Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait: From sweetheart deals to pragmatic leadership for Anaheim
Posted by Newsletter Reprint on November 5, 2012
Tuesday’s election gives Anaheim voters an opportunity to bring independent voices and a fresh perspective to City Hall. It’s time to shift from a city council torn apart by sweetheart deals and special interests towards a cohesive, pragmatic council that is working together on behalf of all Anaheim residents.
Let me tell you why this is important and who can help me put Anaheim on a better path.
For the past year, our City Council has been dragged down by a debate over how best to spend taxpayer monies. The debate boils down to this: Whether we should safeguard limited city funds for traditional municipal services, such as public safety and civic upkeep, or whether we should give one hotel owner a $158 million taxpayer subsidy under the guise of economic development.
I’m a free-market guy who believes that government’s primary role in economic development is to provide greater freedom – through reduced regulation and ensuring a level playing field for all.
But much like the federal government’s “investment” in the solar energy company, Solyndra, this hotel deal is a gift of taxpayer dollars to just one business. It is political favoritism that benefits one company at the expense of all others. We can do better.
With Tuesday’s election, the voters have the opportunity to elect two people who also recognize that government needs to be fair, and who will work on behalf of all the people. That is why I have endorsed Lucille Kring and John Leos for City Council.
Anaheim is arguably the core of Orange County. We are the destination spot for millions of tourists each year. Those of us who are lucky enough to call Anaheim our home enjoy a diverse array of entertainment and cultural attractions that rival those of any large city. We have beautiful parks, good schools and kind neighborhoods.
But we also have a few problems that need our attention. We’ve addressed some of the issues around pension reform but more must be done. This summer’s protests that arose from the officer-involved shootings point out that even as we work to protect public safety, we need to unify Anaheim and ensure that prosperity and opportunity exist for all segments of our community. And we can create more jobs by continuing to help businesses get up and running faster, by cutting unnecessary job-killing regulations and ensuring that all businesses are treated equally.
Lucille Kring is an experienced public servant who, as the Register described “has a much-needed independent streak.” As a former business owner and city council member, she will bring knowledge and experience to the fiscal issues we are facing. She believes that government needs to be fair and transparent, which is something today’s voters are seeking.
John Leos will do a great job representing the people of Anaheim. After growing up in Anaheim, John and his wife, Shelly, have chosen to raise their family here. Like me, he is concerned about the feeling people have that their city government is not being run by the people, for the people. His public safety experience, his experience with the Anaheim public school system and his service in the U.S. Marine Corps will give the Anaheim City Council a new, independent voice and perspective.
Those of us who live in Anaheim are blessed. We have a beautiful, diverse city that offers something for everyone. However, there is work that needs to be done to bolster our economy, strengthen the city’s fiscal footing and open up our city’s election process to all segments of the community. I am hopeful that the Anaheim voters will send Lucille Kring and John Leos to City Hall to help me accomplish these important tasks.