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San Mateo County, CA June 8, 2010 Election
Smart Voter Political Philosophy for April Vargas

Candidate for
Supervisor; County of San Mateo; District 3

This information is provided by the candidate

Leadership for Change

As one of only 15 coastal counties in California, San Mateo is blessed with baylands, hillsides, coastline, mountains, forests and rich agricultural lands that make our county so special. But our way of life is at risk.

  • Make County government an engine for job creation. As the fourth largest employer in San Mateo County, government has a responsibility to invest in job creation to keep people employed and create new job opportunities, particularly in the clean energy sector.
  • Grow responsibly. A recent proposal to develop over 1400 acres owned by Cargill on bay tidal lands in Redwood City could increase the current area at risk of flooding by one third. No additional building in the bay should be permitted.
  • Immediately address the danger of sea level rise. San Mateo County has $20 billion of property and 100,000 lives at risk from rising bay and ocean waters, according to a report of the Pacific Institute funded by the California Energy Commission, California EPA, California Department of Transportation, and the California Ocean Protection Council. Existing levees need repair to protect our future. We need leaders who address the crucial issues, not bureaucratic managers.

Transparent and Accountable County Government

In this challenging economy, it is important that our tax dollars are invested and spent wisely to provide efficient levels of service to all our residents.

  • Review existing County services. A detailed examination of current programs will identify areas where the County can consolidate services to cut costs and still be responsive to the needs of all residents.
  • Streamline County systems. By simplifying complicated procedures and working cooperatively with other agencies, the County can provide efficient service with more consistency, fewer delays, reduced costs and less duplication of effort.
  • Make sure that County funds are effectively managed. The County lost over $150 million in our taxpayer money when Lehman Brothers collapsed in 2008. This failure caused local school districts, cities and transportation agencies to lose millions. Investment decisions must be based on sound practices and better collaboration with the agencies whose money the County invests. Vigilance is necessary to guard against future losses and to deal with the issue of unfunded pension obligations.

Children and Communities

"Community and youth development go hand in hand: a community only prospers when its young people prosper, and young people only flourish in a flourishing community." + John Gardner, founder of Common Cause

  • Expand use of our local schools as community centers. Families and individuals can receive services during non-school hours, creating stronger bonds within families and neighborhoods. Greater use of existing facilities, fostering a stronger connection between parents and schools, can help our children succeed.
  • Keep public safety a priority. Communities can only succeed when public safety is government's first priority. In the next four years, County government will be challenged to keep the range of public protection services adequately funded, especially for children and elders.
  • Support programs like HEAL. The Health, Environment, Agriculture and Local Partnerships program teaches students about science, environmental sustainability and healthy eating through its community garden projects. HEAL combats childhood obesity while highlighting the County's agricultural heritage and emphasizing the benefits of fresh, locally grown food.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: May 17, 2010 16:50
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