From city hall to state Capitol?

A FLURRY of political signs at the corner of Garden Grove Boulevard and Brookhurst Street in Garden Grove (OCT photo).

Election season is slowly creeping up on us. There’s a statewide primary election coming on June 7 and a bunch of familiar names are showing up in signs on street corners as well as soon to appear on ballots.

In the 26th State Senate District, Huntington Beach City Councilmember Kim Carr (Democrat), is running against Janet Nguyen, a member of the State Assembly (Republican).

In the 70th State Assembly District there’s a big field of five, which includes Kimberly Ho, Westminster City Councilmember (Republican); Diedre Thu-Ha Nguyen, Garden Grove City Councilmember (Democrat); Tri Ta, Mayor of Westminster (Republican).

In the Orange County Supervisor Second District contest, Kim Nguyen, Garden Grove City Councilmember, is one of five candidates for this non-partisan position. Also, Erik Peterson, a member of the Huntington Beach City Council, is running for Fourth District Seat on the State Board of Equalization.

All told, six sitting city councilmembers have tossed their hats into the ring, seeking that next rung on the electoral ladder.

It’s worth pointing out that California now has what might be called a “top two” primary system. The candidates who finish in first and second position in votes in the June primary – regardless of party affiliation – will face off in November.  In some cases that might mean two Democrats or two Republicans duking it out this fall.

Any way things fall out, you can expect the usual blight of garish, simplistic street signs on every corner, and – in your mailbox – a flood of campaign literature declaring The Other Guy to be Satan’s best friend, and Their Candidate to be a combination of Lincoln and St. Francis of Assisi.

As Winston Churchill said, “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”

Good neighbors on Chapman Avenue

Many Garden Grovers are delighted with the new Pavilion Plaza West development on Chapman Avenue west of Brookhurst Street. Anchored by a popular Sprouts Farmers Market grocery store – with more stores and eateries on the way – it’s injected a new surge of economic vitality into the area.

But there’s also an ancillary benefit. The older Pavilion Plaza – anchored by a CVS drug store and a Chuze Fitness gym – had fallen into disrepair and was starting to look like a bit of an eyesore, with tatty parking lots and graffiti’d walls.

That’s starting to change. In response – we hope – to the competition next door, this older center is now sporting clean walls, parking lot resurfacing and restriping. It’s all a promising step toward re-establishing the Chapman/Brookhurst area as the shopping destination it once was.

“Usually Reliable Sources” alternates with Jim Tortolano’s “Retorts” column.

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