The City Council Race For Dummies

Left to Right: Lewis, Royce, Klein, Grassilli, Grocott

Name a current member of the San Carlos City Council.  Can’t? You’re not alone.

Over the last week, the Laurel Street Spy has taken a random survey of residents. Not a big sample (about 25 people) and certainly nothing scientific. The findings: Only a few could name a City Council member.

“Which of the yard signs belongs to the incumbent?” I asked, referring to the upcoming November election.

No clue.

“Who’s the mayor?” I asked.

Several people identified Andy Klein, although not by name, referring to him instead as, “the young guy” or the, “guy who took over the mayor who died.”

The Laurel Street Spy then asked ten older (40 and over) residents who’ve expressed an interest in local politics and discovered not even these folks could name a City Council member.

“The citizens of San Carlos are not unusual, many people don’t know who their city council members are,” said Terry Christensen, a professor at San Jose State University who specializes in state and local politics, adding that voters learn more during election season.

This is why yard signs are so important in local races. Before the LSS explores that topic in tomorrow’s post, a review session is in order.

CURRENT City Council Members are:

Andy Klein, Mayor (aka the “young guy”)

Randy Royce (up for re-election; blue and white signs)

Brad Lewis (the animated movie director; interim seat up in Nov.)

Bob Grassilli (has a silver beard)

Matt Grocott (the member who quipped he likes plastic bags b/c they’re handy for scooping dog poop)

RUNNING for City Council:

Randy Royce (one more time, the incumbent)

Mark Olbert (long-time elementary school board trustee)

Ron Collins (local businessman with silver hair and long roots in SC)



Filed Under: Column 1San Carlos Politics


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  1. Glenn G says:

    At the recent candidates forum hosted by the chamber of commerce I posited the question of where do you stand on Agenda 21 and the city’s membership in ICLEI. Ron Collins professed to know little about it and proceeded to give a completly false discription of what they were,Mark Olbert said he knew little of it and professed to know nothing about it however I know he was given information about it two weeks prior to the forum, Randy Royce who voted for the city’s ICLEI membership also mischaracterized what ICLEI is. Now I can’t help but think that if you vote for something you should at least know what you are voting for,
    If you don’t know something say so don’t show your ignorance by giving an answer that’s not even close to representing what something is. Last but not least do not tell untruths, if you are aware of something don’t tell the public your not. We can do better for our City Council Members.

    • debramonroe says:

      Hi Glenn, Can you explain your understanding of Agenda 21? Do you believe there is a conspiracy theory and that the City of San Carlos is somehow involved?

    • Francis W says:

      Hi Glenn, I share your concern about this issue. It sounds like everyone is stonewalling – why would they be afraid to talk about it? Just wondering if they don’t want to be associated with it…

      I certainly won’t be voting RR based on this.

      My thought is that city council members should be asked direct questions on what types of things they support – high density housing, new green regulations, etc.

      Too bad others aren’t aware of the issue, or seem obtuse about it.

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