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High-level Garcetti aide won't challenge Councilman Jose Huizar

March 10, 2014|David Zahniser
  • Ana Guerrero, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti's chief of staff.
Ana Guerrero, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti's chief of staff. (Betsy Annas )

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti's chief of staff ended speculation Monday about her immediate political plans, saying through a spokesman she will not file a challenge to City Councilman Jose Huizar.

Ana Guerrero, who has advised Garcetti since his days as a councilman, had been talked up in City Hall circles as a potential challenger to Huizar even though she and her family live in La Crescenta -- outside city limits.

"Ana will not be a candidate" for Huizar's seat, said Garcetti spokesman Jeff Millman in an email. "She is committed to creating jobs and opportunity across Los Angeles as Mayor Garcetti's chief of staff."

Huizar, whose district stretches from Boyle Heights to Eagle Rock, is seeking his third and final four-year term in the March 2015 election. Millman produced the Guerrero statement a few hours after a judge set a Nov. 10 trial date for a sexual harassment lawsuit against the councilman by onetime Huizar aide Francine Godoy.

Godoy, 34, has accused her former boss of waging a campaign of retaliation after she refused to provide sexual favors. Huizar called those claims false but also indicated that he had an extramarital affair with Godoy.

With Godoy's case still unresolved, Huizar has been fundraising aggressively for his reelection bid. Reports filed in January show he raised nearly $322,000 for the reporting period that ended Dec. 31. In recent months, two others have informed the Ethics Commission they too intend to raise money to run for Huizar's seat: Boyle Heights resident Nadine Diaz and Alex San Martin, a disability rights advocate.

San Martin, who lives downtown, said Huizar showed poor judgment by "fooling around" with an employee.

"Bosses aren’t supposed to do that in any local business -– the library, the grocery store, whatever,” said San Martin, who works as a reservation agent for a tour bus company. “You can’t have that kind of work environment."

Huizar spokesman Rick Coca did not respond to requests for comment on Guerrero and the statement by San Martin.


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