Run For A Seat on The Palms NC!
Candidate filing to become a candidate has officially closed.
What is the Palms Neighborhood Council?
The Palms Neighborhood Council (PNC) is an official advisory agency of the City of Los Angeles. The PNC serves as a voice for the over 44,000 residents of Palms. The Palms NC seeks to improve the quality of life of our stakeholders, engage on issues affecting the community, improve the delivery of City services to our area and make City officials and departments more accountable to community needs.
Okay, but what is a Neighborhood Council? How does this all work… in brief?
Every neighborhood in Los Angeles has a neighborhood council (NC), about 100 of them in total. These are hyper-local legislative bodies. Each NC gets an annual budget from the City of around $40,000 to spend on local initiatives. We set our own bylaws, goals, committee structure, etc and work together to both spend our budget to the benefit of the Palms community but also we use our bully pulpit to advocate with the City for better city services. All neighborhood council board members are elected neighborhood volunteers who generally spend 2-5 hours per week working on Neighborhood Council initiatives.
That sounds cool, what do you have to show for it? What did you do with that budget and bully pulpit?
Where do I register to run?
At this website run by the City Clerk. Just click on the “NC Candidate Registration Portal” button. Remember, registration to run closes on March 19th, so you must register by then.
Instructions on how to sign up can be found here.
The full list of registered candidates for the PNC can be found here.
A full timeline for the PNC election can be found here.
What are some key election dates?
Candidate Registration Period: February 17th – March 19th
PNC Candidate Info Session: March 6th
PNC Voluntary Campaign Training: April 3rd
PNC 1st Candidate Forum: May 1st
PNC 1st Candidate Forum: May 30th
Election Day: June 2nd
How does the PNC Board work? Which seats am I eligible for?
The PNC board is made up of 13 seats. Those seats include four executive board seats (President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary), five residential seats (one for each zone in Palms), two business seats, and one youth seat.
You may be eligible to run for several different seats. Here is how eligibility works:
Executive Board Seats (President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary) – Any stakeholder in Palms can run for these seats. They are the least restrictive seats. A stakeholder means you either live in Palms, work in Palms, own/run a business in Palms, own property in Palms, or have a substantial and ongoing stake in a local organization (i.e. your kid goes to school here, you are a faith-based group member, etc.).
Residential Seats – You have to live or own property in the zone you want to run for, it’s that simple! Just check out this map and you’ll figure out your zone.
Business Seats – These two seats are elected at large anywhere in Palms. To be eligible, all you have to do is work for or run a business in Palms. Home businesses count! [P.S. In previous election cycles each business seat had a different zone. This is no longer the case and the top two vote getters for business representatives who work or own any businesses anywhere in Palms will be elected.]
Youth Seat – We have one seat reserved for youth representation. You can only run for this seat if you are between the ages of 14 & 23. But, as long as you are 18 or older, you can run for a different seat instead if you would like!
What are each board seat’s responsibilities?
Executive board seats have slightly more duties than non-exec seats. These candidates are expected to set the pace and expectations for everyone else. Plus, they attend Executive Board Meetings in addition to the monthly general meeting and a committee meeting.
In general, all board members are expected to be able to attend the monthly board meeting (traditionally held on 1st Wednesdays from 7p-9p at the IMAN Center, 3376 Motor Ave) and participate in at least one committee (read about those here).
Particular responsibilities for all the seats can be found in our bylaws on page 7 here.
What if I am interested in joining the PNC but not in running? Or what if I don’t win?
The bulk of our work takes place in our committee system and you do NOT need to be an elected board member to sit on a committee. Actually, half of our committee chairs are not elected board members. You can join a committee right now! Just email the committee chair and start coming to their meetings. Committee info here and meeting calendar here.
I want to run, but how do I run an effective campaign?
The Palms NC will be holding an optional (but highly encouraged) electioneering workshop before a regular PNC Meeting on April 3rd @ 6pm at the IMAN Center. See up to date event details here.
Additionally, the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment will be holding election workshops throughout the City. You can find details on those here.
The Department of Neighborhood Empowerment also has an elections toolbox.
I want to run, but I am new, can I run for an executive board seat?
Yes! In 2016, during our last elections, all but one executive board seats was won by someone totally new to the Palms Neighborhood Council. No matter what seat you run for though, we would recommend you start coming to some PNC general meetings and committee meetings now to get a hang of things (plus it will make you a more effective candidate!)
Say I win, then what?
You begin your term on July 1, 2019 by being sworn in to your seat. There will be a new board member training and you will also have to take City Ethics Training and Funding Training so that you are equipped to handle the responsibility of spending public tax dollars on behalf of the people of Palms. Then it is off to the races working with your fellow board members to move projects forward for Palms!
This was helpful info but I want to go town and inhale more documents and learn even more! Can you paste a bunch of links below that will direct me to more information?
Happy to! See below:
- Palms NC Document Repository (contains past projects, meeting agendas and minutes, trainings, city documents, and so much more!)
- Department of Neighborhood Empowerment Website
- City Clerk NC Elections Website
- 2019 NC Elections Handbook
- Rest of the Palms NC website
- PNC Annual Reports
- PNC Twitter
- PNC Facebook Page