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Get to Know David Leon Romo Sr, Candidate for Ward 1

David Leon Romo Sr, candidate for Ward 1 City Council in the March 2024 election, answers 14 questions about why he is running for election.

David Leon Romo Sr. is running for the open Ward 1 City Council Seat in the 2024 election.

As a part of our mission to publish news helpful to Riversiders, The Raincross Gazette is expanding our 2024 Election Guide with a series of interviews with each candidate running for a city office in the March 5, 2024 election.

Each candidate had several weeks to answer the same questions written in response to the nearly 500 questions Gazette readers submitted in a survey about their priorities for Riverside in the coming election. These answers have only been edited to fix minor grammar or spelling errors to ensure a fair representation of each candidate.

Get to Know David Leon Romo Sr

I was born and raised in this city of Riverside. I have attended Fremont Elementary School, Central Middle School, North High School, and Riverside Community College. I received my Associate of Science degree in Administration of Justice at RCC. I've also attended BIOLA, where I received a Bachelor of Science degree in Organization Leadership.

Married to Rosie Romo for 42 years, we have two grown children, David Romo Jr and Cheri Romo, and four grandchildren.

I worked for 11 years for the City of Riverside in both the Sanitation department and the Street department. When I received my education, I went to work for 19 years with Riverside County Probation Department. My assignments have been in all Riverside detention facilities, working with at-risk youth from Indio to Murrieta to Riverside. I've held the positions of Counselor, Correctional Officer III, and Supervisor (SPO).

I'm on the Board of Directors of Reid Park Little League as Vice President and Safety Officer. I see that there is more to be done in Ward 1 for future generations to come, and I look forward to serving our city.

Why are you running for office?

Being a retired Probation Officer, I have time. It is important that we do our part in helping our city improve on situations that affect us all. We must address the entire city as a whole to make the difference. Some wards, like Ward 1, are neglected. I don't want to blame anyone, but make improvements to homelessness problems, officer safety, and many more. I have many ideas for improvement in Ward 1.

What is Riverside's city government currently doing well?

Many complain of unemployment, yet the government provides city jobs, and many are still vacant. Many services within our city are provided, not always in a timely manner, but they are working on it. Our city government has made great improvements in the downtown area. They try, and I'd like to join the team to find helpful and effective solutions for all improvements in the city.

What is Riverside's greatest challenge, and how will you approach it if elected?

Transparency. I believe our government can work better with our residents of all ages. Some of our older residents are not computer literate, but they shouldn't be forgotten either. You can't just tell them to go to a website and get the information. Maybe more town hall meetings to discuss vacant lots, new and old buildings, and budget issues–issues that involve their money.

If elected, how will you improve the political discourse in Riverside?

Communication. We must improve communication on all levels. Yes, change is good, sometimes. I mentioned it before, but I'll say it again: More face-to-face town hall meetings are necessary. People or parts of this city should not be neglected or forgotten. I've been here long enough to see the needs and neglect. The people need to be heard.

What past personal collaboration that demonstrates risk and compromise are you most proud of?

I am on the board of directors for Reid Park Little League as Vice President and Safety Officer. I talk to parents regularly on issues involving our park and city. I take complaints from the parents regarding issues and address them to city personnel. Many times, I have to compromise and understand there is a process to address issues. I understand that, but sometimes the parents do not. I've also led the park in the Adopt a Street program.

How many hours a week do you expect to put into serving as a councilmember, and what is your commitment to responding to constituents?

50, maybe 60 hours. I'm able to flex my schedule as well. Working for probation, this was a requirement; I'm used to it. Weekends too!

What will you do to address the City's homelessness challenges?

Pray for them first.

I would address it at the mental hospital level. I would look at the current level of evaluation and house them accordingly. Many of them are United States Veterans and should be respected. Many have mental issues. Where are families? Are they looking for someone who may be living on our streets, and we have no way of tracking them or reuniting them with their families? Again, I have lots of ideas.

What are your plans to help Riverside's growing senior population?

Better care for seniors. Don't let them fall through the cracks of society. Many are on social security, living on a fixed income with rising rent that they can't afford with a $1,200 monthly income.

Help with medical, food, and housing for all of them. Shameful sometimes.

My own mother, 84, is barely making it on a fixed income. She had never been a criminal in her life. She raised five boys alone: one Police Sergeant for Riverside Police, Johnny Romo, one Probation officer for Riverside County, one City employee with 28 years of service, one inspector for the City of San Bernardino, and one Pepsi employee for 25 years. She and many more deserve better.

How do you plan to deal with the trash collection issues Riversiders have been contending with since early 2020?

Be more competitive with surrounding cities. Make the job more appealing.

Would you support making City Council roles full-time jobs?

No, I think new ideas are a good thing.

Romo did not answer this question.

Pending General Fund Transfer lawsuits may reduce the City’s annual budget by over $40 million; if elected, how would you respond to a 14% reduction of the City’s operating budget?

Romo did not answer this question.

What would help reduce crime in town, and how do you plan to advocate for safe communities?

More police officers. Better laws to support them as they keep us safe.

What is your position on the Riverside Transmission Reliability Project?

Romo did not answer this question.