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Frank Ferry: Saying goodbye after 16 years on City Council

Posted: March 28, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: March 28, 2014 2:00 a.m.
 

It’s not easy saying goodbye to my seat on the City Council.

If you do any job for 16 years, and particularly one you love, you quickly realize two things. One is that time passes really fast.

And two, you realize that you are really going to miss the job.

For me, I loved my role as a City Council member, so vacating my City Council seat is bittersweet.

As I close the book on this chapter of my life, I look back with an appreciation for all of the opportunities I enjoyed to be a champion for a better Santa Clarita.

I’m also excited for what lies ahead for our city, the City Council, and all of the residents and business owners of this great community.

As you may know, I ran for the City Council because I didn’t feel anyone like me had a seat at the dais. As a working father and husband, I wanted to see more parks and roads and better connectivity across the community.

Santa Clarita is home to some of the most beautiful parks in the region, and the fact that we offer more than 30 parks throughout our city is impressive.

Central Park will always hold a special place for me, not only because it fulfilled a great need, but because it was made possible through a partnership with a terrific community partner, the Castaic Lake Water Agency.

The day we cut the ribbon on Central Park was huge for our city — knowing that thousands of families and sports teams who were eager for new places to play and practice had a new home.

The opening of the cross-valley connector, a $245 million project that involved nearly 100 partners, is another day I will never forget.

Many said that road wasn’t possible, but that wasn’t an acceptable answer for me, the other members of the City Council, or the community.

The level of determination and persistence needed to make that road a reality is exactly the type of leadership that’s necessary to help Santa Clarita be successful for the next 16 years and beyond.

Kids of all ages, not just my own, will always have a special place in my heart. I am passionate about providing local youth with quality infrastructure projects like Central Park and the Santa Clarita Skate Park, and helping them learn and navigate life in a way that’s constructive.

Teens make mistakes, but they should be given the opportunity to learn from them. That’s why I felt the Community Court program, which was started in 2006, was so important.

This thriving program allows first-time, non-violent, juvenile offenders to address their mistakes and do community service locally, which keeps the offense off their record.

We’ve seen great success with this program and I’m proud to say I was a champion for its development.

Life passes much too fast, and I’ve had my fair share of opportunities to reflect on how little time we have here.

With that in mind, one of the other projects I will always cherish is the Youth Grove at Central Park.

Developed in partnership with the Blue Ribbon Task Force and local businesses, the Youth Grove is a beautiful place for families and youth in our community to remember the lives of young people cut short as a result of drinking and driving or reckless driving.

Sixteen years passes quickly when you are busy and having fun. I’ve had the time of my life serving this community and am so thankful for the opportunity to make my mark.

I would be remiss if I did not mention my admiration and appreciation of our city staff. This group of hard-working professionals is key to our successful city, and I am grateful every day for their commitment and dedication to making Santa Clarita an amazing place to live.

I also want to thank my family for their love and support over the years. As I head out of office, I urge every resident to please take the time to vote on April 8.

Your City Council needs visionary, enthusiastic, passionate leaders who are champions for progress and who want to leave Santa Clarita a better place than they found it.

Frank Ferry is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at fferry@santa-clarita.com.

 

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