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Councilman Balkman Selected for Mayor

April 29, 1993

CULVER CITY — City Councilman Mike Balkman was picked by his colleagues this week to serve as the city's mayor next year.

"I'm looking forward to an exciting year, one where we all work well together and do what's best for the city," Balkman said after the unanimous vote at a council meeting Monday.

Councilman Albert Vera was named vice mayor, putting him in line to become mayor next year.

The selection of Balkman to the mostly honorary post renews the practice of rotating the mayoralty. Two years ago, an informal order was disrupted when council members chose Paul Jacobs over James Boulgarides, despite the fact that Boulgarides was in line for the job.

Boulgarides was finally given the post last year.

"I'm glad we are returning to the rotating system," Boulgarides said Monday, as he stepped down. "It is a very healthy system for the City Council."

Departing from the rotation system causes political upheaval, he said, making reference to a recent dispute over the mayor's post in Santa Monica between council members Judy Abdo and Ken Genser.

Balkman, 39, is an electrical contractor who was elected to the City Council in April, 1990. Although he is regarded as more pro-business than Boulgarides, council-watchers said they expect little change in the way the group does business, except that perhaps the meetings will be shorter.

Boulgarides is known for listening carefully to speakers and thinking out loud, sometimes at length, before voting.

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