By Rory O’ Sullivan, Staff Writer
Retired Public Affairs Manager for SoCalGas, Jim King is announcing his bid to join the Palm Springs City Council in the November 2015 election. King is running to replace Rick Hutcheson who will not run for a third term.
King worked with businesses large and small, elected officials, and community organizations on a daily basis while with SoCalGas.
“This is the right time for me to put my 45+ years of experience as a business leader in both Riverside and San Bernardino Counties to good use,” states King.
“He’s been a visionary leader in the Western County for many, many years,” said Jamil Dada, who has served on the California Workforce Investment Board since 2005. “He definitely has the contacts to get things done.”
King said his experience and knowledge throughout both counties makes him the perfect candidate to turn Palm Springs into a leader not just in the Coachella Valley but all of Southern California. He has been involved in more than 50 organizations throughout his career.
And with the biggest challenge facing California being water, King believes, “we must educate our neighbors and our guests in a ‘drinking water conversation.’ We have to find new ways to have sustainable communities … The key is education on these and all issues of civic importance.”
Some of the issues he is most concerned about are: safety, water conservation, Downtown Palm Springs’ revitalization, jobs, sustainability, programs for youth, seniors and low-income residents.
“I have always been known for helping people,” said King. “I’m old school and I feel that the more you give the more you get back.”
King also believes in taking action. When his neighbor’s home was robbed, he became chairman of Neighborhood Watch and revitalized the group.
His hard work and dedication to the Police Advisory Board and Palm Springs’ Neighborhood Involvement Public Safety Committee have led to several safety improvements in Palm Springs.
There is now a universal Neighborhood Watch Sign that can be seen in every neighborhood in Palm Springs which incorporates Palm Springs Police Departments’ ‘badge’ and is in both English and Spanish. Palm Springs also now has 24 block captains and just started the ‘Dog Walkers’ program.
Participants can be seen wearing safety vests with ‘DENO Neighborhood Watch’ with matching baseball caps at any given time of the day.
Since implementing the changes, crime has been cut by more than half and more than half in Deepwell Estates where King lives.
It was King’s can-do-spirit and bridge building ability that helped his neighborhood reduce their crime so drastically.
“I will make an excellent teammate on the council. I know what works and what doesn’t work,” stated King.
King emphasized that when elected one of the first items will be to ensure Measure J money is spent wisely. He wants to use Measure J for additional street repair and to increase the amount of police officers and firefighters in Palm Springs.
“The passage of Measure J has brought our city back to life but we need a long range plan to ensure the money is spent wisely,” he said.
King retired in March 2005 from SoCalGas and moved to Palm Springs in January of 2008. He currently sits on the County of Riverside Workforce Investment Board, a board member for the Deepwell Estates Neighborhood Organization, and serves as Chairman of Deepwell Estates Neighborhood Watch.
Visit www.neighborsforjimking.com for more information. Treasurer Tom Lavin. Campaign ID# 1376398.