Voter's Edge California Voter Guide
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November 3, 2020 — California General Election
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Local

City of Lemon GroveCandidate for City Council

Photo of George Gastil

George Gastil

Community College Teacher/Agency Board Chair
4,507 votes (26.8%)Winning
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Budget--we must focus on funding vital city services, such as public safety, street maintenance, maintaining our parks, and improving recreation opportunities.
  • Economic Development--we must make it a top priority to attract and support businesses, and revitalize key business areas.
  • Community Health--we must work closely with county and regional government to maintain health standards, and help unsheltered individuals find the services they need.

Experience

Experience

Profession:Community College Teacher/ Agency Board Chair
Instructor, Grossmont College (2000–current)
Lecturer, San Diego State University (2015–current)
Council Member, City of Lemon Grove — Elected position (2008–2016)
Board Member, Lemon Grove School District — Elected position (1998–2008)

Education

San Diego State University Teaching Credential (Single Subject), Social Studies (1993)
UC Santa Barbara MA, History (1991)
Earlham College BA, History (1985)

Community Activities

Board Member (currently Board Chair), Facilitating Access to Coordinated Transportation (FACT) (2013–current)
Activist/Helper, Lemon Grove Community Garden (2017–2019)

Who supports this candidate?

Featured Endorsements

  • Lemon Grove Firefighters Local 2728

Organizations (1)

  • Sierra Club San Diego

Elected Officials (3)

  • City Council Member Jennifer Mendoza
  • City Council Member Yadira Altamirano
  • State Assemblymember Shirley Weber

Individuals (2)

  • Former Mayor Mary Teresa Sessom
  • Lemon Grove Planning Commissioner Seth Smith

Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters of California and Elect Justice CA (2)

Does your office have any plans to include currently or formerly incarcerated people in your decision-making process as it relates to criminal justice issues? What would that look like?
Answer from George Gastil:

I have been a strong advocate of focus groups, where we have recruited a small and dedicated group of residents to study issues in our community and make recommendations. I strongly support including a wide range of people on such bodies, including formerly incarcerated individuals.

With 8,000 people eligible for release from CA prisons to help stem the transmission of COVID-19, how, if at all, would your office aid these Californians and their families in navigating reentry?
Answer from George Gastil:

We need to work closely with the County of San Diego and with our County Supervisor on this issue.  They really need to take the lead, and the cities are in a supporting role.

Questions from League of Women Voters San Diego (3)

What action (personal or professional) that you have taken most exemplifies how you would execute the duties of the office you are running for?
Answer from George Gastil:
As a City Council member I worked closely with my colleagues to develop budgets that funded vital public services.  We minimized the impact of budget cuts in hard times.  During better times, we focused on paying off pension debt and rebuilding our reserve.
What are the three biggest challenges facing this region in the decade of the 2020s, and how would you use this office to help our community prepare for (and meet) those challenges?
Answer from George Gastil:

Regional planning--we must work on improving transit and also on bringing more high paying jobs to East County. I can offer some insights from my earlier experience serving on MTS and on the East County Economic Development Council.

Environmental protection--we must strengthen our climate action plan at the county level and fund environmental restoration projects.

Homelessness--we must connect unsheltered individuals and families with services that can make a long range difference.  

How do your plans to address the many causes and impacts of homelessness balance the rights and needs of all?
Answer from George Gastil:

The most important thing is to communicate with people and help them access the services that will be most helpful.  We also should build or find more housing that is specifically devoted to serving people who do not have homes. 

Candidate Contact Info

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