December 5, 2014
Empower LA Newsletter header
General Manager's Update 


I hope this message finds you well. A few things have popped up that needed to be shared with Neighborhood Council leaders while our newsletter is dark this month.


Late Monthly Expenditure Reports

Thank you to everyone for your patience as we transition over to the checking account. I really appreciate your feedback on how we can improve the system. We will be releasing an updated version of our funding policies and procedures the first week of January that incorporates your suggestions.


The Monthly Expenditure Reports (MER) are key in the continued operations of the checking account system. They provide both your stakeholders and the City auditors the important information of how your Neighborhood Council is spending your yearly allocation of public funds. In addition, the City needs the information on the MER to issue mandated state tax documents in January or else the City incurs large fines.


Your Neighborhood Council should be approving MER's every month for the prior month's expenditures. Once approved, the MER needs to be submitted to the Department within 10 days. Despite our friendly reminders to Neighborhood Councils, we now have over 150 late MERs. Typically, we would freeze funds until the MERs are submitted. I do not, however, want to deprive your community of much needed funding, but I do need all the late MER's to be submitted as soon as possible.


If your Neighborhood Council is currently late in your MER submissions, you will be receiving a letter in the next week, which will offer your Neighborhood Council funding assistance from our Councils for Councils program. Our great mentors will work with your Treasurers to catch up on the MERs by the end of January, 2015. After that, the Department will assign temporary accounting staff services, which will be billed to the Neighborhood Council, to finish the MERs. If by March 1, 2015, a Neighborhood Council is still late with their MER submissions, your funds will be frozen except for basic operational expenses, which will be administered through temporary accounting staff services billed to the Neighborhood Council.


Please help us assist your Neighborhood Council in catching up on any late MERs. Thank you!


Neighborhood Council Event Approvals


If your Neighborhood Council is having a community event in which they are the main sponsor or co-sponsor, please remember to submit an Event Approval Form to our office as soon as possible. To determine whether your Neighborhood Council is a main sponsor or co-sponsor, the test is on who controls the event, i.e. would the event not happen because your Neighborhood Council didn't participate? If your Neighborhood Council doesn't control the event, e.g. tabling/booth at an event, contribute money to get just the name on the outreach flyer, etc. you don't need to fill out the form.


We are receiving forms sometimes a few days before the event, which causes a lot of stress and worry on both sides as we try to make your event happen for you. We'd appreciate 30 days notice whenever possible so that we can make sure that as you plan your event, you obtain all the required permits and liability coverage. Because this is a new requirement, it doesn't matter if you've had the event many times before, we still need to do the review.


We are continuing to streamline this process, and I'm very thankful that Councilmembers Englander and Krekorian for their assistance in this area with their Council File last week.


Upcoming Events

I'm happy to share that we have a new forming citywide Neighborhood Council alliance that will be focusing on sustainability issues. They've asked me to pass on this message for Neighborhood Council leaders to weigh in on Mayor Garcetti's "Sustainable City pLAn."


Neighborhood Council "Sustainable City pLAn" Review


California is experiencing a record drought while climate change has begun to make real, significant impact locally. How do we address the water and climate change crises, while transforming Los Angeles' environment, economy, and equity in the coming decades? Share your ideas.


In partnership with a newly forming Alliance that will be dedicated to engaging Neighborhood Councils on sustainability issues, please join LA's Chief Sustainability Officer, Matt Petersen, to discuss how LA responds to the drought and climate change through the City's first ever "Sustainable City pLAn."


WHAT: Discussion and feedback on LA's draft Sustainable City pLAn
WHEN: Tuesday, December 9, 2014; 1:30 PM-2:30 PM
WHERE: City Hall, 200 N. Spring Street, Conference Room 1035, Los Angeles, CA 90012


SPACE IS LIMITED. RSVP IS REQUIRED, BY SUNDAY, DECEMBER 7. Please send RSVP to Laura Mack: In addition, if you require parking, please email Laura the following information: Name - Vehicle Make and Model - License Plate #. Parking instructions will be sent to you.


Also, Los Angeles Animal Services is having a meeting the evening of Tuesday, December 9th:
Next Tuesday, December 9, 2014, the City of Los Angeles Board of Animal Services Commissioners will hold its meeting in the Community in close vicinity to the City's North Central Animal Shelter. On behalf of Commission President David Zaft, Commission Vice President Alana Yañez and Commissioners Jennifer Brent, Roger Wolfson and myself, Larry Gross, we would like to extend an invitation to attend our meeting at 7:00 PM at the Ramona Hall Community Center (Between Ave 43 & Ave 50, Just West of 110 Freeway), 4580 North Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA 90065.


We encourage community members to attend the meeting and make their concerns regarding animal issues in the City of Los Angeles known directly to officials of the Animal Services Department and Commission. We normally hold our community meetings at the shelter. Unfortunately, the North Central Shelter doesn't currently have a room to facilitate our meeting. But, with the construction of a new shelter in the works, we plan on holding a Commission meeting there soon after the work is completed.


The Department of Animal Services is making significant strides in ensuring the protection and safety of our animals. Euthanasia rates have dropped dramatically in the past two years, we recently passed and began enforcing a mill-bred pet store ban, and we are making progress on many other fronts. But more work is needed to increase adoptions, licensing and enforcement, as well as educating the public on why it is crucial to spay or neuter. We need your help and support on these issues.


The agenda for this meeting will be posted late in the day on December 5, on the Department's website at


Please join us. Attached is a bilingual (English/Spanish) leaflet announcing the meeting. We will have Spanish translation available Help us spread the word by distributing the leaflet to neighbors, friends, Neighborhood Council members and other parties of interest.


Hope to see you next Tuesday evening.


Larry Gross
City of Los Angeles
Board of Animal Services Commission
Email :


Thank you for all that you do for your community and for our City! Happy Holidays!!




Grayce Liu,

General Manager

Department of Neighborhood Empowerment 


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Neighborhood Council Parking Passes


Neighborhood Council - LADWP Memorandum of Understanding Oversight Committee Meeting

Sat, Dec 6
Time: 8:45 am - 10 am

DWP Headquarters
111 N. Hope Street
Los Angeles 90012

Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Coalition Meeting

Sat, Dec 6
Time: 10 am - 1 pm

DWP Headquarters
111 N. Hope Street
Los Angeles 90012

Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils Planning Forum

Thurs, Dec 11
Time: 6:30 pm - 9 pm

CBS Studios
4024 Radford Ave.
Los Angeles 91604

PlanCheckNC Meeting

Sat, Dec 13
Time: 10 am - 1 pm

Hollenbeck Police Station Community Room
2111 E. 1st Street
Los Angeles 90033

Board of Neighborhood Commissioners Regular Meeting

Mon, Dec 15
Time: 1 pm - 4 pm

City Hall
10th Floor Conference Center Rm 1050
200 N. Spring Street
Los Angeles 90012

Education and Neighborhoods Committee Meeting

Tue, Dec 16
TIme: 1 pm - 3 pm

City Hall
10th Floor Conference Center Rm 1010
200 N. Spring St.
Los Angeles 90012

Westside Regional Alliance of Councils Monthly Meeting

Wed, Dec 17
Time: 8:30 am - 10 am

Lenny's Deli
2379 Westwoood Blvd.
Los Angeles 90064

South Los Angeles Alliance of Neighborhood Councils Meeting

Thurs, Dec 18
Time: 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Community Health Councils
3731 Stocker, Suite 201
Los Angeles 90008

Alliance of River Communities (ARC)

Thurs, Dec 25

Christmas Holiday Day

Thurs, Dec 25



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

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