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Pat Hume

At five weeks into his service as Sacramento County District 5 supervisor, Pat Hume spoke to the Herald about this new role.

District 5 encompasses more than 650 square miles and includes the Galt, Elk Grove, Rancho Cordova, and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta communities.

Hume won the District 5 seat in last November’s general election, and he was sworn into office on Jan. 10. He replaced Don Nottoli, who had represented District 5 since 1995.

Prior to becoming a county supervisor, Hume served on the Elk Grove Planning Commission and the Elk Grove City Council. He was Elk Grove’s longest-serving council member after he ended 16 years of work.

Hume noted that his service as a supervisor reminds him of his work on the council, but on a larger scale.

“Thus far, being a county supervisor is very similar to what I was doing as a City Council member, but more in every aspect — more geography, more constituency, more breadth and scope of the issues that I am fielding and dealing with on a daily basis,” he said.

Pondering his short time in office, Hume mentioned that it began with an unexpected situation: major storms, and severe flooding in several south county areas.

“That was an unexpected focus and priority,” he said. “I was able to meet with some of the landowners and farmers and ranchers, and folks with the reclamation district and some of our congressional delegation and other lawmakers, and trying to focus on recovery and a restoration.”

He added that he desires to build a better system that reduces the loss of life and destruction to property due to major storms.

“Maybe it’s time that we look at the whole system, and how the Cosumnes (River) flows and how it affects the Delta and everything, and just try and design it so that it functions a little better in these freak high-water events,” he said.

Among Hume’s campaign issues during his run for supervisor was homelessness, and he said that this issue continues to have his attention.

He noted that he was recently involved in the process of removing homeless campers from an unsafe location along railroad and light rail tracks.

“We were able to get that cleared out, and so that they could find a safer place,” he said.

Hume added that the county is “doing some good things” pertaining to improving mental health services.

He said that the county received grant funding to retrofit an outpatient crisis stabilization unit for young people who may be experiencing mental breakdowns or other types of mental health crises.

Hume mentioned that the outpatient unit is complemented by the current construction of an inpatient psychiatric health facility.

“So trying to recognize that there’s a lot of individual needs out there that need to be met in a different fashion than what our current emergency room model can handle,” he said.

Hume shared his general approach to his service as a county supervisor.

“It’s providing a high level of customer service to the residents of the county,” he said. “It’s trying to model a culture and a behavior within the organization that is upbeat and positive, forward-looking, and always mindful of continuous improvement.

“And it is questioning the status quo, when it appears that efforts aren’t being fruitful, and how we could do things differently and hopefully more efficiently to get better results.”

He also commended the camaraderie among the supervisors.

“It just has more of a collegial feel to it,” he said. “And so I think that resonates with staff, obviously, who pay close attention. But also, hopefully, it will resonate with the people in the constituency, that their elected officials can agree to disagree, but still get along and still be civil and friendly to one another.”

Hume mentioned that he is feeling optimistic about the direction of the county.

“I’m focused on this first term and the work ahead, and I feel really optimistic that it’s going to be a good couple of years for the county of Sacramento,” he said.