Get to know your candidates campaigning for your vote this November


By The Atascadero News Editorial Board 

ATASCADERO — Four candidates vying for the three open seats on Atascadero’s City Council, the Atascadero News Editorial Board, came up with eight questions for the candidates to address in 150 words or less to know their stance on important topics. 

Positions on the Nov. 8 ballot are as follows:

 • One (1) Mayor for a full term of two (2) years.


 • Two (2) Members of the City Council for full terms of four (4) years.

The city council candidates in alphabetical order by last name are Susan Funk, Bret Heinemamm, and Heather Newsom. Heather Moreno, running for re-election as Atascadero mayor, has no challengers. 

The Election Board emailed a questionnaire to all of the candidates and asked them to share their campaign statements along with their stances on important issues affecting the City of Atascadero.

Each candidate had the opportunity to answer the same list of questions in 150 words or less in addition to their introduction and statement at 200 words. The candidate’s statement in its entirety is provided below, with the exception of Heather Newsom and Bret Heinemann, who did not participate. 

City Council Candidates Statement 

Susan Funk

Business owner

Council Member / Incumbent

It’s been a privilege to serve Atascadero as a Council Member since 2018. Good things have been happening in our community, despite the pandemic. La Plaza is open at last — have you been to the rooftop bar yet? I want to keep our community moving forward. 

I’m proud and grateful to be part of a City Council that listens respectfully and seeks solutions to serve the whole community. That same collaborative spirit has guided my work chairing the steering committee for the newly-approved Countywide Strategic Plan on Homelessness. Homelessness is a complex challenge that Atascadero can’t solve on its own, so I promise to keep pushing hard in that effort, working with the County, ECHO and other not-for-profits, public safety experts and many others. I want people to feel proud of our community and to be safe enjoying it. 

Atascadero needs more jobs for people who live here, and more housing affordable to young people starting their families or careers. We want our downtown to keep growing and thrive. I also want to ensure that everyone has a voice in key decisions, especially the coming update of our General Plan, which will guide our community’s development for a generation.  

Candidates Heather Newsom and Bret Heinemann did not participate.

Atascadero Mayor Candidates Statement 

Heather Moreno

Owner, Heather Moreno Wellness Services

Atascadero Mayor / Incumbent

As your Mayor, I’m committed to the health of our community and the strength of our economy. I work to foster strong public engagement to ensure your voice is heard as we make decisions about the future of Atascadero. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished together. With your support, I will continue the work of building a strong, balanced economy, securing essential public safety staffing and infrastructure, improving roads, sustaining fiscal stewardship, and strengthening the connection between you and our City.

I was appointed to the Planning Commission in 2008, serving as Chairperson in 2010. I became a City Council Member in 2012 and was elected Mayor in 2018 and 2020. I serve on the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments, Regional Transit Authority, and REACH Central Coast (formerly SLO Economic Vitality Corporation). I have also served on the Design Review Committee and as Chair of the Finance Committee.

Our thriving volunteer spirit and strong community partnerships are key to keeping our city vibrant. That’s why, like you, I’m an enthusiastic community volunteer. I’m committed to preserving the uniqueness of Atascadero, and it’s a privilege serving our great city. I’d be honored to have your vote.

Serving community. Prospering together.

No additional candidates are running for Atascadero Mayor.