After thoughtful consideration, I have decided to run for re-election to the Desert Hot Springs City Council. As you are aware, on the November 2018 election ballot is a measure to vote for a rotating Mayor position just like the other cities in the Coachella Valley. This would be beneficial for us.
I am advocating and campaigning for a better tomorrow! I’m running because I believe everyone deserves a fair shot at prosperity, not just the chosen few. Accountability and transparency at City Hall needs to improve. I’ve been waiting for over two months to receive public information.
It’s time we take our City back and select true citizen servants. I’m committed to creating a safe, healthy, and liveable City for everyone with transparent government being a priority.
I come from a humble farmworker upbringing where I learned the value of hard work and education. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree from the Fresno State University with studies in political science, commercial recreation, parks management, non-profit business development and grant writing while working part time to pay my way.
I have always committed myself to the community, advocating for safe streets, healthy neighborhoods, children & youth programs, educational opportunities, new jobs, and fair housing for residents.
My focus remains in making Desert Hot Springs a Health & Wellness City with career and technical skills training so that everyone has the chance to get on board this train of upward mobility.
This is the approach that I will bring as Councilmember, seeking safe and healthy areas for our children and families with equal opportunities for everyone. Fighting crime is a priority to make sure our neighborhoods are secure and liveable for families.
I’ll be advocating for strategic smart growth that considers the priorities of residents. This includes improved infrastructure projects and transportation upgrades to attract new businesses. New policing programs will keep our children safe at our schools and in our neighborhoods.
I will keep our City on the path of upward economic improvements, especially in the new green cultivation industries by continuing to promote capital investment and job growth. New changes need to be made to allow existing businesses to continue growing with lower taxes to create more jobs.
As you know, every city has its challenges and our ability to find common ground to advance our goals is one of the things that make our city unique. But our elected officials must be compassionate to the concerns our residents are facing on a daily basis.
We need to keep pushing if we want to make sure this new change takes place and our vision for the future happens. Please get involved to keep our City moving in the right direction.
Adam Sanchez, City Councilmember
Adam supports investing in our families’ safety, educational and health care needs. Adam brought revenue and jobs by supporting the cultivation industry to keep the City out of bankruptcy and saved our police department.
Under his leadership, we have:
A healthy City budget with a reserve account, Our own City Police Department instead of Riverside County Sheriffs, The Coachella Valley’s best Health & Wellness Center and City pool, Borrego Health Care Services and Urgent Medical Care Center, After school educational programs for children, Youth Gang Awareness and Drug Interdiction Program, A Martin Luther King Day Peace & Unity March, A Flag Pole to honor our service members at Veterans Park, Art sculptures & butterflies on Palm & Pierson center dividers.
Together, we made progress in the City. My wife and family are committed to community service, helping families when their properties are damaged by flooding, heavy winds and fires.
Desert Hot Springs has been compared to Charles Dickens historical novel, “A Tale of Two Cities”. In the novel, Dickens sympathizes with the working underserved while identifying with the political unashamed decisions of government that excludes their participation.
The effect is that people outside the City speak of Desert Hot Springs being a “bad community”. While the media criticizes the City by focusing to its city council problems; no one is offering up what characteristics define a “great community”.
While in college studying political science, I read a passage from Josiah Royce. It read, “I believe in the beloved community and in the spirit which makes it beloved, and in the communion of all who are, in will and in deed, its members. I see no community as yet, but nonetheless my rule of life is: Act so as to hasten its coming.”
This statement was appealing in its suggestion that there is a great way for us to live together; a way that we can treat each other as valued servants. It’s about caring about each other and being cared about. I find that passage inspiring today.
City government representatives are supposed to use their educated minds to make decisions for the betterment of the community that reflect rational and intelligent thinking as well as providing decisions that lend themselves to protect the health, welfare and safety of the people.
There are issues that confront anyone who seeks to formulate a model of a great community under today’s circumstances with City governments. The first is viability. By viability I refer to the capacity of City government and citizens to confront their problems effectively through some type of concerted action.
This happens when diverse social economic groups of citizens meet monthly with the city manager and police chief to discuss the current issues of transparent government, accountability, crosswalks, street signal lights, high school dropouts, small businesses, economic development, finances, code enforcement, police, and emergency services.
Great communities form when people are connected and high standards are set. This connection cannot be one way and should involve conversations that make people feel that their opinions are being considered. It’s about listening, asking good questions, responding and having a visible leadership presence.
In March 2018, a Desert Hot Springs High School Student passed away after being struck by a car crossing Palm Drive near Camino Aventura. The City has no crosswalks or a signal lights at the intersection. The student had to cross the road to get on a Sunline bus but a car hit and killed her in the street.
So, I ask, are we viable in Desert Hot Springs? Do we have the capacity to confront our problems? Does our current City Council honestly care? How many of us know? What’s the consensus about needed action?
I want to return to my earlier quotation from Josiah Royce. I believe in the beloved community. But unless this concept is to be mere poetic expression, we have to become serious with it and make some choices about our community.
Today, these choices are not made within groups that bring their different combinations of preferences to the arena of community decision making. And that’s what a great community is all about. It includes everyone and nurtures an open spirit.
All of this says something about greatness. If you’re not willing to do things that others say are over the top, and you’re not comfortable being criticized for having high standards, then you will drift toward mediocrity.
Now, let's continue to work together to bring more pride to Desert Hot Springs, and show we welcome new businesses, we celebrate their successes, and this is the City for entrepreneurs to invest in with all the room to grow and a community that supports them.
This will attract the right kinds of economic development and businesses, and that in turn will increase our property values and our quality of life.
It’s time for high standards and putting people first to create a great community. It’s demanding. It’s over the top. But it’s worth it. We must summon the courage to stand up and begin living united.
Our city belongs to all of us. Help me continue to lead the way to a new Desert Hot Springs. Let’s keep this in mind as we envision the beloved community spirit of Josiah Royce.
Adam Sanchez, City Council Candidate
Why are you running for re-election?
I’m running again because I feel it is very important that we don’t return to the old ways of running our city to the ground financially. When I became mayor the city was in deep financial trouble and on the verge of bankruptcy. Today, we are in a much better financial situation, but it is very important to me that we stay focused as a city on our finances, planning for the future and providing a better quality of life for our residents.
Which cannabis issue needs to be addressed by the City Council?
Current mayor Matas is killing the green industry investment opportunities by failing for three years to address lowering the industry taxes to be competitive statewide, has slowly amended city cannabis ordinances and has failed to hire professional staff at City Hall to handle new economic business projects. The City has lost millions of dollars due to his inappropriate due diligence and Matas has become a lame duck mayor.
What issues are most important?
The most important issues for me is promoting a “Health & Wellness” image and getting control of our cannabis industry growth, traffic safety and repairing our infrastructure. I refuse to make the same mistakes that were made in the past. We need to listen to the community rather than just believing what the City Council and those with special interest tell us.
What are the issues you feel are important that the public may not know about?
Continuing to pay down our old legal debt from the 2004 Chapter 9 bankruptcy which was filed in December 2001 and putting financial policies in place that will keep the same financial mistakes from happening again in the future. There is a limited amount of dollars available and we need to make sure we spend every dollar wisely.
What challenges does the city face?
The biggest challenge our community faces is affordable housing, more descent paying jobs, a clean image and public safety in our streets, parks and neighborhoods. History has shown us that by not implementing smart planning strategies, the right fee structures and updating our city general plan we will not end up with a well planned city for years into the future.
How do you plan to address them?
I believe that the City Council needs to stop approving projects like a new $8 million dollar City Hall until we have a clear understanding of what we want to become as a community. I will continue to push an agenda that makes sure that projects will pay for themselves. With a supportive council, I would lower the cannabis taxes to attract new investments and focus on infrastructure along with quality of life projects for our community.
How do you intend to communicate with the constituents you represent?
I've been communicating with the public through social media and by visiting with all local community groups, businesses and residents regularly.
What is the primary role of local government?
The most important role for local government is to provide a community that is transparent, accountable and functions properly. Residents should feel proud and also feel secure in their community. Government should never be a burden to the public.