SALINAS VALLEY — Sen. Anna Caballero stopped by Greenfield and Soledad last Monday to present checks for $1 million and $400,000 in state funding, respectively, to the City of Greenfield for radio transmission and reception upgrades and to the Soledad-Mission Recreation District for improvements and maintenance at the swimming pool.
Caballero successfully secured a total of $1.8 million to fund essential community projects in the rural portion of the Salinas Valley. In addition to Greenfield and Soledad, King City was awarded $400,000 for improvements to park recreation facilities.
On Oct. 9, Caballero spent the day visiting each city to present a ceremonial check and tour each site.
“I have served the Salinas Valley as an attorney and elected representative for many years and consider it an honor and privilege to be able to continue to serve through 2024,” said Caballero, who represents California Senate District 14, composed of majority portions of Merced, Fresno and Madera counties, and serves as the interim representative for the Salinas Valley and San Benito County until 2024, when a newly elected senator will assume the district. “I understand that small, rural communities need resources and investment and that is why it is important for me to work closely with communities to identify priorities. This funding is an example of what we can accomplish when we all work together.”
The million-dollar funding for Greenfield will be dedicated to a much-needed upgrade: improving first responder radio communication in South Monterey County.
“We truly appreciate the funding of this project,” said Greenfield Mayor Robert White. “This will greatly enhance the communication of all our first responders improving public safety and response times in emergency situations.”
The monumental investment in a new radio communication tower is more than just physical infrastructure, as it symbolizes the City’s continuous effort to ensure seamless communication to protect the community, according to Greenfield Police Chief Guillermo Mixer.
“We are truly grateful for Sen. Caballero’s leadership and commitment to public safety. Her efforts in securing $1 million in funding for the Greenfield radio tower benefits all first responders and helps ensure a safer and more resilient community,” Mixer said. “This vital investment is critical to ensure seamless communication, safeguarding lives and property for our residents. We extend our heartfelt thanks to Sen. Caballero as we build a safer and stronger community.”
Soledad-Mission Recreation District will use the $400,000 funding for improvements and maintenance at the swimming pool facility — the only indoor pool in South Monterey County — to ensure affordable aquatic programming for the community and to reduce the use of water and natural gas.
“Sen. Caballero continues to support our families by allocating $400,000 in state funds to the Soledad Mission Recreation District for improvements, maintenance and reduction of water and natural gas, making the pool more energy efficient and implementing long-term sustainable water conservation practices,” said Soledad Mayor Anna Velazquez. “Being the only indoor pool in South Monterey County, this investment will ensure our children, families and future generations continue to have access to affordable swim lessons and an array of aquatic programming.”
According to Soledad-Mission Recreation District Executive Director Frances Bengston, the state’s investment in the swimming pool has “exponential positive impact” in Soledad.
“It means an investment in the provision of lifesaving skills, in our students and high school athletics, in our senior and mobility challenged community, in health and fitness, in resource conservation, and in many first time jobs,” Bengston explained. “The Soledad Pool is a special place built and kept alive by the amazing people and swimming community; it is full of personal connection and shared memories for our town.”
She added that small special districts, like Soledad-Mission Recreation District, are challenged to maintain aging facilities, keep programs affordable and compete with the ever-rising cost of providing these facilities and programs.
“Our community deserves a revitalized and rehabilitated facility for continued enjoyment and benefit, and our board is dedicated to boldly pursuing additional investments and improvements for not only our community but also the region,” Bengston said. “We are so grateful for our local representatives and Sen. Caballero in championing this first step.”