I’m not even going to touch the Kavanaugh hearings, FBI investigation, the vote, or the swearing in. Needless to say, it’s just a very bad day for the American people. Let’s talk about support for local leaders instead.

I am going to concentrate on the upcoming local municipal elections.  Vote-by-mail ballots go out on Tuesday, Oct. 9, so now is the time give you my thoughts and suggestions.  I am not listing all the candidates, just those I support.  I have respect for anyone who stands up and says I am ready to serve.  Thank you to all.

Desert Hot Springs –

Mayor –

Scott Matas

Scott has done a wonderful job keeping the council focused on the work needed and to end the drama that has plagued this community.  He has led the effort for the cannabis industry further strengthening the city financially.  He is small business owner in the city. He gets my support

City Council –

Adam Sanchez

Gary Gardner

Adam is a past mayor and councilman.  Has worked for decades with the young people of the city and now works as a consultant for cannabis businesses.  He has history as well as current knowledge of the city.

Gary has been serving as a member of the Planning Commission.  He has worked hard to help develop how Desert Hot Springs will look in the future.

Cathedral City –

District 3 –

Mark Carnevale

Mark has lived in Cathedral City for over 30 years and runs Nicolino’s – a valley favorite.  He was first elected in 2014 and has done a great job representing the community.  He has become the council’s go-to guy for information on homelessness.

District 4 –

John Rivera

John served on the Planning Commission for seven years and on the Architectural Review Commission.  He has a solid grasp of the issues facing the city.  He is honest, ethical and willing to buck the system if needed.  John is an architect.

District 5 –

Raymond Gregory

Raymond recently retired as Assistant Sheriff in Riverside County.  He will be a strong voice on law enforcement issues, taking the place of the retiring Stan Henry.

Coachella –

City Council –

Megan Beamen-Jacinto

Megan is a strong candidate.  She is an immigration attorney in a city that is almost 98 percent Hispanic.  She is bright and articulate and will do a great job for Coachella.  She will be replacing Betty Sanchez, who is retiring.  I have great respect for Betty and wish she had chosen to run for Mayor.  She has a young family, however, and needs to spend time with them.

Gilbert Ramirez

Gilbert served on the City Council for several years and after a four-year sabbatical is making a comeback effort.  While seen as a rabble rouser, he is totally committed to Coachella and represents a segment of the population that currently is not listened too.  Gilbert owns a market in Coachella.

Indio –

City Council –

Troy Strange

Troy was first elected in 2014.  He is well-respected throughout the Valley.  He is not a show horse but a work horse and is dedicated to the needs of the city.  He is employed by the Desert Recreation District.

Michael Wilson

Mike is a longtime councilman.  He and I do not agree philosophically on many issues, but we can debate them as walk away friends.  He is currently chairman of the Transportation Committee for the Coachella Valley Association of Governments and serves with me on the Regional Council for the Southern CA Association of Governments.  He is a retired firefighter. He has earned my support.

La Quinta –

City Council –

John Pena

John has served as Mayor and as Councilman.  He is a government affairs consultant.  While I wish he would be a more vocal advocate for the Hispanic population in La Quinta and the valley, he is dedicated to his city and works hard.

Robert Radi

Robert is truly the definition of a gentleman.  He is president of a management and strategic policy consulting firm.  He serves on the Sunline Transit Board.  He is not shy about sharing his opinion, but win or lose, after the vote he is ready to move on to the next issue.

Palm Desert –

City Council –

Sabby Jonathan

Sabby is a first-term member of the Council and currently serves as Mayor.  He chairs CVAG’s homelessness committee.  A CPA by education and training, he is instrumental in keeping Palm Desert fiscally strong.  He is a strong advocate for his city.

Matt Monica

Matt served on the Desert Sands Unified School District Board of Trustees for many years.  He is looking to move to the City Council.  He stands out as an advocate and voice for his policy concerns.  He will stir things up for a city many thinks need to think out of the box. For that reason, he gets my support.

At this juncture I must add at this point that I absolutely love Jan Harnik.  She is hard worker for the city and the Valley.  She is one of the smartest council members here locally.  I made the difficult decision not to recommend her re-election due to how she ran her most recent campaign for County Supervisor.  She would have done a great job in Riverside, but sadly chose to run a very negative and some say racist campaign against Manny Perez.  I know that this is not the Jan I know, and I hope she finds that person again.

Desert Health Care District –

Zone 4 –

Shelley Kaplan

Shelley is a councilmember in Cathedral City and has chosen to step away from that position to run for the Desert Healthcare District Board.  Health care has always been a passion for him and this will be a good fit and a HUGE help to the district and receives my support.

Desert Water Agency –

Jim Cioffi

Jim has served with distinction on the Agency Board.  He understands the needs for water and the needs of the Agency.  An architect, professionally, he has surprised many with his grasp of the issues facing the Agency.

Pat Oygar

Pat is an expert in water policy.  She has served many years on the Agency Board.  She knows better that any other water board member from the valley’s four water boards how things work and what is needed.

3rd seat – no endorsement

Coachella Valley Water Agency

District 1 –

No endorsement

District 3 –

John Powell

Like Pat Oygar, John is the east valley expert on water policy.  He understands the needs of both farmers and residents.  He serves on subcommittee of CVWD board members and Cathedral City councilmembers.  He jumps in and does the work needed. They get my  support.

District 5 –

Castulo Estrada

Bright, articulate, young and full of energy he has brought a new vitality to the Agency.  He represents the Coachella area of the district and comes with the knowledge of growing up in the valley.  He is one of our future valley-wide leaders.

Mission Springs Water District –

Board Members –

Nancy Wright

Nancy is the expert in the northern most part of the valley on water issues.  A fierce protector of the purity of the water in MSWD territory, she is one of the reasons Desert Hot Springs tourism is growing.

2nd seat – no recommendation

Next week my thoughts on statewide races along with Congress and state Senate and Assembly — and who gets my support.



Register, Vote and fight back!!