There’s more to elections than selecting the next president of the United States.
Local city council and county supervisor elections will impact individuals far more than bigger national ones.
The Associated Students of Delta College, the League of Women Voters of San Joaquin County and KWDC Radio hosted forums May 2-3 for those elections.
Districts 2, 4 and 6 are up for city council elections. Districts 1 and 3 have races for county supervisor seats.
Ninteen candidates had an opportunity to speak to the community members in attendance and watching via KWDC’s live stream.
The forum wasn’t a debate like political viewers are used to.
It was a question and answer event, in which three people from each of the representative hosts asking two questions a piece, six total, to each candidate.
Candidates were granted opening and closing statements, and every response was limited to a minute and a half.
Much of the conversation was about looking toward the future for the city of Stockton still in its post bankruptcy state.
“Looking 3 years is great but we need to look 30 years out. Economy is going to go slow and there is going to be recessions, we have to be prepared for that. We had a surplus last year, and we cannot go crazy with that,” said Michael Blower, appointed incumbent of District 4.
May 2 featured candidates from District 2 and District 6, as well as the county supervisor District 1 panel.
May 3 featured city council District 4 forums and county supervisor District 3. A mayoral forum was also held.
Council District 2’s candidates for election are Steve Colangelo, Rizvi Waqar, Dwight Williams and incumbent Daniel Wright.
Council District 6’s candidates are Gloria Allen, Jesus Andrade, Sam Fant and Zoyla (Zobeyda) Moreno. Not in attendance and relatively unknown was candidate Andrea Torres.
District 4’s candidates are Marcie Bayne, Susan Lenz and incumbent Michael Blower.
The questions were similar for all forums dealing with the biggest issues in Stockton currently. The candidates were asked about the issues of crime, literacy, business and homes.
Candidates discussed the need to hire and retain police officers as the 2013 Measure A and B tax bills stated.
“Police offer retention is the problem that we have here,” said district 2 candidate Dwight William.
District 6, which includes south Stockton and Weston Ranch, candidates spoke about crime and lack of business in the area with current seat holder and mayoral candidate Michael Tubbs in attendance.
“We can’t be quick to say that police is the only answer. Nothing stops a bullet better than a job,” said District 6 candidate Sam Fant.
There was talk of removing “red tape” from preventing business growth in Stockton. Many candidates claimed it was too difficult to create and bring new businesses into the city to help prevent another bankruptcy.
“Poverty, it’s the root cause of everything that has made our community what is now. It causes low educational obtainment; it is the root cause in crime; it’s also what keeps people from getting good jobs,” District 6 candidate Jesus Andrade said.