Kwong Focuses on Safety, Services in City Council Bid

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He’s done it once before, so Scott Kwong said he had an idea of what to change and what to keep the same in his second campaign for City Council.
Now that he’s established his familiarity with fellow residents, Kwong said he is intent on utilizing some of the more traditional tools of election campaigns.
“My strategy is much different now,” he said. “The first time around, I put the majority of my efforts into walking door to door. This time, I had a kickoff party and I now have three ‘Coffee With the Candidate’ events coming up as well.”
Kwong is one of seven candidates for the three open spots on the five-member City Council. The election will be held Nov. 7.
A Monterey Park native whose family moved to San Marino when he was in 8th grade, Kwong owns an auto repair shop in Montebello and also a smog inspection garage is Azusa. Just 28 years old, he has involved himself in a variety of local organizations, including Rotary Club of San Marino, Chinese Club of San Marino and East Meets West Parent Education Club, among others.
He also volunteers as the adviser to the San Marino High School Internet Club and represents San Marino on the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District.
Although the “mansionization” of San Marino was a hot topic when he ran in the 2015 election, Kwong said residents have turned their focus on the large number of vacant homes in town and also the rising tide of residential burglaries. Some, he said, see the two issues as related.
“The issues this time around are different,” he said. “I am prioritizing public safety this time.”
With that in mind, Kwong said he also would work to develop a variety of emergency response plans if elected.
“I would address the issues San Marino is facing, improve the services that we currently have and prepare for any contingencies that may arise,” he said. “For example, the drought could definitely happen again. If there’s a strong windstorm again, we should be planning for that. I’d like to work on contingency plans for sure.”
Kwong said he also would make an effort to improve transparency and access to City Hall business by advocating for video recording meetings for the city’s website and also broadcasting the meetings on local TV stations. In doing so, Kwong said he hopes to use his link to the schools to educate them about local issues as well.
“As a younger person, I want to inspire the younger generation to get more involved with the community,” he said.
Since moving here, Kwong said he has only seen the community improve, with the already strong schools getting better and the community building upon its charm.
“Even though San Marino [Unified School District] is a public school system, it is far superior to the private school I came from. My brother is a sophomore at the high school and he’s definitely getting a better education than I got,” he said. “The people are much closer to each other and with things going on in the city. The city looks nice, way better than when I first moved here.”
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