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Candidates Mixer Thursday for Upcoming Venice Neighborhood Council Election

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A candidate recruitment drive will be held Thursday at James Beach restaurant for the upcoming Venice Neighborhood Council election.

The mixer will run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 60 N. Venice Blvd. for all prospective candidates and anyone wishing to learn more about the local advisory councils that were created during the Los Angeles charter reform movement of the late 1990s.

All of the seats on the Venice Neighborhood Council seat are up in the election, including the president and vice-president positions as well as the chair of the influential Land Use and Planning Committee. There will be 21 open seats up for election, including 13 at-large community officers.

The members of the Venice Neighborhood Council will be elected to two-year terms.

The election will be held Sunday, May 18, at Westminster Avenue Elementary School. Candidates must live, work, own property or declare a substantial community interest within Venice boundaries to run.

The filing period started Tuesday and closes April 3.

The Venice Neighborhood Council is one of 95 local advisory councils in the nation’s second-largest city. Venice had the largest voter turn-out in the city for its last election in October 2012 that saw President Linda Lucks and Land Use and Planning Chair Jake Kaufman, both incumbents, get re-elected.

The council recently has dealt with issues ranging from winter storage lockers for the homeless, to approval of a hotel on Abbout Kinney Boulevard, to the zip line attraction at Venice Beach and public safety issues, including the placement of bollards on the boardwalk following last summer’s fatal hit-and-run.

The city’s Department of Neighborhood Empowerment (DONE) and independent election administrator Alicia Smith will oversee the election.

Another candidate recruitment rally will be held Saturday, March 15 at Penmar Park Community Room, 1341 Lake St., from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

A candidates’ forum also will be held May 15 at Westminster Avenue Elementary School with candidates on the ballot invited.

— Venice Dispatch

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