Debbie is endorsed by the Half Moon Bay Review and San Mateo Daily Journal!
Reelect Debbie Ruddock
You know me. I’ve invested much time and energy over 30 years, working with neighbors and other locals to help make Half Moon Bay a better, or at least a more interesting, place, first as a neighborhood activist working on coastal protection and growth issues and as a parent helping in our public schools; then as a city councilmember and mayor.
As I was considering running for reelection, I remembered a watershed moment for me from more than 20 years ago. At the time, several major residential subdivisions with hundreds of homes were in various stages before the planning commission, and we citizen activists, some of us like myself relative newbies to town, were regularly showing up in force at public meetings to comment and oppose what we felt was poor planning. I read a quote in the newspaper from a powerful local personality nicknamed the Godmother. She said of us citizens, “They don’t live here; they just sleep here,” dismissing our claims to a say in the matter. What I perceived was that, on the one hand, she and the council were doubling down on a full-on bedroom community vision for Half Moon Bay, inviting new folks like myself and my family to move here, and on the other hand sending the message we were second-class citizens compared to the old timers. One councilmember at a meeting actually ordered me: “Sit down and shut up”.
That was a wake-up call for me, shaping my outlook on how our local government should serve us and what it means to have and be a community. I believe, as groundbreaking New York City planner Jane Jacobs opined, that we can create a community that serves ALL of us only if ALL of us are involved in creating it. You can count on my continued commitment to including all of you at our community table.
This early experience also helped me settle on the kind of community I wanted: not a bedroom community, not a tourist community, but an authentic community where we can safely engage each other in conversations that matter and even enjoy it; a welcoming community that takes and reflects pride in itself; a community that invests in public assets and public spaces — our schools, library, parks, and our downtown; a community that celebrates itself and we each other with our music, art, and theater; a community where we look out for each other however long we’ve lived here and whatever our differences.
In short, I want a community where all of us who want to can live, work and play here, and retire here and stay here, and have a say on how we accomplish this. Our City’s motto is “Live-Work-Play”. This is not an empty slogan for me. This is my vision and mission I offer to you.
It’s been my pleasure to serve you and work with you to preserve our little slice of paradise. I would be grateful for your support again on November 6.