Dixon Professional Firefighters Have Endorsed Candidates in the Upcoming Election

What do you think of their endorsements?

Dixon Professional Firefighters (IAFF Local 4665) announced that they have endorsed the following candidates in the upcoming election: 

  • Mayor:  Jack Batchelor
  • City Council:  Steve Bird and Jerry Castanon Sr. 
  • “No on Measure N” campaign.

They explained their decision in the the following release: 

The issues that face the community and its citizens require resolve through true leadership and open minds.  Action needs to be taken in both a socially and fiscally responsible manner that addresses both the needs of the community as a whole and those who stand to protect and serve, preserve its beauty, and encourage its potential. 

The Dixon Professional Firefighters are proud to stand behind our endorsements as the candidates all possess strong ethics, leadership, and a willingness to listen to the needs of both the community and the employees of the city.  They believe in responsible growth, economic sustainability, and stand united against government waste and poor utilization of funds and resources during challenging economical times.  They believe in the potentials of not only making Dixon a draw for others from outside the community, but the idea of bringing Dixon residents outside their homes to share in their own community.  In doing so they value and understand the need for strong public safety, clean parks, and recreation opportunities. 

The Dixon Professional Firefighters are also proud to stand behind the “No on Measure N” campaign.  Measure N is fiscally irresponsible, creates greater bureaucracy, and is damaging to the means in which the city and city council conduct business.  In an already challenging economic state, Measure N unnecessarily attacks the taxpayer’s wallets and places a further economic burden on the city to create an “open government” that already strongly exists in Dixon.

Questions regarding the Dixon Professional Firefighters endorsements or questions about the organization can be directed to our website at http://www.dpfalocal4665.org or to the contact listed below.

Want to say something about this story? Leave a comment below or post a blog directly to Dixon Patch. Just click this link and you're ready to publish! Email me at justin.cox@patch.com if you have questions. 

Bil Paul September 21, 2012 at 06:23 PM
Well, it's no surprise that the firefighters would endorse a retired police officer for city councilman! But they didn't go into any detail about what makes Bird and Castanon superior to the other candidates. Or what makes Batchelor superior to Ceremello.
Devon Minnema September 21, 2012 at 08:34 PM
Batchelor will give the union everything it requests on a silver platter, whereas Ceremello will actually take a look at the budget before negotiations
Justin Cox (Editor) September 21, 2012 at 09:21 PM
Just a quick note: I initially had the Dixon Fire Department's image on this story. That was my mistake. I have since swapped in the Dixon Professional Firefighters image.
Mary September 21, 2012 at 10:49 PM
Jerry Castanon was endorsed because of his dedication to our city. Jerry listens to the people of Dixon. He will bring integrity to this council. Im proud of the Firefighters giving Jerry this endorsement because he truly deserves it. Our Firefighters are there when we need them. I believe Jerry will be there when we need him. Thanks Jerry for your ongoing support to our city. You got my vote!!
Younger Curmudgeon September 21, 2012 at 11:16 PM
Why would the Firefighters' Union Support Steve Bird over Ian Arnold when the latter's labor union connections and ties and devotion seem as strong if not stronger, and certainly reach a broader class of worker? I totally understand their endorsement of Mr. Castanon. But I am puzzled about Mr. Bird over Mr. Arnold? Is not Mr. Castanon himself supporting Mr. Arnold and vice versa? I would presume both vehemently oppose Measure N, as does Mr. Bird, and any reasonable candidate for city council?
Ian Arnold September 22, 2012 at 02:09 AM
Mr. Curmudgeon, I'm not angry with the firefighters. I truly understand their issues, as (I assume,) does Mr. Bird. Should I be elected to City Council, the phone will still work both ways, regardless of which candidate was endorsed. Our firefighters don't complain, in fact, they do an incredible job, but they must deal with a city with one fire station in a city that is bifurcated by a railroad track. We must have a second station so that citizens living southwest of the tracks have a reliable 911 option during a medical emergency. After meeting with the firefighters and their managers, I believe I understand the issues and I certainly won't hold their failure to endorse me against them.
Ian Arnold September 22, 2012 at 02:11 AM
I apologize, I failed to answer your unasked question: I'm unequivocally opposed to Measure N.
Kerry Jacobs September 22, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Ahh excuse me ! I know allot of the firefighters here in town and many of them feel the same way as I do with our union dues going to Democrats for re-election. Maybe there should be a list of names who support the listed candidates and measure N instead of embarrassing the entire department.
Jim Ernest September 22, 2012 at 06:14 PM
The Dixon Firefighters want to have a city government that runs smoothly and efficiently. They want a high level of protection for our city. They are doing a great job day after day. I think their opinion should carry some weight.
Greg Coppes September 22, 2012 at 11:49 PM
Then you support prop 32, it will make what you are requesting law.
The Great Libertarian September 23, 2012 at 07:29 AM
So this is where the Bad Old Boys hold court now. No, Jim, the Dixon Firefighters are only interested in protecting their salaries. Yes they do a great job everyday. So do most people. If you are simply interested in placing rubber stampers on the council who are more concerned about the city employees than the citizens, then indeed vote for any of the three union guys, Arnold, Bird, and Castanon. By the way, ever attended a planning commission meeting? Castanon never says a word. But he has no problem approaching the council to put in a process to benefit his union brothers. Figure it out for yourselves. A vote for the A, B, C's will put the city right back on the road to bankruptcy as these guys plus Batchelor never say no to those of their own. Vote Ceremello, Graska and Hickman in this election. We know who the government belongs to and it isn't the unions or those who are supposed to be serving its citizens. That is why we will never be endorsed by groups such as the firefighters.
Ted Hickman September 23, 2012 at 06:34 PM
In running for a seat on the Dixon City Council I have not officially sought endorsements or asked anyone for financial contributions. I am running alone and not with any other person. I have, and will ,respond to any or all groups and organizations that have asked me to meet with them and explain my viewpoints on local government...Like I did with the Dixon PFF Assoc. Unlike most of the other candidates I am not tied to, or obligated to any business or special interests. I can only say, knowing for sure, the Dixon PF ASSN's endorsements do not necessarily represent the view point of all of the firefighters...Like those who actually live in the city of Dixon. They obviously want the foxes to gaurd the hen house.
Dane Besneatte September 23, 2012 at 08:41 PM
Being on the city council, not up for re-election or running for another office I can watch the slugfest and recriminations fly about. The endorsements from one group or another are the votes of a majority of whichever group it may be. That is the American way right, the majority rules? From the posts here, it is so only if one receives the endorsement. Otherwise, it is demean and/or insult like Mike, the ‘great libertarian’…laughable… and Ted ‘It’s not the view of all of them’. What has any other candidate not endorsed by firefighters had to say? It is the same with supporters of Measure N. Supporters answer questions with lies, misrepresentations, distortions and obfuscation. To answer honestly would undermine supporter’s claims, such as the false allegation of “10 violations of the Brown Act”, which they fought so hard to keep in the ballot pamphlet. They have no evidence of even one such “violation” in the past 5 years. Wednesday they had the opportunity to prove up this falsehood and failed miserably. The front page of the Tribune today has what may be the first negative effect of this disastrous proposal. Just another ‘Bad Old Boys’ thing, right Mike? So the campaign goes on with several candidates, some worthy and some a disaster hoping wreak havoc on, and disrupt, the council’s functions. Vote carefully and vote NO on Measure N, the future of all of us is at stake.
Steve Steiert September 23, 2012 at 09:14 PM
Hey "Great Libertarian" In the spirit of "sunshine," how about telling everyone who you are. Are you afraid that the "shadow government" will pay you a visit in the night? Afraid the fire department won't respond to your 911 call? In the spirit of openness, come out in the light of day day and join a free exchange of ideas. The cyberspace public square awaits your identity.
Ian Arnold September 23, 2012 at 09:19 PM
I'm supportive of some type of open government ordinance. Measure N, however, isn't about open government. It's about allowing a very few to prevent those elected by the majority from doing their jobs. When asked what would be cut to pay for Measure N during the debate, proponent Terry Francke suggested the city may cut the library's hours to 15 minutes per day. That statement in and of itself is disturbing because--even if made in jest--it indicates a willingness to shut down services to the public in favor of bad law. Secondly, it clarifies the fact that the proponents don't understand Dixon. Dixon Public Library District is actually a completely different political subdivision and the City of Dixon has no authority to direct the internal operations of the Library. Again, this might have been a minor gaffe, except Measure N in three seperate areas directs the Library to store, maintain and loan specific files. In the grand scheme of things, this may be a minor issue, but it's certainly indicative of the fact that the proposed ordinance wasn't properly researched or thought through.
Nick Warren September 23, 2012 at 10:52 PM
The candidates listed above were selected by a live vote of the membership of the Dixon Professional Firefighters. I will not divulge the names of any member of the membership who was or who was not present at the meeting out of respect for their privacy. I will however state that out of a 17 member union, 14 were present. For each candidate selection, as well as the opposition to Measure “N”, all votes were 14-0. That said; if one of you knows one of the three members who were not present at the meeting that do not feel in line with the unanimous vote held at the meeting then consider yourself somehow gifted. Prior to the vote, meetings were conducted with each of the candidates that wished to meet with the membership. Most of the candidates accepted the offer including the ones that have represented themselves in responses to this article. It is not my position to allude to the views of each of the candidates as that should be conducted by their own campaign in a manner of their choosing. The candidates that DPFA has selected for endorsements were selected because we collectively feel that their views and ideas fall best in line with not only what is best for the citizens, but what is also best for those who serve the citizens on a daily basis.
Nick Warren September 23, 2012 at 10:53 PM
We feel that they represent the best interests of the community as a whole and that their ideas are not based on personal agenda or personal friendships. The candidates were chosen for their integrity and ethics, particularly in the manner that they will conduct themselves during meetings, towards the community, and amongst each other. They best represent the published City Council goals being: 1) Protect and Maintain Fiscal Sustainability. 2) Provide public services at a high level. 3) Promote economic development for Dixon. Most of all they approach their candidacy with passion and reverence as opposed to an “I have nothing to gain or lose” or “I don’t care” attitude.
Nick Warren September 23, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Public services are not being provided at a high level, but they are being performed at the highest level that can be at the time. It is by no means because of a lack of work ethic or responsibility of the employees of this city. All city employees are currently on a furlough program instituted by the city as a means to balance the budget. This has reduced services and/or the availability of service within the city. All city employees have taken this reduction including the fire department. It should be noted though, that the fire department took their furlough in the form of concessions as opposed to having hours off so as NOT to reduce services to the community. The fire department has taken reductions in salary, benefits, and other items consecutively over the past three contract periods. Many of these concessions were offered willingly by the Dixon Professional Firefighters as a means to preserve the city budget, not reduce services, and avoid layoffs. ALL city labor groups have done this as well to varying extent. Make no mistake; it is NOT the labor groups of this city that are causing budget problems. What is the cause is real estate issues, poor decisions based on personal agendas, and poor economic growth.
Nick Warren September 23, 2012 at 10:55 PM
Measure “N” now on the ballot and strongly backed by one of the candidates stands to cost you the taxpayer equally or more than it would to rescind the furloughs of all of the city workers and restore services back to normalcy. Currently it also stands to impede one of the best economic opportunities Dixon has had in several years. A personal agenda such as this (and this is just one example), coupled with an inability to work with others, with the community, and with city does not serve the Council goals in any fashion and is actually harmful to the citizens. The Dixon Professional Firefighters are a labor organization. It should naturally go without saying that we want the best for our membership that IS POSSIBLE. The function of any labor organization public or private is to stand for the salary, benefits, and working conditions of its membership. The firefighters are not asking for any candidate to give us everything we want, nor do we expect it.
Nick Warren September 23, 2012 at 10:56 PM
We believe in doing what is right by our community and existing in the realms of fiscal responsibility as should be evidenced by the many concessions already taken and having taken concessions in lieu of furlough time off. What we do want are members of council who are ethical, non-biased, and professional. The candor of the replies from some of the council candidates, notably the ones not hiding behind pen names in reply to this article should speak to the heart of the way that they conduct their relationships. Others, such as Ian Arnold, we thank for their professionalism and maturity despite not receiving an endorsement. We stand strong and collective behind our endorsements as they were unanimous. In saying that, we wish a strong and spirited campaign by all candidates in their race to November. Proudly signed by name, Nick Warren – Dixon Professional Firefighters - Vice President
C. Duncan September 25, 2012 at 08:10 PM
Nick, Thank you for taking the time and for writing such a thorough, articulate and professional response. Thank you even more for serving the citizens of Dixon in a highly dangerous and stressful profession. I think your group is to be commended for setting an example for the rest of us on how to prepare for an election and how to vote as informed, responsible citizens. You have done your homework. So have I. Reelect Mayor Jack Batchelor. Vote NO on Measure N. I have not yet decided which of the following three I am voting for: Steve Bird, Ian Arnold, Jerry Castanon. /S/ Cindy Duncan


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