Merced County Times Newspaper
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What’s probably cemented in your mind is that the upcoming 2020 election season will be the most significant one of our lifetime, and that the future of America, as we know it, is at stake.

Murphy wants good things to happen with public safety, public works, city-sponsored sports



Many Atwater residents recognize the name Jim The Plumber because he’s been in countless homes and businesses to fix water and sewage issues. 

And then, there are the campaign signs. 

Yes, Jim The Plumber is also a political candidate.  

Actually, the candidate’s full name is James Murphy — a local plumbing contractor with a penchant for civic volunteerism. Murphy is currently running as a candidate for the District 3 seat on the Atwater City Council. 

“I got into the race because several former council members and city employees asked me to consider it. I had already decided not to earlier this year. I’ve been on multiple city oversight committees and commissions, and I’m on the board of directors for MERCO Credit Union, right now. It’s all volunteer stuff. I believe in giving back to my community. “

After serving on the Parks and Recreation Commission for a decade, as well as the Planning and Traffic panels, Murphy says he sees a need to be on the City Council to address a lot of the issues local residents are concerned about. 

He has three main objectives:

• Public Safety 

“I’m reluctantly supporting the Measure B one-cent tax measure,” he says. “I was originally against it, but now since they have made it a dedicated fund for the tax money, I have decided to support it. Initially, the [funding] was going into the General Fund and I was not in favor of that. 99 percent of the time with a new tax, I say ‘no way.’ But public safety is one of those things I will make an exception on — if it’s done correctly. 

• Public Works

“As a plumping contractor, I work with Public Works almost weekly and those guys bust their butts, and they are way understaffed and underfunded. And the waiting list for sidewalks and trees, and everything in the city is years long. And they really need some help.” 

• Kids Sports

“When my kids grew up they played Atwater youth soccer and baseball, and all that stuff, and since the pandemic it’s really been diminished. At one point in time, Atwater had the biggest youth sports participation per capita in the valley, and we are nowhere near that anymore.”

Finally, as Jim The Plumber, the candidate adds: “I think I have a real feel for what the everyday people in Atwater want and need, and I think I can accomplish that.”

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