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Two incumbents, nine challengers vie for Glendale council seats

January 25, 2013|By Brittany Levine and Kelly Corrigan, Times Community News

Eleven Glendale City Council candidates are one step closer to getting on the April ballot after they each turned in more than 100 signatures from local residents nominating them to run for three available seats.

The signatures must still be confirmed by the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder, and three other contenders could enter the fray if they take advantage of a five-day extension to turn in signatures because one incumbent, Mayor Frank Quintero, isn’t running.

State regulations allow for the extension if at least one incumbent isn’t running.

The candidates, so far, include incumbents, longtime City Hall critics, former employees, city commissioners and outsiders to Glendale politics.

While council candidates have until Tuesday, the deadline has passed for Glendale Unified school board candidates. Seven are running for three seats on the school board, including incumbents Christine Walters, Joylene Wagner and Greg Krikorian.

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Two former Glendale Unified teachers — Daniel Cabrera and Jennifer Freemon — who campaigned for seats and lost in 2011 have turned in their paperwork to run.

Residents Armina Gharpetian and Ali Sadri are also vying for seats.

Several council candidates said in interviews this week that they plan to run vigorous campaigns to stand out among the large candidate pool, and at least one candidate, Zareh Sinanyan, a Community Development Block Grant commissioner, has already appeared on multiple Armenian television shows.

Councilman Ara Najarian said he plans to pull out all the stops.

“I am going all-out in this campaign like never before,” he said.

Candidate Aram Kazazian, an architect and longtime council critic, said the number of candidates has him feeling pessimistic.

“It’s going to really hurt the new people, and the incumbents will be guaranteed to win,” Kazazian said.

Councilwoman Laura Friedman said with Quintero leaving office, multiple contenders were expected.

“It’s not a surprise by any stretch of the imagination,” she said.

While most of the candidates said they’re running to improve quality of life and safety in the city, other prominent issues include pension reform, overdevelopment and a controversial multimillion-dollar transfer from Glendale Water & Power to the city’s General Fund, which pays for police, parks and other city services.

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