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3 Alhambra City Council members sworn in for third terms

Supporters and officials from neighboring cities filled Alhambra City Council chambers Monday as three incumbent council members were sworn in for new terms.

Council Members Luis Ayala, Barbara Messina, and Stephen Sham took oaths of office for their third terms on City Council. Ayala and Messina were automatically re-elected in August due to a lack of challengers. Sham faced off against challenger Eric Sunada in the November midterm election, defeating Sunada by 369 votes.

This will be Messina's last term on City Council, the council woman said. Messina was elected in 1986 and then again in 2006 and 2010. “This will be my last election, it has been a long run for me. Nineteen years on the City Council, eight years on the School Board," Messina said. "So I have had a long run in this community and it has been a fantastic time.”

Ayala also addressed the audience, thanking his supporters. “It really is a position of privilege to be up here and to serve a constituency," said Ayala, who was elected to City Council in 2006 and re-appointed in 2010.

Sham thanked supporters for their votes in the November election and promised to represent those who did not vote for him as well. “To everyone who voted or supported me in any way, I would like to thank you for your trust and confidence. I hope and expect to earn it every single day," said Sham, who was also elected in 2006 and re-appointed in 2010. "To everyone else in the city and in every neighborhood and community, I promise to always listen to your concerns. I will work hard every day to earn your trust and confidence as well. I’ll be the representative for everyone, not just for the ones who voted for me."

Officials from neighboring cities attended Monday's City Council meeting to present proclamations to Alhambra’s re-appointed council members. Monterey Park Mayor Pro-Tem Peter Chan and Council Member Teresa Real Sebastian took to the podium to congratulate Ayala, Messina, and Sham. 

“Alhambra is always the envy of the San Gabriel Valley,” Chan said, mentioning the development of Main Street. Chan and Sebastian also noted Alhambra City Council's efforts to draw public support for the completion of the 710.

Alhambra City Council also voted Monday to begin the bidding process for installing a traffic signal at the intersection of New Avenue and Shorb Street. The signal is a joint project with the city of San Gabriel, which will reimburse Alhambra for 30 percent of the cost. 

A 17-year-old girl was hit by a car and killed at the intersection on July 15, 2011. San Gabriel Valley residents petitioned for LED pedestrian signs and reflectors a month after the accident. 

Weren't able to attend Monday's City Council meeting? You can watch it here. City Council usually meets every second and fourth Monday of the month on the second floor of City Hall: 111 S. First St., Alhambra, Calif., 91801. The Dec. 22 meeting is canceled. The next meeting will be on Jan. 12 at 5:30 p.m.

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