Councilwoman Jan Perry, the No. 2-ranking official on the Los Angeles City Council, resigned from her leadership post last week because of what she described as behind-the-scenes maneuvering over redistricting and the council presidency. Perry, who represents downtown and part of South Los Angeles will remain on the City Council.
Perry set forth her views in a letter sent to her colleagues Thursday, November 3 announcing her resignation from the leadership position. She cited particular concern about the process of replacing Council President Eric Garcetti, who plans to resign from his leadership position at the end of the year. Perry also suggested that new boundary lines for the council’s 15 districts are being redrawn in secret, even though a 21-member commission has been charged with doing that job in public.
“In recent months, I have felt that we have drifted away from the kind of openness and frank discussion that has characterized this council,” Perry wrote to her colleagues. “These important issues should be discussed on the public record and reflect the needs and the best interests of our constituents and the best ideas for the future in governance for the city.”
Perry is currently running for mayor in the 2013 election. She was appointed in 2006 to serve as Assistant Council President Pro Tempore and was elected by her colleagues to serve as Council President Pro Tempore in 2009. Perry was the first African American woman to serve in a leadership role in the history of the Los Angeles City Council.
Perry plans to continue to the work that she has started to open new parks, create housing at all income levels, and invest in new job opportunities to support the development of her district and the City of Los Angeles. She also underscored her commitment to good government: “I will continue to fight for openness and for the values in governance that I believe support the best in ideas, the best in leadership in an environment that honors a transparent process for the benefit of all.”