Look out Larchmont and Carthay, Los Angeles may have a new tiniest neighborhood. On Saturday, residents and stakeholders of the Arroyo Seco Neighborhood Council voted to allow Hermon—a Northeast Los Angeles community established in 1903 and annexed by the city in 1912—to branch off from the surrounding communities and form its own neighborhood council.
As Eastsider reports, 360 voters supported the new neighborhood council, while 186 voted against it. Helping things a bit, the only polling station available to voters was in Hermon.
At just over a half square mile in area, Hermon is around the same size as similarly minuscule neighborhoods like Carthay and Larchmont, but with only around 3,500 residents, it will be among the smallest regions with its own neighborhood council.
In 2012, EGP News noted that the community’s small size could be an impediment to gaining its own council. The city’s Department of Neighborhood Empowerment mandates that new neighborhood councils have at least 20,000 stakeholders.
But last year the City Council adopted a new Neighborhood Council subdivision process, paving the way for communities like Hermon to declare independence from councils encompassing multiple neighborhoods.
Hermon community leaders argued that the neighborhood should have its own council in order to “allow stakeholders to focus their attention and volunteer efforts primarily on the issues and concerns of their own, home community.”
In addition to more focused representation, a Hermon-specific council will also bring a bit more money for community improvement projects to the area. Each council currently receives $37,000 in annual funding from the city.
The success of the Hermon council closely follows the defeat of a proposed Skid Row Neighborhood Council earlier in the week. Advocates for that council hoped to bring more community-serving facilities to the area, like public restrooms and showers. The council was narrowly defeated, with 764 yes votes and 826 no votes.