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I was among several candidates that attended a forum hosted by various organizations in the Inland Empire that are concerned about quality jobs and healthcare. We were asked what we would do if elected, and given the region’s booming warehouse industry, to bring good quality jobs to our communities. My answer is below.

Glenda Door Hanger
Glenda Door Hanger (side 2)

Glenda Barillas pulls papers to run for Fontana City Council

Fontana implements new district election system for choosing City Council members

Meet the Candidates for Fontana District 4 published in The Fontana Herald

----- GLENDA BARILLAS

• Occupation: Director of business development

• Political experience: This will be my first time running for office. I have been politically active in the Inland Empire for three years. I first got involved organizing my community and across county and state lines for a national campaign in the summer of 2015. I've volunteered for several different local campaigns since.

• Family information: I have yet to marry or have children, although I have had family in Fontana for almost 30 years and want to start my own family here.

• Educational background: I attended California State University of Los Angeles for a time after first graduating high school, and have recently gone back to school at Chaffey to pursue degrees in both public policy and business.

• Endorsed by these groups: Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO of San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, Committee on Political Education (COPE); Chicano Latino Caucus of San Bernardino County; Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters; United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 1167; California Young Democrats; CYD Women's Caucus; San Bernardino County Democratic Central Committee; San Bernardino County Young Democrats; Fontana Democratic Club; Catalina's List, Progressive PAC. I have also been endorsed by Congressman Pete Aguilar; State Sen. Connie M. Leyva; Assemblymember Eloise Gomez-Reyes; San Bernardino County Supervisor, Third District James Ramos; Fontana City Councilmembers Jesse Sandoval, and Michael Tahan; and FUSD Board Members Mary Sandoval and Jason O'Brien.

Community involvement: Once I understood that all politics are local, I delved more deeply into the City Council meetings, even speaking up during public comments about some of the issues facing our communities. I joined several local organizations and was elected as an Executive Board member to each. I have continued organizing around local issues such as the over-abundance of warehouse development along the Interstate 10 corridor, the redistricting process that Fontana went through last year, and air quality issues -- since our region has the worst air quality in the entire United States.

• Top three priorities:

  • Champion Responsible, Smart, and Sustainable Development. This means looking at proposed building projects from all angles to determine the real impact that they will have on surrounding communities, and the city as a whole, not just now but long-term. To help achieve this, I will take the feedback that I have heard from the community and apply it when voting on re-zoning decisions within the city, or approving projects and policy. Over the last decade, we’ve seen an abundance of warehouses encroaching on our schools and homes in District 4 and there are plans to build more. It will be my job to advocate on behalf of the people that live in my district as those votes come up to ensure that everything is done with their best interests at heart. The city is currently in the process of updating our General Plan, which was last voted on in October of 2003. This sets Fontana’s physical development blueprint for the next 10-20 years, so I will be paying close attention to this particular policy which will be up for a vote shortly after this election.
  • Economic Development. The goal is to increase opportunities for good-paying jobs and support small business creation. When we look at the city, and in particular my District, we lack spaces for professional jobs. We have little to no office buildings, and seems to only be catering to larger scale companies. Small businesses are what fuel our middle class and to shut them out of parts of our city is absurd. I plan to work closely with the City Manager, fellow Council members, Chamber of Commerce and our Planning Commission to see that small businesses have the opportunity to thrive throughout the city. This includes looking at the way we’ve planned commercial zoning (office buildings, retail shops and restaurants -- which could bring more local jobs) in the General Plan for District 4, and allocating resources to building up my District.
  • Increase Transparency at City Hall, and Bring the City to the Community. I would accomplish this by holding community meetings within my District, setting an example that could be implemented in the other Districts. The purpose would be to meet the community where they are to let everyone know, as their Councilmember, what is going on in the city and to promote the type of meaningful discussions that have been missing for too long. This would also be a place for members of the community to voice their concerns or opinions on what is happening in their neighborhoods. In this way, we can create accountability and bring back a true sense of community.