Riverside County is preparing for the upcoming election. There are multiple issues that the county is currently facing such as the Riverside Transmission Reliability Project, homelessness, and city debt.
The United States’ local government is commonly known as the hidden government because many residents have no knowledge of their local representatives. Citizens tend to follow the Federal versus the local government without considering the impact that local government has on local citizens.
“I love to serve in the community and because I grew up here almost my whole entire life, I thought this would be a neat way to give back to the community,” said William D. Pearce, one of the candidates for City Councilmen for Ward 7 in Riverside.
The first issue Pearce will attend to is the Riverside Transmission Reliability project the has been proposed to be implemented in Ward 7 territory. This project was conceived more than a decade ago and the plan is to add an additional connection to the state power grid for the city. Riverside does not have enough power plants to meet all local residents’ electrical needs. This project has an essence of potential as it would feed the electrical demand in the area. But the portion that was to go to the city was through wildlife and fire danger area with above-ground towers. There have been several fires over the last couple of years that have resulted in the loss of property and lives.
“The first thing I want to attend is to see how we will be able to change this project and underground it or perhaps change it altogether; emerging technologies have changed the electrical industry allowing this project to be underground,” said Pearce. “This is my top priority because when you are talking about something that could potentially destroy wildlife, the environment, and people’s homes and that is a serious issue that needs to be taken care of.”
Measure Z was an additional 1 percent tax collected which was meant to be used on public safety projects and roads, but instead, the current city council approved a library downtown costing about 54 million dollars without a planned parking lot. Decisions like these result in increased city debt. It will take years to resolve this issue, but analyzing expenditures and making profitable choices will provide some debt relief.
“It is a good idea; no one says a library is a bad thing, but doing things in an expensive way where it actually is not going to help the community because there is no place for people to park. Downtown already has limited parking,” said Pearce.
“I do not think it’s fair to raise another tax or raise people’s electric and water rates among other things to try and cover up for bad planning on behalf of the government,” said Pearce. “The answer is not to raise taxes, but to learn and implement improved financial administration.”
“Based on voter participation statistics, people 25 and under, students, in particular, have very low voter participation rates. I would suggest to look at the issues where you live. You’ll be surprised what your local officials are doing which will affect you much more quickly than to know who our next President is,” said Pearce.
“Local officials vote on things that could affect you the next day; how much you pay for your water, electricity, property taxes, etc. They can hit your pocket within a day or two while things that come out of Washington take years to develop. Get out there and study the issues and let your voice be heard.”