Originally published October 15, 2020 

Kevin de León is now the newest member of the Los Angeles City Council. He was sworn in at 10 a.m. Thursday.

The newest councilmember is filling the seat of embattled Councilman Jose Huizar.

The seat became open during the summer after Huizar was suspended for his alleged role in a bribery scandal, in which he is accused of accepting at least $1.5 million in favors from real estate developers, taking more than $800,000 from a Chinese billionaire who owned a hotel in his district, and using his family members to launder money.

De León challenged Dianne Feinstein for her U.S. Senate seat in 2018. Prior to that, he was a California state senator from 2014 to 2018, representing downtown and east L.A.

In March, he won the primary for the city council seat outright with more than 50% of the vote and then was appointed early.

Shortly after his swearing in to the council today, he spoke with our newsroom about his priorities for District 14, especially when it comes to housing:

“First and foremost, we have to keep our residents who are currently housed, we have to keep them in housing because it’s going to be exponentially much more expensive to re-house folks who are living in their apartments and their homes today.”

He also said he’d like to add more beds for the homeless in his district.

— PABLO CABRERA

This report is reprinted with permission from Southern California Public Radio. © 2020 Southern California Public Radio. All rights reserved.

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