The Press Enterprise had opined that the job of a city is to remain neutral, but the Moreno Valley City Manager disagreed.

Henry Garcia responded to the Press Enterprise Editorial by spelling out how and why the city is acting in the best interests of its residents by being a champion of a development. The particular project in question, the World Logistics Center, would bring much needed jobs to a city that continues to fight high unemployment. By encouraging investment and “cheering” development, people like Garcia are trying to improve the lives of their residents.

That is the purpose of planning commissions, general plans, and economic development to bring jobs and growth to a community. In Moreno Valley, for instance, one economist described the economic environment as being one where you live in the city and work elsewhere.

In the opinion of Garcia, turning the commuter relationship around would improve the city and the lives of its residents.

From the Press Enterprise:

The city of Moreno Valley proudly supports projects that have the potential to bring much-needed jobs and revenue to our community. The P-E criticized our promotion of the proposed World Logistics Center by claiming that a more “proper role is to be an unbiased watchdog for the public interest, not a booster for developers’ plans” (“City sellout?” Our Views, April 5).

The role of a city manager is not to ignore the needs of the development community and turn a blind eye to residents like ours that continue to suffer from a local unemployment rate of 14 percent. City officials must be bold advocates for their community by using the tools available to them, including the budget process, General Plan amendments, economic development and supporting pivotal projects in the city.

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