Over the past few months, promises have been made to fix our city’s flooding issues. There’s no doubt this is top priority. Flooding is a significant problem in a coastal city such as ours.
We must be fast acting and forward thinking.
However, flooding is a complex problem and focus on singular issues is not enough.
I see the big picture and I’m ready to act on it.
1. Flooding is a matter of infrastructure – and we are a city of aging, failed, and faulty infrastructure.
We must adequately fund the necessary fixes to replace our aging infrastructure with new and efficient technology, we must upgrade failed infrastructure with adequate replacement, and we must repair and supplement faulty infrastructure. All of this will cost money and it will take a community working together and on behalf of each other to make this happen.
I am committed to this community effort.
2. Flooding is a matter of maintenance – and we are a city woefully behind in stormwater infrastructure maintenance. Our canals and BMPs are over capacity – not only as a result of recent storms that were followed by inaction, but they are over capacity as a result of years of neglect. We cannot wait another 20 years for this work to be complete. By the time we get to that point in the future, we will need to start the process all over again. It will take a united will to get this work done faster and it will take trimming the budget fat to find the funding to get it done in an expedient manner.
I am committed to funding this work.
3. Flooding is a matter of sea level rise, more frequent and severe weather events, subsidence, and wind tides. We live on vulnerable land. We must face the fact that we will be affected by these environmental issues. For the past four years, I have been advocating a regional resiliency plan, both in my work on the Planning Commission and as a resident of the Transition Area, an area of the city significantly affected by the issues mentioned above. It is essential that the cities look at ways they can partner to make resilience a priority and a reality. Resiliency is a matter of sustainability. We better prepare for extensive land use shifts and expensive solutions over the next decade. And it is imperative we seek additional funding from state and federal sources to implement change.
I am committed to implementing a regional approach.
Our flooding issues are not a one-size fits all fix. All areas of the city are not the same in their flooding-related issues or needs. However, understanding the complexity of this issue is the start of addressing it for all of us for the future.
I am the candidate with the experience to bring change.