Public service is my passion and my life’s work. I’ve served Orange County for more than 25 years in both the public and private sectors, the past eight as Mayor Pro Tem and Councilwoman in Anaheim.
Orange County is changing, and county government needs to adapt and address those changes or be consumed by them.
As residents, we’ve witnessed an escalating homeless crisis, declining industry sectors that provide middle-class jobs, workforce housing shortfalls, escalating traffic congestion, and increased crimes rates that affect our quality of life.
I am running for Orange County Supervisor because we need to put the community above politics, roll up our sleeves, and get to work every day to serve those who live, work, or run a business in Orange County.
During my tenure as Councilwoman in Anaheim, I was a champion of fiscal responsibility; adopting balanced city budgets every year in office that doubled cash reserves, reduced pension liabilities, and kept city and utility fees low, while expanding transparency at City Hall.
When I took office in 2010, unemployment was at historically high levels. Adding to the problem was a police and firefighter force decimated by the recession.
I immediately got to work and partnered with business leaders and community stakeholders to adopt programs and policies that led to record reinvestment, created thousands of local skilled jobs, and reduced unemployment levels by more than two-thirds.
I led programs to hire more than 40 sworn police officers, expand fire and rescue services, establish wildland management, and invest in early wildfire detection programs to protect residents and homes from future wildfires – all without raising taxes.
On behalf of taxpayers, I authored the Taxpayer Protection Act, a charter amendment that increases the threshold to place tax increases on the city’s ballot. It was overwhelmingly passed by voters in Anaheim and since its passage, these protections were replicated and adopted by voters in Irvine and Newport Beach.
To ensure the safety of children and families, I passed a ban on sex offenders from entering city parks and worked with law enforcement countywide to address human trafficking and combat childhood exploitation.
Adopting sustainable programs and policies to end conditions of homelessness in Orange County is a moral and legal imperative. I began working with service providers to assist the homeless dating back to my first term in office, not as part of a campaign for this office.
As Councilwoman, I worked with city and county officials to establish the first full- service homeless shelter in Orange County’s history, Bridges at Kraemer Place, now open and providing year-round services to our county’s most vulnerable population while ensuring community safety and with no adverse impacts on the surrounding business district.
As homeless encampments grew along the Santa Ana River Trail (SART), I stood up for those living in that condition and the thousands of residents and families living adjacent to those camps and called for a state of emergency. I also developed and put in place, with the unanimous support of the Anaheim City Council, a 15-point action plan called Operation Home S.A.F.E.; to authorize city funding, services, and aid to those living in the encampments, and to provide fair warning that enforcement would follow if services and shelter were not accepted.
The conditions of the SART camps and impacts on neighboring residents had been allowed to escalate and criminal activity went unchecked for nearly two years because no one agency wanted to assume responsibility. As an area leader, I refused to sit on the sidelines and do nothing.
With the right leadership, I believe we can establish comprehensive and permanent solutions to house those who are homeless, provide vital medical and mental health services to those suffering from addiction and mental illness, and eliminate homeless encampments countywide; protecting all who live, work and visit Orange County.
This past year, wildfires devasted California, with more than 80 people who lost their lives, and $12.4 billion in insured losses to the fires. Wildfires continues to ravish our county year after year, causing complete devastation to impacted residents.
As Supervisor, I will proactively lead efforts to develop comprehensive wildland protection procedures, as well as work with the Orange County Fire Authority to develop wildfire detection and early warning systems to combat wildfires before they threaten lives and property.
At the start of my campaign, I signed the “Clean Campaign Pledge” because Orange County residents deserve a spirited campaign on the issues they care most about, not false and misleading campaign tactics and personal character attacks that divert attention away from those issues.
I am running on a proven track record of fiscal responsibility, innovative leadership, and measurable actions.
As Supervisor, I will listen to your concerns, act before there is a crisis, and drive solutions by working side by side with the community to achieve meaningful results.
I would be honored to represent residents of the third district on the Orange County Board of Supervisors and I humbly ask for their vote.
Please visit www.ElectKrisMurray.com for more information.
Kris Murray was Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem and City Councilwoman from 2010-2018, and has served Orange County in the public and private sectors for more than 25 years. She and her husband Steve Murray are small business owners and live in Anaheim Hills with their son and two rescue dogs. The Murray’s spend family time volunteering at Seneca OC serving at-risk foster children, Boy Scouts, Little League, Anaheim Hills Community Council and at their son’s school.
Opinions expressed in editorials belong to the authors and not Voice of OC.
Voice of OC is interested in hearing different perspectives and voices. If you want to weigh in on this issue or others please contact Voice of OC Involvement Editor Theresa Sears at TSears@voiceofoc.org
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