Tustin Council member Deborah Gavello has decided not to seek re-election. She sent us this statement below:
“It is with mixed emotions that I have decided not to seek re-election to the Tustin City Council. Under the best of conditions, four years of public service can take its toll on any elected official. As a single parent, juggling family, work, and council duties it is especially demanding and made ever more challenging by the toxic atmosphere created by a majority of its elected officials.
I am proud of the grassroots campaign I ran in 2008 becoming only the fourth woman and first democrat to be elected to the Council. From the onset it was apparent that my colleagues were not going to put partisan politics aside to work together for the best interests of the community.
Despite the challenge of having unequal access to information, being barred from serving on outside committees, having few resources, and withstanding the brunt of repeated bullying, I am proud of my service, my strength, and the independence I brought to the dais including:
• Calling for the end of no-bid contracts
• Spotlighting Treasurer’s violations of our investment policy
• Questioning the value of “consulting contracts”
• Opposing the water rate increase
• Supporting consideration of replacing city water service for more effective service from IRWD
• Assisting residents with their concerns and issues
• Advocating for public parks and open space
I leave the council with the hope that new members will allow diversity of ideas and perspectives and return the discourse to a level of professionalism that our residents deserve.”
Gavello was instrumental in exposing the bullying behavior and lack of fiscal conservativism of former mayor and current term out Council member Jerry Amante. While Amante, without naming her, accused Gavello of being behind the recall of Amante which fell a few thousand signatures short of making the ballot. Gavello was begged to join the effort but refused. She is one of the more principaled members of the Tustin City Council and a number of residents of Tustin are going to miss her.