Dear editor,

Although I was somewhat surprised by the joint press release from the police and fire department of Atasquadero, which referred to my leadership qualities based on my position on measure D-20 (1% tax increase), I don’t mind, but I have to address it in the interest of the voters and the people of Atasquadero.

The press release did not give a clear assessment of my ability to lead and fulfil my future duties as a municipal councillor. It is ridiculous, to say the least, to assume that a candidate for city council must either support a poorly drafted, open tax measure, or enter the race with a comprehensive economic plan for the city’s future. This standard has never been proposed before.

In 2009, the city adopted an economic development plan and if we keep an eye on that plan, we see that it has not been implemented. I am not the only inhabitant who is not satisfied with the city’s efforts to achieve the economic development we can expect.

For example: When the new development moved the owner of the local café, neither the city council nor their elected representatives approached him to find out how he could move and save his business. Instead, he was approached by the mayor of Paso Robles, who asked him what could be done to move him to Paso Robles. E for your trouble, Mr. Martin.
How can I expect more effort from our city after it has satisfied her hunger for tax revenue? I can’t do that. That’s why I don’t support him. Instead, I run to the city council to give a voice to those who expect more.
Measure D-20 is a stain… or this? There is no sunset clause or specific expenditure guidelines. The city assured me that this would be beneficial for public safety, and I believe in it. But where the rest of the money goes, that’s what worries me the most.

The 22nd. On 11 September, the Interim City Council discussed the problems related to D-20 and proposed the establishment of a Follow-up Committee. Bourbaud’s lawyer suggested that the taxpayers trust us. He proposed to use the money to build a new skate park, bicycle paths or a new fire station. Is the skate park a priority?

On the other hand, the load should not be a patchwork. Our city may need an extra load, no matter what. This is California, and this is outrageous. But if I am expected to support such an idea, I need a comprehensive plan for the city on how the money will be used.

Ironically, municipal employees – politicians and firefighters – are asking the taxpayer to support tax increases without a plan.

We need at least one board member to manage our economic development and our needle movement. I look forward to serving the interests of our community and making sure they somehow get the money they need. Many young entrepreneurs and professionals work at Atasquadero for their success and I will support them and their concerns during my mandate.

Nick Mattson, candidate for alderman of Atasquadero.

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