COSAS: City Manager’s Newsletter for March 14, 2024

Posted on March 14, 2024

In this edition of the COSAS newsletter, read about the new ceremonial street signs that honor two important women, volunteer to help beautify our parks, sign up for emergency response training, and find tons of community events, from bike riding classes to egg hunts to the fire station open house.

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Spotlight Photo

A Walk in Santa Ana

Photo Credit: Ivan S

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

City Manager’s Highlights

Hiring our new Chief of Police

The position of Chief of Police is one of the most important, visible and impactful executive positions at the City of Santa Ana, leading nearly 400 sworn personnel and over 200 professional and administrative employees at the Santa Ana Police Department. Since November, Interim City Manager Tom Hatch has been diligently working to fill this open position with a forward-thinking, experienced law enforcement professional and a strong leadership presence who will best connect with and serve the Santa Ana community.

Santa Ana Police logo

The City hired California’s top police chief search firm, Bob Murray & Associates, which has successfully helped place 54 police chiefs in California and Arizona alone. The recruiter actively sought out potential candidates from near and far, while also conducting a series of community meetings to hear perspectives and ideas from many different Santa Ana residents and stakeholders.

After the recruiter identified the top candidates, we gathered three panels to interview each individual. One was a six-member community panel that included a range of ages, backgrounds, and neighborhood and local organization affiliations. The second was a professional panel of law enforcement and fire department executives from outside of Santa Ana. The third was an internal panel of City executives.

Interim City Manager Hatch is moving forward with the process of filling the Chief of Police position to ensure that this essential public safety position isn’t left unfilled for an extended period of time. We will keep the community updated as we have more news to share.

City staff out in the community

Community engagement plays an essential role in all of our City departments, whether to get community feedback, explain City programs, or to connect with children and residents.

Pictured: Santa Ana Police Department officers read to students for Read Across America Day at Rosita Elementary School; the Public Works Agency invited a 4th grade class from Jackson Elementary School to witness the Windsor Park prefabricated restroom installation up close and to learn about construction, planning, engineering, and community involvement; the Santa Ana Public Library’s Knowledge Mobile shares Storytime at the Park; Finance and Management Services staff explain the City budget at one of our community budget meetings.


Santa Ana Housing Authority partners with CalOptima Health to provide health care access to vulnerable residents

A group of men and women stand in front of a CalOptima sign.

In an effort to better serve our most vulnerable residents, the Santa Ana Housing Authority has entered into an agreement with CalOptima Health that will help those most in need get better access to health care and social services. The agreement streamlines the Medi-Cal application process to ensure that individuals receiving or applying for rental assistance can swiftly apply for Medi-Cal and access community support services.

Over the past five years, the Santa Ana Housing Authority has been awarded new funding for special housing vouchers that can help qualified individuals pay for much-needed housing. Those vouchers serve people experiencing homeless, disabled unhoused individuals, homeless veterans, and foster youth who are aging out of the foster system. While the new vouchers have been a significant benefit for our residents, it has given rise to an increasing need for supportive services, which CalOptima will help provide.

We’re proud to join with the public housing authorities of Orange County, Anaheim and Garden Grove in this partnership with CalOptima!

Read CalOptima’s press release

Me Encanta Santa Ana: Celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day with community volunteer event

Me Encanta Santa Ana instagram image

The City of Santa Ana’s Parks, Recreation, and Community Services Agency and Public Works Agency are hosting the first city-wide volunteer event celebrating Earth Day and Arbor Day on Saturday, April 20, 2024. Me Encanta Santa Ana, which means “I love Santa Ana” in Spanish, will give residents an opportunity to help beautify Santa Ana while taking pride and ownership of the City’s robust park system.

Volunteer registration is now open for residents to select their preferred projects that vary in level of difficulty and location. Volunteers will check in at Jerome Park, 2115 W. McFadden Ave., between 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. before going to their assigned projects at several locations around the city. The event will end with a concert and resource fair back at Jerome Park.

Learn more about Me Encanta Santa Ana 

Be prepared for an emergency with CERT training

Learn how to care for yourself, your family, your neighbors and co-workers in the event of a major disaster or emergency! The Santa Ana Police Department, Orange County Fire Authority and the Orange County American Red Cross are offering free Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training classes from April 2 through May 14. Classes will be on Tuesday nights from 6:30 to 9 p.m. CERT training is open to all adult residents of Santa Ana, or teenagers attending with a parent. Participants will attend the full seven-night program, and class size is limited.

CERT’s goal is to provide information and skills to sustain yourself and to help others when emergency responders can’t respond or until help does arrive. Participants will learn:

  • Earthquake preparedness and disaster plans
  • Fire safety, utilities and fire extinguishers
  • Light search and rescue
  • Emergency Medical Care
  • And more!

To register: Email City of Santa Ana Emergency Operations Coordinator Steve Rhyner at

Learn more about CERT training

ICYMI: Check out our Tết Festival video

In case you missed our inaugural Santa Ana Tết Lunar New Year Festival, please watch this great video highlighting the dancing, music, performances, fireworks, community activities, and crowds of attendees that made this event a success! The Tết Lunar New Year Festival was a collaboration between the Santa Ana Parks, Recreation, and Community Services Agency and the Santa Ana Public Library on Feb. 3 that drew several thousand people to Centennial Park.

Help OCTA design a walking and biking trail for your community

Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), in cooperation with the cities of Santa Ana and Garden Grove, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), and the County of Orange, is advancing the OC Connect trail project. The project creates a 4-mile biking and walking trail connection between the downtown areas of Garden Grove and Santa Ana as well as to the Santa Ana River Trail and the countywide 66-mile bikeway, OC Loop. This project will improve the transportation network along the corridor and provide a safe, well-connected active transportation route. Sign up at the link below to get updates on this project from OCTA.

Receive OCTA project updates

Street closures and permitted events March 14-20

Find the locations of upcoming permitted events and road closures in Santa Ana at the link below. Please drive slowly and safely in construction zones and around crowded events.

Street closures and permitted events

Tales of the City

Ceremonial signs honor two women leaders

Last year, under the City Council’s leadership, we launched the Ceremonial Street Sign Topper program to commemorate the service, lives, and achievements of individuals, philanthropic groups and landmark events that have had a significant impact on the city. Now, during Women’s History Month, we have unveiled our second set of ceremonial street sign toppers to recognize two important women in Santa Ana history with Josephine “Chepa” Andrade Way and Lydia Romero-Cruz Way.

Josephine “Chepa” Andrade lived in the Logan neighborhood her entire life until she passed away in 2006. Ms. Andrade was a community activist and known for gathering signatures for petitions and encouraging neighbors to attend City Hall meetings. In the late 1980s, she took the lead in a newly formed Logan Neighborhood Committee to stop the rezoning of the family-oriented neighborhood into an industrial park. She received many recognitions and awards for her community involvement and for efforts to fight poverty, homelessness, injustice and hunger. Her honorary signs are installed along Logan Street at the intersections of Washington Avenue and Stafford Street. 

Lydia Romero-Cruz made a profound and lasting impact on children in Santa Ana. Ms. Romero-Cruz, who lived in the Logan Neighborhood, passed away in April 1996 at age 35. Ms. Romero-Cruz was well respected in her field as a bilingual teacher and lectured on language development. She gave back to her community by teaching new generations of students and encouraging Spanish dual immersion programs in schools. In 1997, after her passing, Ms. Romero-Cruz was awarded the “We Honor Ours” (WHO) Award from the California Teachers Association. The honorary “Lydia Romero-Cruz Way” signs are installed along Lincoln Avenue at the intersections of Washington Avenue and Stafford Street.

Apply for a Ceremonial Street Sign Topper

City Council Meetings

In their regular meeting on March 5, 2024, the Santa Ana City Council: 

  • Approved a resolution calling for the release of all hostages held by Hamas, humanitarian aid for civilians in Gaza, and a permanent bilateral ceasefire in Gaza that recognizes Israel’s security and right to exist and a free Palestinian state.
  • Approved a sole source purchase order to The Charles Machine Works Inc. for repair and replacement of sewage lines for an amount not to exceed $1,750,000, to repair lateral sewer lines that connect homes and businesses to the main sewage collection system.
  • Authorized increasing the contract amount with Core & Main LP, Ferguson Enterprises LLC, and Western Water Works Supply Company for the purchase of waterworks fittings and supplies by $400,000 a year, for a new amount not to exceed $2,400,000, for maintenance and repairs of the City’s water system.
  • Awarded a blanket order contract to Hach Company for the purchase of water quality testing supplies and maintenance services on an as-needed basis, in an amount not to exceed $650,000, for sampling and testing to ensure City water supplies meet all applicable water quality standards.

Subscribe here to receive City meeting agenda notifications. City Council meetings are typically held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month, with the closed session beginning at 5 p.m. or earlier. The open meeting session begins at 5:30 p.m. Meetings have both in-person and virtual participation and attendance and are live streamed on the City’s YouTube channel and our TV channel, CTV3 (channel 3 on Spectrum.) If you’d like to provide public comments on agenda and non-agenda items, you can email, attend in person, or join the Zoom webinar online or by phone.

March 19, 2024, Meeting Agenda


Community Budget Meetings – March 14 & 21

The City of Santa Ana needs the community’s input on the 2024-25 budget! Join our community budget meetings and take our budget survey to share your ideas about which local programs and services are most important to you and how your tax dollars should be spent.

  • Thursday, March 14
  • 6-7 p.m.
  • McFadden Institute of Technology, 2701 S. Raitt St.


  • Thursday, March 21
  • 6-7 p.m.
  • El Salvador Community Center, 1825 W. Civic Center Drive

Participate in the budget process

Craft a Suffragette Rosette – March 16

Come and craft a rosette badge inspired by the Women’s Suffrage Movement in celebration of Women’s History Month at Santa Ana Public Library.

  • Saturday, March 16
  • 2–3:30 p.m.
  • Newhope Library, 122 N. Newhope St.

OCFA Open House – March 16

Orange County Fire Authority’s 2024 Open House is on Saturday, March 16! This event will be held at OCFA headquarters in Irvine and is a great opportunity for you to meet your local firefighters, learn fire safety, and even put out pretend fires.

  • Saturday, March 16
  • 10 a.m.
  • 1 Fire Authority Road, Irvine

OCFA 2024 Open House

Arts Academy – March 16

Is animation in your future? Teens ages 13-17 can join Parks and Recreation’s ARTS Academy and learn to animate a bouncing ball! Don’t miss out! Spots are limited. All art work will be showcased on our Gallery Night at Salgado Community Center on March 22 at 6 p.m.

  • Saturday, March 16
  • 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Salgado Community Center, 706 N. Newhope St.

For more information please contact (714) 571-4267.

Free Resident Day at Santa Ana Zoo – March 17

Santa Ana residents receive free admission to the Zoo on the third Sunday of every month. Proof of residency (such as ID or a utility bill) is required.

  • Sunday, March 17
  • 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (last admission is at 4 p.m.)
  • Santa Ana Zoo, 1801 E. Chestnut Ave.

Santa Ana Zoo

Spring Safety Egg Hunt – March 21

Egg-citing news! The Santa Ana Police Department is hosting its first Spring Safety Egg Hunt with fun activities, information booths, photo ops and more.

  • Thursday, March 21
  • 4-6 p.m.
  • Jack Fisher Park, 2501 N. Flower St.

Teen Excursion to San Diego Zoo – March 23

The Teen Excursion Program is getting ready for their next adventure! The March’s Excursion will be at the San Diego Zoo in the city of San Diego. This is a FREE excursion for the first 50 Santa Ana teens, ages 13-17.

  • Saturday, March 23
  • 8 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
  • San Diego Zoo

If you are new to the excursion program, please make sure to also download the registration packet and return it to the Garfield Community Center at 501 N. Lacy St. Santa Ana, CA 92701. For more information, please call (714) 571-4288.

Register for Teen Excursion to San Diego Zoo

Get Connected Workshop – March 23

With technology at our fingertips, it’s never been easier to get connected! Join Santa Ana Public Library for a bilingual (English/Vietnamese) workshop on information searching techniques; how to write search questions, how to discern reliable information, and how to save information. Open to adults.

  • Saturday, March 23
  • 3-4 p.m.
  • Newhope Library, 122 N. Newhope St.

Free Learn to Ride Bike Class – March 23


The City of Santa Ana, through Santa Ana Active Streets, is offering a free Learn to Ride bike class for new or non-riders. This class will teach the basic skills necessary to ride a bike independently and build confidence. The class will emphasize the importance of helmet use when riding a bicycle and teach how to wear a helmet properly. Participants will receive a free bike helmet and bike lights.

  • Saturday, March 23
  • 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Centennial Park Basketball Courts, 3000 W. Edinger Ave.

Must be at least 10 years old to sign up. Adults are encouraged! For more information, contact Maria Baeza at 714-202-7393 or

Register for Learn to Ride

Pacific Park Monument Sign Unveiling Ceremony – March 23

Join us for the unveiling ceremony for the Pacific Park monument. The refurbishment of the monument signs commemorates the “Pacific Park” neighborhood name. The neighborhood entry monuments are located at two areas: Walnut Street and Cypress Avenue and McFadden Avenue and Cedar Street. Refreshments will be served following the ceremony.

  • Saturday, March 23
  • 11-11:30 a.m.
  • Corner of Walnut and Cypress streets

For more information or to RSVP, please contact Public Works Agency Community Liaison Michelle Micallef at (714) 647-5091 or

911 for Kids Awareness Storytime – March 26

Orange County Fire Authority and 9-1-1 for Kids is collaborating with Santa Ana Public Library for emergency preparedness and 9-1-1 education storytime. Join us for a reading of “No Dragons for Tea” with our special guests.

  • Tuesday, March 26
  • 10:30-11 a.m.
  • Main Library, 26 Civic Center Plaza

Crosswalk Art Dedication Ceremony – March 27

The Public Works Agency will be hosting a dedication ceremony for the Willard Neighborhood Crosswalk Art project.

  • Wednesday, March 27
  • 6 p.m.
  • Corner of 15th and Ross streets

For more information or to RSVP, please contact Public Works Agency Community Liaison Michelle Micallef at (714) 647-5091 or email

Egg-cellent Adventure – March 30

Join our annual free, family-friendly Egg-Cellent Adventure, which will feature egg hunts, photo opps, live entertainment, a petting zoo, inflatables, and much more. The Title Level Partner, the Los Angeles Clippers, will have their community team on site with exciting basketball themed activities and prizes! Community partner Santa Ana Lions Club will host a pancake breakfast from 9 to 11:30 a.m. for $5 per person.

  • Saturday, March 30
  • 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Centennial Park, 3000 W. Edinger Ave.

Egg-Cellent Adventure

Free Household Hazardous Waste Drop-off event – March 30

The Public Works Agency is sponsoring a household hazardous waste collection that is free to Santa Ana residents. No appointment is required. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to safely dispose of unwanted household chemicals that cannot be disposed of in the regular trash. What can you bring to the household hazardous waste collection? Click the link below to find out what is and isn’t allowed.

  • Saturday, March 30
  • 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Saddleback High School, 2802 S. Flower St.

Hazardous Waste Collection

Free Spring Bicycle Ride & Learn How to Compost – March 30


Come out and learn about bike safety and composting with CRECE Urban Farms and Sistema Agricola Local de Santa Ana (SALSA!) while enjoying a spring bicycle ride. The route will be a slow paced 4.5-mile ride guided by bike captains ensuring traffic safety. No one will be left behind. Ride 1.8 miles to CRECE and stop for a composting workshop then ride 2.7 miles returning to the train station. For more information, contact Maria Baeza at 714-202-7393 or

  • Saturday, March 30
  • 9:30-11 a.m.
  • Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center, 1000 E. Santa Ana Blvd.

Register for Spring Ride and Compost


Report issues with the mySantaAna app

The mySantaAna mobile app puts the power of the City of Santa Ana government in the palm of your hand! Download the app to quickly and easily report issues such as potholes, graffiti, downed trees and much more.

Download the mySantaAna app

Assistance programs

Who do I call at City Hall?

Important phone numbers:

  • City Hall main line: (714) 647-5400
  • Code Enforcement: (714) 667-2780
  • Graffiti Hotline: (877) 786-7824
  • Emergency Water Services: (714) 953-8026
  • Public Works dispatch (street sweeping, trees): (714) 647-3380

Find more phone numbers for all City services

Utility services

Starting a small business?

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