Byrl Smith To Run for County Supervisor
November 1, 2011
On the sunny front steps of Seaside City Hall, Byrl Smith announced Tuesday her candidacy for the County Board of Supervisors. "I will return a can-do attitude to the board," she told a crowd of about 60 supporters who chanted, "We need Byrl."
Smith laid out three priority commitments of recruiting new companies to the county, ensuring a long-term water supply solution and restoring full funding to the Gang Task Force and ending violence.
Monterey Republican Central Committee Chair Paul Bruno says Smith attracts a diverse range of supporters, which he says makes her a strong candidate. Backers at Tuesday's announcement included a number of elected officials, among them Sand City Mayor David Pendergrass and council member Mary Ann Carbone; Pacific Grove Mayor Carmelita Garcia; Marina council member Nancy Amadeo; and former county supervisors Butch Lindley and Edith Johnson, who preceded Byrl Smith's late husband, Jerry Smith, in the District 4 seat. Tuesday's event opened with a moment of silence in memory of Jerry Smith, who died in 2007. Prior to serving as a county supervisor, he was a three-term mayor of Seaside.
Smith also draws support from the labor community; CEO of the Monterey/Santa Cruz Counties Building and Construction Trades Council Ron Chesshire and John Narigi, who serves on the executive committee of the Monterey County Hospitality Association, were also present Tuesday.
Narigi, also the general manager of Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa, says the majority of the county's hospitality workers reside in District 4. He says the industry's been slow to pick up since the recession hit. "It's time to get Monterey County moving again," he says, adding that water supply will be key for growing the hospitality industry.
Smith declined to comment on the specifics of her opponent, incumbent Jane Parker's, policy positions. "I don't want to get into what the board is doing and not doing," she says. "Right now I feel so positive."
Parker says she welcomes Smith as a competitor. "I am really looking forward to the campaign," she says, when it comes to getting out and talking to constituents. "It offers a way to deepen my knowledge of what voters are thinking and caring about."
That Smith already has a sizeable portion of District 4 elected officials lined up with endorsements doesn't worry Parker. "Both times I ran before, the political establishment was lined up against me and I won," she says.
"Don't complain about anything unless you're willing to do something," Smith adds.