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November 8, 2016 — California General Election
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City of BeniciaCandidate for Mayor

Photo of Elizabeth Patterson

Elizabeth Patterson

Mayor/Environmental Planner
7,548 votes (50.96%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • reliable safe water supply
  • diversification of businesses in Benicia (Business) Industrial Park to be less dependent on refinery and fossil fuels
  • installing affordable high speed internet for Benicia Industrial Park by 2017



Profession:Mayor/Environmental Planner
staff environmental scientist, State of California (State Lands Commission/Department of Water Resources (1990–current)
Council and Mayor, Benicia City Council — Elected position (2003–current)
Planning Director, Town of Fairfax (1995–1998)


Pasadena City College, UCLA, CSULA, Alaska Methodist University, CSUSJ AA, BA, MA, history, geology, urban and regional planning (2001)
Pasadena City College, UCLA, CSULA, CalPoly (SLO), Alaska Methodist University, CSUSJ AA, BA, MA, History, geology, urban and regional planning (1992)

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • see website for additional endorsements

Organizations (2)

  • Solano County Central Democratic Committee
  • Sierra Club, Redwood Chapter and Solano County Orderly Growth

Elected Officials (1)

  • Congress Member Mike Thompson

Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters Benicia (3)

The Seeno property at Lake Herman and East Second street has been the subject of development plans. What if any are your concerns about a large residential development in this area?
Answer from Elizabeth Patterson:

The General Plan designates this site for light industrial and business development.  Residential development is not suitable because it would not generate the new revenues needed for city services.  Overtime the residential development property tax would not keep up with the actual cost of city services and maintenance.  School children could not walk safely to school (Robert Semple) and would be exposed to local air pollution from the freeway and refinery.  The highest and best use for some of the site business and light industrial with perhaps a hotel and mixed services for the business park (if the hills are to be protected and the six drainages within the watershed, then there is about 1/3 of the site suitable for development).  Lake Herman Road is a designated rural road and development ingress and egress would not be safe thus leading to road widening.  In addition to this traffic issue, is the traffic generated by the residential development because there would be limited (or none) transit.  And lastly residential development of 900 homes would require water and this may challenge the city's ability to get through more intense droughts. 

What ideas do you have to improve transportation and other services for our increasing Senior population? 
Answer from Elizabeth Patterson:

SolTrans is exanding its service and applying more on demand service within Benicia.  The new Route 20 provides transit from the downtown to Solano Community College, Kaiser and Sutter and Gateway.  The first and last mile are the most challenging and SolTrans is proposing an "on demand" service in partnership with Uber and Lyft and others to get people to transit to connect with the train or ferry or BART. 

In addition to the public efforts, the Carquiez Village non profit organization is a membership based group that, among many services, will include transportation for medical, shopping and recreational needs.

How do you propose that Benicia secure, implement, and maintain consistent, reliable sources of good quality water for our city?
Answer from Elizabeth Patterson:

Benicia needs to develop an integrated water management plan that considers all sources of water to diversity our water portfolio.  For instance, we are gathering information about Lake Berreyessa water that could be available for contracting.  The city sold its contract rights in the 1980s for the State Water Project contract water.  This current contract is for more water than we ever use and yet we must pay the full amount.  Additionally, the SWP can only delivery percentage of the contract water and in 2014 delivered zero (with the exception of "carryover water" the previous year.  We are gathering information about the potential for contract modification.  Other sources of water is the proposed waste water recycling project which would provide about 20% of the city's water needs.  Other sources of reliable water are greywater - from simple to complex.  The city should provide technical assistance and advocate greywater development.  Stormwater that carries pollution must be treated and will be costly to do so.  To avoid these treatment costs, the city could capture the stormwater and store in below the ground cisters (similar to other cities).  Some early efforts could capture the storm water in small open space, parks or athletic fields.  All of these ideas need to be developed in an integrated water management plan linking surface water, contract water, rain water, storm water and flood management into a comprehensive reliable water supply for the future.  Buying water from other cities is a costly affair and will become increasingly expensive as water supplies are limited due to increasing demand and droughts.

Videos (3)

— September 28, 2016 Chamber Candidates Forum



— September 28, 2016 Committee to Reelect Mayor Elizabeth Patterson

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