Garcetti appoints new 'Back to Basics' deputy to oversee service issues

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti appoints new deputy to oversee city services

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Thursday announced the appointment of a new deputy mayor for city services, naming Board of Public Works Commissioner Barbara Romero to oversee the improvements in government functions at the core of his "Back to Basics" agenda.

Romero will move to her new position on March 23. She replaces Doane Liu, who in January was appointed to a senior position at the Port of Los Angeles.

"I am excited to help advance Mayor Garcetti's vision to ensure city services are delivered effectively, efficiently and where they are needed most," Romero said in a statement.

Romero's hiring was accompanied by another announcement: Heather Repenning, an aide who has worked for Garcetti for 11 years and is now his director of external affairs, will be nominated to fill Romero's seat on the powerful Board of Public Works.

The moves are the latest shuffling in the upper ranks of Garcetti's staffers as the mayor nears this halfway mark of his first term and begins turning toward his reelection campaign. (On Monday, Garcetti quietly launched his 2017 fundraising effort with a new website courting donors.)

Last Friday, a memo was circulated at the mayor's office announcing that Yusef Robb, Garcetti's director of communications and another longtime aide, would be stepping down.

For more news from the mayor's office, follow @petejamison.

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