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Meet the Candidates : Oxnard Mayor

In all, there are more than 130 candidates running in key races in Ventura County this year. On the following pages, you will find capsule summaries of their backgrounds and their positions on key issues.

November 03, 1996

Three challengers are running against Mayor Manuel Lopez for the city's top spot. The key issues include battling gang violence in the city, providing affordable housing and controlling development. Anthony De La Cerda did not submit information.

Oscar Karrin

Age: 80

Occupation: Retired caterer

Education: One year at Brooklyn College, three years at Interboro Institute in New York City

Background: Karrin, a 41-year member of Boy Scouts of America, has been running for office since 1982. He was a member of the board of directors of Gray Law, a senior citizens assistance group, and Food Share, a program that provides food for needy people.

Issues: Karrin is emphasizing the need to bolster police and fire protection, although he does not support the police and fire utility tax. He says the money can be found without taxing residents. In addition, Karrin supports revitalizing downtown Oxnard by offering businesses incentives to locate there. Karrin is critical of the council for development that has brought stores to the city in the past few years but not to the downtown area.


Manuel Lopez

Age: 59

Occupation: Optometrist

Education: Postgraduate School of Optometry, UC Berkeley

Background: Lopez is seeking reelection for his second term as mayor. He was formerly a councilman for 14 years. He has served on the city's planning commission, redevelopment agency and the community relations commission. He was one of the founders of the Veterans Memorial in Plaza Park.

Issues: Lopez says some of his key issues include economic growth and a revitalization of the downtown area. Because the city is coming out of a recessionary period, it needs to plan wisely for a better future with solid ideas for job growth and economic development, he says. In addition, he supports continuing Neighborhood Watch programs, police storefronts and providing additional police officers.


Robert Randy Taylor

Age: 43

Occupation: Educational consultant/chemical dependency counselor

Education: Graduate of the Chemical Dependency Program, UC Berkeley

Background: Taylor worked at a hospital as a counselor for teenagers. He has been a volunteer at the Omega Boys Club in San Francisco, 12 Step Programs, Center of Juvenile and Criminal Justice as well as part of the gang prevention program in the San Francisco mayor's office.

Issues: Taylor's emphasis will be crime, gang prevention and youth counseling. He says there must be a stronger link between youth and private business to increase vocational training and education. He says he would like to see a rebirth of the traditional values of neighborhood caring and community involvement. He says it is important to focus on the dangers of racism and lack of job opportunities in order to improve the community.

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