Dimitri Rousseau is a man brimming with ideas. Ask him a question and you get a flood of them. And he has experience of implementing his plans.
This is his second attempt to become Mayor, just losing a previous election, by a few votes, as he describes it, to Roman Ramirez. He gave the Chronicles an interview about his candidacy for Santa Ramona Valley Mayor.
Dimitri Rousseau, known to everyone as “Trey”, runs a construction company in the Valley as well as being the Chief of the Fire Department. He also has been a City Councilman and is currently City Manager.
He went through his track record in SRV, which is impressive. He lists a range of proposals that he got through, which he declares were to ensure safety in the city. It is, he says, down to him that there is a Contingency Plan that includes not just the Fire Department but also the Sheriff’s Department and the General Hospital, where none existed before.
He recounted how he has raised money for disaster funds for the city and obtained a Federal Grant for equipment, supplies and training for disasters. This city, he pointed out, has seen earthquakes, floods and, even, water contamination by the crashing of a CDC cargo helicopter.
He has also successfully organized a race track event and strengthened the previous dam. He has, he says, played his part in boosting the local economy and strengthened the infrastructure.
“Trey” is not, however, standing on the basis of what he has already done. He has a range of policies that he would like to see implemented. Above and beyond his primary interest of ensuring that the city can handle disasters and emergencies, his first aim is to establish a TV studio. The purpose of this would be both economic and for entertainment. It would provide jobs but also give the city a vision, for example showcasing our talents.
He also wants to encourage “Walk In Welcomes”, whereby local businesses would host parties on a monthly basis to increase foot traffic.
He attaches importance to a rent cap. He would like to cut taxes for local businesses and owners of more than one property in order to encourage investment in the city, but the rent cap, he insists, would make sure this didn’t lead to exploitation. And, like his opponent Manny Moore, he sees Public Housing as important. He knows of apartment blocks that are mostly empty and believes he can raise money via Federal Grant funding.
He sees crime, too, as a major issue. His solution here is to integrate Southside via such things as BBQ block parties held by the Fire Department, the Sheriff's Department and the police. He also wants to encourage an increase of tourism.
Dimitri Rousseau is realistic about he much he can get done, but he points out that much of this can be achieved using existing departments within City Hall. He says his skill lies in putting together plans of action quickly and in crisis management. Along with the departments already in City Hall he feels he can achieve his objectives.
Will he be able to achieve such a program? His track record suggests that he would give it a good try. But first he has to convince the electors of Santa Ra