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I’m angry
quill pen

For the past eight years I have attempted to serve as a calm, thoughtful and respectful presence on the Turlock City Council. I have voted on issues that have not always had majority results, but, have represented the interests of our City to the best of my ability. Over the past several days, perhaps several weeks or months, I have witnessed systematic and organized attacks from many fronts, not just on policies, but on the character of Turlock’s Mayor Gary Soiseth. These attacks are vicious, mean-spirited, and inappropriate and I must speak out to call it for what it is—a character assassination!

I have not always agreed with the Mayor's initiatives and he is aware of those issues. For the sake of perspective, I voted for the Mayor's challenger in 2014, an individual of considerable experience and impeccable character. The Mayor and I disagreed on the Farmer's Market decision (which, by the way, Councilmember Bublak supported with her vote) and the Chamber of Commerce/CVB decision (which, by the way, Councilmember Bublak supported as well); I voted against both of these issues, as the record will show.

This campaign season has devolved into attacks on the character and style of a young Mayor who has given all that he has, while committing his city stipend to the benefit of 10,000-plus students at our splendid University to fund experiences working to better our community.  Mayor Soiseth has successfully fought for our growing community to obtain much needed funds and support from our State and Federal governments to both repair and improve our infrastructure, obtain an additional source of water and improve the quality of life for our fair City.

The population of Turlock has doubled, nearly tripled, since the days of one mayoral candidate who most vocally advances criticism and offers solutions that he first presented nearly forty years ago...poppycock! Another feigns "guardian of the public treasury" based on a series of recent no votes but I remind you that you do not hold a monopoly when it comes to carefully considering the impact of expenditures on the tax implications and future funding needs of our City! It's a very delicate dance that requires the best attention and focus of all participants to the process.

Dissent or opposing views are necessary to the decision making process, however, they cannot become a "way of life" for every issue...simply because! This nonsense must! I cannot stand by and watch the personal assassination continue without speaking out against the actions of "adults,” those with chronological experience who should know better! I am sickened by the vitriol levied against one who has done so much! I say to those in this vile attack mode: grow up! To critique and offer solutions is one thing and preferred! To criticize and put down and attempt to destroy is unacceptable and childish.

Obstructionist no votes and four decades old solutions will not get the job done—not today, not tomorrow, not ever! Let's join our best efforts together to move forward with the necessary cooperation to make Turlock what it can and should be: the jewel of the Central Valley! My support and my vote are for Mayor Gary Soiseth for four more years!

— Bill DeHart, Turlock City Council member