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CAMPAIGN 2018: Santa Cruz County District 4 Supervisor race

Greg Caput has represented south Santa Cruz County for the last eight years. He’s trying to make it four more years by highlighting his accomplishments.

The first thing Caput mentioned to KION was work being done on the Pajaro River, helping prevent a potential catastrophic flood. He highlights sediment already being removed to increase water flow, and says the plan now is to push the federal and state government for 200 million dollars. 50 million dollars would be provided by Santa Cruz and Monterey counties.

“Pajaro River is the number one priority. We’re trying to make that safe for a one-hundred year
storm,” Caput saids.

We met Caput right outside Watsonville High School where he helped put in a crosswalk needed for student safety.

“Almost two thousand students go to Watsonville High School. That is a really big issue in the morning when they are going to school. Also, lunch time, it’s an open campus. They are walking across here by the hundreds,” Caput said.

But Dutra says there is still a need for safety projects in the more rural parts of the district.

“You leave the city limits, our roads are terrible. Things are failing. There are areas,
like on East Lake Avenue, where kids are walking on dirt,” Dutra said.

Dutra argues that not enough resources are being sent to District 4 and there needs to be new energy. One of his goals is to add a new county position, solely focused on the area’s homeless – which he says has increased up to 30 percent in the last three years.

“Sometimes we just Band-Aid the situation and we are not really addressing it full-on. So it’s definitely time to work on this and actually find results,” Dutra said.

He also mentions more affordable housing. With people coming in from Santa Cruz and the Bay Area, Dutra wants a plan to make sure there is more for residents currently here. Dutra says this is already happening in the City of Watsonville.

“Making sure when new construction comes in that 15-20 percent of it becomes affordable, and with some of our new developments that are coming out, people in Santa Cruz County are going to get the first shot at buying these homes,” Dutra said.

But Caput tells KION this has been going on already in the county – aid for low income families looking to buy a home, and rental help.

“150 units in the last six years accounted for about 85 percent of the entire county’s low income housing.

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