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Save Beyond Baroque!

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One of L.A.'s most unique and important centers for poetry, literature, and art, the non-profit center Beyond Baroque, may be in danger of losing its lease. According to an email sent out by the group's Board of Trustees, City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo would like to begin the auction process for the building, offering it up for other non-profits to bid on. City Councilman Bill Rosendahl had promised to extend Beyond Baroque's lease for another 25 years, but this new move by Delgadillo threatens to ruin the whole deal for the literary non-profit. As the website states, this "uncertainty is threatening grants, programming and our entire future."

A hearing is scheduled tonight to decide whether or not to continue extending the lease on this beautiful, historic building. What can you do to help?

Please send an e-mail to City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, Councilman.Rosendahl@lacity.org, to thank him for supporting the 25-year lease renewal for Beyond Baroque and to let him know that you support him in his battle to keep Beyond Baroque in its rightful home. IMPORTANT! Be sure to cc: the City Attorney (Rocky.Delgadillo@lacity.org) on your e-mail. Large numbers of e-mails WILL get their attention. It does not have to be a long e-mail. You can personalize it by adding a few words about what Beyond Baroque means to you as a resident of Los Angeles.
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Full text of the email below the jump.

Dear Everyone:

Here's the 411 on the situation.

After years of hard work on the part of Fred Dewey and others
advocating for Beyond Baroque, City Councilman Bill Rosendahl agreed
at the end of fall 2007 to extend Beyond Baroque's lease of the
building at 681 Venice Blvd. for another 25 years. We on the Board of
Trustees went off into the holidays relieved that the issue had
finally been resolved and that Beyond Baroque's homestead was secure.

I was stunned to learn last night that last week, Councilman
Rosendahl was informed by City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo's office
that the City Attorney wants to put the lease to 681 Venice Blvd. up
for an auction process for other non-profits to bid on. This despite
the facts that:

1) It is generally up to the City Councilman of a given council
district to determine how city property assets are parsed out for
public use;

2) 681 Venice Blvd. has been Beyond Baroque's home for nearly 40
years;

3) Beyond Baroque's staff and supporters have put their time, money,
and talents into not only keeping up and improving the building and
its facilities, but also into beautifying its landscape.

This new snag may be Mr. Delgadillo's way of playing politics with
Councilman Rosendahl, but he has ordered a hearing to decide the
matter NEXT TUESDAY. That's right. Rocky gives us until Tuesday,
February 19, to do something about this.

We need to take action NOW.

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Please send an e-mail to City Councilman Bill Rosendahl
(Councilman.Rosendahl@lacity.org) to thank him for supporting the 25-
year lease renewal for Beyond Baroque and to let him know that you
support him in his battle to keep Beyond Baroque in its rightful
home. IMPORTANT! Be sure to cc: the City Attorney
(Rocky.Delgadillo@lacity.org) on your e-mail. Large numbers of e-
mails WILL get their attention. It does not have to be a long e-mail.
You can personalize it by adding a few words about what Beyond
Baroque means to you as a resident of Los Angeles.

If you aren't from L.A., please tell them that Beyond Baroque is an
important reason for you to keep coming back to Venice and to Los
Angeles. If you are from out of state or out of the country
altogether, please talk about how you know of Beyond Baroque's
outstanding reputation and why it's important for Los Angeles to
protect and sustain its only literary arts center.

Be polite and supportive so that both parties understand that keeping
Beyond Baroque exactly where it is is a positive move that benefits
everyone.

Do this tonight or tomorrow. The hearing is on Tuesday.

I thank you for taking action.

Much love and in solidarity,

Amélie Frank
Member, Board of Trustees
Beyond Baroque

Photo courtesy of Beyond Baroque's Flickr site.