Mecham out, Debbie Peterson in on county board race

March 10, 2015
Debbie Peterson

Debbie Peterson


Former Grover Beach Mayor Debbie Peterson announced Tuesday plans to run against San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill for the District 3 seat while District 1 Supervisor Frank Mecham said he will not be running for reelection.

San Luis Obispo City Councilman Daniel Carpenter said he is also considering running for the District 3 supervisor seat.

Peterson filed an intention to run for supervisor in 2016 with the clerk recorder on Friday.

Peterson, who said she will hold a press conference in the next few weeks to outline her platform, said she opposes development in Cherry and Price canyons and the Nipomo Mesa without the developer having first secured sufficient water sources for each project. In addition, she is concerned about development in the airport flight path.

“I cannot support housing in an area that an expert citizen advisory committee opposes for reasons of safety,” Peterson said.

A real estate broker, Peterson served on the Grover Beach Planning Commission for four years, followed by four years as a Grover Beach City Council Member and most recently, as mayor, 2012-2014. During her mayoral term, Peterson advocated reorganization of the South San Luis Obispo County Sanitation District, taking it from losses of $1 million a year to operating in the black.

Peterson says that she will bring strive to bring a more collaborative approach to problem solving on the SLO Board of Supervisors.

“The SLO County Board of Supervisors has been limited by supervisors whose leadership style advocates “collegiality” (go along to get along) while threatening and demeaning colleagues and community members who hold dissenting viewpoints,” Peterson said. “The Board will be more effective in serving the community when supervisors address one another and the community with respect and embrace spirited discourse to reach solutions.”

When District 1 Supervisor Frank Mecham first ran for office in 2008, he said he would only run for two terms making this his last. However, last month he said he was not ready to disclose his intentions.

“Originally I had intended to announce in June of this year my intentions on whether or not I will run for re-election,” Mecham said. “However, I’ve decided to announce earlier that I will not be running for re-election in 2016. I am declaring this now to allow ample time for those that wish to seek this position the opportunity to mount a campaign to do so.”


Anyone but Hill.

I really wonder if Hill’s lap dogs in the City of SLO can pull them through a real challenge?


I am less worried about Hill’s lap dogs in the city of SLO than his lap dogs in the County Democrat Party organization that would be likely to squelch a challenge from within the party. (Yes, I know there is significant overlap between the two.)


As the association between Adam Hill, Fulks, Tom Jones, John Shoals, Matt Guerrero, Aaron Ochs, and the rest of the gang comes to light, we may see a few of the players attempt to minimize their apparent involvement.

These guys are a dirty bunch, and we’re going to be learning even more in the months to come.

Let’s see which rat jumps ship first.


Don’t know anything about Peterson, except that she is not Adam Hill. And that is probably enough.


This is precious. Peterson running against Hill from the enviro left? What’s next — Arnold joining the Sierra Club?


When Hill pulls to the “right” on development issues to satisfy campaign contributors, it leaves the door open for a moderate to take a “more” environmentalist position. This is less about Peterson being a liberal than about Hill not being one on certain development issues. He reminds me of certain national Democrat figures whose liberal image is belied by their almost total support of the desires of Wall Street and the defense industry

Mike Byrd

Maybe you’re thinking of a different Peterson?

Mr. Holly

All elected officials should follow in the foot steps of Mr. Mecham and limit their time in office to 2 terms. There should be ordinances put in place to make this happen. Recently we have seen what long term candidates try to get away with and now the people are voting them out of office, usually after the damage has been done.


Collegiality: Colleagues are those explicitly united in a common purpose and respecting each other’s abilities to work toward that purpose. A colleague is an associate in a profession or in a civil or ecclesiastical office.

To “go along to get along” is another thing altogether, and generally connotes a lack of respect for another’s position.

Do we want a leader who has so little respect for our common language?


So in your book, her error means a lack of respect for our common language?

I’ll take a potential leader that has respect for the general public. And I have a feeling that if you asked her, she’d be willing to correct herself…unlike what we’ve all witnessed over the past 2 terms of the A. Hill.

Stick to your cartoons Dude!

debbie peterson

Thank you, NorCoMod for giving me the benefit of the doubt.

No mistake here. The use of the term ‘collegiality’ on County governing bodies has evolved as defined in the following Wikipedia excerpt.

“Classical authors such as Max Weber consider collegiality as an organizational device used by autocrats to prevent experts and professionals [fellow board members or minority board members] from challenging monocratic and sometimes arbitrary powers [board majority]. More recently, authors such as Eliot Freidson (USA), Malcolm Waters (Australia) and Emmanuel Lazega (France) have shown that collegiality can now be understood as a fully fledged organizational form. This is especially useful to account for coordination in knowledge intensive organizations [government institutions and boards] in which interdependent members jointly perform non routine tasks – an increasingly frequent form of coordination in knowledge economies [governance]. A specific social discipline comes attached to this organizational form, a discipline described in terms of niche seeking, status competition, lateral control, and power among peers.”

This formed part of my response to a 2013 League of Women Voters’ letter to community leaders asking them to share their approach to civil discourse. You can see the full letter at:


Colleague, or collaborator ?

Peterson conspired with the anti-enviro faction ( including Supervisor Arnold, COLAB, and Tea party functionaries ) to sabotage the Dunes dust rules.

A pretty face, a smile, and a hidden agenda.


I am still not sure which faction is right on the Dunes dust rules. I am sure that some of those opposing them are “anti-enviros” but that doesn’t mean that all are. Could it be that the APCD is grossly exaggerating the State Beach recreational vehicle activity’s contribution to pollution on the Mesa? While I would like to be able to trust them, an agency whose budget comes from fines they place on others is automatically suspect in my book.

debbie peterson

Slowerfaster, I don’t do hidden agenda. My views were right out in the open.

I agreed with at least half the APCD board who had concerns about the defensibility of the Dust Rule as written. In unanimously approving its consent agreement with State Parks, the board addressed everything we suggested.

Had the other half of the board and their alternates not staged a ‘no show,’ six months of expensive litigation could have been avoided and the APCD could have moved that much more quickly to pursue its primary mission of protecting air quality.

Really, is half the APCD board made up of COLAB and Tea Party functionaries? Responsible legislation (the job of the board) that expedites the APCD clean air mission is anything but anti-environmental. Most important, it is pro-physical and pro-fiscal health.


“The SLO County Board of Supervisors has been limited by supervisors whose leadership style advocates “collegiality” (go along to get along)…”

How did she miss listening to Ms. Arnold?

Anyway, they could copy the US Congress I guess……………………


Maybe she just drowns her out, like everyone does.


YES MF….much like the voters that put in the current mayor and whack jobs you so adamantly support here in morro Bay.


Anyone to replace dumb/dumber Hill!!!

Rich in MB

We also need to give a little credit to Mr Mecham.

He put a self imposed term limit on himself and held to his word.

Mike Byrd

Unlike Mrs. Capps.

Rich in MB

You mean Mrs Capps that lied in her attack ads….sure.


Go Debbie, GO!

We are thrilled to have such a great option to A Hill and will support you 100%!