As we near the election, Pleasanton Action Network has conducted many meetings with our city council candidates. This is our final report on Jarod Buna. To see our report card, please visit @pleasantonactionnetwork on Instagram.
Jarod Buna grew up in Pleasanton, attending Fairlands Elementary School and then graduating Amador Valley High School in 1996, where he was part of the nationally ranked Competition Civics/We the People team. He previously ran a small campaign fresh out of high school in 1996, but went on to graduate from UC Berkeley in 2000 with a degree in Biology and the UCLA School of Law in 2004. He has since been practicing law for some of the largest corporations in Silicon Valley, including Uber, for the past 20 years. During that time, Jarod returned to live in Pleasanton, where he raises his family and 3 kids.
In terms of addressing affordable housing overall, Jarod supports zoning land for mixed-use development, as he claims it has worked well in many other cities. He is also a strong advocate for local control both in the issue of affordable housing and others as well, unless legally required.
Jarod pledges that, if elected to the City Council, he would work to create a plan to address our city’s RHNA numbers within his first 90 days. Jarod believes East Pleasanton is “our best opportunity” to zone land in order to fulfill our upcoming RHNA numbers, and potentially even create a “new environment” with a second downtown, a new school, parks, and mix-used zoning. However, he believes the idea of using the Stoneridge area to fulfill our RHNA requirements would “not be an option”, because the area would lack the land necessary for an additional school.
Jarod supports some of the steps the city has taken to address the economic impacts of covid-19, namely the closure of Main Street on the weekends to support small businesses, which he would support even after the covid-19 pandemic ends.
He would consider the effects of COVID-19 in other issues as well, pledging to create “social distancing friendly parks” in East Pleasanton as part of his plan to implement RHNA numbers, and would work with the planning commission and city operations to build “rapid response health centers” stocked with PPE in case of a future outbreak.
Jarod is against both defunding the police and having a civilian oversight commission, as the latter would add “a very political element that adds to the complexity of solving the problem.” Like others, he believes the council better functions as an oversight body, as there is a high risk of a civilian oversight commission clashing with the city government in attempting to oversee the police as seen in other cities.
However, Jarod recognizes that many BIPOC minorities do not trust the police and feels that having more diversity in policing would go a long way in rebuilding that trust. He also believes that policing is an incredibly tough job and would work to make sure that the PPD has “the best training and support” in order to keep Pleasanton safe and meet the community’s needs.