Issues

There are many issues that we will face together as a community over the next few years.   Some effect us where we live and work, and some effect (or all) our pocket books and property values.   Here are the ones that I am mostly concerned with, and I would love to hear from you about the issues near and dear to you:

  • Rebuilding Our Public Safety Services
    • Our Police Department went from 116 to 91 officers last decade as we were forced to make budgetary cutbacks.  We’ve come back to 106, but with a population approaching 125,000 we need to stay focused on the rebuild.  We have authorized more officers, but we need more.  A combination of fiscal issues and the difficulty in finding qualified people who want to be cops in this day makes the task daunting.
    • As we grow, we stretch our Fire Department’s ability to quickly respond to emergencies.  We will open a new station very soon in Loma Vista and we will rehab the existing station at Santa Ana and Minnewawa.
    • To maintain our position as the “Safest City in the Valley” will take money to “fill and build”, and smart commercial, retail and residential growth can help fund this need.
  • Encourage Business, Residential and Retail Growth
    • The planned expansion of Clovis Community and the creation of the adjacent California Health Sciences University will present opportunities for commercial and retail growth, along with single family and multi-family housing growth.  A hotel and retail component, long with medical related commercial growth to the west of Temperance will create a regional “go-to” medical and commercial campus.
    • We have done a good job encouraging business growth, but I think we can do more.  A cooperative effort with the Chamber of Commerce and a business development consultant might be in order.
  • Making Sure That No Neighborhood Get’s Left Behind 
    • As we have grown north and east, the Shaw Avenue business corridor and the neighborhoods south of Bullard and west of Clovis Avenues have been struggling to maintain and grow.
    • Revitilization of our older neighborhoods and commercial centers can be accomplished by attracting appropriate businesses into our core by filling voids left by other area “draws.”  Campus Pointe attracts a great many people who attend Savemart Center events.  Hotel and retail opportunities are available to serve this need.   In our older neighborhoods that were hurt by the foreclosure and absentee owner rental home issues can be improved through this commercial growth,  incentives to “clean up” blight, and stricter code enforcement of blighted residential and commercial properties.
    • Our southwest portion of town lacks the number of parks in other areas.  This was the planning thought at the time: your kids play in the back yard and on the streets.  At my urging, we are working with the Fresno Irrigation District to create trails connecting neighborhoods along our canals.  One will be in construction at Peach and Ashlan within a few months.
  • Continue to Strengthen “Old Town Clovis”
    • Old Town Clovis is a jewel, that attracts regional crowds for events and daily business.  We need to continue to do whatever we can to keep this jewel bright and shiny!
    • The creation of a new Senior Center, Transit Center, and Library at Clovis and Third will draw people, and the parking created will help with our many community events.  We hope to finish construction in 2023.
  • I’m interested in your thoughts.  Please email them to me at Bessngr@aol.com.

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