Before you give us flack on the headline, let us remind you of how much control the Mayor has over the various departments in the City of Los Angeles. Of the 49 Commissions/Committees in the City of Los Angeles, the Mayor controls 41!
When you look at the areas that are impacted and ask why our city is plagued with homelessness, exorbitant housing prices and abysmal transportation, all you have to do is look at who appointed the Commissioners.
If you need an example of what happens when just one person controls the entire universe around such essential and critical infrastructures, one only need to look at the Trump Administration, to see this in action on a national scale; EPA, NASA, FCC, Commerce, Trade, Defense, Budget, Energy, Transportation, and the list goes on. Are you asking if we are comparing the Garcetti Administration to the Trump Administration? You betchya!
The Mayor appoints the GM of DONE and in typical Garcetti/Trump fashion, ignores a letter signed by community leaders from all over the City and pretends “there is nothing to see here. These are not the droids you are looking for”. Nice to know what he thinks of all of you in your elected service.
To make matters worse, they agendized the appointment for tomorrow with zero public comments claiming that they satisfied public comment at the HENC committee meeting. So don’t bother showing up to the Council meeting to oppose. You will not be heard.
But then this is Garcetti’s MO, the talk big do nothing Mayor who is so far up developer heiny that he is willing to toss the true purpose of NC’s away just so he can attempt to push through his horrible policies aided by incompetent or unqualified staff and unprecedented nepotism.
Which brings us to the appointment of Raquel Beltrán. While we hope Ms. Beltran finds her footing within the NC system, she appears to be wholly unqualified to take on 98 NC’s that have had to spend most of their time fighting with incompetent DONE staff and navigate an obtuse, dishonest and ineffective GM in Liu.
Per the Los Feliz Ledger:
From 2006 to 2014, Beltrán served as the Executive Director of the League of Women Voters of Los Angeles. She’s also worked in government for the city of San Diego; as a Program Manager for the American Red Cross in San Francisco; and as the co-founder of the United Domestic Workers Union of America.
Ms. Beltran has spent most of her career embedded in governmental policy positions thru the Pat Brown Institute, the League of Women Voters and the American Red Cross outside of Los Angeles. None of these positions represent boots on the ground, knowledge, or an understanding of working with or supporting community orgs.
We hope Ms. Beltran tunes out the Absent Mayor, tunes out the num nut Grayce Liu, cleans house of the incompetent staff and bad information propagated and supported by Liu’s mismanagement and actually listens to the stakeholders elected to support their communities.
As a reminder, here is what the job of DONE is:
The Department of Neighborhood Empowerment Pledge
We will treat the public with courtesy and respect.
When explaining a restriction, making a suggestion, or reporting a delay, we will always explain the reason why.
We will ensure that people who call during working hours will always have an opportunity to speak to someone.
We will avoid using insider or bureaucratic language.
We will be good listeners.
We will honor the Mayor’s “no wrong door” policy, and never use the words, “It’s not my job!” We will find out whose job it is.
We will never say, “Because that’s the way we’ve always done it,” or “We tried it that way once but it didn’t work.”
We will keep the promises we make.
We believe that everyone deserves an answer.
We will strive to be the best friend that neighborhood councils have.
To date, we have yet to see any of this…
and here is what the job of NC leaders is:
To promote public participation in government and make government more responsive to local needs by creating, nurturing, and supporting a citywide system of grass-roots, independent, and participatory neighborhood councils
In 1999, voters approved a new City Charter that established the Neighborhood Council System and the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment “to promote more citizen participation in government and make government more responsive to local needs…
Note, it does not say rubber stamp the Mayor’s stupid. It says to make government more responsive to US!
Best of luck to you Ms. Beltran. You will need it and we will be watching.