first_imgThe Big Cash Drag Races took place down at the Airport Drag Strip.  Picture: Amber DavyRacers line up in the pits to wait their turn to compete in the Drag Race. Picture: Amber DavyThe riders in the Motorcycle Toy Run leave the parking lot of the Northwood Hotel to make their way down to Taylor.                                                       Picture: Amber Davy- Advertisement –Before heading down to Taylor, the motorcyclists make an appearance at the Drag Races, hoping to raise more money for the Fort St. John Hospital Foundation. Picture: Amber Davylast_img read more


first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE‘Mame,’ ‘Hello, Dolly!’ composer Jerry Herman dies at 88 “He explained what he felt the problem was and how we can all be part of the solution. I just wish we had held this meeting earlier to avoid problems.” Villaraigosa acknowledged that he had erred in not meeting with the officials sooner and said he plans to hold regular sessions with them in the future. “We agreed on a lot of issues – we are passionate about our kids,” Villaraigosa said, adding that the other officials did not support his plan to take over the district. “But there was unanimity that we need an audit and that we should play a role in determining the scope of that audit.” Although the meeting did not include leaders of all 27 cities that send children to LAUSD schools, Villaraigosa said the officials represented a majority of LAUSD students who live outside the Los Angeles city limits. All the officials said they believe the first step to any reform is an independent performance and financial audit of the LAUSD – although not necessarily performed by city Controller Laura Chick, who has been at odds with school officials over her call to conduct such a review. “I think what Controller Chick and I want is some kind of independent audit of the district, whether it is conducted by her or someone else,” Villaraigosa said. “We all feel that an audit is the only way to identify what the problems are and what issues we have to deal with.” Superintendent Roy Romer said he will invite the mayors to be briefed by him on what the district is doing now – with two separate independent audits under way to review the district’s financial operation and administrative staffing – as well as implementing recommendations from a third audit released this year. “I don’t want us to duplicate anything that is already being done and I think there is room for some input from the mayors if they feel we are falling short in what our audits are proposing,” Romer said. “I think we need to do more to build understanding and transparency with what we are doing and what we have done.” In addition, Bell Councilman George Cole said such an audit could help in developing a plan to decentralize the district to deal with the unique issues, such as the southeast cities that long have been upset with the district and its operations. “We want to be able to play a role in the education of our children,” Cole said. “We think this is a positive first step to getting toward that.” Rick Orlov, (213) 978-0390 rick.orlov@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Reaching out to disaffected leaders of neighboring cities, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Thursday won support for his basic call to reform the Los Angeles Unified School District, starting with an independent financial and performance audit of the school system. But the officials stopped short of endorsing his takeover bid. After a two-hour closed-door meeting at Los Angeles City Hall, even officials who had been the most critical of Villaraigosa’s efforts to take control of the district agreed that change is needed. “The mayor answered all our concerns,” said West Hollywood Councilman Jeff Prang, among the first to question Villaraigosa’s plans. Prang also pushed a resolution by officials from several cities served by the LAUSD that voiced concern over the mayor’s efforts. last_img read more