6 Hopefuls File for 3 Seats on City Council

Times Staff Writer

Today is the last day for candidates to file for Glendale's April 2 municipal election, which was recently opened up by Mayor Carroll W. Parcher's decision not to seek reelection to the City Council.

Parcher, a 10-year veteran of the council and former publisher of the News Press, was considered by most political activists in Glendale to be as assured of reelection as any incumbent could be. His retirement means that a newcomer will win at least one of the three council positions in the election.

Incumbents John F. Day and Ginger Bremberg are running for reelection. As of Wednesday, four other candidates had filed for the nonpartisan citywide council elections: Mark A. Doyle, a sociology professor at Glendale Community College; Larry Lousen, a graphic artist; William Mulvihill, a teacher, and Carl W. Raggio, president of the Glendale Unified School District.

School Board Openings

Raggio, well-known through his school board activities, is considered by many in City Hall to be the strongest of the non-incumbents. Raggio's term on the school board is expiring, and his decision to run for the council leaves two incumbents and two challengers running for three seats on that board.

A survey of the potential council candidates--who are not officially on the ballot until the city clerk declares that they have submitted 500 valid petition signatures--shows that proposed zoning changes and the pace of redevelopment promise to be the major issues in the council races.

Glendale has a tradition of low-key and relatively well-tempered politics. It is rare for candidates to directly attack opponents, and that tradition is being followed this year.

No Specified Seats

Candidates do not run for specified seats. The top three vote-getters will take office.

"I'm sure everyone will be saying that they are not running against Ginger Bremberg or Jack Day, that they are running for the empty seat. But, in fact, we all know that we are all running against each other," said Bremberg, who won her first term in 1981 after a defeat in 1979.

Some politicians have expressed surprise that Parcher's retirement did not encourage more candidates to enter the race. Councilman Larry Zarian, whose term runs two more years, said that may indicate general satisfaction with the council. "I hope it is not apathy," he said.

Bremberg, 59, said conservation of hillsides, the need to update zoning so it conforms with the city's general plan and a solution to the problems of traffic and parking would rank among her priorities if she won a second term. A civic activist before her election, she said one of the highlights of the past four years has been the rehabilitation of Verdugo Park.

Seeks Third Term

Day, 64, a retired bank vice president, is seeking his third term. He said he wants to ensure that downtown redevelopment continues. "We've got to continue the momentum," he said.

Doyle, 62, is a newcomer to politics who has been active in the Glendale Community Coordinating Council for Youth and the Greater Glendale Council on Aging. He said his experience in teaching sociology, gerontology and anthropology has given him insights into how important it is for a city to "maintain a feeling of community during times of growth and change." He said he wants to be elected to make sure that the city takes in account "not only the financial effect of any development, but also how it encroaches on people's rights and lives."

Lousen, at 33 the youngest of the candidates, said that the council is too growth-oriented and that he especially wants a limit on apartment construction in the La Crescenta neighborhood. "I don't mind the business center growing, but it bothers me to drive on Foothill Boulevard and see a rush hour," he said.

Wants to Promote Arts

Lousen also was a partner in Tricky Ricks tavern in La Crescenta before it closed last fall because, he said, of a rent hike. As a graphic artist and sign painter, he said, he wants the city to promote the arts more.

According to Raggio, the city is moving too quickly to change its zoning, proposing controversial restrictions on growth in some neighborhoods while encouraging apartment development in others. "It is a chaotic situation," he said.

Raggio, 56, has served on the school board for 12 years. He is the manager of the design engineering services section at Cal Tech's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and is chairman of the Verdugo Private Industry Council, a private agency which works with federal government to develop job-training programs.

Raggio said the city needs to pay more attention to preventing deterioration of south Glendale.

Mulvihill, a high school social studies teacher in the Los Angeles school system, ran unsuccessfully for the Glendale Community College Board in 1981 and 1983.

Asked why he wants to run for council, Mulvihill, 59, said: "Mayor Parcher's stepping down created a good opportunity." He said he did not want to discuss specific issues until certain that he has enough petition signatures to be put on the ballot.

In the school board race, June Sweetnam, 58, is seeking her third term. A volunteer with youth and civic groups, she said her priority in a new term would be to reestablish the sixth class period in seventh and eighth grades. It was eliminated four years ago in junior highs but restored for the ninth grade two years ago. She said she also would stress maintaining good relations with teachers and staff.

The other school board incumbent running is Jane Whitaker, 55, who is completing her first term. She said the school system needs to decide what to do with the vacant Field School property now that a deal to sell it to a developer has collapsed.

Whitaker, who has been active in local and regional PTA groups and is president of the Foothills Youth Services Project, also said she wants to continue curriculum reform and make sure that any money coming to Glendale from the upcoming state lottery is well monitored.

Lawyer Charles Whitesell, 48, has never run for public office before. He said that if elected to the school board he, too, would work for restoration of a sixth period in the junior highs and for better maintenance of school buildings. "We can't defer maintenance any more. There are major things that have to be done now," he said.

Running Second Time

Richard N. Matthews, 46, is running for the school board for the second time. Two years ago, when there were two openings on the board, he finished third in a field of five.

An executive with Carnation Co., Matthews said he would fight drug use in the schools, support the teaching staff and emphasize "the three Rs." Matthews withdrew his two children from the public school system and enrolled them in private schools when the sixth period was cut from junior highs, but said they would return when the period is restored.

Unopposed for reelection, as of Wednesday, were three members of the Glendale Community College Board, all of whom are finishing their first terms: Kenneth Sweetnam (no relation to June Sweetnam), who is a professor emeritus in electrical engineering at California State University, Los Angeles; Ted W. Tiffany, principal of Allan F. Daily High School, and lawyer Phillip C. Kazanjian.

Also unopposed is City Clerk Merle H. Hagemeyer, who was appointed in 1976 and ran unopposed in 1977 and 1981.

City Treasurer Elizabeth Evans, who was appointed in December to serve the remaining four months in the term of Pauline Lockhart, who retired, has filed for reelection. Opposing her is Lynn P. McGinnis, assistant vice president in charge of business development for the Glendale area for Security Pacific National Bank.

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