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Humboldt County now has a leadership position on the state’s top association that advocates for state and federal issues on behalf of California’s 58 counties. Fourth District Supervisor Virginia Bass last week was elected 2nd Vice President for the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) Board of Directors at the association’s 122nd Annual Meeting, held in Palm Springs, meaning the North Coast will now have a more prominent voice when it comes to seeking changes that affect California counties.
Traditionally, the 2nd Vice President moves into the vice presidency the following year, and then becomes president of CSAC the year after, which would allow Bass to lead this influential organization in 2019. Former Supervisor George J. Cole, also representing the 4th District, is the only other Humboldt County representative to have served as a CSAC officer, which he did in 1940 as president.
“Being from a rural county it’s more important now than ever for Humboldt County to have a seat at the table when it comes to addressing state and federal issues,” said Supervisor Bass. “At the same time I am committed to fighting as hard as I can to produce real results for all of California’s counties. This is a tremendous opportunity to meet face-to-face with leaders throughout the state and across the country to discuss our concerns, to learn about innovative ideas and practices happening in other places, and to bring those ideas back to Humboldt County. I am honored to have been chosen to represent our rural counties and counties across the state as a member of this incredible association.”
Bass’s election to this office puts Humboldt County in a particularly influential position among two important state-wide organizations. First District Supervisor Rex Bohn also serves as the 2nd Vice President for the Rural County Representatives of California, which is a 35-member strong service organization advocating on behalf of California’s rural counties. Together, Bass and Bohn occupy two of six seats atop these agencies at the same time, a first for Humboldt County.
Currently serving her second term as a member of the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Bass will serve as Board Chair in 2017. She also is a member of several Board-appointed committees in Humboldt County, including the Airline Recruitment Subcommittee, Redwood Region Economic Development Commission, Behavioral Health Board, Convention & Visitor’s Bureau and the Local Agency Formation Commission, among others. Prior to serving on the Board, Bass was the Mayor of the City of Eureka, a council member for the city and worked for more than 30 years in the private sector.
During her tenure as a county supervisor, Bass has played a leadership role in CSAC. She serves on the association’s Executive Committee and Board of Directors, co-chairs the Coastal Counties committee, vice-chair of Administration of Justice committee. Bass has also served as a workshop moderator of emerging issues workshops regarding homelessness and evidence-based results in public safety.
Supervisor Bass was elected to the 2nd Vice President position by county supervisors from throughout the state during a CSAC General Assembly on November 30. She was sworn in the following day by San Diego County Supervisor Greg Cox, who is currently serving as the 2nd Vice President for the National Association of Counties. CSAC’s constitution and bylaws mandate that each year the presidency rotate from an urban to suburban county, then to a rural county supervisor. Supervisor Bass represents rural counties.
Left to right: Fourth District Humboldt County Supervisor and CSAC 2nd Vice President Virginia Bass stands with newly elected CSAC President Keith Carson (Amador County), 1st Vice President Leticia Perez (Kern County) and outgoing President Richard Forster (Amador County) after being sworn in to their new positions as CSAC officers on Thursday, Dec. 1 in Palm Springs.