Safe Mountain View combined fun and civic engagement with our 2016 Cake with the Candidates Forum. We were honored to celebrate Safe Mountain View’s 3rd birthday with our supporters and talk with 5 of Mountain View’s City Council Candidates. It is early in the Mountain View election season and it was good to hear the candidates’ enthusiasm about making Mountain View a better, safer place for residents to get around without needing a car.
First up was Lucas Ramirez who prefaced his discussion with the fact that housing affordability was his main issue. He then discussed his experience bike commuting, his understanding of the way the city operates and how he’d address several issues with safer streets. He told us how he and his grandfather collected signatures from their neighbors to apply for traffic calming on their street- an arduous process he’d like to improve. Unfortunately, traffic calming was denied because, even though a majority of residents wanted a safer street, and people were speeding down the street, not enough were speeding enough. Find out more about Lucas’ campaign here: https://www.ramirezforcouncil.com
Margaret Abe-Koga was next up. As a former City Council member for two terms, she was on the Council when the General Plan and latest Precise Plans were adopted, including many designs for safer streets, including protected bike lanes and complete streets. A Peninsula native, Margaret has a long history in public service. She would like to continue to help the city carry out the improvements she helped shape in the General Plan. She likes the Shoreline Corridor plans for protected bike lanes and bridge for walking and cycling over 101 at Terra Bella. Find out more about Margaret at her web site: http://www.mak4council.com
Lisa Matichak was our third candidate of the afternoon. Lisa is a 17 year resident of Mountain View who became involved in improving Mountain View when she helped form the Wagon Wheel Neighborhood Association in 2008. She is a strong advocate of people getting involved and making their voices heard about issues in their community. In addition to her community work, Lisa has been a member of the Mountain View Environmental Planning Commission since 2010. Find out more about Lisa on her web site: http://www.lisaforcouncil.com
Chris Clark is running as an incumbent. He is completing his first 4-year term on Mountain View’s city council. He spoke about his focus on bike and pedestrian issues. When he ran for city council four years ago, his campaign focused on biking and walking. He would like to prioritize bicycle and pedestrian transportation over car-centric design. He likes european roadway designs. He sees Mountain View as a conservative city but would like to continue to work on improving the street designs and transportation for the next 4 years. Chris’ 2016 web site will be www.electchrisclark.com, in the mean time you may contact him at Chris@electchrisclark.com.
Thida Cornes was our final candidate of the day. She is a founding member of Great Streets Mountain View; a group that has often partnered with Safe Mountain View on advocacy and education projects from letter writing to Cycletopia and our annual Summer Family Bike Ride. She thinks that the city should be proactive in improving infrastructure for people who walk and bike. As a Parks and Recreation Commissioner she led the effort to institute safe routes to parks, and has worked on ensuring trail improvements. As a Great Streets member she has advocated for improvements on California, Escuela and Shoreline and collaborated on work for other improvements. See Thida’s campaign web site at www.thidacornes.com.
Unfortunately, incumbent John McAlister was unable to join us for the event. You can see John’s web page here: http://www.johnmcalister.org
Thank you to all the candidates and community members who participated. Thank you for your involvement in making the city a better place!
By John Scarboro