Kathleen Miles is the executive editor of Noema Magazine. She can be reached on Twitter at @mileskathleen.
LA voters will choose the next mayor of Los Angeles Tuesday. They will also vote on three measures seeking to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries and on a measure to support overturning the Supreme Court Citizens United ruling.
In what has become a contentious and expensive race, Councilman Eric Garcetti leads Controller Wendy Greuel by seven points, according to a USC/LA Times poll conducted May 14-16. Most polls found Garcetti in the lead but one conducted April 29 to May 7 by Cal State LA found a virtual tie, with 46 percent for Greuel and 45 percent for Garcetti.
See below for a primer on each candidate race and measure on the ballot. Check huffpostla.com for breaking updates as election results come out, beginning at about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday.
CITY ATTORNEYCurrent City Attorney Carmen Trutanich faces Assemblymember Mike Feuer in a close race for city attorney. Feuer has criticized Trutanich’s track record, and Trutanich has claimed that Feuer does not have enough courtroom experience. Feuer leads Trutanich by an 11-point margin (35 to 24 percent), according to the Cal State LA poll.
CITY CONTROLLERThe leading candidate is Councilman Dennis Zine, who has represented a district in the San Fernando Valley for 12 years. He has the backing of several large labor unions, several council colleagues and Villaraigosa. Zine’s opponents have accused him of “double dipping” with a $100,000 annual pension for his 33 years with the LAPD and a nearly $180,000 council salary. He has responded by saying that he gives a large portion of his police pension to charities.
Opposing candidate Ron Galperin, a lawyer, has served on the LA Comission on Revenue Efficiency and the LA Quality and Productivity Commission. He is endorsed by the LA Times, Daily News and La Opinion. Zine leads Galperin by 15 points (33 to 18 percent), according to the Cal State LA poll.
LA COMMUNITY COLLEGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES, SEAT 6In the May primary race, school board member David Vela received 35 percent of the vote and community college trustee Nancy Pearlman received 29 percent in their race for the community college board. Pearlman is endorsed by the LA Times; Vela is endorsed by American Federation of Teachers. Click here to see their answers to questions about their priorities and experience.
CITY COUNCILMEMBER, 1ST DISTRICTCouncilman Ed Reyes’s chief of staff Jose Gardea is competing for the east LA City Council seat with State Senator Gil Cedillo. The LA Times has endorsed Gardea, and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has endorsed Cedillo.
PROPOSITION CProposition C is a ballot measure urging Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United ruling, which says that restriction of political spending by corporations or labor unions violates free speech.
The ballot measure states that there should be limits on political campaign spending and that “corporations should not have the constitutional rights of human beings.” It instructs “Los Angeles elected officials and area legislative representatives to promote that policy through amendments to the United States Constitution.”
The campaign for the proposition is being led by political watchdog Common Cause, in partnership with the California Public Interest Research Group and the Money Out/Voters In Coalition.
Common Cause began a campaign in November to get cities and states to pass ballot measures instructing Congress to support a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United. So far, Montana, Colorado and more than 175 cities, including Chicago, San Francisco, and more than half the cities in Massachusetts, have passed such measures by a popular vote.
The LA proposition has been endorsed by both mayoral candidates, Councilman Eric Garcetti and Controller Wendy Greuel; by the LA Coalition of Neighborhood Councils; and by dozens of organizations and elected officials. It received a “yes” endorsement from the LA Daily News and La Opinion.
PROPOSITION D, MEASURES E & FMeasures D, E, and F all seek to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries.
Proposition D would allow about 135 dispensaries to remain open and would force closure of the others. It is supported by both mayoral candidates, both city attorney candidates and the LA Times.
In addition to limiting the number of dispensaries, the LA Times reports, Prop D would:
1) increase the gross receipts tax on their operations to $60 per $1,000 of gross receipts2) set operation hour limits (must be closed between 8 p.m. and 10 a.m.)3) prohibit the consumption of marijuana on the premises4) require background checks on managers
Measure F has some strong rules and protections regulating medical marijuana dispensaries, but sets no limits on the number of dispensaries allowed to remain open.
Measure E became moot after its supporters agreed to throw their support to Measure D, according to the Times.