I am first of all, an environmentalist.
Climate change is the most important issue of our time. We must begin to change our ways as a society in order to leave our children and grandchildren a planet that is not overheated. Peninsula Clean Energy, which provides 85% greenhouse gas-free electricity to San Mateo County at 5% less cost than PG&E is a step in the right direction. I’m a founding board member.
Sea level rise is a consequence of climate change. I’m for protecting homes and businesses from bluff erosion, which is a problem now, and sea level rise, a problem in the future. And I’m committed to finding state or federal funds to replace the Beach Blvd. seawall.
I’m also for protecting our parks and open spaces, beaches, steelhead and other wildlife, and creeks.
Second, I’m a fiscal moderate, because I have to be. In Pacifica, our city government is not rich. We’re a bedroom community, relying primarily on property tax, and get little sales tax revenue, one cent on the dollar (the rest goes to the state and county). We struggle to pave our streets and to pay our employees. Anticipated increased revenue coming from short-term rentals, new hotels, and the marijuana excise tax will probably just cover City employee salary increases and a $3.2 million increase in PERS retirement costs over the next four years.
I support a new library at the Sharp Park Library site so long as the Sanchez Library is saved also. The latest plan for Sanchez is a high-tech one with lockers for ordered books and other features that will allow reduced staffing.
In the Wastewater Department, ongoing sewer main replacement and lateral repairs are slowly reducing leakage of sewage into our creeks and ultimately the ocean.
I favor repaving arterial streets as grant funds become available.
I have to say something about the hit pieces against me that have appeared in the mail. Folks that have been around longer than I have said they’ve never seen negative campaign mailers aimed at a particular candidate for council in Pacifica.
The first hit piece was about managed retreat, using right wing opinion pieces from the publisher of the Pacific Tribune, Sherman Frederick. I’ve said since last March at least, that I will protect homes and businesses from bluff erosion and sea level rise. The people saying “No Managed Retreat”, do they want to armor Linda Mar beach and Mori Point? I don’t think so, but that’s what’s implied with a vague statement like “No Managed Retreat”. That’s why I’m more specific, wanting to protect homes and businesses.
The second hit piece is paid for by the California Association of Realtors, and the National Association of Realtors. Aside from a really bad photoshop job on me, it accuses me of sending back $56 million that “could’ve been invested in our community”. That’s if you call widening Highway 1 to six lanes, within sight of the ocean, and disrupting the commutes of Linda Mar residents for years during construction, “investing in our community”. That’s what the $56 million was for.
All 3 of the realtor candidates, O’Neill, Beckmeyer, and Flores, have received over $11,000 in support from the National Association of Realtors that’s going for online ads. They’ve all received $2,500 from San Mateo County Association of Realtors (SAMCAR). Mike O’Neill has another $1,000 from the California Apartment Association and $2,500 from the California Association of Realtors. Tom Thompson, an apartment owner from San Mateo, has contributed $1,500 to all 3, and $5,000 to the No Managed Retreat mailer. These figures are straight from the candidates’ financial statements posted on the City’s website.
The choice couldn’t be more clear. Out of town realtors, or me, the guy who’s campaigning on $11,000 total, all from individuals. I need everybody to talk to or email their neighbors and friends, or post on Facebook or Nextdoor. And vote. Together we’ll win this thing.