A meeting is underway at the Grand Central Art Center. The first order of business is safety. A SAPD representative discusses the different security forces in the Downtown. Suggestions are being taken from the audience in what is turning into a heated conversation.
Councilwoman Michelle Martínez is taking questions and encourages people to call when there are security concerns. She adds that SAPD is 100 officers understaffed, and that there is no budget for expanding the force.
Atilano Molina, an artist in the Santora building speaks favorably of having a security force around the Santora, a company called American Shield.
Someone states that Santa Ana has half of the police force of Newport Beach, but five times it’s population.
The night concluded with a consensus concerning more dialogue among different parties including Downtown Incorporated and certain artists who were in attendance. Downtown Inc president Bob Stewart, who is a musical composer and downtown property owner explained that it took Downtown Inc one year to organize effectively, and that going forward there will be more dialogue with the artists. He said that in order for the artists to come into the fold, they must organize–something that other artists in the village, including myself–have been suggesting to those artists in the Santora.
O. Ian Ávalos