Hermosa Beach Council seat to be filled by mail-in ballot

The Hermosa Beach City Council voted unanimously Tuesday evening to call for a special, mail-in election on May 11 to replace Councilman Hany Fangary, who resigned this month.

Fangary, who served seven years on the council is moving to Manhattan Beach.

Mayor Justin Massey said he wanted to appoint a new replacement member to serve out the remainder of Fangary’s term. He did not mention any name, but said he “wanted to appoint because it would be the cheapest way to do it.” He quickly agreed, however, to vote along with fellow council members, saying “I hear” their sentiment.

Cost of the mail-in election will be $30,000 to $50,000, officials said. By contrast, an in-person vote would cost about $100,000.

The election notion was endorsed by a parade of residents.

John David told the council, “I trust all you council members, and I think an election is very appropriate now. We need members with diverse natures.”

Trent Larson suggested he be appointed to fill the vacancy.

“No one will fault you if you have an election, but if you are going to appoint anyone, you should appoint me. I’ve run for council before, and you don’t have anyone with the same conservative values as I have.”

Dean Francois also pitched himself as an appointment candidate.

“This could be done quickly,” he said. I think I’m the one. The choice is up to you.”

Prior to the council vote, member Stacey Armato said, “The vast majority of our residents seem to be in favor of an election.”

In other action, the council:

— Responding to questions about the possibility of insurrection centering around Inauguration Day, Lowenthal said “We are coordinating with other law enforcement agencies and we are as prepared as we can be.”

Police Chief Paul LeBaron added, “We are definitely paying attention to what is going on nationally, and we will be informed about any potential threat to Hermosa Beach. The FBI has raised the potential of a repeat (of last week’s Capitol riot) and we are increasing staffing on specific days. We will let the public know how we will be dealing with these issues.”

As part of his comments, LeBaron said that “warnings and citations” to dog-owning residents walking unleashed animals are increasing because “more people are going” to the beach and to local parks with their pets. — Awarded two contracts for $500,000 each for “on-call assessment engineering services” to commence action on undergrounding utility districts in certain parts of the city.

The consultants’ services are paid for by residential property assessments. The contracts, to DTA and NV5, are for three years. ER


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