Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council March 2021: Issue #3
Closer look:
Save the Date: SONC Board Meeting March 8th

SONC Committee Updates

SONC Voter Registration

And more!

SONC Monthly Meetings
for March 2021

March 2nd, 2021, 6pm

March 3rd, 2021, 7:30pm

March 4th, 2021, 6:30pm

March 8th, 2021, 6:30pm

March 9th, 2021, 6:30pm

March 10th, 2021, 7:30pm
To view webinar details,
please visit the calendar.

March 15th, 2021, 7pm

March 16th, 2021, 7pm

March 18th, 2021, 6:30pm

March 23rd, 2021, 7pm

March 24th, 2021, 6:30pm

Please visit the committee
pages for agendas.

*=Visit Committee page to confirm time.
Message from the President
Jeffrey Hartsough
Welcome to the Ziff Flyer, the newsletter for the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council (SONC).

Thank you for being an interested and involved member of the Sherman Oaks community.

There’s a lot happening in our Sherman Oaks world. All competing for our attention. Here are a few things you should be thinking about. Some effects are short term, others long term. 

SONC Elections

Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council (SONC) elections will be held this Spring – Election day is May 11, 2021.

Fourteen of the 22 seats on the Neighborhood Council are up for election. Thank you to the 28 individuals who stepped up and filed to be candidates. We look forward to getting to know you as candidates and your continued active participation in our community after the elections.
Jeffrey Hartsough
President of SONC
Community Interest 2
Vote-By-Mail Ballots

As a result of the pandemic, the challenge we face in this year’s election is voting will ONLY be done by Vote-By-Mail Ballots. The process of voting will be more difficult. It won’t be as simple as showing up at the polling place and casting a ballot. It’s a three-step process -- apply for a ballot, get the ballot, and submit the ballot.

Metro – Sepulveda Transit Corridor Project

On February 25, 2021, the Metro Board received a staff recommendation regarding the Metro project to build a mass transit train between the San Fernando Valley and West Los Angeles. Much time and effort has already been spent on planning for this project. Previously Metro had proposed four possible types of trains and routes. The recommendation before the Metro board involves two additional alternatives.

The Sepulveda Transit Corridor Project deserves our attention because it will have a significant impact on our Sherman Oaks community. Please learn about this project. Metro provides information about it on their website:

SONC believes the best solution is a heavy rail subway train that has a station in the area of Ventura and Van Nuys boulevards. But what we absolutely want to avoid is elevated trains above the streets of Sherman Oaks.

We ask you to learn about this project and actively contact Metro to make sure that Metro selects the best mass transit solution for Sherman Oaks and the Valley. Look for a special edition of this newsletter for additional information on how to make your voice heard.

Land Use, Zoning, and
Single-Family Neighborhoods

This is an ongoing and complicated topic. All sorts of players involved. You should be aware that legislation being proposed in Sacramento would significantly alter what types of housing could be built on what are now defined as single-family lots.

Please learn about California State Senate bills SB9 and SB10 and how they will change the density and type of housing that would be built in our community. Please take the time to research and learn about these two proposed bills. SONC is opposed to the bills as currently presented. Make your voices heard.

COVID-19 – One-Year Anniversary

We cannot ignore that COVID-19 and its devastating effects have been with us for one year. Please continue to follow the public health guidelines – wear mask, social distancing, wash hands, stay home. And get your vaccine.

Recognize, respect, and appreciate the front-line workers that have helped us all get through these challenging times. Be supportive and kind to each other.

Please stay safe, healthy, and in good spirits.

Thank you for being part of our
Sherman Oaks community.

--Jeffrey Hartsough
Not sure what area you live in and who your
Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council representative is? Email with your cross-streets and navigational direction -- we will help you out!

Join Madeleine, a 12-year old student from Buckley School, in remembering those who have died of Covid-19.

MAIL 8 inch x 8 inch MEMORIAL SQUARES to:

3940 Laurel Canyon Blvd #443
Studio City, CA 91604

Visit for more info.

If you are interested in volunteering with the
LA Regional Food Bank, please visit this link here.

Questions, concerns, please email: 
Virtual SONC Meetings – Join Us

On March 12th the City, in response to the pandemic, suspended all meetings, activities, and events of SONC. We missed the annual Spring Tree Giveaway. We missed you at our meetings. Recently SONC began to hold “virtual” meetings. These “virtual” meetings are held by way of teleconferences and video conferences. Not as personal as in-person gatherings but virtual meetings are a beginning and likely to be the way we will be meeting for at least the next several months. 

Information about the meetings and how to “join in” is available on the SONC website: We will be adding additional information on the website about virtual meetings as we become more familiar with the best way to hold virtual meetings. Please give us your feedback and comments. And please be patient as we all learn what works and what doesn’t work. 

The next SONC Board meeting
is on March 8th, 2021.
We hope you join us.

Webinar ID: 85140543942
Telephone: 1-669-900-6833, enter 85140543942 #
SONC Board Meeting November 9th, 2020
Zoom Credentials -- SONC Board Meeting

The agenda will be available on March 5th, 2021 on the SONC website,

The Access information for SONC meetings is unique for each meeting.

To join SONC's virtual board meeting on
March 8th, 2021 at 6:30 pm.

By Telephone:
1-669-900-6833, enter 85140543942 #

By the Internet:
(1) Follow link:
(2) Press “Enter”

Or from a Zoom “Enter the Meeting” Screen:
(1) Enter the Webinar ID: 85140543942
(2) Press “Enter”
(3) Enter your Email Address and Your Name, and
(4) Press “Enter”

Should you have technical questions or issues, please email
Volunteer with NHIFP

The season for giving is here! Take advantage of helping out your community.

North Hollywood Interfaith Food Pantry is looking
for volunteers.

For more information, please visit:
How can I help my community?

If you live, work, own property, own a business or belong to a non-profit organization, school or religious institution in Sherman Oaks, you are a stakeholder in Sherman Oaks. We hold monthly Board of Directors and various committee meetings which you are invited to attend to learn about and participate in your community.

Start with the website and learn more!

To access our schedule of meetings, times, and locations, visit our " Calendar " page.

To access detailed committee information, including agendas, minutes, and documents, visit our Committees page.

To view the rules of the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council, visit the Bylaws page.

To subscribe & sign up to receive e-mailed agendas, visit the City of Los Angeles' Early Notification System.

For a list of motions and voting history for SONC, view the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council Motions page.

Please continue to scroll down to see SONC Committee Updates and FAQ about your Neighborhood Council.

Register to vote!

Elections for the Sherman Oaks
Neighborhood Council (SONC)

Fourteen (14) SONC Board seats will be up for election on May 11, 2021. Voting for this election will be done with Vote-By-Mail ballots.

Over the next few months it is a great time for you to learn not only about SONC and Los Angeles City Neighborhood Councils in general but also to think about how you might want to become an active participant in your Neighborhood Council.

Candidate Filing Period Begins: January 9, 2021
Candidate Filing Period Ends: February 23, 2021  
Election Day: May 11, 2021

If you have already filed and have questions please explore the possibilities by visiting the City Clerk’s website at:

If you're not sure what steps to take next as a Candidate, please click on this link SONC Candidate Resource Guide for more info.
Subscribe to SONC's 
Early Notification System via Department of Neighborhood Empowerment to receive all agendas for both board meetings and committee meetings.
Volunteer with The Valley of Change

The Valley of Change presents "Feed our friends in need" on the Second Saturday of the month from 8:30 - 11:30 AM.

Drop-off food, drinks, citrus & other donations at the Galleria by Friday at 6pm.

For more information please visit,

Stay connected:
IG: @TheValleyofChange
Twitter: @ValleyChange
Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council
Frequently Asked Questions

Who can join the
Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council?

Whether you are a stakeholder in Sherman Oaks, or simply an interested party, you can receive our newsletter and special bulletins by signing up for our mailing list. You are encouraged to join a committee and join the effort.

What is SONC's mission?

-To bridge the gap between our stakeholders and local government.

-To engage the broad spectrum of SONC stakeholders for collaboration and deliberation on matters affecting the community including events, issues and projects.

-To work to achieve the objectives or projects that the SONC desires to support.

-To monitor and promote the delivery of City services within Sherman Oaks.

-To promote SONC stakeholder participation and advocacy in City government decision-making processes and to promote greater awareness of and achieve maximum utilization of available resources.

-To be an advocate for the Sherman Oaks community to government and private agencies.

- To present to the Mayor and the City Council a list of SONC priorities for the City budget as per LAAC ordinance #172728 section 1, div. 22.

- To take any other action that is, or may be, authorized for neighborhood councils of the City of Los Angeles.

What are the boundaries
of SONC's jurisdiction?

Mulholland Drive on the South, Burbank Blvd. on the North, 405 FWY on the West, Coldwater Canyon Blvd. on the East to the 101, then the zip code boundary between Studio City and Sherman Oaks on the East.

What is SONC's mailing address?

Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council PO Box 5721 Sherman Oaks, California 91413

Who voted for the independent
Neighborhood Councils to start?

The voters of Los Angeles passed a new City Charter in 1999 which calls for a citywide system of independent neighborhood councils, chosen by the people of the neighborhoods themselves.

What is the purpose of the
Neighborhood Council?

The purpose of neighborhood councils is to promote public participation in City governance and decision-making process so that government is more responsive to local needs and requests. Neighborhood Councils will advise the Mayor, City Council and City Departments on the City budget and will give local residents greater say over the decisions that affect our lives.

What is SONC's purpose?

To promote public participation in City governance and decision-making processes so that government is more responsive to local needs.
VISION & PLUM Committee -- Jeff Kalban, Chair

Our Planning and Land Use Committee (PLUM) and our Vision Committee are fighting to save our community. Currently there are three threats to our community.
  1. The Department of City Planning has cut Sherman Oaks into three parts for their Community Plan Updates; the Southeast Valley Community Plan, the North Sherman Oaks-Van Nuys Community Plan and the Ventura Cahuenga Boulevard Specific Plan Update. These Updates will establish our zoning for the next 20 years, yet there is no coordination. This is unconscionable.
  2. Our State legislature is once again attacking single family zoning. If SB 9 and SB 10 pass an apartment house or as many as 8 dwelling units can be on any lot in any residential zone. This includes our canyon, hillsides, even gated communities. Attend our Vision meeting March 4 to hear the gory details.
  3. Metro announced the two preferred Pre-Development Agreement (PDA) concepts for the Sepulveda Transit Corridor Project. Unfortunately one is a heavy rail train running above Sepulveda Blvd. The offensive impact of this concept will be visual blight, unbearable noise, lost privacy and even worse traffic congestion. The support structures for the raised tracks on Sepulveda will take away the left hand turn lanes. Just imagine the intersection of Sepulveda and Ventura with no left hand turn pockets.
Our March 4 Vision meeting will discuss these pending disasters and present visual examples of what may be the result on Sherman Oaks.
Our March 18 Planning and Land Use (PLUM) meeting will be reviewing Chick Fil A’s proposal for the Corky’s site on Van Nuys. 
Our committees have studied our community for the past eight years and published our Vision 2020 that prescribes means to achieve increased density, housing equality and commercial growth while enhancing the quality of life in a greener Sherman Oaks. As a community we must demand a unified approach. Good urban planning is not a piecemeal process. A link to our Vision 2020:
Please join us and attend our virtual meetings. Vision meets at 6:30 on the first Thursday of the month and PLUM at 6:30 on the third Thursday. Coming up that’s March 4 and 18.
We have come a long way in the last 20 years. We cannot let wrong minded legislation and bureaucracy ruin Sherman Oaks!

EDUCATION Committee-- Joe Cappelletti, Chair
The SONC Education Committee is dedicated to establishing and supporting programs and volunteer resources related to education. We are committed to supporting our educators, our families and our community leaders. Monthly meetings provide an open, welcoming forum for stakeholders to get involved in helping us to make a positive impact and to build stronger connections between us.  
Speaker Series Update: 
We welcomed our second awesome guest, Dr. Martinque Starnes on December 6th. Her presentation was both informative and engaging. We are so fortunate to have access to such gifted speakers in this series. For those of you who have been unable to attend this event or the earlier one with Dr. George Lipsitz- you can find both on our website. Each clocks in at just under an hour. You’ll be very glad you did! 

If you or anyone you know would like to participate as one of our future speakers - please let us know. We are always searching for volunteers willing to share their experience and expertise in the study of racial disparities. Our last event was on February 27th when we welcomed guest speakers from UCLA Labor Relations: Janna 
Shadduck Hernandez, Ed.D, Victor Narro and Dr. Gaspar Rivera Salgado. The lecture addressed racial disparity in the workplace with respect to securing employment, advancement and general opportunities. 
Our goal is to provide a forum that will bridge social science professionals and interested neighbors who hope to gain deeper insight into differences of all kinds based on ethnicity. We’d like to cultivate a more understanding, engaged and connected community and we welcome you to join us!

Tutoring Update: 
Tutoring continues at Grant High School where Seniors are tutoring Freshman and Sophomores in a variety of academic subjects including AP Physics, Bio and Spanish. This Program is led by SONC Youth Board member, Marcus Zimmerman. 

A new program began at Hi-Tech LA Middle School the week of February 1st. Tutors from Notre Dame High School have been partnered with Middle School teachers who have aligned their area of interest with the students. Nine tutors are assisting students with homework up to three times per week. In addition, the students launched an Art Club, Anime Club, Lego Club, and Mock Trial Club after school. Eventually, they will launch additional clubs including a Current Events Club, Chess Club, and World Sports Club. 

The SONC tutoring program has also connected with Van Nuys Middle School about a potential mentorship program with Science Academy STEM Magnet. The goal is to have the Science Academy High School students create and conduct STEM talks for the middle school students and then collaborate on a community service project together. This has a proposed launch date of February 19th.

We are always interested in welcoming interested community members to attend our events and monthly meetings. Get involved! We’d love to hear your ideas and to work together to address the needs of Sherman Oaks and our LA neighbors.

We have several exciting new projects in the works. Come see us at our next meeting and find out how you can join our efforts.

Committee: Joe Cappelletti, Lisa Cappelletti, Fran Kerzner, Alexandria Naseef, Sarah Mirman, Marcus Zimmerman, Chris Wiggins, Owen Cappelletti

To access the next Virtual Meeting on the Zoom Platform,
please see Education Committee page for updates and agendas.

For parents who are teaching their kids at home. Please check out this Education Resource Guide put together by the Education Committee.
Please click on the button below.
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS Committee-- Gil Imber, Chair
The SONC Government Affairs Committee continues to review, consider, and vote on matters of citywide concern, including city council activity, legislation, and other items involving governing bodies, departments, and individuals.
The Committee generally meets on the fourth Tuesday of each month and members of the public are invited to attend and provide input on positions the Neighborhood Council should take.

At its February meeting, the Government Affairs Committee adopted a motion to support the creation of a federal domestic terrorism statute and specific identification of certain federal crimes as terrorism. The Committee also adopted a motion in support of two LA City Council files, which in turn oppose two California State Senate bills relative to housing.

These flawed housing bills, if adopted, would restrict and override local control over land use, zoning, and/or development; eliminate certain environmental review, which in Sherman Oaks is especially untenable due to a large portion of our community that is located in areas deemed Very High Fire Hazard Severity Risk; restrict or even eliminate the opportunity for public hearing regarding new housing projects and developments; and change housing procedures without any provisions for or regard to affordable housing, also known as affordability requirements, the effect of which could produce a goldmine for profit-minded real estate developers while greatly harming housing affordability outcomes for renters and prospective residential owners, including landlords, in Sherman Oaks and other California communities.

The SONC Board, in turn, approved and adopted both Government Affairs motions at its February 8, 2021 meeting.

Government Affairs will continue its discussion of the ongoing LA City Council and School Board redistricting process at its next meeting, with great regard for considering which City Council District placement will best serve the interests of Sherman Oaks residents and stakeholders.

To access the next Virtual Meeting on the Zoom platform: please see our Government Affairs Committee Page for agendas and webinar info.

OUTREACH Committee-- Sarah Manuel, Chair
Please join the Outreach Committee for our next meeting on Tuesday, March 16th, 2021 at 7pm. We will be continuing the discussion of our 2021 Community Programming as well as preparing for our upcoming SONC Elections in May 2021.
Stay tuned for more opportunities to get involved with YOUR community. We may be apart but we are still working together. 

Want real-time information and updates? Take advantage of being informed and participate in your community. We will continue to post information about volunteering, resources and more, so please "Like" us on FB and follow us on IG.

To access the next Virtual Meeting on the Zoom platform: please see Outreach Committee Page for agendas and webinar info.

Christy Adair, Chair

The Public Safety Committee meets the 2nd Tuesday of every month.
In the January SONC Public Safety meeting we discussed preparing for a disaster – what is needed in a typical Go Bag and what is needed at home if we must "shelter in place" for an extended period.  

In the March SONC Public Safety meeting we will continue our Emergency Preparedness Theme by discussing the moments right after a significant disaster. Since we live in So Cal – we will gear the conversations towards the aftermath of a Big Earthquake.

“It is 4:30am and the earth just woke you up with a jolt, but you’re okay! Now what do you do? What does your room look like? What sounds and smells do you notice? Where are your loved ones right now - and how quickly can you ensure they are okay?”

The moments after a significant earthquake are precious… we’ll talk about the first 3 minutes, 3 hours and first 3 days and give some suggestions on how to get through it.

Next meeting will be March 9th, 2021, 6:30pm.
By Telephone: Dial 1-669-900-6833, Enter Webinar ID 842 7040 8817, and Press #
Online: Cut and Paste 
Press “Enter”
Or on Zoom join meeting screen enter
Webinar ID: 842 7040 8817

To access this Virtual Meeting on the Zoom Platform: please see Public Safety Committee page for agendas and webinar info.

-- AVO BABIAN, Chair
Our Traffic and Transportation committee is currently working hard to improve traffic issues in Sherman Oaks. We are working to balance the needs of our residential lifestyle with the needs of a large Metropolitan City that requires large amounts of transportation for work, business and overall lifestyle needs. 
The Sepulveda Transit Corridor, which is the funnel between the valley and Westside, is a large contributor to our traffic issues. Currently, METRO, which is a county wide organization, is planning a $10 Billion dollar project to alleviate this traffic choke point. There are 4 major plans being studied.  On Jan 28th a possible plan will be chosen at the METRO Board meeting, and we will have our time for public comment, before their next meeting. The solution they will implement will affect Sherman Oaks for many years in the future. Therefore a solution that includes what is best for Sherman Oaks should be considered

Our committee meets on the 2nd Wed of every month.
So Please Join us on March 10th at 7:30 pm for our next Virtual meeting. we will provide updates on the METRO Sepulveda Project. We will also be working on ways to improve our parking situations, and promoting our local DASH and improving our biking infrastructure.

If you are interested in learning more about alternative methods of transportation including DASH, riding a bike or learning about the future of the Sepulveda Metro Project, consider attending a Traffic & Transportation meeting. 

To access this Virtual Meeting on the Zoom Platform: please see Traffic & Transportation Committee page for agendas and webinar info.

Howard wants to hear from you! If you are reading this, you are indeed a Sherman Oaks stakeholder -- your input on the city budget and city services is important. Please contact Howard with questions, for further information or to provide input.
He is here to help you understand the Budget Advocates and what they do to help our community. If you want a copy of Budget Advocates Reports & Updates, please email Howard at or please visit for more information.
Subscribe to SONC's 
Early Notification System via Department of Neighborhood Empowerment to receive all agendas for both board meetings and committee meetings.

Interested in joining the LAPD Volunteer program?

Please contact Alan Scher for more information.

For more information about Van Nuys Neighborhood Watch News please visit this link.
Do you have questions?
The chairs have answers.
Click direct on each hyperlink to send an email.
Animal Welfare Committee
Email --

Board & Executive Committee

Education Committee

Finance Committee

Government Affairs Committee

Green & Sustainability Committee

Homeless Outreach Committee

Outreach Committee

Planning and Land Use (PLUM) and
Vision Sub-Committee

Public Safety Committee

Traffic & Transportation

General questions regarding committees?
Please email Howard Katchen at
Get Involved!
What interests you?

If you live, work, own property, own a business or belong to a non-profit organization, school or religious institution in Sherman Oaks, you are a stakeholder in Sherman Oaks. We hold monthly Board of Directors and various committee meetings which you are invited to attend to learn about and participate in your community. Join SONC's Mailing List today.