public Safety Communications as an Emergency Medical Dispatcher and 911 Operator.
For more City of Vernon election information, go to: www.cityofvernon.org/elections
Vernon, CA (April 17, 2017) – Election Officials from the City of Vernon revealed final results for the City's 2017 Municipal Election on Monday afternoon in a public canvass. After tallying the final votes, Vernon's registered voters re-elected Councilmember Melissa Ybarra and rejected ballot Measure Q.
In her first bid for re-election to the Vernon City Council, Councilmember Ybarra earned 39 'yes' votes of 41 canvassed. Ybarra, who ran unopposed for the second time, is the daughter of the Honorable Michael A. Ybarra, a former Vernon City Councilmember who died in office in September 2014. Since 2014, Councilmember Ybarra served the remainder of her late father's unexpired term. This will mark her first official five-year term in office.
Councilmember Ybarra is the granddaughter of Vernon Mayor Pro Tempore Thomas A. Ybarra who served on the city council for 43-years and great niece of former Vernon Councilmember Esteban Peralta who served on the council for 15-years in the 1930s.
Meanwhile, ballot Measure Q was rejected with a final vote of 23 votes in opposition to the ballot measure compared to 14 votes for it. Measure Q is a utility user tax measure that would have raised an estimated $11 million in general fund revenues to enable city officials to halt the practice of transferring millions of dollars annually from the Vernon Gas & Electric utility enterprise fund to support the city's budgeted costs for public safety and other essential services.
The final election results for the April 11 Municipal Election are expected to be certified by a vote of city council members at their regularly scheduled meeting in City Council Chambers on Tuesday, April 18.
For more City of Vernon election information, go to: www.cityofvernon.org/elections
Councilmember Ybarra maintains commanding lead in unofficial election results; Measure Q results remain tight
Vernon, CA (April 12, 2017) – Elections officials for the City of Vernon have unveiled
preliminary results for the City's 2017 Municipal Election with Vernon's registered voters
deciding in favor of Councilmember Melissa Ybarra and narrowly rejecting ballot Measure
In her first bid for re-election to the Vernon City Council, Councilmember Ybarra earned
24 'yes' votes of 26 canvassed on Tuesday night. Ybarra, who ran unopposed for the
second time, is the daughter of the Honorable Michael A. Ybarra, a former Vernon City
Councilmember who died in office in September 2014. Since 2014, Councilmember
Ybarra served the remainder of her late father's unexpired term. This will mark her first
official five-year term in office.
Councilmember Ybarra is the granddaughter of Vernon Mayor Pro Tempore Thomas A.
Ybarra who served on the city council for 43-years and great niece of former Vernon
Councilmember Esteban Peralta who served on the council for 15-years in the 1930s.
Meanwhile, ballot Measure Q was narrowly rejected with an unofficial final vote count of
12 votes in opposition to the ballot measure compared to 10 votes in favor of it. Measure
Q is a utility user tax measure that, if approved by voters, would raise an estimated $11
million in general fund revenues to enable city officials to halt the practice of transferring
millions of dollars annually from the Vernon Gas & Electric utility enterprise fund to support
the city's budgeted costs for public safety and other essential services.
Vernon City Clerk Maria E. Ayala said 26 ballots were canvassed and counted out of a
total of 43 ballots submitted by voters in the mail-in ballot election. Vernon has 86
As of 8:00 pm when the polls in Vernon closed, 15 ballots submitted at Vernon's two
polling locations remain to be canvassed pending voter signature verification by the Los
Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk.
A final canvass of the 15 remaining ballots and any additional ballots postmarked by
Election Day is scheduled for Monday, April 17. The final election results for the April 11
Vernon Municipal Election are expected to be certified by a vote of city council members
at their regularly scheduled meeting in City Council Chambers on Tuesday, April 18.
For more City of Vernon election information, go to: cityofvernon.org/elections
# # #
Vernon was founded in 1905 to create jobs in California. Vernon's 1,800 businesses
create more than 105,000 jobs in the Los Angeles area – including 55,000 jobs within the
city's 5.2-mile boundary. The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation
designated Vernon as California's 'Most Business Friendly City.' Vernon generates more
than $330 million in state income and sales taxes, $1.1 billion in taxable spending.
Vernon's businesses provide more than 4.4 billion is salaries and wages annually for
workers in Los Angeles County. For more information, go to www.cityofvernon.org.
Vernon, CA – Vernon Mayor William "Bill" Davis and members of the Vernon City Council
today expressed their profound sadness and deepest condolences to the family of John
Van de Kamp upon learning of his passing yesterday.
John Van de Kamp most recently served as Vernon's Independent Special Counsel. He
issued his 12th twice-yearly assessment of the city's good governance policies and
practices on January 31.
Mayor Davis said, "It is with our deepest regard and respect that we mourn the passing
of John Van de Kamp, a man who began as our trusted good governance advisor and,
over time, became a dear friend to the people of Vernon and its vibrant business
community. We send our condolences to Mr. Van de Kamp's family and friends in their
moment of sorrow. We join them in saluting Mr. Van de Kamp's memory and legacy of
good works in Vernon, Los Angeles County and the State of California."
Mayor Pro Tem Yvette Woodruff-Perez said, "I am saddened by the news of John Van
de Kamp's passing. He came to Vernon at a time of great challenge for our city. He
advised our Council with great respect for the changes we would undertake and stood by
us as we fulfilled our pledges to implement good governance reform measures. John Van
de Kamp will be missed here in Vernon. The work he performed as our advisor will never
Council Member Luz Martinez said, "I celebrate John Van de Kamp's life and work. He
came to Vernon to provide advice and counsel at a most difficult time in our city's history.
His work, recommendations and encouragement enabled Vernon to travel on a path to
reform and to never stray from that path of good governance. We owe Mr. Van de Kamp
a debt of gratitude for his commitment to our city and its leadership. We send our prayers
to his family and friends in this time of mourning."
Council Member Melissa Ybarra said, "We honor John Van de Kamp memory on this day
and express or deepest sadness to his family and friends. Mr. Van de Kamp advised my
late father Council Member Michael A. Ybarra during the height of Vernon's reform
process, and he advised me in the same fashion as my father's successor on the Vernon
City Council. He was always resolute in his advice: Do what is right. Do your work in an
open and transparent manner. Stay on the path of good governance and ethics. We have
done that thanks, in large part, to John Van de Kamp's work with our city. I will continue
to honor Mr. Van de Kamp's advice to me."
Council Member Leticia Lopez said, "The City of Vernon that exists today is grounded on
a framework of ethics and good governance because John Van de Kamp agreed to come
to our city to serve as our independent advisor, reform monitor and special counsel. The
people of our city and business community should be forever grateful to Mr. Van de
Kamp's for his special contribution to the City of Vernon. He was, in no small measure, a
major contributor to our city's survival. We are saddened by his passing. We honor his
work and memory. I send my deepest condolences to his family and friends. We have all
lost a very good man who personified the term: public servant."
Vernon City Administrator Carlos Fandino said, "This is a very sad day in the City of
Vernon. John Van de Kamp was a close and trusted advisor to me when I became our
city's administrator in March 2016. The recommendations Mr. Van de Kamp provided to
our city helped make Vernon stronger. We are a model city in Southeast L.A. County
because Mr. Van de Kamp cared enough to help guide us through one of the toughest
times in our city's history."
Former California Attorney General and L.A. County District Attorney John Van de
Kamp was retained to serve as Vernon's Independent Ethics Advisor in February 2011
at the height of the city's battle to defeat a state legislative measure to disincorporate
The good governance reform process that city leaders pledged to implement as a result
of AB 46, led city leaders to expand Mr. Van de Kamp's role to that of Independent
Reform Monitor. A further evolution of Mr. Van de Kamp's role led him to named
Vernon's Independent Special Counsel in 2015. During his tenure advising Vernon City
officials, Mr. Van de Kamp saw more than 150 good governance reform measures
approved by the city.
Join your Vernon neighbors for a casual meet and
greet about neighborhood services and
public safety, plus an educational presentation on
Measure Q, the good governance reform measure
on the city's ballot in the upcoming Tuesday,
April 11 Municipal Election.....
When: Wednesday. March 15, 2017
Time: 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Place: Vernon Fire Station #76
3375 Fruitland Avenue, Vernon, California 90058
John Van de Kamp issues January 2017 Independent Special Counsel Report, concludes ‘Vernon is no longer an outlier city.’
February 13, 2017
Vernon, CA – John Van de Kamp, Vernon's Independent Special Counsel, has issued his 12th biannual assessment of the city's good governance policies and practices.
Mr. Van de Kamp, in his 32-page January 2017 Independent Special Counsel Report, concluded, "Vernon is no longer an outlier City. It is helping other Cities through its CommUNITY grant program. It came to Huntington Park's aid [last year] by hosting [the] Sabor de Mexico Lindo Downtown Festival."
Mr. Van de Kamp's report highlighted the city's positive economic progress, citing Vernon's recent year-over-year surge in private sector building activity – noted by an estimated $122 million in building construction value in 2016 compared to $76 million in 2015.
"Vernon is free of scandals," Mr. Van de Kamp wrote in summation. "Boring, yes – perhaps. But not so boring as it addresses the issues that confront it as an industrial city, and the issues that most public entities are also facing. The good news is that Vernon has identified them and is attempting to deal with them without losing its special nature," he wrote.
To read Mr. Van de Kamp's January 31, 2017 Independent Special Counsel Report, click here.