Ally Sen. Romero announces Salt Lake County mayoral bid

With a history of community involvement, Sen. Ross Romero, D-Salt Lake City, advocates for inclusiveness, compassion in government and fiscal responsibility. Facing an impending redistricting that would pit him against a fellow Democrat, Romero said he reviewed his options and decided to make a bid for Salt Lake County Mayor. A native of Salt Lake County, he said his business, political and life experiences will help him find the solutions to the issues the area will be facing in the near future. The current mayor, Democrat Peter Corroon, is planning not to run in 2012.

Romero has long been an advocate for the queer community and has sponsored bills allowing for second-parent adoption, and has supported the non-discrimination ordinances protecting against bias based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

“I think inclusion of all citizens should be paramount for any business, government or community. We need to look at the issues all our citizens are facing and I will continue to be a strong supporter of Utah’s LGBT community as Salt Lake County mayor,” Romero said.

Romero said he is a proud partisan Democrat and stands firm with his Utah party members to offer logical and real-life solutions for problems Utah is facing. When the 2011 legislative session ended, Romero said Senate President Michael Waddoups, R-West Jordan, told him a Democratic district would likely be eliminated.

“As the Senate minority leader, I was faced with a problem; I had to come up with a way to address the issue of possibly two incumbents running against each other,” Romero said. “But the more I looked into running for Salt Lake County mayor, the more I felt like it was where I could affect the most change and have the biggest impact.”

Currently, Romero’s district represents around 100,000 people, whereas Salt Lake County has about 1 million residents. The nature of unincorporated Salt Lake County is up for debate in the next few years, and townships such as Millcreek and Magna, will define what their organizational bodies look like, Romero said.

“We will be shaping the very nature of the county government; what services are offered and what it looks like,” he said.

Salt Lake County Democratic Chairwoman Mary Bishop said she couldn’t be happier with Romero’s candidacy for mayor.

“I just love him. He’s such a good representative. He’s always got the best interest of the people in mind,” Bishop said. “I have so enjoyed working with him and look forward to many more years of working together.”

Romero has a long history of volunteerism and political involvement. Along with serving the House of Representatives and later the Senate, Romero served on the board of the Utah Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and as a Salt Shaker for the Salt Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. He was formerly a member of the Young Alumni Board at the University of Utah.

Romero grew up on the west side of the county and attended school on the east side, where his mother taught school for nearly 30 years. The experience of participating in all areas of the county helps him connect to a wide variety of issues and concerns, Romero said.

“I couldn’t be who I am and not be supportive of all of Salt Lake County’s diversity. Everyone should feel welcome here. There’s a place for everybody,” Romero said.

For more information about how to be involved in the campaign, go to VoteRossRomero.com.

Seth Bracken

Seth Bracken is the editor of QSaltLake

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