For the last month, the candidates for the two open spots on the San Clemente City Council have discussed various issues facing the city. This week, they sum up what they’ve said and make a pitch for the votes of the city.
Why should voters choose you to help guide San Clemente for the next four years?
David Clegg: I practice traditional fiscal conservative values in both my personal and business life. I believe that water conservation should not be punished by voting in higher rates for residents as we recently experienced.
As a resident and property owner in San Clemente for over 12 years, I believe that controlled and sustainable business growth can provide tax relief to residents while also improving the beauty of our community.
I hold a bachelor’s of science in Business Administration and am now retired after a successful career of over 30 years with VF Corporation. My many years of experience in all aspects of business management, combined with the current management of my real estate investments, makes me uniquely qualified to assist in guiding the City of San Clemente. I will work to strike a balance that manages our growth and development while concurrently improving sustainable local job opportunities and the economy of our community overall.
I will work to maintain the beauty of our Village by the Sea community by promoting improved beach maintenance, benefiting residents and visitors alike.
As an outsider to the local political scene, my leadership is not affected by any outside influences. My sole allegiance is to the residents and community of San Clemente.
Jim Dahl: During the next four years, as we emerge from one of the worst economic times in American history, I will concentrate my efforts on a balanced budget. I will work to enhance business opportunities in San Clemente by adding new businesses with new jobs. Public Safety will be high on my list. High quality Fire/Paramedic Rescue and Police Services are very important to our community. A safe community will always be a productive community. Historic Preservation and protection of historic structures is high on my list. The completion of the City General Plan and its elements with code and zoning ordinances is in the works and I will work towards its completion. Courtney’s SandCastle Phase II at Vista Hermosa Sports Park and the Ole Hansen Beach Club will be nearing completion. Beach Sand replenishment, including working with the Army Corps of Engineers to restore our shore is also high on my list. Transportation is important, with completion of Avenida La Pata and Delrio, and redesign of our freeway and interchanges and the implementation of our Bicycle Master Plan, we will have improved traffic circulation. Together in the next four years we can make a better and more vital San Clemente.
Chris Hamm: What makes me different from the other candidates is that I am from San Clemente. From a young age, I recognized that we have something special. I have seen our town grow over the past 30 years, yet maintain its village character. We must protect that. Developers do not back me; I am running for City Council to ensure our quality of life for generations to come. I have grown up on our beaches and in our schools. As your Councilmember I will maintain our open space. I will continue to connect our community through trails and paseos. I will vote for traffic solutions that work for San Clemente. As a firefighter in town, I know the unique public safety issues facing us; I will make public safety a top priority. As a fiscal conservative I will maintain a balanced budget. Two years ago I was appointed to the General Plan Advisory Committee by City Council. I have worked tirelessly with other city leaders to help write the document that will guide our town for decades to come. A vote for me is a vote for San Clemente. For more information on my campaign visit electchrishamm.com.
Mike Mortenson: I offer fresh perspectives, new ideas and a representative voice that’s currently absent from City Council. I will provide practical, common-sense leadership that unites our community. My decisions will always be based on each issue’s individual merits, with thorough and fair analysis given to all sides.
As a fiscal conservative, I will ensure that San Clemente runs efficiently while providing the highest levels of service to our residents. We need to secure San Clemente’s long-term financial health by supporting our local merchants and businesses.
As a husband and father, I understand the importance of making San Clemente as safe as possible. I promise to work diligently with our public safety agencies and residents to make San Clemente even safer for all.
As a life-long surfer, protecting our beaches and ocean is absolute must which is why I will support water quality improvement programs and will work toward replenishing our beach sand in a way that won’t interfere with our biological resources and surf breaks.
Finally, I support preserving San Clemente’s surf village character by supporting investment in our village, strengthening our local merchants and businesses, and encouraging investment in and adaptive reuse of our historical sites and districts.
1 Robert “Bob” Baker:
Our top priority must be residents first… not the interests of out of town developers.
During my four years in office I have helped stop over-development and traffic gridlock from ruining our quality of life. I voted for smart development projects like Target, Courtney’s Sandcastle, our new affordable senior housing project and the new Ralph’s.
I will continue to work against allowing the Toll Road to end at Avenida Pico. The Toll Road’s “segmented approach” that councilmember Jim Dahl voted in favor of will be a disaster for Talega homes near its terminus.
I have always voted to keep our fiscal house in order. The city currently has the highest bond rating possible. Let’s keep it. Special interests, developers and PACs will try to influence this election by throwing money at other candidates. I didn’t accept campaign contributions of more than $99 in 2008 and I won’t in 2012.
I have faced the difficult questions placed before me without showing favoritism. I have proven that I am willing to do what is right for our City. I did what I told you I would do four years ago. I promise to keep doing it for four more.