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First Term Accomplishments

In this short time since becoming Mayor, so much has been accomplished with the thoughtful engagement of our community, the dedicated work of city staff, and the unwavering leadership of the City Council. There is much to be proud of. Looking forward to the coming years, there is always more work to be done. Work that can and will continue to support a thriving, inclusive and engaged city. Let’s take a moment to reflect on and celebrate what has been accomplished so far.

City Goals

This city saw record turn-out in participation during our city goal setting process. These represent the most important, highest priority goals for the City to accomplish over the next two years, and as such, resources to accomplish them are included in the 2017-19 Financial Plan.
Climate Action

Climate Action is one of our major city goals for the first time in our history which is something to be proud of. This includes committing to being a Net-Zero city, implementing cost-effective measures, introducing a Sustainability Coordinator for the city and moving forward on local community choice energy. It also includes our new policies on plastics.


Housing affordability is an ongoing goal for San Luis Obispo. In the financial plan, we strive to facilitate increased production of all housing types designed to be economically accessible to the area workforce and low and very low-income residents, through increased density and proximity to transportation corridors in alignment with the Climate Action Plan.

Multi-Modal Transportation

Multi-Modal Transportation, or combined transport, prioritizes the implementation of the Bicycle Master Plan, pedestrian safety, and the Short-Range Transit Plan. This, in turn, benefits our environment by cutting down on pollutants.

Fiscal Sustainability and Responsibility

Fiscal Sustainability and Responsibility is a goal to continue implementing the City’s Fiscal Responsibility Philosophy with focus on economic development and responsiveness, funded liabilities and infrastructure financing.


Some Important Votes Taken in 2017
RHIP Repeal

The rental housing inspection program was one of the main issues of the 2016 campaign. The community was loud and clear on it’s concern around the controversial policy of the former city council. Many current council members ran on repealing it and early in 2017 we voted to officially do just that.  We’re now working on a way to assure people’s basic health and safely while respecting and honoring their privacy.


Development has always been a controversial subject in SLO. We now find ourselves with a huge housing crisis throughout the state. Being the fifth most expensive place to live in the United States, we do our best to create the type of housing that more people can afford. We voted to approve two developments that we hope will be part of addressing this growing issue. We have lost some local control through state legislation, but that doesn’t mean we should say yes to everything. Some were disappointed to see the project on Polomar come through. Heidi thinks the project could have been better which is why she voted no.

Moving Away From Plastics

While straws may seem like a small issue, their use adds up to be a big problem. Did you know that over 500 million straws are used every single day!? SLO is stepping up to do our part to create the solutions necessary to meet this big challenge. In the spring of 2018 we will roll out a straws upon request ordinance and a no single use plastic bottles or cups on city property ordinance.

Bicycle Infrastructure

San Luis Obispo is not alone is prioritizing infrastructure that moves us toward a less car centric future. It is impossible to predict the future, but those that study it see private car ownership dropping 80 percent by 2030. As part of our Multi-Model goal we are moving to create more bike boulevards in 2018. Stay tuned.

Welcoming City

In response to the anti-immigrant tone and policies of the federal administration, we adopted a resolution declaring SLO as a Welcoming City which aims to stand on support of all people, regardless of documentation status.

Indigenous People's Day

We enacted a resolution celebrating Indigenous People’s Day and moving away from Columbus Day. Our hope is to return recognition and honor to our Chumash Heritage in this area. 

Community Connection

Mayoring is saying YES to as much as possible when the community reaches out for support.

Heidi was excited to support the NAACP as they re-established here on the Central Coast.

There have been a lot of attacks on marginalized groups and on basic human decency recently. One favorite event in SLO this year was Meet your Muslim Neighbor. It is a real joy watching our community come together in challenging times.

Share the story of how Heidi became an activist and went from being an activist for change to being elected as mayor in a TEDX Talk. This talk will be released online soon!

Homelessness is a growing problem in the state of California. It has been an honor spending time out at our homeless encampments and spending the night at the overflow shelter. Our new homeless shelter is on its way to being built. There’s certainly a lot left to do, and this is met with an eagerness to put time into this over the coming years.

In a running debut, Heidi ran the SLO 1/2 Marathon!

Every week Heidi is on campuses; from the grammar school all the way up to Cal Poly. This is one favorite aspect of being Mayor, getting to engage with the younger members of our community. To listen to their ideas and concerns and hopefully be able to inspire them to take active roles in their community.

One goal has been bridging the gap between the Cal Poly campus and the community. Through a lot of outreach and relationship building with students and faculty, Heidi believes we have seen a lot of success in this area.

We have so many great organizations doing important work here, and it has been a privilege to stand behind groups such as Womenade, Stand Strong, The Food Bank, and Restorative Partners to facilitate connections and support.

It has been exciting to work with a great group of leaders throughout the county on the Chamber Economic Visioning Team as we look at the challenges we face with the closure of Diablo Canyon and work together to constructively create the future San Luis Obispo that we want.

It is an Honor to be invited to be on San Luis Coastal’s new “Common Ground Advisory Task Force” whose primary objective is to provide the superintendent with ideas, suggestions, and action steps to achieve the goal of bringing to life the fundamental principle that all students deserve to feel safe and respected for who they are – regardless of religion, culture, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. Developing cultural competence, awareness, and understanding among staff and students is a priority in our district.

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