DOWNEY - Local attorney Alexis "Alex" Saab will run for the City Council's District 4 seat, set to be vacated by Mayor Anne Bayer in November.According to a press release announcing his candidacy, Saab graduated from UC Irvine and received a juris doctorate degree from Loyola Law School. He opened his Downey law firm business shortly after graduation. "Growing up in Downey, I feel a sense of debtness to the city," Saab said in a telephone interview. "I love the city very much. I‚Äàfeel now is a good time to try to contribute in any way I can." Saab, 34, praised the accomplishments of the current council, calling them "great." "The city's done well attracting new businesses and I think we need to continue that path," said Saab, who sits on the board of directors for the Downey Chamber of Commerce. "Downey has a tradition of fiscally conservative councils and our budget reflects that. We've had our problems, but compared regionally and even internationally, Downey has shown they can save for a rainy day." The city is currently facing a $4.8 million budget deficit. A subcommittee was formed last week to look at options on how to deal with it. Asked for ideas on how he would trim the budget, Saab said "we need to make sure we don't cut any jobs." "My priority is to ensure no staff members are laid off," he said. "Second, we'll have to evaluate spending and, if necessary, make some adjustments. Obviously that is something that would have to be studied more closely." Regarding housing downtown, Saab, who serves on numerous committees of the Downey Board of Realtors, said he "hasn't taken a position." "I think many residents don't want housing there, but I haven't taken a position because I'm not privy to not all the requirements regarding funds." How can Downey be improved?‚ÄàBy encouraging more business, Saab said. "People want to see that downey is being proactive," said Saab, who serves as a trustee for the Southeast District Bar Association. "I think people want to see their government be proactive and not just wait around for the economy to improve." Bayer will be termed out of office this November. Councilman Mario Guerra faces reelection in District 2. Saab said he has lived in Downey his entire life. He is married to Giovanna and together they have a 1 1/2-year-old son named Dominic.
********** Published: March 5, 2010 - Volume 8 - Issue 46