Numerous individuals packed the Menifee Lake Country Club to hear officials speak about Menifee’s changes, accomplishments and planned investments during the city’s 6th Annual State of the City Address, which took place shortly after 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 19.
The address was geared at discussing Menifee’s rapid growth and all the things associated with that growth; Mayor Scott Mann talked about the need to invest in public safety, business, economic development, infrastructure, residential housing, the rural community and quality of life for the residents of Menifee.
He said Menifee is the second fastest growing city in all of Riverside County and the sixth fastest growing city in the State of California. He added that the city’s growth is indicative of its increasing value as a place to live.
“You’re selecting Menifee to be your hometown and the numbers don’t lie,” Mann said. “We’ve grown around 15 percent in our population in the few short years since our incorporation.”
That growth has been a challenge Mann said the city has enthusiastically pursued without increasing the size of their staff. He said that when compared with Murrieta and Temecula, the City of Menifee has the smallest staff per square mile as a city but has been able to accomplish a lot in spite of its relative size.
He credited City Manager Rob Johnson for Menifee’s continued effort to operate smoothly and effectively in the face of sizable growth.
Johnson and the team of individuals who work with him in various departments of the city’s office have won four awards this year for their efforts in city planning and other endeavors, according to the mayor.
Still, Mann said the city needs to invest in its future as growth continues. He said that various components of the city’s operations are either being worked on currently or will be worked on in order to “keep Menifee moving.”
One of those first components addressed by Mann was public safety. He mentioned the city’s addition of three new officers, two patrol officers and one motorcycle officer.
He said the city would like to see the addition of more public safety officials as it continues to grow; he added that the passage of SB-69 – a California Senate bill that would allocate additional property tax revenue to local jurisdictions – would help in that endeavor.
“It would make Menifee whole in terms of lost revenue,” Mann said of the bill.
The mayor said the City of Menifee might be able to add 18 additional police department members with the allocation of those funds if the bill were to pass.
Next, Mann addressed business and mentioned the addition of various retail stores and restaurants to the city, gains that will likely keep Menifee residents from having to go to nearby Murrieta or Temecula to shop or get their favorite kinds of foods.
The addition of various commercial retail spaces has been part of the draw for businesses to come to Menifee and part of Menifee’s economic development plan at large, according to Mann.
Infrastructure and housing were two other components discussed during the speech. Mann said the city has worked on a number of infrastructure and road projects as part of its rolling five year capital improvement program to accommodate a growing population of individuals who use the I-215 freeways and various roadways within the city.
He said the city has also worked with housing developers to continue accommodating the growing population of families looking to buy a home, but not at the expense of rural areas and the rural community, which city officials are working to preserve.
Ultimately, Mann said the city is working hard to satisfy the people of Menifee and make sure they’re invested in as well.
“We’re making undertaking projects today and making hard decisions now that will result in a higher quality of life tomorrow,” he said.
City Manager Rob Johnson, who spoke briefly before Mann’s speech, said he was thankful for the people in the community themselves.
“There are so many people in this community that make us who we are, make us proud and make us grow,” he said.