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Ramirez enters race for City Council

Original post made on Mar 30, 2016

In his quest to embrace local government, Ramirez is now stepping up to the main event. This week, he announced his candidacy for City Council in the November election, saying he will make housing affordability his campaign's central issue.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, March 30, 2016, 12:17 PM

Comments (41)

Posted by Wonderful Citizen
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 30, 2016 at 2:26 pm

Wow! Lucas Ramirez sounds like a wonderful, splendid young man. What's more amazing is that his passion for local politics seems genuine. The explanations for his stances on issues and local concerns sound logical and well thought out. If only we could have more people like him in elected office--individuals truly devoted to the concept of public service.


Posted by Resident Homeowner
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 30, 2016 at 3:22 pm

Ramirez has my attention. He sounds committed, involved and to have the right priorities. For me this means placing a priority on community -- both home owners and renters over investors. The groups may overlap but I have been dismayed that all the good work by City staff and some Counsil members to address the immediate housing crisis was torpedoed by associations aligned with landlords. They are mostly not local and whatever they may say, do not have our community's best interests at heart. Sure, some landlords are individuals whose retirement funds are tied up in their rental properties but they probably made their investment calculations long ago and are profiting handsomely from the current market. Arguments that reasonable efforts to stabilize the market hurt landlords or disincentive them from maintaining their rental properties reveal instead naked, unvarnished capitalism, as opposed to a regulated free market, and an effort to squeeze every last penny despite the effect on families and children who rented their properties when the market wasn't so hot. Shame on them and residents and Council members who allow them to define our community. You can see how these landlords are hurting small business with a stroll down Castro Street. Nearly every business has help wanted signs, some offering above minimum wage because they cannot find workers who can afford to live here. Now we are talking about building housing for teachers. Other service employees will be next -- Police, Firefighters, etc. Why is it not good public policy to address our whole community?


Posted by Sounds nice but no thanks
a resident of Castro City
on Mar 30, 2016 at 3:56 pm

Nice puff piece from the Voice about an idealist with little real world experience who wants to tell others what to do with their own private property. I don't doubt the commentators who say he's a nice guy and it's encouraging to see a young person engaged in the community but no thanks to having a vote on the council.


Posted by Resident Homeowner
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 30, 2016 at 4:14 pm

Puff piece? What "No Thanks" have you done to better Mountain View? What is your "real world experience" that allows you to be dismissive of others? Or are you just need n it for you?


Posted by Sounds nice but no thanks
a resident of Castro City
on Mar 30, 2016 at 4:47 pm

@Resident Homeowner--

Not that it matters, but my "real world experience" includes raising a family of five in Mountain View, commuting daily on our streets, building relationships with my diverse neighbors, working with various city agencies to actually get business and neighborhood development projects done, and I know what it takes to pay over $20k/year in property taxes. I've participated in various citizen's committees in various cities that I've lived in, which among other things has enabled me to understand that in many, but not all, cases these committees are populated by people with their own agendas that do not necessarily represent the broader public. Want more? I also have a master's degree in finance and am a licensed member of the CA state bar (so in theory I should be able to independently analyze budgets, legislation, the Constitution, and the like). Then again, I'm not running for public office...

So yeah, I'm doubtful that someone with a degree in music with 4 years of real work experience should be making decisions that affect me or my neighbors. That said, to each their own.


Posted by Resident Homeowner
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 30, 2016 at 5:59 pm

@NoThanks

It does matter, thanks.

You are obviously smart, experienced, credentialed and an engaged member of our community.

I also pay significant property tax, though not as much as I should which is a whole nother issue.

My response was triggered by your comment about others telling you what to do with your own private property. Here's the difference: raw capitalism thrives for the very rich in Russia. I have many well to do Russian friends, all republicans, but neither they nor I would want to live there.

Here, we try to balance public and private interest with sometimes good public policy. Never perfect. To each our own but that's not enough. I think we have to try to define the community we want and build policy around that vision. I do not want to live in a community where all of my neighbor's are privileged and pay $20k in property taxes. I prefer a whole community where the people who teach kids, patrol streets, fight fires, sell me lattes, clean my home and tend to my garden are also my neighbor's. Actually, I don't buy lattes or have a cleaner or frequent gardener these days but I have in the past and the point remains.


Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 30, 2016 at 8:52 pm

Jennifer is a registered user.

This morning there was a program on NPR about housing in SF and one of the issues raised is that renters unfortunately are not involved in politics. I thought it would be great if Lucas would decide to enter the race. Low and Behold! Good luck Lucas. I know you will have a thoughtful voice about housing and many other issues affecting our young and mixed socioeconomic racially diverse community.


Posted by Absalom
a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 30, 2016 at 10:30 pm

Absalom is a registered user.

I believe I have seen this young fellow speak on a few occasions before City Council. As I recall, his delivery of his message is remarkably clear. I am glad to see people running for council that reflect the diversity of the community. I hope many more men and women of all ages sign up to run for Council. Let the public debates guide our votes.


Posted by Resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 30, 2016 at 11:48 pm

Will all the candidates get this kind of favorable advertising for their campaigns or just ones favored by the presumptively-named "Voice"?


Posted by Gary
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 31, 2016 at 6:05 am

Great that someone will run who is prepared to challenged the landlord lobby. The big issue now is whether the landlord-lobby endorsed City Council majority (here consisting of Michael Kasperzak, John McAlister, Chris Clark and Pat Showalter) will add a few words to section 43.30 of the (rent increase) mediation ordinance approved on "first reading" on March 15 and set for continued "second reading" (adoption) on April 26. See current VOICE editorial. Mr. Raminez should get involved in that matter. Otherwise, the tenants from whom he may be hoping for support could sooner be evicted and ousted from Mountain View. It might take just one of the four Councilmembers who voted to create the extra incentive for "bad" landlords to simply terminate existing tenancies to insist upon language (specifically proposed) to outlaw such preemptive evictions. Indeed, the City Council should not wait until April 26 to address the matter. I have offered to meet or otherwise speak with them all. And figure I will be reporting on their responses or lack thereof.


Posted by Meghan Fraley
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 31, 2016 at 1:05 pm

Lucas is our hope for the possibility of someone who will get things done with integrity on council in regards to the housing issue. There is no one more knowledgable on MV city issues than Ramirez. He has a sharp mind, a diplomatic approach, and is truly committed to a holistic approach to handling city issues than any candidate. He thinks about both homeowners, landlords and tenants. He factors in transit, land use, and environmental factors. Bottom line, he has integrity, commitment, and is as pure in his motives coming from a place of deep commitment to this city as any candidate.


Posted by @Meghan Fraley
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 31, 2016 at 1:19 pm

"get things done with integrity on council in regards to the housing issue."
What does this mean?

I understand the integrity part, but what exactly dose "getting things done...in regards to the housing issue." actually mean?
Rent control?
High density apartments?
Mandated single family home construction?

It's a very vague statement.


Posted by Josh Wolf
a resident of Rengstorff Park
on Mar 31, 2016 at 1:30 pm

In 6 years volunteering in Democratic politics in Mountain View I have been continuously impressed by Lucas' commitment, compassion, and vision for the city. I am thrilled to see him stepping into this new role as a candidate to have the opportunity to share those qualities on a broader stage, and I know that his service offers Mountain View a tremendous opportunity.


Posted by @ Resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 31, 2016 at 5:09 pm

Really I think Lucas got a favorable article because he deserves it. He shows up to nearly every important public city meeting, has a grasp of a wide range of issues important to the city and is often the smartest speaker in the room. He's done his homework and merits top reviews.


Posted by Meghan Fraley @@Meghan Fraley :)
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 31, 2016 at 6:27 pm

Hey @MeghanFraley,

Very good and important questions you raise. I encourage you to check out Lucas' website for more specifics: Web Link

That would be a more effective, precise and efficient way than me explaining his platform via a comments section. And yoi can take all the time you need to verse yourself in his perspective. I'm sure you could reach him directly if you have questions or input you would like to give him.

Lucas brings character and diplomacy to the table, as evidenced by his deep engagement with our city politics, the wide array of groups he works with, and the good relationships with people across the political spectrum of diverse opinions he has developed. There's much more to say of course, so I hope that you attend the council candidate forums/debates so we can delve in deeper. I'm guessing you have some opinions, as we all do, and civic engagement is about us working these things out together and taking in many sides of the issues. So, I look forward to further dialogue with you in person, hear and talk to all the candidates, and get specific how we want to tackle these issues together as a community.

May we continue to move forward on developing a community incorporating the voices and needs of the young, old, homeowners, renters, businesses and all the wonderful people that make our diverse and vibrant city great!


Posted by Gary
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 31, 2016 at 9:17 pm

Good that Lucas Ramirez already has some active supporters. But if he is actually going to challenge the big special interests -including the landlords - I suggest he start by keeping tenants from preemptive eviction (explained above) and getting far more tenants registered to vote. Nowadays, adult citizens may register by completing a card or signing up online at registertovote.ca.gov.


Posted by Resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Mar 31, 2016 at 11:02 pm

"Really I think Lucas got a favorable article because he deserves it."

According to you. If the Voice doesn't cover the election impartially then I will ignore it. Calling a candidate in a contested race a "civics dynamo" is not in the same galaxy as "impartial".


Posted by Jim Griffith
a resident of another community
on Apr 1, 2016 at 12:22 pm

I've been interacting with Lucas for several years as part of regional discussions on issues like housing, environmental sustainability, and transit, and he's become a friend. While I don't always agree with him (I usually do, but not always), he is easily one of the most prepared and qualified candidates for city council that I've ever met. And I get asked for endorsements pretty much monthly. He's smart, he's inquisitive, he's done his homework, and he's running for the right reasons. Mountain View would be lucky to elect him. Frankly, if Mountain View elects him, Sunnyvale will be lucky too.

Knowing Lucas as I do, I strongly disagree with the notion that this article is "favorable advertising". It's simply "a factual assessment of Lucas", and I'm not the first person here to think so.


Posted by To Meghan Fraley @@Meghan Fraley :)
a resident of Castro City
on Apr 1, 2016 at 1:09 pm

@Meghan Fraley @@Meghan Fraley :)

I've looked at every page on the website and nowhere does it actually identify or propose any solutions to the two problems (housing and transit) that he identifies. From the website itself:

"I will strongly support policies that will increase the amount of affordable housing in Mountain View, and I will work to improve the safety, reliability, and convenience of alternative modes of transportation."

That's nice, but how will he accomplish these things? Vague references to thinks like increasing the amount of affordable housing" are meaningless? Does he support EVERY policy that he believes will increase affordable housing? What exactly is affordable housing, anyway? From whose perspective?

For someone so presumably well-versed in city workings, the lack of clear, concise platform and proposals for each issue is troubling.


Posted by I smell a campaign worke
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 1, 2016 at 2:37 pm

Vague political comments without any substance or REAL indication of what he has in mind, and a supporter signing his praises with repeated vague statements.
We've had enough of that this election season.

Is he in favor of some form of rent control?

That is a quintessential question on where he stands. If you do not know this you are following blindly. If you do know this and won't say, it is because you are trying to hide something from potential voters.

It's really quite simple. We're a VERY educated voter base so quit with the vague statements. They stand out like a sore thumb as someone afraid to lose votes because of what he will or won't do.


Posted by I smell garbage
a resident of another community
on Apr 1, 2016 at 3:59 pm

So, poster from "Another Mountain View Neighborhood" -- WHY are you so upset at Mr. Ramirez? Your attitude towards him seems to be less motivated by any of his stances, and more to do with some sort of personal animus.

Whatever it may be, it is coming across as some sort of temper tantrum.


Posted by mike
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 1, 2016 at 6:12 pm

so much back and forth already and it is april -

- i think it would be nice to have on the council someone who can relate to the
difficulties experienced by the lower income residents of our city
considering the marked socioeconomic changes we are experiencing
- i think it would be great to have a young energetic person who has
interest and expertise on the council

the issues that were confronted by council years ago were more typical than the issues now: stagnant wages, displacement from housing, a rising number of homeless, a marked increase in vehicle dwellers, the increasing demands on our Community Service Agency, the continual disappearance of low wage workers, the effects of all this on our school children, the marked increase in housing, the need for new ideas on transportation and the gradual gentrification etc -- --- a new young person who has grown up with these issues can make important contributions to the discussion and the decision process



Posted by I smell the truth
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 2, 2016 at 7:55 am

Wow. So apparently if you call someone out for making vague non-substantial promises during an election you get attacked.

"Your attitude towards him seems to be less motivated by any of his stances..."
If you know of any of these "Stances" please post them. Is he in favor or against rent control? Simple, simple question that he SHOULD have an opinion on if he's been following the developments of that issue.

The poster is spot on correct about the vague statements that have no real detail as to the direction the candidate will take.
It is glaringly missing and apparently either nobody actually knows what his plans are, or they are afraid to ask/say.

People are demanding better than the political "Status quo" about making feel good promises without letting us know where they actually stand on the issues and what action they will take.
I guess to simply ask that of a candidate is asking too much for these who would follow blindly without such information.




Remember: He's great and will do great things" is fluff. Specifics get the votes. At this point wonder what his supports are so defensively angry about.


Posted by Voter
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 2, 2016 at 11:19 am

He seems like a genuine young man who would listen and be engaged. But,

Does he favor rent control? Yes.
Would he likely support a lane closure on El Camino? Yes.

No thanks.


Posted by Gary
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 2, 2016 at 1:21 pm

I see nothing in the article about Mr. Ramirez supporting bus-only lanes on El Camino. I do not recall that he ever spoke in support of such a wasteful use of lane space. That will be an issue. Some folks did support bus-only lanes on the basis that they could help lower-income residents and workers. Councilmember Ken Rosenberg cited lower-income earners and said last April 21 that he supported the taking of lanes for buses only on some conditions - including that one stop be at Escuela. There is no plan for a stop there. And most people now realize that seizing lanes for occasional buses is a bad idea that would shut down other traffic and businesses on and near El Camino.


Posted by Resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 2, 2016 at 3:02 pm

It is interesting that some people accuse others having "personal animus" right before they go on to make their own ad hominem attacks.


Posted by I smell garbage
a resident of another community
on Apr 2, 2016 at 4:02 pm

Resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood -- "It is interesting that some people accuse others having "personal animus" right before they go on to make their own ad hominem attacks."

Those who live in glass houses should not cast stones.


Posted by Emily Ramos
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 3, 2016 at 8:55 am

Emily Ramos is a registered user.

I'm so excited to see such a big response from Lucas' announcement. I have heard so many people encourage him to run, but I'm pleasantly stunned by how much people support him.

For those wondering where he stand on certain issues or why people are so supportive, you are welcome to email him at [email protected]

There's also a contact form on the website.


Posted by Nuff said
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 3, 2016 at 9:13 pm

I'm with "Voter" and "I Smell the Truth"......I want specifics, not this vague "sounds good but what does it really mean" stuff.

His website says he's been a member of VTA committees and supports alternative modes of transportation.....if that isn't double speak for support of busses and removing of lanes on ECR then please, Lucas, correct me now.


Posted by No VTA
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 4, 2016 at 10:43 am

We most assuredly do NOT need a pawn of VTA on our Council. Absolutely NOT!
I can see why they needed to be vague here.


Posted by Emily Ramos
a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 4, 2016 at 1:50 pm

Emily Ramos is a registered user.

@Nuff Said

He doesn't read or respond to anonymous comments, so like I said before:

For those wondering where he stand on certain issues or why people are so supportive, you are welcome to email him at [email protected]

There's also a contact form on the website.

He's also at all the City Council meetings, so you can ask him then, too.


Posted by Still waiting for substance
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 4, 2016 at 2:26 pm

It'd be nice if he came out and said things instead of telling us to go hunt for answers to VERY simple questions. Like others have said, his web page is also vague with no direct stance given on any of the hot topics.

Is he in favor of rent control? Do his supporters even know??? If so, why won't you tell us. If you don't know, how can you support him? Maybe just friends/family, I get that, but "Are you in favor of some form of rent control?" has been answered directly by others.
It's a simple yes or no question, but he seems afraid to actually take a stand, or let his stand on the issue be known.

Be wary of the messenger who hides his message...he knows it is not a popular one.


Posted by No Temptation
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 4, 2016 at 3:10 pm

Every now and again, I come to Town Square, poke my head around, and then leave due to the ultra negative comments left here. It is clear that the majority of Town Square participants (that is, those who actually leave comments) are fighting to keep MV the way it once was. They espouse a belief that new development is bad, that renters who can't afford the new market rates are bad, that trying to help said renters is bad, that public transit is bad, that the City spending money on nearly anything, is bad, that car dwellers being "allowed" to stay in MV is bad, etc etc etc.

I don't think Mr. Ramirez owes any of you anything. It's clear from his page that he favors rent control to confront gentrification of MV and that having greater access to public transit is important for everybody. Since the campaign for City Council only begins in earnest in August, after the registration period is closed, why don't you just wait to have these burning questions answered. And if you're worried about his positions, step up to the plate, uncloak your Town Square anonymity, and become a candidate. That way, we'll truly see what MV residents want out of their council -- his views or yours. Actually, the voters have already done that. So many people who hang out here supported Jim Neal in the last two elections because he was against nearly everything, too. He came in last place both times. In other words, the majority of people in the city, not the majority of people on Town Square, disagree with you. Mr. Ramirez would be foolish to try and convince you that his policy ideas are better than yours. You've already made up your mind and won't vote for him anyway.


Posted by @No Temptation
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2016 at 9:55 am

If you think anywhere near a majority of TS posters supported Jim Neil, you must have selectively read them, but as you stated, you don't come here often so you likely don't see the full picture. To be sure, he was resoundingly bashed here by the majority of posters and the votes he did get were representative of how I saw how people viewed him here. That's the real story of Jim's campaign here on the boards.

Back to this thread though, I'm so very done with angry politics, where supporters or detractors respond to very valid questions with anger and spite.
I have a bad feeling about this one already. It's early though, more choices have and will continue to appear.


Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 5, 2016 at 10:39 am

Jim Neal is a registered user.

Since my name is being liberally bandied about here, I think I will weigh in on the matter.

I was very active on the Town Square boards because I care a great deal about the City of Mountain View and it's future. I also believed that it was vitally important that people have ALL available information on an issue, while also providing my own personal views on issues that people could agree or disagree with. Unfortunately, many of those who disagreed decided to resort to personal insults rather than a reasoned discussion of the facts.

I can't say for sure whether or not the majority of people on TS supported or opposed me, but the one thing that I can tell you is that no one who read what I had to say had any confusion about where I stood on any particular issue or why.
It is a fact that I spoke in opposition to many things, but that is because I saw the negative effects that those things would have on low and middle income residents (such as the skyrocketing rents I predicted as a result of all the new office space approvals).


I also think that it is unfortunate that this article's author, Mark Noack, was not around for the last election. He seems to be a much better reporter than his predecessor, in my opinion. No one at the Voice even noticed that I had attended almost every City Council Meeting IN ADDITION TO almost every EPC meeting. Also, when I announced that I was running, that too was ignored, as was the fact that I am the first Black man to ever run for city council in Mountain View history. I was the also most vocal supporter of keeping The Milk Pail and the most vocal opponent of BRT lanes.

Evidently, Mr Noack takes his job seriously and at least gets the basic facts out before the public so they can make a fully informed decision about the candidate for whom they are voting. Elections are decided as much by information that is withheld (positive as well as negative) as by information that is revealed.


Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


Posted by disgusted voter
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2016 at 11:19 am



"...I'm so very done with angry politics, where supporters or detractors respond to very valid questions with anger and spite."

~~~~~

+1


I'll add that the repeated personal attacks against Jim Neal, posted here on Town Square during his campaign for city council were beyond the pale.


Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 5, 2016 at 1:03 pm

Mr. Neal,

Hopefully you will consider running again. I don't recall your entire platform but being pro Milk Pail and against the BRT lane boondoggle goes a long way towards earning my vote!


Posted by Neal for Council
a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 5, 2016 at 1:13 pm

Jim, you'd have my vote if you ran again. You always speak with a calm, educated, well-informed voice of reason. I'd also be interested in helping with your campaign. Not that I have any experience but I'd be glad to pass out flyers, help with marketing etc.

Any chance you'd make a run for it?


Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 5, 2016 at 1:16 pm

@No Temptation--

You state "Mr. Ramirez would be foolish to try and convince you that his policy ideas are better than yours."

You couldn't be more wrong. Politics is a battle of ideas and a candidate SHOULD BE trying to convince me that his policy ideas are better -- through mastery of the facts, empirical data and vision. Not just vague, amorphous statements. Most of the people in my neighborhood are very open-minded when it comes to solutions but have had far too much of "just trust me" in politics (national, state and local) over the last couple decades.


Posted by James T
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Apr 5, 2016 at 2:27 pm

I think this sort of into into the world ,of politics can be classified as a "Stumble out of the gates" I'm interested to see how well he learns and adapts. I absolutely encourage Mr Ramirez to stay the course. Politics is always a bumpy ride, and though I likely won't vote for any rent control supporters, I value your input and energy in the affairs of our town.


Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 6, 2016 at 8:08 am

Jim Neal is a registered user.

Thanks to everyone who has offered me words of encouragement and support, but unless I win the lottery, I will not be running again this year. The first time I ran, the most anyone spent on a campaign was about $20,000. When I ran the last time, special interests spent over $200,000 against me. Since my campaigns were primarily self financed and I accepted only local donations without any special interest ties, there was no way for me to compete with that kind of money. I'm just an everyday middle-class working person who loves the City and who wanted to make a difference.

I still intend to be as active as I can be in local politics and who knows what things will be like 2 years from now. Maybe I will try again if I can get the resources lined up. Thanks again to everyone and if anyone has any concerns/input about city matters that you want me to bring up to the Council or address personally, please send me an email with the subject "City" to my email address below.


Jim Neal
Old Mountain View
[email protected]


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