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Hernandez Aims to Seek Consensus as Councilman

TIMES STAFF WRITERS

Mike Hernandez reminded voters time and again during his campaign for the Los Angeles City Council’s lst District seat: “I’m from this community. My wife and I have chosen to live here and raise our two children.”

And now that Hernandez has been elected to represent his neighbors and all 1st District residents on the Los Angeles City Council, he intends to seek their feedback.

“My style is going to be one of asking people how to get things done,” Hernandez said. “My style is to find consensus.”

To those who have known Hernandez, the declaration came as no surprise. From his tenure as head of the Highland Park Christmas Parade to his post as treasurer of Gloria Molina’s supervisorial campaign, the Cypress Park bond agent has earned a reputation for community activism and getting things done.

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As a candidate, Hernandez also frequently reminded voters of his close ties to Molina, the 1st District councilwoman who was elected to the county Board of Supervisors in February. But soon after his election, he moved quickly to dismiss any speculation that he will adopt Molina’s combative style on the City Council.

Aided by Molina’s endorsement and fund-raising support, Hernandez finished first in the June primary. He defeated Chinatown lawyer Sharon Mee Yung Lowe in the Aug. 13 runoff, with 64% of the vote to Lowe’s 36%.

The district is one of the city’s poorest, encompassing portions of Northeast Los Angeles and the largely Latino immigrant neighborhoods of Pico-Union, Westlake and Echo Park.

“A lot of the problems we have in this district have to do with having a lot of people on a very small piece of land,” he said. As a solution, he said, he will push for more light manufacturing and low-income housing in the district.

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