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Monday June 15, 2015

John Heilman Retakes His Seat on the WeHo City Council Tonight

By Staff

John Heilman will be installed as a member of the West Hollywood City Council tonight, resuming a 30-year tenure that was interrupted briefly by his failure to win re-election in the March general election. Heilman took first place in the June 2 special election to fill the Council seat vacated by Jeffrey Prang, winning by a major margin.

John Heilman

Heilman's victory heartened two disparate groups of supporters — local business leaders and real estate developers, who funding an independent campaign committee to support his candidacy, and advocates for affordable rent such as the Coalition for Economic Survival, the group that helped organize the campaign for West Hollywood to become an independent city and preserve rent control more than 30 years ago.

His primary opponents were local historic preservationists, who have been angered by his willingness to demolish the historic Great Hall / Long Hall in Plummer Park to create more open space and by some homeowners who object to more development in West Hollywood. A major opponent has been Councilmember John D'Amico, who won election for the first time in 2011 with a campaign that focused on Heilman as an opponent.

The 30-year tenure of Heilman and the long tenures of some of the other Council members sparked a successful campaign in 2013 to limit future Council members to three terms. Heilman's victory means he fills the remaining two years of Prang's term and is eligible to run for two more four-year terms.

The installation will occur at 6:30 p.m. at the City Council Chambers at 625 N. San Vicente Blvd. south of Santa Monica. Parking in the five story structure behind the chambers is free with a validated ticket.

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