After Councilman Zareh Sinanyan was appointed mayor Tuesday night by the City Council, he promised to streamline city spending, bring more businesses to Glendale, speed up the revitalization of downtown and increase government engagement throughout the city.
“We will do everything to ensure that all parts of Glendale, from far north to south, from east to west, from big business to mom-and-pop shops, homeowners, renters, everyone has the ability to be fully engaged in the business of the city,” Sinanyan said.
Sinanyan replaces former Mayor Dave Weaver, who now reverts back to his council position. His nomination by Councilman Frank Quintero received support from all on the dais except for Weaver, who abstained from voting because he believed Sinanyan did not have enough experience, but he didn’t want to stand in the way of the nomination.
Sinanyan, an attorney, was elected to the council last April, despite a swath of controversy connected to racist and sexist YouTube comments — mostly related to Armenia’s geopolitical enemies — he had written. He apologized for the comments, but only after he was elected.
Before the election, Sinanyan said the comments did not reflect his character, but would not admit that he wrote them when the council reviewed whether he should be removed from a city commission as a result of the comments, choosing to not do so in the end.
Council members Najarian and Freidman initiated the review, but on Tuesday both supported his nomination.
“May I wish you good luck. You’ll need it,” Weaver said as he and Sinanyan switched chairs.
Sinanyan said his short time at City Hall, so far, shouldn’t preclude him from holding the top position, adding that on the flip side, he supported restricting time spent in office.
“I’m committed to the idea of term limits,” Sinanyan said during a phone interview Wednesday, noting that he plans to work with his colleagues to get support for his proposal.
In addition to term limits, Sinanyan also laid out other policy positions, including his opposition to increasing taxes and his support of improving street safety as a result of numerous pedestrian, bicyclist and driver accidents, as well as a desire to host council meetings outside city hall and in the community affected by items on the agenda.
If holding council meetings outside City Hall would be cost prohibitive, though, he would no longer espouse the idea.
“The position of mayor is a responsibility that I don’t take on lightly and I will do my upmost to carry out in an honorable and respectful manner,” he said.