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Political Philosophy for Kate Mac Kay
Safety Issues and Community Policing
The first safety issue that needs to be addressed is the growing concern over "active killers." It has now been 20 years since the 101 California St shooting in San Francisco. Each time there is a mass shooting, politicians and anti-gun activists start yelling about gun control and stating the same rhetoric that has gone nowhere for 2 decades. It's time we took a stand for a viable solution, a pull-down lock-down alarm similar to the pull-down fire alarm, but in different colors and with a different sound. The cost to install is not much. The new construction cost is insignificant to overall costs. If one had been in place in Conneticut, there is a good chance that just the people in the office would have died. What would those children's lives be worth to save? We do not want to be looking at this in hind sight, wishing we had done this while at a child's funeral. This should be a part of the building code for all buildings that require pull-down fire alarms. I say we set the example for the rest of the nation and institute this requirement.
Speaking of pull-down fire alarms, our schools need to have theirs signal dispatch directly and not rely on a human to assess the situation, find a phone and report it. It is ridiculous that we have this short-coming.
As for St Vincent de Paul's soup kitchen, while we have a responsibility to the homeless in our community, we are not required to allow those that have made such poor decisions in their lives, that they are now dependent upon others for something as basic as sustenance, to negate the good decisions that local business people made in opening their businesses. The store is a welcome part of the downtown community, but the soup kitchen needs to be moved to a location where businesses are not reliant upon walk-up customers. I would like to work with the county to create a one-stop service facility for the homeless that will house, feed, retrain and service their mental and physical health needs: A place where they are comfortable, while they get help to once again become an integral part of society.
Community policing requires that the police get involved in the community and interact with the citizenry, when there is no problem, in order to prevent problems. It also requires participation from the residents. We cannot expect the police to do all the work. It isn't effective that way. It is the responsibility of us, the citizenry, to get involved. WE must observe and report suspicious or illegal behavior. WE have to organize Neighborhood Watch programs and resurrect the old Block Parent program that once existed. Only when there is an ACTIVE partnership between police and citizens is crime impacted.
When the children of this town have a connection to the police officers to the degree that there is a bond, based upon positive interactions and trust, the police will have an easier time enforcing the law. When, while on patrol, in our residential neighborhoods, the police officers can say hello to you and your neighbors, and you know the officer by name, we will have a level of security we have not enjoyed in years.
When the people of our town commit to making the time to be a part of the solution to our growing gang problem, we will be on our road to solving it.
To keep children out of trouble, we have to identify how or why they get into trouble and then address those issues one at a time. While working at Hillcrest Juvenile Hall, I learned the profile of the typical juvenile hall resident involved: a single parent home, usually the mother, wherein the parent had to work extended hours to make ends meet; lack of adult supervision/mentoring/guidance; lack of structure; lack of extra-curricular activities.
If we promote membership in Scouting and other secular civic organizations in elementary school, kids will have mentorship by the leaders and extra-curricular activities, which promote academics and civic leadership. Academics and civic leadership are the antithesis of criminal activity. Let's get our kids wearing scout colors before they even know about gang colors.
In junior high a class that teaches about trades and lets the kids experiment with building and creating with their hands can broaden their career considerations.
In high school, we can coordinate with the building trades a pre-apprenticeship program like the carpenters' union has in other Bay Area cities. Let's give these kids something productive to do with their time and provide them with a path to a career should they not go to college.
We need to extend our current mentoring program from just police to all of the people of our town. We have a young man in town, named JJ, who is wearing an ankle bracelet and working for St Vincent de Paul doing deliveries. He is incredibly bright and articulate. He was able to hold his own in a discussion on case law. He needs a lawyer as a mentor. There are more like him out there. Are YOU able to mentor a young person like him a couple hours a week?
It is our responsibility as a community to make sure these kids have adults in their lives that are a positive influence. It is our responsibility to step up and help our neighbors raise their kids while they are busy working 2-3-4 jobs to make ends meet. In the end, we all benefit.
We need to increase the size of our department, to the national average of 2.5 officers per 1000 residents. We are at about 83 sworn officers now, but at a ratio of 2.5 per 1000, we should be at 166 sworn officers. In order to double our police force, we need funds. I will address my revenue generating plans in another section, but there are secondary, as well as tertiary issues to address as well. Second is cost cutting/efficiency and tertiary is retention or lack thereof.
Efficiency: This is the 21st Century; we should not be pushing papers when we can go almost completely digital. The only physical documents processed, should be the ones where a "wet signature" is required.
There should be a laptop at the front desk, secured to the counter by a security tether, so that when an online report needs to be made, the officer at the desk can slide the laptop to the customer, with the page open to the reporting section. The officer should offer to help guide the citizen through it. Every person who comes in that door needs to feel that they are so important that we have pulled out all the stops for him or her. If we send someone away, we risk losing data on what crimes are happening where in our town, when the person that was sent away, feels helpless and doesn't go home to get online or goes home to a home without internet access, feeling slighted by a lack of response by the police.
Having state of the art equipment is key to efficiency. We need to ensure we give our department the tools and training they need to be successful.
Retention: We are down 7 officers right now and at an almost 10% turnover this year, we have to address the problem that is driving our officers away. It is my understanding that by the end of the year, we will be down by 9. It is important that every city employee feel valued. It is important that every employee feel an intrinsic value to working here. As a management major, I know that when turnover is high, we need to look first at management and second the structural processes of the department. I would initiate an investigation, conducted by personnel from outside the department, as to the root cause of the turnovers and then address those issues swiftly. We have to care about the human side of this issue, but even if you are not inclined to do so, note that it costs approximately $250,000 to train a sworn peace officer. 9 x 250k= $2,250,000. How long can we afford to keep that up?
Greening of South City
Instituting incentives and streamlining processing for the planning and permitting of carbon neutral, self-contained, ultra-green buildings such as Seattle's Silver Bullitt will ensure that we are heading toward a sustainable future.
Another nice addition to our city would be buildings such as the Centennial Building in San Francisco where we could have 30+ stories of housing, for sale, not rent, above retail and parking floors. No units in the micro-size, but offer the streamlined processing and other incentives if the builder sets aside units for affordable housing for locals.
We need a water reclamation program wherein we collect storm drain waters and use them to water medians, golf-courses, and other areas that we appreciate with our eyes and not touch.
Our lawn areas that do not need to be short, should have tall red fescue planted there. It is a drought resistant, long, no-mow grass that grows into beautiful swirls and requires next to no upkeep. To see an example of this in action, head on up to CSM and take a look.
Charging stations for electric vehicles should be added to our business districts. With all the complaining about outsiders parking in neighborhoods, perhaps we should consider instituting a resident parking permit system and use the proceeds to pay for this.
Become a municipal reseller of Gas and Electricity: Gas: 13M BTU per capita average per year in California, which is the equivalent to 130 therms per resident per year.
130 therms x 66,500 residents=8,645,000 therms
PG&E charge for therms on my bill $0.98782 for tier 1 (less than half at this rate, so the straight average is less than weighted average) and $1.30472 for tier 2= straight average of $1.1463 cost per therm
Cost per therm from a reseller with a 2 year contract: $0.4270 per therm
PG&E cost to consumer + reseller cost to consumer= savings to consumer $1.1463- .4270=$0.7193
8,645,000 therms x $0.7193 savings to consumer per therm= $6,218,348.50 difference in retail prices. In addition to this is the profit margin held by the reseller. SO our increased revenue is over $6.2M
Electricity: The average per capita use of electricity per year in California is 2337kWh.
The 2 year fixed rate for electricity from an out of state reseller ranges from 9.6 to 10.7 cents per kWh.
PG&E rates from my bill range from $0.13230 to $0.35114 per kWh. The average of the four rates on my bill is $0.2362.
The difference per kWh for the lowest PG&E rate and the highest reseller rate is 13.230-10.7=2.5300 cents = $.0253 $0.0253 per kWh (2337kWh)(66,500residents)=$3,931,885.65 lowest profit figures
Average from my bill minus the highest reseller rate: $0.2362-0.107= $0.1292 difference in retail rates $0.1292 per kWh(2337)(66500)=$20,079,036.60
Totals: $10,150,234.15 at the low end to $26,297,385.10
Please note that I did not figure in the profits from the businesses in town. These figures are simply for residential services.
Deregulation is a beautiful thing for those that take advantage of it.
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Created from information supplied by the candidate: September 29, 2013 12:16
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