City officials have rescheduled a meeting with student leaders that would determine whether they can hold an election for a new neighborhood council for Westwood.
Westwood Forward, a coalition of students and community members proposing a new neighborhood council, is now scheduled to meet with the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners and the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment on March 13. The board and the department oversee neighborhood councils and the subdivision process, which allows groups to apply to split neighborhood councils.
Grayce Liu, general manager of the department, said it postponed the meeting, which was originally scheduled for February, because several members of the Westwood community had scheduled a meeting with Rep. Ted Lieu at the same time. Lieu represents the congressional district that includes UCLA and Westwood.
Michael Skiles, president of Graduate Students Association and a member of the coalition, said the city initially proposed a meeting date later than March 13, but added he and other student leaders negotiated to hold the meeting earlier to ensure it did not conflict with students’ finals. If the department and the board approve of the coalition’s application, Skiles said the tentative election date of May 22 for a new council would still be in place.
Westwood Forward proposed the council subdivision in November because some students felt the current council did not represent their interests. Coalition members have said they would like to see more nightlife and affordable housing options in Westwood.
Skiles said Westwood Forward is working with UCLA administrators to host the meeting at Weyburn Commons, where the meeting was originally planned to be held.