Thursday, April 8, 2010

Clairemont Debate - Part 1 Clairemont Town Council

Tonight's debate was actually part of a regularly scheduled meeting of the Clairemont Town Council. To be honest, I have heard of these town councils before, and am not really sure what their raison d'ĂȘtre is. However, they performed a good service by getting candidates together for a well-moderated and useful debate. Before I get into the debate, I wanted to report on the Council meeting itself, because it had both uplifting and jaw dropping moments.

We started the evening with Boy Scout Pack 277 color guard presenting the colors and the pledge of allegiance. It was good to hear everyone say "under God" without hesitation.

Some other pre-debate business:
From Assemblywoman Kehoe's office, her rep, Andrew Kemmerly told us a few things. She is introducing legislation to create a Del Mar greenway to preserve a buffer zone between the fairgrounds and the river as well as self defense training in high schools, still in draft. The self defense training is in response to the murder of Chelsea King in Poway. Information on where to view the district's stimulus spending breakdown was provided. Christine Kehoe is claiming that about $631 million was spent in our little state senate district. Jobs saved? 684. When I quizzed Andrew about this, he helpfully explained that this also includes infrastructure, so the million dollars per job was not really accurate. Glad to see the state senator's aide can do math. And the finale was the announcement of a California cash for appliances program; good grief, I thought we were broke.

Becoming A Champion getting cut off was unintentionally ironic.

From the City Attorney's office was a reminder of something entirely forgettable.

Donna Frye was the only pre-debate speaker greeted with applause. She passed out handouts of Fryelights. She recently filed a lawsuit against the city of San Diego over the financial analysis of the "strong mayor" city proposition D. The mayor's financial analysis required for the proposition said the cost was any where from zero to a million. Donna made the entirely reasonable point that zero was probably not happening when part of the deal was creating a new city council district. The city settled the next day and I presume the language will be changed. I have often disagreed with her positions, but I must say that Donna Frye was amazingly short and sweet; I can see why she is so popular.

Fire Capt. Praizner brought handouts to explain fire safety and the brown out issue. More on that some other post, perhaps.

The Debate:

Questions were collected from the audience members at the start of the debate. I had no way of knowing if my question would be asked. Candidates were allowed short opening statements.

Introductions by the moderator, Gina Lew, were straight out of the candidates' web sites. Each candidate was then allowed to make their own opening statement.

Steve Hadley: Really emphasized his years as Donna Frye's chief of staff, ten years? He has been endorsed by Frye, but didn't over play that card. Claimed to be a fiscal conservative and socialyl progressive. Talked about serving as a former pastor and really emphasized all the constituent service he has performed. Initial impression: Consummate insider.

Ryan Huckabone: Talked about his background growing up in San Diego, going to Chico State, serving as an army linguist in Mandarin Chines in Hawaii. He said specifics about the issues are important. How will that contractor fix your fence? It's important to make sure candidates know specifics. Initial impression: Regular guy.

Howard Wayne: Talked about the importance of neighborhoods. He served many years as a Deputy Atty General, some years in the Assembly. Big contributions are monitoring of beach water cleanliness and funding for curbside recycling in San Diego. He emphasized his local roots: Hoover high, SDSU, Clairemont Town Council member. Initial impression: Regular politician.

Lori Zapf: Starting talking about raising school age daughters. Talked about Clairemont being a great community, but is in decline the past few years. Library hours, roads and potholes, fewer police and firefighters. Talked about running her own natural foods company, and restoring fiscal sanity. Initial impression: Tough cookie, publicly inexperienced.

My debate notes need to get typed, and I'm not sure if I should just summarize or go into each question chronologically. I'll post more tomorrow. I'd like your input on how to summarize the rest of the 90 minute debate.

1 comment:

  1. Summarize but drill down on the Q and As that you feel require the needed attention as per your post a couple of days ago alerting us to this event.