What are our City Council Candidates thoughts on the budget crisis?

For the first time in a long time, we have an election with mostly outsiders running. There is one incumbent running, Paul Fadelli, who is endorsed by the El Cerrito Democratic Club, but there are 7 additional candidates. In no particular order they are:


 Tessa Rudnick

 Matt Burnham

 Jennifer Greel

 Lisa Motoyama

 Arthur Yee

 William Ktsanes

To see their nomination papers you can click here

El Cerrito Committee for responsible government sent each candidate a list of 8 questions. We want the community to be able to assess the candidate’s understanding of the fiscal crisis and what each candidate sees as potential solutions for the issues.

The questions are as follows:

  1. What is your analysis of how the city became insolvent and what changes will you make to ensure it does not happen again?
  2. How will you independently verify staff budget projections and analysis?
  3. Describe what you understand to be the working relationship between the City Manager and the City Council. Are there any changes you would like to see in the current culture, and if so, how would you go about it?
  4. How will you evaluate the city manager’s performance and hold them accountable?
  5. What role do you think short-term borrowing has in the budget?-Follow up: If there is no role: what is your plan to eliminate it. If there is a role then: what is the impact on the city’s Rating, borrowing costs, and our ability to finance other capital projects.
  6. What are the details of your plan for El Cerrito getting out of the financial situation we are in?
  7. What do you see as the issue behind the over 1 million overtime for the Fire Department each year? How would you resolve this issue and keep El Cerrito fire safe?
  8. What changes would you make with the police budget?

We have asked the candidates to respond by Monday, August 31st. Whoever does respond we will post their answers here in a blog post. We may then do some analysis in other posts but each candidate will get a post that is their words to our questions.

El Cerrito is a city in crisis. We all know the November election is one of the most important elections this country has ever had. But we cannot forget our local issues we must pay attention to both. We encourage voters to educate themselves. Sign up for updates to this blog to get each blog post for the candidates. Join our IO group for updates.

El Cerrito Progressives along with El Cerrito Fire Safe are sponsoring a candidate forum on September 12th from 3-5 pm. They will be posting the video so it can be watched later and ECP will do a scorecard for candidates.

So there are many places you can get information about these candidates please take the time to do so!

6 thoughts on “What are our City Council Candidates thoughts on the budget crisis?

  1. Thank you, ECCfRG webmaster for a very informative post. I was able to read the candidates’ statements. Because I believe that it is crucial to bring more compassionate intelligence into the city I was most impressed by Matt Burnham’s position. Please keep us posted as to the outcomes of the ECP/El Cerrito Fire Safe and ECCfRG questionnaire results.
    Be Well!.


    1. Thank you. I will post the links to the ECP page where they do their scorecard and I will post the answers to our questions as they come in. Thanks for being an informed voter. I hope you pass on the resources to your neighbors.


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