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By Henrietta J. Burroughs                     Follow East Palo Alto Today on
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Posted on Wednesday, December 7, 2011    
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   Mayor Laura Martinez gets hug from Council member Carlos Romero  Vice Mayor Ruben Abrica shakes hands with Council member Carlos Romero    
                                                            Still frames courtesy of the Media Center
East Palo Alto's new Mayor Laura Martinez gets a hug from former Mayor Carlos Romero at
the end of the East Palo Alto City Council meeting on December 6, 2011. In the second photo,
Romero congratulates the city's new Vice Mayor Ruben Abrica on his new position.


East Palo Alto's Vice Mayor Laura Martinez became the city's new mayor in one of the smoothest election processes the council has had in recent years.

The reorganization of the of the East Palo Alto City Council was the last item on the city council's agenda and it was an item that was, perhaps, one of the easiest on which the council had to decide. Unlike in past years, when the election of the new mayor became a source of contention at the council meeting, this year's council reorganization went without a hitch.

The change in the top two council positions began when Council member Ruben Abrica nominated Martinez to serve as East Palo Alto's new mayor and as the Redevelopment Agency's Vice Chair. Council member Peter Evans, then nominated himself. Council members David Woods, Ruben Abrica, Carlos Romero voted for Martinez, as Martinez, apparently voted for herself. Evans noted that Martinez had the required three votes and did not cast a vote for himself.

The council had one more item on which to decide: the selection of the city's new vice mayor. Romero nominated Council member Abrica. Abrica was selected as the city's vice mayor by a vote of four to one with Evans casting the no vote.

In taking over the reins of the city from Romero who instantly became the former mayor, Martinez said, "I feel like I would not be where I am right now without the support of the residents of the community, the committed residents, the hard working staff, my family and friends, and I look forward to working with all of you and towards an even better East Palo Alto and the progression of our city and I can not be more thrilled than to fill this position. This is an honor and its a true privilege to serve as the Mayor for the City of East Palo Alto."

Vice Mayor Abrica congratulated both the new mayor and the outgoing mayor by saying, "We do try to carry forward the wishes of the community. We do work very hard, all of us on the council, even when we do not agree.... So, I look forward to continuing that tradition in East Palo that we are hard working council members.

With that, the council meeting adjoined and the City Manager, ML Gordon, invited the audience and the council members to enjoy the refreshments which were in the room.

To contact the author of this article, Henrietta J. Burroughs, send an email to epatoday@epatoday.org.



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