Following the Leader

a lineup of updates and tidbits Burbank and beyond

Archive for the ‘State Politics’ Category

L.A. Chamber picks Essel over Krekorian

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The Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce opted this week to support former Paramount Pictures executive Christine Essel over Assemblyman Paul Krekorian in a Dec. 8 runoff election for the Los Angeles City Council’s 2nd District, the Los Angeles Business Journal reported.

Krekorian outperformed Essel in Tuesday’s special election for the council seat, which was vacated this year by now-L.A. Controller Wendy Greuel, winning 34% of the 14,525 votes cast to Essel’s 28%. That race had 10 candidates, leaving considerable room for Essel and Krekorian to gain ground with voters leading up to the runoff.

If Krekorian wins the head-to-head battle, his move to L.A. will prompt an aggressive race to replace him from democratic and republican hopefuls, observers say. Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by Zain Shauk

September 25, 2009 at 8:17 am

Krekorian could vacate Assembly seat with LA Council win

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California state Assemblymember Paul Krekorian.

California state Assemblymember Paul Krekorian.

With Democratic Assemblyman Paul Krekorian campaigning for a win in a Los Angeles City Council election Tuesday, we’re turning our attention to the race, which could soon produce a special election for his replacement.

Krekorian is one of 10 candidates vying to fill a seat on the council vacated by now-L.A. City Controller Wendy Greuel.

Voters will head to the polls in the L.A.’s  2nd Council District, which represents a swath of the San Fernando Valley that stretches from Sherman Oaks to Tujunga.

That doesn’t include Burbank, where Krekorian had lived for much of his term in the Assembly and where he also represented part of L.A.’s District 2 before he relocated to Valley Glen this year.

Despite accusations of “carpetbagging,” he was initially considered one of three front-runners for the post — and still is — because of his political experience and financial backing.

But no clear favorite has so far emerged in the race, which has lasted about 10 weeks, and several community activists have gained significant traction in what most are expecting to be a close race.  Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zain Shauk

September 18, 2009 at 7:59 am

Krekorian on former Assemblyman Mike Duvall

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Credit: Duvall For Assembly

Credit: Duvall For Assembly

The Assembly Ethics Committee has 90 days to investigate the actions of former Assemblyman Mike Duvall, who resigned last week after recordings of him boasting about his sexual conquests surfaced.

Assemblyman Paul Krekorian, committee co-chairman, told the Associated Press that the panel would be able to call Duvall and the lobbyist who he described spanking.

While there could be a public hearing, Krekorian said that the focus would be on whether Duvall violated the Legislature’s code of ethics or standard of conflict rather than lurid details of his alleged extramarital affairs with two women.

“It’s not within our jurisdiction or within my interest to try to explore anyone’s personal morality,” Krekorian said, as lawmakers wrapped up a nine-month session early Saturday — although they are expected to meet in special sessions called by the governor. “Issues like that don’t justify an investigation by the ethics committee under the rules of this house.”

Written by Christopher Cadelago

September 13, 2009 at 12:50 am

Krekorian to host traffic and speeding forum

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Assemblyman Paul Krekorian (Roger Wilson/The Leader)

Assemblyman Paul Krekorian (Roger Wilson/The Leader)

Democratic Assemblyman Paul Krekorian will host a forum at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Buena Vista Library to address his Safe Streets Bill, which would give municipalities greater control over setting their own speed limits.

The bill was held in committee in May after registered opposition from statewide groups derailed support.

The forum will include information from transportation officials and an update from local law enforcement on street safety. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Cadelago

September 10, 2009 at 8:55 am

Schwarzenegger on Obama’s speech to schoolchildren: ‘Good idea’

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Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger looks over the photography of Burroughs High School students before giving a speech on state and local prevention efforts on the H1N1 virus. (Roger Wilson/The Leader)

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger looks over the photography of Burroughs High School students before giving a speech on state and local prevention efforts on the H1N1 virus. (Roger Wilson/The Leader)

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s speech Tuesday at John Burroughs High School came just hours after President Obama implored students across the country to set goals and aim high.

And despite protests from several Republican leaders and conservative groups, who said the speech amounted to “indoctrination,” Schwarzenegger called it a “good idea” for the president to address the nation’s schoolchildren.

“I wish that when I was in Austria that I had presidents and political leaders come to our classroom and talk about what was the secret for their success and so on,” he said, calling Obama a “good example, I think, [of someone] who came from nothing and worked his way up … against all odds.”

Check out the Burbank Leader’s website for the full story.

Written by Christopher Cadelago

September 8, 2009 at 5:00 pm

Bob Hope Airport bills for parking, gets IOUs

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Bob Hope Airport (Roger Wilson/Leader)

Bob Hope Airport (Roger Wilson/Leader)

Bob Hope Airport, which continues to see sluggish passenger counts despite having the third-lowest fares of the top 100 airports in the nation, recently received not one, but two IOUs from the state.

Dan Feger, executive director of the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority, last week informed commissioners that the state Senate and Assembly issued the airport separate IOUs for parking charges.

The Senate Rules Committee, which in February reached a parking agreement with the authority, racked up $2,574.

When airport officials called to inquire about the balance, the full amount was paid down using a state of California American Express credit card, Feger said. (As a side note when airport officials asked a state employee how their office planned to pay the credit card tab they were told an IOU would likely be issued, Feger said.)

The airport authority-Senate agreement specifically lists the issuance of an IOU as a breach of contract. The amount due from the Assembly Rules Committee, which reached a similar agreement in March, is $3,012. Feger said he was told by another state employee that the Assembly doesn’t have the same resources as the Senate. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Cadelago

August 9, 2009 at 9:45 pm

Should Congress expand ‘clunkers’ program?

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Creative Commons

Creative Commons

Dealers are praising the federal “cash for clunkers” program for doubling foot traffic and growing sales, but some senators are on the fence about expanding the $1-billion program by an additional $2 billion.

While some lawmakers argue that the program has been an important economic stimulus, others say an expansion would serve to unfairly benefit one industry.

We’ve heard strong support for program expansion from local dealerships, but what do you think? Should the “clunkers” program should be expanded to three times its original value?

Some clunkers details:

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Zain Shauk

August 4, 2009 at 8:54 am