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March 3, 2020 — Primary Election
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Local

City of SacramentoCandidate for City Council, Council District 8

Photo of Santiago Morales

Santiago Morales

Governmental Program Analyst
713 votes (7.19%)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Addressing the growing homeless issue in District 8,
  • Supporting local businesses in Dsitrict 8.
  • Providing educational programs and services to District 8 families.

Experience

Experience

Profession:Program Governmental Analyst
Associate Governmental Program Analyst, State Of California (2013–current)

Biography

 

To My Community in District 8,

 

                My name is Santiago Morales Jr. My parents immigrated from El Salvador. I was born in the heart of Sacramento at UC Davis Medical Center. I grew up in South Sacramento and I graduated from Luther Burbank High School. I started a family at a young age, and I have been married for about 22 years to my high school sweetheart and love of my life. I have four kids; my oldest daughter is a college graduate from St. Mary’s College and my son is a Student at Cosumnes River College. My youngest daughters are a Junior and Sophomore at Cristo Rey High School. I am Catholic and attend St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church on Center Parkway. I am also a diehard San Francisco 49er fan.

 

                I did not graduate from college which is why I have focused on making sure my kids have every opportunity to achieve their educational goals. I currently work for the California Student Aid Commission. This is a state agency responsible for administering billions of dollars in grants to students. 

 

As a Governmental Program Analyst, I am the lead analyst for a $17 million grant program. I work with foster youth everyday throughout the State of California and any foster youth that choose to go to college outside of California. I strive to help as many students as possible. Working for the State of California has allowed me to work with all types of students of different social, ethnic, and economic backgrounds. I am proud of the work I have accomplished with my state agency. I am also proud of the work I did while working at my previous state agency; helping people with the Affordable  Health Care Act, also known as “ObamaCare.” Being on the front lines and at the startup of “Obamacare” was very difficult in the beginning but rewarding to help so many people get healthcare coverage that before were denied. Working directly with our community and providing information about services and benefits has been my focus for the past 7 years.

 

                I had always dreamed of running for a public office, but my focus was on my family and doing the best possible work for my workplace at the time. Like many of you, we work, pay our bills, and just try to provide the best for our families. I would go to church every Sunday, pray with my family, and try to be the best Father and Husband possible. I went about my life; but I became more frustrated with my district over the years. I would give money to the homeless and help people the best I could. But nothing changed when I looked towards our community leaders. I did not see any of them reaching out to the community or being part of the community. Many of our leaders would show their face for media events. Most recently, some of our leaders have forgotten how diverse our district is and only tend to focus on one ethnic community.

 

                I was raised by stepfather who was African American. He passed away in 2003 but he truly was a community servant. Michael “Lee” Parker did not want recognition for any community service that he did. He was Vietnam Veteran and all he wanted to do was help people. My stepfather set a bar and I can only pray to even come close to what he accomplished.

 

This past year something happened to me that changed my life forever. I ended up in the hospital. The doctors were not sure what happened to me. I was admitted to the hospital for about two weeks. This may not seem long to many of you, but for me it was an agonizing hell. I was in constant pain and I was unable to eat for several days at a time. Although I had experienced health issues in the past, this was different. For the first time, my life was in doubt. I reflected on what I had done in my life and the time I had wasted. We only get one life and I was blessed to recover from my illness. I know I can do more to help our community and now is the time to for me to step up and make a difference. I am running for City Council to make our community better, not as springboard for higher public office position. District 8 is more than just the area I grew up in, it is a part of me, a part of my soul. It breaks my heart to see our homeless community grow day by day. Why are our businesses, like Walmart, leaving our community? Not only do we need to keep large corporate businesses in our district, but we also need to focus on our local small businesses as well.

 

Questions & Answers

Questions from The Sacramento Bee (3)

Sacramento County has an estimated 5,570 homeless people on any given night, mostly unsheltered and mostly in the city. What are three things you would do to address this growing crisis? Where would you get the funding?
Answer from Santiago Morales:
I think we need to start looking at other cities and states that have been successful in helping decrease their homeless population. For example, New Jersey created an Affordable Housing Trust Fund that helped non-profit community developers contribute $500 million annually that created jobs, affordable homes. This in turn generated tax revenues for their state. We also need to get giant corporations to reinvest in the communities and in the people they employ. Encouraging large companies to invest in people will create a stronger workforce.
Sacramento has a serious shortage of affordable housing. What are three things you would do to help create more affordable housing in the city? Where would you get the funding? 
Answer from Santiago Morales:
I would support bond elections, this would give voters a chance to approve or deny spending plans at the polls, with approved bonds we could support rental assistance, home ownership grants and home repair programs. I would focus on relaxing zoning issues and development restrictions. Lastly, I would like to see greater tax incentives for housing developers.
The city is now receiving roughly $50 million in new revenue a year from the Measure U sales tax increase voters approved in November 2018. What are three projects/areas you'd like to see the money spent on?
Answer from Santiago Morales:

 

1.   1. I think we need to increase funds to our police and fire services. Residents of District 8 have a strong distrust of police due to recent events in our area. We need to restore trust by creating programs that will encourage more applicants from District 8 to apply to our local police academy. Many crimes go unreported which gives the illusion of lower crime rate for our District.

 

2.    2. We need to re-evaluate the programs designed for our youth in District 8. We need to create after school programs that focus on technology such as computer program coding, etc.

 

3.    3. There are many areas within my District that need sidewalks so that children can walk to and from school safely. Some areas need stop signs, lights, speed bumps. We should not have to wait until there is tragic accident until we finally address the issue.

 

Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

 

My focus will be to help our homeless community, local businesses, and education. My vision is not to just create “Band Aid” fixes but to create long term solutions.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this and visiting my site. I appreciate any consideration for this office, and I hope I get to our serve our community in a higher capacity through your faith in me. Please take a moment to visit my website at teamsantiago.org

 

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