Monica Kay Villa (64) plans to run for mayor of Merced for the second time.

Monica, originally from Atwater graduated at Atwater High School in 1973. Monica would then go on to briefly attend Merced College. Monica would then have several jobs as a cocktail waitress and some fast-food eateries.

Unfortunately, Monica’s life would change forever when her 25-year-old son Jonathon Conlee committed suicide by train. “He suffered from depression,” Monica said. She stopped working shortly after his death in 2006.

Monica would then move to a Merced homeless encampment by Black Rascal Creek and Santa Fe in 2010.

Monica tells Merced Daily she’s been advocating for the homeless ever since.

Monica actively helps out Merced’s homeless. “I’m the source homeless people go to, to get food and supplies. I need to be out here to help the homeless,” said Monica.

Merced Daily: Do you like the lifestyle of being homeless?

Monica: Honey!! I’m 64, I would love to have a house. I had a voucher, but the difficulty is the landlords, property owners weren’t up to code, so they’re not going to let me rent.

Merced Daily: Do you panhandle?

Monica: No, but panhandling is our right!

Merced Daily:Do you believe some people are bused here?

Monica: No, absolutely not, those rumors aren’t true.

Merced Daily: Whats your main goal running for mayor of Merced?

Monica:“I’m running on affordable housing”, said Monica. “I’m really big on affordable housing.”

Monica regularly attends the Merced City council meetings and donates her time at a local church by Stephen Leonard Park in Merced.