The Mountain View City Council race is beginning to heat up with all three incumbents and three newcomers having pulled papers so far for the November election.
The challengers are Justin Cohen, Berkley Hinton and Alex Mrozack, according to the city clerk’s office. Other than pulling papers, none of the three have made public announcements about their campaigns.
It was a big weekend for incumbents Lucas Ramirez, Ellen Kamei and Alison Hicks, as all three held their campaign kickoff parties.
The deadline to file candidate papers for anyone else hoping to throw their hat in the ring is this Friday, Aug. 12.
Mayor Ramirez, who announced his intention to run for reelection in early June, has already brought in about $12,000 in campaign contributions during the most recent filing period from Jan. 1 to June 30, 2022, according to FPPC filings posted to the city’s website. The reported donations come from a few dozen community members, including county Supervisor Joe Simitian, Rental Housing Committee member Emily Ramos and other Bay Area locals who reside both in and out of Mountain View.
“My campaign is going better than I anticipated,” Ramirez told the Voice. “I’m overwhelmed and deeply humbled by the support I've gotten so far.”
Ramirez held his campaign kickoff party on Aug. 7, during which Simitian and U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Palo Alto) both spoke in support.
“It's been a remarkable experience working with them over the last few years,” Ramirez said. “Through the pandemic, the city of Mountain View received support from every level of government.”
If reelected, Ramirez said he’d like to have fellow incumbents Vice Mayor Hicks and Council member Kamei continue to serve by his side. Both Hicks and Kamei announced their candidacies earlier this summer.
“We’ve all been attending each others’ kick-offs,” Ramirez said. “This council has worked really well together. We’ve accomplished a lot despite the challenges created by the pandemic, the housing crisis, inflation – things that are afflicting every community. … I’m hoping we can continue to work together over the next four years.”
Kamei gathered the second highest number of donations in the last filing period, reporting that her campaign raised nearly $2,500 from about a dozen community members, including Santa Clara County Chief of Staff Wendy Ho and California State Assembly Chief of Staff Ryan Guillen. Her total contributions between Jan. 1 and June 30 top out at about $5,600 because she transferred $3,200 over from her 2018 campaign. Kamei additionally received a $1,000 donation on Aug. 4 from Foothill-De Anza Community College Trustee Gilbert Wong.
Kamei’s kickoff party was held Aug. 7 and also attended by Congresswoman Eshoo.
"She is how I started out my career in public service," Kamei said of Eshoo. "I worked for her in 2008 as a staff assistant and that was my first position working on Capitol Hill for her, so it felt like a full circle moment for me to have her there."
Vice Mayor Hicks held her kickoff party Aug. 6, featuring community activists Olga Melo and Marilu Cuesta as her speakers.
“They’ve been very active for over a decade in the Latinx community, particularly on housing issues and making sure that (the Latinx) community made it through the pandemic without being evicted and making sure that low income people can stay in our community,” Hicks told the Voice. “So that was, to me, a very exciting kickoff speech.”
Hicks reported raising $1,000 during the latest filing period from a loan she made to her own campaign.