May 23, 2014
Empower LA Newsletter header

General Manager's Update 


I hope this newsletter finds you well. The Neighborhood Council elections came to a big end on the westside Sunday with over 1000 people voting in 2 Neighborhood Councils: Venice (1542) and Mar Vista (1135). Westwood had 663 voters and SoRo had 520 and the region almost hit 5000 voters for the day! BIG thanks to our elections team, our partner the City Clerk, our election volunteers and our Neighborhood Councils for their hard work this election cycle. Because of them, we had over 25,000 people voting citywide, a nearly 29% increase from 2012! Congratulations to Hollywood United Neighborhood Council for having the highest increase (774%) in the number of their election voters. They'll be getting a visit from Mayor Garcetti for winning his challenge. We'll now start our post elections survey after report to see what worked and what we would like to work better for 2016. Expect to see a survey and an in person meeting to debrief your election experience soon.


City Council approved the Fiscal Year 2014-2015 budget this week. We really appreciate their work along with that of the Mayor's Budget and Innovation Team, CAO and CLA. Neighborhood Councils maintained their $37,000 yearly allocation, and the Department received 3 unfunded positions for policy and outreach. In order to fill those positions, the Department will use any of our current fiscal year funds to fund them. For the first time, the Department will also have the opportunity to request (with City Council approval) any unspent Neighborhood Council funds, too. These funds typically revert back to the General Fund so I am happy we will have a chance to keep them to continue supporting the Neighborhood Council system. I would prefer, however, that Neighborhood Councils spend down their funds per their strategic plan so if your Neighborhood Council is having difficulty doing that under our current policies and procedures, please contact me directly at or by calling (213) 978-1551 so I can see what the delay is. The last deadline for the Purchase Card is on June 13th so please plan accordingly.


On Tuesday, I had the treat of speaking about Neighborhood Councils and their increasing influence in the City at a panel for the Tarzana Property Owners Association. It was especially neat because the rest of the panelists were Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, City Attorney Mike Feuer and Controller Ron Galperin, all good friends of Neighborhood Councils. Check out the Citywatch article by Denyse Selesnick on the event.


Thanks again for all that you do for your community. Have a great Memorial Day weekend! Please remember our office is closed on Monday in observance of the holiday.




Grayce Liu,

General Manager

Department of Neighborhood Empowerment 


Empower Yourself.

Empower Your Community.

Empower LA.


Mayors from across CA
support effort to expand 
California Film & Television production tax credit program

In a call for action to support job retention and creation in one of California's signature industries, the mayors from California's largest cities - Los Angeles, Sacramento, Long Beach, San Francisco, Fresno, San Diego, Bakersfield, Santa Ana, Oakland and San Jose - today signed a letter backing legislation that will expand and improve California's film and television production tax credit...


 >>> continue reading 

Elections: By the Numbers

We had a wonderful 2014 Elections journey, and we've seen countless examples of Neighborhood Councils going the extra mile along the way. The EmpowerLA Elections Team is thankful for such great partners-from Boardmembers, to new candidates, to volunteers and staff members-who made it happen. We think the numbers speak for themselves...


 >>> continue reading 

Elections Star Volunteers!


It's hard to believe the 2014 Neighborhood Council Elections journey has come to a close. There is a lot to look back on and many successes along the way to celebrate as we welcome new Board members to their leadership positions. But before Neighborhood Councils get back to business as usual, we want to pause and thank our over 600 volunteers who made the Elections process possible...


 >>> continue reading 

EmpowerLA- Outreach Superstars

We've been adding up and processing all the data that we garnered during this year's election season, and the numbers are looking great!  Citywide, the voter turnout increased 29% compared to our 2012 elections, and we know that it was because of the great outreach strategies Neighborhood Councils were using around town.  We hope that these featured Outreach Superstars will give Neighborhood Councils more ideas on how to bring stakeholders to the polls...


 >>> continue reading 

Call for Volunteer Docents:
Join Las Angelitas

Are you interested in being a docent for one of our city's most important historical landmarks? Now you have the opportunity to become an Angelita. The Angelitas are a wonderful group of individuals who provide tours and interact with individuals from all over the world visiting El Pueblo. Las Angelitas del Pueblo will be hosting a series of training classes starting on June 7. Classes will be held...


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Westlake NC Founder
Featured in LA Times

Westlake Founder Bertha Wooldridge Featured in LA Times as Local Hero We always knew that Neighborhood Council folks were fantastic and dedicated to making a difference in their communities. We saw it over these past three months at the polling places during the 2014 Elections, and in the months before that as Neighborhood Councils quietly went about their business as the face of civic engagement...


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North Figueroa Bike Lanes
Face an Uncertain Future


The dedicated bicycle lanes proposed for North Figueroa Street, part of the unanimously approved 2010 Los Angeles City Bike Plan, now face public review prompted by concerns expressed by City Councilmember Gilbert Cedillo and some community members. More than 350 people crowded the Nightingale Middle School auditorium on May 8, as the public comment segment stirred heated debate among proponents and...


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Town Hall with
Los Angeles City Attorney
Mike Feuer

Last year more than two hundred South LA residents came out to meet with the newly elected Los Angeles City Attorney, Mike Feuer to discuss how to keep our communities safe. On June 4th, the City Attorney is coming back to our community, and we have an opportunity to engage him on how we can work with his office to bring about change in our neighborhoods. Join us to learn about his new initiatives...


 >>> continue reading 

Board of Neighborhood Commissioners Meeting 

At our monthly City Hall meeting on May 19th, the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners discussed several key issues: the 2014 Empower LA Awards, the policy to address "bad behavior" by neighborhood council members, and neighborhood council elections. Nominations Open for 2014 Empower LA Awards Our Ad-Hoc Outreach Committee Chair, Commissioner Joy Atkinson, reported on the 2014 Empower LA Awards....


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National Public Works Week

Since 1960, the American Public Works Association (APWA) has sponsored National Public Works Week. Across North America, organizations across the US and Canada use this week to energize and educate the public on the importance of the contribution of public works to their daily lives: planning, building, managing and operating the heart of our local communities and building the quality of life. This...


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Join Your Neighbors at the
Soro Community Festival 2014

The 17th Annual SoRo (South Robertson) Community Festival will take place on Sunday, June 1, 2014 from 11 am to 4 pm. The Festival is located on South Robertson Boulevard, between Cattaraugus and Beverlywood St. (just north of Hamilton High School and the 10 Freeway). Free street parking is also available. Free and open to the public, the SoRo Festival features a live music stage, tree adoption, and...


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What Moves You to Vote?
Increasing Voter Engagement
at the Municipal Level

During the 2013 Mayoral city elections, voter turnout in the City of Los Angeles was only 20.8 percent in the March primary election and 23.3 percent in the May runoff election; approximately 11.1 percent of the total population of the entire City of Los Angeles decided the elected leadership of the City. If you were involved in your Neighborhood Council elections, you already know how important...


 >>> continue reading 

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Neighborhood Council Parking Passes


Memorial Day

Mon, May 26


Board of Neighborhood Commissioners Meeting


Tues, Jun 3

Time:  6 pm- 9:30 pm

El Sereno Senior Center

4818 Klamath Place

Los Angeles, 90032


Harbor Alliance of Neighborhood Council Meetings


Wed, Jun 4 
Time:  6:30 pm - 8: 30 pm

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

Neighborhood Council- LADWP Memorandum of Understanding Oversight Committee Meeting

Sat, Jun 7
Time:  8:45 am - 10:00 am 

Hollywood Constituent Center
6501 Fountain Ave
Los Angeles, 90028

Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Coalition Meeting

Sat, Jun 7
Time: 10 am - 1 pm

Hollywood Constituent Center
6501 Fountain Ave
Los Angeles 90028


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Phone: (213) 978-1551
Fax: (213) 978-1751

Our Address:
200 North Spring Street
20th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90012