Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council May 2021: Issue #5
Spring into action and Vote!
SONC Election 2021
Candidate Q & A

Candidates for Area 1 Residential:

Candidates for Area 2 Business:

Candidates for Area 5 Residential:

Candidates for Area 7 Business:

Candidates for Area 7 Residential:
SONC Monthly Meetings
for May 2021

May 4th, 2021, 6pm

May 5th, 2021

May 6th, 2021, 6:30pm

May 10th, 2021, 6:30pm

May 11th, 2021, 6:30pm

May 12th, 2021
To view webinar details,
please visit the calendar.

May 17th, 2021, 7pm

May 18th, 2021, 7pm

May 20th, 2021, 6:30pm

May 25th, 2021, 7pm

May 26th, 2021, 6:30pm

Please visit the committee
pages for agendas.

*=Visit Committee page to confirm date & 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.

Spring is here. COVID vaccinations are more readily available. Restrictions on schools and businesses are being relaxed. We are hopeful.

Two items I’d like you to focus on this month. (1) the SONC Elections, May 11th – you are deciding who will represent you on the Neighborhood Council. And (2) nominations for Youth Representative on the Board.
Returning to Normal

We are all hopeful. Los Angeles is making progress. Vaccinations are now open to everyone 16 years old or older. 
Restrictions are being eased.  Schools are opening to in-person classes.  Restaurants are “more” open.  Yes, we are hopeful.  BUT we aren’t there yet.

If you haven’t done it yet, get vaccinated. Be cautious and continue to wear masks when in crowded places – even if you are fully vaccinated. Just for now. Just to be extra safe.

Jeffrey Hartsough
President of SONC
Community Interest 2
SONC Election Day is May 11
Thank you to all the candidates who have stepped up and are running for seats on the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council (SONC). We look forward to your participation in SONC and our community whether you are elected or not.

And thanks to all of you who have attended the Candidate Forums. The forums have been an opportunity to get to know the candidates a little better. The last candidate forum is on Friday, May 7, at 7:00pm. Check the calendar on the SONC website ( for information on how to attend.

By now I hope you have your Vote-By-Mail ballot. The last day to request a Vote-By-Mail ballot is Tuesday, May 4th. And getting that Vote-By-Mail ballot hasn’t been easy. Vote-By-Mail ballots need to be postmarked by May 11 – the official Election Day.

This election, and especially in this time of COVID, its clear that SONC needs to make it easier for you, our stakeholders, to vote. We’ll be working on that before the next election.

First, who can you vote for?
Let’s address the “who can vote for whom” question. The SONC by-laws provide that voting is by Area. There are 7 Areas within the geographic boundaries of the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council. As an example, if you live, work, or have a community interest in Area 1, then you can only vote for Area 1 candidates. You would not be able to vote for a friend who is a candidate running in Area 7. The LA City Clerk provides details about who can vote and what documentation is required in the 2021 NC Documentation Guide.  

Second, Get your ballot. Today.
As mentioned, elections this year are all Vote-By-Mail elections. It seems simple. Get your ballot. Mark your ballot. Mail your ballot. That’s about right, but it’s more complex.

There are three steps to getting a ballot:

(1) Determine which Area you want to vote in. If you live in one Area but work in a different Area, you need to choose which Area you want to vote in. You can only vote in one Area. Here is a map of the SONC area boundaries.

(2) Register and apply for a ballot. This can be done online at the Vote-By-Mail Application Portal. Or by submitting a paper application.  

(3) Submit documentation showing that you qualify to vote. This documentation is submitted as part of the applications for a ballot when using the Vote-By-Mail Application Portal. If applying using a paper application, the documentation is sent with the paper application. 2021 NC Documentation Guide

Once you get your ballot, mark your ballot and then mail your ballot.

The City Clerk’s website Neighborhood Council Elections has more information for you to review. Take a look at the Vote-By-Mail Application page and the three videos that help explain the Vote-By-Mail process.

Important Dates:
May 4, 2021, 5:00pm – Ballot applications must be received by the City Clerk. Don't wait – do it now.

May 11, 2021 – Ballots must be postmarked no later than May 11th. A postage pre-paid envelope will be sent to you along with your ballot.

It is important that you vote. Please be persistent and allow enough time to complete the process.  

Youth Representative -- Nominations
This is a call for nominations of qualified students who would like to be appointed as the Youth Representative on the Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council for the period July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022.

The Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council has a Youth Representative seat on the Board that is reserved for a high school student. The Youth Representative is appointed each year and serves on the Board for the fiscal year, beginning July 1st and ending June 30th.

To be eligible the candidate must be “A high school student who attends school or resides within the boundaries of the Neighborhood Council, and who is at least 14 years and no more than 17 years of age on the day of the election or selection.”

Please email nominations, name and contact information, to me at

Our committees continue working on issues that are important to the quality of life in Sherman Oaks. Please read about what they are doing in this Newsletter and become involved. Thanks for being interested in our community. 

Please continue to be thoughtful of and kind to others. It makes a difference. Even without those caused by the pandemic, we all face daily challenges. We need each other’s support.

Stay safe, healthy, and in good spirits.

 -- Jeffrey Hartsough
Check out Voter Guide here:
Not sure what area you live in and who your
Sherman Oaks Neighborhood Council representative is? Email with your address or cross-streets with the 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 12, 2020, 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. In May 2020, SONC began to hold “virtual” meetings. These “virtual” meetings are held by way of teleconferences and video conferences. 

Information about the meetings and how to “join in” is available on the SONC website: Please give us your feedback and comments. 

The next SONC Board meeting
is on May 10th, 2021.
We hope you join us.

Webinar ID: 85140543942
Telephone: 1-669-900-6833, enter 85140543942 #
SONC Board Meeting November 9th, 2020
May 10th, 2021 -- SONC Board Meeting

The agenda will be available on May 7th, 2021 on the SONC website,

To join SONC's virtual board meeting on
May 10th, 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.
To sign up, 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.

Last Day to Register to vote is May 4th, 5pm

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.

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 community.

Vote by Mail Registration deadline:
May 4th, 2021, 5pm 

Election Day: May 11, 2021

Save the Date:
Friday Night
Spotlight on the Candidates

Please join the conversation and meet your candidates for the final time!

To access this Virtual Meeting on the Zoom Platform:
Webinar ID: 862 7646 0314
Telephone: 1-833-548-0282 enter 862 7646 0314 #

Friday, May 7th, 7:00pm Candidate Forum
Featuring All Candidates

*The forum will be Live on Zoom and/or recorded.

Questions, please reply to
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.

For more information please visit,

Stay connected:
IG: @TheValleyofChange
Twitter: @ValleyChange

L.A. Works

Join L.A. Works and learn about all the volunteer opportunities available here in our great City of Los Angeles!

Facebook - @laworks 
Twitter - @LAWorksNow 
Instagram - @laworksnow 

Please visit
VISION & PLUM Committee -- Jeff Kalban, Chair
This is not the only train rushing down the tracks to destroy Sherman Oaks!
Come on people get MAD…Metro is threating our community with above ground trains that will wipe out countless single family homes, condos and apartments from Sepulveda and Valley Vista
up the entire length of Sherman Oaks and into Van Nuys. 45 Trains an hour roaring 30 to 40 feet above our streets. The intense noise racket will travel at least half a mile and the structure supporting the tracks will take away traffic lanes. What kind of elected official allows such a destructive proposal to go forward? Tell Councilmember Raman and Mayor Garcetti that you will not stand for this!
At the same time the State is proposing bills that will do away with single family zoning. Making every residential property in Sherman Oaks multifamily…that’s right, a 10 unit apartment house will be able to be built on every lot and you can do nothing about it if we let these bills get passed. SHOUT, DEMONSTRATE, WRITE LETTERS…tell Senator Hertzberg and Assemblymember Nazarian that they MUST vote no and that you will not let your community and your home be destroyed by SB 9 and SB 10. 
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. We will be discussing the Community Plan Updates, Metro, the State housing bills and real solutions to the affordable housing crisis.

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:
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:

SONC Education Committee has been so fortunate to present engaging speakers for three separate events. George Lipsitz kicked off the program in October, Martinique Starnes joined us in December and just last month Victor Narro and Janna Shadduck-Hernandez co-presented. All of these free virtual (zoom) offerings were recorded and are available on the SONC website. If you were unable to attend our live events – no worries! You can access all three at at your convenience. Each guest provided a well-researched, dynamic and engaging hour related to our theme of racial disparities in housing, education and labor. Our final speaker of this inaugural series with Fritzi Horstman who joined us on April 24th at 2 pm. Fritzi is the Founder and Director of the Compassion Prison Project ( and will discuss her work with compassionate advocacy. We hope you will be able to virtually attend! This was our last event for our first “season” of speakers. We will pick back up again in the Fall with a new series and a new theme that will be announced in the near future. 
Our goal is this year was to provide a forum to bridge social science professionals and interested neighbors who hope to gain deeper insight into differences of all kinds based on ethnicity with an interest in cultivating a more understanding, engaged and connected community!

If you have a suggestion for us regarding future speakers or general topics of interest - please let us know! We’d love to hear from you. And if you or anyone you know would like to get involved with SONC or the Education Committee…all you have to do is ask! Reach out, introduce yourself and let your voice be heard! More than anything we want to serve this community we all love and we welcome all interested neighbors to be a part of building a better future here in Sherman Oaks!

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. 

We are also working with local Sherman Oaks schools to help to facilitate beautification projects. We hope to assist by helping to connect local mural artists with schools as requested by administrators. Updates soon!

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 March 8, 2021 meeting the SONC Board adopted several items from the Government Affairs committee, including a commitment and support for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training in the Neighborhood Council system (CF 20-0990); support for an investigation into city employee involvement in the January 6 insurrection on the US Capitol (CF 21-0051); LADOT's legislative proposals for 2021-22 including measures designed to increase road safety (CF 21-0002-S8); and advocating for Sherman Oaks' position relative to air traffic, noise, and pollution in supporting creation of a Van Nuys Airport (VNY) IFP Gateway Request Working Group with the goal of compelling FAA to modify its departure procedures at VNY, instituted several years ago without input, adequate notice, or consideration for the community's concern.

Pursuant to the March 8 motion, is now officially SONC's position that FAA failed to disclose key findings, facts, and other information and failed to use such information in assessing and ultimately implementing what has become a significantly detrimental and unpopular NextGen program at VNY and BUR, and we now seek remedies, including a new supplemental environmental assessment, as the next step to stand up for Sherman Oaks, which has been disproportionately harmed by FAA's actions. We have requested Los Angeles District 4 Councilmember Nithya Raman assist us in this endeavor.

At its March 23, 2021 meeting, the Government Affairs Committee discussed City Council's motion regarding CARE+ Cleanups at homeless encampments (CF 21-0031) and Asian American / Pacific Islanders / Hate Crimes / Discrimination / Harassment / Violence items CF 21-0002-S61 and CF 21-0264.

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, May 18th, 2021 at 7pm. We will be continuing the discussion of our 2021 Community Programming.
Outreach has been very busy this Spring, from the website upgrade (almost finished...fingers crossed)-- thank you committee members, Harold Shapiro and Gil Imber for taking the reigns, to a Care-kit program for our neighbors experiencing homelessness -- huge thanks to Kira Durbin and Pamela Harris for making this project happen and finally, the SONC 2021 Elections -- Candidate Info Sessions, Candidate Forums, Voter Guides & the Get Out the Vote campaign. Speaking of voting, we want you to vote! Make your voice heard and select the representative you want elevating your voice! Please see President Hartsough's message for details.

Do you want to contribute your ideas to the Outreach Committee? We are a dynamic group of strong personalities willing to work together for the common good. I know, it sounds like a super hero squad doesn't it?! But in all seriousness, we are passionate individuals who are making projects come to life no matter the obstacles we face, we face it together. Do you consider yourself someone who cares about Sherman Oaks, is creative and willing to go the extra mile? Then please, come to our regular meeting, submit your public comment, introduce yourself and let's make it happen! We are always looking for extra hands to take on the roles of Outreach, including communications and community programming.

Also, there are at least 3 different opportunities/platforms to get involved with YOUR community, please see our partner organization ads including The Valley of Change, L.A. Works and North Hollywood Interfaith Food Pantry. 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
Jenna Lewis

The Public Safety Committee meets the 2nd Tuesday of every month.

If you have any questions, please email at:

The April SONC Public Safety meeting featured a presentation by Neighborhood Prosecutor Andy Soliman. Mr. Soliman gave us a great rundown on the differences between the City Attorney and District Attorney offices, and a thorough explanation
of the Neighborhood Prosecutor program. Mr. Soliman answered audience questions about crime rates in Sherman Oaks and how we can better protect ourselves and our loved ones. He addressed the rise of vehicle break-ins in Sherman Oaks, and advised that everyone lock their cars and remove all visible items from their vehicles. Mr. Soliman's presentation was recorded and will be uploaded on our site.

Our Helpful Safety Tip of the month focused on protecting electronics that are left in vehicles. Did you know that even if you hide your electronics in the trunk, thieves can still detect their presence using Bluetooth scanning apps? To prevent this, either bring your electronics with you when you leave your car, or make sure they are turned off or in airplane mode.

Our next meeting will be next Tuesday, May 11, 2021 at 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 Green and Sustainability committee is working on raising awareness regarding native landscaping, which requires less water and can still look beautiful. We are balancing water conservation while keeping with the style and preferences in the esthetics of our neighborhood.
We are also working on a list to promote Green and Environmentally friendly businesses in Sherman Oaks. We also are working hard to preserve our tree covers which make our neighborhood more enjoyable. We don't just focus on our neighborhood but we also work hard to take a stand on City Council Activities and Files. This month we will be discussing the new rules on Oil extraction in our city, the new expectation of LADWP in regards to renewable energy and the future of single use plastics in our City.

Our Committee meetings are on the first Wed of every month. The next meeting will be on May 5th, so please join us for our next Virtual meeting to help with local and city wide issues.

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

Traffic and Transportation Committee
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. Last month we took action to pressure our city council to spend the funds on projects that provide results to improve traffic in Sherman Oaks. 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 now 5 major options being studied. METRO has voted for funds to study the options. We have taken action in the past to promote an underground option only. 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 May 12th 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

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.

Please visit this link to view the mid-month report update provided with the recent passage in Congress of the American Rescue Plan Act under which Los Angeles will receive reimbursement for Covid related and other expenses which will offset the budget deficit.

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.
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.