Questions & Answers With Elk Grove Mayoral Candidate Tracie Stafford

Elk Grove Mayoral candidate Tracie Stafford (left) with
supporters at a recent event. 
November 7, 2016 |

Since you have started your campaign, what are some of the things you have learned about Elk Grove and its people that you did not previously know?

I have learned that Elk Grove residents are not as divided a community as most believe. Regardless of political party, ethnic background or which side of 99 we reside, residents are hungry for change and are looking for certain qualities in our next leader. Those qualities include integrity, vision, courage, determination and passion for service.  Most importantly, residents are in search of a leader who will use the role of Mayor as a tool to serve the community.

What would you say is Elk Grove's greatest untapped resource and how should it be utilized?

Elk Grove’s greatest untapped resource is its community. I have spent the last several months speaking with residents, legislators and funders and have concluded that progress in any community starts with its residents. However, if the residents do not organize, presenting a united front on issues of importance, that power is left in the hands of city leadership. To that end, I will be launching a citizen action organization entitled Mobilize Elk Grove, to ensure that residents are kept abreast of important issues effecting the community. The organization will also act as the consolidated voice of residents to weigh in on, or bring to the forefront the desires of the community.

As the mother of four children, is there anything happening in the City of Elk Grove now, or something you might see in the future, that concerns you about their well being?

As the mother of four, I am extremely concerned about the Wilton Casino making its way to Elk Grove. We are a city without amenities for teens. Therefore, our young people will be drawn to the casino and the outlet mall. My husband and I, like most transplants, moved to Elk Grove for a better quality of life, affordable homes and quality schools. A casino does not fit into the bedroom community that we have grown to love.

In addition, the city will receive no tax revenues from the venture and the funds committed to support the ‘impact’ of the casino may not cover the need. It's important to remember that the potential impact of a casino spans far beyond the facility itself. What businesses will be drawn to an area with a casino? What jobs will be generated by the casino? Is it safe to have a highly populated casino less than half a mile away from above ground propane tanks?

Should the Wilton Casino be built, the city of Elk Grove will need strong and ethical leadership in place to preserve the quality of life and safety for its almost 170,000 residents.

Much has been said that in Elk Grove's 16 year history as a city, that there has been only one female city council member. Should voters be concerned? 

Elk Grove is the 7th most diverse city in America, yet it is not reflected in our leadership. Considering 50-percent of our population is women, it is concerning that there are no women on our city council. Why? Because we have different perspectives based on life experiences which vary greatly due to gender, ethnicity, socio economic standing etc. We will never capture the experiences of our entire community with only 5 city council positions. However, we can all agree that missing the perspective of 50-percent of the population is a problem.

If you had an out-of-state visitor coming to visit where would you take them in Elk Grove?

Our eclectic city is as diverse as  its population. I would begin by highlighting what a wonderful city Elk Grove is to raise families by viewing the lovely homes, parks, trails and I’m certain that we’d stumble upon a soccer game or two. I would then move to the Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge and Laguna Creek Parkway to view the magnificent creatures that Elk Grove has the privilege of protecting. I would conclude in Old Town with the Elk Grove House & Stage Stop Museum, boutique hopping followed by dinner and live Jazz.

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