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Crews to repair LA streets amid budget issues

January 7, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Crews are ready to fan out across Los Angeles to repair potholes and other street damage caused by recent storms, but some are concern about whether or not there's enough money and manpower to get the job done. Whether you're driving or on a bike, the top complaint from many people about the streets of Los Angeles is potholes.

"We've been biting the bullet. They should come out here and start fixing these potholes," said Echo Park resident Modesto Lopez. "No more cutbacks. Get the potholes fixed please. It's dangerous."

Some members of the Los Angeles City Council are asking the city's chief administrative officer to work out a plan to lift the furloughs for Bureau of Street Services employees.

In the past month, the city has received more than 3,000 service calls for street repair. Like other departments, street services has had to make deep cuts during the down economy.

"We are furloughing, right now, employees who are specially-funded and when those employees are specially-funded, they're not affecting our general fund. And if that's the concern, we should allow these employees to be off furloughs and do the work that our residents are asking of us," said Councilman Jose Huizar.

The push to prevent further cuts in street services comes on the eve of this weekend's Operation Pothole. The recent heavy rains created thousands of potholes that need to be filled.

"We'll have 50 crews out for two days that will fill 10,000 to 15,000 potholes in Los Angeles," said Councilman Eric Garcetti.

The city has to grapple with a more than $300 million deficit. Budget talks are going on and all the departments are weighing in on what needs to be cut.

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