The Temple City Chamber of Commerce is hosting an open, community-wide forum on Monday, February 9, 2009.
The forum, held in Room 601 at Temple City High School, will be moderated by the non-partisan League of Women Voters. The city council candidates, after briefly introducing themselves, will respond to questions posed by Temple City residents.
“[The forum] is a great way for community residents to get to meet and hear what the council candidates are all about,” Chamber of Commerce President Linda Payne said, “Otherwise all you see of these candidates are signs on yards; you don’t even really get to know the person. This way, though, you can hear what these people are about right from the person’s mouth.”
There are six candidates running for two positions on the City Council. They are current councilmembers Cathé Wilson and Ken Gillanders, former councilman Chuck Souder, Planning Commissioner Vincent Yu, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Tom Chavez, and Silenus Ong.
Payne stressed the importance of community involvement and the advantages of attending the forum.
However, she understood that a language barrier for some potential voters may hinder their attendance by not completely understanding what the candidates have to say.
“We have a lot of people in Temple City who may have communication problems due to a language barrier,” Payne explained, “and we would love it if students at the high school could come to the forum and possibly help translate for their parents. If not with their parents, they could instead go by themselves and tell them a summary later on. She later added, “That would be great because a lot of residents can vote, but have a hard time understanding what people are telling them when they don’t understand the language.”
In addition to the Chamber sponsored forum, the Temple City Voice and the Temple City High School Junior State of America (JSA) will host their own candidates’ forum on Saturday, January 31, 2009 in the Civic Community Center at City Hall. The event will last from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The Chamber of Commerce sponsored forum will take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The City Council election is scheduled for March 3, 2009.
Along with the events surrounding the community forum, the Chamber of Commerce has other pressing city matters at hand.
“One priority we have right now is stabilizing businesses that are in town,” Payne added. “We’re trying to find viable, sales-tax producing businesses to come to Temple City, since sales tax is what a city runs on.”
Payne also envisioned a “greener” community for Temple City.
“We’re looking into going green- helping businesses go green,” Payne said. “We’d like to start out with the Edison Company, maybe start a program with them and do electrical audits.”
This article was written by Katie Brown. It was published in the January 23, 2009 issue of the Temple City Voice.