Message from the Mayor
June 2019

Since taking office my council colleagues and I have taken action to address the immediate needs of our city while looking toward the future, ensuring Anaheim remains a city of choice for residents, businesses and visitors.

City Budget Workshops

One of the most important things that the City Council does each year is adopt the city budget. It is through the budget that we allocate the taxes that our residents, businesses and visitors pay and provide for the services that make Anaheim a great place to live, work and play. We make you safe with our commitment to police and fire service. We invest in our parks, maintain our streets, improve neighborhoods, and provide services to the homeless, among so many priorities.

This task involves much input, analysis and workshops at both the community and council level. I appreciate the diligence of our council and community input to determine the best ways to allocate precious resources and determine the services and programs that can be provided by the city.

Half of the revenue for our general fund, our main source of funding for public safety and community services, is from visitors who stay at hotels. Sales and property taxes make up the next biggest portion. We allocate almost two-thirds of the general fund for public safety.

Unlike the state and federal governments, each year we must adopt a balanced budget. We will do that again this year. The final budget is expected to be adopted on June 18 at the final council budget workshop and public hearing.

We can look forward to continued strong budgets in the future. With Disneyland’s $1 billion investment in Anaheim to open Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Anaheim is now anticipating a big boost in tourism and hotel taxes, which combined make up about 60 percent of Anaheim’s annual general fund budget. And, over the next 10 years, we will be taking action under my initiative approved by the City Council in April, to invest $250 million of new city revenue in neighborhoods across the city.

Grand Opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Brings So Much More to Anaheim

It was thrilling to be at the grand opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland. While excitement of the new land builds and more and more visitors experience the fantastic rides and attractions, this also marks the Disneyland Resort’s largest investment in Anaheim since 2012.

For Anaheim the investment goes beyond the tourism impact, which is substantial and could bring $14 billion in revenue to the region’s economy over the next four decades. This type of investment supports our general fund and allows our city to remain fiscally strong and helps us provide much-needed services to our residents and businesses.

I also want to thank Disney for further investment in their cast members with their $10 million commitment to offset the cost of childcare for employees. This is just another demonstration of Disney’s commitment to supporting its employees in their professional and personal lives that includes programs such as Disney Aspire — offering 100 percent free tuition to full-and part-time hourly cast members.

Thank you to the Disneyland Resort for helping your workforce to achieve the American Dream.

IPW Comes to Anaheim

I recently helped welcome more than 6,000 people from 70 countries to Anaheim for the IPW conference at the Anaheim Convention Center.

The U.S. Travel Association’s IPW is the leading international inbound travel trade show bringing $4.7 billion in future travel to the U.S. It is a national showcase of America, where U.S. travel exhibitors connect with travel buyers and media to promote products negotiate future business and build relationships.

While this conference secures America’s position as a foremost global travel destination, as the host city, the travel professionals in attendance will help us to bring millions of global visitors to Anaheim in coming years.

The new revenue from these visitors will help the city continue to provide vital services and programs to residents by paying for parks, public safety, libraries and other community services.

A New Day for Baseball in the City of Anaheim

It’s a new day for baseball in Anaheim as we start work with the Angels for a new, long-term lease and possible new stadium that will keep the team in Anaheim for decades to come.

As announced at our June 4, 2019, City Council Meeting, I have established a lead negotiating team for the city which includes myself as the Council’s representative, and City Manager Chris Zapata and City Attorney Rob Fabela joining me on behalf of the city administration. Our negotiating team will be guided by a goal of an agreement that first benefits residents while also working for the team and fans. I shared more on our focus for the future of baseball in Anaheim in a recent editorial written for the Orange County Register.

In that article and here in my message to you, I want to emphasize again that baseball is a critical part of our vision for the Platinum Triangle. With more than 150 acres of land around the stadium, we have the opportunity to create the kind of excitement seen around sports venues across the country while maintaining the unrivaled fan convenience of Angel Stadium.

Our priority will continue to be economic development with a purpose. Our theme parks, sports venues and convention center are a matter of pride. But their real purpose is to serve residents by generating revenue for public safety, parks, libraries and community centers and by helping us keep taxes and fees low.

I encourage you to read more here on how this agreement will be pursued in a way that must first benefit Anaheim’s residents and neighborhoods.

Anaheim Recognized for Pro-Business Approach

Congratulations to the Anaheim Economic Development Team for its recognition by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Orange County / Inland Empire District Office for the 2019 Community Excellence City Award. This award recognizes the creation of an environment conducive to business growth, business retention, and significant support for economic development and job growth.

In Anaheim, we want to be a one stop resource for business. The city works hard to eliminate the barriers to economic growth so that we can encourage and create private sector jobs.

I believe that small businesses are the heart of Anaheim. Our city is home to more than 20,000 businesses, and the majority of them are small businesses. These businesses touch the lives of our community every day because they provide jobs, support families, provide vital services, and so much more.

As an entrepreneur and small-business owner, I know that starting a business is hard work, and I applaud the sacrifices and risks made by our local entrepreneurs. Our Economic Development Team is committed to making it easier for business to grow and thrive in Anaheim, because we are a city that empowers the American dream!

Anaheim Gives BIG!

At our second annual Big Give, a day where city employees volunteer across Anaheim, more than 250 Anaheim employees, family and friends came together for a day of community spreading out at 14 projects helping veterans, students, women, families and the neediest in our city.

What an honor it was to join with our Anaheim employees and families to make a difference. I was personally involved in helping with a garden project at the new GOALS Academy clubhouse in Anaheim’s ABC neighborhood. GOALS Academy is a transitional kindergarten through sixth grade, free, public charter school.

I am thankful for community partners such as Visit Anaheim Cares and the Anaheim Ducks who provided funding to our citywide efforts.

Visiting OC Innovation High School

I recently visited Orange County Innovation High School, a school where students are provided the opportunity to earn a high school diploma, while gaining valuable job skills and do meaningful work in their community through Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act partners.
OC Innovation High School’s job training programs help students to succeed inside and outside of the classroom. They teach job readiness and provide hands-on training such as paid internships.

I am excited by what this school does for its students as they pursue their futures.

Anaheim Coves Expansion

I invite you to visit our new beautiful Anaheim Coves expansion. We now have another mile of trail for walkers, bikers and horseback riders, as well as a beautiful playground for families.

Parks are such an important part of our community because they provide a place for kids to run, play and grow and a place for all to appreciate the natural beauty and wildlife right here in our own backyard. I believe that open spaces connect our community. The residents and neighborhoods that call Anaheim home are our top priority, so we are always looking to do more for them.

Celebrating Flag Day

What a pleasure it was to join in Anaheim’s Annual Flag Day Celebration, honoring the meaningful significance of our U.S. Flag!