Candidates Forum

The November election is just around the corner. To help you get to know the candidates, the SRCA holds its annual Candidates Forum on Tuesday, Oct. 8, at 7 pm at the Scripps Ranch Library. We also offered the candidates the opportunity to submit statements to the SRCA Newsletter. The following did so. The candidates for each office appear in alphabetical order.

Congress–52nd District

Peter Moore-Kochlacs

Friends, what does America need to be secure?

  1. As your future congressman, I believe we need to continue our policy of containment toward Iraq and not go it alone, turning the Middle East into another Vietnam.
  2. A lack of corporate integrity is one of the main threats to American prosperity and public policy. It is time to remove the blindly pro-business legislators from office.
  3. Republicans have already broken their promises to keep Social Security in a lock box and to protect the tax surplus. Under their leadership, we have a huge new federal deficit. In 10 to 15 years, the baby boomers will be retiring. It is unfair to shift the weight of their retirement security to reckless corporations by privatizing Social Security.
  4. This term, anti-environmental Republicans like Duncan Hunter have tried to ease environmental regulations on everything from arsenic in water to air pollution. Currently they are working to please their corporate donors by dumbing down air quality standards at the expense of our children’s health.
  5. Locally–Public education, libraries, affordable housing, smart growth, transportation and congestion, energy, land-use, open space, population growth, social welfare, and homelessness will be very important issues for all the people of San Diego County.

I will not be a one-issue legislator like Mr. Hunter. After 22 years, it is time to term limit Duncan Hunter and elect Peter Moore-Kochlacs to represent a mature San Diego County.

State Senate–36th District

Michael Metti

As a concerned citizen, I have come to the realization that government isn’t working. I see this in our schools, traffic, welfare and health care programs, and everything else that government is interfering with.

Every year we pay more and receive less. Permits and licenses are replacing our rights. As we turn over our rights and responsibilities to bureaucrats and politicians, we see more dependency and less caring becoming commonplace in our society.

We are categorized based on age, wealth, race, sexuality, and anything else they can divide us up by and our money is being shuffled around based on the political shrewdness of special interest groups. It will only get worse if we continue voting for the status quo. I am offering you a choice.

Liberty and self-responsibility is what government should be protecting and promoting. Government wasn’t intended to dispense goods and services since that would be best suited for the free market. Supply based on demand, not politics, creates an environment of care, charity, abundance, and responsibility.

Government should protect us from force and fraud from others, secure our borders, and defend our rights. This can happen for California with your vote.

In Liberty,

District Attorney

Bonnie Dumanis

Superior Court Judge Bonnie Dumanis is a former prosecutor with more than 25 years experience in the criminal justice system. She has been elected to the bench twice and served as a San Diego deputy district attorney for 12 years.

She built the nationally recognized Drug Court, holding drug addicts accountable. She led both the Domestic Violence Court and Metropolitan Homicide Task Force, and currently serves as president of the San Diego Justice Foundation.

More than 13,000 police, fire, and law enforcement personnel have endorsed Judge Dumanis because of her commitment to integrity and ethics. The Deputy District Attorneys Association–who voted no confidence in the current DA and who know the DA’s office best– have also endorsed Dumanis. Judge Dumanis’ endorsements include:

  • Police Officer Associations in San Diego, El Cajon, La Mesa, National City, and Coronado
  • San Diego City Firefighters
  • San Diegans Against Crime
  • San Diego City Schools POA
  • American Federation of Teachers

If elected District Attorney, Bonnie Dumanis will:

  • Make repairing the poor relationship between the administration and deputy district attorneys a top priority.
  • Restore ethics and integrity to the office.
  • Tackle the hundreds of unsolved murders in the county.

If you would like more information, call 619-299-2095 or visit our website at [www.IntegrityForAChange.com].

Paul Pfingst

District Attorney Paul Pfingst has the highest conviction rate in California. Pfingst has prosecuted 800 murderers with over a 98% conviction rate, and won injunctions stopping street gangs from terrorizing our neighborhoods.

He formed a specially trained Rape Prosecution Team that prosecutes rapists and assists victims. Rape prosecutions increased 30% and sentences tripled.

Pfingst started the nationally recognized Elder Abuse Prosecution team and built one of America’s largest Domestic Violence Prosecution divisions. He cares about our families and our kids. Pfingst targets sexual predators using the internet to victimize our children.

Pfingst overhauled child support enforcement, increasing payments to San Diego’s children $100 million annually. His Welfare Fraud program helped cut welfare rolls 61%.

Sheriff Bill Kolender said, “Paul Pfingst is one of the best District Attorneys in America.” California’s DAs elected Pfingst president of the California DA’s Association, leading 1,500 California prosecutors.

The real choice of law enforcement is Paul Pfingst. He is endorsed by the California Organization of Police and Sheriffs (COPS), San Diego Deputy Sheriffs Association, Oceanside Police Officers Association, Escondido Police Officers Association, SD Labor Council, Latino Peace Officers Association, District Attorney Investigators, Service Employees International Union, and the San Diego Probation Officers Association.

Pfingst is nationally recognized. TIME magazine called Paul Pfingst one of the country’s top “Innovators in Justice” for his groundbreaking work in DNA evidence.

San Diego County Treasurer-Tax Collector

Dan McAllister

Dan is treasurer of the San Diego Convention Center Corporation and a professional financial advisor.

It is time for a change: Ethical lapses, sexual harassment, and excessive absenteeism have no place in an office responsible for managing over $3.2 billion of public funds and collecting over $2 billion in taxes annually. Taxpayers deserve the highest standards of integrity and professionalism from the county’s Treasurer-Tax Collector.

Since 2000 the county’s Public Retirement Fund reported losses of nearly a half-billion dollars. Retirees deserve to know their assets are safeguarded. The Treasurer-Tax Collector is the only publicly elected member of the County Retirement Board, overseeing $3.7 billion of retirement funds.

Experience you can trust: Treasurer of the San Diego Convention Center Corporation; professional financial advisor; past president of the local council, Boy Scouts of America; United Way Board of Directors and Finance Committee.

Family: A second-generation San Diegan, my wife, Cathy, and I have two children, Katie and Patrick, and live in Solana Beach. I am 51 years old and hold a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.

Endorsements: Sheriff Bill Kolender, Assessor Greg Smith, Mayor Dick Murphy, the mayors of 15 other San Diego County cities, County Supervisors, San Diego Deputy Sheriffs and Police Officers Associations, San Diego City Firefighters, Retired Fire and Police Association, and The San Diego Union-Tribune.

I would appreciate your vote.

School Board

John de Beck

As the only San Diego School Board member ever elected directly from the classroom, I understand how San Diego teachers feel when the school district brings in “experts” from elsewhere to tell them how to teach. When I taught, I had one supervisor–the principal.

Now, high school teachers may have five people looking over their shoulders, each telling them how to improve instruction. These teachers leave their students with substitutes for days on end to go to mandatory training sessions to be told things they may already know.

This “investment” in our teachers now exceeds $60 million dollars per year. So the superintendent says this expense is justified–look at how test scores have gone up! He wouldn’t wait for the state results to find out how well our students do against the rest.

His media supporters trumpet “Glee over Gains” without question. So here’s what we really got–no relative gain between the state test scores and San Diego. So our kids did not learn more than others in the state, despite San Diego’s $220 million expenditures on the Blueprint. And most of our high schools’ SAT performance dropped as well. No wonder I am critical of Superintendent Alan Bersin’s experiment with San Diego’s children.

Clyde Fuller

Clyde Fuller is a 27-year veteran of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a member of three school site councils, a volunteer “rolling reader” at three schools, and a member of the Special Education Advisory Committee. Along with his wife, Chris, Clyde is also the parent of two young daughters who attend San Diego public schools.

As a school volunteer and parent activist, Clyde has seen how political strife has paralyzed the school board and damaged morale in our local schools. He believes our children deserve problem-solvers, not problem-makers, on the school board.

Clyde has pledged to get our schools back on track by giving parents and teachers a greater voice, restoring rational, civil discussion at board meetings, increasing accountability to parents, reducing administrative overhead, and putting more resources in classrooms.

As a retired federal investigator, Clyde is skilled in asking tough questions and pursuing the truth. He specialized in fraud, counter-terrorism, white-collar crime, and special operations.

He is independent and willing to stand up for our children, regardless of where the problems lie. He filed a landmark complaint challenging district administrators and leading to a new district-wide K-12 special education program.

Clyde serves as chair of the non-alcoholic, family-oriented Pacific Beach Beachfest and of the U.S. National Lifeguard Championships. He led the campaign for a girls’ softball field at Pacific Beach Elementary, and was recognized by San Diego Lifeguards as their “Citizen of the Year.”

Clyde’s candidacy is endorsed by Sheriff Bill Kolender, six San Diego City councilmembers, Assemblyman Juan Vargas, parents, teachers, and principals throughout the district.

Jeff Lee

Jeff Lee is a retired, decorated naval officer and a parent with two sons at Scripps Ranch High School. He is a strong advocate for a comprehensive education program, with strong math, science, social studies, history, languages, music, art, and athletics.

A strong supporter of effective intervention for struggling students, Jeff will work to guarantee that no child is left behind. A fiscal conservative, Jeff knows that we must use first-rate management practices to ensure that more money makes it to the classroom for up-to-date textbooks, smaller class sizes, and to ensure safe, clean, and well-maintained neighborhood schools.

Jeff has demonstrated a strong commitment to a quality education for our children through his 10 years as an educational advocate. Independent and reform-minded, he will lead the fight for better accountability for our superintendent and school board and for real results for all San Diego students.

Jeff’s campaign is a grassroots campaign supported by parents and classroom teachers. Among his many endorsements are the San Diego Education Association representing 9,000 teachers, the Police Officers Association of San Diego City Schools, the Peace Officers Research Association of California for San Diego/Imperial Counties, the California School Employees Association, Parents for Real Education Reform, Mathematically Correct–a math reform network–and VOTE, Voters for Truth in Education.

You can learn more about Jeff Lee and his campaign to move the school district forward and bring real reform with real results to our public schools by visiting his website at [www.JeffLeeSchoolBoard2002.com].

San Diego Community College Board, District C

Steve Schulman

I won the March primary having defeated my four opponents. I have degrees in accounting from Arizona State University and a law degree from California Western School of Law. My background will enable me to make prudent fiscal decisions while overseeing the San Diego Community College District’s $350 million budget.

I am on the San Diego State Aztec Athletic Foundation Board, volunteered with Easter Seals, am a member of the Consumer Attorneys of San Diego, and a Judge Pro Tem.

I promise to provide a safe and technologically advanced working and learning environment; increase San Diego’s fair share of funding; assist students in their ability to transfer to the California State University and University of California systems; and, improve building facilities and parking.

I am endorsed by educators, police officers, and firefighters. My endorsements include San Diego Community College Board President Marty Block, Vice President Maria Senour, and member William H. Schwandt.

Other endorsements include: The San Diego-Imperial Counties Labor Council; San Diego Port Commissioner Stephan Cushman; County Assessor Gregory Smith; San Diego City Councilmember Donna Frye; State Senator Dede Alpert; Assemblywoman Christine Kehoe; the California Faculty Association–San Diego State University; American Postal Workers Union–San Diego; the Faculty Coalition For Public Higher Education; and, the Service Employees International Union, local 2028.

San Diego Community College Board, District E

Hattie Bryant

Hattie Bryant has been involved in adult education in the private sector since 1979. As a teacher in the classrooms of small businesses, she worked to prepare employees to move up in their organizations. She grew up in Del Cerro and attended Hearst Elementary, Lewis Junior High, and graduated from Hoover High School.

Hattie is the Reform candidate and did not seek the backing of any unions. Her first priority is to increase the number of community college graduates who go on to complete a four-year degree. Second, she wants to see the growth and development of new certification programs. And, third, she wants to focus the not-for-credit curriculum on relevant workforce skills.

Hattie and her husband created “Small Business School,” a series that airs on 200 PBS stations. They offer continuing professional education hours for certified public accountants at the website [http://SmallBusinessSchool.org/cpe]. The couple lives near City College.

Hattie is endorsed by: Bob Bacon, “Professor of the Year” and teacher at Mesa, City, and Miramar Colleges and former president of the Faculty Senate; Michele Nash-Hoff, president of the City College Citizen’s Advisory Council; Rick Alexander, Grossmont-Cuyamaca College District Trustee; Anna Garcia, chair, City College Foundation Board; Southwestern College District Trustee Dr. Jeanne Roesch; Chula Vista Mayor Shirley Horton; State Assemblyman Jay La Suer; and, Dr. Bobbi Forcier, principal of De Portola Middle School.

Questions? Learn more at [http://SmallBusinessSchool.org], email Hattie at [[email protected]], or call 619-232-4270.

Peter Zschiesche

Peter won the District E primary with over 50% of the vote among five candidates and by a margin of more than 2 to 1 over his nearest opponent. He is the only candidate endorsed by educators, community college faculty and staff, community leaders, legislators, labor, and police officer and firefighter organizations. Peter Zschiesche has the broad-based support necessary to ensure quality and equity in local community colleges.

San Diego Community Colleges offer many of our young adults the first steps towards a four-year college education. They provide great opportunities for all workers to improve their skills and create new career paths that provide living wages and benefits. Peter currently serves on advisory committees at all three colleges. He has an M.B.A. and brings over 15 years of experience in local workforce development.

Peter Zschiesche will be a strong advocate of our community colleges at the state level during these difficult economic times. He will be more active in bringing our communities’ voices to the San Diego Community College District. Lastly, Peter has the professional experience and fiscal savvy necessary to provide better quality oversight of district operations.

Professional experience: San Diego Workforce Investment Board; San Diego Economic Development Task Force; Financial Advisor, U.S. Army.