Councilmember Paul Krekorian, chairman of the city’s Education and Neighborhoods Committee, released a comprehensive review today of local democracy following a nearly year-long study of Los Angeles’ 92 neighborhood councils. The report encompasses the wide-ranging views of community leaders throughout Los Angeles.

Councilmember Krekorian speaks at the first Neighborhood Council Town Hall Workshop in Van Nuys | Sept. 19, 2010

“As Chairman of the Education and Neighborhoods Committee, I have made it a priority to gather input from neighborhood councils and all other stakeholders interested in the future of the Department Of Neighborhood Empowerment (DONE) and the neighborhood empowerment movement,” Councilmember Krekorian said.

“This report is a culmination of that effort and reflects the various views and opinions expressed at numerous neighborhood council meetings, regional alliance meetings, and many other events my staff and I have attended over the last 11 months.”

The report summarizes the input provided by those who participated in the two citywide town halls the office of Councilmember Krekorian conducted to gather specific information on neighborhood council elections, the role of DONE, the funding program and training and ethics requirements for neighborhood council board members.

“The global economic crisis and the fiscal emergency facing the City of Los Angeles has had a devastating impact on the DONE budget, which has resulted in a reduction of DONE staff by more than 50%.,” Councilmember Krekorian said. “While the budget crisis has presented us with unprecedented challenges, I also see it as an opportunity – an opportunity to make DONE more efficient, more effective, and more focused on the core function of empowering communities and helping neighborhood councils to flourish. Going forward, I will utilize these opinions in my policy making process on how to move forward with the challenge of reforming and improving DONE and the neighborhood council system.”

CLICK HERE to read the report.

The Mission Hills Neighborhood Council Board of Governors needs your help in participating more actively with the neighborhood council.

Your feedback and advice helps in framing the discussions and policies of the council. It is imperative that you participate in this process, otherwise, decisions tend to be made by a few people instead of a more broader stakeholder base.

We encourage all of you who have been reading our newsletters to sign-up for our weekly email calendar. It’s simple and convenient at www.mhnconline.org. Click on the “Join our Email List” tab and type in your contact information.

You can participate by attending meetings as a stakeholder or by participating on any of the committees that comprise the board. Mission Hills is your community, your home, and your voice should be heard.

Specific Needs Awareness Planning (S.N.A.P)- voluntary disaster registry website for Los Angeles County

For millions of Los Angeles County residents who have access and functional needs including those relating to physical, medical, sensory, cognitive or age-related conditions; disasters such as earthquakes, wildfires or floods will present a real challenge.

Disasters can strike at any time and without warning. To better prepare County residents for these and other types of disasters, the Los Angeles County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) announced the launch of the Specific Needs Awareness Planning (S.N.A.P.) voluntary disaster registry.

The S.N.A.P. registry is an Internet-based system that allows residents to provide information, which will be kept confidential, to public safety officials about their access or functional needs. S.N.A.P. does not guarantee priority response to registrants, it assists emergency response officials in planning and responding to the requirements of people with access and functional needs during a disaster by integrating database and mapping technology together.

S.N.A.P. was developed by the University of California Los Angeles School of Public Affairs in collaboration with the Los Angeles County Office of Emergency Management, Chief Executive Office, Office of Affirmative Action Compliance, Community and Senior Services, Fire, Health Services, Internal Services, Mental Health, Public Health, Public Social Services, Public Works and Sheriff, cities of Beverly Hills and Los Angeles, and non-profit organizations such as American Red Cross and Emergency Network Los Angeles.

TO REGISTER FOR S.N.A.P., go to http://snap.lacounty.gov and click on “Register Now.” Registrations can be made on an individual basis or as a group. Those individuals who do not have access to the Internet or may require additional assistance can ask a family member, friend or caregiver to register for them.

submitted by Fred Ginsburg

DONE is finally catching up on their reporting. A few days ago they posted our more recent activity. For the longest while, DONE had only reported up to Aug 24. Now, they are close to being current.

In terms of our Demand Warrants, DONE is up to date. Payments did go out in Sept for the newsletter, and the projectionist services for Movie in the Park. Thrifty Answering Service received two payments; DONE will not pay them for services in advance, but is paying their invoices month by month. The system seems to be working.

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To help residential customers save energy and money, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) will increase many of its rebates for the most energy efficient appliances and home improvement products on the market.

Starting October 1, 2010, LADWP will raise rebate amounts for qualifying high efficiency central air conditioners, pool pumps and motors, dual pane Energy Star® windows, and recycling old refrigerators. In addition, LADWP is adding two new products that are eligible for rebates: whole-house fans and cool roofs, both of which help keep your home cooler and reduce your air conditioning costs.

“We want our customers to get the very most for their money and help them to conserve energy,” said Lorraine Paskett, Senior Assistant General Manager, LADWP Sustainability Programs and External Relations. “These raises in rebate amounts are an invitation to embrace energy efficiency, save money and help the environment all at once.”

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It’s our goal to make this website as helpful as possible to our Mission Hills stakeholders. Therefore, we are excited to let you know about some new pages on our website, located under the Resources tab above.

Want to know when the Post Office is open? Where your nearest library is? How to contact your local elected government officials? Those are just some of the things you can find in the Resources section of our website.

–Webmaster Aaron