December 13, 2013
Empower LA Newsletter header

General Manager's Update 


I hope this newsletter finds you well. I hear things are supposed to slow down at the end of the year around the holidays, but that is definitely not the case for us. We're working hard on outreach, budget, elections, funding, policy and just supporting our Neighborhood Councils in their meeting operations. We launched our partnership with Nextdoor yesterday with the support of Mayor Eric Garcetti. We're thrilled with adding another tool for Neighborhood Council's to grow their local outreach. Our next collaboration will be with NationBuilder so look for it next week.


In partnership with the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates, we'll be presenting our FY 2014-2015 proposed budget on Monday, December 16th at 6:30 p.m. in our downtown office. We'll be streaming it online at Ustream, and you'll be able to email or call in your questions. If you'd like to attend in person, please RSVP here.


Candidate filing for Regions 2 elections starts on Monday and Region 1 starts the following Monday. Candidates will be able to file online or in person. We anticipate that City Council will be taking action next week on the proposed change to the stakeholder definition (click here) so we'll be updating all election forms and bylaws accordingly when that happens. On January 10, 2014, the Valley will kick off the election cycle with the Rally in the Valley so be ready to hold on to your hats when the election roller coaster starts!


Big thanks to our funding team for starting their tour around the City to get the signatures of Treasurers and Second Signatories in place for our upcoming checking accounts. It's been like walking through knee high mud with cement shoes on to get this far, and I really appreciate your patience while we continue to push to make this happen. We still anticipate the accounts being opened in January so please make sure your monthly reconciliations are up to date to avoid any further delays.


Last night, I got to take a break to mingle with Neighborhood Council folks at the Vally Alliance of NC's Holiday Mixer. The Neighborhood Councils' awesome work was acknowledged by all the City officials who stopped by: Councilmembers Englander and Krekorian, Controller Ron Galperin, Board of Public Works Commission President Kevin James, Director of Street Services Nazario Sauceda were among those who praised and acknowledged the growing influence of Neighborhood Councils. I really want to thank the VANC Executive Board, led by the amazing Jill Banks Barad, for their efforts in putting together these great events for Neighborhood Council stakeholders and City officials to meet and talk about new ideas for partnerships. 



If you haven't already, please make sure that you take the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners survey on the last 8 points of the Plan Review Committees' recommendations. We hope to wrap up all the updates to the Plan before the end of the fiscal year.


As always, thanks for all that you continue to do to Empower LA. Have a super weekend!




Grayce Liu,

General Manager

Department of Neighborhood Empowerment  


Empower Yourself.

Empower Your Community.

Empower LA.



There's a new neighbor on Today, the Mayor announced that the City of Los Angeles has joined the social network for neighborhoods to keep residents informed about important issues and better connect with the great neighborhoods throughout our city. Mayor Garcetti's back-to-basics agenda focuses on using technology, improved user experience, and increased civic engagement to make...


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Can't go door to door? How about going page to page? Neighborhood Councils embody the value of people who live close together, working together for the common good. Building community is what they do best. Many Neighborhood Councils are taking advantage of technology to take their outreach to a new level and interact with fellow stakeholders online. But what if you want to target just the people...


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We reported on the fascinating world of bees in Los Angeles and the hard work of beekeepers and Neighborhood Council members to legalize urban beekeeping on private property. Sixteen NCs submitted Community Impact Statements (CISs) to the City Council, and their voice is making an impact. When we left off in October, the motion was sitting in the Planning and Land Use Committee. We're happy to update...


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Neighborhood Councils have two opportunities to engage the DWP, first on the DWP MOU Oversight Committee, which is chaired by Tony Wilkinson and met last Saturday, and second on the DWP Advocacy Committee which is chaired by Jack Humphreville. The DWP MOU Committee was joined by Camden Collins of the Ratepayers Advocates office who was joined by Grant Hoag, a new addition to their office who has many...


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LA's streets are full of new bus benches, 5831 to be exact, and 10% are available to Neighborhood Councils that would like to advertise for free. Neighborhood Councils are responsible for the artwork and printing and the free bus benches are offered based on availability, not on specific location requests. If your Neighborhood Council wants to advertise on the bus benches in your community, here...


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The Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils, comprised of the 34 Neighborhood Councils from throughout the San Fernando Valley celebrated another year of powerful civic engagement at the 2013 Holiday Mixer on the backlot of CBS Studios in Studio City. A standing-room-only crowd of Neighborhood Council leaders was welcomed by VANC founder and chair, Jill Banks Barad, who regaled the audience with...

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Do you know of any talented young aspiring filmmakers in your neighborhood? Be sure to tell them about the chance to have their film featured at the 4th annual Los Angeles Student Media Festival. LASMF is the only film festival intended solely for high school students in Southern California. High School students from throughout Los Angeles County are invited to submit their short films by February...


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What is Nextdoor? Nextdoor allows communities to easily create free private websites to facilitate communication among neighbors and build stronger neighborhoods. Nextdoor was created based on the idea that the neighborhood is one of the most important and useful communities in a person's life. Nextdoor's mission is to use technology to help neighbors build stronger and safer neighborhoods. In Los...


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Neighborhood Council Stakeholders can begin filing as candidates for the Neighborhood Councils in the Northwest Valley beginning on Monday, December 16, 2013 for the open board seats in the Granada Hills North, Granada Hills South, North Hills West, Northridge East, Northridge West, and Porter Ranch Neighborhood Councils. (Chatsworth and Northridge South are having Selections) Prospective Candidates...


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Neighborhood Councils each have the opportunity to select vote-by-mail as an outreach strategy for engaging voters, a choice that requires voter verification to be self-affirmation as opposed to documentation. Voters who would like to utilize the vote-by-mail option will find the VBM application online at the respective page for each of the Neighborhood Councils that is having VBM voting. *** In Region...


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You may recall the story about the Winnetka Neighborhood Council and the Metro Orange Line. This caught the attention of KFI-AM640's John and Ken, who invited Winnetka NC President Eric Lewis to explain the unique situation on the air. Have a listen to hear the full story of how the Winnetka Neighborhood Council is working with the Metro to have bathrooms installed at their Orange Line station...


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I hope everyone is doing well and that you are all set for the holiday season. It is no surprise however that as the year slows down, neighborhood councils do not. You are as busy as ever in your meetings, community events, planning activities for your respective neighborhoods during the holidays, working on bylaws and elections, etc. I just want to take the opportunity to thank you for all the incredible...


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There may be some changes in Neighborhood Council policy ahead, but first the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners wants to hear from YOU. If you haven't yet done so, you now have until December at noon to take the online survey and weigh in on 8 pending Neighborhood Council Policy Motions. If adopted by the Commission and followed by City Council action, the motions would affect how Neighborhood...

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The Department of Neighborhood Empowerment is preparing to submit its budget proposals for the 2014/2015 City of Los Angeles Budget, a process of preparation, submission and refinement that spreads throughout the fiscal year. Neighborhood Council stakeholders are invited to participate in person or online in a Department presentation on Monday, December 16, 2013 at 6:30 pm, either in person at City...


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I just completed the LAFD Fire Academy Leadership Program. At first, I was hesitant to do it because of the time commitment and really, just not being that interested in doing it. How wrong I was. This four (4) month strenuous and fantastic Leadership Academy training was the most fulfilling course I have taken since I graduated college 24+ years ago. My class, 13-3, was mostly comprised of LAFD Firefighters... 


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Most of you probably have heard of CERT. Some might even BE CERT. If you live in South Los Angeles, you'll have the chance to become part of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) over seven weeks of training, sponsored by City Council President Herb Wesson. The training will take place from 6:30-9:30pm every Thursday from January 9-February 20 at Iglesia Cristiana Antioquia on 3501 West Adams...


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10 days after your
December NC Board Meeting
November Monthly Expenditure Reports due




Let the Fire Department know what services are most important to you

LA Rec & Parks Community Budget Discussion Input Form/Survey


NC Plan Review #2 - Eight Motions

Let the Commission know your opinion about the final eight NC Plan Review Committee motions



FY 2012-13 Review 

Provide your feedback about how you think we did this past year




Neighborhood Council Parking Passes



PlanCheckNC Holiday Meeting

Sat, Dec. 14

Time 10 am - 12 noon

West LA Municipal Building
1645 Corinth Ave.
 West Los Angeles 90025



Board of Neighborhood Commissioners Regular Meeting
Mon, Dec. 16


Department of Neighborhood Empowerment Budget Presentation

Mon, Dec. 16 
Time 6:30 - 7:30 pm

City Hall, 20th Floor  
200 N. Spring St.  
Los Angeles 90012


Education and Neighborhoods Committee Meeting
Tues, Dec. 17


NC Budget Advocates 
Tues, Dec. 17
Time 7 - 9 pm

City Hall, 20th Floor  
200 N. Spring St.  
Los Angeles 90012


Happy New Year! 
January 1, 2014


NC-DWP Advocacy Committee

Sat, Jan. 4  
Time 8:45 - 10 am

DWP Cafeteria Meeting Room, Level B 
111 N. Hope St. 
Los Angeles 90012 


Sat, Jan. 4  
Time 10 am - 1 pm

DWP Cafeteria Meeting Room, Level B
111 N. Hope St.
Los Angeles 90012

Board of Neighborhood Commissioners Regular Meeting

Tues, Jan. 7
Time 6 - 9 pm

Sherman Oaks Elementary Charter
14755 Greenleaf St. Sherman Oaks 91403


Harbor Alliance of Neighborhood Councils (HANC) Meeting 

Wed, Jan. 8  
Time 6:30 - 8:30 pm

Kaiser Permanente Way Harbor City - Community Outreach Portables 
25965 Normandie Ave. Harbor City 90710


Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils (VANC) Meeting

Thurs, Jan. 9
Time 6:30 - 9:00 pm

Sherman Oaks Hospital,
Doctor's Conference Room
4929 Van Nuys Blvd.
Sherman Oaks 91403



Email City Hall at
Council File
Hot Sheet


Active Council Files that affect Neighborhood Councils citywide, which your Neighborhood Council may want to weigh in on:


Neighborhood Council System:


11-1017-S1 Investigate Allegations of Discrimination and Harassment; Training of NC Board Members

11/19  Education and Neighborhoods Committee  continued to date TBD  


12-1682-S1 New Neighborhood Council Stakeholder Definition

Pending in Education and Neighborhoods Committee  

12-1682 - Neighborhood

Report from E&N Committee;
Approved by City Council 10/1; City Attorney report and draft ordinance issued 12/10
11/19 Education and Neighborhoods Committee continued to date TBD

11/19 Education and
Neighborhoods Committee continued to date TBD; Department report dated 11/19 received

11-1018  Neighborhood Council Grievance Policy and Process
Approved by City Council 12/3; City Attorney to draft ordinance to be effective 7/1/14 

Citywide Issues:

13-1374 Prohibit growth of genetically modified crops within City

Referred to Arts, Parks, Health, Aging, and River



11-0923-S2 Allow Art Murals on Single Family Residences in Council Districts
1, 9, and 14
 City Council approved as amended 12/10; last day for Mayor to act 12/23


13-1513 Increase Number of Cats Allowed Per Residence From Three To Five 

11/19 Personnel and Animal Welfare Committee

continued to date TBD 


13-0025-S1 Rewards for Hit-and-Run Crimes 

Referred to Budget and Finance and Public Safety Committees

12/10 Planning and Land Use Management Committee approved as amended 

08-2020 Sign Ordinance Revision
Proposed ordinance pending in Planning and Land Use Committee; 10/17 Planning Director's and City Attorney's reports received 

13-0046 Consolidation of Planning and Building and Safety Departments, etc.    

Approved by City Council 5/29; Motion to delay consolidation introduced 9/13; Approved by City Council 11/6; Planning and Land Use Committee approved as amended 12/3; 12/11 City Council approved

13-1300-S1  Street Repair and Safety General Obligation Bond Program 

 24 recommendations approved by City Council 8/21; CLA and CAO report approved by Council 9/17; Mayor signed 9/27 


13-0953 Citywide Municipal WiFi Initiative

Approved as amended by City Council 11/5


 13-0941  Sidewalk Repair Adjoining Property Owner  Fee Elimination  

 Public Works and Gang Reduction Committee approved as amended 12/4; referred to Budget and Finance Committee


13-0909  DWP Unlimited
Sick Pay Policy

Referred to Energy and Environment Committee  7/26


13-0650 Removal of Obstructions in the Street or Sidewalk Penalties

Approved by City Council 11/5; signed by Mayor 11/8; ordinance effective 12/16


09-2645 - Cell Tower (AGF) Regulations in Public
Right of Way

Approved as amended by  Planning and Land Use and Public Works and Gang Reduction Committees 10/8; City Attorney requested to prepare ordinance


Five year effort underway; updates at


11-0262 - State Licensed Facilities/Community Care Facilities

12/11 Ad Hoc Committee on Community Care Facilities continued to date TBD 

Review all new 
City Council Files


City Clerk's Referral Memoranda


Search existing 
City Council Files


Council File
Management System

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Los Angeles, CA 90012