The votes are in and the community of Riverbank has re-elected incumbent Riverbank City Council member Cal Campbell to one of the two available council seats for a new four-year term.
With just under 39 percent of the votes from the Tuesday, Nov. 4 election, Campbell led the polling with fellow incumbent Leanne Jones Cruz coming in a close second with 36.12 percent and challenger Larry King with 23.93 percent.
While the Stanislaus County Registrar of Voters office has 28 days from the election to certify the vote and results are declared ‘unofficial’ until that certification, the returns from Tuesday showed Campbell tallying 1,180 votes in his reelection bid, followed by Cruz, with 1,082 votes. It was a three-way race for the two available spots on the council, with King polling 786 votes.
This week, The News sat down with Campbell to look ahead to his new term. Look for a feature on Cruz in the Nov. 19 issue.
“That (gaining the most votes) made me feel that I must be doing something right to get that kind of support,” said Campbell. “I had a lot of positive support during the election and that made me feel good, too.”
Campbell has been on the Riverbank City Council since June 2013 and feels that he has contributed quite a bit since he began serving. He explained that he has received several calls from people within the community with a variety of issues and, along with help from the City Manager Jill Anderson, they were able to come up with solutions to some of those problems.
There are several goals that he has made along with the council that they have been working on hard to complete.
“Hopefully in the next four years the city will become more economically stable,” stated Campbell. “There are projects that will take longer than others and some that are still in the planning stages right now.”
Within the next four years, Campbell has high hopes that the economy will be more stabilized and the things that happened during the recession will no longer be a factor. City staff had to be reduced during the recession and so Campbell hopes they can add more staff to assist with the workload.
“We are always very busy because our little town has got a lot of irons in the fire,” said Campbell. “There are talks going on with the old cannery.”
Along with talks about doing something with the old cannery site, the city council is still working toward completing the transfer of the Riverbank Industrial Complex (RIC) at the site of the former Army Ammunition Plant at Claus and Claribel roads.
“So hopefully we will make progress on a lot of the things that have been a nuisance to this town such as the cannery site, eventually finishing taking possession and making a decision on what we are going to do with the Riverbank Industrial Complex and hopefully be able to find ways to clean up the 108 corridor which will help, I think, bring more business downtown,” expressed Campbell. “The 108 corridor is a gateway into our community.
“Problems are we don’t own it, it is privately owned.”
As long as the economy is stable, Campbell believes that progress will be made on issues while keeping a close eye on things that are happening outside of Riverbank as well.
After all the hard work of running his own campaign with all the paperwork, designing flyers, hitting the streets of Riverbank talking with residents, making signs, and everything else, Campbell believes his hard work has paid off.
“Basically I am pleased I got elected for the four years and the community put their trust in me to re-elect me,” expressed Campbell. “I feel good because I am going to be a part of a council that I feel is making progress.”
Campbell said he knows the council won’t always make everyone happy, but that is to be expected when running a city.
“We are trying to do what’s best for this community when we make our decisions and I am very pleased to still be a part of that for the next four years,” Campbell said.
Governor Jerry Brown easily outdistanced challenger Neel Kashkari in the race for the state’s top office on Nov. 4, returning to the Capitol in Sacramento.
Local representatives fared well in the county as well, with Congressman Jeff Denham polling 57 percent of the Stanislaus County vote to 43 percent for Michael Eggman and earning re-election to the 10th Congressional District; while Assembly member Kristin Olsen garnered 67 percent of the Stanislaus County vote totals over challenger Harinder Grewal, with 33 percent and returns to her seat in the 12th Assembly District.