SJC City Council Candidate Statement: Sam Allevato

Incumbent highlights his record.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Patch is running each candidate's statement on file with the City Clerk's office on consecutive days in the order the names will appear on the ballot.

NAME: Sam Allevato

OCCUPATION: Councilmember/Retired Policeman

Despite a recession, our city is financially sound. With leadership and tough choices, we have balanced our budget and reduced spending while maintaining a safe environment for residents. As a member of the City Council for eight years, I am a proven and experienced leader with a track record of sound decision-making.

A retired law enforcement professional, public safety is my top priority

Our city is made up of 40 percent open space. With my leadership, we have added miles of trails for the enjoyment of hikers, bikders and equestrians. We have also added new parks such as Los Rios Park, Reata Park and Event Center and the Dr. Cortese Dog Park.

I have secured funding for transportation projects, diverting traffic around our city, and offering regional solutions to traffic problems, promoting safety, mobility, and preservation of our village character.

I support bringing new businesses into our town, adding revenue to our city, and bringing economic stimulus and synergy that will optimize sales tax revenues.

A 36-year resident who raised my family here, I understand what a special place San Juan Capistrano is and will continue to be with experienced and caring leadership.

Others can promise, but I have delivered.


John Perry August 29, 2012 at 03:08 AM
Sam, in addition to your stated accomplishments, the voters should also know the following: 1. You voted for every water rate increase that came before you including the 40% increase in water in 2010 with an additional 3% per year for the next 5 years. 2. As Mayor you didn't know that the Utilities Department had run up an $8.2 million deficit. How could that happen? Do you ever read the financial reports that the staff prepares? 3. You voted to purchase a piece of ranch property for $30 million that residents still can't set foot on. You gave away the right to name our property after our city, You gave away the right to hold our own rodeo and to benefit from the proceeds. 4.The transportation programs you speak of includes the mess at Del Obispo and the rail tracks and the intersection at J.Serra and Rancho Viejo that together will cost the city hundreds of thousands to fix. John Perry
Clint Worthington August 29, 2012 at 03:32 AM
Sam, financially sound? After 50 years of being a City, we do not have one dollar set aside for a new City Hall. Not one. The Cities bond rating is down the tubes. Heck, you could not even float the 18 million dollar bond for the Utility Department, yet the City continues to collect interest and principal at the rate of $111,000 a month from the rate payers. Just to give you a heads up Sam, a balanced budget is required by law. As a member of the City Council for eight years, you have got to go. Your time is up. This means that you have been here since the inception of your huge failure, the Ground Water Recovery Plant. At just the last Utility Commission meeting the cost of the GWRP for water was almost $1,400.00 and acre foot. Mr. Vandermaaten, the Utility Director said in his letter to the residents that we can buy water from MWD for $780.00 and acre foot. Yes, Sam you are wasting taxpayer money. You gave 5 million dollars to auto dealerships at the same time the City was holding lectures on how to avoid foreclosure on your home where the attendence was overflowing and the City had to hold additional lectures. Transportation, oh my gosh are you kidding? At the last City Council meeting, you just paid a huge amount of money to a consultant to redesign the horrible intersection at Rancho Viejo and J Serra that you spent over a million dollars building.
Clint Worthington August 29, 2012 at 03:41 AM
(cont) Don't even get me started on the Del Obispo crossing. You are the only City Council member that voted for every single item at that crossing. This crossing and the others was originally pegged at 1.7 million dollars to build. By the time you were done it was 9.2 million dollars to build. It has been almost a year and it still does not work and you cannot stop spending money to try and fix it. Oh, and dont forget that stupid, stupid traffic light at the crossing that yes, you Sam voted for. Yes, you have delivered Sam. After your eight years on the City Council, we are heavily in debt, our bond rating is in the toilet. Financials are sooo bad we cannot even issue a bond. We have traffic signals every couple of hundred yards. Rancho Viejo Road in front of your home was repaved. Yet Alipaz which sees more traffic has not been repaved in over 40 years. Yes Sam, it will take generations to undo and repay what you have delivered. Please just go.
Clint Worthington August 29, 2012 at 12:14 PM
I don't know how I could have left out your hiring of City Manager Joe Tait at $324,000 a year for our small town of 35,000. MSNBC had him ranked at 15th in the Nation in terms of pay. Joe Tait made almost as much money as the President of the United States. Sam, you delivered all right.
rob h August 29, 2012 at 01:54 PM
I completely agree with both Clint and John. We don't want you nor need you, or anyone like you. Seriously, we should clean house and put people into place that REALLY care about SJC. I don't care how long you've lived here, or raised your family here, your track record speaks for itself. And to reiterate Clint, don't get me started and all the mess you have put onto SJC with the JSerra fiasco, (WHO'S IDEA WAS THIS ANYWAY?) to the Ramp at Camino Capistrano to the RXR Crossing. Idiots
rob h August 29, 2012 at 02:54 PM
We would all appreciate your explanations.
rachel o August 29, 2012 at 04:19 PM
Council Member Allevato, I have four children and trying to get them through town is a nightmare. You promised you would fix the traffic problem for eight years. It is worse than ever. You say our City is "financially sound" with a "balanced budget". Even my children can see through that one. The City of San Bernardino had balanced budgets for 12 years-four months before they filed bankruptcy. Come on Council Member Allevato, tell the truth. The newspapers report that our bond rating (like a credit score) is in the toilet, and our towns debt is huge compared to when you took office. Can't you just say no to spending? You say "I support bringing new business into town". I am sure that the business that are barely hanging on by their fingernails appreciate the extra competition that you want to bring into town. Your thinking is illogical and it has been for a long time. You state 40% is open space. We paid 27.5 million dollars for a 132 acre park at the east end of town, that I have only been able to take my kids once in the past eight months. I cannot even ride a bicycle or picnic at our park. Yeah, we are paying for something we cannot even use. I can't afford to water my lawn anymore for my kids because my water bill is so high. What were you thinking when you built that stupid water thing that just takes money away from my kids that I could spend on their education. I am so very, very sorry I voted for you years ago. You won't have my vote this time.
Ian Smith August 29, 2012 at 05:09 PM
It is always very significant when a candidate carefully and with deft skill avoids all the political hot buttons mentioned by all the contributors shown above. SAM has sat on the city dais for all of 9 years and has "reigned" over the fiscal destruction of our city.(Just take a look at the Bond Debt) Open Space is fine when you can afford to pay for it but we will be leaving this debt for many decades to come. Sam along with the assistance of two former members of the destruction team (Nielsen and Uso, they are gone now)) and with the multilple assitance from the departing Freese we are left to find new ideas and leadership. We do not need any more council members who do not have the interest of the taxpayers and residents as the accurate focus of their attention. No more special RANCH influence, no more candidates backed by countless thousands of dollars. Wait and see who gets all the financial support and vote somewhere else on the ballot. We must not allow our council to be bought by outside influences. No more votes for Sam. We want water at the least cost, we wanted to have some effort made to avoid this traffic mess and we sure did not get anything with a $324,500 per year City Manager who lasted just barely 18 months. IAN SMITH
John Gamos August 30, 2012 at 09:36 PM
You know, I googled RR crossing accidents on Del Obispo and could not find one accident with a car at that crossing. If that money spent was supposed to make the crossing safer, and there was zero accidents before, how is it safer if there was previously no accidents? Also is this the same jerk that had to have the red light cameras? Ortega and Del O are not high speed intersections. When was the last time you could go faster than fifteen Mph through that crossing? What a jerk.
melissa kaffen August 31, 2012 at 12:58 AM
Wow...interesting thread. TY.
Jack Chestek August 31, 2012 at 10:26 PM
San Juan Capistrano needs council members who can represent a wide cross section of residents. Sam does not meet this requirement. I believe all Sam cares about is the Ranch. It appears to me that his interests are more on the side of developers rather than the residents. Last year Sam voted against his Planning Commission and the County of Orange to give a developer what he wanted along La Novia. Sam has become complacent and needs to retire after a life time of living off tax payers. Sam really doesn't understand the first thing about the distribution of water in this town. I believe water is one of the major revenue sources in town. Sam should know something after 9 years but he doesn't. He doesn't understand the finances of running this town. Sam told me in 2011 there was no problem with the City floating in $144.0 million in red ink. When I asked him this year if he was troubled with our town drowning in $200 to $300 million in red ink I got no reply. Sam is justification for term limits. It's okay for other residents to be Council members. Sorry Sam, you need to step aside and let voters find a Council member that is not justification for term limits. You had a good run at it. Now, it's okay to retire.
Matt Gaffney September 03, 2012 at 05:08 PM
I've got to call BS on you Cliff. Alipaz wasn't 4 lanes wide 40yrs ago. So the street has obviously been redone within the last 40 years.
Clint Worthington September 03, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Matt, check the website historicaerials.com . Type in your address. The 1980 photo clearly shows four lanes (32 years ago) and the 1972 photo shows four lanes (40 years ago). The Casitas had not been built yet, and as the photo shows it was only 3 1/2 lanes wide at the Casitas, but four lanes the rest of the way up to present day Calle Rolando. The orange Capistrano Plumbing building has been there since 1963. As the photo shows, both mobile home parks were in place in the 1972 photo on both sides of Alipaz and it was paved four lanes wide. The photo shows Alipaz was originally striped as two lanes as there was not sufficient traffic to require it to be striped yet for four lanes since Alipaz was closed at Rancho Del Avion. The photo clearly shows that Alipaz was paved for four lanes in 1972.
Clint Worthington September 03, 2012 at 06:33 PM
Matt, what is also great about historicaerials.com, is that while it is not fast as Google Earth, you can get photos back to 1938. You can do the map overlay of the streets and the website will hold that address. As I live down the street from you, I can see the progression of the property since 1938 using that street overlay of exactly what my property looked like 74 years ago to now. It does not cost anything, unless you print it. I saw that the a previous home I owned in the Troy homes off of Del Avion was part of the landing strip of the Capistrano Airport. Plus, it is great when someone calls BS on you.
Clint Worthington September 03, 2012 at 06:35 PM
Mr. Chestek, you could not have said it any better.
Joanna Clark October 12, 2012 at 05:27 PM
I agree with Jack, we need term limits. I also agree that we need council members who can, and are willing to, represent the wide-cross section of residents who live here. I've written the city council numerous times over the years, and if there is one thing Sam is good at, it's ignoring his constituents. We're facing numerous problems, all complicated by an economy that is in the toilet. When it takes 20 minutes to get from Farmers and Merchants Bank to Alipaz on Del Obispo, during rush hour, one has to ask what's wrong with this picture. When you have to go nearly a mile out of your way in a wheel chair, because you can't use the side walks that have light polls, street signs, or power transforms blocking your way, one has to ask what's wrong with this city. Those new cobblestone sidewalks are beautiful, but have you ever tried to push yourself around on them in a wheel chair?


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