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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

And there are other candidates 

As you know, I've written a bit about Sam Crowe Ontario (as opposed to Sam Crowe Bird Dude), who is mounting a Sam Crowe for Council campaign.

There are other candidates, and they all had a gabfest not too long ago.

Police and economic development were on the minds of the six City Council candidates who spoke at a pre-election forum Thursday night....

The subjects of discussion ranged from hot topics in the community - such as the contentious Wal-Mart proposal and the sports arena - as well as tried-and-true issues of public safety and schools....

Each candidate at the forum reiterated his or her support for the police and fire departments, and several suggested the city needs more police officers, though a recently completed study by an outside consulting firm found Ontario could improve public safety without hiring more officers.

"I remember when it was safe to walk in our streets and play in our parks," said candidate Josie Estrada. "I am tired of hearing promises from the politicians about what they're going to do about it."

Several candidates said they opposed the Wal-Mart Supercenter proposed for Mountain Avenue near Fifth Street, while others offered a more nuanced position on the project.

"We as a city need to use whatever authority we have to mitigate the impact of any development, whether it's a Sears, Nordstrom, or in this case, a Wal-Mart," said Gabe Chavez, who until this month was a city planning commissioner.

Similarly, the planned Citizens Business Bank Arena drew ire from several candidates, who said Ontario should not sink $55 million into building such a facility in the face of lukewarm public support.

"I've been involved with sports arenas in my practice for many, many years," said candidate Sam Crowe, a former councilman and city attorney. "None of them make money. The ones that do, they go back to the city and say, We're making some money, and we're going to leave if you don't give us more money.'"

From the Ontario Empoblog (Latest OVVA news here)

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