Well, Flying Pigeon LA’s own Josef Bray-Ali has been modest about it, but the happy fact is that he’s thrown his hat in the ring: he is an official candidate running to replace Gil Cedillo as Council District 1 representative. (And he’s not the only one; Cedillo’s autocratic misrepresentation of his electorate has drawn a number of other candidates to the race, which you can read about in this LA Times article, which also details upcoming races in CD5 and CD7).
Apparently, years of empty promises, blatant lies, and hasty excuses every time blood flows in the gutters yet again have worn out Roadkill Gil’s welcome, which he never really had anyway.
Bray-Ali is an ideal candidate for this district: no carpetbagger he, he lives in NELA because he loves it, and has lived there for ten years without previous thought of running for office. He’s a regular visitor to the downtown portions of CD1 as well, has worked in NELA as a developer—a white-hat developer, not the ones who’ll sow the district with bloated monstrosities that clog the streets around them with more traffic than a thousand road diets could ever manage—and he has operated a small neighborhood business on Figueroa for years. He’s also been a tireless advocate for safe streets, cohesive neighborhoods, and his fellow small business owners.
Most of you reading this will think o fBray-ali as an advocate for bicycling, and that he is; and it is likely that Cedillo will try to paint him as a single-issue candidate. But Josef is far more than a “bike guy,” and the changes he advocates would make the streets safer and more effective for all users, including walkers and drivers: although the four recent deaths on Fig were all on foot or on a bike, the street sees a disproportionate rate of car-on-car violence as well, inflicting injuries and heavy costs on car users.
Here’s an article that shows a broader view of Josef’s interests and experience: Putting Parking in Its Place, by Josef for the Los Angeles Business Journal (subscribers only, I am sorry to say).
And of course, there’s a Twitter feed with links and pix aplenty: https://twitter.com/joe4cd1, or @joe4cd1.
Support has been building, albeit discreetly, given Cedillo’s vengeful nature, among neighborhood groups in Silver Lake, Highland Park, and elsewhere, and this will not be a symbolic campaign. Josef aims to win…and if he wins, we all win. Even Cedillo’s supporters will be better off with Bray-Ali in the Council.
Well, maybe not all those outside interests who bankrolled his last campaign&helip;.