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North Westwood Neighborhood Council recap – April 26

By Matthew Royer

April 29, 2023 2:09 p.m.

This post was updated April 30 at 10:37 p.m.

The North Westwood Neighborhood Council is the official neighborhood council representing UCLA and Westwood Village to the Los Angeles City Council. Council meetings are held each month and are open to the public at UCLA’s Weyburn Terrace. The next meeting will be held in person May 3.

The council did not meet quorum during its April meeting, rendering them unable to hold votes – only eight members were present out of the 10 needed to vote on agenda items.

Comments by public officials:

  • Patricia Macias, Westwood field deputy for District 5 Councilmember Katy Yaroslavsky, informed the council that the city’s budget and finance committee is holding rounds of in-person and virtual comments on the mayor’s proposed budget. She also spoke on the council member’s motion for the LA Department of Water and Power to provide service repairs on priority one and two poles in the district. Macias also told the council that the council member’s office is working alongside UCLA and the LA Sanitation Department to increase the regularity of large item pickups in north Westwood. Lastly, she briefed the council on an oil spill on Sepulveda Boulevard between National Boulevard and Exposition Boulevard.
  • Michael Russell, executive director of the Westwood Village Improvement Association, provided the council with an update on the Broxton Plaza opening, which restricts Broxton Avenue to pedestrian-only traffic. He said that delays prevented the plaza from opening in April, and WVIA has now signed permits with the city to begin construction in June and open in July. He added that regular programming in the plaza should be expected.
  • Karen McClain, UCLA Alumni Association government and community relations liaison, reminded the council of upcoming First Thursdays on May 4 and June 1. The May event will be themed “Joy Fest” – a celebration of Bruin talent – while the June event will be a screening of a movie to be announced on a later date. She also informed the council that, in honor of Memorial Day, UCLA will be hosting a ceremony May 25 at 11 a.m. in Wilson Plaza. She also mentioned that Metro Micro offers students $1 rides in the Westwood area, and the Sepulveda Transit Corridor For All coalition is asking for community member testimonials regarding the Metro expansion project.
  • Erica Gatica, Department of Neighborhood Empowerment project coordinator, informed the council that the LA Congress of Neighborhoods will be hosting workshops for neighborhood councils at City Hall on Sept. 23. She also updated the council on the status of Senate Bill 411 – which would grant neighborhood councils the ability to hold meetings online or in a hybrid format without an emergency declaration. It passed the Governance and Finance Committee and will now move to the Judicial Committee in the state Senate.

Public Comment:

  • Steven Sann, from the Friends of Westwood Library, discussed the success of the Westwood Branch Library book sale Saturday. He also informed the council of a meeting Monday with Rep. Ted Lieu – who represents California’s 36th congressional district – hosted by himself and a coalition of Westwood community leaders. The meeting will discuss artificial intelligence, the Sepulveda Transit Corridor and veteran homelessness.
  • Jacob Wasserman reminded the council of his candidacy for the workers’ seat on the council. He said his experience working in the transportation sector makes him an ideal candidate for the position.

Agenda:

  • The council heard from Gatica, who informed them that the Board of Neighborhood Commissioners is enforcing the Brown Act – a law that guarantees the public’s right to engage with local legislative bodies. She added the council will now have to comply with mandatory council training for missing three mandatory posting deadlines for agendas. A date for the training will be set at the next council meeting if quorum is met.
  • The council was presented with a proposal for a neighborhood purpose grant by Sann. He requested up to $5,000 for physical books at the Westwood Branch Library, adding that the library’s current funding has gone toward electronic copies of media, which expire after a certain amount of use. The grant will go up for a vote next meeting if quorum is met.
  • The council was presented with a proposal for a neighborhood purpose grant by Terry Tegnazian, co-founder of LA Musical Salon. She requested up to $5,000 to fund a concert series at the Westwood Branch Library. If granted, the funds will be used to pay musicians and graphic designers. There are 11 concerts planned for 2023. The grant will go up for a vote next meeting if quorum is met.
  • The council was presented with a proposal for a neighborhood purpose grant by Matt Flesock, executive director of UCLA Health’s Sound Body Sound Mind, an organization that provides local middle and high schools with physical education equipment and wellness resources. He requested $5,000 for new cardio and weight equipment at Emerson Community Charter Middle School and University High School Charter. Flesock mentioned both schools are not within district boundaries but have students and faculty who live within the district.
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Matthew Royer | National news and higher education editor
Royer is the 2023-2024 national news and higher education editor. He is also a Sports staff writer on the men’s soccer and softball beats and is Copy staff. He was previously the 2022-2023 city and crime editor and a contributor on the features and student life beat. He is also a fourth-year political science student minoring in labor studies from West Hills, California.
Royer is the 2023-2024 national news and higher education editor. He is also a Sports staff writer on the men’s soccer and softball beats and is Copy staff. He was previously the 2022-2023 city and crime editor and a contributor on the features and student life beat. He is also a fourth-year political science student minoring in labor studies from West Hills, California.
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