Voters to choose between Block, Plescia for Senate seat
By Elizabeth Marie Himchak
On Nov. 6, voters in the state Senate’s 39th District will be choosing between two candidates who have both been state Assembly members. The district includes Rancho Bernardo and Rancho Penasquitos.
Marty Block is a Democrat living in the College Area. The 62-year-old has lived in the district for more than 30 years and is married. He studied political science at Syracuse University, received a bachelor’s degree in political science and education at Indiana University and his doctor of jurisprudence from DePaul University College of Law.
He has been the 78th District’s state Assemblyman since 2008, was on the San Diego Community College Board of Trustees (2000-2008) and San Diego County Board of Education (1986-1994). He was on San Diego State University’s faculty for 26 years.
George Plescia is a Republican living in La Jolla. The 46-year-old has lived in the district for 15 years, is married and has a daughter. He has a bachelor’s degree in government from California State University Sacramento.
He is a small-business consultant and served three terms as the 75th District’s Assemblyman (2002-2008).
Block said he is running for the Senate “to complete the work I have begun in the Assembly.” This includes bringing another California State University campus to San Diego County, making public safety a top priority in California and finding ways to enhance job creation and grow the region’s economy, he said.
He listed the three greatest issues impacting the 39th District as economic growth; affordable, quality education; and public health and safety.
Plescia said he is running for the Senate because “I want to continue my work to make our community stronger. I want to represent people who want a balanced, rational approach to making public policy. As a father, a husband and as a small-business advocate, I care deeply about moving our community forward and to put people back to work.”
He listed the three greatest issues impacting the 39th District as those challenging the area’s “once robust economy.” He said these are regulatory processes that slow or kill jobs, too much government spending and the danger posed for our future financial well-being by a broken pension system. Without real pension reform he said basic services will suffer.
To change state funding of public education, Block said “we must work with local districts to increase efficiencies in public education and give flexibility in decision making to local school districts.”
Regarding public education funding, Plescia said voters overwhelming approved Proposition 98 so “the Legislature should adhere to the spirit and the letter of this mandate from the voters.” He said reform should include a school equalization fix that does not give rural school districts — like Poway Unified — less money than urban districts — like Los Angeles. “Our investment in every child’s education should be worth the same,” he said.
Both candidates said they support the proposed high-speed rail designed along Interstate 15 in the Inland Corridor, but have concerns over funding and project details. Block called it “a worthy goal to create jobs, increase mobility and reduce pollution in the long run.” Plescia said no taxpayer money should be used, the HSR bond should be repealed and it should be funded by the private sector.
Block said his endorsements reflect his “demonstrated leadership and dedication to helping the people of San Diego … my continued work for clean air, clean water and healthy communities … my ability to best protect our communities from the dangers of wildfires … my work as a judge pro tem in San Diego Superior Court and a small-business owner exposed me to the diverse concerns San Diegans face, and I will maintain open doors to all San Diegans.”
“My record of public service demonstrates that I have always added my voice to the dialogue about how to make our communities and our state better,” Plescia said. “I am a results-oriented person who will work with anyone as long as their ideas move our economy forward and enhance our quality of life as Californians.”
For more on the candidates, go to www.MartyBlock.com and www.GeorgePlescia.com.
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