Campbell is in the heart of Silicon Valley. We should be world leaders in government efficiency and innovation. I’ll use my private sector experience, working with high-tech and Fortune 500 companies, to bring new ideas into government to put Campbell at the forefront of innovation. Best of all, these ideas will not only make our local government more efficient — they’ll bring in increased revenue by improving permitting processes, and ensure improved accountability so that tax dollars are well-spent.
In a post-pandemic world, I will ensure the City has access to secure and accessible digital systems to allow for City business and public accountability, as well as avenues for community engagement.
It is critical that the public is able to comment and actively participate in Council meetings regardless of whether they are held in-person or online.
We don’t need to reinvent the wheel: many nonprofit groups, such as the national organization Code for America, are already in our backyard, bringing private sector experience and talent to support the needs of local democratic institutions.
Yet, many of these organizations have previously overlooked Campbell and the dynamic impact their work could have on a small City like ours. I will use my own network to change that, forming innovative partnerships to build new tools to serve our community at no cost to our City budget.
I will draw on my work with the best and the brightest from academia and the private sector to design and implement an annual Digital Innovation Fellowship.
Funding for the program will come from outside sources such as nonprofit partners. Fellows will work each year to make Campbell the most innovative City in America, with some of the projects focused on creative solutions for government transparency and accessibility.
Campbell Congresswoman Anna Eshoo has proposed common-sense legislation that would allow cities to pair the construction of infrastructure necessary for high-speed upgrades with other critical needs — in other words, to only “dig once.”
The proposed legislation, if implemented, would save taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars. As Councilmember, I plan to advocate for this bill as well as other common-sense technology legislation.
As a small city, Campbell is surrounded on all sides by other small communities, unincorporated areas managed by Santa Clara County, and the City of San Jose. Local residents know we can drive across the street from our neighborhood and suddenly cross into another municipality, though you would never guess it from any natural landmarks. This presents a challenge when constructing new infrastructure, such as what is needed to upgrade our wireless capabilities.
I plan to explore instating partnerships with our neighboring local governments for a business-friendly environment, making it easier for technology companies to build. This would be especially transformative with the implementation of Rep. Eshoo’s “Dig Once” legislation (see prev).
Cities often allow applicants for a large project to pay for fees in advance of processing to allow for the necessary ramping up of City staff. This avoids a bottleneck in the process, resulting in a smoother process for applicants, and bringing in City revenue much earlier in the fiscal year than it would otherwise.
Another helpful way to streamline the application process, particularly for large projects that require the submission of a large number of applications, is to restructure fees to incentivize a larger volume (or “batch”) of similar submissions, which can then be processed in a routine way.
It aligns incentives for the applicant and City alike, allowing City staff to offload some of the management required for complex applications.
I will draw upon my private sector experience to help design and implement key performance indicators (KPIs) and project benchmarks to measure success and ensure projects come in on time and within budget. The City will then be able to release performance to ensure accountability.
Currently, residents and journalists alike must request campaign finance reports from the City Clerk’s office. Posting these online will increase transparency and trust in government as well as free up valuable staff time.
Efforts for online transparency will require no extra staff time because the City Clerk’s office already scans all campaign finance reports and hosts them online — they are simply not made accessible.
I will work with leading, trusted organizations to conduct an audit of City spending at no cost to the City. The report will be publicly released to ensure full government transparency. The audit will be used to identify savings opportunities without cutting City services.
I will also direct City staff, in partnership with a leading firm, to conduct a public finance audit of all investments by the City to ensure we are maximizing our returns. This includes but is not limited to “capital improvement bonds, interest rate, payout timeline, [and] use of funds.”
Some of our regional bodies, such as Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), may require reform at an institutional level. In these cases, only the California State Legislature has the power to step in and pass policy to reform regional agencies. In other cases, the State Legislature may be responsible for public policy efforts that affect the region as a whole, as in the case of FASTER Bay Area, which was introduced as a bill by Senator Jim Beall.
As in the case of FASTER Bay Area, regional community groups, such as Silicon Valley Leadership Group, played an important role in convening regional meetings. By working closely with our legislative delegation, I will help lead on other important regional reform efforts.
I will ensure that updates on Measure O, the 2018 bond measure which sets aside $50 million to be used for a public safety center and library building, are shared with the public and easily accessible, including providing regular updates at Council meetings. In addition, I will monitor the impact on the surrounding neighborhood, ensuring traffic mitigation on residential areas.
Measure O construction will also significantly impact the nearby historic Ainsley House, which traditionally relies on wedding revenue. I will improve the communication of updates between the Ainsley House and the surrounding area.