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Yaroslavsky allies turn out to oppose altering his district

Supervisor 3rd District Zev Yaroslavsky listens to the speakers at the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors meeting held to consider of various supervisorial redistricting proposals. (Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

L.A. County supervisors brought out their closest allies Tuesday during a tense debate on whether to draw a second Latino-majority district on the five-member board.

Supporters of 3rd District Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, a white Democrat from the Westside, argued that they have flourished under his leadership and have no desire for change, as proposed in redistricting plans backed by Supervisor Gloria Molina, who is Latina, and Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who is black.

"Simply put, the people of the 3rd District have worked very well for a very long time to further our many common goals. We strongly believe we should not be divided," said Stephen Resnick, president of the Westwood Neighborhood Council.

Ian Hunter, president of the San Fernando Valley Community Mental Health Center, voiced alarm at how the Latino plans would divide the Valley into areas represented by three supervisors instead of two. "There would be the potential for serious disruption in the Valley-wide mental health system of care,” he said.

Frank Martinez, a  county employee, expressed support for Yaroslavsky and the district's current boundaries.

"Over the years, District Three has flourished and blossomed under Supervisor Yaroslavsky," Martinez said, adding that the supervisor has coordinated with Latino elected officials in the Legislature and City Council. "So to say that we need to change our district because we don’t have proper representation, in my opinion, as a Latino is unnecessary."

Nancy Freedman, chair of the Brentwood Community Council, said she firmly believed that the county can meet the obligations of the Voting Rights Act, a federal law that protects minority voting rights, by making adjustments in moderation.

Sylmar resident Alina Mendizabal, opposing what she said would be a political gerrymander, waved a sign saying “No Way Molina Go Away.”

RELATED:

Supervisors weigh new Latino-majority district

Coalition backs Knabe in face of redistricting plan

Three supervisors criticized over redistricting plan

-- Rong-Gong Lin II at the Los Angeles County Hall of Administration

Photo: Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky listens to speakers at Tuesday's Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors meeting held to consider of redistricting proposals. Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times

 
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