Streetsblog Election Guide

Tomorrow, millions of Angelenos will take to the polls for L.A.’s 2009 Municipal Elections.  Truthfully, the most exciting races are the ones for Comptroller and City Attorney, with the Mayoral and most City Council races all but decided.

However, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be prepared to go to the polls and vote tomorrow.  There has been some good reporting done on this election, especially in the 5th Council District’s election to replace Jack Weiss, and I’ve compiled some of the important links for a quick primer.

For Mayor, the candidates all answered a survery for the Times on the Subway to the Sea, but the candidates all have larger platforms at their personal websites.  Incumbent Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa brags that he helped pass Measure R and banned road construction during rush hour, but I’ll give a Streetsfilm t-shirt to the first person that can find the word "bicycle" anywhere on his campaign website.

After Villaraigosa, the candidates all may have better platforms, but they also have much smaller campaign war chests.  Walter Moore seems to be the alternative to Villaraigosa as far as running a viable campaign and he has an interesting transportation platform that seeks to replicate the old "red car" transit system with a series of Bus Rapid Transit lines. Craig X. Rubin has also has a multi-modal plan to reduce automobile congestion that does promote bikes, but doesn’t have the same detail as Moore.

A lot of the other candidates don’t really talk transportation at all on their sites.  I have trouble finding any information about David "Zuma Dogg" Saltsburg concerning his transportation policy at his official website…and the same is true for Carlos Alvarez.  David Hernandez writes on Mayor Sam about his plans for the city and doesn’t mention transit or transportation.

If I’m missing anything on some of these candidates’ websites, please let me know.  There’s a lot of information on each candidate out there, but if they don’t put transportation front and center it’s not easy to find links to their views.

For a series of links for the 5th District, read on after the jump.

Oddly, the Times did a more in-depth series of questions on development and transportation for the City Council candidates looking to replace Jack Weiss than they did for Mayor.  The Times asked them about both the Expo Line and development in more general terms.

On Expo, each of the candidates repeats some version of the arguments that break out everytime Phase II of the Expo Line is discussed.  If you have strong feelings on Expo, or it’s alignment you should definately read what each candidate has to say.

The blog "BikingInLA" did it’s own candidate forum, asking the 5th District Candidates to write whatever they wanted to about bicycling.  Four of the candidates, Aadeena Bleich, Robert Schwartz, Robin Ritter-Simon and David Vahedi all responded with what are pretty well thought-out responses that all show a good understanding of cyclists’ issues.

While we may not have a lot of transportation information now, Streetsblog will do candidate surveys for any election that ends up with a runoff.

  • Election Items Presented by
    (more available next election):


    Mayor, City of Los Angeles

    David “Zuma Dogg” Saltsburg
    Community Advocate/Economist

    Los Angeles Community College District
    Member of the Board of Trustees

    Lady Cage-Barile Seat #2
    Roy Burns Seat #4
    Jozef Thomas Essavi Seat #6
    Kurt S. Lowry Seat #7


    Measure B – Solar Energy and Job Creations Program
    Charter Amendment and Ordinance Proposition B

    Statement: Against – Vote NO on Measure B

    ————————————————————————— – Informing the Voters of Los Angeles County

  • I’m voting for Tony V and yes on measure B. Otherwise I haven’t thought much about the election.

    Tony V is still motivated (mainly by ambition, I expect) to get some federal funding to quicken the pace of the purple line extension. That way he can have a true win in the form of a campaign promise on which he delivered, which I expect he’ll use in his campaign for Governor, whether it’s this coming gubernatorial election or the next one.

    Thus, his interests are pretty much alligned with mine for now, so I want to give him a chance to finish what he started.

    Measure B is the putting-solar-panels-on-lotsa-buildings measure.

  • Brittancus

    Edited because it wasn’t even close to about transportation or Livable Streets – D

  • The breathtaking naked racism in Brittancus post is well, breathtaking. Yes, thousands (thousands!) of innocent people have been massacred by brown people… we got it. What you don’t understand is that your crazy post only serves to undermine Walter Moore not help him.

  • ” I have trouble finding any information about David “Zuma Dogg” Saltsburg at his official website…”

    You are having trouble finding any information on me at the website with all those links and info including phone and email?

    Take off your Stevie Wonder glasses and look at the screen.

  • Bzcat – you’re right. His post is gone. I would have deleted it outright but didn’t want anyone to think you were going crazy, commenting on a post that wasn’t there.

    Zuma Dogg – My apologies for the typo. I meant to say that there wasn’t anything about transportation, something that I still don’t see. I fixed the sentence and invite you to either email me or post your ideas on transportation and we’ll post it for everyone to see.

  • To counter David Galvan:

    Measure B is a load of hooey. No on that B! We have the laws and authority to put solar panels on roofs already – we don’t need vendor and labor lock-ins to protect the DWP and a few unions.

    No on B!

    And for mayor – out of spite – I’m voting for Zuma Dogg.

  • Describing Moore’s transportation platform as “interesting” is generous.

    Moore’s opposition to the extension of the Purple Line should disqualify him from consideration by most transit advocates.

  • Wad

    Dan, to add to that, if you were to acknowledge that 700-series Rapids are considered BRT, and 300-series limiteds are not much different than Rapids speedwise, Metro already has replaced the Red Car grid with BRT!


Today’s the Day: Rock the Vote

Election Day is finally here, and half of Los Angeles’ City Council is up for re-election.  Streetsblog has covered each of the seven City Council elections and Ballot Initiative O. Proposition O is an oil extraction tax of $1.44 per barrel.  Opponents of the tax claim it will raise gas prices at a time when […]

Antonio Villaraigosa, The Transportation Mayor

Five years ago, I was sitting at my desk in New York City reading about Los Angeles and wondering how I was going to adapt.  Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa seemed obsessed with speeding up car traffic to the detriment of neighborhoods.  It’s hard to remember the Mayor’s talk of Tiger Teams, specialized LAPD units designed to […]

If you don’t vote, you’re the problem

I’m going to keep this short and sweet. Last March, only 377,881 people bothered to cast a ballot in the Los Angeles primary election. That’s less than the 400,000 people LADOT estimated in the new bike plan rides a bike every month. Think about that. Only 21% of eligible voters actually voted last time around. […]