Represent! | Politics, government and public life for Southern California

LA elects new city attorney, controller and 3 city councilmen

Carmen Trutanich on primary night, Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Maya Sugarman/KPCC

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013

Election Day in Los Angeles resulted in incumbent city attorney Carmen Trutanich being ousted, a new fiscal watchdog and three new faces on the city council. And a special election for a fourth seat guaranteed that the next council will not be populated only by men. 

Four years after roaring into office as a maverick politician promising to upend City Hall, Trutanich was thrown out of the city attorney's office. Voters chose former state Assemblyman Mike Feuer to replace Trutanich, who was seeking a second four-year term as city attorney.

The final tally in Feuer's favor was 62 to 38 percent.

It’s unusual for an incumbent city attorney to lose a re-election bid. Trutanich’s downfall may have had its roots in his failed run for L.A. County district attorney last year, after promising voters he’d serve two terms as city attorney. The loss weakened him, politically.


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LA voters opt to limit marijuana dispensaries

A man smokes a marijuana cigarrette in Montevideo on December 7, 2012.
Pablo Porciuncula/AFP/Getty Images

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013

Los Angeles city voters Tuesday decided to dramatically limit the number of medical marijuana dispensaries, approving Measure D by a 63 to 37 margin.

The measure allows only the 135 dispensaries that registered with the city before September 2007 to remain open. Hundreds of others must close immediately. In addition, the remaining dispensaries must locate themselves at least 1,000 feet from schools, and employees will now undergo criminal background checks. 

Those dispensaries also face an increase in taxes — rising to $60 per $1,000 of gross receipts.  

A majority of the city council supported Measure D. The United Food and Commercial Workers union, which is organizing dispensary employees, also campaigned for it.

Measure F, which would have allowed an unlimited number of dispensaries, failed 59 to 41 percent.  Measure E, which was abandoned by supporters, also failed.


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Live blog: Garcetti speaks like a winner; Trutanich concedes city attorney's race

Eric Garcetti shakes the hands of one of his supporters at the Palladium in Hollywood, Calif. on May 21st, 2013.
Mae Ryan/KPCC

Los Angeles Mayor race 2013Update: Eric Garcetti elected mayor of Los Angeles; Wendy Greuel concedes 

Update 12:20 a.m.: Trutanich concedes to Feuer

Shortly before midnight, City Attorney Carmen Trutanich conceded the race to former Assemblyman Mike Feuer, Trutanich's spokesman John Schwada said.

Feuer had nearly 61 percent of the votes, with about 12 percent of the city's precincts having been counted. 

The campaign had been a bitter one, with Trutanich filing an Ethics Commission complaint against Feuer midway through the race, alleging Feuer was receiving unfair help in the form of discounted campaign services from a consultant. Feuer countered with a complaint that Trutanich was violating city campaign rules by sending too many official emails. — Sharon McNary

Update 12:10 a.m.: Garcetti takes the stage


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Which revenue picture will state lawmakers use for public schools?

State Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), chairs of the Senate budget committee, wants a spending plan that will trigger increases if revenue projections are met.
The San Francisco Sentinel

State lawmakers took a closer look Tuesday at Governor Jerry Brown’s revised spending plan for public schools.  One of the key questions they’re wrangling with is how much they’ll actually have to spend.

After years of budget deficits and cuts to school districts and community colleges, the state of California is sitting on a surplus.  Brown’s fiscal team estimates it’s $2.8 billion, but the legislature’s fiscal analyst thinks its closer to $6 billion.    

“We do think our revenue estimates are a better reflection of what’s going on in the financial markets right now,” said Ed Cabral of the analyst’s office. But, he cautioned, that figure isn’t bullet proof.  “So if our revenue estimates are wrong, and you build your budget according to our estimates, then there is some risk there.” 


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Bumps in the road to House immigration agreement

"Gang of Eight" member Xavier Becerra (D-LA) insists House immigration deal is not dead
Kitty Felde

The U.S. Senate continued to debate amendments to a comprehensive immigration bill Tuesday. Meanwhile, in the House, Republicans are grumbling that Democratic leadership is throwing up roadblocks to the deal hammered out by the bipartisan group of lawmakers known as the "Gang of Eight." Some suggest Democrats would rather take the Senate version than the compromise reached in the House.

According to a report in Politico, Democratic leaders don't like language in the House bill that requires the 11 million immigrants on the path to citizenship to pay for their own health care.

Minority Whip Stenny Hoyer told reporters that if the House "Gang of Eight" doesn't have a bill, then the Senate's measure "ought to be considered." The number three House Democrat, L.A.'s Xavier Becerra — one of those "Gang of Eight" members — brushes off that scenario: "We're on the precipice of getting to do something really good." 


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