About Mayor Patterson's
I am running for re-election as Mayor to continue the work that I began in 2003 when voters first elected me to the City Council. Over the past eight years, I am proud of my accomplishments, which include:
- Completion of the Benicia Community Center for art, adult classes, and a home for the Scouts;
- Standing up to Seeno for an A+ mixed use business park;
- Protection of the historic districts downtown and in the Arsenal;
- Promotion of open government and fair, local campaigns;
- Appointment of commissioners that represent all interests in Benicia and ensuring a range of diversity.
The most important imperative facing our community today is to create sustainable, well-paying jobs. Whether its new clean-tech jobs like solar panel manufacturing and installation or incubating and growing local green industries, putting our community back in the black will be one of my top priorities.
When elected Mayor in 2007, I worked with grassroots efforts to create and pass the Benicia Arts and Cultural Commission and the Community Sustainability Commission, and ensure the funding of the Benicia Community Center (the former Mills School). By late summer of 2008 the Great Recession began and the city council began monthly sessions to ensure we maintained services and a balanced budget. While the City of Benicia has fared better than most cities in the Bay Area (and especially in Solano County), it still has lost property tax and sales tax revenues as well as other sources of revenue. The City Council strategy to save $1.2 million dollars included $600 thousand in salary and benefit cuts and $600 thousand in services and programs cuts.
Those cuts were not enough as the Great Recession has deepened. The Council directed staff in 2010-2011 to balance the budget through efficiencies, reorganization as necessary, frozen staff positions and no further cuts in services and programs. It is clear to all that we will continue as necessary to reset salaries and benefits. What we want to do is get closer to the new "normal" than we did last year. The Council and our city staff have scrambled almost daily to find creative ways to address this historic economic downturn. It has been hard work, and challenged us at every turn. Nevertheless, I believe we have met these challenges with creativity and persistent toughness.
We are at a pivotal time in our City’s history; I have the governmental and life experiences to best serve the interests of the City of Benicia residents and businesses. We have much to accomplish. I hope you will continue supporting my campaign for re-election Mayor, so together we can keep on working to make our community the best place to live. If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com.