The Sonoma Valley community is fortunate to have several citizens offering to serve as our elected representatives. We thank them, as we believe that just having a competitive election helps to energize local discussions about the appropriate role and reach of government. We trust the collective voice of our community, especially when contested elections help the voters make well-informed choices.
Two of the City Council candidates stand out in our minds, and we’re pleased to endorse them. First is David Cook, who has distinguished himself by attending city council meetings for the last two years, giving us and others an opportunity to hear his positions on issues that have come before the Council. In the process, he has demonstrated a clear awareness of guiding principles. As a small business owner, he understands the pressures our local businesses face in these difficult economic times; he knows what it’s like to meet payroll, to comply with local ordinances, and to be an active member of the business community. And during this time Cook has gotten to know the city staff, and they have gotten to know him, factors that will allow him to make a positive, immediate impact as a member of our City Council.
We also endorse Madolyn Agrimonti for City Council. As her campaign slogan says, “Experience Counts!” Actually, “experience shows” is of more importance to us. While there is an incumbent running for re-election to the Council, and so by definition has experience, what we like about Agrimonti’s experience is her record of principled, practical positions at the Community Center, which receives financial assistance from the city, and on the Sonoma Valley Hospital board, which has a budget bigger than the city’s. She knows how to weigh competing interests and to make sound decisions. She understands how county and state government decisions impact us locally, knowledge needed on the council to be sure our interests are protected. Agrimonti has more experience than any of the candidates for city council.
We’re disappointed we can’t vote now for a local, Sonoma Valley candidate to serve as the District 1 County Supervisor. We’ve noted in the past how powerful the position is, as the Board often defers to the inclinations of the individual supervisor for the district in which a project is located. Of the two Santa Rosa candidates, we believe John Sawyer is the better choice. We appreciate that fact that he is not a newcomer to Sonoma Valley, with generations of historical knowledge and a commitment to protect its rural character. He has the fewest partisan obligations, bringing minimal bias to decisions, which will be needed soon on a myriad of serious issues with long-term implications, among them pension reform, labor relations, and budget structure. And his decades of local small business experience ensure his sensitivity to the needs of the small businesses that keep our local economy productive.
However you are inclined to vote for these influential offices, please don’t forget to do so on November 6. We are blessed to live in a free society, and it’s up to all of us to make sure we protect those freedoms by voting. We recommend that our readers vote for Cook, Agrimonti, and Sawyer.