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VALLEY ROUNDUP | Northeast Valley

Sanchez Continues Verbal Assault Against Padilla

May 21, 1999|PATRICK McGREEVY

Los Angeles City Council candidate Corinne Sanchez continued to attack 7th District rival Alex Padilla on Thursday for his actions as a building commissioner, saying he voted to grant extensions to nuisance properties in the district 90% of the time.

Sanchez and Padilla are locked in an increasingly bitter contest to represent the northeast San Fernando Valley district on the Los Angeles City Council. The election is June 8.

In her latest attack, Sanchez said Padilla, as a member of the city Building and Safety Commission, voted 31 times on requests by 7th District property owners seeking delays in complying with nuisance abatement orders, and that 28 of those times he granted the owners' requests.

"Alex Padilla could have used his job as a commissioner to help clean up blighted properties in our neighborhoods," Sanchez said. "Instead, Padilla consistently voted to allow unsafe conditions to continue in our neighborhoods."

Padilla and current members of the Building and Safety Commission said the agency tries to persuade owners to eliminate substandard conditions.

"The goal of our commission is to preserve housing, not tear it down," said Lee Alpert, a lawyer and commission member. "Demolition is a last resort. It is ludicrous for anyone to be criticizing anyone for preserving buildings."

Rick Taylor, a spokesman for Padilla, said all of the votes were routine continuances to allow property owners to fix up their buildings.

"They were all unanimous votes," he said. "You try to help people out. You don't try to hurt them."

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