EL CENTRO â€“ The board of Supervisors held a special meeting Friday, January 3, at 8:00 a.m. to reorganize the board for 2014.
Outgoing Chairman Ray Castillo held elections where District 1 member, John Renison, was elected Chairman of the Board and Ryan Kelley, District 4, was elected Vice-Chairman.
Castillo thanked all the departments for their hard work and reminisced on his tenure as a board member. He recalled coming into office in 2011 and the work the planning commission was doing back then.
â€œI can remember my first year in 2011, they were up to their neck in planning,â€Â Castillo said. â€œThe next several years, planning with renewables continued and finally, this year, many of those planned projects came to fruitation. Now we have over 1000 people working in solar.â€
He said his focus as chairman dwelt on expanding the economy, job creation and therefore expanding the tax base.Â Castillo felt that 2013 was a good year for the county and many of his goals were met.
His disappointments were the two landfills, Mesquite Lake and the Burrtec, that did not materialize. â€œThe tipping fees would have been incredible, but there is still a chance they will go forward.â€
A representative from California Senator Juan Vargasâ€™ office presented a plaque of recognition to outgoing Chairman Castillo.
Newly elected Chairman of the Board, John Renison, laid out his priorities, his passion for fixing county roads, job creation, a â€˜call center’ in Calexico or the Valley, improving the two Calexico Ports of Entry and working closer with the Farm Bureau by attending their monthly meetings.
Michael Kelley finished the meeting saying that these past 8 years, the board has accomplished more than at any other time in their history. â€œI would defend the Imperial County anywhere in the world,â€ Kelley said. â€œEveryone of us has been born and raised here. We all work very hard for the future of our valley.â€