The fourth-largest city in Monterey County and the setting for the novel Of Mice and Men, Soledad followed the same trajectory as many locales in Steinbeck Country. First came the missionaries, then the ranchers, the wheat farmers, and the dairy workers. In 1921, when the City of Soledad incorporated, the latest thing was row crops—until the 1940s, when the California Department of Corrections built the Soledad Training Facility. That sector of the economy expanded in 1996 with the creation of the Salinas Valley State Prison. But with the presence of such companies as Dole Fresh Vegetables and Taylor Farms, agriculture is still going strong.

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City Council

The five-member Soledad City Council is made up of four councilmembers and a mayor, all of whom are elected at large. Meetings take place the first Wednesday of the month and are open to the public.

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Salinas Valley Tribune logo From Salinas Valley Tribune...

06/14/2024
Image for display with article titled Banuelos Joins Soledad City Council

Soledad’s newest councilmember, Eva Banuelos, was sworn in during the June 5 council meeting.

Salinas Valley Tribune logo From Salinas Valley Tribune...

04/25/2024
Image for display with article titled Military Ordnance Found in Soledad Prompts Evacuation, Bomb Squad Response

Officers from the Soledad Police Department were responding to a call for service on April 15 when they were notified of a potential threat to the community — a possible bomb in the bed of a nearby truck.

Monterey County Weekly logo From Monterey County Weekly...

04/24/2024
Image for display with article titled Soledad City Council Will Decide How to Proceed With District Elections After a Referendum.

Soledad residents worked for months to bring a referendum to the ballot and motivate voters to reject a five-district map the City Council selected last year.

Salinas Valley Tribune logo From Salinas Valley Tribune...

04/03/2024
Image for display with article titled City of Soledad Buys 4.61 Acres for Construction of Affordable Rental Units

Soledad City Council has authorized the purchase of 4.61 acres of property located at 540 Gabilan Drive to facilitate the construction of about 100 affordable rental units.

Monterey County Weekly logo From Monterey County Weekly...

03/28/2024
Image for display with article titled Another Long-Standing Soledad Councilmember Resigns.

On March 26, Soledad city employees received an email announcing Councilmember Ben Jimenez Jr.’s resignation, a little less than a year before the end of his term. He is the second councilmember to resign in less than six months.

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