Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 08/13/2010 11:50:26 AM PDT

RIALTO – In a city of 100,000 residents, not one has stepped forward to run against the two incumbents seeking re-election on Nov. 2.

Councilwoman Deborah Robertson and Councilman Joe Baca Jr. are the only two candidates to qualify through the City Clerk’s office.

Robertson was appointed to office here in 2000. She won re-election bids in 2002 and 2006.

She has taken a strong stance against hefty pensions for public employees and for holding polluters responsible to pay for the cleanup of perchlorate contamination in the city’s groundwater.

She lost a 2008 campaign for mayor against Grace Vargas, who had the support of the police and fire unions.

Robertson, just three years earlier, was part of a 4-1 council vote, with Vargas dissenting, to eliminate the Police Department and contract with the sheriff’s department, a move that was later overturned.

Robertson has been a supporter of transit-oriented development and has pushed for a balance of commercial and industrial development along the 210 Freeway.

She did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment.

Voters first elected Baca in 2006.

Baca said Thursday he is proud of his focus during his first term on improving the city’s image through rehabilitating some of its parks and facilities.

He also believes he has been a part of a City Council that has “done a good job” of managing the budget and preserving reserves as cities throughout the region continue to languish in the economic downturn.

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