There will be many, many post-mortems written about the just concluded election and the future of our nation under the Presidency of Donald Trump. Clearly, there is much work to do in protecting the gains that have been made under President Obama and resisting any backward sliding. This will be no easy task, but I maintain confidence in the American people and the values we hold so dear. I hope that each of us will make our voices heard in this effort.
Clearly, we must continue the fight at the national level. But as important, if not more important, is what we can do in our own communities. Sacramento is at a pivotal point in its history. We have the opportunity to truly be a great city. We are one of the most diverse communities in the country; how do we take full advantage of that as the great asset that it is? Downtown’s renaissance is happening quicker than anyone could have expected; how do we push that out and catalyze economic development in our neighborhoods while guarding against gentrification?
We have increased our general fund budget reserve from covering one payroll to 10% of the budget; how do we balance being fiscally responsible with meeting the vast and disparate needs of our citizens? We have funded additional positions in the in the police department; how do we insure that they are filled with individuals representing the diversity of the City? We have made great strides in rebuilding our cities physical infrastructure; how can we find the funds to replace 100 year old pipes without charging exorbitant rates for our utilities? This list goes on, but I think the point is made.
I voted for Hilary Clinton and thought she would make a great president. Unfortunately, we will never know. What I do know is that here in our City, we can make a difference. We have made great strides over the past five years, but huge challenges remain. I am honored to represent you, District 5, and be a part of the City leadership and look forward to working with each of you in making Sacramento a city that reflects our values and is successful for everyone. We can only be successful at if we do it together.
In addition to his council duties, Jay works as an independent consultant and policy advisor on education reform and youth policy and strategies.