November 2018 Candidate Questionnaire

Bike Santa Cruz County promotes bicycling through advocacy, education, and community
building. To allow our membership and the bicycling community at large to make informed
decisions in the November election, we distributed a questionnaire to each City Council Candidate.

The Bike Santa Cruz County Board of Directors is not making candidate endorsements this year, but will publish the answers to the questionnaire to thousands of Bike Santa Cruz County members on our online “In the Lane” newsletter, our Facebook page, and our website, www.bikesantacruzcounty.org.

We received questionnaires from Capitola candidates Jacques Bertrand, Sam Storey, and Yvette Brooks; Santa Cruz candidates Richelle Noroyan, Paige Concannon, Justin Cummings, Drew Glover, Cynthia Hawthorne, Greg Larson, and Donna Meyers; Scotts Valley candidates Stephany E. Aguilar and Derek Timm; and Watsonville candidates Jenny T. Sarmiento and Steve Trujillo.

We did not receive questionnaires from Santa Cruz candidates Dave Lane, Philip Crawford, and Ashley Scontriano; Scotts Valley candidate Jim Reed; and Watsonville candidates Lowell Hurst, Francisco Estrada, Rebecca J. Garcia, Casey Clark, Ari Parker, and Lupe Rivas.

The Bike Santa Cruz County Candidate Questionnaire included the following questions:

  1. Do you currently ride a bicycle or use any other form of active or public transportation?

  2. What specific accomplishments and qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve conditions for cyclists in your City?

  3. Planning is underway for segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, a multi-use path in the rail corridor from Davenport to Pajaro. How do you envision building the sections in your district as soon as possible?

  4. In many cases, adding new facilities for people on bikes requires parking removal. How would you balance the concerns of people on bikes with those who oppose removal of parking spaces?

  5. Implementing innovative bike treatments like protected bikeways has been shown to dramatically increase bike ridership in cities across the U.S. Do you consider these facilities to be of value? If so, how would you propose to implement them in your City?

  6. Santa Cruz County is consistently ranked #1 or #2 in the state for cyclist injuries and fatalities. What steps would you take to improve safety for people on bikes?

  7. How do you plan to create new safe routes to schools in your City?

  8. What else would you like our members to know about you? Please include how your campaign can be contacted, such as your website, email, telephone, Facebook, or other methods you want to share.

To read the candidate’s answers to the Bike Santa Cruz County candidate Questionnaire, read below:

Capitola City Council

1. Do you currently ride a bicycle or use any other form of active or public transportation?

Yvette Brooks: Yes, my family rides our bikes throughout town.

Sam Storey: I occasionally ride for recreation, however, in my younger days I was an avid road and mountain bike rider.

Jacques Bertrand: I ride for pleasure. In the past my riding was extensive, including road trips and commuting.

2. What specific accomplishments and qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve conditions for cyclists in your City?

Yvette Brooks: As a parent, one of my priorities is to ensure the safety for my child and of all. I believe I will be able to bring forward thoughtful, innovative ideas that will include creating more bike lanes throughout Capitola that residents of all ages can utilize.

Sam Storey: I have previously been on the Capitola City Council from 2006 to 2014 and its mayor in 2010 and 2014.   During my tenure, I supported more bike lanes in Capitola, the Safe Routes to Schools program, and Open Streets in Capitola.  I was also instrumental in preserving and developing the McGregor Park as a skate park and pump track. As a current Capitola Planning Commissioner I have encouraged and supported the addition of bike lanes in and around the Capitola Mall.

Jacques Bertrand: As a member of the Capitola City Council, I have supported bike route improvements, particularly along Park Ave. & safe routes to school, i.e. Hill St.

3. Planning is underway for segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, a multi-use path in the rail corridor from Davenport to Pajaro. How do you envision building the sections in your district as soon as possible?

Yvette Brooks: I envision Capitola being a walkable and bikeable community for all. This would include high traffic areas such as 41st Ave and Capitola Village being more accessible for those not driving. There is a need today to alleviate our traffic problem. Improving bike and pedestrian infrastructure and creating more walkable and bikeable areas as soon as possible would help alleviate some of our traffic congestion while adding to the safety and enjoyment of our citizens and visitors.

Sam Storey: During my previous tenure on the Capitola City Council, I encouraged the staff of Capitola and the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) to work together and give Capitola more authority to help fund and build a bicycle and pedestrian trail on the rail corridor segment that runs through Capitola.  However, the RTC was not amenable to that idea and closely controls the timing of the development of the rail corridor. Therefore, the only way to move the rail corridor pathway forward, as soon as possible, is for Capitola representatives to the RTC to advocate and vote for that pathway to be built as soon as possible.     

However, the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail  (MBSCT) is distinct from the proposed rail/trail corridor.  The MBSCT has already been approved by the Capitola City Council.  It runs off the rail corridor at 47th Ave. on one end and Park Ave. on the other, running through Capitola Village.  That is similar to the MBSCT spur that runs on East Cliff Drive at Pleasure Point.  Capitola should encourage the RTC to complete that MBSCT spur independent of the long-term plans for the rail corridor pathway.

Jacques Bertrand: Cost has become a major hurdle, so in order to achieve success, good planning and design is imperative.


4. In many cases, adding new facilities for people on bikes requires parking removal. How would you balance the concerns of people on bikes with those who oppose removal of parking spaces?

Yvette Brooks: I will balance the concerns of people on bikes and those who oppose removing parking spaces by working with City officials, city residents and business owners to find solutions that will accommodate bicyclists, residents and tourists. Conversations are ongoing throughout our community and I plan to engage residents regularly.

Sam Storey: Balancing the needs for bicyclists and car parking spaces is particularly challenging in Capitola.  Parking spaces in and around the village area is in high demand by residents and visitors alike. However, there are areas of Capitols that have plenty of off street parking and little use by pedestrians and bicyclists, such as 41st, Ave., Capitola Road, and Bay Ave.  I believe Capitola should focus on making these areas safer and more inviting for pedestrians and bicyclists.  I believe this can be done without significant impact on the needs for vehicle parking spaces.

Jacques Bertrand: To achieve a balance start with an open public process amongst all stakeholders.


5. Implementing innovative bike treatments like protected bikeways has been shown to dramatically increase bike ridership in cities across the U.S. Do you consider these facilities to be of value? If so, how would you propose to implement them in your City?

Yvette Brooks: I would like to learn more about these options.  I am always open to learning about new innovative ways to support the bicycle community. It would be wonderful to be able to allow my daughter  to safely ride her bike to and from school without the worry of her safety.

Sam Storey: Because of limited space in Capitola and the high traffic demands, providing protected bikeways in Capitola is challenging. However, they could be considered on 41st Ave., Capitola Road, and Bay Avenue.  Capitola’s General Plan goals include having these commercial districts be more accessible to pedestrians and bicyclists and one idea to consider is having protected bikeways to the approaches to Capitola Mall, Kings Plaza, and other commercial destinations.

The best and most available protected bikeway is the rail corridor currently controlled by the RTC.  Capitola should advocate for the rail corridor to be developed through Capitola and which provides for pedestrian and bicyclists travel over the Capitola trestle.  That would provide a continuous, protected bikeway from one end to the other and going through the heart of Capitola. Measure L, the Capitola Greenway Initiative, is an opportunity for Capitola residents to vote for a continuous protected bikeway that goes across the Capitola trestle.  I support a yes vote on Measure L so that residents and visitors may have the option of going over the trestle or through the village on the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail.

Jacques Bertrand: I DO & THE SAME ANSWER AS FOR QUES 4.


6. Santa Cruz County is consistently ranked #1 or #2 in the state for cyclist injuries and fatalities. What steps would you take to improve safety for people on bikes?

Yvette Brooks: I will improve safety for people on bikes by learning more about Bike Santa Cruz County’s Vision Zero strategy. I am excited to hear the  December report from the Santa Cruz City ad hoc committee and what steps cities can take to make their streets safer for cyclists.

Sam Storey: It is a tragedy that bicyclist are too frequently injured and killed because they must share the road with vehicles.   That’s one reason I feel that a continuous, protected bikeway on the rail corridor is so important. That should be made a priority.  Cyclists should not be made an after-thought in our transportation planning; leaving them to contend with vehicles. Other steps I would focus on to improve bicycle safety are:

  1. To provide well marked bike lanes and protected bikeways where we can;

  2. To strictly enforce the vehicle speed limits;

  3. To promote and encourage more use of bicycles which will remove some cars from the roads; and

  4. Support the development of protected bikeways as mentioned above.

Jacques Bertrand: I would start with public education, something like what MADD did for drunk driving, i.e. social pressure in partnership with law enforcement.


7. How do you plan to create new safe routes to schools in your City?

Yvette Brooks: Creating safe routes to schools is important. I will work with the school district to see what plans are in place and what else should be done to ensure the safety of our children.

Sam Storey: Again, the best avenue for creating safe routes to schools is to move ahead with the development of a trail on the RTC’s rail corridor.  Capitola can do its part to provide safe spurs off this corridor that go to New Brighton Middle School and as approaches to the other schools in the surrounding area.  In addition, Capitola must work with the Soquel Union Elementary School District to promote bike to school days.

Jacques Bertrand: We did a study & we are following thro.


8. What else would you like our members to know about you? Please include how your campaign can be contacted, such as your website, email, telephone, Facebook, or other methods you want to share.

Yvette Brooks: Thank you for your time. I am an advocate for the bicycle community and I  look forward to working collaboratively.

brooksforcitycouncil@gmail.com

Yvettebrooks.com

https://www.facebook.com/brooksforcitycouncil/

Sam Storey: Please visit my website at samforcapitola.org to learn more about me and my positions on various topics.  You may also reach me directly at my email: samforcapitola@gmail.com and telephone:  831-607-1037. Be sure to vote on November 6, 2018, and please vote for Sam Storey for Capitola City Council.

Jacques Bertrand: jjjbertrand@gmail.com / 831-247-6199 / jbforcapitola fb


Santa Cruz City Council


1. Do you currently ride a bicycle or use any other form of active or public transportation?

Richelle Noroyan: I have lived either in or near downtown for the past 12 years because I want a lifestyle that relies less on my car and more on my two feet. I walk as often as I can to work, entertainment, errands and more. I don’t have a bike, but I bought a helmet and have discovered I love getting around town on Jump Bikes.

Paige Concannon: I can not ride a bike at this time, I have a compression fracture in my spine.

Justin Cummings: I used to bicycle a lot, but had two bikes stolen from me here in Santa Cruz and I stopped biking because I didn’t want to keep having my bikes stolen.  

Drew Glover: I love my bike. It is a green fusion-style model with a built-in power generator that can power lights and decorations once I get the electrical system working again. I bought it from the Bike Church and it has been awesome. I am still in the market for a good basket so I can transport my little dog Courage, but when I have time or need to take a break, getting outdoors to bike along the levee or cruise westcliff is great. I am a strong advocate for the bus system, but unfortunately due to its’ inefficiency and my often tight time schedule I tend not to use it as a transportation option. I also have a longboard, but it doesn’t get as much use as I would like.

Cynthia Hawthorne: Yes. I try to ride my bike often. And I use jump bike when I can for errands and meetings downtown.

Greg Larson: I consistently ride a bike to most of my campaign events, meetings or other activities around town. Further, my family members are all avid cyclists, with my 8th grader riding her bike to PCS most days. My wife has been a long-time member of the Santa Cruz County Cycling Club, doing the AIDS ride twice, volunteering for or participating in the Mountains Challenge and Strawberry Fields every year, plus many other local rides (e.g., Tunitas Creek, her favorite) and throughout Northern California, as well as international with other local cyclists (France, UAE). My 11 year old "twice exceptional" son is also a neighborhood cyclist, and we're just gearing him up to start riding across town to 6th grade.

More broadly, I periodically take the 17 Express to San Jose when I can and our family has only owned electric vehicles for the last two years, and Prius' for the decade before that.

Donna Meyers: Yes I ride my bike around Santa Cruz as much as possible and have been a bike user for the 35 years I have lived in Santa Cruz. I use my bike for work related needs and for shopping and visiting. I also walk around town a lot. I was an avid bus user here in Santa Cruz while a student at UCSC and when I worked at UCSC.  We use public transportation when traveling.


2. What specific accomplishments and qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve conditions for cyclists in your City?

Richelle Noroyan: As a Council member I voted to support green lanes and Jump Bikes in our community. I have supported and attended events hosted by our police department that promote safe driving by both bicyclists and drivers. These events have made me even more aware of the need to educate cyclists and drivers about safety methods and defensive driving techniques to avoid accidents.

Paige Concannon: I believe that the multi-use trails will definitely help with this issue.

Justin Cummings: As an ecologist, I understand how our behaviors influence our environment.  We need a community that not only bikes because it protects the environment, but we need a community that is concerned about our consumption of resources and how we work to maximize our resource use efficiency.  I have worked with numerous student groups over the years who strive to not only focus on resource use efficiency as students, but also look at how communities utilize resources and how we can be better as a whole.

Drew Glover: As someone who is an advocate for the environment, sustainability and transportation, I have met with advocates and spoken in support of transit safety and the need to create equitable transit around our city. I am the Director and Founder of Project Pollinate, an organization dedicated to building a strong community around the conversation of sustainability. We have held events that feature information tables with bike advocates and participated in climate actions that emphasize the need for a reduction in single passenger vehicles and increased funding into transportation alternatives, including bicycles.

Cynthia Hawthorne: As a school board trustee for two terms I helped the Santa Cruz City Schools partner on safe routes to school with Mr. Laird and CALTRANS. I also worked with Ecology Action on the Bolt program to encourage biking or scooters to school.

Greg Larson: Given the complexity of local government and the significant challenges ahead, I believe I am uniquely qualified to support viable improvements for cyclists in Santa Cruz. Specifically, over the last 30+ years I have been city manager, environmental services director, or planning director for 5 different cities ranging from Los Gatos to San Jose, as well as a consulting problem solver for two dozen cities the last three years. I know how cities work and prioritize scarce resources.

Based on this experience, as well as my personal and professional commitment to environmental solutions and non-automobile transportation, I believe I am best able to champion bicycle and pedestrian improvements to meet the needs of our community.

Donna Meyers: I have my Masters degree and City and Regional Planning and a working knowledge of biking safety and alternatives, as well as engineering standards for bike trails as I have been part of projects where bike trails were built. My planning background provides a level of expertise related to land use planning, transportation route assessment, and identified impacts through the CEQA process. I am familiar therefore with review of planning and engineering feasibility assessments and can read engineering drawings. When I was previously Director of Conservation at the Big Sur Land Trust I worked on building two Class 1 bike trails near the Carmel River as part of implementing the Carmel River Parkway Program. I also prepared grants for implementing bikeways for the Carmel River Parkway. My other experience is really just by being an avid cyclist in Santa Cruz.


3. Planning is underway for segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, a multi-use path in the rail corridor from Davenport to Pajaro. How do you envision building the sections in your district as soon as possible?

Richelle Noroyan: Unfortunately, the bids that went out to build the first segment of the trail in the city came back higher than expected. The city is going out to bid again and I am keeping my fingers crossed that we get lower bids. If that doesn’t happen, we may have to consider using funds set aside for the second segment for the first segment. I am also open to hearing other options for funding or changes in the project to get the sections built.

Paige Concannon: This will help people to be able to travel, it is a great alternative for the public.

Justin Cummings: I think that we need to best facilitate bike access to connect all communities within Santa Cruz County as best possible in the least amount of time possible.  I envision supporting promoting safeguards against bike theft and also bike storage security for ensuring that people are confident in where they’re storing their bikes.  

Drew Glover: Because the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail (aka Rail-Trail) has been such an important topic of discussion, I have been able to spend time talking to people on both ends of the spectrum to understand the possible approaches we can take as a County to improve transit and make a transit corridor that works for everyone. After listening to arguments for and against the inclusion of a train, I believe that we must move cautiously and intentionally into the next steps of development. To begin as soon as possible, I think we must start developing the pedestrian path as soon as the Environmental Impact Reports have been completed. This will allow people to start using the corridor with bikes and allow for a continued conversation about what to do with the rail. With regard to the rail, I envision a heavily used, accessible electric rail system that runs from Davenport to the Pajaro Valley. Since we have the tracks, even though they need repair, it provides us with a possibility for future innovation and solution-oriented thinking on how to move the most amount of people with the least impact to the environment. That being said, as we continue to formulate the most effective and responsible options to include rail transit of passengers we must have strong, unwavering leadership in making sure that any unintentional consequences are addressed before they become an issue. For example, there has been concerns raised about the possibility of the transport of toxic chemicals, fuels and other dangerous agents by the freight agreement signed by the RTC. In addition to the concerns about what may be carried by the rail, the industry slated to come into Watsonville as a result of additional freight transit has some worried about the protection of the wetlands (some of the last in California) and the potential production of biofuels in a predominantly brown community.

The main concern expressed to me by those in favor of removing the tracks (Greenway) is that they have experienced difficulty in communicating and getting information from the RTC. This is another example of how there must be open lines of communication between our elected officials and the community to build trust, understanding and make sure that the voice of all of the county is represented in policy decisions. I look forward to a vibrant, sustainable and equitable transit corridor that includes an amazing trail and an option for a electric rail system in the future.

Cynthia Hawthorne: As a strong advocate for the Rail-Trail, I will do my part to propose matching funds or other support to make the trail possible. This is a  voter mandated social justice issue as workers are forced further south by housing costs. Safe access to the City of Santa Cruz helps us all.

Greg Larson: Many candidates may promise to do this work if elected, but I have already been doing it. For example, earlier this year, as soon as I heard of the possible detour of the Scenic Trail onto surface streets, I launched an online petition which garnered more than 2,600 signatures in less than three days, forcing the trail to remain in the Scenic Trail corridor. And as of this writing, I am the only candidate advocating for the Scenic Corridor on my campaign web page (www.Larson4SantaCruz.com).

More broadly, I have been commenting on and participating in support for other Scenic Trail improvements from the North Coast through the San Lorenzo River Trestle Bridge. This latter improvement is particularly important for me given my role as Chair of the Coastal Watershed Council, and how essential it is for connecting not only west and east Santa Cruz, but also north and south through the Riverwalk. I might also add that I was happy to successfully champion the striping of the Riverwalk nearly two years ago.

If elected, I would seek to be appointed to the Regional Transportation Commission so I could advocate and vote for completion of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail as quickly as possible, because it is an essential component of our needed regional infrastructure. I will also continue to support the efforts of the City of Santa Cruz to aggressively seek grant funding and early approvals to implement segments of the trail as quickly as possible, despite skyrocketing construction costs due to market demand.

Donna Meyers: I was on the team that envisioned the original concept, route, logo and interpretative standards for the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail back in 1996 as part of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Opportunities Study for Santa Cruz County. I support building the segments of the trail through strategically completing design, environmental review, and engineering in order to ready segments for MTIP federal funding for programmed segments. Because the Sanctuary Scenic Trail also is part of the Metropolitan Transportation Plan and the Monterey Bay Sustainable Communities Blueprint we should also look to Greenhouse Gas Reductions Funds for trail segment construction. The segments can still serve our community as we piece together the system and should be constructed to avoid rising construction costs in the future. For identified environmental impacts I would like to see advanced mitigation negotiated with a focus on habitats that could be improved through mitigation such as riparian areas and wetlands. This would also save money I believe for the segments as they are built and provide some immediate benefit for habitat restoration. The Santa Cruz County Resource Conservation District should be approached for this possibility.


4. In many cases, adding new facilities for people on bikes requires parking removal. How would you balance the concerns of people on bikes with those who oppose removal of parking spaces?

Richelle Noroyan: I think each neighborhood is different and I would do a lot of listening to balance these concerns. Not everyone returning from a swing shift feels safe riding a bike at 2 am or walking several blocks by themselves at that time to find parking. However, if an intersection has had several bike accidents and parking needs to be removed for safety reasons, I would support that.

Paige Concannon: I don’t see how we would lose parking spaces.

Justin Cummings: One thing that would help increase ridership is implementing more secure bike storage.  Currently, most people have to park their bikes on the street, where their bikes are under potential threat of theft.  Santa Cruz has a few places where you can pay a minimal amount of money to have your bike securely stored. If we would like to live in a community that relies more on bikes than fossil fuel vehicles, we need to promote and support people and programs that will make sure that people who ride and own bikes can ride their bikes and store them, knowing that they won’t have to worry about their bikes being stolen and never recovered.

Drew Glover: Climate change is real and already upon us. We have terrible traffic that starts at 2pm because the people who work in Santa Cruz cannot live in Santa Cruz. We are now in a position where we MUST explore every option to reduce the carbon emission put out by the modes of transit we choose and get people out of single passenger vehicles. However, to remove parking spaces without offering an alternative will only impact the neighborhoods off of the main corridors. This will be caused by people will who begin to park there instead. With that understanding, I support the removal of parking spaces if paired responsibly with an increased level of funding for the Metro to expand routes and make them more frequent.

Another crucial aspect is the intentional planning of the City to support non-car travel. We want to support our local businesses and make it easy for people to access them. This means workforce housing, car-free housing and high density development near transit stations and corridors. With this intentional planning comes more incentives to use alternative forms of transportation like the bus and Jump-bikes. There is a proposal now to the City Council to adopt the EcoPass program that has been proven to increase ridership and decrease single-passenger transit in other cities around the country. The shift is possible, but it requires leaders dedicated to making it work.

Cynthia Hawthorne: The tide is turning on bikes vs. cars. Parking bikes safely is a priority and one I would champion. The nature of cars and parking is changing dramatically.

In 5 years we may all be sending our electric cars to park themselves in remote lots while we eat dinner downtown. Or sending our cars to “ drive Uber” and help us pay for our dinner! We will always have bikes. Not so sure about cars.

Greg Larson: This is a societal transition that Santa Cruz should lead. I believe I have the demonstrated experience and commitment to lead in the following areas:

1) Increased use and advocacy for use of bikes by the broader public. The Jump bikes are already introducing many prior non- or only periodic riders to new regular means of transportation, as are electric-assisted bikes more generally; in fact, I would venture to say that we’ve likely doubled the number of dedicated bike parking spots Downtown with their arrival. Similarly, as the only City Council candidate with young kids, I know we must support and motivate the next generation for the needed behaviors of the future; this follows my experience when I developed and ran the most successful large city recycling program in the country, and saw it was kids leading their parents into the behaviors we needed.

2) Incorporate the changing standards into the General Plan, zoning and project approvals. A city’s General Plan is its guide for the future, and zoning and project approvals are the tools to implement that guide. We now need to increase our reliance on bicycle and other alternative transportation from the General Plan through zoning and project approvals.

This work starts best in shared destination areas like Downtown, Harvey West, and commercial centers both east and west, but can also be pursued along corridors as long as displaced parking is not compounding neighborhood parking challenges. We do not want to generate neighborhood opposition to changing modes of transportation.

Santa Cruz should lead in reducing unneeded parking, particularly as it relates to the elimination of unsightly, inefficient and heat-island surface parking lots. New Downtown developments on the horizon create the opportunity to both reduce surface parking and simultaneously increase alternative transportation infrastructure (e.g., EV chargers, bike lockers, lockable skateboard racks, and more). I might add, that several years ago, as a volunteer for the PCS new campus project, I was the first to suggest and advocate for the skateboard locking racks we had found popular when I was Los Gatos Town Manager and built the first LEED Gold library in at least Northern California.

3) Set aggressive targets for the City’s Climate Action Program. I funded and launched this program and hired its first Coordinator (Ross Clark) back in 2007. We now need to set specific zero emission energy targets for Santa Cruz in the not too distant future and then tie not only our General Plan, but our CIP and other plans to meeting that objective. That wholistic systems approach is just what I successfully implemented as Environmental Services Director and Deputy City Manager for San Jose. By doing so, we can create both policy and community pressure for increased reliance on and support for cycling and cycling infrastructure.

Donna Meyers: I would have to consider this on a case-by-case basis. We do need to understand how removal of parking will affect circulation and safety within the location proposed. I would look for solutions specific to the proposed project. Not all members of the public are able to utilize biking as a method of transportation. I do believe we should increase bike storage lockers and bike racks in the City and we should do a direct assessment for those facilities in relation to impacts on parking space reduction or in alternative locations and with property owner involvement.

5. Implementing innovative bike treatments like protected bikeways has been shown to dramatically increase bike ridership in cities across the U.S. Do you consider these facilities to be of value? If so, how would you propose to implement them in your City?

Richelle Noroyan: I do consider protected bikeways to be of value and I see great potential with the rail/trail for a protected bikeway. I greatly appreciate the levee pathway being available as a protected bikeway. I think some of our streets in Santa Cruz could have more barriers for a better protected bikeway. To implement them, I would want organizations like Bike Santa Cruz County to work with city staff on proposals.

Paige Concannon: I would need more information on this.

Justin Cummings: I consider protected bike pathways to be of value.  I will do everything in my power to increase and promote bike ridership bikeways throughout Santa Cruz so we can have a more bike friendly and bike healthy community.  I would propose that we work to identify routes and install protected bike lanes along our major corridors that promote bike transportation along those pathways.

Drew Glover: Yes, I consider protected bikeways and other forms of innovative bike treatments valuable. Not only because they increase ridership, but because they increase safety. Santa Cruz is unfortunately a leader in bike injuries and elected officials must do what is necessary to address and prevent dangerous situations for cyclists. As your councilmember I will work to allocate additional funding to projects proven to increase cycling around the city. This is not a question of “do we have the money” because we have it. It is a questions of “how high of a priority is it” to our elected officials and those structuring the budget or doing our planning.

This must be paired with education. A major issue I believe that contributes to bike injuries is a serious lack of education on the part of the driver. What laws are there that protect bicyclists? When is one supposed to give a cyclist the whole lane? What is the point of all of these new green lines all over the road? These are all questions that I have asked drivers and many of them do not know. It is the job of the City and our elected officials to not only implement innovative bike treatments, but to implement the education needed to make those treatments as effective as possible.

Cynthia Hawthorne: As a rider myself even the green stripes help me feel safer.  But dedicated bikeways are so enjoyable as a rider. Particularly if you have kids or grandkids with you. My dream is for dedicated bikeways for main routes across town not just the river and west cliff and such.

Greg Larson: Absolutely. We must improve all of our bikeways, including more protected bikeways. This starts on regular streets with piloting ways to eliminate the concrete/asphalt seam between sidewalk curbs and auto lanes, often creating unsafe conditions for cyclists, especially on poorly maintained streets. I cite this under issues on my web page at www.Larson4SantaCruz.com.

Further, as Micah Posner will attest, I previously supported the King bikeway as a critical east-west infrastructure, to be matched with corresponding improvements to Escalona. While the Scenic Corridor will also provide critical cycling infrastructure, we must continuously upgrade all of our bikeways including new protected bikeways were possible, particularly on the Eastside and north/south.

Donna Meyers: I like the protected bikeways and benefit from the few that are in place moving around town on my bike. We do not have a lot of room on our main arterial roads in Santa Cruz for these improvements however completing the last bridge along the San Lorenzo Riverway is one step in providing a east-west and north-south route that can then connect to neighborhoods. I would have to rely on bike and transportation experts to help in determining where protected bikeways could be placed in our city.

6. Santa Cruz County is consistently ranked #1 or #2 in the state for cyclist injuries and fatalities. What steps would you take to improve safety for people on bikes?

Richelle Noroyan: Identifying where the most accidents and fatalities take place would be the first step in identifying where more safety measures need to be implemented. More green lanes and signs reminding cyclists and cars to share the road has helped. I would also encourage more safety workshops by police partnering with Bike Santa Cruz County in the schools and the community. I think reaching out to UCSC students and staff on campus would be very useful. Both motorists and cyclists need lessons on how to co-exist with each other.

Paige Concannon: This is a big question, which needs to be studied to improve safety for all bicycle riders.

Justin Cummings: Encouraging more bikership is one thing that will greatly help our community contribute to the reduction in carbon emissions in our area.  We need to promote the protection of bikers throughout the community through a variety of programs. Rather than promote curb side parking, we should have bike lanes border the sidewalk, have barriers that protect bikers, and have cars park more in the street so that we ensure that we protect bikers and pedestrians who use people power for their transportation.

Drew Glover: A major issue I believe that contributes to bike injuries is a serious lack of education on the part of the driver. What laws are there that protect bicyclists? When is one supposed to give a cyclist the whole lane? What is the point of all of these new green lines all over the road? These are all questions that I have asked drivers and many of them do not know. It is the job of the City and our elected officials to not only implement innovative bike treatments, but to implement the education needed to make those treatments as effective as possible.

Another major factor when dealing with any local social or environmental issues is a lack of strong leadership from our elected officials. How can we as a city claim to be successful in anything bike related when we are ranked #1, #2 or even #3 in bike injuries? It is totally unacceptable and we need representatives that will imbue a passion for cycling and safety in the policy they craft.

Cynthia Hawthorne: Again, dedicated bike routes. Safety outreach to riders, especially students. Educate drivers about “ share the road”. Build the rail trail.

Greg Larson: My past experience supervising police, planning and public works in multiple jurisdictions, as well as assisting many cities in setting clear priorities for the future, will enable me to raise this priority for the City, to ensure that we are first and foremost meeting the safety needs of rapidly rising numbers of our population, from kids to seniors, who are increasingly relying on bicycles to avoid the transportation challenges facing Santa Cruz. As with many City problems, it is not one department that can solve the issues; instead, it takes leadership and policy direction from above to get all departments moving towards the same end.

Donna Meyers: I am very interested in the Vision Zero proposal currently being studied by the Transportation and Public Works Commission and what the results will suggest for Santa Cruz. I would also support a community engagement process to better inform residents of these statistics for Santa Cruz and would look encourage seeking grants to produce communication products and signage that targets cell phone use while driving, street signage in know areas of collisions, a Santa Cruz themed bike jersey and bike flags for kids bakes that are consistent and recognizable by all residents so bikers are noticeable and “branded” for safety. We are all trained to recognize brands now so lets design a “safe on our bikes campaign and brand” for our community. We must work together to keep bikers safe and visible in our community.


7. How do you plan to create new safe routes to schools in your City?

Richelle Noroyan: I would continue encouraging city staff to apply for safe routes to schools grants and prioritizing the areas where safe routes are needed the most. Walking school busses have been great at getting less kids to school without cars.

Paige Concannon:  I am not sure a city council member would be the right person to talk to about this subject.

Justin Cummings: I would like to implement some of what was mentioned above to not only reduce car threats through bikeways, but also would like to promote and increase bike share programs.   The more we create a culture around biking, the more we can ensure that biking will be a lifestyle that we can all adopt and value as we continue to develop as a society. We should create routes that increase the width of bike lanes and protections around them, so that children are safer biking to schools.

Drew Glover: Yes! With the implementation of a trail along the rail corridor, students will be able to bypass large areas of road. This will in turn keep them away from cars. With the trail must come serious innovative bike treatments to show drivers where and when school children might be present. This is a very average solution and things that are already underway. So let’s talk about something a little more radical.

We are all familiar with buses and bus drivers. What about a Bike Caravans that meet biking students at a “stop” in each neighborhood (similar to a bus stop) and then accompany the students to school. Each group would have two monitors that would cap the group in front and behind. At each stop, more students would join the caravan until they arrived at school and then do the same to return to their home neighborhoods where they would split from the group at the stop and go on their way. In 2011 Supervisor Eric Mar led a caravan of this style for the Richmond District students in San Francisco.

In other words, to increase safety for students biking to school we must be innovative, think outside-the-box and become dedicated both financially and physically to bike safety. I would be happy to donate at least one morning a week to escorting kids to school on my bike. Would you join me?

Cynthia Hawthorne: I have been active on this issue since 2006. It’s a collaborative partnership between the City  County and the Schools. We have to worked together to help students learn safety rules and choose best routes to school.

Greg Larson: No one Council member can do anything. It is only with a proven track record of thoughtful advocacy and considered collaboration that a member of Council can build or support a majority that provides the direction for change that’s needed. And that’s what I’ll do. As the only Council candidate with kids young enough to need and use safe routes to school, this will be a priority for me.

Specifically, each year, I will ask staff to provide a prioritized list of safe routes to school needs and opportunities, even beyond the available funding. I would then solicit parent and PTA involvement to create constituencies for those improvements. Having previously been highly active in two local schools, and now a third, will assist me in leading this community outreach.

Donna Meyers: The City and its partners should continue to pursue Safe Routes to Schools grant funding and pursue communications and advertising programs for existing and future routes including education outreach to parents and students on bike and pedestrian safety. The City needs to engage with the School Board and individual schools regularly to assess how travel to our schools is working for both bikes and pedestrians. We must assess needs for crossing guards and traffic calming techniques for our local schools and neighborhoods. Expanding Bike to Work and Bike to School days would also be good so our residents can build awareness about these events and how are streets and neighborhoods function with less cars and more bikes. These events really bring home how different travel can be for getting to work and school with more bikes.


8. What else would you like our members to know about you? Please include how your campaign can be contacted, such as your website, email, telephone, Facebook, or other methods you want to share.

Richelle Noroyan: Please know I am always available to discuss cycling issues and would be willing to consider new proposals that make cycling safer and easier in Santa Cruz. We have a lot of budget constraints for the next several years, but I am hopeful with Measure D funds and the city staff’s ability to apply for grants, we can continue to improve bike safety and increase the number of people who use cycling as an alternative to driving.
My campaign website is www.noroyanforcouncil.com and my campaign email is rnforcouncil@cruzio.com and my phone number is 831-439-4125.

Paige Concannon:

paigeconcannon@gmail.com
www.concannoncan.org
Concannon for Santa Cruz City Council Facebook

Justin Cummings: As a professionally trained ecologist with a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, I am deeply concerned with our environment and how we can all work together to promote a better future for ourselves and the next generation.  I am seeking the endorsement of Bike Santa Cruz, because I feel that we share the same ideals around protecting our environment and promoting human well being through health activity. After utilizing the Jump Bikes in Santa Cruz, I became a huge fan because, not only do I get to utilize bikes and stay off the roads, but I also get to have a sense of security that I can bike in Santa Cruz and not have to worry about my bike getting stolen, which has deterred me from biking after having two of my bikes stolen.  If we can promote more ways that we can get people out of their cars and onto bikes, we can promote a more environmentally and publically healthy Santa Cruz community.

Drew Glover: The Drew Glover for City Council Campaign is radically-sustainable and people-oriented. This November we have the opportunity to elect a City Council that is not a reactionary body, but instead the antithesis of reactionary, meaning radical and progressive. We can have a City Council that promotes public safety by taking steps of prevention, not always look to fix a problem after it has already occured. We can elect a Council that represents the voice of the people. A Council that amplifies the voices of the unheard and acts as a bridge to resolve conflicts in the community, bringing people together around solutions instead of polarizing different communities against each other.

Wise words from Dr. King. “We must learn to live together as brothers [sic] or we will perish as fools.”. His words ring true for Santa Cruz and show us that we must organize and mobilize consistently. We must hold elected officials accountable for their decisions and the situations they have gotten us into and elect those we feel truly represent our values and vision of the future.

You at Bike Santa Cruz County make this an ongoing movement and fight for it everyday. We must expect the same from our officials. We must organize the community to continue to push for bike safety up to the election, but just as importantly, into 2019 and into 2020 and on. We cannot just rely on electoral politics to be the change. If we wait every two years to only plug in from August until November, even if we elect people like me into office that represent the ideals of sustainability and equity, we won’t be able to get anything done. We need people engaged, educated and participating in organizing and mobilizing.

As someone born in Santa Cruz, a renter for the past 14 years and a community organizer I understand the realities that working class people face with housing, transportation, public safety and sustainability. I am dedicated to doing more with less; prioritizing our city budget to benefit the public, fighting for strong union contracts, promoting local solutions to address climate change, implementing proven housing and transportation solutions while funding programs that build a stronger, more connected community.

I love our city. I am the President of the United Nations Association of Santa Cruz County, the Youth Program Leader and Nonviolence Trainer at the Resource Center for Nonviolence, the Chair of the Santa Cruz County Poor People’s Campaign, a Commissioner on the Santa Cruz City Commission for the Prevention of Violence Against Women and the founder of Project Pollinate.

Cynthia Hawthorne:

Email: kacima@cruzio.com

Telephone: 831-419-3969

https://www.hawthorneforsantacruz.org/

Facebook page

I have been a member of a women’s Mountain Biking group called

“ The Screamers” since 1999. We try to ride together every week.

Greg Larson: My wife and I moved to Santa Cruz to start and raise our family 20 years ago, and we love the environment and community that surrounds us. However, the challenges facing us our many, and the opportunities few. But dramatically improving our bicycling and alternative transportation infrastructure is one of those rare opportunities, and I would welcome working with each of you to that end.

I am committed to serving our community and believe I have the values we share and the experience we need to get us through the challenges ahead and to maintain the promise that is Santa Cruz. I have reduced my professional work solving problems for cities throughout California so I can focus on solving problems here at home. That is my commitment to not only you, but to my family as well.

I can be reached at Larson4SantaCruz@gmail.com or 831-222-8512. My hundreds of endorsements, including many you no doubt know, as well as the most detailed position statements of any candidate, can be found at www.Larson4SantaCruz.com.

Donna Meyers: I have lived in Santa Cruz for 35 years and care a lot about our community and our neighborhoods and families. I treasure the time I can use my bike to travel around our beautiful town and I would like to see more families and visitors feel safe to move about Santa Cruz on bikes. We have done a lot but I know we can do more and we can continue to fine tune our facilities and invest in new ideas. I am committed to keeping Santa Cruz bike safe for everyone. My professional background is in environmental protection and restoration and I believe we need to move towards alternative transportation modes and biking is a key component of that. Santa Cruz must be a City that can meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals. Please feel free to contact me if you have questions for me!

I can be contacted at donna4santacruz@gmail.com and by phone at 831-535-3979. Please check out my website at www.Donna4SantaCruz.org and I am on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/donna4santacruz



Scotts Valley City Council

1. Do you currently ride a bicycle or use any other form of active or public transportation?

Stephany Aguilar: I ride occasionally with family!  I also use other forms of alternate transportation.

Derek Timm: Yes, I am an avid road bike enthusiast, and I love mountain biking as well in our beautiful County.

2. What specific accomplishments and qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve conditions for cyclists in your City?

Stephany Aguilar: The City of Scotts Valley has received several “Safe Routes to School” grants to provide for bicycle and walkable systems in our community.  Additionally, I serve on the Board of the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG), where we review the Metropolitan Transportation Improvement Program (MTIP) of the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (SCCRTC).  I have worked collaboratively with SCCRTC and CalTrans, via AMBAG, to improve transportation in Santa Cruz County.

Derek Timm: As head of the Scotts Valley Educational Foundation, we have held the Mountain Charlie Challenge for 14 years.  I started as a participant, and eventually became the head of the Foundation. We worked with ecology action to have bike safety events at the local schools and rallies for the Mountain Charlie Challenge.  We created a kids portion of the ride. 100% of the funds raised from the event went back to local schools.

3. Planning is underway for segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, a multi-use path in the rail corridor from Davenport to Pajaro. How do you envision building the sections in your district as soon as possible?

Stephany Aguilar: Although there are no segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail in the Scotts Valley city limits, I wholeheartedly believe that we as a city should encourage completion of the trail and work to enhance, where possible, our connectivity to the trail system.

Derek Timm: Scotts Valley sits outside the trail route, but as a City we have recently secured funding for improved cycling lanes in our City.  I would help with expanding this program in our City as a City Council Member.

4. In many cases, adding new facilities for people on bikes requires parking removal. How would you balance the concerns of people on bikes with those who oppose removal of parking spaces?

Stephany Aguilar: I believe in integrating a collaborative process, from the inception of an idea to the development of plans that involves all stakeholders. It is imperative that we find alternatives to parking requirements, to allow for both bicycles and cars.  For example, where parking was previously prohibited, new parking may be added and new bicycle paths integrated into the transportation corridors, where safely possible.

Derek Timm: Again, in Scotts Valley, our corridor streets have already addressed this concern. I am currently serving on the General Plan Committee for the City, and I have been supportive of bike safety and access in the plan for our City for the next 20 years.  I will be supportive at a council level of continuing this agenda.


5. Implementing innovative bike treatments like protected bikeways has been shown to dramatically increase bike ridership in cities across the U.S. Do you consider these facilities to be of value? If so, how would you propose to implement them in your City?

Stephany Aguilar: Protected bikeways are of great value and these specific treatments should be strategically placed. There are numerous areas where these treatments would be beneficial.  Scotts Valley currently has numerous bike lanes and we have enhanced bicycle safety in the City. Although we have limited areas at this time, to implement protected bikeways, I believe that a protected bike lane on Scotts Valley Drive would be a prime location for one.  Many bicyclists use this corridor, specifically young children biking to the Scotts Valley Middle School.

Derek Timm: I would be open to exploring the ability to implement protected lanes in Scotts Valley the extent it would be permitted in conjunction with our infrastructure and if supported by Public Works.   We do have some roads in town already that are less travelled, and do serve as good access points for bikers, but they are not protected lanes at present.

6. Santa Cruz County is consistently ranked #1 or #2 in the state for cyclist injuries and fatalities. What steps would you take to improve safety for people on bikes?


Stephany Aguilar: We should incorporate a comprehensive Safe Routes to School program that includes a bicycle safety education curriculum. The curriculum should be structured for appropriate grade and age levels and implemented as part of a school-wide or countywide program.

Additionally, the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (SCCRTC) is an exceptional resource for bicyclists. Their web site includes information on Bicycle Service & Resources, along with a map of bicycle lanes, paths and alternate routes within Santa Cruz County.

Derek Timm: I would be supportive of projects to improve bike safety and improvements along corridors, which will increase bike usage and reduce.  I would also be supportive of additional events with the schools to help educate children on bicycle safety.


7. How do you plan to create new safe routes to schools in your City?

Stephany Aguilar: Scotts Valley has garnered many safe routes to school grants that have enhanced alternate methods of transportation and bicycle safety in our community.  I believe that Scotts Valley does a great job of promoting bicycle usage and provides for safe routes to school. I will continue to promote and support these endeavors. We recently enhanced the Scotts Valley Drive, Mount Hermon Road Intersection to facilitate safety for bicyclists and a safe routes to school intersection.  Additionally, we have enhanced Green Hills Road for bicyclists with a safe routes to school grant.

Derek Timm: I will continue in assisting partnership between public works, along with my members of the local community.  This past year, the City received a large grant for this program which was due in large part to collaboration with private industry, and the hope is further funding can be secured in the future.


8. What else would you like our members to know about you? Please include how your campaign can be contacted, such as your website, email, telephone, Facebook, or other methods you want to share.

Stephany Aguilar: I would invite you to visit my web site at:  www.saguilar2018.com.  My web site will direct you to all pertinent contact information.

It is a pleasure to serve the City of Scotts Valley and represent our city on numerous local, regional and statewide boards. As a Board Member of the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG), the California Council of Governments (CalCOG) and the League of California Cities (LCC), I have worked very hard to enhance our transportation funding for our region and will continue to work collaboratively with agencies throughout California to dedicate more funding for bicycle safety and safe routes to schools programs!

Thank you in advance for your kind vote of confidence.  I look forward to continuing to serve the City of Scotts Valley and our region!

Derek Timm: I’m an avid rider, and will be very supportive of efforts to improve bike safety and infrastructure improvements.
Derek Timm for Scotts Valley City Council
www.Timm4SV.com
email:  Derek@Timm4sv.com
Phone: 831.239.9203

Watsonville City Council

1. Do you currently ride a bicycle or use any other form of active or public transportation?

Jenny Sarmiento: I used to ride a bicycle a few years ago. I am the guardian and caretaker of a sister with disabilities. Riding a bike or taking public transportation is extremely challenging. Whenever possible, I walk nearby to do light shopping.

Steve Trujillo: I walk.  Much of my campaign is on foot. My last bike was stolen  4 years ago. When my partner had a stroke, there was no need for a bicycle, and Ed asked me to give his away. I use public transportation when I go to SF.

2. What specific accomplishments and qualifications demonstrate your capacity to improve conditions for cyclists in your City?

Jenny Sarmiento: As an executive director of a local nonprofit, I participated in several committees, including the Healthy Start Collaborative (PVUSD). As a collaborative, we participated in several efforts to provide safe bike routes to school.

Steve Trujillo: The fact that i  was part of the Santa Cruz city school district project zero implementation when i was a board member of the Santa Cruz city school district from 2010-14.

3. Planning is underway for segments of the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail, a multi-use path in the rail corridor from Davenport to Pajaro. How do you envision building the sections in your district as soon as possible?

Jenny Sarmiento: The Watsonville City Council rotates the responsibility of the mayor. The new city council member in my district is next in line to serve as the mayor. As mayor, I would make this one of my major projects.

Steve Trujillo: District 7 is in the eastern zone of Watsonville.  I envision connecting East Lake avenue, also known as highway 152, and Riverside Drive, also known as highway 129, to connect to the Sanctuary Scenic Trail.

4. In many cases, adding new facilities for people on bikes requires parking removal. How would you balance the concerns of people on bikes with those who oppose removal of parking spaces?

Jenny Sarmiento: The City has already identified areas for bike parking. In some areas around the Plaza, accommodations have already been made. I would work with Public Works to identify additional space.

Steve Trujillo: There is virtually very little parking on East Lake avenue except in the downtown area.  And there is NO parking on Riverside Drive , with the exception of the portion that runs from the Buddhist Temple to Main Street.  In both cases, there is room for a bike lanc highlighted in green. In addtion, we need to erect signage that says “ share the road” . some exists in parts of Watsonville, but not along either 129 or 152. That needs to change.  Both of these highways connect to Gilroy, south Santa Clara county and San Benito county.


5. Implementing innovative bike treatments like protected bikeways has been shown to dramatically increase bike ridership in cities across the U.S. Do you consider these facilities to be of value? If so, how would you propose to implement them in your City?

Jenny Sarmiento: Yes, I do agree that protected bikeways increase ridership and reduce injuries and fatalities. Again, I would work with Public Works and other city staff to identify streets that are wide enough where we can install them. I would engage cyclists in our community to join an ad hoc committee to identify the streets and help secure funding.

Steve Trujillo: Yes, they are of great value.  As part of the rail and trail project , i would think they were essential. And, they can be built along sections of 129 and 152.


6. Santa Cruz County is consistently ranked #1 or #2 in the state for cyclist injuries and fatalities. What steps would you take to improve safety for people on bikes?

Jenny Sarmiento: Partner with current City Council member Hernandez, who has been a big proponent of cyclists and pedestrian safety, and others to promote more awareness. In addition to making our roads safer, we need to provide more education to young cyclists at venues such as Open Streets, the Farmers Market, and after-school programs.

Steve Trujillo: First, we need WPD on bikes. There are a few,  but we need them in greater number. The problem is recruitment.  Our police chief , David Honda, says we have 18 vacant positions that we have money in the budget to hire. The sad part is that when we get them trained and ready to work for WPD, they take off to better paying PD ‘s. Another issue is that we don’t have anywhere near enough bike lanes. This is in my campaign literature.

7. How do you plan to create new safe routes to schools in your City?

Jenny Sarmiento: In my former role as the CEO of a nonprofit, I served in a collaborative with the school district and other agencies. I would re-establish those relationships to plan and create safe routes to school.

Steve Trujillo: We can do what has worked in Santa Cruz with safety caravans for students on bikes that follow certain routes to our schools that are published in school district literature, the Register -Pajaronian and online.  We can also provide student cyclists with slow moving vehicle vests on their way to and from school.


8. What else would you like our members to know about you? Please include how your campaign can be contacted, such as your website, email, telephone, Facebook, or other methods you want to share.

Jenny Sarmiento: Jenny T. Sarmiento (831) 239-8458 Jtsarmiento831@gmail.com, FB: Jenny T. Sarmiento for City Council Jennytsarmiento.com

Steve Trujillo: I am a retired bilingual CA public school teacher of 36 years.  I am a healthy 65 years young. I advocate change in that our great city needs a RENAISSANCE.  Part of that is in transportation. Highway 1 is often a parking lot. Our main arteries become them as well during rush hour.  I am currently a city personnel commissioner. I am also on the board of advisors of the Watsonville YMCA. i have belonged to a gym since i was 27. One of my faves has always been the exercycle. I am the only out , gay Latino candidate running for city council in Watsonville. You can reach me at :  831-251-3329, or at cruztbone53@gmail.com. I am on facebook:  Trujillo for council.