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Mountain Watch: Five candidates jogging for a few open up metropolis council seats


MOUNTAIN Check out — Two new politicos are likely up versus 3 incumbent metropolis leaders for a shot at a few open up seats on the town council in the November election with the housing crisis dominating the political conversation.

Mountain Perspective has extensive been viewed as Silicon Valley’s beacon for housing construction, primary in business office and housing development between its neighbors in the north side of Santa Clara County. But with the article-pandemic location in amid fears of a economic downturn, the looming query is no matter if Mountain View can hold up with the housing design growth though also increasing metropolis companies and shaping new neighborhoods.

The council’s a few seats are at present held by incumbents Ellen Kamei, Mayor Lucas Ramirez and Alison Hicks, and their newcomer opponents will be Justin Cohen and Li Zhang. All candidates answered questions in a Bay Region Information Team questionnaire this week, and outlined main issues dealing with the town and how to tackle it.

Kamei, who served as mayor in 2020, reported she is running to “continue to bring my collaborative, balanced and pragmatic technique to tackling the city’s most tricky general public plan challenges” which contain the housing crisis, transportation and infrastructure desires and psychological health and fitness.

Kamei is a Mountain Watch indigenous who has used the past eleven years in the city. She is a comprehensive-time functioning mother and has been in town politics for the past 10 many years, like six as a Environmental Arranging Commissioner, four as council member and a single as mayor.

If elected she hopes to concentration on “providing housing answers for inhabitants at different revenue amounts,” escalating multi-modal transportation and pedestrian choices in the city and enhancing general public parks and open up house.

“The most effective way to deal with any problem is to be daring and collaborative,” Kamei stated. “I am working for re-election to continue on to bring my collaborative, balanced, and pragmatic solution to tackling the City’s most complicated community plan worries like our housing crisis, addressing transit and infrastructure requires, and mental wellness.”

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Mayor Ramirez, who has been on the city council due to the fact 2018, is focusing his marketing campaign on the function he’s carried out to handle the region’s housing crisis. Since his foray in community politics as a member on the Environmental Planning and Human Relations commissions, Ramirez has centered on funding reasonably priced housing, tenant relocation assistance, rent command for mobile properties and streamlining housing production by environment up pointers like the East Whisman neighborhood strategy.

A lifelong resident of Mountain Check out, Ramirez hopes to keep on to do the job on the housing crisis and homelessness though also tackling visitors congestion issues in the metropolis and the COVID recovery. Ramirez is also just one of only two present council customers to vote versus the placement of Evaluate D in the 2020 ballot — which would have primarily dismantled the city’s hire control method — and against the RV ban, along with Hicks.

“Our Council has accepted impressive and forward-wanting land use insurance policies that will meaningfully deal with the housing disaster and issues about targeted traffic congestion and safety,” Ramirez reported. “We are changing suburban workplace parks into thriving mixed-use neighborhoods. By planning for housing expansion in our task facilities, with major reasonably priced housing requirements, we present prospects for minimal- and reasonable-cash flow people to keep on being in Mountain Check out and lower the have to have to commute from very long distances.”

Given that becoming a member of the council,  20-yr-extended Mountain Watch resident Hicks — a city planner by trade –has advocated for far more environmental protections and housing construction to deal with the area’s homelessness and affordability crises. In addition to her experience as a planner and very affordable housing advocate, Hicks has served on the council for four decades such as as vice mayor and has chaired numerous committees, including the council’s inexpensive housing committee which has created very affordable housing initiatives that have served as a design for the area.

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Hicks said her leading 3 priorities are the city’s fiscal and legal liabilities, environmental sustainability and inexpensive housing. She’s most very pleased of her work in championing the city’s motor vehicle-cost-free downtown area and its master options for parks and recreation, as perfectly as her efforts in making Mountain See far more bicycle and pedestrian welcoming.

“I’m running simply because we stay in a expanding city and area. I consider that we have to make that growth livable,” Hicks explained. “I want Mountain Watch to have extra parks and trees, considerable housing and flourishing smaller organizations. My instruction, experience and past 4 yrs on Council are priceless belongings for the town as we face the troubles in advance.”

Also working for council are two new faces in Zhang and Cohen. Cohen did not respond to the questionnaire.

Zhang has termed Mountain Watch dwelling for two a long time and is involved about the city’s good quality of existence, and would like to see the city increase although retaining its great excellent of lifestyle for all inhabitants. She thinks new developments should be suitable with current neighborhoods and that the sum of parkland and entry to merchandise and companies need to hold up with population growth.

Zhang has been a lifelong member of the Sierra Club and Audubon Culture, and due to the fact 2001 has been an lively group chief and volunteer for community businesses like Mountain Perspective Superior School, her son’s Boy Scout troop and the UC San Diego Regional Alumni Club. She has not formerly held public place of work.

“Throughout my education and job, I have targeted on utilizing technological know-how for progressive and breakthrough solutions to our a lot of societal problems,” Zhang said. “I have been a power in bringing all events collectively to make pragmatic answers for very challenging challenges. I will bring my eager fiscal acumen and can function with employees to go on the practice of structurally well balanced budgets for our metropolis, and a extensive-expression view of the city’s finances to ensure continued fiscal wellness.”

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