Meet L.A. on the Record, your weekly guide to a crowded local election season

Los Angeles City Hall
(Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times)

The future of Los Angeles is on the ballot.

Our first open mayoral primary in nearly a decade takes place in June, along with numerous other competitive races across the city and county. Dozens of candidates are out knocking on doors, cutting ads and trying to get your attention as we speak.

Local engagement in politics has long been lackluster. When Mayor Eric Garcetti was elected in 2013, less than a quarter of eligible voters bothered to weigh in. Turnout was even lower when he was reelected four years later.

But something different is afoot.

For many Angelenos, the upheaval of the last two years provided a crash course in the ways local government intersects with everyday life. Tens of thousands of people marched in the streets demanding police reform, and countless more watched as the pandemic laid bare the inequities already present in our communities.


As the city confronts a homelessness crisis and fundamental questions around public safety, the people of Los Angeles are paying attention. But the machinery around City Hall often feels opaque, and bureaucratic intricacies abound.

That is why we’ll be here to help readers make sense of the long and crowded election season ahead.

We’ll act as a guide through the too-often-unexplained underworld of L.A. politics. Beginning Feb. 19, our new Saturday morning dispatch will offer a detailed look at each week’s developments, along with broader context and insight. We’ll help you track what’s happening, and what it actually means.

The newsletter will be helmed by a rotating cast of reporters steeped in City Hall and local elections.

Our plan is to make The Times’ L.A. on the Record newsletter an indispensable window into what makes Los Angeles tick. We hope you’ll join us for the conversation. Sign up below or on our newsletters page.