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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Coalition Submits Application for Federal Grant that Would Help South LA

A group led by the LA Trade-Technical college submitted an application for President Obama’s “Promise Zone” program.

A coalition led by a South Los Angeles college submitted a key application Thursday for the “Promise Zone” initiative that would give South L.A.  priority in federal funding for anti-poverty programs.

“This project brings together everybody with a very common purpose which is … the economic revitalization of this area through increased opportunities,” said Leticia Barajas, Vice President of the L.A. Trade-Technical College.

The program, created by President Obama in 2013, named five Los Angeles neighborhoods as “promise zones” in 2014. South L.A. was left out, to the disappointment of the Los Angeles City Council and community members.

The coalition hopes to become a designated area for federal help because the poverty rate in the region is close to 50 percent and the unemployment rate is 12 percent.

The college-led coalition formed a group called the South Los Angeles Transit Empowerment Zone (SLATE-Z).

The SLATE-Z group would invest in transit centers, educational programs, businesses, and South L.A. redevelopment.

The City Council and L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who represents the area, support the application.

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