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7 people vying for Fresno City Council District 3 seat

FRESNO, California - District 3 Fresno City Councilman Oliver Baines is termed out, and it's a crowded race of people vying to take his spot.

There are seven candidates running: Daren Miller, Craig Scharton, Tate Hill, Sean Sanchez, Miguel Arias, Larry Burrus, and Kimberly Tapscott-Munson.

For nearly three decades Daren Miller has shaped the minds of k-12 students, which is why education is at the heart of his platform.

"Low high school graduation rates, dealing with poverty, and homelessness those are some things that can be better mitigated by having a better relationship between the city and the educational institutions that are around," said Miller.

Craig Scharton is a former councilmeber of District 1, and self-proclaimed brain-child behind opening up Fulton Mall.

He wants to create unique revitalization plans for each neighborhood in the district.

"You got Tower District, you got Lowell, Cultural Arts District, downtown, Chinatown, Southwest Fresno, central, west Fresno: as you develop the character of each one of those parts, the entire district begins to take-off," said Scharton.

Tate Hill is the former president of the Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce. He currently manages a non-profit that financially helps small businesses.

Hill has a three point plan: first public safety and second neighborhood restoration.

"There is a huge challenge with our roads, our streets, our sidewalks within our historic neighborhoods," said Hill. "And third, pushing for a vibrant urban economy."

Sean Sanchez works in real-estate and property management. His number one goal is affordable housing.

"My platform is basically my name, Sean: safety, education, affordable housing, neighborhood safety and prosperity," said Sanchez.

Miguel Arias is the chief information officer for Fresno Unified School District, and a trustee for the State Center Community College District.

Arias wants to see a district where his 11 and 6-year-old can feel safe.

"Every neighborhood in the City of Fresno should be walkable by our kids, but we haven't dealt with some major issues in our city including our homeless population and our motel drive community," said Arias.

Real-Estate Broker and Contractor Larry Burrus helped bring the Food Maxx shopping center on Fresno Street to life.

Burrus wants to make the district a better place for youth.

"This district is neglected or deprived. I want a child to look out of their window and see success," said Burrus.

Community Advocate and retired Librarian Kimberly Tapscott-Munson is the only female in the race.

Her platform includes tackling homelessness and bringing investments into the community.

"A lot of people are surprised to know that we don't even has a dry cleaners in southwest Fresno, and we don't have any big box stores. So if I have to do any home improvements I have to go across town. We are in need of a lot of infrastructure improvements in District 3," said Tapscott-Munson.

The district has nearly 30,000 registered voters, and all of them will have their first opportunity to decide which one of the seven candidates they want to represent District 3.


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