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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Wu, Menchaca, Chan elected to San Gabriel City Council

By Kaylee Chan | Editor in Chief

   On Nov. 8, City Council elections were held in San Gabriel for three out of five city council positions, as well as city clerk and city treasurer. Incumbents John Wu and Denise Menchaca won reelection, while San Gabriel County Water Board (SGCWD) member Eric Chan was elected for his first term.

   In the city clerk race between Mary Acuna Garcia and incumbent Thu Nguyen, Nguyen won with 64 percent of the vote as of Nov. 13.

   Attorney Kevin Sawkins, incumbent, beat out business developer David Localio in the race for city treasurer with 72 percent of the vote.

   Voting ended after 8 p.m. and ballots are continuing to be counted, due to a surge in last-minute mail-in ballots, according to The election results will be updated on Nov. 29 and again on Dec. 2, but the 466 vote gap between Chan and runner-up Jorge Herrera Avila in the city council race is a decisive margin.

   There were seven candidates for city council total, including customer service supervisor Avila, current city council member Carina Rivera, business owner Reyna Isela Lopez Bowles, and insurance broker Jeanne E. Raya.

   Council members are elected to four year terms and meet the first and third Tuesday of every month at 6:30 p.m. in the City Hall. They establish policies that affect San Gabriel, determine the city budget, and carry out laws handed down to them on the county, state, and federal levels.

   The San Gabriel City Council has no term limits and the mayor, who is elected from within the council, rotates every term.

   Wu was elected with the highest margin of votes at 21.59 percent as of Nov. 13. He has served on the city council since February.

   According to the City of San Gabriel website, Wu is “committed to improving the City’s infrastructure, resident safety, and engagement with the business community.”

   Menchaca, who was elected at 16.99 percent, was the candidate with the most experience on the council, as she first joined in 2017.

    Menchaca said she values improving San Gabriel’s infrastructure, especially the quality of its roads. She also values promoting local businesses.

   “Mission Super Hardware has been in business for 75 years and some people still don’t know it’s here,” Menchaca said.

   Leading up to the election, Menchaca did door-to-door campaigning and met with local businesses, an experience she described as “grueling”.

   Eric Chan, who has served on the SGCWD Board of Directors since 2013, won 16.32 percent of the vote.

   Chan prioritizes public safety, fiscal responsibility, and responsible development, according to a post on his Facebook page. He is active on Facebook, where his charged political posts have incited controversy in the past.

   On Oct. 19, a candidate forum took place in Grapevine Arbor, in which candidates answered questions submitted by the public, the first of its kind since 2018.

   The forum was sponsored by and moderated by League of Women Voters – Pasadena Area. Candidates Menchaca and Rivera did not attend.

   Topics discussed included housing for low-income residents, water restrictions, and the need for diverse representation in government.

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Wu, Menchaca, Chan elected to San Gabriel City Council