Redistricting Woes, Shutting Down Public Comment and Striped Socks

Council President Wesson's redistricting woes continue to nip at his heels Attorney Leo Terrell, who has filed a lawsuit against the city, claiming race unduly influenced the redistricting process, has attempted to convince Attorney General Eric  Holder to investigate possible voting rights violations. Terrell specifically alleges that Councl President Wesson unduly influenced the redistricting process in a way that clearly benefitted "certain politicians" while disenfranchising the public, and that this was based on race. (To see TNN's report on this issue, Councilman Wesson and Redistricting CLICK HERE.)

A secretly taped video at a Los Angeles Baptist Ministers conference is not going to help Wesson's cause. Despite claims he had nothing to do with redistricting, when Councilman Wesson was asked to come and explain his rumored influence on the break up of their district to the conference, he admitted he had a hand in it. “I did the best I could to retain ‘assets’ for all of the districts. One person. Alone. Every member came to me to discuss what they wanted....”

He went on to claim he had secured assurance that three of the districts would have African-American representation for the next 30 years.....hmmm going to be difficult explaining that one to the judge. 

Last June, with little warning and no neighborhood council review, City Hall voted 10-0 to allow Woodland Hills shopping mall giant Westfield to keep up to $59 million of the expected $140 million in tax revenues over 25 years.  Woodland hills residents, claiming the city sorely needed the money, showed up at City Council to weigh in before the vote and urged the council to hold off until it had been reviewed by the affected Neighborhood Councils. Council President Wesson, who likes to waste as little time as possible listening to complaints from residents, gave them a total of 10 minutes to weigh in.

"We are a city that is financially strapped," resident Colleen Marmor said. "And yet it was at the end of the agenda and heard in a bum's rush fashion at the 11th hour."

Woodland Hills resident Siegfried Othmer asked to speak against the Westfield deal for three minutes but was rebuffed by Wesson who told her, “I will give you one minute starting now. Do not debate me. You’re wasting your time.”

Public comment is such a waste of everyone's time. Council President...why not get rid of it altogether?

Councilman Wesson easily won re-election as City Council President with a 13 - 0 vote. Given what happened to Jan Perry and Bernard Parks when they refused to support his first ascension to Council President, one can only imagine the second thoughts any Councilmember thinking of voting against him, might have.  After the unanimous vote  to re-elect him as Council President, he had some joke gifts to hand out to the Councilpeople who had voted for him...socks in bright colors and stripes. Before handing them out, he said,  “I like to do devilish things sometimes because I’m a devil.”  

Curious choice of words.



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Established in August of 2008 by writerartist Dianne V. Lawrence, The Neighborhood News covers the events, people, history, politics and historic architecture of communities throughout the Mid-City and West Adams area in Los Angeles Council District 10.

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