Representing El Cajon on the City Council
Here's what I saw as our top 2 needs in 2016:
1) Boost Our Public Safety
2) Address Homelessness.
How did we do?
- Boost Public Safety: Result = Added 4 new police positions, 4 new fire positions.
- Voted to update Police Dept in-vehicle terminals and radio/dispatch systems. Fire Department added a 2-man Squad vehicle to respond before having to send an engine = faster response, longer equipment life.
- Address Homelessness: Result = Sponsored a Housing Navigator position who has placed 95 people into housing at an average cost of $3,093. Voted for travel funds for reunification with friends/family outside the County, resulting in 84 people having been placed into housing at an average cost of just $337.
What are some of the other improvements we achieved in teamwork with community partners?
- A firefighter Wellness Program, including a pioneering therapy dog program.
- A new animal shelter, including surgical and rehab facilities for the first time.
- Continued pedestrian/ADA sidewalk improvements.
- Repaired and replaced sewer system pipes still in place from the 60’s.
- Funds for residents affected by COVID-19 for rental/utility assistance.
- Funds for food distribution for residents affected by layoffs/closures.
- Tougher penalties for retailers who sell tobacco to minors.
- A volunteer community cleanup group, hauling over 10,000 lbs of trash off the city's streets.
- Higher operations standards required for motel owners.
- Street resurfacing programs to ensure safe roads.
- Climate-friendly development plans for walkability, increased bike access, proximity to transit.
- Increased affordable housing units for military veterans, seniors, and low-income.
- A remodeled and reopened civic theater, "The Magnolia", off to a strong start.
- Community events such as America on Main Street, Hauntfest, July 4th Fireworks, Downtown Car Shows, Christmas Tree Lighting, "Dinner and a Concert" series.
- Over $2.4 million for CARES Act grants for small business support.
- A new mobile device application to report requests for service, receive notifications, and more.
Top 2 Needs for 2020 and Beyond:
While we have accomplished much, the work is never done. We must continue to put Public Safety as our #1 priority, to protect the citizens' safety and property. We also need improve the cleanliness of our city right-of-way (sidewalks, streets, parks, etc.) . This would provide a higher quality of life for all.
It's About Making Friends, Helping People
Since the start of my term in December, 2016, I've met so many good people and made many new friends. A friend once told me there were no strangers to him, just friends he hadn't met yet. Making friends is how you get things done. In the business world, we say, "People like to do business with people they know, like, and trust." I think that works as well in public service. The more people you seek to meet, the more you can get done for others. I hope you'll give me the opportunity to serve for another four years.