Rick Ewald: ‘I know Nevada City; and Nevada City knows me‘
I’m a homeowner living in downtown Nevada City stepping up for my city by running for Nevada City Council.
I’m not (yet) a politician and I have not run a traditional campaign. You don’t see my signs everywhere nor have I sent mailers to your homes. Rather I have walked the streets and been to 980 homes in the last month meeting and talking to people.
You don’t need to be a politician to serve on the council. It takes being prepared on the issues, open-mindedness, dedication and integrity. It’s my guarantee that I’ll work hard to keep Nevada City current and at its best.
We’re so lucky to have such a unique and diverse community that I feel is unequaled. As we go into the future I want to see us keep our small town feel, which includes having the county courthouse functional and stay right where it is in downtown.
I believe the biggest challenge Nevada City faces is revenue sources. We have a valuable resource in the former Grass Valley Group complex that is sitting vacant. Bringing new business to Nevada City would increase our tax base and allow funding for projects badly needed. The proposed upgrading of a fiber optic network in that area would be welcome sign that we are serious. We used to be a prime destination for tourists to come enjoy our parades, explore the wealth of natural beauty locals and just hang around in Nevada City for a weekend. That has diminished and a large reason is the lack of parking in the downtown area. In this regard I support the Spring Street parking structure proposal, but it takes money. New business would give the talented young people coming of age in our town incentives to stay here rather than taking their skills elsewhere where they can actually afford to live.
I also completely support the local cannabis industry. I will work to keep it healthy and help it expand which is an already financial advantage for Nevada City.
Affordable housing and solutions to our homeless situation are huge hurdles we are going to have to address. However, Nevada City cannot go it alone. Mental health support for the homeless needs to come first or providing shelter and housing will have minimal affect. It will take federal, state and county assistance. My fellow council running mate Doug Fleming is very talented in this regard and I wholly support him in this election.
Nevada City has already agreed with the 100% sustainability initiative. I support that goal. In the short term this will require a very careful look at the proposed solar array at the old airport and how it will benefit Nevada City attain it’s goal.
In addition I support the Firewise commitment to fire safety and that it be reflected in the Nevada City Strategic Plan. Along with Nevada City becoming more fire defensible we must also commit to upgrading our cellular infrastructure so that real time information can reliably be provided in the case of an evacuation. I am an insurance consumer advocate. I learned a lot working with the people of Paradise after their wildfire. We need to take that information and propose a concise evacuation plan that saves lives in the case a wildfire happens here. I have valuable professional experience with the difficulty local families are having finding adequate homeowner fire insurance. My insights will be valuable should Nevada City choose to get involved with this reality and how to address it at the legislative level.
I was born and raised in Detroit. I moved to Nevada County in 1996 and have lived in my home on Deer Creek in downtown Nevada City for the last 15 years. My home burned down and I recently completed rebuilding. As a result, I have intimate experience with the way city government works. I’m 63 years old, a public insurance adjuster and consumer advocate. I am also the co-producer of the Earles of Newtown and support the local music scene by booking artists in various Nevada City venues.
I know Nevada City and Nevada City knows me.
I’ll work hard and keep an open mind. My election to the City Council will bring a fresh new perspective to local government. I respectfully ask for your support and your vote.
Rich Ewald is a candidate for Nevada City City Council.
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