Chris believes that one of the greatest assets we have is our youth, who currently make up a third of our population. Providing youth with positive opportunities for engagement and leadership development will ensure a promising future for Merced.
CHRIS - Merced City Council District 3
Chris understands the success of our local businesses are critical in creating more jobs, improving the health of our economy, and growing our community in a fashion where it is sustainable and the most valuable assets are strengthened.
When asked, “What brought you to Merced? What keeps you in Merced?” Chris with a smile responds, “It’s my Home.”
Chris grew up in a tight knit community very similar to Merced called Perris, California. A place with historic Downtown buildings and a surrounding agricultural industry much like Merced.
When the time came to decide where to pursue his career as an educator within the University of California system, his choice was easy. His choice was Merced.
Chris is an educator, resident and active community member. He has for years volunteered with great organizations in the city of Merced like the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Building Healthy Communities (BHC) and the Merced County Office of Education. As an educator, leader and strong advocate for the Merced community, he is dedicated to giving back, partnering with law enforcement, schools, residents and other community-based organizations to address and solve some of our most pressing issues – organizations and projects like the Merced County Project 10%, a local initiative focusing on increasing the graduation rate in Merced County.
He believes a city that thrives is due to its passionate people. Each individual he has had the privilege to meet has an enormous sense of pride—whether it’s through family, work ethic, volunteering, activism or advocacy—the passion of this city is evident. This love for neighbors and community business owners is what inspires him to give back. When asked about Merced, he says, “It is a city of good people who value hard work, generating a passion for me to create a greater Merced, together.”
While education is an extremely important component in ensuring a strong and innovative economy, Chris understands that creating job opportunities for our diverse community and life-long Mercedians is of the utmost importance, particularly our youth. It is vital we be prepared to compliment UC Merced’s growth and make Downtown Merced a hub of innovation for small businesses. It is essential we focus on providing greater opportunities—such as internships—if we expect to further develop our youth and retain talent from our local community.
Integrating and embracing the economic powerhouse of UC Merced and Merced College is vital to job sustainability, as well as encouraging students and staff to embrace our city and buy local; and working with our city leaders to maintain a balanced budget while preserving essential and much-needed services like law enforcement, fire, recreational activities and other public services.
With shared trust and collaboration, Chris believes that we can continue to grow, continually moving Merced ahead and creating a prosperous community for our youth and our small business owners. Downtown Merced needs a voice with the energy and commitment to advance the needs of our Downtown, such as public safety for families and small-businesses found in District 3.
There are a number of items of unfinished business we have in our city. Chris believes we can find solutions to our problems and make Merced strong by starting here in Downtown! That is why Chris aspires to earn your vote to serve as the next Councilmember for Merced’s District 3.
In order to have a vibrant and thriving Merced for our families, the following three areas should be at the foundation of our decisions. Together we can move Merced forward.
In talking with downtown small business owners, they have shared the pitfalls of the double tax on downtown businesses that impedes new establishments to start and new business ventures to be sustainable and stay open.
Chris strongly believes this policy needs to be revisited if we want to revive Downtown Merced and attract investment. It is vital we create the environment to buy locally. Too often Merced families travel to nearby cities like Turlock, Modesto or Fresno to do our shopping. Revisiting the double tax policy could help not only small business owners but also be a catalyst for workforce development by creating jobs and job training for our local residents and youth.
The growth of UC Merced provides a shot in the arm to the local economy. And Chris’ ability to work with diverse stakeholders across campus will all ensure a robust partnership continues between UC Merced and the City of Merced for years to come.
Yosemite is a destination for millions of people throughout the world. We must be proactive and innovative in supporting our local small business owners to attract those families. Merced should be a destination to and from Yosemite. The hospitality industry, restaurants—as well as needed provisions—are an economic engine We as the “Gateway to Yosemite” should be aggressively developing.
Chris has an established track record supporting young adults in Merced. He helped establish the Merced County Project 10% more than five years ago. The initiative is a partnership between the District Attorney’s Office, Merced County Office of Education, and the University of California. The focus is increasing the high school graduation rate in Merced County. Expanding similar programs along with economic investment can create a vibrant economy to move Merced Forward!
Chris has met many great people going door-to-door to speak with Merced voters. Frequently many have expressed the need to have a common vision for Merced. That common vision includes a welcoming, thriving and vibrant Downtown Merced.
In his time as a resident in the city of Merced, Chris has volunteered with a number of organizations and offices such as: Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Building Healthy Communities (BHC) and Merced County Office of Education (MCOE).
For years, Chris has worked to create a vibrant Downtown Merced; he’s convinced, as goes downtown so goes the entire city. The Parks and Recreation Department will play an important role for the future of Merced. A strong and robust Parks and Recreation Department can ensure parks are open for public events, playgrounds are kept up, and bathrooms maintained.
Chris is also committed ensuring the Merced Police Department has the resources needed to succeed. He is also committed to exploring methods of improving public safety and community relations overall. It is imperative that we make Merced a safer and more stimulating place for all who make Merced their home.
On any given day you can find Chris walking and riding his bike around town. Biking and walking through Merced always highlights opportunity to invest in the creation of a more pedestrian and bike friendly downtown and throughout the entire city for residents, students and visitors.
There are some additional areas that can demonstrate an immediate impact: Expanding bike paths, infill development, graffiti removal, clearing lots and roads of weeds and trash, fixing boarded up storefronts, and making Downtown and parks welcoming for visitors to want to stay longer in Merced.
Together we will make Merced an attractive destination for new businesses, families and visitors alike.
Chris 4 Merced
722 W 18th Street, Merced, CA 95340
Chris 4 Merced
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