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San Bernardino Ward 7 candidates share thoughts on city's quality of life, business development

The last of four San Bernardino city election forums sponsored by the League of Women Voters, Just San Bernardino and KVCR took place last night at Ecclessia Fellowship. Ward 7 candidates Councilmember Damon Alexander, Treasure Ortiz and Jim Penman all were present.
Cassie MacDuff
The last of four San Bernardino city election forums sponsored by the League of Women Voters, Just San Bernardino and KVCR took place last night at Ecclessia Fellowship. Ward 7 candidates Councilmember Damon Alexander, Treasure Ortiz and Jim Penman all were present.

The last of four San Bernardino city election forums sponsored by the League of Women Voters, Just San Bernardino and KVCR took place last night.

Councilmember Damon Alexander, Jim Penman and Treasure Ortiz all showed up to the Ward 7 forum.

The candidates discussed quality of life issues and business development with about 60 people at the Ecclesia Christian Fellowship church.

Alexander was elected to the Council in 2020. His focus for the night was speaking to voters on what he’s helped San Bernardino accomplish.

The Councilmember says he’ll continue to support funding for small businesses and help secure affordable housing.

"So let that be the theme of my speech…what we’re doing now and what we’re going to do," Alexander said. "Not what we plan to do."

Ortiz, who has previously ran for public office in the city, says everyone has benefited from business interests, but the residents. If elected, she says she’ll put an end to a “pay to play” culture that benefits outside developers.

"That’s why you get sold out to warehouses, that’s why you get storage units, that’s why you get truck stops in your backyard because you're not benefiting," she said.

Former City Attorney Jim Penman shared that he’s a candidate that provides years of leadership experience. He says he’ll improve the city’s quality of life by attracting better employers.

"Minimum wage is not a livable wage," he said. "We need businesses who are going to pay good wages."

The primary election is on March 5.

Anthony Victoria is a UC Berkeley Local News Fellow reporting for KVCR News.