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Lakewood City Councilmember Pete Roybal’s eight-year term has come to an end. On Nov. 5, Anita Springsteen was elected to fill his seat. She will be sworn in on Nov. 25.
We spoke to Roybal about his time on Lakewood City Council representing Ward 3 — a centrally located portion of the city that includes Belmar. Here is what he had to say.
When you look back at your time on City Council, what will you remember the most?
My daughter said it the best. “Look in the mirror and ask yourself who is responsible for all our community needs?” This was a hard lesson to learn. We the people have taken back our community in Ward 3.
We have created the biggest food bank in the city of Lakewood for eight years strong. Our 50-year-old infrastructure continues to be updated such as our curbs, sidewalks, street, sewer lines, gas lines, water lines and street lights. Our parks, right of ways and the main state roads have also been updated.
We were able to support our homeless military veterans by creating the first City of Lakewood Veterans Fair. We found a World War II memorial from 1946 on 10th and Wadsworth. We rededicated and relocated it to the new Lakewood High School on 8th and Kipling.
What are your hopes for the city going forward?
The people have spoken loud and clear that they want controlled growth. I would encourage our council to implement the Lakewood Strategic Growth Initiative as soon as possible. I would also encourage the council to have the effective date as of the election date.
What do you hope resident will remember from your time on council?
House calls. I am a person that is visual and likes to see first-hand what’s going on. As a representative to our community, I am the go-to between our community and the city of Lakewood. Thank you for the opportunity to be able to help our citizens of Lakewood.
What plans do you have now that your time on council is up?
Take some time off and then write another chapter in my family book.
What’s the biggest change in the community you’ve seen?
We have the most diverse population in our city and uniting all our folks is very important. Our picnics started eight years ago at Lasley Park had around 20 people. This year in Lasley Park, it’s grown to over 325 people.
We have so much more to accomplish in our community like fighting crime, gangs, drugs and so on.
This interview was edited for clarity.
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