Toluca Lake was honored to welcome Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass to Red Maple restaurant on June 22 for the signing of her fourth executive directive, which is aimed at promoting business creation, attraction and growth. With members of the Toluca Lake Chamber of Commerce and Greater Toluca Lake Neighborhood Council in attendance, along with business leaders from across the city and members of the press, Bass expressed her support for the business community and her intent to reduce barriers to their success. The directive creates a committee charged with assessing the City’s business taxes, fees, processes and timelines — many of which have not been reviewed in years — and making recommendations to help businesses, especially small and micro businesses. The move signals that “L.A. is not only open for business; L.A. is ready to advocate for business,” she declared.
City Council President Paul Krekorian, who represents the district that includes Toluca Lake, described how the neighborhood illustrates the vital importance of lifting up local businesses. “As you walk up and down these sidewalks along Riverside Drive, you’ll see that the small businesses of this community not only are the manifestations of someone’s dream, not only are the creator of local jobs, but they really are the foundation of this community,” he said. “They define this neighborhood. We have so many neighborhoods around Los Angeles where the success of our small businesses means the success of our communities.”
Krekorian also pointed out the significance of the event’s location, since Red Maple was formerly a Burbank business but crossed over into L.A.’s jurisdiction when it relocated to Toluca Lake earlier this year — which the audience greeted with a hearty round of applause. In a speech welcoming the assembled guests, Red Maple co-owner Brian Veskosky noted the added meaningfulness of this event occurring at the restaurant during Pride Month and Toluca Lake’s centennial year, and said he and his partner, Jim Orozco, were “ecstatic” to have the restaurant officially join the Toluca Lake community. He thanked the mayor for hearing the concerns of small business owners and taking steps to address them, and for shining a spotlight on Toluca Lake as a place where local businesses can thrive.