Academy award winner Woody Allen famously said that, “80 percent of success is showing up.”
Candidates running for office might want to take note.
This past week Encinitas held its first city council candidate forum and three candidates: Kevin Forester, Brian Zeigler and Peter Schuh, failed to show up. My dad Hank says “You can’t get the job if you don’t go on the interview,” and I think he’s right.
Would you hire a candidate who couldn’t show up to answer questions? I wonder if anyone will take the campaigns of Forrester, Zeigler or Schuh seriously.
The six candidates who did show up at the forum included long-term incumbent Jerome Stocks who is seeking a fourth term and council member Mark Muir who was appointed to his seat one year ago.
A significant issue residents brought up at the forum was the growing bar scene in downtown Encinitas and the increase in violence and change in community character. This issue is significant, as the new council will vote on possible changes to land use throughout the city that could change community character of the five communities. As residents along the 101 have discovered, once zoning laws are changed they are seldom changed back.
Earlier this year residents packed city hall asking the council to address the bar issue but the council has failed to provide solutions.
For me this election is shaping up to be a choice between fresh faces and the stale policies of increased public debt, closed government, unfunded liabilities, up-zoning, loss of community character and pension reform.
The fresh faces seeking to change the stale policies of the past include challengers Tony Kranz and Lisa Shaffer. Kranz and Shaffer have been active participants at city hall over the past three years and are well educated on the issues residents are concerned with. Kranz and Shaffer have regularly attended city council meetings and have spoken on important issues.
New Encinitas resident Olivier Canler, who attended the forum Tuesday night, told me he thought Kranz and Shaffer were “respectful to the residents and had in-depth knowledge of city issues.” Candace Kymata, who also attended, told me she thought Kranz and Shaffer “were well informed, confident and demonstrated the content of character we so desperately need in our city.” She went on to say that, “the civility and respect they modeled in response to residents questions stood in stark contrast to Stocks’ responses that were dripping with disdain to those who questioned his policies.”
Two other new challengers for the open seats are Barbara Yost and Thomas Brophy.
While it is a positive that each attended the forum neither has been active at city hall over the past few years. As a voter I am questioning if they are familiar with the complex issues facing the city.
I think it is likely I will learn more about these fresh faces and stale policies in the next few weeks.
It seems in Encinitas we now have two incumbents and four serious challengers for three open city council seats.