Winning Night for LA City Council Incumbents, LAUSD Board Members in Runoff - NBC Southern California

Winning Night for LA City Council Incumbents, LAUSD Board Members in Runoff

Jose Huizar swatted aside a challenge from former LA County Supervisor Gloria Molina to retain his 14th District seat in the evening's headline result.

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    Election Tuesday: Huizar Retains Council Seat

    Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar fended off a spirited challenge from ex-Supervisor Gloria Molina to retain his 14th District seat. Conan Nolan reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Tuesday, March 3, 2015. (Published Wednesday, March 4, 2015)

    It was a winning night for Los Angeles City Council incumbents Tuesday, but several LAUSD board members will have to compete in a runoff.

    Jose Huizar swatted aside a challenge from former LA County Supervisor Gloria Molina to retain his 14th District seat in the evening's headline result.

    His battle with Molina, billed a heavyweight bout between two Eastside political veterans, was more of a one-sided knockout.

    Huizar grabbed a commanding lead when vote-by-mail ballots were tallied, and never looked back. He will return for his third and final term representing the district that stretches from Boyle Heights to downtown Los Angeles.

    His victory came despite his most recent term being  marred by sexual harassment allegations.

    In the eastern San Fernando Valley's 6th District, incumbent Nury Martinez emerged victorious in a rematch with former Assemblywoman Cindy Montanez, who was the top vote-getter in the 2013 primary election to complete Tony Cardenas' unexpired term, but lost in a runoff election upset.

    Herb Wesson, who represents the 10th Council District, cruised to victory over Koreatown activist Grace Yoo, who had previously clashed with the council president during contentious proceedings to redraw district lines in Koreatown. 

    Councilman Paul Krekorian also held onto his early lead in his bid for a second term representing the 2nd District, which includes North Hollywood, Studio City, Valley Village and Van Nuys, against challenger Eric Preven, a television writer who regularly spurs heated debate at City Council and County Board of Supervisor meetings.

    Councilman Mitch Englander ran unopposed in the 12th District, which includes Reseda, North Hills, Northridge, Chatsworth and Porter Ranch.

    In the 8th District, Marqueece Harris-Dawson, a former executive director of a nonprofit founded by Rep. Karen Bass to improve economic conditions in South Los Angeles communities, defeated three other candidates to replace termed-out Councilman Bernard Parks.

    The race to replace termed-out Tom LaBonge in the 4th District will move to a May 19 runoff election, with 14 candidates splitting the vote and preventing any candidate from earning the more than 50 percent needed to win the seat outright.

    Carolyn Ramsay, who is hoping to succeed her former boss, led the pack of hopefuls in the Fourth District, and unofficial results released by the City Clerk's Office showed David Ryu, a director at the Kedren Acute Psychiatric Hospital and Community Health Center, placing second and appearing to earn a runoff spot.

    The council members elected today will serve five-and-a-half-year terms. The passage of Charter Amendment 1 will mean a one-time lengthening of the terms of city and school board officials elected in the 2015 and 2017 elections, with future elections being held in even-numbered years.

    Meanwhile Los Angeles Unified School District board members Tamar Galatzan, Bennett Kayser and Richard Vladovic will have to compete in a May 19 runoff election as they fight to retain their seats, while incumbent George McKenna won re-election thanks to having no challengers.

    The school board will have to tackle some tough issues in the coming months. It is still searching for a permanent superintendent, since Ramon Cortines was appointed merely on an interim basis to replace John Deasy. The district is also locked in difficult contract negotiations with the teachers' union, United Teachers Los Angeles, with the possibility of a strike looming as educators push for higher salaries and smaller class sizes.

    City News Service contributed to this report

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