North Westwood Neighborhood Council recap — May 12
By Ishani Desai
May 15, 2021 10:32 a.m.
This post was updated May 21 at 1:23 p.m.
The North Westwood Neighborhood Council is the official neighborhood council representing Westwood Village and UCLA to the Los Angeles City Council. Council meetings are held each month and are open to the public via Zoom. The next meeting will be held virtually June 2.
Comments by Public Officials:
- Jasmine Shamolian, a representative for Los Angeles City Councilmember Paul Koretz, said Koretz’s office created a 15-member task force to find solutions for people experiencing homelessness. The group hopes to enact alternative policies separate from the city of Los Angeles’ approach to help people without homes.
- Shamolian also said Koretz’s office will allocate $450,000 to People Assisting the Homeless, a nonprofit that constructs houses, and allocated $10,000 to West LA Homeless, a volunteer group that provides health care, food and housing.
- Shamolian added that the office allocated funding to place speed feedback signs on Beverly Glen Boulevard, Westwood Boulevard and the intersection at Comstock Avenue and Wilshire Boulevard to discourage speed limit violations. The office is also installing protected left-turn traffic signals and updating the timing of red traffic lights along Wilshire Boulevard, Shamolian said.
- Zach Gaidzik, West LA field deputy for LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl’s office, said the office began offering COVID-19 vaccines to homebound individuals at their residences.
- Carmen Healey Zambrano, the UCLA Government and Community Relations assistant director, said undergraduate commencement ceremonies will begin June 10 at Drake Stadium and the LA Tennis Center.
- Janet Turner, a representative for U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu’s office, said the congressman requested $5 million from Congress for the Sepulveda Transit Corridor Project, LA Metro’s new rail line that will link the San Fernando Valley to West LA.
- Turner said Lieu asked the city of LA for funding to create a crisis and incident team that responds to nonemergency 911 calls regarding people with mental illnesses and people experiencing homelessness.
- Turner added that Lieu further requested funds for the UCLA mobile health care program to distribute medicine to people without homes.
- Turner also added that Lieu introduced the 21st Century Federal Writers’ Project Act to the House of Representatives to help employ writers and create a repository archiving stories about American history.
- Brad Fingard, the west area representative for Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office, said LA residents no longer need to make appointments to get a vaccine. Fingard said the office hopes to open pop-up vaccination sites in communities that face barriers to access to vaccines.
- Fingard also said about 50% of Westwood residents are vaccinated with one dose, which is slightly below the citywide average.
- Fingard added that the chief legislative analyst would recommend amendments to the LA city budget at the budget and finance committee meeting May 14.
There were no public comments.
- The board approved the minutes from the April 5 NWWNC meeting.
- The board unanimously approved the April 2021 monthly expenditure reports.
- The board unanimously approved a $5,000 neighborhood purpose grant to World Harvest Food Bank, which will use the funds to purchase pallet jacks.
- The board tabled a motion that would grant the Westwood Village Improvement Association a $5,000 NPG for the distribution of hygiene kits and restaurant gift cards by restaurant owners who serve people without homes.
- The board returned $13,904.14 of unused funds to the city of LA; the funds were earmarked for community organizations and other ventures. NPG approvals did not use the full budget, and the COVID-19 pandemic limited the NWWNC’s expenditures. Next term’s budget contains about $32,000.
- The board unanimously passed a motion recommending amendments to the appeals process for Westwood businesses. Under the recommendations, appellants would be allowed to file up to five appeals, with the filing fee increasing with each subsequent appeal. After an appellant has filed five appeals, the petitioner would have to provide evidence to continue the case. Additionally, appellants would have to live or work within 500 feet of the business they brought charges against or provide another reason why they are personally impacted by the appeal.
- The council unanimously approved a community impact statement opposing California State Assembly Bill 1401; the legislation would restrict local governments from creating minimum parking requirements within 0.5 miles of a transit hub.
- The council declined the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners’ request to modify bylaws. The commission, which oversees the LA Neighborhood Council system, requested an extension of the NWWNC members’ term from late May to a new date of June 30.