Town where you live
Experience (300 characters max)
Currently serving as Mayor Pro-tem. I have raised 7 lovely children in Pasco. Subsequently earning two master degrees, I currently work as an information professional with Pasco Schools. I am passionate about long term planning and ensuring all citizens get equal value for their tax investment.
One of the fastest growing cities for decades Pasco proactively and systematically manages its long-term plan for roads, water and sewer plants. We acquire water rights as development takes place, and require new businesses to build roads and traffic lights. We actively worked with the Department of Natural Resources to sell agricultural land in the middle of our growth management area to more efficiently deliver city services, providing some of the most affordable housing in the Tri-Cities.
We continue to work with legislators, encouraging them to leave local tax dollars in our community so we can maintain local services. We use new technologies such as micro-surfacing to extend the life of roads and work diligently to manage tax dollars in order to preserve and extend our road system. We apply for state and Federal grants to help with large projects such as the Lewis Street Underpass and we leverage Federal Community Block Grant funds to revitalize older parts of town.
Homelessness is a complex issue involving several variables including: high home price/wage ratios, substance abuse, mental health issues, unemployment and a lack of high paying jobs our workers are prepared to fill. In Pasco, our police department is pursuing a grant that will allow us help the mentally ill. The council has committed block grant funds to several agencies including Habitat for Humanity and Rebuilding Mid-Columbia to build low income housing in empty city lots. We also allocate funds to the Pasco Housing authority to upgrade and maintain low income subsidized housing. Our zoning laws allow for a variety of housing stock to be built on lots both large and small. We support our public-school system and we have aggressively pursued bringing industries to Pasco which pay higher wages.
Pasco maintains a senior citizen position on our Parks and Rec board. This person advises us on issues important to seniors. The 1st Avenue center behind city hall hosts;
daily hot meals
socials and meetings for senior citizens
with additional activities hosted in city hall.
We anticipate providing more space and activities for seniors in the new community center we plan to build.
While door belling, several constituents have asked that Pasco provide senior citizen housing. Except for our subsidies to low income housing, building senior citizen housing is the function of private business. We have invited developers to consider senior housing in our community but when they consider our median age, between 27 and 29, they have shown little interest in building here.
Pasco provides a full array of municipal services including drinking water, sewer and ambulance. It is not our job nor do we have the authority to request Pasco citizens prove their immigration status. Pasco police do not inquire about immigration status when working with the public nor do they take direction from federal agencies on immigration law.
Pasco values its relationship with our residents and we strive to continually improve our relationship delivering the best municipal services we can.
Three major issues facing cities are:
1) our ability to control our right of ways and licensing requirements
2) our ability to protect funding which maintains basic city services such as water, sewer, roads, police, fire and parks
3) our ability to maintain roads
For profit telecom companies and transportation companies serving only their subscribers, are making direct appeals to the legislature to pre-empt the rights of cities to serve their entire population by denying them local control over public rights of way and licensing. If they succeed this will prove extremely costly for tax payers in the long run.
Legislators routinely attempt to sweep funding from local jurisdictions to fill state budget gaps, without providing cities any way to maintain basic public services such as roads, police, fire and parks.
Pasco is taking increasingly larger amounts of our general fund to maintain roads. We need better legislative tools to finance this important resource.
Of the issues listed above I believe educating and persuading the legislature to value and support local communities is paramount.
Homelessness and mental health are quickly rising to the top of our critical list. Cities do not have authority over public/mental health, counties do, but we are starting to look at alternative ways we can paricipate in solving these problems which lead to poor performance in school, poor job prospects, addiction and diminished quality of life for all residents.
If elected I will continue to work with our mayor, council and city management team as I have always done. I will attend public forums with an open mind, take comments and input from the public seriously, work in good faith, verify facts, make my best arguments in favor of, or opposed to, a topic and support the prevailing vote of council.
Town where you live
Experience (300 characters max)
CBC, WSU, Leadership Tri-Cities class 22, Goethe Institute for German as a foreign language,
The biggest issue involving Pasco's infrastructure is the congestion on road 68 vs. lower traffic flow in the older downtown district. In the last 15 years Pasco has experienced tremendous population growth a with haphazard approach to traffic flow around the road 68 interchange. I do understand that not everything can be foreseen yet the future project on road 100 needs to be done in a way that allows for traffic to flow smoothly while considering future growth - this can be done. Since I live off of road 100 this project interests me greatly and if elected I will do everything in my power to make sure of proper traffic flow and future business locations are done in a manner that is both smart and something Pasco citizens will be proud of. In relation to downtown Pasco I would like to see a overall theme for the area and see that we can make this part of town viable again while being fiscally prudent with Pasco tax dollars.
First off the City Council needs to be working with the downtown Gospel Mission in establishing long term goals with both parties interest in mind. Talking with the leaders at the Gospel Mission this has not been done. Working together there should be common ground to address the large amounts of homelessness in downtown Pasco. I'm also an advocate for the program that the Kennewick Police department have in that help the homeless population with bus tickets and such so they can get back to there hometown. I feel that as a city there is always more that we can do to the less fortunate in our society.
My commitment to senior citizens and all citizens for that matter is to keep our taxes in Pasco low! I have seen my own grandparents pushed out of their home on the west side of Washington when they couldn't keep up with all the new taxes. I would also be more than willing to sit down and find solutions to any senior citizens concerns in relation to city government.
Pasco is a sanctuary city with a large Latino population. I do believe as a citizen and business leader we need to enforce our laws both on a state and national level. I am for doing what is lawfully right while always being compassionate to those that are less fortunate. If elected I am supportive of measures that will assist in addressing public safety needs in downtown Pasco. It is will my fullest conviction that we do everything possible as a city so another incident like the killing of Antonio Zambrano-Montes doesn't occur again.
Besides the two issues that I've stated about in previous answers such as race relations with the Pasco citizens and traffic congestion on road 68 I believe the next biggest issue is small business economic growth. If as a city we don't have good jobs for our citizens then we will never have the tax revenue for more roads, overpasses, lights, parks and newer schools. One solution would be to implement a small business portal on the city of Pasco website. Through this portal an individual wanting to start a new business would be given step by step instructions on people and organizations they needed to talk with in regards to taxes, licenses, buildings and city codes. With this help both in English and Spanish we as a city would encourage small business development which is vital to both job creation and diversity here in Pasco.
Doing what we can to improve the Latino perception of the city government and police force along with the image of Pasco as a whole is by far the most important since if we can accomplish this goal, as a city we will experience more interest in people wanting to shop and play here. I honestly believe this goal is possible if we have a younger city council that is willing to engage the citizens of Pasco and work towards solutions.
My door will always be open for the mayor and city manager or anyone else that has concerns. I would have no issue with staying late or coming in early to talk with Mayor Watkins or our city manager Dave Zabell. I am very respectful of the positions they hold in our city and would be always willing to discuss any issue.