Valley Interfaith Upsets Pharr Election, Community Wins Big
Las Milpas, TX - A culture of disrespect towards Las Milpas residents had become so pervasive that when Valley Interfaith leaders sought funding for a local library last year, the Mayor declared: " is not a Whataburger where you pull up and give your orders....use the school library." The disrespect extended to leaving streets unpaved in the colonia over two decades and turning a blind eye to the 4-hour bus commutes of UT-RGV college students as they trudged on foot over a mile to the nearest stop. Rather than let the City's response deter them, leaders used the disdain to fuel a 7-month electoral brawl including a Get Out The Vote strategy that ultimately replaced the Mayor and deposed dismissive officials.
Valley Interfaith leaders Eddie Anaya, Claudia Garcia, Monse Martinez, and Mauro Hernandez launched a campaign to change the power structure in Pharr, starting with meetings held in homes and at churches. Says Anaya, "We knew, with Valley Interfaith, there was only one way to do this."Read more
One LA Begins to Tackle Transit, LA County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
One LA leaders are leading efforts around construction of transit lines and the creation of affordable housing around new transit hubs. Leaders hosted a stakeholders gathering in collaboration with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, drawing over 150 members of One LA congregations, schools, non-profits, unions and public and private entities. Soon after, leaders from ten One LA institutions attended the monthly Metro Board Meeting to welcome the new Metro CEO, Philip Washington, and to present their Opportunity Agenda of jobs, housing, and transit improvements. Metro, also known as the MTA, has a huge opportunity in 2016 to move each of those interests forward. One LA looks forward to being part of the conversation around a potential 2016 ballot measure.
Together Baton Rouge Challenges Transit System's Slow Pace
"The people in the communities of Baton Rouge and Baker who are frustrated know what they voted for, they know what CATS promised to deliver, and they're not really seeing it," said Edgar Cage, a leader with Together Baton Rouge, the nonprofit that campaigned for the tax through churches and other institutions across the parish.
Before the tax passed, CATS leadership worked with Together Baton Rouge to develop a list of incremental deadlines they promised to meet as they built toward an end goal of a thoroughly transformed system by the first quarter of 2014...."Read more