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Tuesday June 7, 2016 — California Primary Election
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San Mateo CountyCandidate for Supervisor, Supervisorial District 5

Photo of Cliff Lentz

Cliff Lentz

Mayor of Brisbane
4,304 votes (17.3%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Engage local police departments to develop neighborhood safety programs, including fraud protection for seniors and proactive outreach to at-risk youth.
  • Help cities find ways to create truly affordable housing and transition to a higher living wage so that working people do not have to live in poverty.
  • Create a comprehensive Senior Plan to help seniors live independently as long as possible.



Profession:Mayor of Brisbane, Small Business Owner
Owner, Silverspot Graphics (2012–current)
Mayor of Brisbane, Brisbane City Council — Elected position (2015–current)
City Council Member, 2nd term, City of Brisbane — Elected position (2013–current)
City Council Member, 1st term, City of Brisbane — Elected position (2010–2013)
Mayor of Brisbane, Brisbane City Council — Appointed position (2011–2012)


San Francisco State B.A., B.A. in Communications (1986)


Quick facts:

  • Mayor of the City of Brisbane
  • Chair of the SFO Roundtable
  • Owner of Silverspot Graphics
  • Lifelong resident of South San Francisco and Brisbane
  • Proud graduate of local public schools

I have lived in the area all my life, growing up in a working class family in South San Francisco, going through the public school system, and eventually putting down roots in Brisbane.  

At a young age, I learned the importance of hard work, resourcefulness and independence.  I had my first real job at the age of 15 and joined a union at 17.  As a high school and NCAA wrestler, I was immersed in the values of teamwork, dedication, and perseverance.  The ethics of my youth are deeply imbedded; they have informed the way I manage our business, partner with my wife to raise our children, engage in my city and county.  

Karen and I have been happily married for 20 years.  Our daughters, 15 and 18, have played soccer with Brisbane AYSO, participated in many library events, and for many years trained with the Brisbane Dance Workshop.  Karen is currently a Trustee of the Brisbane Elementary School District, President of the Brisbane Dance Workshop, and a Parks and Recreation Commissioner. Together we own a small promotional products business. 

Through years of volunteering and public service, my life has been enhanced by community engagement, especially when it has improved the lives of youth and those less fortunate. 

I believe creativity and community partnership, coupled with a strong business sense, will enhance County Services and deliver them in a more efficient and effective way.  I have no problem taking on powerful interest groups, and standing up for what I think is right.  I’m also a good listener, and value the art of compromise.

As Mayor of Brisbane I’ve had the opportunity to take the public’s aspirations and concerns into account and apply their feedback to the policies that have helped shape the City.  My approach is to empower the people and lead by example. 

During my terms as Council Member, Vice Mayor and Mayor, I have taken on a number of county leadership roles.  I am the Chair of the SFO Roundtable, which addresses airport noise.  I am working with a task force to update the strategic plan for to reduce traffic congestion in the County.  Through the task force with HEART  (The Housing Endowment and Regional Trust), we are addressing the need for affordable housing.  And in the area of high speed rail, I have advised Caltrain on the electrification process.

The Board of Supervisors is just one piece in our Community puzzle - but their role has a major impact on our quality of life.  As a County Supervisor, I would be dedicated to making certain that County services reach the people who qualify for those services, strengthen partnerships between government, non-profits and businesses, and listen to the people who reside in our County.


Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Supervisor Dave Pine, San Mateo County Board of Supervisors
  • The Sierra Club
  • California State Assembly Member Rich Gordon

Organizations (1)

  • San Mateo County Plumbers, Pipefitters & Refrigeration Fitters Union Local 467

Elected Officials (37)

  • Mayor Jim Ruane, City of San Bruno
  • April Vargas, Environmental Activist and Community Organizer
  • Trustee Hector Camacho, San Mateo County Board of Education
  • Trustee Richard Holober, San Mateo County Community College Board
  • Trustee Patrick Lucy, South San Francisco Unified School District
  • Trustee Rosa Acosta, South San Francisco Unified School District
  • Trustee Judy Bush, South San Francisco Unified School District
  • Trustee Daina R. Lujan, South San Francisco Unified School District
  • Trustee Patrick Flynn, San Bruno Park School District
  • Trustee Andy Lie, Jefferson Union High School District
  • Board President Leo Tingin, Brisbane Elementary School District
  • Trustee Roxana Hui, Brisbane Elementary School District
  • Trustee Bob Dettmer, Brisbane Elementary School District
  • Trustee Karen Lentz, Brisbane Elementary School District
  • Council Member Ken Ibarra, City of San Bruno
  • Council Member Pradeep Gupta, City of South San Francisco
  • Council Member Liza Normandy, City of South San Francisco
  • Council Member Madison Davis, City of Brisbane
  • Vice-Mayor Lori Liu, City of Brisbane
  • Council Member Clarke Conway, City of Brisbane
  • Mayor Eric Reed, City of Belmont
  • Council Member Doug Kim, City of Belmont
  • Council Member Mike O'Neill, City of Pacifica
  • Council Member John Kenner, City of Pacifica
  • Council Member Reuben Holober, City of Millbrae
  • Former Council Member Steve Okamoto, City of Foster City
  • Council Member Herb Perez, City of Foster City
  • Mayor Rick Kowalczyk, City of Half Moon Bay
  • Council Member Debbie Ruddock, City of Half Moon Bay
  • Former Trustee Marta Bookbinder, Jefferson School District
  • Harbor Commissioner Tom Mattusch, San Mateo County
  • Vice Mayor Charles Stone, City of Belmont
  • Former Council Member John Root, City of Burlingame
  • Former Council Member Cathy Wright, City of Belmont
  • Former Trustee Katherine Zarate Dulany, Jefferson Union High School District
  • Harbor Commissioner Robert Bernardo, San Mateo County
  • Former Trustee Ken Walker, Brisbane Elementary School District

Individuals (7)

  • Superintendent Anne Campbell, County Superintendent of Schools, San Mateo County Office of Education
  • Jennifer Bousquet, Live at Mission Blue Marketing Director, Social Media Consultant, Co-Founder Mothers of Brisbane
  • Kevin Fryer, Artistic Director of Live at Mission Blue, Master Harpsichord Maker
  • Larry Purcell, past Brisbane Chamber of Commerce President
  • Ron Davis, Owner, Ron Davis & Company Real Estate
  • Joe Buttram, Media Consultant
  • Nancy Lacsamana, Community Volunteer

Questions & Answers

Questions from The League of Women Voters of California Education Fund and California Counts, a public media collaboration. (2)

What is your plan for addressing San Mateo County’s affordable housing crisis? Given the intense economic pressures on the area, is there anything that government leaders CAN do to effectively keep San Mateo County affordable for middle and low income people?
Answer from Cliff Lentz:

The average rental cost for a one bedroom apartment in Northern San Mateo County is $2,000, while the average price for a single family home is $800,000. With these skyrocketing costs, it is becoming more and more difficult for people to live where they work. 

Question:  What can the County do to address the affordability of housing in our communities?  

1.  Housing Bond
The San Mateo County Department of Housing has a multi-city jobs/housing taskforce dedicated to alleviating the housing crisis.  We have discussed passing a housing bond that would raise hundreds of millions of dollars to build housing for seniors and low- and middle-income workers. As Supervisor, I would strongly support this effort to build the affordable homes that are needed. I would partner with our cities to find the locations that make sense for new housing, while maintaining the special character of our neighborhoods.

2.  Home Sharing
There are many seniors who live alone who would benefit from companionship, help with chores, or some extra income.  As Supervisor, I would strongly promote non-profit HIP Housing’s proven program of partnering seniors with reliable tenants. 

3.  Responsible Rents 
San Mateo County needs to take a responsible approach to dealing with rising rents.  San Francisco has rent control, while cities in Northern San Mateo County do not.  Although I do not support San Francisco’s version of rent control, I do believe we need to create guidelines that provide assurances for tenants, so that they do not have to live in fear of losing their housing because of unreasonable rent increases.  As your Supervisor, I will be dedicated to bringing all stakeholders to the table to find a balance that is fair and equitable for tenants and landlords of multi-unit buildings.

I hope to earn your support so that I can tackle the pressing housing issues that face our communities.

What transportation plans do you have to address the worsening traffic problem in San Mateo County?
Answer from Cliff Lentz:

The Bay Area has some of the worst traffic in the nation.  To help reduce traffic in San Mateo County, here as some areas that I would focus on as a Supervisor.

1. Electrify Caltrain

By electrifying Caltrain, we will not only reduce carbon emissions, but increase performance.  The electric trains can stop and start faster than the diesel trains and have greater pulling power - these two attributes will increase capacity for the system, which is deperately needed.  

2. Expanding Shuttles

The shuttles provided by have taken thousands of cars of the roads.  Their model of partnering with businesses and cities to efficiently help workers travel the "last mile" from Caltrain and BART stations is something I would like to expand as a Supervisor.  

3. Create Better Outreach for Ride Sharing

I would like to see the County partner with companies like Uber and Lyft to promote greate car sharing.  The technology is there - we just have to incorporate it into a top priority of our public transportation system.  There are too many single driver cars on our freeways.

4. Improve Accessibility of Samtrans

I want to work with our communities to create the bus routes that benefit all people, not just the ones for commuting to and from work.  For public transportation to reach a wider audience, it has to be easy to use.  I also want to investigate ways to reduce the fares for youth, seniors and people working low-income jobs.


Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

Issues such as fiscal responsibility, economic development, housing, public safety, education, social safety net programs and the environment are priorities in every community.  I’ve been fully committed to addressing these issues, and applying proactive leadership in making these areas of government more accessible and accountable to the people.

A County Supervisor should engage the public, understand and solve complex issues, and have a sincere passion for making life better for all citizens of the County.  I have applied my tenacity and strong work ethic to become an All-American wrestler, a successful small business owner, a respected leader in my Community, and a role model for my children.  I would apply this energy in being a productive Supervisor.  

District 5 should be a place that:

  • Makes us feel safe
  • Connects us to services and our fellow citizens
  • Provides an enriching environment for our kids
  • Values traditions and where seniors are engaged
  • Empowers us to be our best


I believe good things happen when citizens feel they have a vested stake in what goes on in their Communities.  In order for Northern San Mateo County to continue to thrive, we will need to incorporate the knowledge and experience of our long-term residents with the energy and aspirations of our newer inhabitants.  In an effort to refresh our Communities, I will continue to seek ways to empower our citizens, work with our businesses and non-profits, and collaborate with our elected officials in Sacramento and Washington DC, so that we maintain and enhance what we collectively support. 

Candidate Contact Info

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