A Fair share for West Anaheim
For too long, West Anaheim has been left last in line for attention from City Hall. As your City Council Member, I'll fight to make sure our fair share of the budget goes to improving our quality of life in West Anaheim. As Star Wars Land at the Disneyland Resort begins operations and the resort area sees increased hotel stays, I'll ensure that tax revenues come home to West Anaheim – Anaheim is our neighborhoods, and I'll make sure the City Council remembers that.
Despite years of promises, statements of principle, and haphazard policy initiatives, homelessness continues to grow in our neighborhoods. We need to be compassionate, but firm, in attacking the root causes of homelessness and making our neighborhoods safe for all of our residents. As your Council Member, I will:
Reassess Anaheim's participation in the Orange County Continuum of Care (COC). For years, the City of Anaheim has contributed to the COC in good faith, in the hope that the program would make progress. Despite some early successes, it is clear that the COC has not meaningfully addressed homelessness in Anaheim. If the COC can't effectively provide services that help homeless individuals, I will fight for the City to leave the COC and work with the Anaheim business community to fully abate homelessness in Anaheim's parks and neighborhoods. No human being should feel they have no choice but to sleep on road medians and in railroad right-of-ways.
Create a real Neighborhood Improvement Fund, which will allow us to implement targeted, proactive programs to alleviate homelessness.
Revitalizing West Anaheim neighborhoods
We deserve the best – the best city services, parks and public facilities, streetscapes, and neighborhood retail establishments. West Anaheim residents are equal partners in this city, and we deserve to have our city government give us the same care, attention, and results that other parts of the city receive. As your Council Member, I will:
Fully implement the Beach Boulevard Specific Plan. Beach Boulevard is a vital West Anaheim economic artery, and nearby neighborhoods in District 2 deserve to benefit from the long-awaited promises of the Specific Plan. I will advocate to fully implement the plan and bring West Anaheim the improved traffic flow, streetscapes, and safety investments we deserve.
Higher-quality retail, dining, and entertainment options. We work hard to provide for our families, and while other parts of Anaheim have seen growth, West Anaheim has not. Every minute spent in traffic on the way to a good grocery store or restaurant is a minute not spent with our loved ones. I will fight to ensure that any new development meets our community's standards for quality and gives residents new, higher-quality shopping options so we can keep our shopping dollars in Anaheim. Wouldn't it be great to be able to drive just down the street to a Trader Joe's? I think so.
Parks and recreation facilities. Our city's open and recreational spaces are regional gems that make it easier for us to live and play in this great city. But too often, they fall into disrepair. Our children and families deserve to be able to play and relax in spaces that reflect the priority we place on them, and parks and other public facilities should be of equal quality in every neighborhood. No more unpainted signs at Modjeska Park, or dry, dusty fields and restrooms without doors at Maxwell Park. Such conditions are unacceptable in a city as rich with resources as we are. Any reinvestment in our parks and recreation facilities should include study of accessible exercise equipment, dog parks, and other useful amenities that let our residents stay in Anaheim for their recreation needs.
By the numbers, West Anaheim is a safer place to live than it was ten years ago, but I know from conversations with my neighbors that it's sometimes difficult to feel that way. We need to capitalize on the progress we've made and fully commit to a safe Anaheim. On the City Council, I will:
Increase the Anaheim Police Department's sworn force by 25 police officers by 2022, bringing the total sworn force to over 430 officers. These will be funded without additional taxes by fully utilizing projected growth in general fund revenues. Our police officers have made clear that we need to invest in the specialized units, such as community policing and gang intervention, that prevent crime before it happens. As your representative on the City Council, I will listen to the experts and fight to invest in programs that work and make us safer. As we expand our patrol and intervention resources on the ground, I will work with the Police Department to reduce their dependence on aerial surveillance so our families can sleep soundly at night without police helicopters buzzing overhead.
Bring our Fire Department back to full strength. Over and over again, we hear from our firefighters about short-staffing and its growing negative impact on emergency response times and morale. The dangers of a lack of resources were made clear this past fall, when dozens of structures were needlessly damaged or destroyed in part because of bureaucratic mishaps within the Orange County Fire Authority. This will not happen in Anaheim. We need to get our fire and rescue force back to the full strength it had before the 2008 recession. West Anaheim can’t afford anything less.