Two of the five Manteca City Council members by the time December rolls around will have two years or less experience serving for the fourth time in 36 years.
Richard Silverman’s decision Thursday not to seek a second term in the Nov. 6 election assures that it will happen.
There are two council seats as well as the mayor’s post up for grabs in 10 months. Mike Morowit, who was elected with Silverman in 2014, has formally announced that he is seeing re-election. The only other candidate to formally announce so far is Manteca Planning Commission member Jose Nuno.
Steve DeBrum, who was first to the council in 2003 and was elected mayor in 2014, has announced he’s seeking re-election. Ben Cantu — who ran against DeBrum last time — is debating whether to run for mayor or council.
Gary Singh — who was elected in 2016 when Debby Moorhead was elected to her third four-year term — will mark his second year on the council in December.
Having two council members with two years of experience of less has been a rare occurrence in modern times although it happened four years ago with the election of Morowit and Silverman.
Last time majority of
council had 2 years or
less experience was in 1982
The last time the majority of the council had two years or less experience in office was after the 1982 recall election that saw Mayor Trena Kelly and council members Bobby Davis and Rick Wentworth replaced.
“I have been blessed, honored and privileged to serve as a councilman for the good people of Manteca,” Silverman said in a letter Thursday announcing his decision. “My goals were and are to make Manteca a better place for all, and treating every citizen and taxpayer dollar with the utmost respect. For every issue before the council, I researched the facts, listened to the opinions of all and voted what I felt was in the best interest of all 76,000 plus people that proudly call The Family City home.”
Over the past several months Silverman had been sidestepping make a decision one way or another despite being urged by a number of people to seek a second term.
Silverman said his decision to not to run was based on several factors.
“Campaigning is hard work and a major commitment,” he said. “I have a few minor health issues, normal for a man of my age, that are under control but nagging. Speaking of age, that entered into my decision also – I will be turning 73 this year. My wife Linda and I enjoy the freedom of retirement, we love our trips and vacations and spending time with family. Manteca has a bright future ahead and it is always in need of fresh ideas and the vigor of youth.”
work left to be done
Among the goals he set form himself when he was elected that have been met include:
uManteca being very close to securing a “game changing major destination resort.
uThe full staffing of the city’s fourth fire station on Lathrop Road west of Union Road with no brown outs.
uThe Manteca Fire rescue unit is staffed with its own assigned personnel almost daily.
uA “much needed” fire rig to combat brush fires will be delivered and put into service in the coming months.
uThe deployment of community resource officers through the Manteca Police Department is making significant headway dealing with homeless issues and is now being copied by other cities across the state.
uManteca has a balanced budget, a fully-funded rainy day fund, zero general fund indebtedness and all of police officer positions are now funded either by the general fund or Measure M monies with one-time endowment funds no longer needed.
“I am also quite happy that we have a great dog park, a great full-service Park and Recreation Department and good, dedicated employees in every department,” Silverman said. “We are a recognized leader in dealing with solid waste, we run a very efficient and conservation minded municipal water operation. Our municipal golf course is a gem and the new golf pro is well on his way to making the course even better, for the golfing community and the taxpayers. We are well on our way to growing our tax base with industrial and commercial development, moving beyond residential housing as the only major tax contributor.”
Among goals that Silverman said have been elusive and that the city needs to continue working toward include:
uMoving the fifth fire station planned for Atherton Drive and Woodward Avenue toward construction and staffing to bring more than 1,800 homes into the targeted five minute response time for fires and medical emergencies.
uStaffing more police officer positions, especially in patrol and the traffic unit, so the city is at or exceeding the ratio of 1 officer per 1,000 citizens.
uCity fire engines are showing their age and wear, and replacements are needed.
uDowntown alleys have been in need of rebuilding for “way too long” while he added the city is “slowly, very slowly, catching up on much needed street repair and maintenance.”
“Again, it has been an honor to have been chosen to serve and we will continue to be active cheerleaders for The Family City,” Silverman said of himself and his wife.
Silverman is a member of the Sunrise Kiwanis and a volunteer with Manteca Fiore Department’s Seniors Aiding Fire Effort.
The Silvermans have been married for over 38 years. They have three children: Denise, Matthew and Debbie and have three grandchildren.