Patrick “Kit” Bobko was installed as Mayor of Hermosa Beach for the second time on Tuesday. He replaced outgoing Mayor Jeff Duclos, and councilman Michael DiVirgilio became vice mayor.
“It’s scary and intimidating to run meetings and be the face of the city,” said councilmember and former mayor Howard Fishman. “But what I tell you is that it is a once in a lifetime type of opportunity to serve.”
Bobko was first elected to the city council in 2006 and re-elected in 2009. Because of the city’s rotating positions, Bobko was mayor during his first term in 2007.
“I’ve been here once before and I want to express to everyone how honored and gratified I am to hold this job for you,” said Bobko. “I understand this position here isn’t an award, it’s an assignment and I take that very seriously and I think you all for bestowing upon me the honor to serve you.”
Among his priorities this time around he said he wants to always be open and transparent.
“There is nothing that we do that you shouldn’t be aware of,” Bobko said during Tuesday night’s installation ceremony. “Nothing should occur behind closed doors or out of site, everything we do, we do for you. As mayor I will take that very seriously.”
He also wants to make the city’s meetings paperless. Another of his goals is to close ranks with the Hermosa Beach school system and make safety a priority for the city’s citizens.
“I’m committed that everyone in this community from the oldest to the most vulnerable are safe,” said Bobko. He also said he hopes to discuss school safety at a joint meeting with the school board on Wednesday and push the city’s police and fire departments to conduct a complete assessment within the next 120 days of any additional safety measures needed at the schools.
Bobko also wants to adopt a more goal-oriented approach to budgeting and city priorities. According to a press release, the city council recently launched an extensive process to create a vision for the city’s future and a set of goals to guide the city and inform the public about the council’s priority. Working with a professional consultant, the council and city leaders met for two lengthy sessions in December and have a session set for Feb. 9 to continue developing a set of goals.
Duclos will continue to be busy with his recently appointed position as the California Coastal Commission’s South Coast alternate appointee, representing Los Angeles and Orange counties.
“Being mayor has meant to me more than I could have ever imagined,” said Duclos. “I cannot thank the people of Hermosa Beach enough for the opportunity to serve my community in that special way.” ER