NEIGHBORHOOD POLITICS-In a world pummeled by budget deficits and the pandemic, the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates are pivoting from a single major White Paper incorporating reports on multiple City departments to a series of issue-driven papers drawn from concerns voiced by Angelenos.
This year our working committees are designed along themes that will cut across departments on specific issues that are of importance to the Neighborhood Councils and their stakeholders. These include equity, homelessness, affordable housing, the LAPD, the impact of COVID-19, the City budget, and ways to balance it, our underfunded pensions, and the interrelated problems of Public Works, planning and land use.
We will be working with the City Departments and City Hall as well as selected experts to analyze the impact of ever-evolving economic, social, and political events on our lives.
Using the passions, skills and experience of individual Budget Advocates, Budget Representatives, and interested stakeholders, these papers are intended to drive conversations by continuing to raise the awareness of all Angelenos on issues of importance, and on setting realistic goals and expectations for City Hall and its Departments. We intend to distribute our work to Neighborhood Councils, elected officials, and the media with the intent to drive discussion about constructive changes in our City.
With multiple papers over the full year, the Budget Advocates hope to engage Neighborhood Councils and people across the City, as well as the City’s government directly, to promote ideas that will create maximum positive change in Los Angeles.
The Budget Advocates will continue to advocate for full transparency and accountability as outlined in our call for Radical Transparency in last year’s White Paper.
The Budget Advocates will be expanding their outreach to Neighborhood Councils by providing more education on the City’s budget procedures and how they are affected, submitting updates on the budget and City’s finances monthly, developing deeper ties and soliciting their ongoing input into their work.
Most importantly, in this time of challenges, the Budget Advocates will be challenging City Hall to be the agents of change that will benefit all Angelenos by pivoting themselves, not only in words but in actions, on the big issues of our day: equity, climate change, affordable housing and homelessness, racial disparities, infrastructure, police reform, and job creation while simultaneously returning the City to a fiscally responsible budget.
Note: Basic information on the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates can be found on their website at NCBALA.com.
(The Budget Advocates is an elected, all volunteer, independent advisory body charged with making constructive recommendations to the Mayor and the City Council regarding the Budget, and to City Departments on ways to improve their operations, and with obtaining input, updating and educating all Angelenos on the City’s fiscal management.) Photo: Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star News/SCNG. Prepped for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.