• Earl Jefferson

Rick Thomas Sets Up Exploratory Committee, Planning Run to Replace Failed Terms of Joe Buscaino

Updated: Oct 16, 2019

The questions and lack of answers seems to have come to an end. "I'm just as frustrated as you," says Caitlin Muldoon, Harbor Gateway South Joe Buscaino rep when discussing the illegal dumping in Council District 15.

Um, no Caitlin we are not frustrated, we are pissed.

Pissed at the lack of services provided to the residents in Council District 15 represented or should we say are misrepresented by Joe Buscaino.

"I'm just as frustrated as you." That's the answer we in the community get," said Rick Thomas. If you ask Joe Buscaino or anyone on his staff what they are doing to resolve the issue of illegal dumping "The only thing you hear from Joe Buscaino are crickets," said Rick Thomas.

"This is why I am seriously considering a run to replace him as I see Joe Buscaino as a failed Councilmember."

Rick Thomas notes some successes that he believes will help his effort to replace Joe Buscaino. There are as follows:

1- Drop in 311 graffiti requests from more than 10 per week down to pretty much zero.

2- Drop in 311 illegal dumping requests from close to 30 per week to lower than 10 per week.

3 - Noticeable efforts from property owners to remodel and keep clean their properties.

"My campaign will focus on two main issues," says Rick Thomas. "They being a 'Clean Streets, Safe Streets,' campaign where we will vigorously enforce all laws and regulations where our streets in Council District 15 are constantly being cleaned and our streets are safe from crime and a focus on the increase in homelessness in our area," said Rick Thomas.

"There are streets in Council District 15 that don't even have weekly street cleaning," said Rick Thomas. "How Joe Buscaino can let that happen with no effort to get these streets cleaned regularly is immoral."

Rick Thomas (right) and Dean Spanos, Owner of Los Angeles Chargers at Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, CA

Rick Thomas has been a constant critic of Joe Buscaino. Especially after an anonymous email was sent to him with two documents detailing the diversion of $40,000 budgeted for the Gang Alternatives Program to spaghetti dinners in San Pedro. Rick Thomas is preparing several complaints for investigation to the FBI field office in Westwood and the Department of Justice in Washington for review of this movement of $40,000 from a kids program to a personal event hosted by Joe Buscaino.

"If not illegal, certainly immoral, unethical and simply corrupt," said Rick Thomas. "For Joe Buscaino to take money from a program created to stop kids from joining gangs, to help parents who don't want their kids to join gangs, how incredibly stupid for Joe Buscaino to take that money."

Rick Thomas notes that the Boys & Girls Club at Del Amo and Denker closed down in June because of the lack of funding. The building is shuttered with no timetable to re-open if ever to re-open.

"$40,000 would have gone a long way to keep the Boys & Girls Club open but Joe Buscaino would rather buy spaghetti," said Rick Thomas. "This is another example of why I want to replace Joe Buscaino because this misuse of funds cannot continue."

More to come on this blog.

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