ATASCADERO – As we head into the 2020 election cycle, understanding our local government is essential. This year Atascadero voters will choose a mayor as the two-year term of current Mayor Heather Moreno is set to expire. The four-year at-large seats of present Council-members Charles Bourbeau and Roberta Fonzi will also be on the ballot.

The City released the following on July 15, as an overview of how our local officials help guide and lead the management and direction of our community.

The City Council is composed of five members, a Mayor and four Council Members, elected at large by the citizens of Atascadero. The Mayor serves a two-year term, and Council Members serve four-year overlapping terms. The Mayor presides over the meetings and performs other ceremonial duties. As the policy-making legislative body, the City Council is responsible for enacting all programs, policies, and services of the City.

The City Council acts upon all legislative matters concerning the City, approving and adopting all ordinances, resolutions, contracts, and other matters requiring overall policy decisions and leadership. The Council appoints the City Manager, City Attorney, and various other commissions, boards, and citizen advisory committees, all of which ensure broad-based input into the City’s affairs.

In 1998, the Council initiated a unique strategic planning effort to annually determine critical issues and set overall goals for the City; these strategic planning sessions continue to be held near the beginning of each year. 

Each City department also prepares a strategic plan to interface with the priorities established by the Council. The City’s annual operating budget becomes the guide and the means for implementing those strategies.

City Council Members are elected officers identified in Government Code Section 87200 and file statements of economic interests with the City Clerk’s office. Copies of statements of economic interests filed by the City’s elected officials may be obtained by visiting the offices of the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) or the City Clerk. 

The address of the FPPC is 1102 Q St #3000, Sacramento, CA 95811. The address of the City Clerk’s office is 6500 Palma Ave, Atascadero, CA 93422. Statements of economic interests for some state and local government agency elected officers may be available in electronic format on the FPPC’s website at fppc.ca.gov.

The initial period for filing Nomination Papers is July 13 – August 7, 2020. However, if a seated incumbent does not file nomination papers for their respective position, the filing period to submit nomination papers for that office will be extended to August 12, 2020.  Candidate information and essential election dates can be found online at slocounty.ca.gov.

The Atascadero News will be publishing information on candidates who officially file and invite candidates for question-and-answer sessions as the election draws closer.

Getting through this together, Atascadero