- Strengthening Our Community
My favorite thing in Anaheim Hills has always been our Fourth of July celebration. Even as a kid, I'd leave the house early, walk down the hill to the parade route and not come home until the fireworks at Peralta Park were over. More than anything the Anaheim Hills Fourth of July celebration always reminded me of the strength of our community.
Over the past few years, our community has been finding new ways to grow strong. New online forums, through the Anaheim Hills Buzz and Nextdoor.com, have grown into robust community gathering places for sharing news and connecting with our neighbors. Participation in the City of Anaheim's neighborhood meetings has also increased in recent months.
We need a political leader that will continue to help grow these community forums and events, and will find new ways to strengthen our community. I am committed to championing the continued engagement between the City of Anaheim and these forums, as well as holding regular community meetings so residents can make their voices heard directly by city staff. Community engagement is critical to well run city, and I'll do whatever it takes to ensure our voices are heard in City Hall.
- Public Safety
Over the past few years, Anaheim Hills has experienced an increase in crime which has made our community feel less safe. We're seeing more homes and cars broken into, oftentimes by professional crews from out of the area. Many of us have installed video systems and Ring doorbells to help deter this type of crime, but it hasn't been enough.
We need a leader who will work with the Anaheim Police Department and neighborhood groups to bring enough of the right resources to address our crime problem before it gets any worse. The Anaheim Police Department is very good at supporting residents who express interest in setting up Neighborhood Watch groups and reducing crime in their neighborhood. However, I want to take a more proactive approach where, instead of waiting for residents to approach the City, the City reaches out to residents before there are enough problems with crime to cause concern.
Homelessness has become an acute crisis in Anaheim. As a cyclist, I have seen this crisis grow over the past few years as I've travelled up and down the Santa Ana River Trail. Today, that trail is all but unusable for transportation or recreation due to the homeless encampments on the riverbanks. We need to find ways to address homelessness in our community in order to return the use of our parks and recreational facilities to all Anaheim residents, and, more importantly, to move the residents of the homeless encampment out of homelessness.
The City of Anaheim and the County of Orange have a misguided approach to solving homelessness. Both the City and the County are working on separate comprehensive plans to end homelessness. Unfortunately, the homeless and our communities don't have time to wait for a comprehensive plan to be prepared. While County and City officials are spinning their wheels trying to come up with a comprehensive plan to end homelessness, we thankfully have people in our community such as the Orange County Burrito Project, who are taking small but bold steps to help address homelessness and the needs of the homeless in our community. We need more of these types of small scale efforts that we can build on to find lasting solutions to our homeless crisis.
The number of homeless residents in our community continues to climb, what our current leaders are doing simply isn't working. We need a leader that will bring a new approach to ending homelessness in our community. As somebody with experience as an affordable housing developer, and who knows many of the non-profits working to end homelessness through my service as Chair of the Anaheim Community Services Board, I have a thorough understanding of the issues that lead to and exacerbate homelessness. I'll take a pragmatic approach to addressing homelessness for the sake of our homeless residents and our community as a whole.