Current Job: Retired
Top 3 Priorities if Elected:
PROTECT OUR ENVIRONMENT AND ENVIRONMENTAL RESOURCES
Santa Cruz County, and the 5th Supervisorial District, is known worldwide for its diverse environmental resources. Our towering redwoods, our watershed and coastal ecosystems each represent precious interdependence on the health of one another. We are the current stewards of those resources and it is our job to make sure our portion of this earth is preserved, remains healthy and is passed along to the coming generations.
In order to do so, we need to recognize that our economy is dependent upon eco-tourism, coastal dependent agriculture, clean water and air, and sensible land use decisions. In order for us to be aggressive environmental champions, we need to continue to generate revenues from tourism and hospitality, promote visitation and use of our State and regional parks, continuously monitor the health of the San Lorenzo River and the Santa Cruz watershed, and do everything possible to stop polluting the Monterey Bay and ocean.
I support strict land use policies prohibiting building near sensitive habitats. I support the ban on single-use plastic bags. I continue to support the legislation I sponsored or voted for which has created the strongest environmental protection regulations in the nation. I want local government to do a much more serious job of planning for alternative transportation systems, including bicycle use and better water use limits and regulation, and protect our air quality in the San Lorenzo Valley in particular. I have taken a strong stand in support of CEQA, because it is under attack.
JOBS, BUSINESS, AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
I know we can begin making our local economy more robust by helping our current small-businesses grow, one job at a time. Our Buy Local campaign - which I championed since its inception - is working, and we are seeing results. Some new jobs are being created by our current shops and store owners. I have spoken with the Cabrillo College economic development specialists and suggested that we establish a local Economic Development and Curriculum Advisory Committee to help Cabrillo's Scotts Valley campus focus particularly on economic development options and opportunities. The San Lorenzo Valley will develop economic sustainability based on eco-tourism and small-business recovery, and I will be a strong supporter of increased marketing and visitor outreach strategies. I will work with Santa Cruz and Scotts Valley business promoters to support marketing and outreach strategies to attract new businesses, and more local, environmentally-friendly (green) jobs based on the educational levels of the workforce that is in place. And, wherever possible, I will continue to support public education, not only because it assures a higher quality of life for everyone in our region, but because 1 in 4 current citizens of our County rely exclusively or to some extent on ‘education' for employment and revenues.
NEIGHBORHOOD SAFETY, COMMUNITY SECURITY: FIRE, POLICE SHERIFF, & FIRST RESPONDERS
I understand the complexities of providing safety and security to our residents. We have endured massive floods, fires and earthquakes. We were once known as a center of heinous crimes.
Our public safety volunteers and professionals say that we are "one disaster away from a catastrophe" because we do not have adequate evacuation routes. I will not stop trying to address this until we find ways to improve routes to safety in the event we actually need them.
I will continue to use my knowledge of state and local funding formulas, and my contacts in state government to help our local fire, sheriff and first responders have adequate budgets, equipment and maintenance to ensure that these public protection agencies are adequately funded and coordinated. Improved roadways and roadway maintenance will enhance safety, convenience, and our economy.
We are now being required to house more convicted criminals in our local jail. This is new state law, but I will make my first priority assuring that YOUR homes and neighborhoods are safe and secure, and that our police, sheriff and firefighters concentrate on our community and security 24x7.