City Official Proposes Responsibility Of Sidewalk Repair To Fall On Property Owners

From Sandra Endo:

Crumbled, buckled, cracked sidewalks aren't hard to find throughout Los Angeles.

On Vermont between 5th and 6th streets the tree roots push up the concrete so much it rivals the new Colossus ride say area residents. More than five lawsuits have been filed on that block alone because of trips and falls leading to injuries.

Resident Rudy Coleman says "it's an obstacle course. I've seen people fall, elderly women, handicap people in wheelchairs trying to navigate. It's dangerous."

The city administrative officer, Miguel Santana wants property owners to pay for repairs instead of having the burden on the city.

In 1974, the City took responsibility for repairs since federal money was earmarked for sidewalk safety. Now that pot of money has dried up and the costs are too pricey for the city to shoulder all the repairs.

Santana says property owners should be phased in over the next couple years to assume responsibility for keeping their sidewalks safe.

Resident Jerome Green says "who put the trees there? The city. So they should pay."

The City has to fork over $1.4 billion dollars in repairs because of a settlement with disability advocates.

Lawmakers were set to take up the issue today but the item was pushed back.

Public hearings will take place before any proposal goes for a vote so lawmakers can hear from commercial and residential property owners.