protecting san clemente from toll roads and the tca
We have a responsibility to protect a healthy quality of life, not just for ourselves, but for future generations. To do that, we need to stop the Transportation Corridor Agency (TCA) from building antiquated 1980’s technology when there are more responsible, healthy, and efficient alternatives available. The economic discrimination of these roads should not be allowed to continue. We need legislation to remove the TCA's authority and give the power to the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), the true planning agency for Orange County.
The TCA’s $2 billion 241-extension would pass directly over San Clemente High School and would actually worsen traffic on the I-5. In addition, their proposal to add toll lanes to the 5-freeway in San Clemente is disastrous and needs to be stopped immediately. The TCA has failed immensely in their mission of “enhancing mobility in Orange County and Southern California” and doesn’t deserve a penny more of our taxpayer dollars through Development Fee and support from the California Department of Transportation and Federal Tifia loans.
Aside from managing current toll roads and paying off their debts, the TCA is no longer wanted or needed. Due to their proven unsustainable business model, lack of concern for our quality of life, and disregard for a healthy environment and water quality, I am asking you to stand with me in saying “Not one more inch!” to the TCA. It is time that our community stands together to abolish the TCA and demand that the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) control all transportation planning in this county. If elected, I would not only fight to dissolve the TCA, but also work with residents to bring modern and de-privatized solutions to streamline mobility for our growing community.
ensuring the safe storage of Socal edison's nuclear waste
As the founder of an international environmental organization and a delegate at the National Grassroots Summit on Radioactive Waste, I have long since been an advocate for protecting our coastlines and natural habitats. If elected, I will champion the safe storage of hazardous waste that is currently being buried at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. It is vital that we make it clear to the majority owner of the generating station, Southern California Edison, that we won’t allow them to profit at the expense of our community and environment.
Ensuring the safe storage of nuclear waste is imperative, due to Edison’s lack of concern for public safety, our local ecosystems, and the livelihoods of future generations. Edison is currently burying radioactive waste feet away from the shoreline at San Onofre State Beach. The canisters storing the waste cannot be repaired, transported, or monitored - we deserve better. The question is whether local governments will come together and demand increased safety requirements for nuclear waste storage, or whether our elected officials will continue to treat this catastrophic issue as a minor inconvenience.
As a member of the San Clemente City Council, I would use my position to do what others have failed to accomplish in the past; ensure a long-term solution to safely move and store the high-level radioactive waste at San Onofre.
Uniting To End Homelessness
Ensuring the best quality of life for all members of our community is my top priority. If elected, I will work to unite local governments, community groups, and other elected officials to end the growing issue of homelessness in our city.
I will also hold the Orange County Board of Supervisors accountable in addressing the the issue. For years, city governments throughout the county, like San Clemente, have had to pay the brunt of the costs associated with homelessness when at the same time the Orange County Board of Supervisors has hidden several hundred million in unspent funds that could have been allocated to address homelessness. This is deplorable and needs to change.
The cost savings on housing the homeless, and particularly the chronically street homeless, show a consistent and compelling pattern: costs are significantly lower among those who are housed. As a member of the San Clemente City Council, I will create and implement permanent solutions to this disheartening issue that - if resolved correctly - will improve the quality of life for all members of our community.
transitioning san clemente to a sustainable future
As the founder of a local environmental organization, I have worked for years to do what our city council has failed to do; preserve and conserve San Clemente’s world-renowned natural habitats. If elected, I intend to do everything in my power to stop the degradation of our environment and pursue policies that build a more sustainable future. These policies would fit into a three part plan, including laws that: reduce the pollution of our air, water, and land; conserve energy and quickly develop clean and renewable sources of energy; and build infrastructure to transition San Clemente into an environmentally friendly future.
My three-part plan to addressing San Clemente’s environmental issues would include a ban on local businesses from distributing plastic straws, stirrers, cups and utensils to the public; a revised comprehensive Climate Action Plan, with a goal to transition to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2030; and encourage better design and construction of buildings through a flexible, non-bureaucratic standard.
As a coastal community, San Clemente is already beginning to feel the effects of climate change and increased pollution. Rising sea levels and littered beaches pose an immense threat to our city’s tourism, housing market, and local businesses. If elected, I will make it my mission to implement modern solutions to our city’s worsening environmental issues.
expanding affordable housing
A great number of San Clemente residents and small businesses are struggling to keep up with record high mortgages and rent prices. Meanwhile, decent and affordable rental apartments are hard to come by, and many households are spending 50 percent or more of their income on housing.
Since co-founding the Saddleback College Housing Task Force, affordable housing has been a top priority of mine. I believe that in order to end the issue of skyrocketing mortgages and rent prices, we need to enact a city-wide rent control policy, create a rent control board to oversee this process and mediate landlord-tenant disputes, and encourage the expansion of affordable and subsidized housing within our community.
Since the meltdown and recession, many individuals still remain underwater with their mortgages or can’t get a loan to buy a house. On the rental side, a great deal of residents lack access to adequate affordable housing, with many facing a daily choice between housing, food, and healthcare. Meanwhile, working families, veterans, mentally ill, and the poor must survive by living in cars, homeless shelters, or on the street. If elected to the San Clemente City Council, I will fight to reform the affordable housing crisis and ensure stable rents for all residents and businesses.
Fighting for Emergency Medical Services
As an eighteen year resident of San Clemente, I know that South Orange County is currently grossly underserved with regards to emergency services. It is in my view that every man, woman, and child in our city should have access to a nearby hospital with emergency services. For these reasons and more, I will commit myself and the resources of our city to fight for just that.
There is currently a lawsuit under submission regarding the zoning requirements for a hospital with emergency services in San Clemente. The decision of this case could be released any day. Unfortunately, even if the lawsuit is decided in favor of our city, we will not instantaneously be granted a new hospital.
Bringing in a new hospital with emergency services will require careful planning, innovative funding, and forward thinking. As a delegate to the National Summit On Radioactive Waste, I know that the City of San Clemente is in a strong position to receive H.R. 3929 funding. H.R. 3929, also known as the Stranded Nuclear Waste Accountability Act of 2017, is a congressional bill that specifies that San Clemente could receive upwards of $24 million to mitigate the many problems caused by living next to stranded nuclear waste. This is money that could possibly help fund a new hospital with emergency services. Regardless of the outcome of the settlement, I will continue to fight for a hospital with emergency services for our city.
Campaign Finance Reform & Corporate-free
Money has an outsized influence on our current electoral system, endangering our representative democracy. Poll after poll shows that voters think the political system is controlled by big companies, political action committees, and rich individuals. Because of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling and the activism of right-wing billionaires, the amount of money pouring into political campaigns through independent expenditures has grown exponentially. That is why I’m committed to running a corporate-and-developer-free campaign. As a corporate-and-developer-free candidate, I am committed to refusing donations from corporations, industry lobbyists, corporate representatives, political bundlers, developers, and Political Action Committees (except for unions).
The growing cost associated with running for office make campaigns prohibitively expensive for most Americans, thus restricting the freedom to run for office to a small minority of the population. In addition, with the rising cost of running for office, candidates need to spend more time fundraising, which restricts their ability to meet with and listen to their constituents. The system is broken and the only real solution is public financing of election campaigns. New York City’s law, for example, requires participating candidates to limit campaign spending; in exchange, a public fund will match small donations. Connecticut provides a good public financing model as well.
Increasing Voter turnout
In a democracy, it is every citizen's duty to vote, and the first step in achieving this is by encouraging voter registration. One way in which we could streamline the voter registration process is by enacting a simple ordinance that would require landlords to provide information on voter registration and a registration form to new tenants. Whenever people move, they need to register to vote or update their preexisting voter registration. This ordinance would not only prove to be beneficial for new residents of San Clemente, but also longtime residents who may be moving to a new location.
Creating a Transparent government
An informed public is essential to democracy. Unfortunately, the public cannot be truly informed if their representatives are stifling access to government information. For years, community members have been asking the San Clemente City Council to adopt sunshine laws to allow for certain proceedings of government to be open or available to the public. Time and time again, these citizens have been met with a resounding “no” by the council.
It is in my view that government should be transparent, participatory, and collaborative. That is why I will make it a priority of mine to enact a Sunshine Ordinance in the City of San Clemente, much like the one that was passed by Santa Ana in 2012. An ordinance such as this would ensure that the people of San Clemente remain in control of the government that they created.