Dear council members,
I am sorry to see the lack of civility which has swept through our city. I can only think it is in part caused by the special interest groups and their desire to force their special interest agendas through. It doesn’t matter if it is Santa Monicans for Renters’ Rights, anti-airport, low income housing — they want to win at all costs and aren’t really concerned about anyone else.
I don’t really know how to stop this except by promoting what is in the overall interest of the city and not just one group.
I also believe the city’s desire to have community input has backfired. Complete democracy has its limits and that is why we elect people to represent us. There have been too many community meetings. We have community meetings to debate what previous community meetings have concluded. A very vocal and nasty, but I believe small group of residents (and probably a lot of non-residents) have hijacked our city and believe they are entitled to debate everything. Community feedback is nice, but it needs to be limited or nothing will ever move forward. The city employs experts and hires expert consultants. These people’s recommendations need to be followed. It is time to take back our city and move forward in a direction that the average (and generally quiet) citizen supports.
My few hopefully moderate views are:
• Responsible development which provides good jobs and tax revenues is good.
• We don’t need new housing of any type — we don’t have the water and residential units equals traffic.
• The only thing worse than the airport is no airport — it will save us after an earthquake and we will have LAX circling over our heads everywhere — once it is gone, you won’t be able to get it back.
• Hotels are great — great revenue for the city, they provide jobs (maybe not high paying, but better than nothing) and support local businesses.
• Bike, buses and walking are the way forward — some of the great urban environments do not accommodate the car and are better for it.
• We spend way too much time trying to create parking; parking equals traffic.
• Focus on our beach; what a wonderful, fantastic asset — the best park in the world; I keep hearing about people wanting new parks, why would you want anything besides the beach?
Thank you for your attention.