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New Burbank City Council and City Hall challenges

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Photo: FLLewis / Media City G - (l-r) Council Member,Jess Talamantes, Vice-Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, Mayor Will Rogers, Council Members, Sharon Springer and Bob Frutos posed for photos city council chambers in Burbank May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G – (l-r) Council Member,Jess Talamantes, Vice-Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, Mayor Will Rogers, Council Members, Sharon Springer and Bob Frutos posed for photos city council chambers in Burbank May 1, 2017

The new Burbank City Council is facing some tough challenges with budget decisions, traffic issues, and development/growth concerns. At the Monday, May 1, reorganization meeting, Councilman, Bob Frutos, and new Council Member, Sharon Springer, were sworn in along with a number of other elected officials before a packed crowd in the city council chambers.

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G -- Burbank city council chambers during the reorganization meeting on May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G — Burbank city council chambers during the reorganization meeting on May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G --Re-elected City Clerk Zizette Mullins, took the oath of office at Burbank at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G –Re-elected City Clerk Zizette Mullins, took the oath of office at Burbank at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis/ Media City G -- City Clerk Zizette Mullins gave the oath of office to newly elected School Board Member Steve Frintner and re-elected School Board Member, Charlene Tabet, at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis/ Media City G — City Clerk Zizette Mullins gave the oath of office to newly elected School Board Member Steve Frintner and re-elected School Board Member, Charlene Tabet, at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G -- (l-r) Re-elected City Treasurer, Debbie Kukta, re-elected Councilman Jess Talamantes, newly elected Council Member Sharon Springer, and re-elected Councilman Bob Frutos sworn in at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis / Media City G — (l-r) Re-elected City Treasurer, Debbie Kukta, re-elected Councilman Jess Talamantes, newly elected Council Member Sharon Springer, and re-elected Councilman Bob Frutos sworn in at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

By far the most anticipated speech of the reorganization meeting was made by outgoing Councilman, Dr. David Gordon.  After 11 years on the council, Gordon was defeated in the general election last month.

Photo: FLLewis/ Media City G -- Outgoing Councilman Dr. David Gordon delivered farewell remarks at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

Photo: FLLewis/ Media City G — Outgoing Councilman Dr. David Gordon delivered farewell remarks at Burbank City Hall May 1, 2017

In his remarks, Gordon reviewed his time on the council, touching on the highs and lows. He mentioned winning a seat on the council in a 2006 special election, then being shut out of the rotation for vice-mayor and mayor by his colleagues for several years. Gordon was finally selected as vice mayor in 2013 and then mayor in 2014. However, Gordon pointed out Council Member, Emily Gabel-Luddy, was the only colleague to not vote for his selection as mayor. Luddy abstained from that vote. Sigh, some wounds don’t heal.

Gordon was gracious to the newest council member. He encouraged Springer to follow his lead by asking “tough questions.” Gordon wrapped up by saying: “I don’t intend to fade away … I shall return.”  Gordon’s supporters and detractors will have time to chew on that. Gordon’s immediate plan is to take a “real vacation.”

Later, Will Rogers accepted the mayor’s gavel from his fellow council members with a unanimous vote. No speech, but he made some pleasant comments and a few jokes. Gabel-Luddy was picked for the vice-mayor position. One can only hope that as mayor, Rogers stays on the high road, showing control and patience, forgoing the opportunity to hit back when others throw tough blows his way. His demeanor will set the tone at city council meetings. Let’s see what happens. The first meeting of the new city council is tonight.

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