Lourin Hubbard says improved housing and the environment are his path to become the next Fresno mayor.
The state water manager officially kicked off his campaign Wednesday. He filed paperwork with the city last November.
“For too long people that look like me and grew up like me have been forgotten in this amazing city we call home,” Hubbard, who is Black, said in a news release. “Not forgotten by our neighbors but forgotten by an establishment system of career politicians that has led many of us to believe there isn’t another option, that we can’t expect more, and that we can’t do more. I’m running to change that because the people of this city cannot afford another four years of the current Mayor.”
Hubbard, a 34-year-old Democrat, is running against incumbent Jerry Dyer. So far, they are the only two who have filed.
Dyer, a 63-year-old Republican, said his record as mayor “speaks for itself.”
“Fresno has been named as having the second-strongest post-pandemic recovery in the United States. And that in 2022, Fresno had the fastest-growing wage in the United States. I think all of that speaks volumes in terms of the progress we’re making as a city,” Dyer said.
The primary is March 5, 2024. If no candidate wins a majority of votes, the top two advance to a November 2024 runoff election.
Both men live in north Fresno.
Homelessness a Top Issue
Both Hubbard and Dyer listed homelessness as one of their top issues.
“The current administration is ignoring the plight of our fellow citizens living on the streets. As Mayor, I will work to provide housing and services to those who are homeless and to prevent others from becoming homeless,” Hubbard said.
Dyer highlighted his efforts.
“(In) my first two years, we’ve removed over 1,700 homeless people from the streets, including 650 from our freeways. And those folks were placed into emergency shelter, receive services, and 76% of those transitioned into permanent housing are back with their families,” Dyer said.
Affordable housing is also an issue both men cited.
Hubbard said he plans to make Fresno “the most competitive, most attractive city” for affordable housing, mental health services, and job training programs.
Dyer said 700 affordable housing units will come on line this year, more than the last five years combined.
The incumbent mayor also touted his Beautify Fresno volunteer cleanup program and the hiring of more police and firefighters.
Hubbard also said that he wants to improve the city’s air and water.
The Money Game
Dyer reported raising $143,585 in the calendar year 2022. He has more than $160,000 cash on hand.
“I don’t know how much money we’re going to need to raise. The goal is by June 30th to have at least $500,000 in the bank. And we have a strategy to make that happen,” Dyer said.
Hubbard has not announced any mayoral fundraising. He did raise a shade under $100,000 when he ran for Congress in a 2022 special election. While he advanced to a runoff election, he lost to Tulare Republican Connie Conway.
Dyer wrapped up the 2020 mayoral election in the primary with 52% of the vote, avoiding a runoff. He raised nearly $1 million.
A new law that went into effect this year, SB 1439, could limit sources contributing to Dyer. The law restricts contributions at $250 from those who may have business in front of the city’s elected leaders.
“It will definitely have some level of impact,” Dyer said.