COSAS: City Manager's Newsletter for December 17, 2021

Date: December, 17 2021 Category: City Manager, City Manager’s Newsletter

An aerial image of the Santa Ana Civic Center, focusing around the old court house, with white text over laid, reading: COSAS CITY OF SANTA ANA STORIES. There is a blue bar at the bottom with white text which reads, "A NEWSLETTER FROM THE DESK OF CITY MANAGER KRISTINE RIDGE"

In this edition of the City Manager’s newsletter, learn about fun holiday events like the Winter Village, a park naming contest, how to get free sandbags during winter rains, a completed bike lane project, new affordable housing, and more City news and events.

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Spotlight Photo

Rainy Day in Santa Ana

Photo Credit: Christian A.

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City Manager’s Highlights

City Employees Hand Out Resident Stimulus Cards

You may have heard about the Revive Santa Ana Resident Stimulus Program, which was a high priority of the City Council when deciding how to use funds from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA.) The City is providing 20,000 prepaid Visa cards worth $300 each to residents in the areas with the highest poverty rates in Santa Ana.

I’m proud of the work our City staff has done not just in organizing the stimulus program, but also the hundreds of employees who have been working overtime on weekends and off hours to hand out the cards door to door. Many members of our executive management team and the City Council have been volunteering their time, too.

Resident Stimulus Program:

Skate into Santa Ana Winter Village

Did you know you can ice-skate in downtown Santa Ana? That’s right, ice-skating! Another federally funded Revive Santa Ana program, the Santa Ana Winter Village is open daily through Jan. 2 at Civic Center Plaza next to City Hall. With it, we are revitalizing our Civic Center, providing a fun local activity for residents, and bringing more people to our historic downtown business district!

Check out our promo video and a video of last week’s opening ceremony below. Go to the link to get tickets and learn more.

Santa Ana Winter Village:


COVID-19 Mask Rules and Boosters

I’m sure we’re all excited to head into the holidays, but we can’t forget that we’re still in a pandemic. COVID-19 cases are surging again, so the California Department of Public Health has issued an order requiring face coverings for everyone, vaccinated or not, in indoor public settings. The best protection against COVID-19 is to get vaccinated, and now you can get a booster shot too. Please have a safe and fun holiday!

COVID-19 Resources:


City of Santa Ana Holiday Closure is Dec. 24 to Jan. 2

The City of Santa Ana will have its regular extended closure over the holidays. City Hall will be closed beginning Friday, Dec. 24, 2021, and will reopen on Monday, Jan. 3, 2022. Street sweeping is canceled on Dec. 24 and Dec. 31. The Main Library and Newhope Library will also be closed during this time.

Complete Holiday Closure Schedule:

City Reaches Agreement with County Over Shelter Beds

In the City of Santa Ana’s ongoing efforts to provide shelter and support to the homeless, we also work to ensure that other local government agencies do their part to help the unhoused. We’re happy to announce that under the guidance of U.S. District Judge David O. Carter, we have reached an agreement with the County to receive priority access to 125 beds at the County shelter on Yale Street. This will help us to better serve Santa Ana’s homeless population and better protect our neighborhoods.

Go to the City’s Homeless Services Data Dashboard at the link below to see all of the ways in which we are helping unhoused members of our community.

Homeless Services Data Dashboard:

Fill Up 10 Free Sandbags at the City Yard

Be prepared for rain this winter! The City of Santa Ana is offering a free sandbag filling station to residents and businesses at the City Yard. Up to 10 sandbags are available per Santa Ana residence or business location. The bags are not pre-filled and you must fill the bags yourself.

Sandbag Station Information:

Help Name Our New Park at Raitt and Myrtle

The City of Santa Ana is looking for your suggestions to help name the latest addition to our Parks system. The new, 1.18-acre park will be built on two City-owned parcels at the northeast corner of Raitt and Myrtle streets and will feature a skate park, play equipment, exercise area, drought-tolerant landscaping, drinking water fountains, lighting, a public restroom, and other amenities. Please click on the link below to submit your suggestion!

Suggest a Name:

Become a Park Host at Thornton Park

The City of Santa Ana Parks, Recreation and Community Services Agency (PRCSA) seeks applicants to serve as a Park Host at Thornton Park. The primary role of a Park Host is to have a visible presence in the park and serve as the park ambassador for the surrounding community.  This is an unpaid position; however, the Park Host may live in a City owned two- or three-bedroom travel trailer, which includes utility hook-up and service at no cost to the Park Host.

Apply to Be a Park Host:

First Point Affordable Apartments Taking Applications

A computer rendering of a new apartment building. There are two palm trees and a few vehicles in the parking lot in the foreground. The building appears to be backwards-L shaped, with the top coming towards the viewer from the right. There are multiple textures on the building, some areas are painted white or yellow, some seem to be almost like wood floor and some seem to be brick. The bottom floor is commercial space, it has the word "RETAIL" in three places along the overhang on the first floor, as well as a LEASING CENTER on the right.

First Point I & II Apartments are new, affordable, multifamily apartment communities currently under construction at 2114 E. First St. in Santa Ana. First Point is now accepting online interest list applications. The project includes 552 one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom apartment homes. Preference is given to applicants who are residents of Santa Ana and/or worked at least 32 hours per week for at least the last six months in Santa Ana.

Learn More and Apply:

Keep Wastewater Lines Clear

A graphic with a blue band across the top and on the right side that reads, "Fat, Oli, and Grease: Cool it, Can it, Trash it! Never pour fats, oils, or grease down the drain!" 
It has illustrations of a variety of fats, oils, and grease, including a skillet pouring some sort of fat or oil or grease into a can that says COOL IT CAN IT TRASH IT!
There is a can of lard, a pitcher of oil, a brick of butter, and a drain with a red circle and line through it to really help drive the point home.

During the holidays it’s good to remember that more than half of all sewer blockages each year are caused by fats, oils, or grease (FOG). Help keep our waste water running by pouring your turkey drippings, frying oils, bacon grease, and other FOG into the garbage.

  • Pour small amounts of grease into a non-recyclable container. Make sure the grease hardens before disposing of it in the trash.
  • Before washing, scrape and dry-wipe pots, pans, and dishes with paper towels.
  • Minimize the use of your garbage disposal.
  • Use a sink strainer to catch food items, then empty the strainer into the trash.

Learn More About FOG Prevention: 

OCFA Holiday Fire Safety Tips

Keep a lid and a fire extinguisher nearby when cooking! Has a photo of a stockpot filled with flames and a man's arm going to put a lid over the flames. In the background is a fire extinguisher Has an image of a woman using a fire extinguisher on a stove fire. Across the top it reads, PULL the pin, AIM low, SQUEEZE the lever, SWEEP the nozzle from side to side.

Be careful of fire risks over the holidays from cooking, candles, Christmas trees and electrical devices. Remember these key tips from the Orange County Fire Authority to keep your home safe:

  • Keep a lid or fire extinguisher nearby when cooking
  • To use a fire extinguisher: Pull the pin, aim low, squeeze the lever, sweep the nozzle from side to side
  • Remove your tree promptly from your home after the holidays
  • Use flameless candles
  • Do not overload power strips
  • Keep home heating devices at least 3 feet from anything that can burn

More OCFA Safety Tips: 

Closure at Santa Ana Blvd. and Ross Street Dec. 20 to Feb. 2022

The Santa Ana Boulevard and Ross Street intersection will be closed starting as early as Monday, December 20, 2021, and will remain closed until February 2022 while crews continue OC Streetcar track installation. The closure will be in place day and night for the duration of the work. Local access to businesses will be maintained.

We recommend using alternate routes and plan for possible delays since this street closure will impact traffic flow.

Learn More:

Tales of the City

Flower Street Bikeway Project Blooms

Pedestrian, bicycle and traffic safety is a high priority for the City Council and the City of Santa Ana.

In 2015, the City’s Safe Mobility Santa Ana (SMSA) program proposed the installation of bicycle lanes along with traffic signal upgrades to a protected left turn phasing at the intersections of Flower Street at McFadden Avenue and at Edinger Avenue. This road is heavily traveled by students and parents getting to the two high schools and three elementary schools along Flower Street.

In April 2015, the Public Works Agency applied for $945,000 in grant funds from the Highway Safety Improvement Program. The bicycle lanes and traffic signal upgrades project was supplemented with the additional funding for pavement rehabilitation along this corridor from First Street to Warner Avenue. Construction began in September 2020, and the Public Works Agency is happy to announce that the project was successfully completed this month.

See Our Active Transportation Plan:

City Council Meeting Recap

At the Dec. 7, 2021, meeting, the Santa Ana City Council …

  • Approved an agreement to create a design for a new dog park at Centennial Park.
  • Authorized a Request for Proposals to build new affordable rental and ownership projects in Santa Ana, with over $18 million in housing funds available for development loans.
  • Added $9.2 million in funding to the City’s rental assistance program to continue to help residents impacted by the pandemic. The City has given out over $21.5 million so far.
  • Held a public hearing for the 2022 Downtown Santa Ana Business Improvement District.
  • Continued the General Plan Update to the Dec. 21 meeting.

City Council meetings are typically held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 5 p.m. Meetings now have both in-person and virtual participation and attendance and 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, attend in person, or join the Zoom webinar online or by phone.

Dec. 21 Meeting Agenda:


Santa Ana Winter Village - Through Jan. 2

The Santa Ana Winter Village is open daily through Jan. 2, 2022. Bring the whole family for hands-on activities, holiday shopping, story time, entertainment and more. Food will be available for purchase at the event. Special events and activities are planned most days, including:

  • Dec. 19 and 26 - Anaheim Ducks DJ, Slap Shot, Wild Wing
  • Dec. 20 - 80s Night
  • Dec. 21 - Story Time with Santa, Santa Photo Op

View the Full Schedule:

The Seva Collective Free Drive-Thru Food Pantry - Dec. 18

The Seva Collective is hosting a free drive-thru Food Pantry at Villa Fundamental School! Walk-up service available, no registration required. Hours are 9 to 11:30 a.m. on Dec. 18.

Learn More:

Santa Ana Zoo: Resident Free Day - Dec. 19

On Resident Free Day, the third Sunday of each month, residents of Santa Ana may visit the Santa Ana Zoo for free. Proof of residency (driver's license, utility bill) will be required upon arrival. Not valid to schools or business addresses. Dec. 19 is the last Residence Free Day of 2021.

Learn More:

Santa Ana Sundays at the Bowers Museum - Dec. 19 and 26

Bowers offers free general admission to all Santa Ana residents on Sundays through a generous donation in memory of Dorothy Goerl and courtesy of the Lockhart Family. Santa Ana residents will need to provide proof of residency with an ID, driver’s license or utility bill.

Learn More:

Rent Stabilization and Eviction Ordinances Workshop - Dec. 22

The City of Santa Ana is holding a virtual workshop on Wednesday, December 22, about the new Rent Stabilization Ordinance and the Just Cause Eviction Ordinance. The workshop will take place at 6 p.m. via Zoom.

Learn More:

Winter Break Camps at the Cube OC - Dec. 27-30

Discovery Cube Orange County is offering a series of fun one-day, in-person educational camps to get your children involved in awesome hands-on science learning. Each camp is three hours per day. Register your child for one or multiple camps.

Learn More: