Jaime De La Vega Out at LADOT

Moments ago, the Mayor’s Office announced that Jaime De La Vega will no longer serve as General Manager of the Department of Transportation. Jon Kirk Mukri, the General Manager for Recreation and Parks will serve as interim General Manager for LADOT while a permanent replacement is sought.

John Kirk Mukri

Things changed at LADOT during De La Vega’s tenure. He took over a department dogged by recent scandals unearthed by Controller Wendy Greuel when he was appointed General Manager by then-Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. For the most part, he helped right the ship. The focus of the Department also slowly changed towards striping more bike lanes, installing safer crosswalks, and putting more bloated roads on a diet. However, his personal style rubbed staff the wrong way leading to an unprecedented “insurrection” at the City Council and during “secret” meetings with Mayor Eric Garcetti.

“I thank Jaime de la Vega for his service to Los Angeles. My agenda for the Department of Transportation is to reduce traffic and improve mobility for all Angelenos by increasing our transit options and making our existing ones more effective,” Mayor Garcetti said.

 Multiple sources in City Hall deny that the Mayor’s decision to relieve De La Vega from command as lost confidence, and to a person everyone we spoke with assured Streetsblog that the city’s direction on transportation projects wouldn’t change during the next 1250 or so days of Mayor Garcetti’s term. If anything, the new General Manager will be more progressive than any previous one, sources claim.

As General Manager of the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, Mukri oversees  more than 15,000 acres of parkland, 10,000 employees, a $165 million operating budget and over $600 million funding for capital projects.

Appointed in February 2004, Mukri has extensive experience as a City of Los Angeles manager. Before joining Recreation and Parks, he served for four years as General Manager of the City of Los Angeles General Services Department, which provides centralized services, including fleet services, asset management, and construction maintenance and purchasing for the City. He also served as Assistant General Manager of General Services for five years.

As for De La Vega, Streetsblog had a good relationship with LADOT and his office both when he was working as Deputy Mayor and LADOT General Manager. We wish him well in future endeavors.

  • justsaying

    Actually, it isn’t…this is a post coming from one of those employees who work in the same building, who knows what actually happened, the exaggerated version of statements that these people made…You said the entire building, and district offices emptied out: Are you crazy? Sounds like another exaggerated misstatement. I work on the same floor, and I should know…most of these people just went not knowing what they were there for. The only thing I can say, is don’t get disappointed when you get what you wish for….the new person maybe just as after those employees who work the bare minimum, sleep and snore while in their cubicles, come in late, and leave late, take long breaks, yes, including 1 1/2 to 2 hour lunch breaks…Yeah, people watch those people, and we know exactly what is going on.
    All I can say is you are as ignorant as most of those people who marched to City Hall. Jaime de la Vega will not stoop to your level…and I think that is what is bugging you people.

  • Mutcd2

    Just saying, why don’t you shut your trap. I work in the building ad well and I can deduce you are an intern or one those ladies that Jaime brought over from Tony’s regime. I won’t stand here and let you bad mouth us with such lies. The venom you spread won’t get you too far. Your more than free to pack your bags and follow your idol out the front doors. The only people who didn’t go were the interns, and the non engineers who work on the 9th floor. A lot of us put in hard days work trying to the best we can given the hostile environment from the 10th floor. Like I said if you don’t know me then don’t say shit you can’t back up, because you come off as pompous, ignorant fool.

  • Anonymous

    If the work life issues of LADOT staff can be ameliorated, I’d be down to support Jaime de la Vega. John Mukri is another Rita Robinson – and we can’t afford to waste two years while the engineers in the LADOT provide an ignorant GM with their crappy “advice” on policy issues and staffing while the mayor’s office dithers with its new appointment.

  • justsaying

    oh we can certainly back it up…There are no lies…you chat all day long about non-work related stuff, surf the internet during work hours (like you are doing now), come and go as you please. if it wasn’t true, why are you acting so upset, defensive and most of all guilty? Btw, I worked for DOT for a number of years now, and have seen it all, so if you don’t want your dirty laundry exposed, I would hush if I were you. Watch out, you maybe one of those who may be packing up once the new GM knows how the 9th floor lacks the discipline it needs to get work done. Oh wait, maybe I should just report all these activities to the City’s Whistleblower Hotline….so, who is Jaime de la Vega still the bad guy here? Certainly not…

  • justsaying

    Btw, that hostile environment you are claiming you been subjected to? Before you make an allegation, look up what it really means…none of you losers have a leg to stand on.

  • Peter


    The only person making exaggerated claims here is you.

    Everyone who went to that meeting knew fully what was going to be presented to the council. If you were actually an employee, as you claim, then you would have knowledge of the internal meetings between staff/union that had previously occurred (on our own time — because you will likely try to make an issue out of that too) as well as received the emails with full details of our action. The fact that you have yet to mention any of this leads me to believe that, if you actually do work for the department at all, you likely sit on the 10th floor. So if you’re not JDLV himself, you’re just some lackey that has his ear.

    Hopefully the new GM, whomever he/she will be, will see fit to clean out all the “yes men” installed by JDLV.

  • hello


    If your allegations are true, what’s stopping you from presenting this information to people in the city that could take steps to address these problems, now or in the past? Why are you suddenly NOW threatening to “bring to light” the misgivings of LADOT when you have withheld in the past?

    Sounds a tad fishy to me…

  • sigh

    FYI, JDL was one of the ones pushing the Emergency response times thing from what I understand. And that involved existing speed humps, not new ones. For speed humps the issue from what I understand is that the funding for them no longer exists. I’m not in any position to do anything with that. As for other bike lane issues you probably have valid points, and I definitely agree that community outreach (on both sides to those for and against bike lanes) is very very lacking.

  • NEPA

    Hahahahahajahahah! Look at all the LADOT sniping at each other about snoring in their cubicles. I want a cushy union job with the city. Get me on the gravy train!

  • Justin Stubbing

    Hostile environment? You mean being told to work rather than lunch for hours / leave early / whine about pay / ignore the public / sneak freeways through neighborhoods

  • Agenda21

    City agency unions are the absolute worst. They are lazy and egotistical an dont give a heck about anything.

  • Anonymous

    One big lesson I’ve learned from anyone talking about “Agenda 21” is that the negative stuff they blame others for are actually the sins of the Agenda 21’r. A great case in point: the above comment made by an egotistical person who doesn’t give a heck about anything.

  • Joe Linton

    It certainly preceded JdlV (I have a very early recollection of John Fisher lying to my face), but when Josef/Ubrayj say “I had never been so boldly lied to by people with fancy certificates in my life” it really rings true to me. There has been so much outright lying to the public (so patronizing, too – a “just shut up and listen to us experts” attitude) from Reseda Blvd bike lanes, bike plan totals, bike lane mileage, bike blog, and more and more. Lying is a departmental culture that really undermines the city’s credibility… and gets my hackles up to work even harder to counter the lies and make the streets safe.


Your Q and A with Jon Kirk Mukri

You asked, he answered. Moments after going on hiatus for the holidays, I received an email from the Los Angeles Department of Transportation with answers from the “Reader Q and A” with interim LADOT General Manager Jon Kirk Mukri. Jon Kirk Mukri took over as interim general manager on December 1, taking over for Jaime […]

New Organization at LADOT Marks the End of an Era

Ladot Re-Organization Memo (2012!02!17) With Org Chart-1 (1) In February, LADOT General Manager Jaime De La Vega announced a small shakeup in the Department, streamlining the organizational flowchart and altering the jobs of some of it’s top brass.  Perhaps the biggest news was the announced retirement of longtime Assistant General Manager John Fisher, who many […]

Insurrection at LADOT

“The rank and file has lost confidence in our general manager,” thundered Mike Hunt, an LADOT engineer and “proud” SEIU Union Steward. “He doesn’t listen to us. He ridicules us every chance he gets. He puts the blame on us for doing our job, and implementing the policies he put forth for us.” Hunt was […]