Waymond Fermon, a correctional officer, seeks seat in State Assembly

INDIO — City Councilmember Waymond Fermon, 43, who ran unopposed in his bid for reelection to the City Council in 2022, has confirmed for Uken that he will seek the state Assembly seat that Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia now holds.

Without explanation, Garcia did not file the paperwork necessary to seek reelection. Since the incumbent did not file, the deadline has been extended to Dec. 13, German Cervantes, election technician for the Imperial County Registrar of Voters, told Uken Report.

There are now at least five people eyeing the seat: Fermon; Pastor Jeff Gonzalez, who challenged Garcia in 2018 as a Republican; Joey Acuna, a Democrat; Eric L. Rodriguez, a social worker from Imperial declared his candidacy for the seat on Nov. 27; and Kalin Morse, a nonprofit director from Westmorland, declared candidacy Nov. 27, according to the Imperial County Registrar of Voters.

Fermon is running on the theme: “Unite, Empower, Thrive: Waymond Fermon for Assembly District 36”

He believes in civil rights for all.

Assembly District 36 encompasses the cities of Riverside, Imperial, and San Bernardino counties, such as Indio, Coachella, Mecca, Thermal, Blythe, Westmoreland, Holtville, Heber, Brawley, El Centro, Calipatria, Imperial, Calexico, Blythe, Salton Sea Beach, Seely, Winterhaven and Needles.

“Since 2018, I have had the privilege of serving the city of Indio as a councilmember and as its first African American mayor,” Fermon told Uken Report. “Indio is the largest city in Assembly District 36 and strives in providing families with a diversity of housing, higher educational opportunities, advanced health care, senior services, and a quality of life like no other.”

Indio is famous for its rich history, arts, entertainment, food, and festivals —including the world-famous Coachella Music and Arts Festival.

“I also helped to ensure the Coachella Music and Arts Festival will remain in Indio to at least 2050, which brings millions of dollars to the state and region,” Fermon said.

Additionally, for the past 22 years, I have proudly served as a correctional officer in Imperial County at Calipatria State Prison.  I have also served on local and regional committees focused on water, energy, homelessness, tourism, public safety, and transportation.

“During my tenure in public office, I have confronted challenges like COVID-19, homelessness, housing shortages, mental wellness issues, and social/environmental injustices,” Fermon said.

In response to the pandemic, he helped secure and allocate more than $750,000 in grants for small businesses and daycare centers, as well as helped families with rental and legal assistance. He has also worked to support more than 1,000 new affordable housing units for working families in Indio.

“Ensuring educational opportunities, the health and public safety of families in AD 36 is paramount to building thriving communities and attracting new businesses,” Fermon said.  “Safe communities and small businesses are the foundations to success. I have been at the forefront of this effort, championing public safety in our valley by engaging our youth, faith-based communities, nonprofits, and promoting community-oriented policing. Simultaneously, I have advocated to provide additional community resources and mentorships that help in the efforts of prevention and intervention.

My commitment extends to those facing housing insecurity, where I have been a boots-on-the-ground advocate for affordable housing and to make it easier to build housing without disrupting local control, Fermon added.

“I worked to approve a Behavior Health Clinic to bring advanced mental wellness to our community. As a mayor, I also supported the governor’s Care Court initiative, which brings essential wrap-around services to our most chronically homeless and mentally challenged individuals in our streets,” he said.

With my 22 years of service in Imperial County, I recognize its great qualities and rich history, but I also understand the challenges and efforts residents and businesses are facing in Imperial County with water rights, homelessness, jobs that pay a living wage, access to quality health care, educational opportunities, senior services, quality of life needs, and equally important, the Salton Sea restoration, Fermon said.

“Furthermore, it is critical that we usher in the Lithium Valley with equitable opportunities to the region such as stimulating the local revenue base, employment, economic opportunities, and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions while preserving the Salton Sea.”

My dedication also extends to transportation and climate change. I have traveled to Washington, D.C., to advocate for the Coachella Valley Rail (CV Rail) Project which will combat climate change, provide economic and education opportunities in the Coachella Valley, Fermon said. “The goal of the CV Rail is to revitalize and expand passenger rail across the country and that begins in the Coachella Valley, and in the future, extends to Imperial County and onto Arizona. This has been a continued effort, and the baton is in our hands. We need representation in Sacramento to advocate for this project, and I am the person to best complete this task.”

Make no mistake, this is a very important race! Representation matters and we need honest leadership in Sacramento that well represent, advocate, and fight for our district with the utmost sense of integrity, Fermon said.

I am dedicated to serving the 36th Assembly District, I seek your support. To contact me or my campaign, please send your comments or questions to [email protected].







Image Sources

  • 2023-Waymond-Fermon-800×568: Waymond Fermon