The LookOut Letters to the Editor
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Wilmont Donors Not Hotel or Developer

September 19, 2012

Dear Editor,

Questions about Wilmont's payment of legal fees have been raised by people who are not members of the organization. The fees are being paid from a Wilmont account set up to handle legal expenses which have been incurred to preserve the integrity of the organization ("Santa Monica Neighborhood Group Has Private Donor," August 18, 2012). The fees are being paid by donors who believe loss of Wilmont's independent voice and actions would harm Santa Monica and the people who call it home. Anyone who wishes to help defray these expenses may contact the organization.

As a nonprofit organization, we do not have an obligation to disclose the names of our individual donors, and we respect the privacy of those individuals. In order to put certain speculations to rest, we will disclose that no contributions have been requested or made from any hotel, developer, or public relations organizations.

Further, accusations by certain non-members that our organization is in violation of the law because it has not provided information about our donors is false. The California corporation’s code requires that a member or director may inspect our records if they make a request in writing, at a reasonable time, and that information must be reasonably related to that individuals interest as a member. To date, no member has requested to inspect our books in writing. Furthermore, we would need to evaluate what purpose any request made would serve before providing that information.

At a recent event, Wilshire/Montana Neighborhood Coalition (Wilmont) announced that Wilmont's Annual Meeting will be held on October 20. At that time, elections for two Board positions whose terms are expiring will be conducted in accordance with the organization's Bylaws. The Wilmont Chair did not volunteer the time or location, and no one asked. Further information will be made available as part of the required membership notification.

Wilmont Board

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