What happens when a civil engineer has his eye on a city council seat? You get Rick Morsch — a native Californian and nine-year Lake Elsinore resident — who has big ideas on how to work out the smallest of details in re-making Lake Elsinore into the city many feel it can be.
“When I first moved here, I saw what everybody else saw when they first arrived — a lot of potential. We have the lake, the parks and the beautiful views,” said Morsch.
In Lake Elsinore, four seats, including three city council and one city treasurer are up for election.
Of the nine candidates campaigning for the seats, three are incumbents.
Seeing a steady foundation from which to build, Morsch decided to get involved. After attending countless city council and planning commission meetings, Morsch’s plan to both learn about the city’s inner-workings and to speak up paid off with an appointment as the Planning Commission Chairman in 2010.
“I enjoyed my time in that role and now I want to take it to a higher level. A lot of opportunities are passing us by that I want to take advantage of,” Morsch said.
Among those opportunities is the notion of expanding business in Lake Elsinore by growing the arts.
“We have some much cultural and historical significance in Lake Elsinore. By developing our cultural resources, we can revitalize the business community. We don’t want people to have to commute. We want people to find jobs here,” Morsch said.
The Lucas Oil Motocross Park, the recently installed boat launch and efforts to rid the city of unsightly trash and graffiti are all good signs of moving forward, he added.
“We have to get the word out that Lake Elsinore is (becoming) a new city,” Morsch said, adding that realistic goals — both short and long term — are a necessary part of the overall plan to revitalize the region.
“All sectors, including residents need to be involved in that plan,” he said. “We can’t stand still; we have to move forward. But it has to be responsible growth. We have to do it right. The community must work together.’
Along with infusing a thriving arts element that will add spark to the city, Morsch said he wants to improve storefronts, protect historic structures and preserve the “charm of Main Street” so that residents wishing to wander the streets of Lake Elsinore after a Storm game will find plenty unique spots to visit.
“It’s hard to put into words the passion I feel for this community.”
To learn more, visit www.rickmorsch.org.
Leading up to the November elections, SWRNN.com will run a series of candidate profiles describing each potential contender for this year’s open City Council seats. Stay tuned for continued Election 2012 coverage.
Kerri S. Mabee can be reached at email@example.com. Follow me on Twitter @kerrimabee.