Nury Martinez's Former LA Council Seat Up for Grabs in Special Election

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LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Voting centers will open at 7 a.m. Tuesday at locations around City Council District 6 for the special election to fill the council seat that became vacant with the resignation of disgraced former Council President Nury Martinez.

Seven candidates are on the ballot to fill out the term, which ends in December 2024. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote, there will be a runoff between the top two vote-getters, with the deadline to cast ballots June 27.

Polls close at 8 p.m.

The seven candidates appearing on the ballot are Marisa Alcaraz, Rose Grigoryan, Issac Kim, Imelda Padilla, Marco Santana, Antoinette Scully and Douglas Sierra.

Whoever is elected will represent a large portion of the San Fernando Valley, including Arleta, Lake Balboa, North Hills, North Hollywood, Panorama City, Sun Valley and Van Nuys.

Martinez represented the district until October, when she resigned first her council presidency and then, two days later, her seat altogether. Her resignations came in the wake of Martinez being caught making racist comments in a meeting that was secretly taped and leaked to the media.

Former Councilman Gil Cedillo was also in that meeting, along with Councilman Kevin de León and Ron Herrera, president of the L.A. County Federation of Labor. Herrera also resigned his post, while Cedillo ultimately left the council at the end of his term after losing his bid for re-election in June.

De León has defied continued calls for his resignation but has been stripped by the council of major committee assignments and largely shunned by council colleagues.

Early voting for the special election began March 25, with registered voters receiving vote-by-mail ballots and in-person voting made available as well. Voters can cast their ballots in several ways, including at vote centers, at drop-off boxes, and by mail if postmarked by Tuesday and received within seven days.

Voters can find a voting center or a drop-box location at

Eligible District 6 residents who missed the registration deadline can still vote at any vote center, per California's election law. Conditional voter registration allows a prospective voter to register and cast a ballot.

Alcaraz, deputy chief of staff and environmental policy director to 9th District Councilman Curren Price, touts several accomplishments, such as crafting L.A.'s "Hero Pay" law to protect and honor frontline workers during the height of the coronavirus pandemic. She is 38.

Grigoryan, a social activist and journalist who immigrated from Armenia a decade ago, promises to advocate for permanent supportive housing for the unhoused, more affordable housing units and working to eliminate food insecurity. She is 37.

Kim, a small-business owner, says he's running on a platform based on three ideas -- redefine, regain and restore. He says he wants to get the small things done right, starting with faster, more responsive city services. He is 34.

Padilla, a community relations manager, says she is a lifelong resident of the San Fernando Valley, understands the community's potential and is ready to partner with the community to make progress. She is 35.

Santana, a housing nonprofit director who has worked for former state Sen. Bob Hertzberg and Rep. Tony Cardenas, says his focus would be addressing homelessness, public safety and environmental justice. He is 32.

Scully, a community organizer, says she has experience in education, specializing in racial justice consulting and advocacy work in environmental and justice for the disabled. She also wants to expand public transit. She is 38.

Sierra, a business consultant, says he's running because the community is "ripe" for change. He says the city needs to build more affordable housing, streamline the permit process and invest in infrastructure and transportation. He is 37.

The district is being overseen by a non-voting caretaker, the city's chief legislative analyst, Sharon Tso. A non-voting caretaker does not hold a seat on the council, but oversees the council office to make sure the district provides constituent services and other basic functions.

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