Huizar told the Los Angeles Times that the cash-strapped city will have to borrow money to buy the land and settle filed by the developer against the city. But how will the city pay off that loan? Huizar said the city will seek to be reimbursed by the state but did not provide any details about how much and when that would happen.
Huizar has been solidly on the side of El Sereno residents in this fight. But he has also found himself facing off against one of his influential supporters and campaign fundraisers: Ben Reznik, the attorney and City Hall lobbyist representing the Elephant Hill developer.
Still, despite the issues raised over the Elephant Hill settlement, many residents are just glad that a chunk of one of El Sereno's last undeveloped hillsides will remain open space in the middle of a predominately Latino neighborhood. In a statement issued by the Latino Urban Forum, Elva Yañez (pictured above at the podium), the El Sereno resident who lead the most recent efforts to preserve Elephant Hill, hailed the settlement as a victory for environmental justice:
"After a long and hard fought struggle, the residents of this community have been afforded the environmental protections that are rightfully theirs. We are pleased that this poorly planned project is not moving forward and environmental justice has prevailed.”
City Council votes to pay $9,000,000 for Elephant Hill. Mayor Sam
Density be damned: El Sereno shuts down major development. LA Weekly
City council agrees to buy Elephant Hill. Streetsblog LA
* This post has been updated with hotos of this morning's Elephant Hill press conference by Martha Benedict.