PALM DESERT — Steven Moyer, 75, a law professor, mediator and retired trial lawyer, is seeking the District 2 seat on the Palm Desert City Council in the Nov. 3 election.

His entry into the race brings to four the number of people seeking one of two seats in District 2. The other three are: incumbents Gina Nestande, a real estate agent, and Kathleen Kelly, an ordained pastor, and Evan Trubee, owner of Palm Desert-based Big Wheel Tours.

In District 1, Karina Quintanilla, an educator and one of two residents who sued Palm Desert last year to end at-large voting and bring the city in compliance with the California Voting Rights Act with district voting, is challenging incumbent Susan Marie Weber.

Kelly, an ordained minister, and Nestande, a real estate agent, each are seeking a second four-year term. Weber, an accountant, is pursuing a third term.

Uken Report posed a series of questions to Moyer,

Uken Report  (UR): Why specifically are you running?

Steven Moyer: While the City Council’s recent approval of a two- district voting map is a good first step, I strongly believe it did not go nearly far enough to bring the City into compliance with the California Voting Rights Act.  Eighty percent of the City is in District 2, which preserves at-large voting for four out of five City Council seats.  I am informed and believe that all four of those seats are held by my neighbors in South Palm Desert, all of whom live within a mile or two of one another.  This means that the decisions for the eighty percent of the city who live in District 2 are made by four councilpersons who live in South Palm Desert.  I don’t believe this fair and equal representation for the rest of the residents in District 2.  I also think the City Council is not doing enough in the area of public health, from promoting the health of our residents’ and visitors’ (mask wearing, distancing, etc.) and affordable housing.  Naturally, all of us are concerned about revitalizing the local economy, including making CSU at Palm Desert a four-year university.

UR: Family:

Steven Moyer: I am married and today (August 13) is our 48th anniversary.  I have the time to respond to this, because my wife, Joan, is a psychotherapist and is seeing clients via telehealth today.  I have two sons and a wonderful daughter-in-law.  David and his wife, Andrea, live in Culver City.  He’s a professional jazz musician (saxophone) and is Director of Jazz Studies at El Camino College.  Andrea is a graphic artist.  My son Alex lives in the Faircrest Heights section of LA is teaching high school students online.  As yet, we don’t have grandchildren.  We do have two beautiful standard poodles.

UR: How long  have you lived in Palm Desert?

Steven Moyer: 10 years.

UR: What qualifies you to serve on City Council?

Steven Moyer: As a trial lawyer in civil practice, I represented municipalities in lawsuits.  I am uniquely aware of the liability issues facing cities and city councils.  As such, I am also in a position to evaluate the contract and work of the City Attorney (an outside law firm).

UR: How would you describe yourself?

Steven Moyer: I began my legal career as a Public Defender in L.A. and subsequently became a civil trial lawyer.  In both capacities, I fought for my clients.  Although I have been a fighter for my clients when necessary, as a mediator I bring all sides together to resolve their problems.  I also teach law at the California Deserts College of Law (“CDTA”) in Indio.  As an educator, I (try to) open people’s minds to new and different ideas.

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