It’s official: In May 2013, the City approved the Amapas Junta Vecinal! With the same geographic boundaries as the ANA, but representing all colonia residents (not just ANA members), our Junta Vecinal is entitled to special recognition and cooperation with the City and its many departments – all facilitated by the Office of Citizen Participation.
While this won’t automatically solve all our problems, it should make it much easier for us to get official City attention and enter into public-private partnerships on things like landslide cleanup and our much-needed street-improvements.
Among other things, the Amapas Junta Vecinal has the right and obligation to review – and approve or disapprove – anything new or unusual in our colonia. This includes new business licenses, special events, the display of advertising banners, etc. Most activities that require a City permit must now be first signed-off by the Junta Vecinal. It’s a way to help ensure local control over local happenings.
The Junta will soon begin regular monthly meetings, open to all residents, and attended by Citizen Participation Representative Aby Rodriguez, who will act as our liason with City departments. Look for further announcements as the Junta gets organized this summer.
The Amapas Junta Vecinal will work hand-in-glove with the Amapas Neighborhood Association because we share the same goals and priorities. We also share many of the same officers and vocales. They are: Tom Swale, president; Don Pickens, treasurer; Myrna Morton-Brown, secretary; Gene Mendoza, vocal; Ben Schatz, vocal; Jae Palsce, vocal; Melissa Suneson, vocal.
Why have two separate neighborhood organizations? The Junta has the official ‘juice’ to arrange City meetings and get things done, but no money; the ANA has the organization, communications, dedicated members…and your annual membership dues & contributions to maintain the Patrol car, repair the streets, etc. Each organization, by itself, is pretty powerless. Together, they’re a powerhouse working to get things done for Amapas.