1. Name, age, occupation & number of years in Monterey County?
2. How much do you plan to raise & spend?
3. Should the sheriff's department shut down medical marijuana clinics sanctioned by Prop. 215? How much of department resources should go to curtail marijuana cultivation?
4. Is there a morale problem in the sheriff's department? If so, what would you do to remedy it?
5. Who are your contributors? Is there anyone whose contribution you would not accept?
6. Is the department adequately staffed & funded?
7. How should the problem of jail over-crowding & staffing be handled?
8. Why are you the best candidate for this position?
Norman G. Hicks
1. 56, Sheriff/Coroner/ Public Administrator
3. Yes because they do not meet the definition as set out in Prop. 215. The same amount the department has used over the last 15 years.
4. There is no morale problem at this time. I have worked hard to improve lines of communication & work with all members of the department to improve morale. The test is what kind of job we do in the community & we do a great job.
5. I will accept donations from the same contributors that all other political candidates accept.
6. At the present time we are fully staffed at the deputy level & down 11 non-sworn. We have adequate funds to do the job we are asked to do thanks to the support we receive from the community.
7. The only way to handle the over-crowding is to build additional housing space. The present staffing needs to be increased because of the type & numbers of inmates. Because our staff is trained so well we are able to do more with less.
8. Have taken the sheriff's department from a negative department to one that's respected, directed it towards better involvement with the community & attacked youth, gang problems. Endorsed by DSA, Salinas PD, Monterey County Peace Officers Assoc., others.
Gordon Albert Sonn
1. 53, Sheriff's Detective, 28 years in county
2. As much as possible, as long as it's all clean money
3. Prop. 215 was passed by the voters & should be upheld as long as it operates within the guidelines & the law. Morphine is given to cancer patients but all must be state regulated. Same difference.
4. Yes there is. A recent morale survey (department wide) proved that. When elected sheriff, I will meet with the entire department & assure them politics are over & everyone starts with an "A." It will be everyone's job (including mine) to maintain that "A."
5. Family, friends & supporters who realize what I'm trying to do for the department & the public, not for myself. I will not accept any money from known or suspected law violators. Particularly money from narcotics traffickers. I'd rather lose than compromise my standards & integrity.
6. We are not adequately staffed, as was evident by the recent POST survey. Patrol & Corrections were dangerously understaffed. "Think officer safety." I believe funding is almost adequate, but the money is not spent wisely.
7. If criminals are removed from society, then the jails & prisons will be full. To address understaffing, I will work more closely with the county board of supervisors to hire new personnel to work in the jail. I do not advocate early release programs.
8. My experience, honesty & integrity will prove to be the driving force which will heal our department from within. Leadership, not dictatorship, is what men & women are looking for. I will, along with a new management team, set examples for others to follow.