Sunday, November 05, 2006

City Council Election News Update

Here are a few news stories about the upcoming elections:

Press-Enterprise, October 26, "Yucaipa-council issues include country image"
Ken Smith:
Smith, a 22-year Yucaipa resident, who ran unsuccessfully for state Assembly in June, says the lack of retail shopping drives residents, and their sales tax dollars, to surrounding cities such as Redlands and Beaumont.

"We need to put the infrastructure in here that benefits Yucaipa," Smith said.
Smith envisions a trendy, high-end shopping center impressive enough to draw Inland motorists off the freeway at Oak Glen and Live Oak Canyon roads. Think of a scaled-down version of Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga or The River in Palm Springs, Smith said.
Alan Drusys:
The 57-year-old voted to build city parks and ball fields and orchestrated the $750,000 purchase of a stainless-steel swimming pool used during time trials for the 2004 Olympics. Construction on a site for the pool will begin at Crafton Hills College next spring.

As for the freeway corridor, Drusys offered the idea of keeping recreational amenities. A movie theater -- lacking in the town -- and a network of horse, hiking and mountain biking trails would be a wonderful addition, he said.

"I have a hard time understanding the vision that captures sales tax revenue at any and all cost," said Drusys, who advocates balancing the city's budget through property taxes. "We are financially stable the way we are."
Tom Masner:
Masner, an eight-year council veteran, felt that adding retail shopping would lead to less traffic down the road.
Masner also wants to add police and bring a commercial-size ice rink to Yucaipa, with an arena large enough to warrant a minor league hockey team.

News Mirror, October 26, "Election 2006 - Yucaipa City Council (two seats)"
The News Mirror asked the City Council candidates the following questions:

"Do you support the mobile home rent control ordinance and, if so, do you recommend any changes in it?"
Short answers:
- Masner: "generally supports"the ordinance
- Drusys: "wholeheartedly supports" the ordinance
- Smith: "supports fundamentally" the ordinance

"What do you think about the current draft of a specific plan for the freeway corridor? Would you like to see changes in it?"
Short answers:
- Masner: whould like two changes, more high density housing, and doesn't believe in the Hillside ordinance
- Drusys: the corridor should have "both stores and trees", "both homes and hillsides"
- Smith: generation of sales tax revenue should be the top priority

"What if anything can and should be done about the high electricity bills many residents of the city experienced last summer?"
Short answers:
- Masner: pressure the CPUC to revise the current zoning system
- Drusys: city council should look into it
- Smith: pressure the state Assembly to force the CPUC to change their system

"Would you support an application by Wal-Mart to build a super-store in Yucaipa? How about a Target store?"
Short answers:
- Masner: no to Wal-Mart, yes to Target
- Drusys: would judge each application on its merits
- Smith: doesn't think Yucaipa is big enough to support a superstore, but wouldn't stop one from coming here

"Do you believe the current ordinance that bans smoking in all city parks is a good policy?"
Short answers:
- Masner: no, and voted against it
- Drusys: yes, and voted for it
- Smith: no

" Each December the city council elects one of its members as mayor. If you are a member of the council in December, will you support Dick Riddell for another term as mayor, assuming he still wants to be mayor?"
Short answers:
- Masner: would not nominate Riddell, but would support a majority decision
- Drusys: yes
- Smith: not sure at this time

"What are the three most important things the city council needs to do in the coming year?"
Short answers:
- Masner: expand the sales tax base, provide affordable housing, add more police officers
- Drusys: finish the specific plan for the freeway corridor, review code enforcement services for mobile home parks, look into utility rates
- Smith: bring stores and businesses into town, look to area south of Yucaipa Blvd, b ring activities for kids (movie theater, skating rink, etc)

Read the whole article for details.

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