The San Joaquin County supervisor representing Tracy and Mountain House, Bob Elliott, announced Thursday that he will seek election in the 5th State Senate district.
Elliott, who was elected to the Tracy City Council in 2010 and left to run for supervisor in 2012, said he views this as a continuation of his life’s service.
“I served 30 years in the U.S. Army, retired as a colonel, U.S. Army Special Forces — Green Berets,” he said in an interview Thursday. “I’ve also served at the Tracy City Council level and I’m in my second and final term as a county supervisor. I want to put that experience to work for the people of the region.”
Elliott said he is prepared for state office, having formed coalitions during his time in office.
“I think one of the primary lessons you take is the need for working with other organizations and individuals,” he said. “My priorities would be strengthening our local economy, ensuring that our farms and families have the water that we need, ensuring our tax dollars are spent wisely, and keeping our families and communities safe and improving educational opportunities.”
He said that in his time on the board of supervisors, 10,000 jobs have been created in San Joaquin County.
“In economic development, we’ve seen great progress in terms of the opportunities that are available here in San Joaquin County,” he said. “The major progress has been made in encouraging Bay Area businesses to come to San Joaquin County and expand their businesses here. Or new business openings in San Joaquin County.”
Elliott said he will also focus on water supply if elected state senator. He said he is a registered Republican, and though state politics can sometimes be divisive, he’s not worried.
“As a legislator you have to represent your district — you have to represent your values. Having said that, I’ll work with people of either party if it is the best interests of my constituents and I’ll stand up to them when we’re getting the short end of the stick on things,” he said. “If there’s something that’s being proposed that’s not good for the region or the state, you have to be willing to speak up and explain why it’s not.”
The 5th Senate District includes all of San Joaquin County, Galt in Sacramento County, and Modesto and Riverbank in Stanislaus County. Sen. Cathleen Galgiani has represented the district since 2012 but is termed out of office. Voters haven’t elected a Republican to the seat since 1980, but Elliott hopes people would support him in the November 2020 election.
“Throughout my life of public service, it has always been my honor to serve,” he said. “I look forward to serving my constituents as state senator in the future.”