Council Forum Face-Off

Stephanie Condon Special to the Dispatch

Gilroy – The five City Council candidates will sit down to discuss their positions on various issues at The Dispatch’s televised public forum Thursday at

7pm. Community Media Access Partnership is hosting the live forum at its station at Gavilan College.

Candidates will take questions from a small audience and from residents who call in during the program. CMAP reaches about 6,000 to 7,000 homes in Gilroy, said Suzanne St. John-Crane, CMAP’s executive director.

“It gives folks that can’t get to a forum because of time or location an opportunity to see where the candidates stand,” she said. “And gives them an opportunity to ask the candidates questions without leaving their homes.”

During the forum, candidates will be asked specific questions. After a candidate answers, one other candidate will be given the opportunity to comment or respond. Also, all the candidates will be asked to answer one similar question posed by the Gilroy Dispatch Editorial Board.

“The more informed the public has, the more they’ll vote on issues,” said councilman Charlie Morales. “I believe they’ll benefit [from the forum] because not only will it put a face on the issue, but you’ll get an answer to the issue as well.”

Morales said some of the issues that he anticipates discussing are the development of downtown and public safety.

There should be room for about 20 people in the audience, St. John-Crane said, and seating will be first-come, first-served. The forum will last an hour and a half, with the last half hour reserved for audience questions.

St. John-Crane encourages everyone who is interested to call in to talk to the candidates.

“That’s what really makes it interesting,” she said. “It’s like having a one-on-one meeting with them.”

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