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Westwood Village Improvement Association recap – May 16

By Stephanie Lai

May 16, 2019 3:37 p.m.

The Westwood Village Improvement Association is a nonprofit organization tasked with improving the state of Westwood Village. Property and business owners created the association in 2011 to provide the Village with functions the city of Los Angeles could not provide. Its board of directors will next meet July 18, 2019.

  • Erin Schneider, a field deputy for Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, said Westwood Connect Day, a resource fair to connect people impacted by homelessness to different services, provided 140 guests with clothing, food and hygiene services.

  • Andrew Thomas, executive director of the WVIA, said the association received a neighborhood purpose grant from the North Westwood Neighborhood Council to purchase hygiene kits, snack packs and supplies for homeless outreach and Westwood Access Day, an event to connect the homeless population to service providers. The association also hired Cherry Bush as the new social service outreach director for the homeless community in Westwood.

  • Board Chair Jim Brooks resigned from the board, and Kifishia Kawachi and Denise Garcia will no longer serve after this month. Brad Erickson, the former vice chair and UCLA representative to the board, is now serving as acting chair.

  • Tim Connors, an organizer for Westwood’s Far Out Fest and a fourth-year cognitive science student, said in a public comment that the 10-hour annual music event hosted 16 music groups from across LA this year. Connors said 100 groups applied to perform. The association provided funds for the event.

  • The Business Attraction and Retention committee discussed branding for Westwood’s Far Out Fest and guidelines for movie premieres in the Village. The committee also discussed plans for the Broxton Avenue pedestrian plaza.

  • The Clean, Safe and Beautiful committee discussed an uptick in crime with LAPD officers. The committee reached out to Councilmember Paul Koretz, who represents District 5 which includes Westwood and surrounding areas, to ask for an officer to be present in the Village.

  • The Executive Committee discussed hosting an election for the new board chair and increasing investments in the Village for next year.

  • The board appointed Josh Trifunovic, a co-owner of Rocco’s Tavern, to Zone 1 Board seat and Stephen Power, a representative of the W Hotel, to Zone 2 Board seat.

  • The board appointed Brad Erickson, Dean Abell, Jessica Dabney and Kevin Crummy to an ad hoc nominating committee to recommend candidates to fill three Zone 1 and merchant seats.

  • The board approved an increase in budget assessments by 3% in 2020. Thomas said the association expects to pay more than $148,000 in additional fees to maintain the same level of services this year and has allocated money for additional tree lighting. The board discussed sources to offset the increased costs.

  • The board approved nine guidelines for movie premiere applicants that include notifying merchants 30 days in advance and contacting all impacted businesses.

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Stephanie Lai
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