Presentation and talk before the PBE on April 4, 2012
150th Meeting of the PBE
The Second Speaker was Brett Lee, who also had many friends in the room and is also running for Davis City Council. Brett stated that much of his thoughts are mirrored in what Lucas said in the previous 10 minutes. Brett believes that the City of Davis needs a change to survive the current economic atmosphere and to survive the coming years of dwindling natural resources, like water and energy. He states that he has good solid ideas, like any one else. But, he stated that it is impossible to be all things to all people. He stated that he would approach planning for the City of Davis by concentrating on what he calls The Big Five. These would be the real challenges for the future of Davis. One of these is the Budget. He stated we need to find a way to deal with City of Davis employee benefits, which will eat up more and more of the city budget with each passing year. He stated examples of how other cities are dealing with this issue and stated that we need to learn lessons from how these other cities are dealing with this problem. He stated that we need to build a budget upon available funds, not on what someone says the City of Davis plans to have in the future. In summary, Brett stated that we must adhere to a realistic and affordable city government and not travel the unsustainable road that we currently are on.
Brett then talked about development and how he is not excited about the City of Davis selling off to develop, the open field near City Hall. He feels this is very short sighted. Selling of that open space decreases the quality of life for those that live in the Davis core area around the open space. There are many reasons why it costs $100,000 more for a house in Davis than for a similar sized house in say, Woodland. Because of the environment and the amenities, people want to live in Davis. But, if we do not deal with the budget, all those things that make Davis what it is are going to be eaten away, little by little and we are in danger of losing this unique community. Brett stated the example of the city parks and how funding continually gets cut and how we are closing pools around town, something that many took for granted as kids in Davis during the long hot summers. Brett sees the need for more Senior housing in Davis as the population of Davis shifts to an older population of retirees. Brett stated that he is against peripheral development. He stated that any such development must be community driven, not developer driven and that such development and growth should pay for itself and not add to the City’s cost burden. Brett spoke on how some cities grow "to grow out of their financial problems." Davis should not do this. Brett believes that we need a compact city and it is essential to the future to Davis to grow up, not outward.
Brett stated that the City of Davis needs to provide more economic growth opportunities. To keep Davis what it is, we need a vibrant local economy. And to this end, we must promote business friendly approaches that are in character with our community values and that benefit our community by providing jobs and local revenue.
Brett stated that from the age of 5, he would live in Davis during each summer with his Grandparents. He lived and enjoyed the ideal life in Davis, taking advantage and experiencing the parks, the pools, the bike paths, the small town-local market atmosphere. He knows what the City of Davis has been to the people that grow up here. In conclusion, Brett stated that people should choose to shop and buy locally as much as they can to support the local businesses.
For more about Brett Lee, visit brettfordavis.com
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