This past Saturday, I spotted both Bob Huber and Steve Sojka at the Simi Valley Street Fair. Both candidates had booths and were greeting Street Fair guests and chatting with people interested in learning more about their campaigns. And both very thoughtfully shared a few minutes of their time to say hello to me and tell me more about their efforts at the Street Fair. I hope to have that video available to share this week.
Several weeks ago, I asked both candidates a few questions, both of whom have responded. Today, I’d like to share their answers on Simi Valley development. I asked each candidate the following:
Vote Simi Valley: Do you feel that Simi Valley already is or is on its way to being overdeveloped?
Steve Sojka’s response was straight to the point:
Steve Sojka: No, our City Council has put in place restrictions on development to curb the growth allowed from previous Councils. These restrictions ensure that our “Jobs to Housing” balance is maintained along with and more importantly that our infrastructure is sufficient for the development that does occur. In fact in 2004, I helped pass a 50% reduction in the number of building permits allowed per year from 584 to 292 or 73 per quarter so that we would have well managed growth with the least amount of impact to our Schools, Traffic and Residents. The City Council also has policies in place to create a balance in housing so that 80% of our housing is single family units and 20% are multi-family units so that we do NOT overbuild with apartments and become another San Fernando Valley.
On the same question, Bob Huber provided the following response:
Bob Huber: Simi Valley has matured into a great community since incorporation on October 10, 1969.
The Simi Valley floor is at almost total build out and there will be more and more pressure to build out the outlying canyons. The build out of the outlying canyons should be viewed with caution.
The hue and cry from our citizens is they do not want our beautiful community to become another San Fernando Valley.
The two key gauges to overdevelopment are density and traffic. I have heard from many, many people in Simi Valley since I announced I am running for mayor that they are completely fed up with the growing traffic problem in Simi Valley. Particularly, the complaints are that traffic is a mess in Simi Valley at peak times and on weekends.
The city needs to step up the efforts in utilization of state of the art traffic management and signalization to lessen congestion on our streets.
The bottom line is the city needs to be much more conservative in our future development. At the end of the day it is the people of Simi Valley, through town halls, hearings and participation that should have a major voice in any expansion of our community.
My sincere thanks to both candidates for their continued participation and for caring enough about voters’ interests to share so much so early in their campaigns.
To my readers, I look forward to your feedback. Please feel free to leave comments on this post or send me some email!