COSAS Newsletter for May 27, 2021

Date: May, 27 2021 Category: City Manager, City Manager’s Newsletter, Notification

In this edition of COSAS, learn about the City’s newest affordable housing projects, our first female jail commander, the engineer behind our traffic lights, the City budget, and other exciting news and events.

Spotlight Photo



Inner Self by The Heavy

"Inner Self" by the Heavy Collective, is a mural that was gifted during the peak of the lockdown. The image depicts a garden theme and mother nature figure meditating and holding the peace sign. The mural promotes inner peace. 

Artist: Kimberly Duran and Bud Herrera.

Photo Credit: Kimberly Duran

To submit your own original photo of Santa Ana to be featured in the next newsletter, complete this form


COVID-19 Update

Case Rates Staying Low

COVID-19 case rates throughout Santa Ana and all of Orange County remain low. Our city is only seeing a few cases a day at most, and many days we have no deaths from the virus at all. The best way to keep the trend going and to reopen our economy by the governor’s target date of June 15 is for everyone to get vaccinated.

Santa Ana’s COVID-19 Resource Page: 

Get a Ride to Get the Vaccine

Individuals who need a ride to a County Super POD site can call the COVID-19 hotline at (714) 834-2000 to schedule an appointment for transportation assistance with AgeWell or Abrazar. Public transportation is also available with OCTA.

Lost Your Vaccination Card?

If you’ve lost your Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) card after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a County POD site, you can call the COVID-19 hotline at (714) 834-2000 or email the OC Health Care Agency’s Immunization Assistance Program (IAP) mailbox at to request a replacement CDC card.

Masks Still Required Until June 15

We’re all excited to get back to mostly normal life, but the State said masks are still required in most situations when around others and indoors until June 15.



City Hall Closed on Memorial Day, No Street Sweeping

Santa Ana City Hall will be closed on Monday, May 31 in observance of Memorial Day. There will be no street sweeping, and trash pickup will be delayed one day. Regular City Hall hours will resume on Tuesday, June 1. While you enjoy the long holiday weekend and the unofficial beginning of summer, please join me in remembering and honoring all of those who have given their lives in service to our country.



New Affordable Housing Projects Completed


Providing shelters, housing and supportive services for unhoused individuals in our community is a top priority for the City of Santa Ana. This week, we joined Community Development Partners and Mercy House Living Centers in announcing the completion of La Placita Cinco and Casa Querencia, two new affordable apartment communities. With $6 million in funding and 56 Section 8 project-based vouchers provided by the City, the projects created a total of 106 affordable units for chronically homeless and low-income families in the area.

In addition to providing a local homeless shelter, the City has helped over 430 homeless individuals receive permanent supportive housing over the past five years. We have 191 additional supportive housing units in the pipeline, and we expect to issue 471 housing vouchers by the end of 2021. We are committed to doing our part to end homelessness.

Casa Querencia is 100% leased and occupied, but La Placita Cinco is still accepting applications, with preference given to those who live or work in Santa Ana. Go here to learn how to qualify and apply.



Santa Ana’s First Female Jail Commander

Commander Sandra Gatt, a Santa Ana Police Department veteran of over 20 years, became the first sworn female commander of SAPD’s Jail Operations Bureau in January. Prior to this new role, Commander Gatt served in various roles throughout the different Bureaus, including the detective unit, internal affairs and field training. Commander Gatt now oversees the Bureau’s two divisions: Jail Administration and Support Services Division and Jail Operations Division, which grants her the responsibility of presiding over 400 inmates and almost 100 staff members.

“It’s a new position, a new experience,” Gatt said. “I’m learning something new every day about the jail. I work with some great people. I learn from all of them.” Commander Gatt is now directing her efforts in her new role on working with Jail Manager Jaime Manriquez to bring jail operations back to their previous pre-pandemic delivery.

Read More About Commander Gatt:


Lillie King Park Utility Box Art

The Parks, Recreation and Community Services Agency and the Community Development Agency worked together to convert an outdated, weathered utility box into a beautiful piece of art that can be appreciated by the community. The art piece was created by artist Crisseselle Menidola, and residents let her know just how grateful and excited they were to have some art at the park for everyone to enjoy!

Read More About Our Arts and Culture Office:


South Main Public Art

The City of Santa Ana Public Works Agency is accepting proposals for public art as part of our South Main Street Project and reconstruction efforts. To be considered, artists or teams will be required to present and submit a detailed conceptual design proposal.

The deadline for online proposal submission is Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 11:59 PM (PST). Learn more about the requirements and apply at the link below. For any questions or if you would like more information, please contact Gabriela Cramer at the Arts & Culture Office at (714) 647-7626 or 

Read More About Public Arts Initiatives:


Closure on Westbound Dyer Road at Main Street 

Westbound Dyer Road from Main Street to Garnsey Street will continue to be closed through June 6, 2021. This closure is due to Edison underground utility work. Traffic westbound on Dyer Road will be able to go northbound or southbound on Main Street. Eastbound on Dyer Road is open to through traffic. We recommend using alternate routes and plan for possible delays since this closure will impact traffic flow.  We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for understanding.


Orange County Fire Authority Safety Tips

Water Safety

Water safety starts at home. Follow the ABCs of water safety to make sure you know how to keep yourself and others safe in and around the water. A is for active adult supervision when children are near the water. B is for barriers around the pool and spa. C is for classes to learn how to swim. You can also take classes on how to give CPR and first aid.



Even if fireworks are legal in your city, they pose a huge risk to life and property. Know the risks, know the law, and practice firework safety. Only light fireworks outdoors in a clear area that is a safe distance from people, homes, vehicles, and flammable materials. A city-sponsored fireworks show is a great alternative to lighting your own.

Learn More from OCFA:


Locating Current City Construction Activities

Do you want to know where all City construction work is happening?  You are in luck!  On our City website, you can view an interactive map to see all of the great projects that are under construction. On the interactive map, you’ll find a project’s vital statistics (such as the project start and end dates, as well as a description of the project), along with information on who to call if you want more information. 


Pride Flag Flies at City Hall

If you visit City Hall over the next month, you may notice the Pride flag waving next to our City, State, U.S. and POW/MIA flags. The Pride flag was raised in recognition of Harvey Milk Day, which was on May 22 this year, and LGBTQ Pride Month in June. This flag policy was approved by the City Council in 2015. Santa Ana is proud to be a city of diversity, equality and inclusivity.



Keeping the (Traffic) Lights On

Phat Vu has worked with the City of Santa Ana for almost 15 years. As the Assistant Traffic Operations Engineer, he works in the field and in City Hall to ensure the city’s traffic signals are all working and timed to best ease the flow of traffic. Phat’s background is in electrical engineering, and as such he loves working on the network of the traffic grid to ensure everything is working properly, and solving new problems, like how to best optimize the signals and buttons for the new protected bike lane on 5th St.

When he’s in the Traffic Management Center in City Hall, he has dozens of screens around him, showing him real-time footage of the city’s approximately 110 CCTV traffic cameras and a map of the city showing any outages of the city’s 304. These cameras do not record any data, but do show him problem areas, such as construction zones and red lights where people are sitting for too long. If he can’t see it, he can’t help it! When he sees a problem such as construction, he can modify the timing of the lights to help ease congestion caused by the cone zone. Phat does his best to get you through the city as efficiently (and safely!) as possible.

Santa Ana is a large city and has many roads and signals. We have a lot of infrastructure to help improve traffic flow, but no tech is perfect. You will hit red lights, and when you’re running late, you’re bound to hit every single one! Just remember that red lights are there for a reason: to help ease the overall traffic flow and congestion of our city streets. Our awesome Public Works team, including Phat, is here making sure everything is running as smoothly as possible.



At the May 18 regular City Council meeting and the May 24 special City Council meeting, the Santa Ana City Council …

City Council meetings are typically held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 5 p.m. Our meetings are live streamed on YouTube and CTV 3 (channel 3 on Spectrum and channel 99 on AT&T TV). If you’d like to provide public comments on agenda and non-agenda items, you can email, or join the Zoom webinar online or by phone. 



Discovery Cube Reopens, Free Tuesdays for Residents!

The Discovery Cube in Santa Ana is reopening beginning Friday, May 28, 2021! They are also bringing back "Waste Free Days," where Santa Ana residents get free admission on the first Tuesday of the month, up to 4 tickets per household. Santa Ana residents will need to provide proof of residency through an I.D., driver's license or utility bill.

Visit The Discovery Cube's Website

City Council Budget Discussion - June 1

At their next regular meeting on Tuesday, June 1, the City Council will consider one of the most - if not the most - important recurring items: the City’s budget. The budget is the City’s fiscal plan that sets out anticipated revenues and expenditures for accomplishing a variety of services over a fiscal year. Basically, it’s our financial plan. You are invited (and encouraged) to participate in the discussion to let the City Council know what types of programs, projects, and services you would like to be funded. The open session meeting begins at 5:45 p.m.




Santa Ana Active Transportation Plan Presentation - June 2

Join Santa Ana Active Streets (SAAS) in a virtual workshop to learn about the City’s last seven years of envisioning to make Santa Ana a more walkable and bikeable place to live, work, and visit. Presenters will share insights on the Downtown Santa Ana Complete Streets Plan, the Central Santa Ana Complete Streets Plan, and the Active Transportation Plan.  The workshop is to take place on Wednesday, June 2, 2021, from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Register at the link below. For additional information, contact Dorian Romero at or (714) 340-5186.



Tea and Civility Virtual Book Reading Club - June 3

Have a cup of tea and join the Santa Ana Public Library in a chat about books and reading. The program resumes on Thursday, June 3, and will take place every Monday and Thursday from 4-5 p.m. Please register to receive a confirmation email with instructions to join our program (adult patrons are welcomed to join). Register here.


Résumé Review - Every Wednesday

Are you having trouble finding a job? Do you feel as though you are often getting overlooked and ignored in the job hiring process? Let the Santa Ana WORK Center help! The WORK Center holds virtual résumé reviews every Wednesday for one hour that allows for input from staff who will work with you to make your résumé be the best that it can be. Through review and revision, staff will lend their assistance in improving your résumé and help you become a better candidate in a challenging job market!