Fresno Bee voter guide

Welcome to our guide for Election 2016 races. Compare candidates' views side by side, then create your own ballot, which you can print or email.

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Woodlake City Council {_getChooseLabel(this.selections.length)}

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  • Florencio Jr. Guerra
    (N)

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    William H. Lewis
    (N)

  • Joe Martinez
    (N)

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    Rudy Mendoza
    (N)

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Biographical Information

In your opinion, what are the city's top three challenges? How would you address each of these issues?

The drought has affected communities throughout the Valley, especially those that depend on agriculture. What steps, if any, should the city take to diversify its economy? What steps would you propose?

Gangs have committed crimes and taken lives in communities throughout the Valley. What strategies would you propose the city undertake to keep kids away from gangs, and to help those in gangs give up the gang life?

Why are you the best candidate to serve on the city council? (Text or YouTube video.)

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Age 65
Residence Woodlake
Family Married 28 years 5 children 5 grandchildren
Education B.S. In Business Administration from Cal. State U. Long Beach.
Occupation Retired City Administrator
Public service experience 31 years in local government finance including 15 years as the Woodlake City Administrator
1. Water. Obviously without water, there is nothing. As a City we can do more besides restricting watering and issuing citations to violators. The City can do more to decrease demand of water. I'd offer two proposals. First of all, new subdivisions should get away from installing sprinklers and installing grass. Xeriscape principals should be used including, but not limited to drought tolerant landscaping, the use of succulents, and the use of rocks. Secondly, the City should take these principles to existing property owners and offer incentives to convert their property to lessen their use of water. 2. Public Safety. Providing public safety services is the number one reason for having a local government. We must insure staffing levels are sufficient to provide superior services to the public we serve. We must also insure they have proper training and equipment so that they can do their job better, more efficient and effective. 3. Unemployment. Woodlake, being off the beaten path, has had a hard time getting business and industry to relocate here. A concerted effort needs to be made to market to businesses that we can accommodate with our current infrastructure.
Of course diversification provides many benefits, but at the end of the day, in the valley, agriculture is still king. Woodlake currently has vacant, industrially zoned property, with utilities available for sale. The Woodlake Airport can accommodate airport related businesses. The infrastructure is in place to attract industry. The next job is to do a better job of marketing that property.
Gang initiations start at an early age. Intervention needs to start at an earlier age. Intervention methods can include after school programs, organized recreation programs, and positive police interactions. However, there is no substitute for a good family structure and a good education. There also needs to be consequences for unlawful behavior, and punishment needs to be commensurate with that behavior.
Having spent my career in local government, gives me a unique perspective on the ins and outs of the city operations. Being retired allows me the time needed to do the job well. I am always available, and can be reached at 564-2037. I'd be honored to have your vote.
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Residence Woodlake
Family Wife Mirla and three children, ages 19, 17, 10
Education Woodlake Union High School
Occupation Small Business Owner
Public service experience Woodlake City Council 2008 - Present
Budget, Economic Development and Crime. After taking office, my council and I have worked tirelessly to eliminated waist and have balanced the budget over the past five years which is completely unheard of for the community of Woodlake. We have embarked on a Renaissance period of our city over the last five years by building infrastructure and increasing consumer confidence without raising taxes. We have attracted business and are growing faster than the county average. Our crime rates in the city are lower compared to any city in the county per capita thanks to a community that has partnered with local government and the police department. We boast many community programs that provide for extracurricular activities for our children without government interference. We will continue this partnership well into the future as it has provided for many positive results to the community.
The drought has been made worse by bad government policy. Every community in the state has been faced with drastic reductions to water consumption and our city was no exception. Well before the Governor called for a 25% reduction in water consumption, our community came together and nearly doubled that expectation by 49% in the first year. We have not only met but we have exceeded the mandates thanks to a resilient community that understands the impacts and is willing to do their part. While our city has done its part, it is now up to the federal government to do what is right and a eliminate bad legislative policy dumps millions of acre feet of water into the Pacific ocean every day. This is the real solution to the long-term sustainability of our communities which if it continues to go unaddressed, it will detrimentally impact our communities and the future of economic development.
The answer is simple, it all starts at home. There is no better deterrent to gang activity like a strong and cohesive family unit. If parents are actively engaged in the lives of their children, then children are less likely to be involved in gang activity. When a local government gets involved, unfortunately, it is at a point where children have actively been involved in such activity and it is almost too late. We boast some of the lowest crime rate per capita in our county thanks to a partnership with our community and the many parents involved in the day-to-day activities of their children.
I bring a commonsense, straightforward approach to dealing with issues. First, as an elected official, I make myself available to every member of my community on a day-to-day basis. Second, as an elected official you must seek to understand the problem and then you work proactively to address the issue. There is no better indicator as to my personal progress in the city as a record which I have acquired over the past eight years as a member of the council. Along with my council, we have been exemplary at reducing waste, balancing the budget for the last five straight years and increasing consumer confidence which have been the cornerstones of my first campaign and they have never wavered. I will continue to do the work that I was elected to do thanks to the support of the community. I humbly ask the community of Woodlake to reelect me for a third term in order to serve them their behalf.