Laserfiche WebLink
Chispa <br />July 20th, 2021 <br />Mayor Sarmiento and the City Council Members <br />City of Santa Ana <br />22 Civic Center Plaza <br />Santa Ana, CA 92701 <br />RE: Agenda Item #26 Consideration of Ordinance Amending the Cannabis Public Benefit <br />Fund Restricted Uses for Additional Youth Services <br />Dear Mayor Sarmiento and City Councilmembers, <br />I write on behalf of Chispa to express our support for Item 26, amending the cannabis public benefit fund <br />restricted uses for additional youth services. <br />As an organization by and for young Latinxs, this proposal is deeply personal to us and our members due <br />to the positive economic impact this would have on young Latinxs in Santa Ana, who make up a <br />significant portion of this City. <br />Santa Ana was the first city in Orange County to approve the legal sale of cannabis, which has raised <br />more than $55 million in the last 4 years. While law enforcement continues to eat up a significant portion <br />of this revenue, there remains concern over the lack of transparency for how this money is used. <br />According to the Orange County Grand Jury's report on Santa Ana's Monopoly of Cannabis, "it's been <br />difficult to secure specific information over how this money has been used " The absence of transparency <br />over the investment of these funds raise serious concerns, and further widens the gap of trust between <br />community and police. <br />Economic equity is at the heart of this proposal. The City of Santa Ana has one of the youngest <br />populations in the country, but yet our youth programs and services still remain under-resourced. We as a <br />city can do more to invest in the young people in the city. We urge you to pass this change in the <br />Cannabis Public Benefit Fund and transfer funding from enforcement activities to youth services. Lastly, <br />we ask for ongoing community input in the process of creating new and expanding existing, effective <br />programs that best fit community priorities with these funds. <br />Sincerely, <br />Boomer Vicente <br />Policy Director <br />Chispa <br />