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A look ahead at 2013 for Burbank

December 31, 2012

The year 2013 is already shaping up to be a busy year, with several issues rooted in the past expected to come to fruition. While the year ahead will no doubt unleash its own bounty of surprises, here are some issues we can all count on happening in 2013.

Citywide elections

Six candidates will be vying for three seats on the Burbank City Council in the February primary.

Incumbents Jess Talamantes, David Gordon and Dave Golonski will face three challengers — Juan Guillen, David Nos and Robert Frutos.

While the incumbents have touted their municipal experience, the three other hopefuls said they would take on city issues with fresh eyes and ears.

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At the top of the candidates’ platforms are quality of life issues, including improving infrastructure, controlling traffic and development and maintaining the city’s programs and services.

Three candidates are vying for city clerk, including incumbent Zizette Mullins — who was appointed to the position by the City Council in June — Nonna von Sonn and Gloria Salas.

For city treasurer, incumbent appointment Debbie Kukta is the sole candidate.

With two seats up for grabs on the Burbank Unified School Board, voters will have to choose between five residents — first in a primary in February, and then in the general election in April.

Incumbent Larry Applebaum, currently serving as school board president, hopes to win a seat along with candidates David Dobson, Steve Ferguson, Charlene Tabet and Armond Aghakhanian.

Each candidate has their own reason for running, but one major theme in their campaign so far is adding more technology to classrooms during a time of unprecedented budget cuts that has seen the district lose more than $17.3 million per year for the last five years.

No matter which two candidates take the helm on the school board this April, one likely discussion could entail where further cuts will come from when the district begins to tackle its predicted $6.9 million structural deficit by the end of 2013-14.

Walmart legal issues

The fate of a Walmart in Burbank hangs in limbo as a new judge is sought for a lawsuit that was filed by three residents last year in an effort to stop the company from opening a store in the former Great Indoors adjacent to the Empire Center.

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