Sylvia Munoz Schnopp On the Issues
Issue statements by candidates are quoted from public media statements either direct or edited for brevity.
Port Hueneme is a small city, and without direct access to a major freeway, we lack the ability to attract major retail which brings other sources of revenue. Our city does boast two of the largest employers in Ventura County: Naval Base Ventura County and Port Hueneme and Oxnard Harbor District; their efforts to expand and attract new tenants and business would be of benefit to the city, directly and indirectly through business license fees, business spending and perhaps housing of their personnel within the city. Our local businesses can also receive a boost through a planned tourism approach, with our strongest assets being the Seabee Museum, the Port Hueneme Historical Museum and Hueneme Beach. I support development of a planned approach for this strategy.
Port Hueneme has its own local police force and lifeguard program, which I have supported during my tenure. I will continue to support a local force. We’ve ensured our annual revenue can support the necessary services of public safety for a city our size and have been fortunate to have a good and stable police force. But the cost to support a local force constitutes over 40% of our city budget.
I worked diligently along both sides of the aisle to acquire $2M in state grants that provided shoreline protection during our last beach erosion; created a sense of community by championing new, local programs including beach events, farmer’s market, and “Movies in the Park.” It is absolutely critical to our city and residents that we on the council with city staff continue to stress the importance and process of ensuring adequate sand replenishment along our shoreline. That in turn protects the major assets of the Port of Hueneme, Hueneme Beach Park, Hueneme Pier and millions in infrastructure and homes along this area of the city.
We are almost fully built-out, with the exception of a few parcels of land within our city boundaries. I have supported revenue-generating projects including: Ashkar proposed development along Victoria Avenue; Hueneme Road remodel/rezoning; in-fill housing; and joining Ventura County West, a TBID special assessment. The increased revenue generated for the city helps fund programs and city services. The housing stock in our city is fairly equally spread out among owner-occupied and rental homes, with a mix of good, affordable and high-end inventory.
I’m committed to finding new, long-term and unrestricted revenues through: developing city-owned property with positive cash flow; creating incentives to fill vacancies that boost sales tax revenue; and providing fast-track solutions to help entrepreneurs and businesses.
The ability to receive reliable, clean and safe water is of major importance to the City of Port Hueneme. Our contract with Calleguas Municipal Water District and the City of Oxnard is essential to addressing short- and long-term needs. We have not only residential customers, but key customers in the Port of Hueneme and Naval Base Ventura County that need quality water supplies. Our effort to provide water depends on the City being able to identify all reasonable sources of water, quality of water, costs involved in providing the water, in order to deliver to all our customers. At the same time, we need to continue providing incentives to help customers reduce consumption due to state restrictions during drought. Our best hope is to create and establish partnerships with others that will deliver not only the water we need, but sharing these costs to make it affordable to our rate payers.
I am committed to supporting our military and families, and proudly served as a lead consultant to keeping our military bases open and local. I created the nationally- acclaimed “Day of Caring” United Way event that is now held in communities throughout the U.S., and branded an AT&T legacy through national Hispanic Marketing initiatives.
I’m a true practitioner of working in unison with colleagues to provide a safe, nurturing environment that fosters creativity and encourages teams to be the best they can be. As Port Hueneme’s Mayor, I voiced concern regarding behavior of a colleague as staying silent was not an option. I initiated team building efforts to develop open, constructive dialogue and identify solutions for working together.