Norma Santiago: I want to keep the momentum going
To the Voters and Residents of District 5, Lake Tahoe:
This is a pivotal time for Tahoe. We are in the midst of defining our future, examining thresholds and coming to agreements as a community on critical issues involving our environment and our economy.
I’ve never been more motivated than by these very issues and bringing our community together to help build a positive future.
The job as your county supervisor is not about me, it’s about you. It’s about doing this job together. It’s about “we” as a community, putting into action the community’s goals through a process of access, inclusion and action.
The job as supervisor involves building bridges, listening to and understanding all perspectives, and finding the right solutions.
I believe in deriving solutions from within our own neighborhoods, from our businesses, our health community, our professional and cultural groups, our teachers and schools and our environmental and recreation representatives. These groups and individuals provide invaluable input.
I have been energized by the community’s input; fully immersed in public participation, and encouraged by the caring and creative solutions already put forth.
I want to keep this momentum going as your County Supervisor. I’ve been able to accomplish so much in the first five months as your elected representative. But, there is still so much more to do.
It will take a full-time effort to protect our county tax dollars for roads, maintain a competitive edge in the tourism marketplace, create new jobs, develop environment-friendly industry, encourage clean energy use, expand transit programs, and finally solve the affordable housing issue.
In the five months I have been honored to be your fulltime county supervisor, I’ve given you 100 percent every day, and have loved every minute of it.
Just what have we accomplished so far? This and more:
n Bringing together citizens in a community planning process that will reflect the vision of the people, not the politicians.
n Finding a new home for Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care and creating a-state-of-the-art wildlife park for the rescue, rehabilitation and release of Lake Tahoe’s precious wildlife with an education center for our community and visitors.
n Building a new and improved Animal Control facility.
n Fighting to protect Tahoe’s fair share of road maintenance money.
n Making sure that if a West Slope casino is built that Tahoe is guaranteed compensation for lost revenues and county taxpayers do not pick up huge impact costs like fire, ambulance, sheriff, and social services.
n Diversifying our economy to create “eco-jobs,” proactive, environmental sciences related jobs and industry.
n Actively supporting energy alternatives; like the new “bio-mass” furnace at South Tahoe High School; and, working with the bio-mass industry to build and create jobs at Tahoe.
n Advocating for a comprehensive Forest and Fuel Plan that focuses on the best Fire Science, that provides for the best timber management practices while reducing our fire danger.
n Developing public and private investment interest at the lake that will bring jobs, housing and address transportation issues.
n Working to bring High Speed Internet service to Tahoe.
n Holding monthly Town Hall meetings to hear citizen’s concerns, to answer your questions, to let you contribute toward solutions.
n Creating a public-private partnership to address Best Management Practices for neighborhoods.
n Meeting with our representatives in Washington, D.C., to assure Tahoe projects are funded.
n Promoting the arts as a viable and meaningful expression for our community and tourism promotion.
n Improving our parks, bike paths, lake access and recreational opportunities.
n Working closely with our seniors, veterans and the disabled for transportation solutions.
n Promoting gateway ideas for beautiful downtown Meyers.
n Meeting with Caltrans to bring Highway 50 improvements that can improve drainage and alleviate gridlock.
n Expanding our recycling efforts, diversion rates, and alternative energies from biomass.
n And, designing a future community/civic center with the city and school district where together we can meet, work, play and celebrate as a community.
There is much more to do. With your help, we can keep this momentum going, accomplish what we want, and plan a better future for our families, our jobs and our environment.
I care deeply about Lake Tahoe and El Dorado County, and have worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life here over the past 20 years. You deserve someone with the vision and grit to build coalitions among the County, City and TRPA so that we can establish a plan to benefit all of us economically while protecting our environment.
Thank you for this distinguished honor, serving you as your County Supervisor. I hope you will vote for me on Tuesday, June 6, so I can continue to represent your best interests.
– Norma Santiago is running for the District 5 seat on the El Dorado County board of supervisors.
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When April 22 or Earth Day rolls around each year, it causes many people to reflect on the state of our environment and consider how to protect our planet.