Bobbie Singh-Allen joins race to challenge Steve Ly for Elk Grove Mayor
Elk Grove News, July 28, 2020
In a conversation with Elk Grove News and by her formal announcement this morning, Elk Grove Unified School District Trustee Bobbie Singh-Allen declared her candidacy for Elk Grove Mayor challenging Steve Ly in the November general election.
Singh-Allen, who has served on the EGUSD Board of Trustees since 2012, will challenge Ly, who is seeking his third two-year term as Elk Grove Mayor. Ly was first elected mayor in 2016 after winning a seat on the EGUSD Board of Trustees in 2012, where he served with Singh-Allen, and then the Elk Grove City Council representing District 4 in 2014.
In the last several weeks' Ly has been embroiled in an ongoing conflict with his former 2016 campaign manager Linda Vue who has accused the mayor's associates of making threats and harassment a charge which he has denied. Following Vue's accusations, several other women, including Singh-Allen, have disclosed incidents that they say reveal a similar pattern by Ly and his associates.
Singh-Allen said Ly and associates tried to block her appointment in 2012 to the Trustee Area 4 seat that she currently occupies. Earlier that same year, Ly had applied for another vacancy on the EGUSD Board of Trustees in a different area but was not selected.
Citing the bullying of one of her two children encountered in Elk Grove schools, Singh-Allen said that sort of behavior is unacceptable and motivated her to seek a seat on the school district board of trustees. She said it is time for the return of "good governance, humility, and respect to public service" in Elk Grove city government.
"Eight years later, we have a bully at City Hall and I am heeding the call of to step up and lead the effort to take back our city and put an end to threats, intimidation, and harassment," she said. "Steve Ly has used his position to try to silence critics and women in particular. His tactics have been well documented and now he is facing censure from his colleagues in the council."
The aftermath of the Ly-Vue conflict has expanded and has led to a volatile political environment with both sides in the battle making charges and counter-charges. Singh-Allen says the political climate created by Ly has taken members of the EGUSD, the Elk Grove City Council, and Cosumnes Community Services District away from dealing with more pressing issues facing the community stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Like you, I want great schools, parks, businesses, public safety, jobs, and a sense of community in Elk Grove. My campaign will focus on uniting Elk Grove," Singh-Allen said. "It will focus on being honest and on reflecting the values of all those from different parts of our community."
Singh-Allen also said the encouragement she received from an array of elected officials and community leaders helped convince her to enter the race. Among those endorsing her candidacy are Rep. Dr. Ami Bera, M.D., State Senator Dr. Richard Pan, M.D., Assemblymember Jim Cooper, State Controller Betty Yee, Sacramento City Councilmember Angelique Ashby, SMUD Director Nancy-Boi-Thompson, Natomas Unified School District Trustee Lisa Kaplan, Elk Grove Unified School District Trustees Nancy Chaires-Espinoza, Chet Madison and Dr. Crystal Martinez-Alire, Elk Grove Planning Commissioner Mackenzie Wieser, CADEM Vice Chair Alex Rooker, CADEM Secretary Jenny Bach, and Elk Grove small business owner and social justice advocate Sharie Wilson.
The endorsements for Singh-Allen received all have come in the last 24-hours and she said it is humbling experience to see the wellspring of support for her candidacy.
With Singh-Allen's entry into the race, there are now five candidates who have filed initial paperwork for the opportunity to challenge Ly. The others are Michelle Kile, Justin Brown, Glen Padayachee, and Brian Pastor.
Although the mayoral race could field up to six candidates as of today, the race for the seat is viewed as mostly a contest between Ly and Singh-Allen. The filing deadline is August 7.
"I was not planning to run," Singh-Allen noted. "This movement was never about me. But I must answer the call to serve."