Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez appointed San Diego City Councilman Ben Hueso to the state Coastal Commission today after months of speculation that the councilman would be appointed by his boyhood chum.

The commission post oversees development and land use on California’s coast and is considered a prestigious assignment in political circles.

Hueso will be one of six elected officials statewide who are appointed to the 12-member board. The councilman will serve out the final two years of former Chula Vista Mayor Steve Padilla, who was ousted from office by voters in November.

Several other local officials were mentioned as possible appointees leading up to Wednesday’s selection: Encinitas Councilwoman Maggie Houlihan, Chula Vista Councilman Steve Castaneda, Oceanside Councilman Jack Feller, Carlsbad Councilwoman Ann Kulchin, Del Mar Councilwoman Crystal Crawford and Coronado Councilwoman Carrie Downey.

EVAN McLAUGHLIN

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