Garcetti promotes LA while in Texas

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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti talks about solutions for his city at the UCLA Anderson Forecast Economic Outlook: Solutions for Our City at the JW Marriott Hotel at L.A. Live on April 2, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision for UCLA Anderson/AP Images)

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti talks about solutions for his city at the UCLA Anderson Forecast Economic Outlook: Solutions for Our City at the JW Marriott Hotel at L.A. Live on April 2, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision for UCLA Anderson/AP Images)

LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Mayor Eric Garcetti said today he touted Los Angeles as a leader in attracting federal dollars for infrastructure projects while in Dallas at the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Garcetti said more than $3.5 billion in federal funds have been authorized for Los Angeles in the past six months. He said Los Angeles only started receiving federal assistance after the approval of a half-cent sales tax for transit projects.

“I think the lesson is whether it is Dallas or here or Denver, you can’t go to the federal government with an empty hat. You need to have that hat at least half filled and then maybe you can ask them to top it off,” Garcetti told Video News West.

Garcetti, who spoke to VNW at a media briefing on plans for a bridge- demolition project near Los Angeles International Airport, said the city still needs federal funds for other projects, including an effort to bring mass transit directly to LAX.

While at the conference last week, Garcetti said mayors in a transportation committee unanimously supported his resolution urging Congress to provide funds to cities to rebuild infrastructure.

“Everybody is looking to L.A. When I was there (in Dallas), I can’t tell you how many mayors came to us and said, ‘How are you getting it done?”‘ Garcetti said.

Los Angeles is not just a big city, but is becoming a “great city once again,” he said.

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