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Krekorian, Essel in Dec. 8 runoff election for 2nd District L.A. City Council seat

September 23, 2009 |  7:02 am

The votes are counted in the special election to replace former Los Angeles City Councilwoman Wendy Greuel in the 2nd District and it's official: Assemblyman Paul Krekorian and former Paramount Pictures Corp. executive Christine Essel will be in the Dec. 8 runoff election.

Less than 12% of registered voters turned out for the race in the district, which covers parts of Studio City, Sherman Oaks, Valley Village, Valley Glen, North Hollywood and Sunland-Tujunga.

Essel, who has never run for office, and Krekorian, who served on the Burbank school board before he was elected to the Assembly in 2006, led the other eight candidates in fundraising during the brief contest. The former film executive outspent Krekorian by nearly 2 to 1 after raising $294,000 for her primary round. Both moved into the district in May to run for Greuel's seat, which pays $178,789 annually.

In the final tally, Krekorian led with 34% of the vote to Essel's 28%. Los Angeles school board member Tamar Galatzan, a deputy city attorney, finished third with 13% and Mary Benson, a Sun Valley Area Neighborhood Council member, came in fourth with 8% of the vote. The Los Angeles city clerk has posted the results.

-- Maeve Reston at Los Angeles City Hall