Democratic State Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia is seeking re-election against Republican Ian Weeks in a newly drawn district that includes towns east of the Coachella Valley.
Assembly District 36 looks slightly different than what Garcia currently represents, following California’s redistricting process that ended last year. The district still includes Coachella, Indio, and all of Imperial County, but lost Cathedral City and Desert Hot Springs, which now fall under Assembly District 47.
More: Candidates for the 36th Assembly District discuss their views on inflation, the Salton Sea and abortion rights
Weeks grew up in the Temecula Valley and currently resides in Hemet. He is a Certified Financial Planner and has worked in the field for 16 years.
He said he decided to run for Assembly because he thought “there are a lot of extremely bad ideas coming out of Sacramento” and that indicators of a good quality of life “trend in the wrong direction”.
“I would focus on crime, inflation and the radical agenda in schools and the infringement of parents’ rights over their own children,” he said, adding that he planned to build on his many years of experience in finance, as well as being a husband, father and church worship leader.
He criticized Garcia’s work, saying the incumbent knew how to raise funds but wasn’t doing enough and pointed to the decades of problems at Salton Sea and the lack of affordable housing near the area.
“I promise you, you give me two years in Sacramento, you’re going to see a guy who fights hard for the everyday Californian. And I don’t think the same can be said for my opponent,” he said. -he declares.
Garcia was first elected to the Assembly in 2014, after serving as mayor of Coachella. This year, he decided to run for another term in the Legislative Assembly after weighing a candidacy for Congress in the East Valley.
Among the main goals of his campaign, Garcia highlighted solving infrastructure problems in the eastern Coachella Valley and developing lithium in the Salton Sea.
“Most people say nothing happens at the Salton Sea, (but) we’ve done tremendous work in the area of natural resources. I was the author of Prop. 68. It really brought its fruits as far as our region is concerned. The Salton Sea has seen $220 million of investment in current construction,” he said.
Proposition 68 authorized $4.1 billion for parks, natural resource protection, climate adaptation, water quality, and flood protection across California.
Of his opponent’s suggestion that he’s not doing enough with the funding he’s raising, Garcia pointed to a $60 million investment to clean up the New River at the US-Mexico border and the millions in funding used to complete the Pueblo Viejo Villas, a 105-unit affordable housing project in Coachella.
He added, “We’re talking about nearly $4 million on Grapefruit Boulevard for an urban greening project (and) $8.5 million in Indio City to build a brand new park from the ground up. in one of the neighborhoods that really needs it.”, among some of the projects currently in development.
Eliana Perez covers the eastern Coachella Valley. Contact her at [email protected] or on Twitter @ElianaPress.