The next District 5 representative on the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors must be an advocate for the West Side, candidate Channce Condit recently told Mattos Newspapers.
Condit, who is running against Tom Hallinan in the election to succeed Jim DeMartini (who did not seek re-election), pledged to provide a strong voice for Stanislaus County’s West Side.
“We want equal footing and we want to make sure that our voice is just as loud as (that of) every other area in the county,” Condit commented. “We need to make sure that Newman is just as big a priority as Modesto and Turlock, and the same goes for Crows Landing and Patterson.”
Condit is a Ceres City Council member and former legislative aide to Assemblyman Adam Gray. He currently works as an economic development specialist for Opportunity Stanislaus.
If elected to the county board, Condit said, he would step down from that position to devote himself to the role of supervisor.
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact the local economy, Condit said, it is critical that Stanislaus County support existing businesses while continuing to work on new economic development projects.
“Our businesses are being impacted now more than ever. We need to come up with creative ways to make it easier to stay afloat. We need to provide more incentives and not be a hindrance to businesses,” he stated.
Condit said he also believes that the county should have allocated more of its pandemic relief funds to its nine cities.
“The county could have been a better partner in providing more relief for our cities in general,” said Condit, who also expressed concern that COVID-19 testing is not conveniently available to Newman-area residents.
Even in the face of the pandemic, Condit said, he believes Stanislaus County has opportunities to bring in new businesses and more jobs.
The Crows Landing business park project holds significant potential, Condit stated, but government must facilitate rather than hinder that effort.
“Government has to be a good partner,” he stated. “Let’s make sure that it is the project that is right for the West Side.”
Condit said he sees room for improvement in the county’s relationship with cities - and called for a restructured tax-sharing formula.
“Our county could do a better job of offering more tax revenue for our cities,” he commented. “If we can make our individual cities stronger financially, it will make our county stronger as a whole.”
Other priorities expressed by Condit include improving infrastructure in the unincorporated communities such as Crows Landing, public safety and increased health care services on the West Side.
Homeless is another issue which must be addressed, said Condit. Resources such as Host House in Patterson provide a strong model for addressing homelessness, he said, but the issue is multi-faceted and should be addressed with a regional approach.
Condit said he would advocate setting aside a significant percentage of revenue from cannabis operations to create a regional approach toward homelessness and mental health issues.
He pledged to follow the lead of incumbent DeMartini in regularly attending Newman City Council meetings and community events. Condit said he also hopes to hold regular office hours in Newman if elected.
“I plan on being on the West Side as much as possible,” he stated.
Condit said he will bring a problem-solving approach and an independent voice to the board.
“I am not afraid to ask the tough questions,” he remarked. “I will be pro-active and accessible. I will always put the needs of the community first.”