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Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez announces bid for state controller

SACRAMENTO -- Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) announced Wednesday that he will run for the office of state controller next year.

“California has made great strides in its path to recovery, but our work is far from complete,” Pérez said in a statement. “I’m running for controller to ensure our government reflects the values of the people of California and increases prosperity, by managing our finances smartly, efficienty and effectively.”

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Pérez revealed his bid for to be the state’s chief fiscal officer Wednesday afternoon during a Q & A session at Town Hall Los Angeles, a public discussion forum.

There’s no indication Pérez plans to step aside from the speaker’s post as he runs for office next year. But the announcement could accelerate behind-the-scenes jockeying among Democrats seeking the top Assembly leadership job.

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The current state controller, John Chiang, will reach his term limit in 2014. Pérez starts his campaign with $1.5 million in the bank, said his political advisor, Douglas Herman, after transferring funds deposited in other campaign committees.

Betty Yee, a member of the state Board of Equalization, is also seeking the controller job and has been raising money for the race since early 2011. Yee had $470,000 cash on hand as of June 30.

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Politics is part of John Pérez’s DNA

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Pérez increases state arts funding by $2 million

melanie.mason@latimes.com

@melmason


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