According to preliminary results, mostly reflecting vote-by-mail ballots, both Glendale City Council incumbents and a former candidate held the top spots in the race to fill three open seats on the council Tuesday night.
Incumbent Ara Najarian is in the lead, with 8,305 votes. while fellow incumbent Zareh Sinanyan and challenger Vrej Agajanian are neck-and-neck with 7,892 and 7,885 votes, respectively.
Provisional and late mail-in-ballots must still be counted to reach the final results.
The final outcome may change, especially given the number of candidates — 10. A final tally and canvass of the numbers should be posted on the morning of April 21, according to the city's website.
Najarian spent the night at Phoenicia restaurant surrounded by family and friends.
"I'm encouraged by the early numbers," Najarian said. "I'm hoping we can hang on and win this thing — at least in the top three."
A former Glendale mayor, Najarian would add four years to his decade's worth of time on the City Council. He said he vows to place a temporary moratorium on downtown development and continue his efforts on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board to expand mass transit in the area.
This would be Sinanyan's second term as a City Council member, having also served as mayor for one year. His campaign featured a vision for a local modern transit system and more affordable housing options in planned mixed-use developments in downtown Glendale.
Sinanyan spent the night at a local banquet hall with a couple hundred friends and supporters.
"It's still too close. We'll see what happens," he said.
Agajanian, an engineer known for his political talk show on an Armenian cable station, is a second-time council hopeful. He said he plans to provide more transparency on the council and better support for small businesses.
He was still at his TV studio when the early numbers came in.
"It's not finished until it's finished," Agajanian said. "This is a public victory, and I have to work for and listen to the public. That is what I promised."
Measure L, a proposal that would limit the number of terms for council members to three consecutive terms, or 12 years in office, is leading with 13,671 votes in support and 2,400 vote against it, according to preliminary results.
Najarian is the only candidate who has expressed disapproval of term limits for Glendale City Council seats.
11:05 a.m.: This article has been updated with the most recent polling numbers.