Kristina Hernandez, Staff Writer
Posted: 07/31/2012 01:59:19 PM PDT
REDLANDS – Mayor Pete Aguilar announced Tuesday that he will seek re-election to retain a seat on the City Council in November.
The announcement comes two weeks after the nomination period for the fall election opened on July 16.
Aguilar was appointed to the council in 2006 to fill a vacancy, becoming the second youngest member on the council in the city’s history at the age of 26.
In 2007, he successfully ran to keep his seat.
He was appointed mayor in 2010.
Residents, especially some who are basing their council candidacy decisions on whether Aguilar will run, have been waiting for his decision.
His losing bid for Congress in June left him available to seek re-election locally.
Since the loss, Aguilar has been in talks with his family on what would be best for his growing brood and the city, he said.
Born and raised in San Bernardino, Aguilar and his wife, Alisha, have lived in Redlands since 1997 and are raising two sons, Palmer and Evan.
“I think everybody around me knows how much I enjoy representing the city, and so they’re all incredibly supportive,” Aguilar said. “We are 100 percent committed to this…, (and) we’re all in as a family.”
Going into this re-election effort, Aguilar said his immediate focus is building a coalition of supporters that would help him be successful in this next term.
He is also looking forward to the possibility of continuing his work on the council, which includes working to maintain a balanced budget, and investing in infrastructure and youth programs and services.
Aguilar said youths are one of the city’s largest segment, and often they are not represented in council policy.
He said that it was an important question to address, adding, “As I stated in the State of the City…, those are (three) key areas that I want to focus on and I feel the council can make significant progress.”
Since appointed to the council, Aguilar has been vocal about being able to address residents informally outside of council chambers.
He implemented a monthly Coffee with the Council event that has seen a steady turnout of Redlanders who want to have a dialogue on city issues.
He said that if he is not re-elected he hopes the next council continues the engagement.
“But, I’m focused on making sure I’m (re-elected). That’s my primary objective today,” Aguilar said.
Councilman Jon Harrison said Tuesday that he was pleased with Aguilar’s decision to run for re-election, adding, “I think he’s done a great job, and in particular, shown a real knack for leadership as mayor.
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