By Miriam Raftery
Photo, left to right: Humbert Cabrera, Stephanie Harper, Juan Carlos "Charlie" Mercado, Michelle Metschel, and Martin Van Dinteren.
October 10, 2020 (El Cajon) – Housing and homelessness, racial relations, public safety, attracting businesses, the future of Parkway Plaza and the performing arts center were among the hot topics discussed at a virtual forum for five of the six candidates running for the El Cajon City Council District 2 seat, to represent the north central portion of the city.
Candidates also addressed controversies in the race, including a fake website set up to mislead voters about one candidate and residency questions raised regarding another.
The five candidates who participated are Humbert Cabrera, a planning commissioner and business owner, Stephanie Harper, a residential relief worker, Juan Carlos “Charlie” Mercado, an Iraq war veteran and veterans’ advocate, Michelle Metschel, a defense industry administrator, and Martin Van Dinteren, a general contractor and former city building inspector. (Update: View ECM's Zoom interview with Letitia Dickerson, the sixth candidate, who missed the forum due to an incorrect e-mail address provided by the city.)
Scroll down for highlights of our candidates forum, or click here to view video of the full forum.