Neil Nisperos, Staff Writer
Posted: 10/03/2012 08:12:23 PM PDT
Updated: 10/03/2012 08:17:06 PM PDT

RANCHO CUCAMONGA – City Council candidates shared their views on local governance Tuesday night at Goldy S. Lewis Community Center.

Present at the Rancho Cucamonga Chamber of Commerce- sponsored event were incumbents Chuck Buquet and Sam Spagnolo, and challengers Erick Jimenez, Jim Moffatt, Anthony Rice and Marc Steinorth.

Issues of discussion revolved around the relationship between city government and the success of businesses in town.

Steinorth said some businesses have a hard time getting people to find their establishment because of city sign restrictions. He cited a case of a local businessman who couldn’t get an A-frame sign in front of his business.

“We all know you will not find a business that has been advertised, that you found the address for online, that you’re driving to go see, unless you see a sign where that business actually is,” said Steinorth, who ran for mayor in 2010.

“For a business to be successful, for them to be able to follow up with an offer, perhaps a call to action, a reason to come into their business, a banner that displays a special price or a special promotion that they’re having to try to boost … year-end sales, those are reasonable things for a business to have to do. For our city to restrict that, restricts growth. We all know this city is really dependent on sales tax revenue, so it doesn’t make sense.”

Rice responded to a question on whether the city has appropriately budgeted for public safety needs.

“I do know that if we’re in a situation where we’re paying our past public employees more than our current ones, that’s going to affect public safety. The economy is a big huge issue that affects public safety,” said Rice, a small business owner who said he running on a platform of limited government and free enterprise.

“It’s not just the amount of money that goes to public safety. I do think that it can be looked at and adjusted.”

Buquet, who was appointed to fill the remaining two years of Mayor Dennis Michael’s former council seat in 2010, was asked about the future outlook of economic development for the city. He cited recent city action to position staff throughout city departments to work toward economic development in the wake of the state’s dissolution of redevelopment agencies.

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