Former Modesto Councilwoman Janice Keating is making a run for the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors.
Keating, 51, said she will file her papers for the District 4 seat before a deadline next week. The district includes most of the city of Modesto and Del Rio.
Incumbent Dick Monteith is not seeking another term, which extends the filing period from Friday to Wednesday. The potential four-way race includes state senator Tom Berryhill, who is terming out this year and has a $75,000 campaign fund, and Frank Damrell III, a field representative for state senator Cathleen Galgiani of Stockton.
Bret De St Jeor has filed some paperwork but said Wednesday he's undecided about entering the race.
Keating said she’s running as the county deals with a number of timely issues that match her political experience and skill set.
One concern is homelessness. Keating noted that she spearheaded an effort to create the Salvation Army shelter in Modesto 14 years ago.
“Homelessness is a gigantic issue right now,” Keating said. “It is far more complicated than just putting a roof over someone’s head temporarily or permanently.”
Keating said she does not have a firm opinion yet on a proposed low-barrier shelter on property behind the Salvation Army Berberian shelter at South Ninth and D streets. A Salvation Army official said recently that the Berberian Center and Gospel Mission are severely underfunded and is concerned that that could worsen if the low-barrier shelter draws away funding and other support.
Keating said a low-barrier shelter won't reduce homelessness if other shelter services are cut.
The rising cost of housing in Modesto is another problem that deserves attention, Keating said. “We have to do something to deal with the lack of affordable housing,” she said.
A shortage of apartments is forcing rental costs so high that young families can’t save for a down payment on a home.
Keating added that jobs would be another priority if she is elected.
The Modesto resident served on the City Council from 2002 through 2009. She ran for the same county board seat in 2006, losing to Monteith, a former state senator, by only 16 votes out of more than 23,000 cast.
Keating made an unsuccessful bid for a state Assembly seat in 2010. She is a lifetime member of the Stanislaus Taxpayers Association and is executive director of the Republican Central Committee of Stanislaus County.
Supervisor Terry Withrow's seat is also up for election on the June primary ballot. Withrow faces a challenge by Salida resident Katherine Borges, who has served on the county Planning Commission and Salida Municipal Advisory Council.
The top two vote-getters in the District 4 contest will advance to a runoff in November if a single candidate does not capture more than 50 percent of the vote.