Why Mike for City Council

Why Vote for Mike Diaz

When I ran in 2016 I told the voters about my priorities and what I wanted to accomplish for you. On many of the big ticket items, I have delivered for south west Chula Vista and to the city as a whole. My main priority was to bring focus back to west Chula Vista. I told you in 2016 that city hall focuses more on Eastlalke and Otay Ranch and had forgotten about you and me in west Chula Vista. As you will see, I have begun to change that. With the voter approval of Measure "P" (infrastructure maintenance tax) in 2016, I made sure that west Chula Vista got it's fair share of those funds. In fact, we in west Chula Vista got more. We have repaired more roads, storm drains, pot holes, parks, city buildings, and fire stations than east Chula Vista. There is still more to do, so I am asking you to allow me to finish what I have begun and to vote for me on election day.

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Repave our streets

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Put more cops on the street

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Faster response times for police and fire

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Get rid of pot holes

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Improve our parks

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Added and improved recreation centers/parks

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Created youth drop-off centers

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Reduce traffic

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Create jobs

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Add new sidewalks

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Made Chula Vista Bay Front a reality

Jobs

CV_RFQ_(041819).jpgWhen one of my opponents comes to your door, please listen to what they want to do for Chula Vista. Interestingly, you may find that what they want, I have already put in motion. For example, they may say "Jobs". Well, during my term we approved the Bayfront project. This project will be the last project on California coastal lands of this size. It will include a 1600 room resort hotel and convention center with 270,000 square feet of convention space. It will include 1500 condos, two RV parks, 200 acres of park lands, and a mix of commercial and retail. This project will create about 7000 jobs in west Chula Vista. It will also generate over 1 billion dollars of economic activity in the south bay region.  I don't think that can be topped, so when they tell you they'll create jobs, ask "how many?".

Streets and Pot Holes

I'm not sure anyone would disagree that west Chula Vista had some bad streets and plenty of potholes. In 2016, I opposed Measure 'P', the half cent sales tax. I felt that city hall would spendStreets the money on other things rather than infrastructure repairs. I promised you, I would hold city hall's feet to the fire and would make sure the city spent Measure 'P' the way you expected them to spend it. Well, I have done just that. Over the last couple of years the city has spent millions of dollars on street repairs including the repair of pot holes. We repaved over 18 miles of streets just in district 4 alone. We repaired thousands of pot holes. One of my priorities has been side walks. Our kids have had to walk on rain soaked roads, because what should be a sidewalk is mud. During my three years in office, we have added over 12,000 feet of new sidewalks in district 4. Again, west Chula Vista got it's lion share of Measure 'P' funding for street repairs. My office has ensured we get our lions share of resources to repair and replace crumbling infrastructure. 

Public Safety

This may be the most used reason for any local political candidate wanting your vote. Candidates for many years have told you that public safety is their priority and that they will hire more cops and firefighters to keep you safer and for years they have done nothing. In fact, a previous city council body approved a resolution to increase our fire department staffing. It was not until I got into office that the city improved the fire department staffing to the industry standard (NFPA 1710) of four persons. The great news is that the fire department is finally making it's required response times. Just like the jobs section above, I'm not sure what Chula Vista Police Departmentany candidate can promise that I have not already done to make you safer. In southwest Chula Vista, where you and I live, we are getting two new fire stations. One at Moss and Alpine and the other right next to the south Library at Orange and Fourth Avenue. On the homeless side, the police department will be tripling the staffing for their Homeless Outreach Team (HOT). In 2007 the PD had 257 sworn police officers and after the 2008 recession staffing fell to a low of 223 positions. I along with the rest of the City Council agreed to place Measure 'A' on the ballot to ask the community to raise the sales tax one half percent to improve public safety staffing. The voters agreed with us and approved the tax. Today we have more police officers on the street than ever before and we will be adding 19 more by fiscal year 2023. Again, I'm not sure what any candidate can promise you in public safety that I have not already done.

Reduced Traffic

During my term we created and approved a 'Traffic Signal Communications Master Plan' which will help to reduce traffic in Chula Vista. This new master plan is part of another over arching plan approved during my term and that is the 'Chula Vista Smart Cities'  initiative. The traffic management plan is specifically designed to improve traffic flow in Chula Vista. Fourty intersections have already been Chula Vista smart traffic controlsoutfitted with the new technology and reports show that there has been a reduction in all but one intersection. Our new smart traffic controls will be able to see traffic well before the intersection and can adjust the duration of the green and red lights on real-time traffic patterns. We also just approved making the same upgrades to all the traffic lights on Broadway from Main Street to 'C' Street. 

Illegal Marijuana Shops

Illegal pot shops have been a real problem in south west Chula Vista and no other Councilmember has fought as hard as me to close these shops down. The city council significantly increased the fines for these shops, but that did not slow them down. These illegal businesses make so much money, the fines do little to discourage the operators. Normally, you would request to district attorney to prosecute these cases. But the region has had little luck convincing the DA to prosecute these illegal operators. So the only other way to close illegal pots shops is to use the civil court system to evict the businesses. Pot shops in Chula Vistabecause these operators make so much money, they can slow the court system down to a crawl. It can take us as much as 13 months to close one business down. In the time that I have been in office the city has closed about forty illegal pots shops, so we are closing them down. The problem is, they just open right back up again in a different location. That is why I pushed very hard to create a prosecution unit in Chula Vista. In 2019, we finally hire our first prosecutor. Our prosecutor is now working to close illegal pot shops down. The problem is, there is no support for the prosecutor. Our prosecutor needs to have at least one paralegal and one investigator. Additionally, we also need to provide the Police Department's Special Investigations Unit with support staff as well. In December of 2019, I pleaded with my fellow councilmembers to hire the support staff needed to close these illegal pot shops and they agreed to have staff come back with a staffing plan. When that happens, we will be able to gather the evidence required to put a case together and have our prosecutor take these illegal operators to criminal court. Our prosecutor can now get search warrants to enter these businesses and when we do we can also seize money, property and make arrests. We have never been able to do that before. I believe this new prosecutor, when fully staffed will be able to close most if not all the illegal pot shops in Chula Vista, most of which operate in south west Chula Vista.

 

Parks

As long as I can remember Lauderbach Park recreation center has been closed. The park has also been taken over by the homeless. I have been working to reopen the rec center and city staff tells me that it will re-open in January of 2020. The center will be operated by two non-profits; South bay Community Services and Luv Thy Neighbor. The center will provide a wide range of services for our community. Some of of the services include: tutoring/academic assistance, job readiness, character development, food for families, rental and housing assistance, job preparation, and tax preparation. We are also investing over one million dollars to upgrade the sports field in the park. All of the work and investment to reactivate this park will also help to displace the homeless in the park.

Since my first day in office I have been working to reactivate the whole area surrounding Loma Verde Park. This includes the recreation center, Loma Verde Park (SDG&E park), and Max Field. My vision is to make the entire area a sports and recreation complex. One of my first phone calls as your Councilmember was from a resident complaining that the bridge the leads between the rec center and max Field has not been usable for years. I have been working to replace the bridge. The good news is we have contracted with a company to look at access to Max Field to ensure we have ADA access. This project will include looking at the best way to provide the public access from the rec center to Max Field. We are looking at a adding a pathway between the two facilities. Probably, the biggest news is that we are working hard to secure grant funding to do a tear-down of the recreation center. I was one of the first kids to go to the center when it first opened up. Unfortunately, the rec center's gym was never a real gym. The ceiling is just about 15 feet high and so playing basketball, volleyball or other similar activities was never an option in this center. We currently have 3 million dollars secured for Loma Verde rec center. Staff is hopeful that we will be successful in securing a state grant for about 8 million dollars. We should have an answer from the state in January 2020. If we are successful, we will tear down the center and rebuild it to what it should have been day one. 

 

Homeless

I am currently working with Bob McElroy from the Alpha Project to bring  temporary housing and support services to south west Chula Vista. We have identified a location and I am working with city staff and the Alpha Project to make this a reality. My goal for this project is to provide about 250 beds with full wrap around services for those without shelter.  The Alpha Project model has proven to be successful in providing the homeless with housing, work, job training, mental health services and much more.  By teaming up with the Alpha Project we can bring desperately needed services for the homeless to Chula Vista.