Mayor Weintraub’s State of the City Address
On September 16, Mayor Alicia Weintraub delivered the 23rd Annual Calabasas Mayor’s State of the City Address virtually. After thanking city employees, fellow council members, and residents, she mentioned how peaceful protests on policing and race led to our first-ever conversation on race and change in coordination with the Mayor’s Youth Council. She then confirmed how the COVID-19 pandemic remains our biggest challenge, maintaining that “the best days lie ahead.”
Mayor Weintraub acknowledged how city services remain intact despite the pandemic. In addition, the city helped facilitate rental assistance funded by the Federal CARES Act; a $500,000 Open Small Business Grants Program for one-time emergency grants up to $10,000; and a countywide L.A. Regional COVID-19 Recovery Fund to provide loans and grants to micro-entrepreneurs, small businesses, and nonprofits. The city also works with businesses to help them stay open by operating outdoors.
The mayor pointed out the city’s safe community and relationship with Lost Hills Sheriff Station. Through various statewide grants, the planning division secured more than $300,000 in grant funding to complete analysis for future housing opportunities. We continue Woolsey Fire rebuilds, requiring all new buildings to include sprinkler systems more resistant to wildfires. Calabasas comes even closer to 100% sustainability as codes for new construction elevate standards for solar power, energy efficiency, and water conservation.
Home to six of the top 25 companies in the San Fernando Valley, Calabasas holds the highest credit rating for a city our size, thanks, in part, to the leadership of Ron Ahlers and the finance department. The mayor praised our community development department for working remotely and efficiently since the beginning of the pandemic. With the help of the communications department, they updated the city’s website to offer permitting information online. Residents remain better informed through this new website, as well as the Calabasas TV channel and Calabasas AM radio station. The communications department also produced videos featuring Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) teachers and administrators discussing how best to cope with distance learning.
Mayor Weintraub wrapped up her address optimistically: “Tough times don’t last. Working together, Calabasas will continue to build a healthy, safe, and secure future for us all.”