In their last gathering before the election, four of the seven Hesperia City Council candidates spoke at the Hesperia Chamber of Commerce's monthly luncheon.


Candidates Russ Blewett, Paul Bosacki, Mark Kirk and Mayor Mike Leonard answered questions Monday at the chamber's monthly meeting at Hesperia Senior Campus.


Each of the four in attendance answered four questions posed by moderator Tim Altier.


"I don't think anybody can reverse the problem right now," Leonard said, when asked about how the city council might reverse the wave of foreclosures in the city. "It's just going to have to work itself out."


"If we don't work together," with other municipalities, Kirk said, "This problem is going to outpace us very, very quickly."


The city needs to "stay the course and keep paving these roads," said Bosacki, because a better infrastructure would make houses easier to sell and for a higher value.


"We want good, substantial buyers in those houses," Blewett said, pointing to his plan to help residents get home loans.


"We need to increase people's opportunities to shop in Hesperia," Kirk said, when asked about how the council could encourage residents to shop in the city. "There need to be extra points [for city contractors] spent on shopping locally."


"The only way we can shop local is if we keep bringing in businesses we need," Leonard said, noting the recent openings of Super Target and Wood Grill Buffet.


The planned Ranchero Road Underpass and the Ranchero interchange on Interstate 15 are crucial to attracting new jobs, said Bosacki: "That's going to be the new Bear Valley Road in two years."


"There's a direct correlation between education and high-paying jobs," Kirk said, saying the city needs to attract colleges to the city.


"We need to get this housing program," Blewett said, saying his plan would put Hesperians in the construction industry back to work. "More than anything else, it will recycle money through our community."


Candidates Dennis Arquette, Scott Bennett and Rochelle Garner did not attend Monday's chamber meeting.


Beau Yarbrough can be reached at 956-7108 or at beau@hesperiastar.com.