Over the last two years I have had experience working with Uptown Whittier organizations and believe that we need to build a stronger sustainable economy, by supporting our merchants with the Uptown Streetscape Plan.
I personally collected signatures from almost 50 Uptown merchants, asking the city council to move forward with implementing the plan. Funds are being invested in a $15 million parking structure, and not on our streets. We currently have a parking structure on Bright Ave. that is rarely used and can use some new lights, a little TLC and we can opt to have extended hours, past 10 p.m. The savings of these improvements can go into the Uptown Streetscape plan. A parking study will show that developing downtown areas should invest in new parking structures when they've reached 80% capacity of parking, which we do not have. I believe we should pause the current parking structure from being built until after we've had a parking study and use those funds to improve Uptown.
Our constituents want to shop, dine, and play in a safe and clean shopping district. Investing in our streets is an investment in our economy.
Financial Deficit Crisis
I have attended city council meetings for the last two years and in that time I have seen the financial deficit get worse due to increased pension costs. Our city budget needs to make up for the $6 million dollars in sales tax lost from when the auto dealerships left Whittier Boulevard.
A big contributor to the deficit is a financial deficit crisis due to CalPERS, our state's pension system.
The financial deficit crisis will continue to grow if we do not invest in our community, to collect more sales tax from successful businesses and make process in city hall more efficient for future economic development.
Learn more about the Measure W, a potential 0.75% sales tax increase for the city of Whittier.