It’s high noon.
Otherwise known as Election Day in L.A. And just like in the movies, this town ain’t big enough for all the candidates — and the showdown is taking place at the polls across the city.
Most of the attention has been focused on the LaBonge/Box/O’Grady race in Council District 4. While history shows it’s virtually impossible to unseat an incumbent councilmember in Los Angeles, bike advocate Stephen Box has run a very smart race and stands a real chance of pulling off an upset, drawing support from throughout the biking community, as well as significant support from local food truck operators.
But make no mistake. Neither Box, nor anyone else in the CD4 race, is likely to reach the required 50% to avoid a runoff. Right now, my best guess is that we’ll see a runoff between Box and incumbent Tom LaBonge; however, this race looks close enough that any of the three could emerge on top. And any of the three — including the incumbent — could get left off.
So if you live in the district and care who wins — or who loses — get out and vote.
And yes, your vote matters — two years ago David Vahedi won the first round of the CD5 voting by just 60 votes before losing to Paul Koretz by a slim margin in the general election.
And this one could be just a close.
There are also vital elections in council districts 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 and 14. KPCC offers a great overview of each race, as well as candidates for the Board of Education, Board of Trustees and a raft of City Measures including pension reform, library funding and a proposed tax on medical marijuana.
So you don’t have any excuse.
Now get out there and vote for someone who supports your right to ride.
This week marks two important meetings as the BAC Planning Subcommittee meets today at 1:30 pm; the City Council Transportation Committee meets Wednesday at 2 pm to consider the proposed anti-harassment ordinance and Safe Routes to Schools. L.A.’s newly adopted bike plan will be effective the day we convert street parking or travel lanes to protected bike lanes. Matt Ruscigno is looking forward to a RAD Bike Night at the Hammer. The Times asks readers to name the ugliest intersections in L.A. Photos from Saturday’s CicLAvia fundraiser. How to use an eraser on the streets. In a fitting gesture, this weekend’s Tour of Murietta will honor fallen rider Jorge Alvarado.
Not surprisingly, young drivers are more distracted than older ones. If you don’t notice a lot of cyclists on the streets, it’s because we often take the roads less traveled by. One more reason to move to the front of the intersection, as riders stopped in traffic often enjoy two types of second-hand smoke. If anyone is surprised a lawsuit has been filed to force the removal of New York’s Prospect Park West bike lanes, you haven’t been paying attention. Zeke says you can now get a degree in cycling; if real world experience counts, I should have a PhD in bikeology. After a teenage bicyclist is killed, South Carolina cycling advocates question how safe the roads really are.
British officials recommend retaining the Cycle to Work program despite anticipated budget cuts. A cyclist’s helmet cam captures an assault, as a driver jumps out to throttle him. Another driver caught on video threatening a cyclist says he didn’t do it, really. Despite political claims that cyclists pose a danger to pedestrians, stats show just .03% of all London road injuries and 13% of pedestrian injuries are caused by bikes. The definitive refutation of the UK’s long-abandoned road tax. Lots of cyclists supplement with flax, now your next bike could, too. Then again, you could just print it instead. An Aussie man intentionally runs over his lover after seeing him kiss a woman; Cyclelicious looks at the hidden phenomenon of drivers using cars as weapons — which seems to happen on a daily basis, as many cyclists can attest. Naked bike ride season has officially begun.
Finally, after bragging about her new bike, a cyclist learns a lesson in humility courtesy of a low-flying pigeon; no, not that one. And you can vote to honor a hero dog who helped save his master’s life after a bike accident.
Happy Mardi Gras! Laissez le bon temps rouler!