County Executive Officer Mike Powers announced today that Henry Gonzales will be leaving his position as the County’s Agricultural Commissioner, one year in to his third four-year term. Gonzales has accepted the same position in his home county of Monterey.
“Agriculture is a critical component of our county’s economic vitality,” said Mike Powers, County Executive Officer. “Henry has worked productively with our local agricultural community and did a great job balancing enforcement with support of the industry’s needs. He has been a strong supporter in working to improve conditions for our county’s farmworkers.”
As the Agricultural Commissioner, Gonzales and his staff oversaw a $2 billion local agricultural economy. The office is responsible for pesticide use enforcement; pest detection, exclusion, eradication and management; fruit, vegetable, egg and nut standardization; nursery and seed inspection; and crop statistics.
Among his many accomplishments over nearly a decade of service to the county was the eradication of the Gypsy Moth in the Ojai Valley, an increase in Spanish-speaking field staff, and an increase in the number of inspector/biologists to provide more timely and complete service to the agricultural community.
“Henry is well-respected by his peers and in the industry,” said Powers. “He sits on a number of statewide and association committees dealing with farmworker safety and pesticide regulations. That experience has been of tremendous value here, and I’m sure the farmers and farmworkers of Monterey County will benefit from it as well.”
A recruitment to fill the position will begin shortly.
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