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Auburn Councilman ponders 2012

Nesbitt looks toward a seat in the Assembly
By: MELODY STONE
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Keith Nesbitt said he is fairly committed to running for the 4th District state Assembly seat in 2012. “I think it would be nice if someone from this area represented this district,” the current city councilman and Auburn resident said. Republican Ted Gaines, R- Roseville, currently holds the seat. “I think it’s a great time for a moderate Republican to be in this seat,” Nesbitt said. In 2012 Gaines will be termed out of office and Nesbitt is forming an exploratory committee to determine what’s necessary to run. From working on the City Council Nesbitt saw firsthand the trickle-down effect of the state’s budget crisis. He said he wants to privatize a lot of the things government is doing and take a serious look at waste in the education system. “Those are going to be my ideas I want to push through,” Nesbitt said. Nesbitt used to own a mortgage company. But after his wife died he stopped writing loans and started doing things he liked better, like public service. “I stopped doing loans a little over a year ago because I learned how short life was and how little I enjoyed what I was doing,” Nesbitt said. “At the state level you get paid more like a full-time salary,” Nesbitt said. “If I can make a reasonable wage I can work 60 hours a week without worrying about making money elsewhere.” Gaines’ Chief of Staff Steve Davey said representing the 4th District of California is a challenge because of its size. The district stretches from East Sacramento all the way to the Lake Tahoe region, encompassing urban, suburban and rural communities. This may change with redistricting in late 2011. “For Assemblyman Gaines, he loves his job. It’s a great honor to serve the 4th District and the state Assembly, but California is facing immense challenges, challenges we haven’t faced in decades,” Davey said. “Hopefully the person who succeeds him in 2012 is energetic and eager to come to the Capitol and work hard to find solutions for the 4th District and for California.” Nesbitt isn’t the only local name coming up during talks of the 2012 Assembly race. Auburn City Councilman Kevin Hanley said he’s not committed to running for Assembly in 2012, but he’s not ruling it out, either. Right now he’s just focused on the 2010 City Council race and winning reelection. “I’ve worked well with Keith and I have high respect for him,” Hanley said. “I would not discourage anybody who wants to run for any office.” Nesbitt said if he does indeed run he will be ready for the job, if elected. “The bottom line is — what’s prepared me (for the Assembly) is six years of listening to my constituents and trying to vote on their concerns instead of what saves my job,” he said.