Editor’s note: Mayor Cheryl Maki submitted four points to watch for in Auburn this year.
1: Of course all of us are hyper-sensitive to the problem with wildfires, particularly after the Camp Fire in Paradise. I am going to be proactive and work with our Greater Auburn Area Fire Safe Council, our new fire chief and all the agencies to put together a plan that will make our community as safe as we can make it. We are so fortunate to have a very active GAAFSC, chaired by Kevin Hanley, as well as council member Daniel Berlant sitting as vice chair on that board. They are doing incredible work and we need to help them get the resources/tools they need to help protect our community from catastrophic fire. Everyone in the community needs to be involved. We all need to concentrate on making our property fire safe.
2: Economic development. As you know I am a big promoter of "Think Auburn First." However, if there aren't enough businesses or the right type of businesses, people are going to shop down the hill or online. I still believe that people want to go downtown and pick up a gift, or a new outfit and then have lunch or dinner locally. We just need to be able to provide citizens the ability to do just that. Our new Economic Development director has made a lot of headway getting our little town noticed. However, there is much more to do to fill up those storefronts as well as businesses at our airport.
3: The homeless/transient issue. Our new police chief has his hands full, as well as our new fire chief. They know how important the safety of our citizens are to all of us on the city council. Finding the right resources to provide the disenfranchised what they need is a big job for all of us. However, we are continually working to make that happen. If you have a Facebook page you can see the efforts that are being made every day by our officers to help the homeless and get them off the streets of our community.
4: Everywhere I go and have an opportunity to speak, I am encouraging people to get involved with what is happening in their community. People are so engrossed with the national hysteria, that they don't realize how much more important it is to focus their efforts on their hometown. They might not be able to do anything nationally but they can make a difference, right here, right now!
… Information about the Citizens Awareness Academy put on by the Auburn Police Department, as an example of a way of getting involved. For more information, visit facebook.com/Auburn-Police-Department-CA-176232875813698.
Cheryl Maki is the mayor of Auburn. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.