I’d like to thank The Coast News for allowing me to respond to the commentary from Don Barth, husband of former Councilmember Teresa Barth, who is considering running for mayor, although he is a top donor to mayoral candidate (Catherine) Blakespear.
I am 100 percent supportive of Mr. Barth’s entry and encourage him to enter, as a vibrant discussion about the future of our great community is a healthy part of the governing process.
I am, however, disappointed by the divisive rhetoric and negativity in Mr. Barth’s commentary (“Why I’m considering running for mayor of Encinitas,” Aug. 12).
Instead of focusing on what he would do, he seems more interested in partisan politics and drawing lines in the sand to divide the community, rather than what is important to the residents of Encinitas.
He laid out what he is against and that’s the problem.
We need leaders who are running for something. This strengthens my resolve to run a positive campaign based on my own vision and experience. I will not engage in nasty, partisan rhetoric that citizens have grown weary of, that unfortunately other candidates are eager to engage in.
I am running for mayor because I care deeply about our community and want to provide experienced leadership that strikes the right balance among the various interests of our five communities.
My leadership skills and judgment have been tested growing a small physical therapy business to seven locations, employing nearly 150 people, and caring for 6,500 patients annually. My service on local, state, and national boards has led to several laws being enacted and many policies harmful to citizens being defeated.
I have been an integral part of the fabric of Encinitas for over two decades, giving my time and financial resources to numerous Encinitas organizations, including Encinitas Little League, Encinitas Rotary, San Dieguito Sports Medicine Foundation, Encinitas Chamber of Commerce, and Pop Warner (partial list).
While my wife Kristin and I are not the same person, I will bring a similar style of respectful, professional leadership, and priorities, which led to her winning over 90 percent of Encinitas precincts in the primary for county supervisor.
I will also keep political baggage and divisive partisan issues out of City Hall and the decision-making process. I will support projects that bring our communities together, like the Encinitas Community Park, Moonlight Beach renovation, Santa Fe Avenue Railroad Undercrossing, and the Veteran’s Homeless Initiative, which was supported unanimously by the council, and is currently being implemented.
I will be effective at council meetings, just as my wife has been, attending 217/220 council meetings (about 99 percent attendance) and about whom Councilmember Blakespear said, “I consistently admire Mayor Gaspar’s ability to run an upbeat, positive and efficient City Council meeting. She is a very skilled facilitator, masterfully and gracefully managing the public, staff, and council members for hours at a time.”
As mayor I will be a fair judge on all issues, working with everyone to foster an environment of respect and progress, not bringing preconceived agendas. I have an amiable temperament and will be steady, making the right decision the first time — not blaming others for mistakes.
I am running for mayor because I want to offer my vast experience and skills to a city where I live, work, and plan to spend the rest of my life.
I hope to earn your support this November.
Dr. Paul Gaspar, DPT is an Encinitas resident.