With the many challenges currently facing our city, the San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce does not feel that it is prudent to also add on a recall of virtually all our elected (policy making) officials. At both the Chamber’s Executive Board Meeting and the latest full board meeting, it was unanimously voted upon and agreed that we should not recommend or support this action. We simply do not feel that this action makes good business sense.
We feel that the electoral democratic process should be protected and only through the normal general elections should changes be made. We are not making judgment on the job that our current elected officials are or are not doing but clearly do not condone spending an addition $220,000.00 of the city’s meager resources when close to half the council and the mayor’s seat will already be determined in the next general election. Why duplicate an election with only four months remaining on the existing terms.
The San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce is also concerned with the impact this recall will have on taking much needed resources away from resolving budget and bankruptcy deadlines. Changing players mid-stream who have started to build credibility with the court could impair the City of San Bernardino’s proceedings, possibly resulting in delays, additional expenses, and more negative publicity further tarnishing the city’s image. One of the chamber’s main objectives is to draw more business into the area. San Bernardino has attracted several businesses recently, i.e., Amazon, KAV, Boeing, Miller Honey, and Dave Wilson Volkswagen, despite our financial challenges. San Bernardino needs more business which produces jobs, not actions that drive business away.
We would urge everyone to take necessary steps to stop the recall and voice your true feelings at the next general election rather than go through this unnecessary recall process that would not solve the issues at hand but rather add to them.
As a closing general information statement, the President and CEO of the Chamber (who has a personal interest in the recall effort) recused herself from the meetings where this decision was reached to avoid an appearance of a conflict of interest within this action.
James M. Gerstenslager
San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce Chairman of the Board