Greetings, Neighborhood Council Treasurers, Board Members, and stakeholders. I hope this week’s newsletter finds you all well.

We are listening!

Many of you have commented (both good and bad) on our new NC Checking Account System and we are taking your comments seriously and making updates and improvements to our forms and procedures. As changes are made, we will notify you via these newsletters, as well as posting a copy of the most recent form revisions, and other guides. Plus, make sure you check out our intensive new training schedule below. We’ll be in your area soon, so make sure to sign up to catch the latest. Please see below for other updates.


Armando Ruiz
Neighborhood Council Funding Program Director


· 10 days after your July NC Board Meeting – June Monthly Expenditure Reports due

Upcoming Funding Trainings

  • August 9, Harbor Regional Training – 8:00 am
  • August 21, City Hall, 20th Floor- 6:00 pm
  • September 4, Westside Regional – 6:00 pm
  • September 10, Treasurer’s Roundtable CD 12 – 4:00 pm
  • September 20, Congress

Funding Request Form – Pre Approval Checklist

Possibly one of the hottest topics with the new NC Checking Account System is how to use the Funding Request Form (FRF). When is it needed? When should the NC submit the form to the Department for Pre-Approval before issuing a payment? The answer to the first question is, always. Every expense issued from the NC Checking Account should have a Funding Request Form that has been completed for review and approval by your Board. Now the second question is trickier, since not every FRF requires pre-approval. In order to assist you with figuring out which requests need pre-approval, we have developed a checklist that will show you those categories of expenses, along with the documentation that should be submitted with the FRF. Remember, our new processing and turnaround time is 3-5 business days, before you are notified of the approval to pay out a vendor. For the checklist, please click here.

What About those Auto-Deducts?

As of July 1st, the Funding team has been working on contacting both the vendors as well as the Neighborhood Councils who regularly had their monthly operational costs sent to, and paid by the Department directly out of their appropriation accounts. The vendors have been notified to redirect all future invoices to the NC’s mailing address, and in turn, any invoices we received have been forwarded to the Treasurer/2nd Signers for them to pay out of the NC account. If for whatever reason the NC does not yet have access to their checking account (eg. Newly appointed Treasurer, etc) the Department will pay your invoices on your behalf out of the NC account and provide that information on our Check Tracker worksheet.

NC Checking Account Core User’s Guide

As part of our commitment to making the new checking account system easier to manage and navigate, the Funding team has released a new, quick hits guide. This 3 page document gives you the bare bones, need-to-know information on how to get access to your account, how to pay your bills, how to report expenses to the board, and a list of acceptable and disallowed expenditures. We hope this will give you the confidence to get up and running as soon as possible, but as always, when in doubt, please contact us for additional guidance.

Cash Request Form

Let’s talk about the Cash Request form. This is the simplest form of the new checking account system and it is used by the NC Treasurer or Signer when additional funds need to be added to your checking account. The Department deposited $4,000 seed money into each NC account in early July to get you going with funds to cover your operational expenses. If you need additional funds deposited into the account, you use the Cash Request Form to make that happen. All the Department needs is the form, completely filled out and signed by the Treasurer and 2nd Signer, and that’s it. No supporting documents, no invoices, flyers, permits, W-9’s, etc. are required for approval. So long as the form is complete, the NC is current on their MER’s, and their funds aren’t frozen, the Department will process your request and your funds will be deposited in 2-3 business days.

Union Bank Account Documents

In order for your NC to have a bank account opened, you must ensure that your Treasurer and 2nd Signer have completed all the necessary Union Bank documents. If you’ve had a change in Treasurer or 2nd Signer, you must complete new bank account documents by contacting the Funding Team right away.

2014-15 Budget Package

Please click here to review the 2014-2015 Budget Package instructions and requirements.

In-Person Funding Training

The Funding Team will be scheduling additional Checking Account Trainings. The next training is on August 21, 2014, from 6 – 9 pm in our downtown offices. We will also be scheduling additional trainings throughout different areas of Los Angeles to help Treasurers, Signers, and any other interested Board Members navigate the new NC Checking Account System. Please keep an eye out on our EmpowerLA Events calendar, as well as in these newsletters for specific date and location information as it becomes available.

Full Funding Training Video Available

As further evidence of the awesomeness that is our Department staff, we’re proud to introduce a full Treasurer’s Training video now available on our website. Thanks to the video and technical expertise of Sevak Paramazian and Arin Abedian, this training has much better sound, visuals, and special effects. Jessica Pua, Kathleen Quinn, and the one and only Betty Wong Oyama will guide you through the intricacies of the funding program while you watch from the comfort of your own home, bed, hammock, whatever! Once the fun is over, make sure you follow the link to register your attendance and receive credit for your newly enhanced knowledge of funding practices.