Editor’s note: All candidates were asked the same questions and were given the same amount of time to submit their answers. Answers are posted as they were received from each candidate. Questions were asked before Sacramento County was moved to the Red Tier on the State’s four-tiered Blueprint for Safer Economy plan. Most candidates answered all questions, other candidates chose not to answer some questions.
Q. What will be your top three goals be while on Council?
A. Secure additional businesses for the downtown area, along with the industrial area to provide increased job opportunities as well as services for our residents. Continue to work with the schools to provide the best education we can for our students. Work with Staff on budget issues and find a way to get our parks back on a weekly maintenance and, work with Police to improve our retention rate with officers, and push for the completion of Walker Park Phase II.
Q. What are your thoughts on how Galt should grow?
A. I believe growth in our town is a delicate issue. The City’s General Plan provides for and allows for growth. I believe we do need smart growth in the commercial and industrial areas along with housing to provide jobs and service opportunities for the community. Planned and smart growth will help with current budget issues.
Q. Is a “small town feel” important to you and how will you ensure Galt’s “charm” as growth occurs?
A. The sense of community is not based on the number of homes we have, it is based on the people within the community that make Galt a great place to live and how they raise their family. Galt‘s small town feel is what attracted me to raise my family here.
Q. Recent controversial projects have come before both the Planning Commission and Council. What decisions would you have made on the following and why:
A. I am in favor of this project and voted for approval of this project along with all my fellow planning commissioners. I believe this is a great addition to Galt, it brings with it a new park site, and an additional school site for the community. This project will also provide connectivity for the community by completing Carillion Blvd built from Simmerhorn to Boessow Road. This project also provides the opportunity to attract much needed new commercial along the East side of 99.
Fairway Oaks Annexation/Development
The Fairway Oaks Subdivision and Annexation component was presented as one project. However, these are two separate actions. The Fairway Oaks Subdivision is consistent with the general plan therefore the planning commission vote was 5-0 in favor of this project. It is my belief that this will be a nice additional to our town. I believe the island needs to become part of the city. This annexation will provide the City the opportunity to complete the improvements along Lincoln Way, that are currently not improved since it is county. If we can improve Lincoln Way along this section of roadway, we can create better connectivity, and a safer pathway for kids walking to school as well as the many others that walk along Lincoln Way.
This will be a great development for Galt and was approved by the planning commission unanimously and approved by City Council with a 4-1 vote. The gated community is something new for Galt and will provide a step-up opportunity for our residences.
Q. A couple of controversial projects are still up in the air, what decisions would you make regarding these plans if elected and why?
Galt Market Plan
A. Until I see a more comprehensive plan for the market, I do not know what decision I would make. What I do know is that I do not want to see the loss of any amenities the Galt Market area provides. Such as the softball complex, swimming pool and market.
Carillion Boulevard Project
I am looking forward to seeing what the designers bring back to us for some type of hybrid layout. I would also really like to see some more community outreach on this.
Q. The city’s Lighting and Landscape Districts are currently under water and a significant portion of existing homes do not belong to one of the districts. Would you support a city-wide CFD? Why or why not? If you are in support of the CFD, what will you do to make sure it happens?
A. I would support a city wide CFD. We must get our parks back in order so our residences can enjoy them. It is unfortunate when some of the districts were formed there was not enough foresight to have built in escalators to help with increasing cost. As a community we must maintain our parks for our residents, and sports programs. Well maintained parks show the pride of the community.
Q. The city routinely seeks new businesses, both small and large, to come to Galt. How will you ensure existing businesses thrive with the new growth?
A. In an ideal situation we would find business that do not already compete with our local business. We also need to continue to support the shop local campaign.
Q. The COVID pandemic has decimated businesses across the city. What will you support to help the local businesses?
A. As a community we all need to continue to shop local and support our small-town businesses. From the council side, we must work with staff to see if we can get any local support from the state to help our businesses, and we need to find a way to get our business back open at a 100%.
Q. Last year, Council approved infill incentives for businesses, however buildings still are not filled, would you be in favor of additional incentives to draw businesses?
A. Before I would support additional incentives, I would need to know what the return would be to the city for providing the additional incentive.
Q. The city has been accused on numerous occasions of not being “transparent”. What does transparency look like to you and what will you do to ensure the city is communicating with the residents?
A. We need to be transparent to our residents. I believe we need to get more of our residents involved in the process to ensure that accurate information is being shared and find better platform for providing information to the community.
Q. How will you balance the opinion of the citizens who come forward to voice their opinion on an issue before Council versus those who may not speak up?
A. I will make myself available by email, phone, and office hours for those that do not want to come forward at council. I will also reach out to people in the community to keep a pulse on the concerns of the public. I would like to work with staff to see if we can use some type of online polling system.
Q. Will you make decisions based on the majority of voices speaking at meetings, or what you feel, through your research, is best for the overall community? How will you communicate your decision to the residents?
A. My decisions will be based on the input I receive from the public, my own research, and what I believe will be the best for the community. I will do my best to express to the public the reason for my vote.
Q. As racial tensions rise across the country, what policies/procedures would you suggest/support to keep Galt united despite the city’s racial diversity?
A. I would work with my community to have events that brings us together as a community.
Q. As a small town, Galt has generally been a safe community. What would you support to continue the safety within the community, and what would you do to enhance current safety programs?
A. I would work alongside our police, fire and others to ensure the safety of our community. We also need to encourage our residences to be involved and provide the support that comes from having a close community. I believe we need to find a way to increase police retention of our officers. I believe if we can work with our officers to stay with our great town, they become more involved in the community and that is a win for Galt.
Q. Due to a budget shortfall, City Council has had to make difficult cuts, much to the public’s dismay – specifically regarding landscaping. If elected, what will you propose to mitigate this situation?
A. We need to continue to work on getting more business into our town, that create jobs, services and support local business which in turn will aid in additional revenue for the city. We need to have controlled growth to help aid in procuring these businesses. Most importantly we need to stay fiscally responsible.