PEFA Visions for the Porterville of the Very-Near Future
Equality and Fairness for All: First and foremost, everybody must be welcome in all aspects of our city, with no exceptions. Amends should be made for past errors towards the LGBT Community and affirmative steps to make sure such episodes do not happen again to LGBT community or others.
City Hall is NOT a Church: Praying in City Hall, whether as an elected official performing official duties, or as staff at work, or as a member of the public at a public meeting is simply inappropriate. There is plenty of time during the week to worship as anyone sees fit. Porterville must use City Hall time to govern, and leave all the rest of the time available to worship. Keep the two separate, without exception.
Education is job one: Porterville should set as its goal for its schools to be second to none in the state of California in 15 years. Attractive schools make for a place where job creators in the modern and future economy will want to move and raise their kids. This will reverse the brain drain and raise everyone up.
Become the ag-tech information industry leader: Across California’s Central Valley and across the agricultural areas of the US, there are also brain-drain issues. Smart kids, and men and women want to live in rural areas and be in ag industries, but they also want to make use of their computer and other advanced technology skills. Porterville should aim to become the opposite of America’s rural brain drain, the place where many rural kids want to go for the jobs they want. The changes that are embraced where these kids actually should occur here instead of elsewhere.
Innovate, innovate, innovate to success: Porterville should embrace change rather than fear it. Innovation in processes, products and services are already embraced by our ag industry and in our day to day consumer lives. Our businesses should embrace innovation in all of these areas as well as rewarding it by exploring financial structures other than have been traditional. Workers at all news businesses should be able to earn a certain ownership level of the business in order to align their interests with management and raise everyone up.
Embrace and extend what is already unique and best: Porterville already has leadership positions in the US citrus industry, including growing, packing, distribution, and research. We also have uniquely trained staff and facilities for forensic care for intellectually disabled men and women, something that 48 states need but do not have. We can become US and world leaders in products and services around both of these industries if we set our minds to do it.
Value bilingualism and multilingualism in all: Porterville has a very diverse community with many having second- and native-language skills other than English. For individuals and for the City as a whole, these skills are valuable assets. Multi-lingual and multi-cultural children are the economic ambassadors of the future, and deserve better career options than the low wage jobs that prevail in Porterville today.