GUEST COMMENTARY--On Monday, Mayor Garcetti gave his State of the City speech in the People’s Hall, City Council Chambers.
Joined by staff, union leaders, lobbyists, developer’s reps, and his select few, the Mayor, for the first time, did NOT invite the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates to sit inside council chambers.
This is a very telling sign, considering he is prepping to run for President.
The speech, which like most state of the city speeches, was long on back patting and promises, but short on tackling the big issues that affect our everyday lives.
The city continues to lack in services, has not figured out how to reduce the annual structural deficit, pay down pension debt, fix our streets and sidewalks, eliminate homelessness, bring affordable housing to Los Angeles, just to name a few of the critical issues.
In his speech, he points to his work with neighborhood councils.
This, as with many of the city councilmembers, is disingenuous.
Neighborhood councils are included when they want us and excluded when we are inconvenient.
IT's time for neighborhood council members to have their voices heard, and not after the fact.
(Jay Handal is Co-Chair of the NC Budget Advocates, treasurer of the West Los Angeles NC and Los Angeles Police Commission Hearing Examiner. He is also a consultant to the cannabis industry. Mr. Handal’s views are his own.)