Recently, County Commission Candidate Eric Lasso and I had the chance to chat about stability in District 3 and caution with public funds. Here’s what he had to say.
FT: Orange County District 3 hasn’t had stable elected leadership in over two years. Why do you believe you’re the best candidate to provide a voice for the area?
Lasso: I believe we need more business people and less bureaucrats to serve in government. I also feel I would bring new, fresh ideas to represent the diversity of the district. The district has a 40% Hispanic population, including myself, and its no secret the Hispanic community has been underepresented when it comes to appointments and positions in the County. Those are all the reasons why I know I am the most qualified.
FT: If elected, what would be your top priority?
Lasso: My top priority is to bring jobs back to Orange County. 65% of all new jobs are created by small business. As someone who is a small business owner I know the challenges the small businesses face and what it takes to help them prosper in the county. I also believe we should diversify our economy beyond the 2 or 3 target industries. In the investment world I tell clients all the time “dont put all your eggs in one basket”. In Orange County we have too many of our economic eggs in one basket.
FT: Recently, you found thousands of misplaced dollars during a televised investigative report. Do you believe there might be more of that at the county level?
Lasso: Absolutely. In my opinion 20% of your tax dollars are wasted at Orange County. Most of the time it is staff that waste money and its hidden in the consent agenda of the Commissioners. I think we need a financial expert commissioner, like myself, who can look out for these things and make sure the taxpayers dollars are spent appropriately.
FT: What do you think of the current county commission? Has there been a vote that you felt strongly one way or another on?
Lasso: There are 2 big votes that I did not agree with. One the vote for the new health care plan for the county employees. As someone with a Health Insurance license it wasn’t really set up how I would have recommended. from what I understand the main county employee who spearheaded this plan is no longer there because it was such a debacle. The redistricting vote is another one where I disagree. That vote only passed by one vote and I felt certain Commissioners were trying to gerrymander the district in their favor due to upcoming elections.
FT: What is something the voters might not know about you or your campaign.
Lasso: One thing people may not know about me is that although I may not seem like a risk taker in 2009 I ran with the Bulls in Pamplona, Spain. It was great experience and luckily I came back in one piece!
Lasso’s website can be found here. He faces opposition from Lydia Pisano, Pete Clark, and Lui Damiani.