City Council member leaves post to join development firm

Mitchell Englander represented the northwest San Fernando Valley

Oct.October 12, 2018 12:11 PM
City Council member Mitchell Englander and City Hall

Los Angeles City Council member Mitchell Englander is stepping down from his role in politics to join a development firm that is currently working on a $1 billion project at the Belmont Racetrack.

Englander, who represents the northwest San Fernando Valley, will join L.A.-based Oak View Group in January as its new executive vice president of government affairs, the Los Angeles Times reported. He had two years left in his term.

Oak View, led by CEO Tim Leiweke and backed by Irving Azoff’s MSG Entertainment, builds, manages and books entertainment shows for dozens of areas across the country. Part consultancy, part venture capital firm, the company is currently working on a sports and entertainment development at the Belmont Racetrack that includes a new arena for the New York Islanders hockey team.

In Los Angeles, the firm tried securing a contract to manage the Greek Theatre in Griffith Park this year, but the city ultimately chose to go with another firm.

Critics of Englander had been upset with his handling of the troubling Aliso Canyon gas leak, and they said the council member had exhibited a pro-development stance.

““He’s just sided with the money people, big developers, for a long time over the wishes of the people,” Jim Summers, a former president of the Granada Hills South Neighborhood Council, told the Times.

Englander said in a statement that he did not seek the job, but that it was a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Following Felipe Fuentes, Englander is the second council member in the past two years to quit before his term was completed. First elected in 2011, he was reelected in 2015.

On the council, Englander sits on two committees that handle the city’s budget and police and fire departments. [LAT] — Natalie Hoberman

Related Articles

Councilmen Blumenfield and Cedillo with City Hall

City Council’s plan to restrict developer donations faces Council pushback

LA moves to nip illegal pot shops at the power line

Long Beach officials approve plan to renovate historic Breakers hotel

The fall of DTLA’s power broker: Without Jose Huizar, can developers still count on a friendly City Council?

To build or not to build: LA developers pay big bucks to bypass zoning codes

City Council signs off on one-year pilot program for e-scooters

In show of solidarity, LA City Council denounces proposed state housing bill

Experiment could become a model for how LA deals with its homeless problem