Saying that he hopes to give a "neighborhood focus" to next year's San Diego mayoral campaign, City Councilman John Hartley announced Friday that he plans to form an exploratory committee in the first step toward possibly entering the race.
Acknowledging that he probably would be an underdog, Hartley said he plans to officially form a mayoral exploratory organization Monday, becoming the third candidate to do so in the June, 1992, contest to succeed Mayor Maureen O'Connor, who has said that she does not intend to seek reelection.
The first-term councilman said he hopes to use the campaign to debate "neighborhood empowerment"--a major theme from his 1989 council race.
Communities should have a greater say over how tax revenue is spent and city services allocated within neighborhoods, Hartley said. Hartley also favors the decentralization of City Hall through the establishment of neighborhood city service centers.
Two other potential mayoral candidates, County Supervisor Susan Golding and financier Tom Carter, have already formed exploratory committees, and San Diego City Councilman Ron Roberts also is considered a likely 1992 mayoral candidate. Peter Navarro, chairman of the managed-growth group Prevent Los Angelization Now! has also been mentioned as a candidate.
Hartley, who helped lead the successful initiative for district-only council elections in 1988 and then upset Councilwoman Gloria McColl the following year, said his underdog status in the mayoral race would simply enable him to remind voters of his earlier uphill victories.