CITYWATCH - That buzz you heard sweeping through LA’s neighborhoods today was shock recovery. One of LA’s electeds came down on the side of neighborhood councils and the surprise nearly caused collective heart failure.
City Attorney Carmen Trutanich fired off a letter to Mayor Villaraigosa … with copies to Herb Wesson, Paul Krekorian and Miguel Santana, the City’s financial chief … reminding them that Charter-required activities of government (i.e. neighborhood councils) ‘cannot be so de-funded as to materially’ prevent those activities from being performed.
Trutanich urged the Mayor to “provide full funding to all neighborhood councils” so they can do what the Charter asks them to do.
The City Attorney’s letter is the result of requests for support and action from the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates, chaired by Jay Handal.
“Nuch is the first elected official to give more than lip service and actually take action on behalf of NCs,” Handal said, and then added, “You support NCs and you support 4 million stakeholders.”
CityWatch writer and LA Watchdog Jack Humphreville thought “Trutanich’ office did a great job” on his advisory to the Mayor and reminded that Jane Usher, Special Assistant City Attorney and one of the founders of the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council was a major player in the drafting of the letter.
No for-publication response yet from the Mayor’s office but reliable sources at City Hall report that CAO Santana was less than pleased with the City Attorney’s letter.
It’s still early in the budget tug of war but for the moment neighborhood council leaders were celebrating an historic first: a Los Angeles elected official actually talking some ‘truth to power’ on their behalf.
Vol 11 Issue 22
Pub: Mar 15, 2013