Sanchez, a 13-year resident of Menifee and member of multiple local advisory councils, will oppose incumbent John Denver in the Nov. 4 election. Prospective candidates have until Aug. 8 to return completed applications to City Hall.
"I want the fourth district to be recognized and have some of the amenities that are needed," Sanchez said Thursday. "We have very little of them on the east side of the 215 in terms of grocery stores, restaurants and gas stations. We have a lot of housing coming in, and that means we need amenities like these, plus road improvements and increase in public safety."
Sanchez is a resident of the Oasis senior community and has been very active in representing seniors in the area. For 10 years, she has been a member of the Riverside County Council on Aging, having been first appointed by County Supervisor Jeff Stone and later by Supervisor Marion Ashley. She serves on the advisory committee for the Kay Ceniceros Senior Center and was recently appointed chair of Menifee's newly created Senior Citizens Advisory Committee.
Her concern extends well beyond the senior community, however. Sanchez said she recognizes the diversity of District 4 and plans to make the needs of young families in the Heritage Lake community a priority. She has listened to the concerns of Heritage Lake residents about security issues in their development, which is not gated and is adjacent to open land on the edge of town. She has also heard their concerns about a lack of commercial development to serve their needs.
Sanchez says she plans to seek ways to attract commercial developers to her district while preserving open land that enhances Menifee's rural feel.
"We need to have effective and unbiased elected officials who will look out for the welfare of District 4," she said. "I want those residents to have a voice that elected officials will listen to. I would have regular meetings with the people in my district to hear their concerns.
"Many who live in Heritage Lake go to Sun City to shop, but they are not too happy about it and don't always feel safe because of the homeless there. Some go to Hemet, and there go our tax dollars. For at least eight years that I know of, there has been a sign on the corner of McCall and Menifee Road that says "shopping center coming." I feel we should add an ordinance that says when a commercial developer buys land in our city, they should have to have some kind of time period to show us what they plan to do with it."
Sanchez also stressed the need for more police presence in her district and "more amenities for the children" in Heritage Lake and the Romoland community.
"We have a General Plan, but we don't have a Master Plan," she said. "We need to make sure there are lands allocated for commercial use and other lands designated to preserve the rural feel. There's a lot going on in downtown Menifee, if you will, but don't forget about us on this side of the freeway."