As a City Council person, and, now, as a candidate vying to continue serving the residents of Grand Terrace, my focus remains exclusively on efforts to improve the lives of our city's residents. In the coming two years, and continuing well into our future, the following areas will receive my utmost attention:
1. Economic Growth
My strength for the past 35 years has been in working and gaining a very unique experience at the highest levels of government in the field of economic development. Economic Development, executed at the highest level, provides communities with significant growth in commerce, and in its industries, for the betterment of the community.
As stated in my Candidate's Statement.... "I have always viewed economic development in the broadest term possible. I believe this perspective embraces the spirit of the City's 2030 Vision."
Economic growth depends on many factors including ..... the "will" of its leaders to take bold initiatives, and make judicious use of resources.
Examples of signature projects I led in other communities include, but are not limited to, California’s first SuperTarget (175,000 s.f., and part of a larger 550,000 s.f., shopping center); a 1.37 million square foot distribution facility that created 1100 jobs; a California League Single “A” minor league baseball stadium, a bridge first proposed in the early 1970s across the Mojave River providing a third major entrance into the community; and, the complete elimination of a 70% sales tax leakage to surrounding communities through the development of 3.5 million square feet of commercial retail over a three-year period of time.
2. Business Growth.
Grand Terrace leaks sales tax to other surrounding cities because of the limited number of available goods for sale in the City. The City lags significantly behind cities of similar size in terms of sale and use tax generation. The pure and simple reason for this is the lack of businesses to capture those sales tax dollars. I believe in attracting clean, safe, job-producing businesses in fields that are high paying. Businesses we attract must also not pollute our air or negatively affect the daily, leisurely life of our residents.
Hand in hand with economic development is the ability to assist in the financing of projects. I have been the "lead" in working with developers, banks, private financers and equity partners on projects for the various cities in which I worked. I fully comprehend and have leveraged very limited City resources in the past to attract funding to defining economic development projects in those cities.
Grand Terrace occupies only 3.6 sq miles in land area with major freeways traversing the area's two major cities (its employment centers), and which also impacts its major residential areas. As a result, this arrangement almost always results in traffic congestion and increased air pollution. Adding more businesses without well thought out traffic and housing plans will exacerbate this situation. Proper mitigation of traffic impacts caused by new development requires an experienced hand in navigating all the pitfalls and the ability to marshal necessary resources to provide effective solutions.