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Incumbents Have Backing of Remaining South Gate Council

Candidate Ricardo Reyes told Patch that he is not surprised.

South Gate Mayor Bill De Witt and Vice-Mayor Gil Hurtado are running on a slate in the up and coming March 5th council elections. The incumbents are hoping to keep both of their seats from the other candidate in the race.

“If you like the way the city is going and its direction I solicit your vote, and for Vice-Mayor Gil Hurtado,” said De Witt during an interview with Patch at the Pancake Corner in South Gate. “I think we have done a good job.”

Hurtado concurred with De Witt’s statement.  

“We have come a long way, but the job is not done,” said Hurtado in a telephone interview. “The honesty [De Witt] bring to this council is irreplaceable.”

The remainder of the South Gate City Council, whose seats are not up for re-election, also told Patch about their support for the incumbents in this race.

The councilmembers pointed to the importance of having colleagues that are familiar with the current economic situation. Projects such as the azalea retail center were listed among the reasons why the incumbents should serve again, according to the councilmembers.

“This is no time for on the job training,” warned councilmember of Henry Gonzalez in a recent interview with Patch. “We have big projects going on.”

Councilmember Maria Davila also stressed the importance of continuity.

“I think it’s important to have continuity at this point in time,” said Davila. “We need to make sure that projects get done.”

Councilmember Jorge Morales told Patch that he was also supporting the incumbents. This is despite the fact that they did not back him when elected in 2011.

“They didn’t support me when I first ran, but in the last two years we have been working closely,” said Morales. “They have proven to me that they have a hard work ethic, and that their integrity is second to none.”

Ricardo Reyes told Patch that he was not surprised about these recent endorsements.

“Incumbents always support each other,” said Reyes. “Come next election, they are hoping that the favor is then returned.”

When Patch asked Reyes as to how these endorsements impacted his chances for success, the non-incumbent could not say, but added that his campaign is more focused on its message.

”It’s hard to say how that will affect the race” said Reyes. “I am running on my vision and the kind leadership I can bring.” 

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Elizabeth February 12, 2013 at 04:16 PM
I really hope this doesn't affect the election. Voters need to see that the council is only backing each other for their own gain, not the city's. Rick Reyes can count on my vote and I hope voters see through this and will vote for him as well.
Cynthia February 12, 2013 at 05:41 PM
I was just looking at the flyer for Rick Reyes,I hope the readers of the patch can see through all the promises of bringing in jobs hiring more police. Hire more police with what money? More jobs? He can do what the County of LA and the state of California can't do! I've been involved as a volunteer in the City for over 27 years, I have never seen Mr Reyes. How has he been involved? What has he done for the City? I think the best choice for South Gate are the two men who have proven themselves over the years, with the count less hours they have given to the community, even before they were on the Council. That's why I'll be voting for Gil Hurtado and Bill De Witt and I hope all the voters do see through all campaign promises and go for proven leadership and vote for Gil and Bill.
Virginia Johnson February 12, 2013 at 06:20 PM
I wholeheartedly agree with Cynthia. I have never seen Rick Reyes either, but I'm sure we will see him and his entourage more frequently one month before the election now that he has pulled papers to run against good people. Rick "says" he has lived in our City for 13 years. He wasn't in the service that long to AVOID going to even one Council meeting to find out what a great group of Council Members we already have and to learn about Municipal affairs. Bill and Gil came in 13 years ago and gave up their family lives to help their Community to put Albert Robles in jail and clean up our City, which they did and are continuing to do. I am certainly voting for the people who care about my City and that is GIL and BILL. Elizabeth would do well to also visit Council for a year or two to find out what great Public Representatives we have. All 5 of them.
J. Munoz February 13, 2013 at 02:31 AM
Hi Virginia, You are totally right with what you have stated. I can also Speak for these 2 fine men. They are always at public functions, they never turn their backs on you, and they are an asset to the City. they are both very hard working, including the other members of City Council. But please don't let anyone come at the voters of South Gate, with False promises of jobs, and more police, where will the money come from to pay more officers? NO ONE CAN GUARANTY high paying jobs. What this City Council has been able to do with the Azalea project is going to attract more companies to come and look at South Gate first. that's a first start that has already been set in motion from the current City Council.
J. Munoz February 13, 2013 at 02:44 AM
Elizabeth, have you ever been to a city council meeting? have you ever personally met any members of city council? I would like to know where you have received your info in any personal gain the current members could receive? Bill Dewitt, is practically a millionaire. Henry Gonzalez, is a retired Union rep. WHO DONATES HIS COUNCIL PAY to the high schools (2 yrs ago he gave South East High school football team championship rings) sports programs I can personally attest to that, and don't make me go on... This Council has always done right to the Citizens of South Gate, so please go to at least 1, just 1 city Council meeting, and get involved, Ricardo Reyes, Money donations is coming from the Politicos of the County of Los Angeles... Also who did you vote for in the last Municipal Elections?!?!? or you didn't VOTE????
J. Munoz February 13, 2013 at 02:45 AM
Cynthia, I would love to get a copy of the flyer...
Tom February 13, 2013 at 11:45 AM
I'm voting for Rick Reyes. I dislike they way the city Commissioner Virginia Johnson and others try to discredit Rick Reyes. Truth is, Bill De Witt has not proven to me that he has the moral fiber or will to stand up to other South Gate city council members and the SGPD POA. Elizabeth, I hope you and other residents will make a choice for change on March 5th. You stay strong girl!
Cynthia February 13, 2013 at 04:49 PM
Tom, How is asking questions discrediting? Elizabeth wrote about his record, I asked what record? What has he done for the City what has he been involved in?
Virginia Johnson February 13, 2013 at 07:04 PM
It seems that people have no idea who they are voting against. Bill De Witt has proven for many years he has the Moral fiber to help our City, with legislating wisely for our City's progress, advocating for South Gate Businesses, by Volunteering his and his family's time, Hiring S.G. Community members, helping our Community Organizations by being a part of and using money out of his own pocket, The list is endless how much he cares for his City and as to my 4 times a year for an hour on a City Commission this does not negate my vote. Of course I endorse Bill and Gil and get upset with someone who has no clue as to who or what Bill and Gil are all about and use our South East Cities for their own stepping stone. Many of us have actually seen Bill De Witt and Gil Hurtado helping our neighborhoods numerous times, before AND after they were elected.
Cynthia February 13, 2013 at 10:18 PM
J.Munoz, the flyer is the one I got in the mail, from Mr. Reyes. The one with the security guards on it.

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