Tag Archives: Neighborhood Council Valley Village

8 Reasons Why I’m Happy That Valley Village Will Not Be Split Into Two Congressional Districts

For the past ten years, Valley Village has been split into two congressional districts. The boundary was split down Laurel Canyon Boulevard rather

Current Council District map

than the Tujunga Wash, which is the natural boundary for both Neighborhood Council Valley Village and the Valley Village Homeowners Association. But with the new census comes new maps that need to be redrawn, and there have been many loud and persistent voices in the community urging the Los Angeles City Council Redistricting Commission to make Valley Village whole.

Valley Village section to be split

Just three weeks ago the commission presented a 2012 draft that had Valley Village again split into two districts, this time with a boundary down Whitsett Avenue.  Those loud and persistent voices grew even louder and more persistent.

The cacophony paid off. In the final draft presented last week, the commission moved the boundary west to the wash, so for the next ten years our community will be represented by just one congressman (or woman, should she choose to throw her bonnet into the ring).

So with tremendous celebratory fanfare akin to when the south rejoined the north and the United States of America was again made whole, I offer:

8 Reasons Why I’m Happy That Valley Village Will Not Be Split Into Two Congressional Districts:

1. Because there will be only one congressional field office representative reporting at the Neighborhood Council meeting, it should now wrap up before 9:00 pm in time for board members to see Modern Family.

2. There will only be one politician to blame (or butt kiss, depending on the need) which saves postage when mailing either cookies or anthrax (again, depending on the need).

3. Val Surf will be in the same district as the Tujunga Wash to make it easier for surfing to the Pacific Ocean.

4. The new boundary includes Rite Aid and Edwin’s Pharmacy for those who want a legitimate drug alternative to the half dozen pot shops.

5. Since the Valley Village area west of Whitsett will not be swallowed by the area of Sherman Oaks known as Sherman Village, it avoids the embarrassing nickname Shirley Village.

6. We gain a liquor store and three bars to help balance Valley Village’s numerous AA meetings.

7. St. Patrick’s Day is next week and now we can celebrate the big day within Valley Village by shopping at Shamrock Imports rather than venturing to neighboring communities for a McDonalds green milkshake.

8. Now we won’t have to get into a turf war with Sherman Oaks over ignoring the teeny tiny plot of land south of Riverside between Whitsett and the Tujunga Wash. It’s theirs. And it’s just the right size for another pot shop.

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My year as a Neighborhood Council Valley Village Board Member

Neighborhood Council Valley Village is made up of 15 dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly for their community. Please take a look at Communications Chair Steven Stokes’ open letter to Valley Village and president Tony Braswell’s list of accomplishments for 2011 by clicking here. It definitely takes a village.

It’s been nearly a year since I was elected to the board of Neighborhood Council Valley Village (NCVV), and I can’t believe what a rewarding experience it has been. Board president Tony Braswell recently listed NCVV’s accomplishments for 2011, and the total is quite impressive.

A year ago, I didn’t know much about local politics, and I wasn’t even sure exactly what neighborhood councils were. I’ve since found that neighborhood councils started forming nearly ten years ago when the San Fernando Valley threatened to secede from Los Angeles. Instead, neighborhood councils were formed across the city of LA to form a bridge between the mayor’s office and their local communities. These volunteers give and receive input about matters like the budget, as well as programs and issues that are important to their community.

For me personally, there were some very satisfying moments:

I'm the 4th from the right

I donned a hard hat and shovel and posed with Councilmember Paul Krekorian for the Valley Village Park improvement groundbreaking ceremony.

I worked hard to try to get shade structures installed over the playground at Valley Village Park, and although there were a few neighbors across the street from the park who were pretty angry (they felt that the park was already too crowded), during Christmas week when the temperature hit the high 80’s my son Jake was able to play without getting heat stroke.

I fought the good fight trying to drum up a letter writing campaign to convince the state Citizens Redistricting Commission (CRC) not to split Valley Village in two. We were unsuccessful, but not for lack of trying.

I was able to chat with Councilmember Paul Krekorian and State Assemblyman Mike Feuer numerous times. Although I had barely heard their names before I joined the board, by the time I met and shook hands with them, I was pretty star-struck.

I'm on the left, waving like Miss America

After marching with my neighbors in the Valley Village 4th of July parade for a decade, this year I was able to wave from a convertible with my fellow board members.

I had a great time volunteering at events like the Pet Adoption Fair, Paul Krekorian’s Inaugural Celebration, National Night Out, Neighborhood Watch, adding information to the NCVV website, promoting events on Patch, attending conventions and seminars like the 2011 LA Congress of Neighborhoods, ethics training, and the Neighborhood Council Green Practices & Projects Workshop, enjoying the Police Activity League Supporter (PALS) Luncheon and Awards and chatting with Officer of the Year Bill Lantz, and working with some very knowledgeable and devoted members on the projects and communications committees.

At the East Valley Police Activity League Supporter (PALS) Luncheon and Awards with Officer of the Year Bill Lantz and felllow NCVV board members Ginny Hatfield and Suzanne Lewis

By getting involved in NCVV, I was able to provide firsthand information regarding the notorious fence with the commissioned graffiti, the continued closing of the two tunnels under the 170 Freeway, additional park improvements, Neighborhood Watch, specific crimes in our neighborhood, and the events at National Night Out.

I admit the meetings can be a little dull and they don’t attract a lot of people. But there was a particular purpose I wanted to serve. I figured that like me, there are hundreds of other parents of young children who live in Valley Village. During our board meetings they are busy working late or making dinner or helping the kids with their homework or giving them a bath… They probably want to know what’s going on in their community, but they’re busy with their daily lives. I figured that since I interact with a lot of them, I could tell them firsthand what’s going on.

This year I look forward to adding more information to the Neighborhood Council Valley Village website (myvalleyvillage.com) and working on and promoting events like our upcoming blood drive (April 10th at Colfax Charter Elementary School), the Virtual Garden Tour, the Pet Adoption Fair,

NCVV logo

the Valley Village Park Refurbishment Celebration, and the online business directory.

I encourage anyone who lives in the Valley Village area to participate by attending our meetings at Colfax Charter Elementary School at 7:00 pm on the 4th Wednesday of each month, or join one of NCVV’s committees, which also meet monthly. You can devote as little or as much time as you like. You too can experience the rewards of volunteering and being more involved in your community.

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Filed under Multitasking, Parenting, Volunteering