Endorsement: Kenneth Mejia for city controller
Kenneth Mejia is the man for City Controller, and not just because he’s Hispanic and Catholic.
Mejia has shown that he is a talented negotiator and has good political instincts. He knows how to work a room, and he knows his community. He knows how to get things done in the city his community, but knows how to talk to the business community. His success in Sacramento points to a bright future where a diverse population puts the city first.
When Mejia took office as controller, he was under the impression that the city faced an important budget deficit. The state legislature approved a $9.9-million state bond for the city’s police and fire departments, making the mayor’s and council members’ jobs much easier.
In a tough economy, the city is facing a $32-million deficit. But in Mejia’s first budget in April, the city has a surplus of $30,726,741, which was the largest surplus of any city in California. The largest surplus in the last four years was during the Great Recession, and Mejia says, “When you’re in tough times, you have to cut, or you will end up in a worse budget situation.”
Despite his success, Mejia knows that the budget situation can happen to any city where the leadership is not there. Mejia knows that he must be the right person to put a plan in place to reduce the deficit. I expect that he is going to be a better manager than the last mayor, and I expect to see him at the very top of the line to head the City of Stockton.
Mejia says, “I want to be a strong leader and set an example for young people.” That’s the image that I want to have when I’m the mayor. That’s what I’m going to work on. I’m going to have the best leadership skills in the city. I want to be able to inspire people.