15 Sep After Thoughtful Deliberation Wesson Assumes Temporary Oversight and Management Responsibilities of Council District 7
Citing the need to preserve community interests, Wesson pledges to keep watchful eye over district resources and purse strings
LOS ANGELES- In a move that will save taxpayers thousands of dollars and ensure residents of Council District 7 have equal access to city services, Los Angeles City Council President Herb J. Wesson, Jr. will manage the operations of the district pending city elections next spring. The forward-thinking move aimed at ensuring proper guardianship of district resources, comes days after former Councilmember Felipe Fuentes vacated his position leaving residents of Council District 7 without a voice.
“I love the Valley too much to let its residents go without representation until next year,” said Wesson who experienced firsthand what can happen to a council district when an appropriate custodian is not in place to protect a district’s resources. “Residents have my word that I will do whatever is necessary to ensure their district is protected and their interests are championed.”
In November 2005, after a vacancy left Council District 10 without elected representation, Wesson was appointed caretaker of the district warding off attempts to strip the district of crucial funds earmarked for resident services.
When vacancies arise, the Los Angeles City Charter grants the City Council several options including the authority to appoint a new Councilmember with voting rights or calling a special election to elect a new Councilmember which can burden taxpayers with over a million dollars in election related costs. Wesson will oversee the district until the primary nominating election scheduled for March 7, 2017 or if a runoff election is required then May 16. Wesson will introduce the attached resolution Friday, which if adopted, will state the City Council’s intention to appoint the winner of the election to fill the vacancy for the remainder of the current term.
Wesson’s decision comes after weeks of meetings with community stakeholders about the future of the district. After thoughtful consideration, Wesson ultimately chose to oversee the district himself in an effort to best serve local residents.