West Hollywood Mayor Lindsey Horvath has announced her candidacy for the L.A. County Board of Supervisors’ Third District seat currently held by Sheila Kuehl. Kuehl is retiring after serving two terms, leaving a vacancy in one of the most powerful local offices in the country.
As the governing body of Los Angeles County, the Board of Supervisors serves as the executive and legislative head of the largest and most complex county government in the U.S. The Board is responsible for a budget of nearly $30 billion, overseeing departments and agencies that meet the needs of 10 million residents.
At present, the Third Supervisorial District covers the Westside, most of the San Fernando Valley, the Conejo Valley and the Santa Monica Mountains all the way to the Ventura County Line. It includes Beverly Hills, as well as Los Angeles, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, Calabasas, Agoura Hills, Malibu, Westlake Village and Hidden Hills. Spanning more than 400 square miles, the district’s population is close to two million. A redistricting project is underway which will utilize census data that will be available later in the year.
Regardless of the exact boundaries the Third District will have, the June 7, 2022 election for the seat promises to be as hard- fought as it is high-profile.
Candidates who have already announced in the race include former Santa Monica Mayor and now State Assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica). Kuehl’s recent endorsement of Horvath provides her with a formidable edge, however.
The 38-year-old Horvath is considered one of the bright lights of the progressive political movement in Southern California. She told the Courier that she was approached about running by community members and groups concerned about the loss of Kuehl’s voice.
“They heard my name rumored and reached out to see if I was interested. I very much believe that when you are called to serve you have a responsibility to step up. I’ve always appreciated the work of the county and what is possible. Now more than ever people are counting on the county to deliver what they need. That’s what I am most looking forward to. I have a record of building a strong and diverse coalition and bringing people together,” said Horvath.
She also has an impressive record of service thus far. From 2009-2011 Horvath held a seat on the West Hollywood City Council, and was reelected to that position in 2015. She is currently President of California Contract Cities, is the former President of Women in Municipal Government for the National League of Cities and is an Executive Committee Member and Legislative and Regulatory Chair for the Clean Power Alliance of Southern California, among other public roles.
Perhaps more importantly, Horvath has carved out a vibrant and effective public presence with the deft use of social media. She communicates directly with constituents, earning strong support as an advocate for the rights of women, the LGBTQ+ community, workers, the environment and economic justice.
The issues in her sights as a potential Supervisor include homelessness, transportation (she’s a strong advocate for the Metro Crenshaw Northern Extension) and equitable COVID recovery.
“I’m already working on these issues for West Hollywood, we have experience getting the job done, and we can expand upon it,” Horvath told the Courier. “The county has so many resources at its disposal and we can do better. As president of California Contract Cities, we’ve been having conversations about public safety, the city’s relationship to the county and what people expect the county to deliver, and it’s given me a lot of insight,” she added.
Kuehl certainly believes Horvath is up to the task.
“I have followed Lindsey’s work and have seen the impacts of her leadership, not only in West Hollywood, but also countywide. Her tenacity and commitment to getting things done for the residents of Los Angeles County show that she is uniquely qualified for the job of Supervisor. From helping unhoused residents get the critical services they so desperately need, to creating a sustainable and just future, to leading her city’s recovery efforts for working families–Lindsey has been a leader who takes action for her constituents. There is no other leader in Los Angeles County like her,” said Kuehl in a statement.
Horvath said she is honored by the endorsement.
“I consider Sheila a friend and a mentor. I want to build upon her great work and legacy. She broke down barriers as the first openly gay legislator in California history. I bring a different perspective as a millennial, as a renter and as someone who is still figuring out how to pay off student loans. I’m ready to get to work for people,” she said.