San Diego City Council President Georgette Gomez Talks Impact And Legacy In District 9
Gomez Is Now Running For Congress
From environmental advocate to San Diego City Council President. Now Georgette Gomez is running for the 53rd Congressional District, currently occupied by Representative Susan Davis.
What will her departure from the council mean for District 9, which includes City Heights where some residents say their community is often overlooked? KPBS Speak City Heights Reporter Ebone Monet sat down with Gomez to discuss her impact, legacy and future.
Q: How did you decide to run for U.S. Congress, was it always the plan?
A: No, it wasn't part of the plan. To me, politics was never part of the plan. It's about for me the plan is addressing injustices in our society is changing systems that are that impact people's quality of life that is part of the plan for me. How I do that is in different ways.
Q: What have you learned about getting things done and has your mind softened a bit to the idea of the special interests?
A: Oh, yes. I've learned a lot. Coming in I had a perspective that really has shifted completely … now I have a much better understanding of what the council does versus what the mayor does. The council is there to set up policies the mayor is there to implement the policies that the councils adopting. Mind you I did feel that we were not introducing a lot of policies, so now as the council president, I am intentionally trying to introduce policies.
Q: Do you believe that you have started a momentum that will continue with or without you in this leadership position?
A: Oh, most definitely. I mean what I've learned at City Hall is that once you get the projects going there's just not going to be a turning back from the city. So I feel very confident that everything that we've started during this period of my time being in the council will see the light.
Q: What do you say to people in District 9, particularly in City Heights who may feel like they are losing a strong advocate on the City Council?
A: I know that the residents in District 9 are smart and they're going to like that person. So it shouldn't be just based on me because I'm going to get termed out whether I leave now or in four additional years I'll be done. So for me, my commitment to this community doesn't change. It doesn't matter where I'm at. I carry the community. This is why I got into government to change systems that are not working neighborhoods.