View Mobile Site

Ask the Expert

Signal Photos


Scott Wilk: Vote for Sharon Runner

Right Here, Right Now

Posted: December 30, 2010 8:54 p.m.
Updated: December 31, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Groucho Marx once said, “I don’t care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members.”

But what about joining a club that is wildly unpopular, and $25 billion in debt? Anyone but the most resilient optimist would say, “no, thanks.”

Last week, state Sen. George Runner, R-Antelope Valley, resigned his 17th Senate District in anticipation of being sworn in as a member of the Board of Equalization. Therefore, whoever wins the special election Feb. 15 to fill his expiring Senate term will be joining such a club.

According to the September 2010 California Field Poll, the state Legislature has a 10-percent approval rating — an all-time low.

A November 2010 report from the California Legislative Analyst’s Office forecasts a $25.4 billion general fund deficit for California between now and the time the Legislature enacts a 2011-12 state budget.

The budget problem consists of a $6 billion projected deficit for 2010-11, and a $19 billion gap between projected revenues and spending in 2011-12.

The last six budget cycles, Gov. Schwarzenegger and the Legislature have punted on making tough decisions. They relied on budget gimmicks, “revenue bonds,” federal bailout dollars and unrealistic income projections to annually cobble together a state budget.

It is ironic that Schwarzenegger, the star of “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” has contributed to state government’s impending judgment day, but he won’t be around to play the role of governor. That will be up to incoming Gov. Jerry Brown.

With judgment day on the horizon, I want a state senator who is wise, experienced, compassionate and understands what it takes to run and grow a business. That is why our best choice is Sharon Runner.

Sharon, an educator, entrepreneur, former state legislator, community leader, mother and grandmother, has the experience to hit the ground running on day one.

Sharon was born in California and raised in the 17th Senate District. This is important because she knows what California was and can become again. Institutional memory will be an important asset when working within a legislature of term-limited members.

In 1977, Sharon co-founded Desert Christian Schools in Lancaster. Today, the schools serve nearly 1,700 students of all ages at its three campuses and is one of the largest private schools in California.

Sharon started a successful public relations and marketing company. Sharon has always made time to volunteer, serving on organizations such as the United Way, the Care Net Pregnancy Resource Center, Antelope Valley Crime Task Force and the Antelope Valley Hospital Gift Foundation.

Sharon was elected to the State Assembly in 2002 in the 36th Assembly District. Her primary focus during her tenure was public safety, education and children’s issues.

In Sacramento, she served on numerous committees, including the Veterans Affairs Committee, the Housing and
Community Development Committee, the Select Committee on Foster Care, the Select Committee on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, as well as the Republican Task Force on the Environment, Energy and the Economy.

She also held key fiscal leadership positions, serving as the vice chair of the Appropriations Committee and as a member of the Budget Committee.

 In her first term, Sharon was an integral part of several major policy decisions and worked closely with her leadership team, the governor’s office and business leaders to successfully reform California’s workers’ compensation system.

Of her extensive list of public achievements, Sharon was an author of California’s Proposition 83, or Jessica’s Law, which created the nation’s toughest sex predator law.

Sharon knows the Santa Clarita Valley well through her advocacy on regional issues such as transportation and her time spent in Santa Clarita with her husband, Sen. George Runner.

Within 24-hours of her Senate announcement, a wide swath of SCV local elected leaders endorsed her including Assemblyman Cameron Smyth; Mayor Marsha McLean and City Council members Bob Kellar and Laurene Weste; William S. Hart Union High School District board President Bob Jensen; College of the Canyons board President Michele Jenkins; and a host of others. 

During these challenging times, we need leaders who are optimistic. Optimism builds hope, and hope drives purpose. Sharon Runner is that kind of leader.

Scott Wilk is a member of the California Republican Party and an elected member of the Republican Party of Los Angeles County. His column reflects his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal. “Right Here, Right Now!” runs Fridays and rotates among local Republicans.


Most Popular Articles

There are no articles at this time.
Commenting not available.
Commenting is not available.


Powered By
Morris Technology
Please wait ...