Fontana Mayor Pro Tem Jesse Armendarez has announced he will be running for the 5th District seat on the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors in 2020.
The 5th District includes the eastern part of Fontana as well as the cities of Colton, Rialto, and San Bernardino and the unincorporated communities of Bloomington, El Rancho Verde, Glen Helen, Arrowhead Farms, Muscoy, Little Third, and Rosena Ranch.
The district is now represented by Josie Gonzales, who will be termed out next year.
Armendarez, a local small businessman, was elected to the City Council in November of 2016, and his current term will expire in November of 2020.
“I ran for the Fontana City Council to improve the quality of life for my neighbors. Our Council has done just that, and Fontana is now one of the most thriving and prosperous cities in the county," Armendarez said in a news release. "We achieved this by investing in our infrastructure, including keeping our roads and streets pothole free and well maintained. We also hired more law enforcement officers which reduced crime rates overall. And, we attracted new businesses and convinced local businesses to expand, creating livable wage jobs for our region. We achieved this all while being fiscally responsible and balancing the city budget without new or higher taxes.”
Previously, Armendarez served on the Fontana Planning Commission and on the Fontana Unified School District Board.
“While Fontana is moving in the right direction, I noticed that San Bernardino County isn’t doing as well," Armendarez said. "Since 2013, the county budget has ballooned by almost $2 billion but the services the county provides have not improved. While we are paying higher taxes, including: $3.4 million in vehicle license taxes, $25 million in fire service taxes, 52 percent more in water rates, and a new small business fee, our violent crime rates have gone up 16 percent since 2014, and there is a need for more officers to keep us safe. To make things worse, homelessness increased 23 percent just this last year. Clearly, our county is headed down the wrong track.”
Armendarez said he wanted to bring his record from the Fontana City Council to the Board of Supervisors and get the county moving in the right direction.
"I am running for supervisor to reduce violent crime and gun violence," he said. "I am running for supervisor to create livable wage jobs for our residents. I am running for supervisor to make our streets and infrastructure pothole free and well maintained. Together, I believe we can improve our quality of life and move San Bernardino County forward.”
Armendarez was born and raised in Fontana and graduated with the first class of Fontana A.B. Miller High School. He and his wife Delene are raising their four children here.
He is a real estate agent and has been recognized by the National Association of Hispanic Realtors as one of the "Top 250" Hispanic Realtors in the United States. He is a director for the California Association of Realtors, according to the City of Fontana website.
Another candidate for the 5th District position will be Dan Flores, who is currently the chief of staff for Supervisor Gonzales as well as being a member of the Colton Joint Unified School District Board. Flores has been endorsed by Gonzales.