Local Politics: Looking Past November 4 to March 3

West Hollywood City Council Chambers
West Hollywood City Council Chambers

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated to include the recently announced candidacy of Lindsey Horvath for a seat on the West Hollywood City Council.

At the moment, most political aficionados in West Hollywood are focused on the Nov. 4 general election. Will former Santa Monica Mayor Bobby Shriver or former state Senator Sheila Kuehl win the 3rd District seat on the L.A. County Board of Supervisors? Will West Hollywood City Councilmember Jeffrey Prang defeat John Morris, the deputy district attorney, in the race for county Assessor? Will attorney and Santa Monica-Malibu School Board member Ben Allen or attorney and activist Sandra Fluke, a West Hollywood resident, be the new District 26 state Senator?

But an election that could be much more of a game-changer for West Hollywood will take place only four months later on March 3. Seats held by longtime Councilmembers John Heilman and Abbe Land and relative newcomer Mayor John D’Amico, first elected in 2011, are in play. If Prang wins the Assessor seat, he’ll have to resign his Council seat by Dec. 31, which means the Council will be left to decide whether to appoint someone to fill the two remaining years of his term or to put the position on the March 3 ballot. That means an unprecedented four seats may be up for grabs on the five-member Council.

So far 11 candidates have filed the paperwork required to run for the City Council. However one of them, Lucas John Junkin, has told WEHOville that unless Prang’s seat becomes available, he’ll withdraw from the race so as not to take votes away from more senior challengers to the long-time incumbents.

“This isn’t about my ego,” he said. “It’s about inciting a positive change on the Council, and at this time I feel like I can better serve the bigger picture by supporting someone else with more momentum.

“I encourage Duke, Cole and some of the other newer faces to step down with me,” Junkin said, referring to declared candidates Duke Mason and Cole Ettman.

In addition to Junkin, Ettman and Mason, others who have declared their candidacy as of this writing are D’Amico, Heilman, Disabilities Advisory Board member and local retailer Larry Block, former City Councilmember and current Transportation Commission member Lindsey Horvath, former Planning Commissioner Lauren Meister, Sunset Gower Studios security executive director Matthew Fritch, city staffer Mike Gerle and Planning Commissioner Heidi Shink. Ettman, who manages a law firm, is a member of the city’s Public Facilities Commission. Mason is an actor and writer. Junkin is publisher of WeHoConfidential.com and an event promoter. No word yet on whether Councilmember Land will run for re-election.

While the 11 candidates already have filed statements declaring their intention to run, the formal nomination period begins Nov. 10 and ends on Dec. 5. That deadline would be extended to Dec. 10 if Land should choose not to file for re-election.

Those interested in running for the Council must contact City Clerk Yvonne Quarker at (323) 848-6409 to schedule an appointment to receive nomination papers.

Candidates also must file a Candidate Intention Statement prior to raising or spending campaign money. And when a candidate receives $1,000 or more in campaign contributions, he or she must file a Statement of Organization with Quarker’s office.

For those of us who just want to vote, the deadline for registering to vote for the March 3 election is Feb. 16. Registration can be done online.


newest oldest
Notify of
Guy Privaton (@guyprivaton)
Guest

To Former Candidate Lucas, bravo. I see too many pundits and self promoters on the list of those running. People that have been hanging around for ever and on the ballot often. (Not you Lucas.)

WeHo needs new blood. The only way to get it is to narrow the list down.

BlueEyedBoy
Guest
BlueEyedBoy

Mike Dunn, I’m talking about candidates for elective office. From what you have described about working for the MTA, I wonder how many candidates for elective office have ever had that kind of real life experience and the discipline to keep a job like that? I don’t think Sheila Kuehl has ever done anything but “feed at the public trough” and call it “service”. There are other current candidates whose real life experience seems to me to be pretty short. What is it that qualifies them to be our leaders, really?

mike dunn
Guest
mike dunn

Blue Eyrd Boy While I agree with you concerning most government jobs, working at the MTA in transportation is probably the most demanding jobs you will ever find. Call in sick to many times your terminated. Showing up over 30 seconds late could lead to termination if it becomes a habit. Can’t find a baby sitter, that’s your problem. Need to stay home for a plumber, must give one weeks notice and then must be approved. Bottom line, show up on time everyday or look somewhere else for a job. Accidents, rudeness, schedule violations, rule violations will get you terminated.… Read more »

BlueEyedBoy
Guest
BlueEyedBoy

I would like to see the work records of every candidate, and follow up to confirm their accuracy (not just the candidates word for it). How did they perform on every job they had, what were their responsibilities, and what were the circumstances of the separation from each of those jobs? In other words, what real life experience do they have, or have they always fed at the public trough? Are they, maybe, a “public servant” because they don’t know how to do anything, or don’t have the discipline to show up at a job when they are expected to,… Read more »

mike dunn
Guest
mike dunn

You misunderstood me. I consider all contributions as bribes.

ambiguousbodywork
Guest

They are bribes. What a mess this has all become.

Rudolf Martin
Guest
Rudolf Martin

mike dunn, contributing money to avoid bribed government seems counterintuitive.

how about recusing council members from voting on projects that involve contributors (or their subsidiaries, including PAC contributions)?
a similar rule regarding potential bias is good enough for the Supreme Court, surely our small town council members, who built themselves chambers seemingly modeled after the Supreme Court, could abide by this most basic ethics rule?

Rudolf Martin
Guest
Rudolf Martin

BlueEyedBoy, god bless you.

BlueEyedBoy
Guest
BlueEyedBoy

Rudolf Martin, the reward I expect for my contribution is competent, level-headed, non-agendized, not ego driven leadership of the city in which I live.

Woody McBreairty
Guest

I don’t think it’s fair to make it more difficult to run because you don’t like the candidates who are running. That’s a very Republican gesture like they are doing in the south, making it more difficult to vote because they don’t like who’s voting. I just wish that so many people wouldn’t use the system like it was a fun thing to do & they enjoy the attention. It is not good judgment or common sense. If they really cared about the city, they would jump into & support the campaign(s) of the candidate(s) they like & feel are… Read more »

Rudolf Martin
Guest
Rudolf Martin

mike dunn, if you can’t be rewarded then what’s the point of contributing money?

mike dunn
Guest
mike dunn

Rudolf Martin
Hopefully good government instead of a bribed government.

mike dunn
Guest
mike dunn

Ten signatures? How long could that take, ten minutes at most? I agree, 100 signatures seems more reasonable.

I’m not a lawyer and know campaign contributions are legal but perhaps we could make it illegal for a council person to vote on a measure that would reward a person or corporation that contributed to their campaign. After all, in reality, campaign contributions are nothing more than a bribe.

Rudolf Martin
Guest
Rudolf Martin

No howling here, Chris Sanger! 100 (or 200) signatures from registered voters would be a reasonable threshold to prevent a freak show and at least a start toward getting more people to show an interest in voting. John Heilman and Jeff Prang appointed themselves as an Election Reform Subcommittee but couldn’t find the time to even talk once for a year. The sad fact is that most incumbents will do what is best for them, not what is best for our city. John D’Amico might be the exception as the only incumbent who supports our right to know who sponsors… Read more »