A reader posted this question for Ventura County Supervisor candidate Bob Roper:
By Harold Godwin
If you had been supervisor at the time, how would you have voted on the expansion Waste Management's dump in Simi Valley and the importation of trash and debris from outside of Ventura County? What is your philosophy about the rights of property owners versus those of the community? Do you believe a supervisor should vote to support any or all development in another district if the supervisor representing that district supports it? Do you believe your responsibility is only to those in your district or to the full County?
Please respond with YOUR thinking on this issue in order to give us some insight into how you make decisions. I am sure that there are many - throughout the County - who want to know more about you.
Steve Bennett - who voted with the rest of the Board to make expansion a reality - he has been silent about his reasoning.
Bob Roper replied but it was not posted. I apologize for the delay because it was caught in my spam filter. Here is his reply:
Thanks for your questions. We weren't checking Brian's blog every day, but will now keep a close eye so we can be responsive to your questions. It is important to me that a Supervisor be accessible on important issues. First, let me respond to the question about representation. My primary duty is to the people who voted me in office within my District. My next duty is to make sound policy decisions on the regional issues that affect the County as a whole. I believe in protecting private property rights within the framework of our laws and using our democratic process. Constituents are a mix of private property owners and other residents that form the foundation of our community. As a Supervisor, I refer to the "community" as a whole as its impossible to delineate between those who own property and those who rent. Second, regarding Waste Management. I do not have all the facts to give you a complete response, but let me respond to the general question. An elected Supervisor should not cast their 1/5th vote on any policy item unless they fully agree with the policy. A yes vote is a yes vote and an elected official cannot shirk his/her responsibility at a later date. A Supervisor is elected by their District voters, yet makes policy that affects the entire County. There is no written rule that you honor the issue in another District and I will cast my votes on each policy item in the best interest of my District and the County. Should you have any questions, I'm available at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime. Thank you, Bob Roper
Thank you Bob Roper for answering a question from my reader.