Sunday, January 27, 2008

City Leadership

Competition is the hallmark of sustained public leadership and we look forward to strenuous competition among the talented and committed in our community to move into executive positions to address the many obvious issues requiring strong leadership.

From the long drama that is K Street, to the simple acknowledgement that Sacramento is no longer a small government town, the gulf between what Sacramento needs from its public leadership and what it has had, has often been large.

A hotly contested mayoral race is just the ticket to possibly bridge that gulf.

Editorial: An opponent would benefit city � and its mayor
Sacramento faces many challenges; what is the next mayor's vision for its future?
Published 12:00 am PST Sunday, January 27, 2008

No matter who ends up serving as the next mayor of Sacramento, there's no doubt the city would benefit from a competitive mayoral race – one that forces contenders to address the tough challenges this city faces.

The next mayor will have to confront a prolonged housing slump, declining city tax revenues and the uncompleted work of turning the K Street mall into a place that inspires pride instead of frustration.

She or he will have to push hard for levee improvements in Natomas and bond dollars to redevelop the railyard, Township 9 and other projects.

The next mayor will inherit problems that have plagued the city for years, such as street crime and homelessness. Finally, the next mayor will have to collaborate with Sacramento's neighboring jurisdictions on transportation and other regional projects, and lay the groundwork for the city's rejuvenation once the housing market eventually rebounds.

Until last week, it appeared that Mayor Heather Fargo would sail into a third term with no serious competition. March 7 is the last day for filing for the June 3 ballot, and as of Friday, no one with a chance of challenging the incumbent had thrown his or her hat into the ring.

There are, however, stirrings of competition. Those stirrings should be encouraged.