Wednesday Aug 18 2010
8 file for 2 city council seats
By: Lauren Gibbs, The Placer Herald
Eight Rocklin residents are hoping to nab one of two seats on the Rocklin City Council. The seats are those of Councilwoman Kathy Lund and Mayor Scott Yuill. In June, long-time Councilwoman Lund announced she would not be seeking re-election for city council, while Yuill announced he would be running for re-election. The other candidates for council include Greg Janda, Mark Klang, Gary Lane, Michael Patrick Murphy, Michael Rose, Diana Ruslin and Aman Singh. Janda, 47, has owned and operated a technology business for 13 years. He is also a graduate of the Leadership Rocklin program with the Rocklin Area Chamber of Commerce. “As someone who has had to balance budgets and adjust my business to be in line with our revenues, I know that to improve our city going forward, will require setting priorities and making tough decisions,” Janda said. “Rocklin needs an aggressive program to attract and retain businesses. The city’s spending needs to be consistent with the economic realities of 2010.” Klang, a retired Air Force officer, is also focusing his campaign on monetary issues and attracting business. If elected, Klang said he would focus on transforming Rocklin into a destination city. “We can not blame the economy for all the empty storefronts in our city,” he said. “We have a council that has talked about a downtown for over 15 years and has done very little. I have a plan to establish our downtown as a destination. I have a plan to increase revenue for the city without raising your taxes.” Klang served on the Rocklin Unified board of trustees from 2000 to 2004 and has been a Rocklin resident for more than 15 years. While many of the candidates agree that attracting business to the city is crucial, some say there’s a fine line. Lane, a resident of Rocklin for five years, said one of his concerns is over-development. He said he doesn’t want to see Rocklin turn into a business environment full of strip malls. Redevelopment is also one of his top priorities in older parts of Rocklin such as along Pacific Street, Lane said. Lane said he also wants more fiscal responsibility – a focus that spurred from being concerned about Rocklin’s city manager’s part-time pay. Murphy, a small businessman and Rocklin resident since 1998, said he decided to run for Rocklin City Council to represent the people. “Rocklin needs true representative government that reflects the majority of folks who live here,” he said. If elected, among his top goals are for Rocklin’s government to represent the majority of residents, for the city’s government to become more transparent and accessible to residents, and to improve fiscal responsibility. Murphy said he’s had an interest in politics most of his life. He is also the author of “The Government,” covering a variety of political actions. Ruslin announced her candidacy in June with a focus on public safety, tight spending, economic development and bringing businesses into Rocklin. “I’ve been involved in many different avenues in Rocklin,” Ruslin told The Placer Herald after her announcement. “As involved as I am, the more interest I have in being a part of the future of Rocklin. I definitely want to be a part of the future.” Ruslin serves as the president of the Parent Teacher Club at Valley View Elementary School, is a recreation commissioner for the city of Rocklin and is one of the founders of Rocklin Educational Excellence Foundation, among other services. Singh is running for city council because he said he sees a need for fresh and economicly responsible leadership within the city of Rocklin. “I think it’s time for a change; it’s time for a different perspective to take part in city decisions,” he said. “As a city council member, I want to steer Rocklin in the direction of sustainable growth that benefits the community as a whole.” Among Singh’s top priorities are government transparency so residents know where their tax dollars are going, encouraging big businesses to call Rocklin their home base and education. “We need someone on the city council that has new innovative ideas that keep Rocklin’s long-term sustainability and economic growth in mind,” he said. Yuill, the only incumbent running in the race, was elected to Rocklin City Council in November 2006 and sworn in December 2006. If re-elected, his No. 1 priority would be the city’s growth, Yuill told The Placer Herald in June when he announced he would be seeking re-election. “The No. 1 goal is to keep business and job growth top of mind in an effort to create advantages that help Rocklin fill the numerous commercial vacancies sprinkled throughout the city,” he said. “I want to help existing businesses get healthy and attract to Rocklin new businesses and employers – both retail and non-retail. I also want to have a say in Rocklin’s transition, more importantly the hiring of a new city manager and the shaping of a new economic development strategy.” Candidate Michael Rose could not be reached by press time. For more in-depth profiles on each of the candidates, check The Placer Herald within the next couple weeks.