Dear Friends – this is an important issue to our neighborhood. If you don’t want to have UCLA students making decisions that impact our neighborhood and quality of life, you need to vote in the May 22 election!
We need every single NO vote to defeat this ill-conceived proposal!
This is the story. The Westwood Neighborhood Council, a city organ, has functioned for over 8 years as a voice for the “stakeholders” of Westwood. We’re all represented; business, clergy, students, residents, and more. It’s an interesting example of pure democracy, since you don’t have to be a registered voter. You are permitted to vote if you have any type of a “stake” in Westwood, such as a business, have your hair cut here, live here, own apartments here, shop at Ralph’s, eat at Tanino’s or pick up your prescriptions at CVS. But the students have other ideas and want to be able to control the storefronts and businesses of Westwood Village. I think their goals are pure of heart but lacking maturity and a true understanding of the balance Westwood Village needs to have between student interests and homeowner’s interests. Besides that, they are here for a very short period of time and we are here for decades. The students want to split the WNC into their own UCLA neighborhood council along with Westwood Hills, which would be disastrous for those homeowners as well as the Village. To allow a few boisterous students who rant at WNC meetings the ability to solely review all applications for new businesses and address land issues would be a nightmare. All of us that love Westwood Village will wake up one day to find pool halls and bars filling the retail spaces of the Village and the area abandoned by the local residents. We MUST not allow the split to take place.
Anyone who is at least 17 years old can vote.
Vote in person on Tuesday, May 22, between 2pm – 8pm, at the Westwood Rec Center on Sepulveda (one block south of Wilshire), OR vote by mail ahead of time.
To vote by mail (VBM), you first have to apply for a VBM ballot – you can apply online separately for you and other family members who are at least 17, at this link: https://clerkappsele.lacity.org/vbmreg/#/vbm You should check the box that says you live within the Westwood boundaries, and give them your home address. If you have any problem with the online application system, first call the City Clerk at (213) 978-0444. If they can’t help you, let me know right away and I will send you a print application which must be received by the City Clerk by May 15.
The City Clerk will then mail each of you a ballot. When you get it, vote NO, and return the ballot as instructed in the return envelope they will provide. Ballots must be received back by the City Clerk by May 22 – you can either mail them in enough time to get downtown by that date, or drop them off at the Westwood Rec Center on May 22.
Please apply today or tomorrow to be sure to meet the deadline for application. Let me know if you have any problems. In addition, if you have friends who do not live in Westwood but come here to shop, dine, attend events, go to doctors or other vendors, they can also vote as a community interest stakeholder – email me for more info.