Our Opinion: Carrillo in District 1

February 28, 2002

Sometimes it is time to move on to a new era.

Imperial County needs to move on to an era in which its leaders are articulate, well-educated people, people who can represent us elsewhere as professionals as we try to crawl out of California's economic basement.

That is a big part of the reason we support the election of Victor Carrillo as county supervisor for District 1. Along with being well-spoken and well-educated, Carrillo has done a fine job on the Calexico City Council as the city has grown and added amenities many other Imperial County cities don't have.

The Calexico council during Carrillo's tenure has gotten things done and lived up to its promises — a rare thing indeed in politics — and much of that has to do with Carrillo's leadership. Carrillo at times comes across as not wanting to be crossed, and that can be both a positive and a negative trait, but it ultimately is positive when the person is determined to do good things for a community.


In our support for Carrillo we have one caveat. If elected, we would like to see him give up his teaching job at Calexico High School. He says he managed to teach and coach and do other things while a Calexico councilman and still do a good job, but a county supervisor's position is a full-time job and is paid as such.

Carrillo says he hopes to keep the teaching job, if at all possible, because he wants to keep in contact with the young people at the school. While that is admirable, he would be better off substitute teaching or coaching and devoting the majority of his time to county issues.

Even with that concern, we still think Carrillo is the superior candidate to incumbent Tony Tirado. Tirado, a seasoned veteran of Calexico politics, is a formidable political force, but we think time may have passed him by in regard to his effectiveness. As the county grows and changes, the Tony Tirados of Imperial County, the old-time political pros, become anachronisms.

Our other concern is we can't cite a lot of areas where the county has made strides during Tirado's first four-year term on the board. And some of the messes he faced when he was elected to the board still need cleaning. We do praise him for his stance against the polluting power plants being built in Mexicali, although he seemed to take that position after it was too late to really do much about the situation.

With Victor Carrillo as a county supervisor, more things will get done on time and in a professional manner. That is why we endorse the election of Carrillo as District 1 supervisor.

>>Friday: endorsement for Board of Supervisors District 5

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