Friday, September 25, 2009

Neighborhood Council Summit To Address A Host of Wide Ranging Issues at "Action Summit"

HERE'S AN ANNOUNCEMENT THAT JUST CAME THROUGH:

Dear Friends:

The Neighborhood Councils Action Summit on October 3 is shaping up to be an interesting, unique, and productive event.

All of the information about the Summit can be found on the wiki at http://NCActionSummit.wetpaint.com

It will start at 8:00 a.m in the Faculty/Staff Center at Los Angeles City College, 855 N. Vermont Ave. in East Hollywood, and last until 3:30 p.m. Free parking and food will be available. The wiki includes maps to Lot 4 at the school, a campus map to the Center, the program, and information about each of the issues to be discussed and voted on.

This will be a bold grass-roots attempt to find out if the traditional Congress of Neighborhoods could be organized in a way that gives a stronger and more meaningful voice to the councils.

Do not confuse this event with the October 10th Congress of Neighborhoods that is organized by City Hall, and which has now been blended with the initial meeting of the Mayor’s Community Budget Day process at City Hall. Information about that event can be found at http://www.lacityneighborhoods.com/nccongress_10_09.htm.

The Neighborhood Council Action Summit promises less talk and more action. It also gives you a chance to speak out on real city issues that are too controversial to be on the program at the Congress of Neighborhoods. These are, in many ways, the issues that City Hall doesn't want you to discuss.

The major issues include:

1. Purising a City Charter Amendment for the ballot that would cut the salaries of city elected officials in half. [ZD: This is the most shallow, nutty, do-nothing, waste of crybaby loser effort imaginable. All that time and effort to save $1.2 million? It will cost more than that to get the signatures for the Charter Amendment. Why not just take the money and put it into the general fund? Just admit it: You are mad at the shady-losers who are doing a terrible job and you want to poke them in the eye. But if you are going for reform, go for billions, or you are just clowns, yourself. More on this later.]

2. Creating more accountability and transparency at the Department of Water and Power by creating an independent ratepayers’ advocate.

3. Medical marijuana shops.

4. Asking the mayor and City Council to act in a more fiscally responsible way by adopting balanced budgets into future years as many other cities do.

5. Giving the City Council the responses it is requesting from neighborhood councils on a variety of options for cutting into the 83-year backlog of sidewalk repairs. We will be joined by the popular Director of the Bureau of Street Services, Bill Robertson.

6. Supporting the Cyclists' Bill of Rights.

Additionally, you will have an opportunity to vote on several polling questions that will be asked throughout the day, including: how you feel about the City Council motion that would move Public Comment time to the end of the City Council's agendas; involving neighborhood councils in the selection and performance evaluation of general managers; once again printing Community Impact Statements on the city's agendas; making public the attendance records of City Council members; and whether or not City Hall should require neighborhood council bylaws to all be the same.

SO IN OTHER WORDS, YOU ARE ONCE AGAIN GOING TO TAKE A ROOM FULL OF PEOPLE WITH A ROOM FULL OPINIONS AND TRY TO TAKE ON JUST ABOUT EVERY ISSUE IN THE CITY. WAY TO FOCUS!

MEANWHILE...I don't think the Summit should talk about ANYTHING other than ONE issue: How the people in the room better organize and create the community advocate infrastructure to make their voice heard in an effecitive way and become competitive with the political machine that is pushing against them.

AGAIN...I see a list of way too many goals unless it's a weekend retreat. AND, I do not think the community or NC system is prepared to take on all of these goals. I don't think they are prepared to take on any two of them.

I SPOKE ABOUT SOME OF THE METHODS DURING THE RECENT CAMPAIGN. A LOT OF IT CAME FROM RON KAYE AND MICHAEL COHEN. (All of it, actually. I just liked it and rolled with it.)

So please...stop banging your collective heads against the wall. I know a lot of good comes out of these meetings, but I am so certain, in my opinion that there is only ONE issue to be addressed. But there is NO WAY you are going be able to resist anything other than addressing a host of issues when you don't have the lines of commuication and infrastructure up and running yet.

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