4 Compete for North Natomas Council Seat


The Natomas Buzz and Heritage Park Homeowners Association hosted a District 1 candidate forum April 26 at Heritage Park. A recording is also available on YouTube.

BY BRANDY TUZON BOYD
THE NATOMAS BUZZ | @natomasbuzz

For the first time in more than a decade north Natomas will have new representation on the Sacramento City Council.

Vice Mayor Angelique Ashby, the area’s current representative on the council, is not seeking re-election to run for State Senate. Currently, four candidates are vying for Ashby’s seat on the dais.

As a result of redistricting, District 1 includes the area of Natomas north of Arena Boulevard as well as parts of Robla and North Sacramento.

Robert Alvis

ROBERT ALVIS grew up in Antelope and later lived in Natomas with friends.

“…When my wife and I decided to move out of midtown, this was a natural fit for me,” said Alvis. “We were lucky enough to successfully navigate the housing market in 2021 and move into our new home.”

Alvis graduated from Center High School in Antelope and went on to attend American River, Sacramento City and Sacramento State colleges, where he studied journalism and coaching.

Alvis has worked as vice president and general manager at the Crest Theater since October 2019. He previously worked 15 years at Harlow’s.

“I started as a host at Harlow’s just by chance and worked my way to assistant general manager,” said Alvis, who said he plans to keep his post at the Crest if elected. “During that time, I fell in love with the hospitality and entertainment sectors, as I love meeting new people and hearing their stories.”

This is Alvis’s first run for public office, but said his job gives him the benefit of talking to a wide variety of people.

“I hear their concerns and share them,” he said. “Taxpayers don’t want their money being wasted. I’m running because I am one of those taxpayers and will never forget where the money comes from that we, as public servants, are trusted to spend wisely.”

If elected, Alvis vows to make sure taxpayers come first. He also plans to help those hoping to open new businesses and create more housing for the middle class.

“I’ve heard from too many hard-working people that they have given up on finding a home because of the price,” said Alvis. “We must increase the inventory of single-family homes in the area to make the dream of home ownership a reality for everyone.”

Lisa Kaplan

Candidate LISA KAPLAN has lived in north Natomas since 2001. Kaplan grew up in Oregon, earned her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Seattle University and her law degree from McGeorge School of Law.

“I love the work I do as both a small business attorney running my own law firm and as a school board member investing in our community and future,” said Kaplan, who was elected to the Natomas Unified School District board of trustees in 2001.

In 2010, Kaplan ran a campaign for city council but dropped out of the race and continued to serve on the school board. Now finishing her fifth term, she is running for city council to address challenges such as struggling business and unaffordable housing.

“We can do better, but we need strong leadership coupled with compassionate advocacy for what ’s right … That’s where I come in,” said Kaplan. “I love building coalitions of people who work together to solve problems.”

If elected to city council, Kaplan said she intends to continue to work at her firm — confident that she can continue to balance work, family and elected life.

Kaplan said her goals are to make Sacramento’s communities safer for children and families to live, work and play. She would also like to strengthen community policing, partner with local schools to increase extra-curricular opportunities, invest in local businesses, expand housing affordability and work with the county to get the unsheltered into housing and treatment programs

Kaplan said she’d like to “make Sacramento a place that has a thriving city, a hub of innovation, where families move to live because it is safe and affordable, where the economy is supportive of small and big businesses, while also addressing the unhoused community in an equitable and human way.”

Alyssa Lozano

Candidate ALYSSA LOZANO said she has lived in District 1 her entire life, growing up in the Valley View Acres neighborhood where she also raised her two sons.

“We now live in Natomas Park,” Lozano said. “I love Natomas—this is and will always be home for me.”

According to Lozano’s LinkedIn profile, she studied business, management and marketing at American River College. Lozano said she has worked in the real estate industry for more than 20 years, is a licensed Realtor and operates A.L.L. Real Estate.

“Home ownership is one pathway for families to build generational wealth. That’s part of the reason why I am running for city council; the costs of home ownership continue to rise, and people are being priced out of communities where they have lived, worked, and played for generations,” said Lozano. “It’s time for real leadership and policies to lower the cost of homebuilding to ensure people have access to housing at affordable rates. We talk about serving people of color, but home ownership rates for black and brown people remains relatively low.”

Lozano, who currently serves as president of the Natomas Chamber of Commerce, has not run for public office previously. If elected, she said she plans to continue to work as a Realtor.

“I’ve spent my lifetime volunteering, working within the community, and serving the public,” said Lozano. “As a working mother, I know firsthand the rigors of having to balance a challenging schedule and will take that experience directly to City Hall.”

Lozano’s priorities if elected include job creation, public safety and affordable housing. She also hopes to tackle the city’s homelessness crisis.

“It’s going to take the cooperation of each councilmember and I look forward to leading that discussion,” she said.

Nate Pelczar

Candidate NATE PELCZAR grew up in Michigan and later moved to south Natomas from Davis in 2009.

“That’s when I fell in love with the Natomas community,” said Pelczar. “My husband Dave and I have lived in the Westlake community since 2010 with our two rescue dogs, Gaia and Zeus.”

Pelczar earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in International Business Administration from Northwood University and a Master of Public Affairs degree from Indiana University. Currently, he helps run the California Product Stewardship Council, a small environmental nonprofit which focuses on state and local environmental policy, consumer education and saving taxpayers money.

“My role in helping state and local governments make changes that allow them to save money while improving our environment brings me joy and gives me an incredible sense of accomplishment,” said Pelczar.

Pelczar served on the Natomas Unified School District’s Citizen’s Bond Oversight Committee from 2015 to 2019 and has been a Stonewall Foundation of Greater Sacramento board member since 2019. In 2018, Pelczar ran an unsuccessful bid for a seat on the Sacramento County Office of Education board of trustees.

“Public service is my motivating factor in this race,” said Pelczar, adding he plans to work full time as a city council member if elected. “ My desire to serve the citizens of District 1 is a responsibility that I take seriously. I will give it my full attention.”

As a council member, Pelczar said he’d like to build on recent economic development, improve public safety and develop more high-quality housing. He also hopes to “help the unhoused” citywide.

“I will work to find solutions in Sacramento that provide the unhoused with stable and permanent housing solutions that include wrap-around services to address the individual needs of folks that are experiencing homelessness,” said Pelczar.

The California state primary election is June 7. If no single candidate gets 51% or more of the votes cast, the top two vote getters will be on the ballot for a runoff in November.

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